My Favorite Film of 2022: The Breaking Point (1950)

| March 10th, 2023

The Academy Awards are this Sunday, and normally I would be publishing a lengthy piece on my favorite films of the year at the end of the week. (With Maciej publishing the day before.) But this year, quite frankly, I forgot. And I could also make the argument I did not love any films released in 2022, though I’ll mention two below, that I’m excited to revisit.

Having returned to the academic world of Cinema Studies, the discipline in which I received my BA 18 years ago, I found myself in a constant process of cinematic discovery, beginning with my preparations last summer. So today I am sharing my favorite of those discoveries, a film I consider landmark, the Michael Curtiz/John Garfield collaboration, The Breaking Point.

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How to Approach the Next 11 Games (A Twitter Thread)

| October 14th, 2022

A thread explaining why the rest of this season is going to be a tough watch and why you should emotionally detach yourself from the remaining 11 games for the sake of yourself and those you love.

The Bears didn’t try to win this year. From the moment Poles and Eberflus were brought in, they made it clear with their moves that winning games in 2022 was not a priority.

They didn’t spend on OL or at WR. They traded Khalil Mack to clear money in 2023.

You can criticize that strategy all you like but that’s clearly the strategy: lose in 2022 and then use the full slate of (high) picks and copious cash of 2023 to dramatically remake the complexion of the roster.

The Bears look like they’re “close” to winning because (a) they won a game in a monsoon against a terrible QB and (b) they have played 2 of the 4 worst teams in the league through 6 weeks. Their performances have shown they’re in same class with Hou, DC, Pitt, etc.

Bears next three are at Belichick, at Parsons, home Dolphins.

This team is going to be 2-7 when the Lions come to town and are favored at Soldier Field.

By then, apathy will have settled in across the whole of the fan base.

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Training Camp Questions for a Season Lacking Urgency (Not Import)

| July 18th, 2022

Training camp for the 2022 Chicago is now next week, and thus this seems the appropriate time to think about the questions that will need answering over the coming month. Do these questions require urgent reply? Not necessarily. 2022 is not an urgent season. But just because it’s not an urgent season – a season defined by lofty expectations – does not mean it lacks import.

Here are some questions worth considering.


Question #1. Can the offense resemble a professional unit? 

Dannehy did a nice job detailing the first-year struggles of this offense historically, and it would be unfair not to expect those same troubles here. The offensive coordinator has never done the job. The quarterback is on his third offense in three years. The team is going need solid production from a third-round wide receiver and a fifth-round left tackle. None of these elements are dealbreakers but they portend a period of struggle.


Question #2. Are the kids alright in the secondary?

The Bears are assuming Jaylon Johnson and Eddie Jackson will be just fine. (Jackson back into a defense that fits his skills is a huge bonus.) But if the same can be said for rookie Kyler Gordon and Jaquan Brisker, the secondary goes from one of the team’s weakest units in 2021 to one of its strengths in 2022. There will be a lot of bullshit emanating from training camp about young players. There always is. But the narrative arc of a professional career usually begins that first summer. And expectations are high for Gordon and Brisker.


Question #3. How does the offensive line shake out?

This is probably the most pertinent question facing the Bears this summer because, right now, everybody is just guessing. Is Braxton Jones going to anchor the blindside? Is Larry Borom going to start over Teven Jenkins? If Borom usurps Jenkins, does that kick Jenkins inside? No franchise wants to enter camp with this much uncertainty across the whole of their offensive line but that is where the 2022 Chicago Bears find themselves.

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