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An adaptation of Jon Krakauer’s 2003 book, “Under the Banner of Heaven,” on Hulu, uses the murder of a woman and her daughter as a means to examine the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Photo from IMDB

Peeking at the Underbelly of the Mormon Church in ‘Under the Banner of Heaven’

In 1984, Brenda Lafferty, a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) in American Fork, Utah, and her 15-month-old daughter, Erica, were brutally murdered with a 10-inch boning knife. Her husband, Allen Lafferty, found their bodies and reported the crime to the police.


Tina Fey is among many stars who make cameo appearances in “Only Murders in the Building,” along with stars Selena Gomez, Martin Short and Steve Martin. Season Two debuted on June 28. Photo courtesy IMDB

‘Only Murders in the Building’ Delivers Killer Comedy (on Hulu) Once Again

It’s hard to imagine anyone going through life without laughing at Steve Martin or Martin Short — but that’s just my opinion.


Ariana DeBose, Ana Isabelle and Ilda Mason make a compelling case for watching the new “West Side Story,” made in 2021 by Steven Spielberg, with new choreography by Justin Peck. Photo from IMDB

From Stage to Screen: Three Groundbreaking Musicals

If you love musical theater or want to introduce it to your kids or grandkids, here are three landmark shows that can be streamed.

“Oklahoma”

Rodgers and Hammerstein reinvented the musical in 1943 with “Oklahoma,” the first show to integrate the book — and a rather dark one — with the songs.


Ryan and Tatum O’Neal bicker their way across Kansas and Missouri in the 1973 film, “Paper Moon.” Photo from IMDB

Come Along for the Ride on Aug. 12 with ‘Paper Moon’

The Boondocks Film Society (BFS) is a curious little family, one that has no apparent roots but has enormous love — for the diverse members of its film-fan community and for the cult films that those members love to watch, together.


Berkshire International Film Festival will show “Four Winters: A Story of Jewish Partisan Resistance & Bravery During World War II” on Aug. 2. Photo from Jewish Partisans Film

The Fight of Their Lives, in a Film at BIFF

The Berkshire International Film Festival (BIFF) and New Moon Films will offer the New England premiere of the award-winning “Four Winters: A Story of Jewish Partisan Resistance & Bravery During World War II.”


Even the most modern families can enjoy watching old- fashioned family classics like “That Darn Cat” from 1965. Image from IMDB

The Lost Art of Innocent Summer Fun

Every August for 19 summers, my family and I would pack up my grandparents’ car and embark on our annual family vacation to Rhode Island.

It’s been almost seven years since our last trip together, but I can still picture our favorite beaches, summer rentals, traditions and routines as if we’d never left the beach.

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