DVDs have enabled us to see movies from some unlikely places. Our critic at large says some of the best films he's seen come from South Korea: the crime drama Memories of Murder and the political thriller The President's Last Bang are two examples, based on true stories.
To some, Detroit may be a symbol of urban decay; but to journalist Charlie LeDuff, it's home. In Detroit: An American Autopsy, he says the city's heart beats on. "We're still here trying to reconstruct the great thing we once had," he tells Fresh Air's Dave Davies.
Dexter Filkins recently broke the story that top Afghan officials have been receiving bags of cash from Iran. The New York Times foreign correspondent tells Terry Gross that the situation in Afghanistan is becoming increasingly dire for both soldiers and journalists.
After 44 years as a newspaper man, former Washington Post executive editor Leonard Downie Jr. makes his debut as a fiction writer. His new novel, Rules Of The Game, features an investigative reporter on the beat of a hotly contested presidential election.
A new film of Robert Penn Warren's novel All the King's Men stars Sean Penn as political boss Willie Stark, a role that won Broderick Crawford an Oscar in 1949. The remake also features Kate Winslet, Mark Ruffalo, Patricia Clarkson, and James Gandolfini. It's directed by Steven Zaillian, who won his own Oscar for the screenplay of Schindler's List.
Journalist T. Christian Miller of The Los Angeles Times talks about his new book, Blood Money: Wasted Billions, Lost Lives, and Corporate Greed in Iraq. Miller writes, "In almost every way, the rebuilding has fallen short."
Journalist Adam Roberts of The Economist talks about his new book, The Wonga Coup: Guns, Thugs and a Ruthless Determination to Create Mayhem in an Oil-Rich Corner of Africa. Roberts tells the story of a group of mercenaries and merchants who hatched a plan to topple the dictatorship of Equatorial Guinea in order to reap the profits from the country's oil resources.
Deputy Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction Ginger Cruz oversees the audit, inspection and investigation operations established to prevent waste, fraud and abuse in the U.S. reconstruction of Iraq. Cruz just returned from Iraq.
The lobbying scandal that engulfed the career of Jack Abramoff and threatens that of Rep. Tom DeLay was first reported two years ago, by reporter Susan Schmidt. Her colleague, R. Jeffrey Smith, is covering the DeLay angle of the story.
Suketu Mehta's new book is Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found. It's an exploration of Mehta's hometown, where he returned after a 21-year absence. Born in Bombay, one of the world's most populous areas, Mehta still believes it's the city of the future.
Mehta now lives in New York. His work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Harper's, Conde Nast Traveler and The Village Voice. He co-wrote a Bollywood movie called Mission Kashmir.
Her new book (with co-author Lou Dubose) is Bushwhacked: Life in George W. Bush's America. Her stories have appeared in Esquire, The Atlantic Monthly, The New York Times Magazine and The Nation. Her other books include Shrub, about presidential candidate Bush, and Molly Ivins Can't Say That, Can She?