Jun 092014
 
(photo by Owen Courreges for UptownMessenger.com)

(photo by Owen Courreges for UptownMessenger.com)

Owen Courreges

I’ve mentioned before in this column that I grew up loving the late-1960’s run of the popular police procedural Dragnet.  Jack Webb, depicting LAPD Sergeant Joe Friday, narrated the series as the most honest and dedicated police officer ever envisioned.

In most episodes, Sgt. Friday would be working in a case in a random division – homicide, robbery, bunco/frauds, etc. – and the viewer would watch as he gradually solved the case.  In other episodes, however, the series dealt with less sexy matters such as police administration and internal affairs investigations.  All the while, Sgt. Friday was as impassive as he was unimpeachable.

What you may not know is that Dragnet, which started as a radio program in 1949, was so popular that it spawned an series set in New Orleans. Continue reading »

Apr 222014
 
The Coliseum Square fountain flows in the background during a crawfish boil fundraiser in May 2012. (photo courtesy of Jim McAlister)

The Coliseum Square fountain flows in the background during a crawfish boil fundraiser in May 2012. (photo courtesy of Jim McAlister)

(image via neworleansfilmsociety.org)

(image via neworleansfilmsociety.org)

Two of the Crescent City’s best springtime offerings — the Coliseum Square Association’s annual crawfish boil fundraiser and a showing of “The Goonies” in the New Orleans Film Society’s Moonlight Movies series — will converge on the same evening in an unexpected but possibly perfect pairing next month. Continue reading »

Apr 152014
 
Alba Huddleston holds a sign she made honoring Neil deGrasse Tyson as she waits first in line Monday afternoon for his speaking appearance at Tulane later that night. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Alba Huddleston holds a sign she made honoring Neil deGrasse Tyson as she waits first in line Monday afternoon for his speaking appearance at Tulane later that night. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

A line of diehards waiting all day, even in the rain — that’s the sort of treatment usually reserved for rock stars and Hollywood legends, right?

For a group of local science diehards waiting for his appearance at Tulane on Monday, Neil deGrasse Tyson — the charismatic astrophysicist with the new weekly science show on network television — is definitely somewhere on that level.

“Neil deGrasse Tyson has a very noble mission, and that’s to bring science and science literacy to the masses,” said Alba Huddleston, an industrial engineer originally from Honduras. “He inspires people. If you don’t know exactly what he’s talking about, you can go and research it. You can go and find out for yourself. But he makes you excited.” Continue reading »

Mar 262014
 
Jean-Paul Villere

Jean-Paul Villere

Seems as though there’s a little bit of buzz of late in what makes one a New Orleanian.  Post Katrina among the questionable landscape Dirty Coast gave us the refreshing pause: Be a New Orleanian wherever you are.  But nowadays amid booming repopulation, white teapots, and the notion of gentrification, some seem to say well, hey, if I go to sleep and wake up in Orleans Parish, then that makes me a New Orleanian.  And to this I say: really!?  And to this I further say: Not really, not so much – but it is a good start. Continue reading »

Feb 212014
 
(via www.ashecac.org)

(via www.ashecac.org)

Ashé Cultural Arts Center  (via www.ashecac.org)

The Ashé Cultural Arts Center will host a free screening of “The Trials of Muhammed Ali” tonight (Friday, Feb. 21) and a number of other events now through the end of the month, including The New Orleans Jazz Marketplace celebration, The African Presence in Venezuela since President Hugo Chavez exhibit & film screening, and fun fitness sessions. Continue reading »

 Comments Off
Feb 092014
 
The "Siblings of Doctors" sketch group featuring Rasika Mathur, Ranjit Souri and Danny Pudi will headline New Orleans Comedy Arts Festival this week. (photo via Facebook.com)

The “Siblings of Doctors” sketch group featuring Rasika Mathur, Ranjit Souri and Danny Pudi will headline New Orleans Comedy Arts Festival this week. (photo via Facebook.com)

Niel Hamburger at the New Orleans Comedy and Arts festival in 2013 (via NOCAF)

Niel Hamburger at the New Orleans Comedy and Arts festival in 2013

The New Orleans Comedy and Arts festival has become larger and funnier every year, and this year headliners include Danny Pudi from NBC’s “Community” and his “Siblings of Doctors” sketch group, comedian Neil Hamburger and several MTV stars. Continue reading »

 Comments Off
Feb 092014
 

David Harris-Gershon (via the Jewish Community Center)

David Harris-Gershon (via the Jewish Community Center)


Explore Israeli culture this month at the Israel Coffeehouse Series presented by the New Orleans Jewish Community Center on Wednesday, Feb. 12 and Feb. 19. The events include a film screening, literature readings and a shaskshua dinner. Continue reading »

Dec 022013
 

The Prytania Theatre is inviting local college and university students and faculty to a free screening of the new movie “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom,” starring Idris Elba in a film version of the South African anti-apartheid revolutionary’s autobiography, on Tuesday evening in a red-carpet event with refreshments and prizes sponsored by Coca-Cola. Continue reading »

 Comments Off
Nov 182013
 

Harry Shearer (from "The Big Uneasy")

Harry Shearer (from “The Big Uneasy”)

Loyola University artist-in-residence Harry Shearer, a humorist known for his work on “Spinal Tap,” “The Simpsons” and “Le Show,” will lead a free public forum on comedy in film titled “What’s So Funny About That” this evening (Monday, Nov. 18) on campus. Continue reading »

 Comments Off