Thomas J is . . .

dsb-pic-meThe Who

Thomas J. Little — Founder, Content Manager and Editor-in-Chief. Graduate of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Tom holds a B-Sc degree in Communications with a focus on magazine/feature writing and publishing. His work has featured in a variety of print publications and digital media including the Knoxville News Sentinel, the Daily Beacon, the Tennessee Journalist and Athlete Interactive. Though his writing is more often associated with arts and entertainment beats he has created content for features concerning regional lifestyle issues and general human interest pieces. He may be reached at and on LinkedIn. 

The What 

Thomas J is a tiny corner of the internet dedicated primarily to discussions of films Tom has seen in theaters, though the odd review is inspired by alternative outlets like Netflix and On Demand. After covering a limited release of the 1977 The Grateful Dead concert documentary on assignment, Tom developed a love affair with critiquing films and has for over five years delved deeply into the conversation surrounding cinema and performance art in the larger context of national and international exposure. His film blog was established July 2011 and the rest, as they say, is history. 

The Why

For about five years Tom has operated under the pseudonym Digital Shortbread, which was the same name as the blog he started up. The best way he knows how to describe the original site title is as a ‘shower idea.’ It just came to him randomly; the name stuck. But over time it became increasingly an object of distraction. He wouldn’t blame anyone for thinking the blog he ran talked about food products or films about food or films where you get food served to you. Or it could have been a blog dedicated simply to shortbread. Of course, it was none of these. The whole idea has been to jot down thoughts on movies that Tom has seen, either in theaters, online or through other means. Over time a change simply had to be made. Probably because Tom is too self-conscious. 

Favorite Genre

For Tom it’s a toss-up between spy films (James Bond; pre-Philip Seymour Hoffman Mission: Impossible; The Man Who Knew Too Much) and psychological thrillers (The Silence of the Lambs; Seven; Inception). Tom also has a hot-and-cold relationship with comedies these days. Give him his Guy Ritchies and Wes Andersons, and you can keep your Adam Sandlers and Tyler Perrys, thank you very much.

Favorite Film

Tom’s top five is almost constantly changing (whose isn’t?), but right now it looks a little something like:

  1. Office Space
  2. The Breakfast Club
  3. Swiss Army Man
  4. Casino Royale
  5. Jacob’s Ladder

Favorite Venue 

Tom always appreciates a theater that smiles upon having a beverage while watching flicks. His hometown (Knoxville, Tennessee) boasts two theaters that do so; one is an independent-film-friendly arthouse theater called Regal Downtown West and the other, located in the heart of Knoxville, along the historic Gay Street, is the Regal Riviera, which caters more to the college crowd. But the Regal Pinnacle in Farragut is pretty tough to beat when it comes to watching blockbuster action on the biggest screens imaginable. Now if only those places started incorporating the dine-in experience . . .