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The KSR Pick List


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At this point, most everyone knows about the hilarity of FX’s show “The League.” The comedy loosely based around a group of friend’s fantasy football league is, when firing on all cylinders, the best non-“Curb Your Enthusiasm” comedy on television. But what you might not know is that one of the stars of the show, Mark Duplass, has also become my movie muse as of late. Via his Twitter account (@markduplass), I have been able to learn about a whole host of movies I knew nothing of before his recommendation. Duplass started a little over a month ago recommending one movie per day via his Twitter account, all of which are available on Netflix streaming. I am far from caught up, but via his recommendations, have seen a ton of movies that I would never otherwise see.

So that got me to thinking. With such a huge community of UK fans here, why not attempt to do the same thing in this forum. So what follows is the first installment in what I hope will be a semi-regular set of recommendations as to Twitter accounts, internet articles, books and movies that you might want to check out if you haven’t yet. I don’t claim that any are real secrets, but I love recommendations of others and in an attempt to write about something that does not involve Mitch Barnhart, Joker Phillips or Doron Lamb, it seems like a worthy idea. Feel free to comment on any of the suggestions below, or give your own for possible inclusion in future additions. The best suggestions (with commentary as to why) will be added to a reader list for the next edition. So without further ado:

TWITTER ACCOUNTS:

As an initial matter, I am skipping over all UK-related accounts and focusing solely on those from other life paths. Four for today:

@fivethirtyeight — As we get farther into this political season, the news is going to likely overwhelm us all and make everyone want to turn all pundits out of our lives. But sober analysis is still important and this account run by political analyst Nate Silver provides the best interpretation of the political news that I have found.

@elkpga — You may not care about professional golf, and in reality until Tiger gets good again you shouldn’t. However funny and clever people in all walks of life should be celebrated. Former PGA golfer Steve Elkington is hilarious and worth following, regardless of how you feel about the sport.

@thesurfreport — If you watch a lot, or for that matter any, television then this is a must-follow. The self-proclaimed tv “guru” reminds me of what is on television every night and gives good tidbits of things worth watching that you might not know exist.

@mengus22 — No man on Earth tweets more than Mark Ennis. But there are also very few men who are more passionate about college sports and who add more insights to them (especially college football). He bleeds Cardinal red and will flood your timeline, but he also thinks man of the same things you do and writes in a witty, worthwhile style.

@kentuckybadgirl — I was introduced to this Twitter account by (who else) Drew Franklin. I have never met Lauren (the former cast member on “Bad Girls Club”) and I am not sure if/when I will. But from afar, she entertains me a great deal. She lives a life on the edge and seems always one step from either monumental fun or a complete disaster.

MOVIES

BIG FAN — Starring Patton Oswalt, this film is a bizarre look inside the world of sports fandom, specifically that borne by radio call-in shows. The main character calls into a sports talk show every night and develops rivalries with other fans that they think are for fun, but he believes are real. Bizarre and odd…but very entertaining.

THE PERFECT CANDIDATE — Documentary that follows the 1994 Virginia Senate Race between Chuck Robb and Oliver North. For reasons that aren’t clear after the film, North allowed these filmmakers behind the scenes access to his campaign and what follows is the best on-camera look of what an American political campaign really looks like in the trenches that I have ever seen.

NETWORK — Network was always one of those movies that I saw on Top 100 Movies of All Time lists but never bothered to actually watch. But last week I did, and it is one of the better satires I have ever seen. People in television are universally odd, a fact I have learned in the past couple of years. While this movie was made in 1976, the characters fit archetypes still in place today.

IN THE BEDROOM — The most under-appreciated great movie of the 21st Century. Two parents deal with the murder of their son and in the process, make decisions that are hard to imagine. I can still remember the first time I saw this in the theater and how powerful it was to me. A MUST-SEE if you missed it the first time through.

ARTICLES

The Last American Hero is Junior Johnson — I can only dream to write this well. Tom Wolfe goes into Nascar country in 1965 and writes about driver Junior Johnson and his effect on stockcar fans. The picture he paints is the most vivid I have ever read and even though I first encountered it over a decade ago, it is still my favorite piece of sportswriting ever.

