Arts & Life

Stories from KUNC, NPR & others on Life, Religion, Arts, Culture, Movies, Books, Theater, Entertainment & more...

Magnolia Pictures

A hand in a black glove fits an arrow to a bow and adds some kind of metal cable to the rig. The archer is Halla (Halldóra Geirharðsdóttir), and she has an ingenious and illegal purpose: she’s bringing down high tension power lines in order to sabotage Iceland’s drive to industrialize. For her, it’s ultimately a matter of climate change, and Halle is not messing around. She’s a 40-something woman who bounds over the Icelandic tundra like a mountain sheep – she even hides under a full sheep carcass when the police helicopters hunt for her. She knows how to tuck herself under a lip of tundra or slide around a rock cairn to stay out of sight.


The Invisibles puts you off-balance from the start by looking at four survivors of the Holocaust, who as teenagers managed to live through the war right in the city of Berlin — a place Goebbels had declared free of Jews.

Brad Wickham
Jackie Hai / KUNC

For Brad Wickham, Frozen Dead Guy Days is a year-round event.

The three-day annual festival in Nederland features coffin races, ice carvings and a polar plunge to celebrate the frozen corpse of Bredo Morstoel, better known around town as Grandpa Bredo.

As Morstoel's caretaker, Wickham has driven up to see him every two weeks for the past five years, to add more dry ice and make sure he's still a comfortable minus 110 degrees Celsius.

Teresa Isasi / Focus Features

It seems that every two or three years, Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi puts out a masterpiece. Both A Separation and The Salesman won Oscars as Best Foreign Language Film. He's honored around the world, and so far he's figured out how to steer through the dangerous waters of the Iranian government. For his new film, though, Farhadi went to Spain, where he enlisted actors Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem to play the leads in a film that's at various times a family drama, a mystery and a thriller — and it's good at all three.

Brewtography Project

The closest that Travis Rupp came to getting fired, he says, was the time he tried to make chicha. The recipe for the Peruvian corn-based beer, cobbled together from bits of pre-Incan archaeological evidence, called for chewed corn partially fermented in spit. So, Rupp’s first task had been to convince his colleagues to gather round a bucket and offer up their chompers for the cause.

Jenise Jensen / Breckenridge Creative Arts

A huge wooden troll will be reincarnated in a Colorado ski town, although it's unclear what it will look like or where it will sit.

The Summit Daily reported Friday that Breckenridge officials have a deal with Danish artist Thomas Dambo to rebuild his troll this spring. It was erected beside a trail last summer for a festival, but it was so popular that nearby homeowners complained about all the foot traffic. It was taken down in November.

Dance Express
Dance Express

In 1989, Mary Elizabeth Lenahan helped found Dance Express. The Fort Collins troupe was unique particularly in its focus on being accessible to everyone. Now, as the company celebrates its 30th anniversary, the program is looking at its next steps.

Dance Express was created to give people with disabilities such as Down syndrome or cerebral palsy a way to access to the arts and performance opportunities, Lenahan said.


Short films are like short stories; if they’re good, they’re as rich and complicated as long films and novels, but they compress things; there’s no space for excess or dithering. The setting must anchor the film right away; characters and events can’t develop slowly – they must be on time and ready at the giddy up.

Sony Pictures

The maker of Never Look Away, German director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck probably has the longest name of any filmmaker in the world. At 6’9” he’s also probably the tallest filmmaker in the world, and his new film is one of the biggest movies to come along in years. The film is no special effects action extravaganza; it’s the story of an artist, but the movie takes in how art and life interact, as well as the history of Germany from 1940 to about 1980. In the spirit of the title, the film never looks away from the horrors of the Nazi era.

African wild dogs
Denver Zoo

Love is in the air on Valentine's Day, even in the most unlikely of places.

At the Denver Zoo, Hollie Colahan helps make sure that nature takes its course. Colahan is the vice president of Animal Care at the Denver Zoo. She's also the Species Survival Plan coordinator for lions for the national Association of Zoos and Aquariums.