MORADI | After Pittsburgh, the Pain We Share

I grew up going to Quran school at my small, non-denominational mosque in a Virginia business center squished between a Days Inn and a dusty storage facility. It’s been vandalized and threatened on multiple occasions. Most recently, after the shooting in San Bernardino, California that famously triggered then-candidate Trump’s Muslim ban proposal, the masjid received a threat via voicemail. “You all will be sorry,” the imam claimed the voicemail said. “You all will be killed.”

I flinch writing those words.

A Haunted House Oozing Excess: Crimson Peak

Guillermo Del Toro is a talented and visionary filmmaker. There is an earnestness and an excitement to his imagination which comes across clearly on screen — his films are like pages straight out of a sketchbook. But his Achilles’ heel has always been his interest in his production design, fantastical sets and beloved monsters — to the point of sacrificing emotion and character development. There is often an abundance of weird creatures in his work which always threaten to overwhelm his provocative ideas, however, Crimson Peak, surprisingly, contains none of them. A few ghouls and skeletons aside, this film is devoid of any fauns, demons, kaijus or aliens.