Feedback: 'Birth of a Nation' brings truth and art to life

Regarding "Separating the Art From the Artist" [Oct. 11]. I am finding it hard to accept the apparent rebuff at the box office of "The Birth of a Nation," particularly after seeing the film. It is an exceptional piece of artistry and a vital portrait of our American experience in trying to live up to ideals we say we have. No one should miss it. What troubles me is this: Are we being particular here with this extraordinary film because it's about the racist curse we are struggling to erase from our country and its director is black? The curse is there. Go look at it. Do we have the courage to do that?

Hal Holbrook


Beverly Hills


Unbelievably interesting, nuanced and provocative piece about the controversy and complex issues surrounding one's experience while viewing "The Birth of a Nation." Stellar review.

Michele Adashek

Los Angeles


Bob Dylan, a Nobel musician

Regarding “Coverage of Bob Dylan’s Nobel Prize” [Oct. 15]. In the immediate wake of the most-deserved Nobel Prize announcement, Randy Lewis and Mikael Wood delivered great pieces on Dylan. One often-overlooked and perhaps surprising aspect of Mr. Dylan’s enormous influence was on Brian Wilson, who almost certainly brought in Van Dyke Parks as a lyricist inspired by and challenged by Dylan.

David Leaf

Los Angeles


If Jim Morrison was alive, I wonder what he would think about rock's second-greatest poet receiving the Nobel prize and playing Las Vegas?

Dan Salomon

Mission Hills



I laughed out loud (which doesn't happen very often).  All of us who lived through the 1960s loved Bob Dylan at some level or another.  I've seen reporters, music critics etc. asking about what this lyric or that lyric meant. I remember him laughing and saying, "They don't mean anything, stop wasting your time trying to figure out what any of them means!"  This says it all as far as I'm concerned.  We are awarding  the Nobel Prize  in literature to a song writer who admits it's a bunch of gibberish.

Tim Buchanan



Setting the record straight on Yusuf

Please stop repeating lies about Yusuf/Cat Stevens ["Feedback: Boos and Cheers for Yusuf/Cat Stevens," Oct. 16]. A letter incorrectly stated "He publicly and repeatedly agreed that author Saman Rushdie must be murdered for writing a novel he and the Ayotolah found offensive." This is not true.

Blaze Kistler

La Crescenta

Tyler Perry's perfect timing

Regarding "The Perry Golden Touch" [Oct. 16]. In this PC-friendly, comedy-hostile time, if Tyler Perry were just starting out, I doubt he would be so successful. Thank goodness he started before all the Politically Correct hysteria. You can bet I'll be among the first to see: "Tyler's Perry Boo: A Madea Halloween."

David Tulanian

Los Angeles

Just drips or a stroke of genius?

Regarding “The drips of a famed artist?” [Oct. 11]. If this painting can be proved to actually have been done by Jackson Pollock, it could sell for $100 million.  P.T. Barnum is having a good laugh. 

Mike Kirwan


A lot of Waters under a bridge

Regarding: "Waters Wants A Bridge, Not a Wall" [Oct. 13]. Roger Waters concluded that all the world's conflicts devolve from us vs. them thinking, then begins heaping contempt and loathing on the half of this country that doesn't share his ideological bent.  It seems Waters seeks not to build bridges but rather to demonize those who lack the great wisdom to embrace his world view.

Stephen Quinn

Huntington Beach


I attended the Desert Trip Concert last weekend. The Who sang on Sunday, preceding Roger Waters. They sang all of the songs that we grew up with; no political agenda, no homage to this group or that, many tributary messages to Keith Moon and John Entwistle, introduced Zak Starkey. They were perfect-played to the crowd.

Nancy Feigelson



The epic performances at Desert Trip weren't the only thing nostalgic. Camping barefoot in the glorious green grass, covered in desert dust, I looked down at my filthy feet and thought, I am a flower child once more!

Beth Signer



It is time for the times music pundits to stop the ageism inherent in their writings about older (instead of "old") musicians. The artist's performing at desert trip transcend age, their music will be around long after the hit makers of today. They changed the world with their music and their cultural influence going back to the '60s and '70s. Can you imagine any of today's pop stars taking the stage in their 70s, and not looking and sounding ridiculous?

Lynn Leatart

Sherman Oaks