Movie Review: Dunkirk


When the credits roll on Christopher Nolan's latest film - a cinematic experience that brings the full scale of the Battle of Dunkirk to the big screen for the first time - the audience is left speechless. Unlike nearly all of his other films, it's not because you're trying Read more

Dream-Casting a Live-Action Little Mermaid for Disney


Perhaps no task is more difficult for a studio than casting a well-known franchise to match the sky-high expectations of fans. From novels to comic books to animated film remakes, Hollywood has had mixed results with the task; some have spent the big bucks to get the demanded stars, Read more

Best Movies of 2016: The 3rd Annual Groucho Awards


Welcome to the Third Annual Groucho Awards! This is my own platform to nominate and award the movies of my choosing, because it seems that far too often, the movies with the biggest campaigns get Oscar nominations and the little guys are left out in the cold. This year Read more

A compelling case that Corinne is six-years-old, and other Bachelor nonsense


  Written by: @jeremywilson412 In the words of Chris Harrison, "Coming up on this week's episode (recap) of The Bachelor..." The ladies receive their first real test, we pause to remember those we lost this week, I present a theory about Corinne that is bulletproof, and we discuss the contenders and pretenders. But Read more

I was not going to write about The Bachelor, but then...


(Written by: @JeremyWilson412) I wasn’t going to write about The Bachelor this year, but then a girl showed up in a shark costume convinced it was a dolphin costume. I wasn’t going to write about The Bachelor this year, but then a girl showed up who hooked up with Nick at Read more

What I Learned about Chris Pratt's Faith


Most of us have loved Chris Pratt since we first met him as Andy Dwyer on Parks and Rec. Then he made his dramatic debuts in Academy Award Best Picture nominees Moneyball and Zero Dark Thirty. The latter revealed that he could be an action star, so it came as no surprise Read more

Bright Spots

The Importance of Henderson, Tennessee (and all Hometowns)

Posted on by Alex Beene in Assorted Wisdom, Bright Spots, Featured, Misc. Posts | 3 Comments

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“Everybody has to have a hometown, Binghamton’s mine. In the strangely brittle, terribly sensitive make-up of a human being, there is a need for a place to hang a hat or a kind of geographical womb to crawl back into, or maybe just a place that’s familiar because that’s where you grew up.

  “When I dig back through memory cells, I get one particularly distinctive feeling—and that’s one of warmth, comfort and well-being. For whatever else I may have had, or lost, or will find—I’ve still got a hometown. This, nobody’s gonna take away from me.”

—Rod Serling Read more

R.I.P. Maya Angelou

Posted on by Joseph Williams in Books, Bright Spots, Featured | Leave a comment

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Yesterday, at the age of 86, Maya Angelou passed away. I envy those able to attend the poetry reading in heaven last night, because this fragile world lost one of the great ones.

I don’t remember a time growing up in Memphis in which I didn’t know who Maya Angelou was, reading her poems and excerpts of her work. Like many others, I read obituaries of Dr. Angelou yesterday in addition to lists of her most famous quotes as they were collected and as they were shared individually by friends on social media.

She was a woman who wrote more eloquently than most about the power and importance of love, forgiveness, diversity, perseverance, hard work, and faith. For a list of these quotes, I encourage you to go here.

Condoleezza Rice paid tribute with a simple statement, “”I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” was one of the most inspirational books ever written in America — and Maya Angelou was a national treasure. She will be missed but not forgotten.” Many others joined in.

As for me, I returned to the poem that I will eternally view as synonymous with Maya Angelou. NPR played an audio recording of Dr. Angelou reading it herself to pay tribute to her. I encourage you to spend a few minutes to listen to it.

But I will also provide it here for you to read, appreciate, and enjoy.

Rest in peace, Dr. Angelou. And thank you, for everything.

Still I Rise by Maya Angelou

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops,
Weakened by my soulful cries?

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.

Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

Being a Hero to the Orphans of the World

Posted on by Alex Beene in Bright Spots, Entertainment, Entertainment Inspirations, Featured | 2 Comments

Andrew Garfield & WWO Host Salon Event In NYC

When you lose a parent, the first reaction is never one of appreciation. The immediate aftermath is not filled with happiness over all the times you shared and how blessed you were to have that person in your life.

Instead, you tend to focus on what can never be. You think of all the years you have left where you won’t have that parent around to talk to or share memories with moving forward. It’s that notion that leads to most of the heartache you experience when suffering through those first few weeks following a passing. Read more

Why We Love Ole Miss

Posted on by Alex Beene in Assorted Wisdom, Bright Spots, Featured | Leave a comment

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Some family and friends were surprised when I told them I would speak at my mother’s funeral. They would’ve been more startled had I told them I wrote no remarks before stepping up to the podium that day. I wanted everything to come from the heart and the moment.

As I began my short walk to the stage, I had no clue how I was going to begin. And then, it hit me. “Back when I was at Ole Miss, I wrote for the student newspaper,” I said. “The beginning to one of my favorite columns I wrote was ‘Saturday was the worst day of my life. It was on that day my mother asked me to be her friend on Facebook.’” Read more

Happy Birthday, Aphiwe Harston!

Posted on by Palmer Williams in Assorted Wisdom, Bright Spots, Faith, Featured, Misc. Posts | 1 Comment

A3-4In August of 2008, I embarked on a journey that irrevocably changed the heartbeat of my family. It was then that I boarded an airplane in Nashville bound for a rural village in Africa. I would be living and working at a village for children orphaned by AIDS. I was leaving a few months after graduating from Vanderbilt to live at Lily of the Valley for a year. Fully realizing the idealism with which I traveled, I hoped that somehow my naivete would be transformed into what James talked about in Chapter 1, Verse 27 of his epistle – “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

While at Lily, I met a small malnourished boy named Aphiwe. Aphiwe was a sweet five year old little boy who was very sick. He had come to Lily only several months earlier and was a virtual loner. Every morning he would sit outside the window of my room, tending the dirt in my flower bed.

a2-32 Read more

Here’s to the Ordinary Life

Posted on by Warner Russell in Assorted Wisdom, Bright Spots, Faith, Featured, Television | 4 Comments

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Before I start, let me say that I’m a Christian. If it weren’t for my relationship with Jesus, I’d be nothing. What you’re about to read might come across as idolatry, but I firmly believe that the things discussed in this post are all things that happened for a reason and things that God ordained for my good.

The past six or seven months have largely been pretty rough. In late June, my dad was diagnosed with stage three lung cancer. By the time it was discovered, the cancer had already spread to his brain and his lymph nodes. A month later, my mom took a job in Kansas City. We’re pretty close so having her move seven hours away was a shock to my system. In the same few weeks, to a lesser extreme, but still one that had a great effect on my personal well being, I began to grow frustrated with my career and started questioning exactly what I was supposed to “do” for the rest of my life. Needless to say, I was an emotional wreck.

About a month before all of this, my wife and I made two decisions that I wholeheartedly believe helped me from going off the deep end. First, we got a dog. Second, we started watching The Office.

Read more