The man behind the puppet

Being Elmo: A Puppeteer’s Journey

If you have kids, or know someone with kids, you know Elmo; the bright-red puppet who brings joy to children’s lives on Sesame Street. But without puppeteer Kevin Clash, Elmo would have been just another discarded piece of fabric. This documentary explores the roots of Clash and his passion for puppeteering that was born out of his Baltimore childhood. It’s like Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, except with Jim Henson instead of Gene Wilder and years of hard work and sacrifice on public-access TV instead of a golden ticket in a chocolate bar.www.netflix.com.

Forget The Cabin the Woods; try this vacation home instead

Tucker and Dale vs. Evil

Disappointed by The Cabin in the Woods? Rather than going on another Firefly binge to remember what Joss Whedon is capable of, watch Tucker and Dale vs. Evil instead. A pair of rednecks, Tucker (Alan Tudyk, a.k.a. Wash from Firefly) and Dale (Tyler Labine) try to enjoy their new vacation home in the woods. Through a series of unfortunate coincidences, the two friends are hunted by a group of preppy, horror-film-victim caricatures who channel their fear into a series of painful, mostly unintentional deaths. It’s available on Netflix and a great way to wash that terrible-horror-movie taste out of your mouth. www.netflix.com.

Find life’s random milestones

Versaries app

Keeping track of birthdays is what a calendar is for. Keeping track of random numbers and numerical coincidences is what Versaries is for. The 99-cent iPhone app keeps track of the years, days and even seconds of your life with a steampunk feel. Add in when you started dating your significant other, and you’ll be reminded of more than just your regular anniversary; recently Versaries pointed out I’d been dating my girlfriend for 80 million seconds. Time seems to fly faster when you’re not counting by years. www.versariesapp.com.