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‘Janet Planet’ comes into orbit: Annie Baker’s debut film, about to open in Valley, features performances and input from some area residents
06-27-2024 7:14 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

After generating some local news in 2022 when scenes were filmed in a number of locations around the Valley, “Janet Planet,” the debut film by celebrated playwright Annie Baker, made its deThursday.The movie, first screened last summer at the...

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The long view: Reflecting on 30 years in local journalism
07-05-2024 7:33 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

In the early 1990s, I answered an ad for a reporting job at the Gazette. I had editorial experience — I’d worked as a copywriter, a copy editor, and a proofreader — and I liked writing, but I’d never worked for a newspaper, unless you counted a few...


Back to the screen: Amherst authors’ popular ‘Spiderwick Chronicles’ gets a new streaming adaptation
05-06-2024 5:23 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Call it an encore performance.“The Spiderwick Chronicles,” the bestselling series of fantasy books by Amherst writers Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black, has just been turned into a streaming series on The Roku Channel.That comes 16 years after a feature...


A workplace from hell: Amherst filmmaker Matt Heron-Duranti is part of the team behind independent film “Another Day in America”
04-01-2024 11:46 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

There’s been a lot written about the problems that have plagued many American workplaces in the wake of the pandemic, from employees insisting on continuing to work from home to offices that have mirrored the polarization and social conflicts plaguing...


A tale of murderous indifference: ‘The Zone of Interest’ offers a view of the Holocaust as chilling as its architects
03-24-2024 2:03 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Hannah Arendt famously coined the term “the banality of evil” in her book on Adolph Eichmann’s trial in Israel in 1963, where the former Nazi official, a key organizer of the Holocaust, presented himself as a bureaucrat who was “just doing his job” in...


‘You don’t look like a doctor’: Documentary film looks at the biases and challenges Black women physicians face 
02-03-2024 10:52 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

Dr. Khama Ennis had come a long way in her medical career.Until 2022, the Amherst resident had spent about two decades in emergency medicine, including a number of years as chief of emergency medicine at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton, as...


Hitting it big for wrong reasons: In ‘American Fiction,’ Black writer’s pastiche hailed as authentic
01-17-2024 7:09 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Though it had only an initial limited theatrical release, and did not appear until December, “American Fiction” has already popped up on a number of critics’ “best films of 2023” lists, and the movie has been nominated for a slew of awards.The buzz is...


Trailer for ‘The Holdovers,’ to be released this fall, features recognizable locations
08-16-2023 8:06 PM

By BELLA LEVAVI

With “The Holdovers” trailer giving them a sneak peak, Franklin County residents are likely to recognize many familiar locations when the film is released in November.Many scenes were filmed at Deerfield Academy and Northfield Mount Hermon School,...


From schism to civil rights: “The Niagara Movement” explores debate over how Black Americans could best overcome
05-05-2023 8:54 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

In the United States, the early 20th century has often been portrayed as a time of hope and excitement, in which the nation’s growing industrial power, improvements in mass communications, and advances in technology and science heralded a new era of...


Three in Valley with Guggenheim Fellowships
05-01-2023 11:15 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

NORTHAMPTON — A University of Massachusetts professor, a filmmaker who grew up in Amherst, and a Northampton philosophy professor are among nine people in Massachusetts who have won Guggenheim Fellowships.Gretchen Holbrook Gerzina, who teaches English...


Powerful ‘Dreams’: Pelham native’s film about a driven weightlifter turns heads at Sundance
02-23-2023 8:45 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

The idea first came to Elijah Bynum about four years ago when he was exercising in a California gym and noticed an ultra-serious bodybuilder, a guy who was “radiating intensity” as he went through his paces.“There was this really intense energy about...

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