The Perils of Pauline — Possibly the most brutal takedown of another person’s work that I have ever laid my eyes upon. A book reviewer named Renata Alder reviews a collection of movie reviews by a critic named Pauline Kael. To be fair, I had never heard of Kael or her reviews when I read this piece. But she was apparently the most famous movie critic of her day and in this book review, Adler eviscerates her as thoroughly as one could ever imagine. Before you ever write a piece critical of anyone else, read this to see how it can (and should) be done.

The Man Who Crashed the World: I will freely admit that I know next to nothing about finance or how the nation’s economic system truly works. But when I can read something that I understand on the subject, I find it fascinating. Michael Lewis’s take on the collapse of AIG gives the best short take on why we had/have an economic crisis that I have yet found.

BOOKS:

COLUMBINE — You remember the event and how shocking it was to the country. But what you might not know is just how much of the coverage of the Columbine tragedy ended up being completely false. Following up what happened in Littleton, Colorado five years later, the author showcases how little we actually know about what happened that day.

AMONG THE THUGS — One of my favorite all-time sports books details author Bill Buford’s attempt to learn about soccer hooligans. In an attempt to understand their behavior, he follows a group of English fans and ends up getting so wrapped up in their culture, that he finds himself acting as a thug as well. GREAT storytelling about a fan culture that even makes UK fans look tepid.

THE KNOW IT ALL — An author attempts to read the entire Encyclopedia Britannica set from start to finish in a quest to learn everything there is to know. AJ Jacobs is hilarious and he takes what would seem to be the most boring project in existence and make it extremely entertaining. And it will remind you that at one point, we actually had something called an “encyclopedia” (do they still make those?).

That is all. I am interested in any comments/suggestions you have as well. And if not, just complain that there is no news about Patterson or Lucas and “hey, I thought this was a UK sports site!”

Article written by Matt Jones

38 responses to “The KSR Pick List”

  1. ktmiln2

    Among the Thugs is one of the best, if not the best, sports book ever, and I am not even a soccer fan.

  2. GoCats2010

    TLDR, just kidding, already follow Elk, but Ennis gets retweeted all the time on my TL. Patton Oswalt is a genius…the Sklars helped turn him on to sports.

    HENDERSON

  3. ktmiln2

    I’d also recommend Summer of ’42, although the book is based off of the movie.

  4. he says she

    In The Bedroom? Really?? Extremely slow-paced and used ‘fading to black’ technique like it was going out of style. You knew the father was going to kill him — we were thinking just get it over with already.

    If you want a really good slow-paced movie: Sergio Leone’s “Once Upon A Time in The West”. Henry Fonda as the ultimate bad guy.

  5. ktmiln2

    Watch “The Hole” with Keira Knightly(?) Anyways, one of the best suspense/thriller movies I’ve seen in a while. Plus the British accents give it a nice touch of pretentiousness.

  6. raunchy rhonda

    clicked the link to the michael lewis article, you can’t read it all online. suck.

  7. gdub

    You can meet that bad girl at the Hooters on Richmond Road.

  8. smh

    I’d rather follow Perez Hilton on twitter than that douche Mark Ennis. And why do I need to follow him when EVERY person I follow retweets every thing the guy says and I have to see his bald/ red bearded mug.

  9. B-Rad

    Kentucky.com has a new article up making it seem like they have decided to renovate rupp.. no mention of luxury boxes.

  10. Evan in Northern KY

    Know It All is very good. Year of Living Biblically is even better.

  11. Old School

    Duke has to be the most clean cut team in the country. I don’t think they have a player with a tat. Our team looks like the Crips compared to Duke.

  12. Pabloco

    In The Bedroom has a KY connection, however. Mapother (Richard, in the movie) is from Louisville.

  13. el rubio

    Amongst the Thugs is quality!

  14. kyrgaines

    Really liking this Ohio St./Duke game. Not sure I’ve ever watched a game where Vitale is mostly quiet. Could be that Ohio St. is beating the brakes off of his Duke team tonight. Clearly Duke is NOT a top 5 team….. at least not yet. Very impressed with Ohio St. though.

  15. Jorts for City Commissioner

    Duh … Star Wars.

