Ellar Coltrane, who plays Mason in Boyhood, was 6 years old when director Richard Linklater picked him for the role. Made over the course of 12 years, the film is David Edelstein's favorite of the year. Courtesy of Matt Lankes hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Matt Lankes

Pepperpot, a traditional Guyanese Christmas dish, is basically a stew of aromatics and tough meat parts like shanks, trotters and tails that benefit from a long cooking. Courtesy of Cynthia Nelson Photography hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Cynthia Nelson Photography

Curator Timothy Verdon says "Mary is unexpectedly fashionable" in Fra Filippo Lippi's Madonna and Child, painted in the 1460s. Provincia di Firenze, Palazzo Medici Riccardi, Florence/National Museum of Women in the Arts hide caption

itoggle caption Provincia di Firenze, Palazzo Medici Riccardi, Florence/National Museum of Women in the Arts

The Pacific Northwest Ballet's Nutcracker features choreography by Kent Stowell and sets and costumes by the late children's book author Maurice Sendak. Angela Sterling/Pacific Northwest Ballet hide caption

itoggle caption Angela Sterling/Pacific Northwest Ballet

The Serial podcast is Sarah Koenig's reinvestigation of the murder of Hae Min Lee, a Maryland high school student who was strangled in 1999. Lee was found in Baltimore's Leakin Park. Her schoolmate and ex-boyfriend Adnan Syed was convicted of the murder and is serving a life sentence. Courtesy of Serial hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Serial

Australian Christmas today is characterized by gastronomic eclecticism. Many of us have abandoned the old British customs — except for the rich and alcoholic Christmas pudding. Edward Shaw/iStockphoto hide caption

itoggle caption Edward Shaw/iStockphoto

It's clear from this child's reckless nighttime e-reading that someone has not kept up with their subscription to the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Mari/iStock hide caption

itoggle caption Mari/iStock

Protesters in Boston during a December demonstration against the deaths of two unarmed black men at the hands of white police officers in New York City and Ferguson, Mo. Charles Krupa/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Charles Krupa/AP