Mina Tavakoli

  • Diary of a Reducer

    ONE STURDY WAY TO UNDERSTAND WRITER and director Henry Bean is as a specialist in the study of extremely bad behavior. His best subjects are the worst: self-hating havoc-wreakers, or the “I Suffered Complicated Trauma and Now the World Has to Deal With It” type. Populating his catalogue of asshole picaresques—rich with vicious couplings, drunken confrontations, alfresco autoeroticism—are a secretly Jewish neo-Nazi played by a skinhead Ryan Gosling (The Believer, 2001), a sledgehammer-and-baseball-bat-wielding vandal (Noise, 2007), a sexy serial murderess (Basic Instinct 2, 2006), and the

  • fiction July 01, 2022

    Jock Itch

    A FRIEND OF MINE from what feels like a lifetime ago once introduced me to her uncle during dinner at her mom’s house. That he was avuncular in all the classic ways—huge, meek, seemed like he had a life defined by extreme silence—was mostly unremarkable, but what lingered from our meeting was his decision to forcibly share his two clearest, greatest fantasies with a table largely made up of children. The first, he said, extending a finger over some entreé meat, was to meet supermodel Christie Brinkley before he faced the grave. The other—up went another finger, eyes and heart fat with conviction—was