Matthew Lickona

Matthew Lickona

As an undergraduate at Thomas Aquinas College near Ojai, California, Matthew Lickona co-founded and ran The Hype, a college lit-mag printed on the school's copier and sold at a dollar a copy to pay off speeding tickets acquired while trying to make movie times in Los Angeles. This may or may not have helped him to land a job at the Reader upon graduation in 1995, but the paper did reprint some of his collegiate Easter Island-based cartoons, and later, his Mudflap Girls series. He has been at the paper ever since, in a variety of capacities: feature writer, wine columnist, church reviewer, restaurant critic, television columnist, editor at large, and now, film critic. Plus some other stuff under various pseudonyms.

Some samples of his early writing at the Reader:

March 20, 1997, page 54 Men Will Rise to the Level Women Demand of Them

Oct. 16, 1997, page 50 Pistol Pete Was Fat in All the Right Places(cattle insemination)

Oct. 30, 1997, page 46 My Darling Droolbucket

(one of the Daddy columns)

June 18, 1998, page 26 Dah Always Wins

March 20, 2003, page 59 Domestic Spy

He is the author of a couple of books (Swimming with Scapulars, Surfing with Mel), and his essays have appeared in places like The Awl,, and Doublethink. In his spare time, he likes to write movie pitches and country songs.

Latest Articles

A vibrant visit from one of Pixar’s pencil-pushing pros

The Good Dinosaur is now roaming at a theater near you

To build interest in their latest feature, The Good Dinosaur (opening today), Pixar sent some of the artists involved in its production out into the world to talk about their work. Last month, story artist ...

Katniss’s concentric circles of concern

Interview with Hunger Games producer Nina Jacobson

Matthew Lickona: If you had to say, “If The Mockingjay Part 1 was x, then Part 2 is y,” how would you describe that difference? Nina Jacobson: I would say that Part 1 is a ...

The bars of El Cajon Boulevard: 70th to Baltimore

Out here at the edge of East

“No matter where you are on the Boulevard, no matter what part of town, you’re always on the Boulevard,” says Chino. The Boulevard, of course, is El Cajon, and Chino, whose long dark beard sways ...

Shining Spotlight

An old-fashioned notion that some things simply need reporting

Spotlight, which takes its name from a team of investigative journalists at The Boston Globe, is a touching ode to the old-fashioned notion that some things simply need reporting; never mind the effort, the expense, ...

Spielberg, Hanks, America!

In full gee-whiz mode

Yahoos and schemers are just the price we pay for living in the Land of the Free.

Director Ariel Kleiman on Partisan

How he managed to make the whole “child assassin” scenario feel ordinary

Partisan tells the story of an urban commune, led by the charismatic Gregori (Vincent Cassel), and supported by its children, who are trained to carry out assassinations in the outside world. (Kleiman, who co-wrote the ...

The Lot brings luxury cinema to La Jolla Village

“It’s 100 percent about social interaction.”

“Today, you can watch a movie in a ton of different places,” acknowledges Adolfo Fastlicht, owner of the LOT, a new premium entertainment and dining venue on La Jolla’s Fay Avenue. “Many people don’t mind ...

Beyond the maze

Run! Run again!

The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials — part two of Wes Ball’s adaptation of the hit YA trilogy — runs and runs and ultimately stumbles on its way to part three. But first, there’s lots ...

Gaga for Gerwig

Meet Mistress America’s grande dame

Greta Gerwig is the winning costar (with Lola Kirke) and cowriter (with director Noah Baumbach) of Mistress America, the story of two women at opposite ends of the NYC gauntlet. Young Tracy (Kirke) has just ...

Win a $25 Gift Card to
The Broken Yolk Cafe

Join our newsletter list

Each newsletter subscription means another chance to win!