Is ShotSpotter Working In Milwaukee?, Escapist Cinema, An Argument Against Time Management

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Milwaukee contracts with a tech company to detect gunfire in high-risk neighborhoods. But does it actually decrease gun violence? The movie musical La La Land was a big winner at the Golden Globes. We look at why escapist cinema is more popular in challenging times. And we find out why focusing on time management might make us less effective, and more stressed-out.

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  • Assessing The Effectiveness Of ShotSpotter

    Milwaukee uses a gunshot detection system called ShotSpotter, but it remains unclear whether it is reducing gun violence and leading to more arrests and convictions.

  • Lala Land And The Rise Of Escapist Film

    The starry-eyed musical Lala Land with Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone set a record over the weekend at the Golden Globes. The movie, which came just a month after a divisive and tumultuous election, was centered around a boy-meets-girl story and was a nostalgic take on old Hollywood. We talk to a film critic about the popularity of escapist film in tough political times.

  • Critic Says Escapist Movies Are Here To Stay

    During the Golden Globes, the musical “La La Land” set a record, winning all seven awards for which it was nominated. The movie has gotten attention for more than its star-studded cast and nod to old Hollywood musicals — the timing of this hit has gotten film critics talking. The musical has a sense of romance and optimism at its heart, and it hit theaters just a month after a bitter and divisive election.

    Film critic Milos Stehlik said “La La Land” is answering a need for escapism.

    “(The musical offers an) escape into a complete, artificial world that somehow makes sense only on its own, at a time when our world doesn’t seem to make too much sense,” Stehlik said.

    “La La Land” isn’t the only escapist movie popular right now. The critic said the majority of movies playing commercially and being honored at industry award ceremonies are escapist.

    “Very few of them, except perhaps for ‘Moonlight,’ offer any kind of a sense of connectedness, of trying to understand other people, all of those kinds of themes have really gone away, and all the movies we’re going towards is this complete sense of unreality,” he said. He cited “La La Land”, “Arrival” and “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” as examples of these popular escapist movies

    Stehlik compared the escapist movie trend today to what films were popular in Nazi Germany.

    “If you drew a parallel about what’s happening in terms of movies and audiences today, the closest era that I would say would be Germany in the 1930s,” he said. While many people think of films during this era as being war movies or patriotic films, the critic said the success of the German movie-making machine was complete escapism.

    While “La La Land” ignored the difficult political and social situations of present times, Meryl Streep’s Golden Globes speech as she accepted a lifetime achievement award was a direct response to these realities. Stehlik said Hollywood isn’t all about escapism – there are some very expensive, globally marketed movies, but there’s also a small percentage of movies that in some way try to understand the human condition.

    “I think that those movies will try to address … the kinds of both emotional issues, social issues that the public faces,” he said.

    He added he imagines there will be a lot more musicals made in the wake of “La La Land’s” success.

  • Why Time Management Fails Us

    Time management experts have been giving us lots of advice on how to make the most efficient use of time in our busy lives. A guest columnist says there’s just one problem: it doesn’t work, and makes us feel more stressed out.

Episode Credits

  • Rob Ferrett Host
  • Veronica Rueckert Host
  • Judith Siers-Poisson Producer
  • Haleema Shah Producer
  • Rob Ferrett Producer
  • Scott Gordon Guest
  • Milos Stehlik Guest
  • Oliver Burkeman Guest

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