1. The Shining Girls. I liked it, not quite loved it. I wish I could read a story that was as if The Shining Girls and Gun Machine had a baby. Because I feel like there’s something really important about Gun Machine‘s idea that any city has any number of maps, of ways people understand it, and that, when someone is time-traveling, he is, indeed, making his own map on an axis most of us don’t get to experience. Anyway, it’s pretty good. I’m just not sure the author’s map of Chicago-land quite matches up with mine.
2. The new Superman movie. I loved it. LOVED it. There are two really alarming parts, though. One is when Pa Kent encourages people to hide from a tornado under an overpass. NOOOOO, Pa Kent, noooo! That’s an incredibly dangerous place to be in a tornado. The second is the part where Superman is talking to a priest and the camera frames him and Jesus in the same shot, you know, in case you didn’t get the parallels. People in our audience groaned. But other than that, I thought it was a really lovely meditation on parenting and finding your way in the universe and all that jazz. It had a lovely, big heart at its center, which I was a little afraid about. I mean, the best superhero movies lately have been about brooding or snarky superheros. So, I was worried about how a sincere, good guy might play. But I have to say, I think they did a really, really good job. I found myself really, deeply moved by the depictions of loving parents and a guy who would have been a good guy even if he weren’t Superman. I kind of didn’t know how hungry I was for a story like that again.