  16. The Original Amy

    I follow Kentucky bad girl because I watch all of the seasons of bad girls club and she was on there (Least favorite, however) and I will say I was on board with your little idea until you recommended she was followed. Give us good suggestions not train wrecks!!!

  17. Jonathon Weightman

    On twitter please follow @textsfrmbennett you will thank me for the hilarity later. Warning the language is pretty filthy.

  18. Bumpy

    Columbine is a great book…I endorse that as well

  19. Blue 4 Life

    I wish duke would lose this game by 30+.

  20. Hartline

    Please Not Mengus

  21. BleedingBlue79

    +1 on the suggestion of @Mengus22. Yeah he’s a Card fan, but he’s not a militantly unreasonable d’bag about it (see @RobJones502). He might take a shot at Cal or UK from time to time, but he’s just as quick to be critical or self-deprecating about UofL if it’s warranted. Anyway, the guy really does know his stuff, about sports and in general it seems, but if nothing else, his commentary/take on things is usually pretty funny. Anyway, follow him…don’t follow him…whatever, just my $0.02.

  22. Gil-the-Thrill

    TED Talks is a great website/forum regardless… this may not be the correct forum, but I find Howard Kunstler’s interpretation of modern day American Suburbia to be very clear and eye-opening. He keeps it simple and is funny…

    http://www.ted.com/talks/james_howard_kunstler_dissects_suburbia.html

  23. osdinnky

    Nice shout out to Among The Thugs….

  24. GummyBear

    Book recomendation: “A Confederacy of Dunces” – It’s a romp through early 60s New Orleans’ French Quarter with the main character who is basically the Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons, only less ambitious and more obnoxious and condensending.

  25. bush league

    @dadboner is the only twitter account worth following. thank me later.

  26. Will Jacobs

    http://twitter.com/?lang=en&logged_out=1#!/TheJackIrvin

    The funniest guy on twitter. Some depressed dude makes fun of himself.

  27. Will Jacobs
  28. 3 fan

    Check out “American Assasin” by Vince Flynn. Great read

  29. NashvilleCat

    @mental_floss is a great follow on twitter. They send out trivia tidbits, quizzes, and links to articles that are great. I highly recommend.

  30. 7aintenough

    Good call on following Nate Silver. I am a student at UK and recently used an article of his for a homework assignment. He is a really smart guy, and his stuff makes a lot sense. Fairly helpful

  31. eddy

    Bassist from Five Finger Death Punch is from Lexington and a big UK basketball fan…a good follow: @5FDPChrisKael

  32. TS

    Wright Thompson, columnist for Grantland, writes articles that paint pictures like Cawood used to do when broadcasting Kentucky games. This article about Les Miles is the best article about ANYTHING I have ever read:
    http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/eticket/story?page=111103/LesMiles

  33. thedenimthatsinem

    Movie – Green Street Hooligans. It has Elijah Wood in it, but it has Hunnam from SOA to make up for it. Thank me later.

  34. CatsfanfromCincy

    Podcast – This American Life – Weekly show from WBEZ Chicago available online and on itunes for free. One of the most honest and poignant takes on current events, both controversial hot topics as well as interesing/weird happenings. Sometimes funny, sometimes political, but always incredibly interesting and entertaining.

  35. Jen

    Book: A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard then think about the Penn St Guy and Syracuse Guy and wonder WTF is wrong with people!!!

  36. blueblood

    good idea matt keep the movies coming

  37. macon_volfan

    @macon_volfan is a GREAT twitter follow!

  38. zigzag

    Movies:
    Attack The Block. Aliens invade the London projects, are fought by a teenage gang, and is pretty much everything that Super 8 should have been. Bonus points for British gang slang and the big fella from Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz playing a weed dealer. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1478964/

    Hesher: The 3rd Rock from the Sun kid is the bomb in this indie flick. Has the kind of ending you would expect from this type of film, but I enjoy the F.U. metal head portrayal. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1403177/

    Articles:
    The Saturday Night’s Children series that Megh Wright posts every Tuesday on the comedy site Splitsider is always enjoyable for a SNL fan. I think I wasted two days at work going through the series after I found it. Let’s you know what the former cast members are doing and has clips of some of their best sketches.http://splitsider.com/tag/saturday-nights-children