Features

A Job Well Done

More than a year ago, I began to notice the tall, thin young man who stood at the corner of Brooke Road and MD 108 in Sandy Spring. Each weekend in all kinds of weather, he waved a vertical sign…

Mike at the Movies

Captain America: The Winter Soldier (PG-13) **** Pity poor Captain America. Turned into the Captain at the end of World War II, the poor guy is in many ways psychologically stuck in the 1940s though he looks modern. Can you…

Passover Food Done Right

Here I share my favorites from best-selling author Tina Wasserman’s latest book, “Entrée to Judaism: A Culinary Exploration of the Jewish Diaspora,” and the newly released “Entrée to Judaism for Families: Cooking and Kitchen Conversations with Children.” Wasserman hosts www.cookingandmore.com…

Mike at the Movies

The Grand Budapest Hotel (R) **** This is one weird, funny, audacious and wonderful piece of filmmaking. It is not to be watched while fatigued or in an inattentive manner: You’ll lose track. Briefly, the story is the history of…

Black Beasts — Real and Imaginary

The French have an expression, “bête noire,” that comes easily to me when I’m talking about a special fear of mine when I was young. The word “fear” takes on a deeper, more sinister meaning when I use bête noire…

Comfort Foods for March

March means the beginning of spring in some parts of the world, but it is still winter in other areas. While the March winds are still blowing, enjoy these comfort foods. Then, as spring begins, enjoy the refreshing flavor of…

“Life After Life” Written by Kate Atkinson

When you pick up British writer Kate Atkinson’s popular 2013 novel “Life After Life,” you have to be willing to enter a new world of storytelling. As Atkinson casually says in interviews, it has a “high-concept” structure. One look at…

Mike at the Movies

Pompeii (PG-13) ** This is a movie, not a documentary. It is a movie we’ve all seen before. It involves a slave who is a gladiator, small but effective, a black slave who is the noblest character in the cast,…

Mike at the Movies

The Monuments Men (PG-13) **** George Clooney gambled on his audience and their patience in this odd war film. Many critics find it too episodic and slight for true praise, and episodic it is. Perhaps Clooney, who wrote and directed…