1. LOST IN TRANSLATION
Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson are lonely not-so-innocents abroad in Sofia Coppola’s brilliantly subtle tale of love and detachment.
2. GILMORE GIRLS
We so hate this precious WB series. We hate the impossibly clever Rory and Lorelai. We hate that damn Sookie. And by hate we mean looove. Help us…please.
3. RUPERT FROM ‘SURVIVOR: PEARL ISLANDS’
The answer to these two questions: (1) Who’s our early favorite contestant on CBS’ reality juggernaut? (2) What does Hagrid look like naked?
4. THE KNOWN WORLD, BY EDWARD P. JONES
This searing novel of the antebellum South tackles the thorny topic of blacks who owned slaves.
5. IT STILL MOVES, MY MORNING JACKET
What music might sound like if Neil Young had grown up in Kentucky drinking bourbon, reading Burroughs, and listening to Beefheart.
6. THE NAMESAKE, by Jhumpa Lahiri
Or, Will Success Spoil Gogol Ganguli? East is East, West is West, and clever the twain shall meet in the Pulitzer-winning author’s astonishingly self-assured debut novel.
When a drifter (Jared Leto) stabs Ross in a bar… Seriously, how could we not mention the NBC series that’s been on longer than some networks?
8. RUSSIAN ARK
DVD is the perfect medium to catch this absorbing single-take (!) stroll through the Hermitage and 200 years of Russian history. No, really.
9. ALISON LOHMAN IN ‘MATCHSTICK MEN’
More than matching Nic Cage’s twitchy fireworks is Lohman’s smart and nimble performance: outright scene thievery, if you catch her grift.
10. THE SIMPSONS: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON
”Smithers, what new DVD has those simpering fans so excited? The Simpsons, eh? Excellent.”