Eat Your Vegetables: “Roger & Me” (Moore, 1989)

“In a way, the film documents the toppling of an idol, an exposed god.”

Eat Your Vegetables: “Mother Night” (Vonnegut, 1961)

“The novel offers a parable on the cost of losing your ethical identity, or more precisely, the cost of remaining unaware of your moral identity.”

Eat Your Vegetables: Interiors (Woody Allen, 1978)

“Is it better to have no spirituality than its pretentious simulacrum?”

Eat Your Vegetables: “High Noon” (Zinnemann, 1952)

But this film is poignant because Kane’s recent poor performance deserves a lion’s share of the blame.

Eat Your Vegetables: “The Age of Innocence” (Wharton, 1920)

The novel’s tone is thoroughly ironic, as Archer continually misreads as progressive the very traits that consign him to the status quo.

Eat Your Vegetables: “Inglorious Basterds” (Tarantino, 2009)

The thing that I admire most about “Inglorious Basterds” is that it enforces moral responsibility.

Eat Your Vegetables: “The Crying of Lot 49” (Pynchon, 1966)

It’s a kind of mystery novel, so you are tempted to figure out the puzzle that leaves the novel’s central character flummoxed.

Eat Your Vegetables: “The Third Man” (Reed, 1949)

“…the world doesn’t suffer from a lack of villains. In fact, it has too many.”

Eat Your Vegetables: “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”

“I use this film to talk to my students about… the unknown knowns that orient our behavior in ways we’re never entirely cognizant of.”

Eat Your Vegetables: Beowulf

“The poem reminds us of a culture’s fragility, not only through its contents but by its very existence.”

Eat Your Vegetables: “Out of the Past”

In film noir, you never win: you just see how long you can stave off losing.

Eat Your Vegetables: “Singin’ in the Rain”

“Singin’ in the Rain” is glorious because it revels in its own artificiality.

Eat Your Vegetables: “Citizen Kane”

Let’s work with the assumption that “Citizen Kane” says something essential about being an American.

Eat Your Vegetables: “Gulliver’s Travels”

Jonathan Swift’s satire helps us see what’s wrong not only with the world but with ourselves.

Eat Your Vegetables: “The Ambassadors”

Holbein’s painting warns us against seeking complete knowledge as well as succumbing to fatal pessimism.

Of Shakespeare and Conspiracies: The Real Stakes of the “Who Was Shakespeare?” Debate

The debate regarding Shakespeare’s authorship can teach us how to think critically about conspiracy theories.