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PHOENIX — A prosecutor argued Tuesday there's nothing wrong with charging a motorist who smoked marijuana up to a month ago with driving while drugged.
LOS ANGELES — We all know he can leap tall buildings in a single bound and bend steel in his bare hands. So perhaps it should come as no surprise that during a time of crisis even the porn industry turns to Superman.
When Eugene “Gene” Butler felt sick several months ago, he thought it was the flu. He was tired, ran a fever, and had a cough.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The Sacramento Food Bank once was one of those standard food distribution centers where bags of processed foods, carbohydrate-laden government commodities and day-old breads and sweets were bagged and handed to people who stood in line for hours to get it.
It's a given at multiplexes these days that despite switch-off-your-cell-phone announcements and the occasional grumbling protest, whatever's onscreen will have to compete with tiny pockets of light from audience members unable to stay off their handhelds. Watching those glow patches come and go during "Disconnect" reinforces the film's position on how desensitized we've become to these technological intrusions. Not that Henry-Alex Rubin's schematic multi-strand drama is at all shy about articulating its themes.
"Blood-drenched" barely begins to describe Fede Alvarez's remake of "Evil Dead," a gore-for-broke affair that strips the flesh off Sam Raimi's cult-beloved comic-horror franchise and exposes the demons at its core. The presence of Raimi, original collaborator Rob Tapert, and star Bruce Campbell as producers should give the faithful permission to attend what would otherwise smell like a shameless exploitation of the 1981 film, but the high production values and nonstop action offered here should also please younger genre fans who've never bothered to rent it.
If a big, dumb action movie knows it's a big, dumb action movie and revels in that fact, is that preferable to a big, dumb action movie making the mistake of thinking it's significant, relevant art?
That's the question to ponder — if you can think straight and your ears aren't ringing too badly — during "G.I. Joe: Retaliation." This sequel of sorts to the 2009 blockbuster "G.I. Joe: The Rise of the Cobra" seems to have some cheeky fun with itself, from Bruce Willis cheerily revealing the arsenal he's hiding in his quiet suburban home to RZA from the Wu-Tang Clan essentially showing up and playing himself. A major city is obliterated with the touch of a button and several others are in peril as the world hinges on nuclear destruction in what amounts to a hammy game of chicken.
Nothing matters really. This is a movie based on a Hasbro toy, after all — it's all spectacle and bombast. But at least "G.I. Joe" is aware of its vapidity compared to, say, last week's "Olympus Has Fallen," in which North Korean terrorists took over the White House in self-serious fashion but our secret-service-agent hero found time to make wedged-in, smart-alecky quips on the way to saving the day.
That's not to say that this "G.I. Joe" is good, aside from a couple of dazzling action set pieces, but at least it's efficient in its muscular mindlessness.
The elite military team of Joes, now led by Duke (Channing Tatum, returning from the first film), is sent to Pakistan to recover some nuclear weapons. But they find themselves double-crossed by their own government, led by an imposter president, and lose many among their ranks in a massive ambush. The survivors — Roadblock (Dwayne Johnson, reliable as ever), Flint (D.J. Cotrona, who's given no personality) and Lady Jaye (Adrianne Palicki, in full makeup for covert ops) — must find out who's running the country and get to the bottom of this villain's dastardly plan.
Turns out it's master of disguise Zartan, part of the enemy group Cobra, who's posing as the president while the real commander in chief is locked up in a bomb shelter. (Jonathan Pryce plays both roles; he's far too qualified for even one of them.) The three Joes realize they need help to bring him down, so they round up the far-flung Snake Eyes (Ray Park), the petite warrior Jinx (Elodie Yung, whose character trains with the Blind Master, RZA) and the reluctant Storm Shadow (Korean superstar Byung-hun Lee, an athletic and elegant specimen).
They also need some firepower, so they track down Willis' Original Joe, Gen. Colton, who provides his own personal gun show. (You'd never know there's a gun control debate in this country from watching this movie; it's all very macho and rah-rah. The flip side is, none of the casualties from all this sophisticated weaponry results in any blood. This is an astonishingly violent PG-13 movie.)
"Retaliation" initially was scheduled to come out last summer, but the studio pulled it and delayed its release to convert the movie to 3-D. With a director like Jon M. Chu, who's shown a flair for integrating 3-D with the dance extravaganza "Step Up 3D" and the concert film "Justin Bieber: Never Say Never," why not just shoot it that way in the first place? As it stands now, the extra dimension doesn't add much, and often is used in that simplistic, tried-and-true way of flinging things at us from the screen: bullets, throwing stars, etc.
There is one absolutely astounding extended sequence about halfway through, in which two teams of ninjas face off in a battle on the sheer cliff faces of the Himalayas. Using cables and zip lines, it's as if they're running, leaping and practically dancing on walls in the sky — a breathtaking piece of choreography in its own right, regardless of the dimension through which it's viewed.
"G.I. Joe Retaliation," a Paramount Pictures release, is rated PG-13 for intense sequences of combat violence and martial arts action throughout, and for brief sensuality. Running time: 110 minutes. Two stars out of four.
Motion Picture Association of America rating definition for PG-13: Parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.
WASHINGTON — Your bosses want you to eat your broccoli, hit the treadmill and pledge you’ll never puff on a cigarette. But a new study raises doubts that workplace wellness programs save the company money.
A big-budget, effects-laden, 3-D retelling of the Jack and the Beanstalk legend may seem like the unlikeliest pairing yet of director Bryan Singer and writer Christopher McQuarrie, but "Jack the Giant Slayer" ends up being smart, thrilling and a whole lot of fun.
Steven Spielberg's longtime cinematographer, Janusz Kaminski, already has won two Academy Awards for their collaborations on "Schindler's List" and "Saving Private Ryan," which are considered the director's masterpieces. Kaminski is nominated again this year for his work on Spielberg's "Lincoln," which features a signature look that they've captured together: a mystical sort of lighting, often streaking in from the outside and casting dramatic shafts.
Having a child reach toddler age involves many exciting new questions and avenues for parents: What should my child eat? What books should I read to my child? What activities should I start involving him or her in? How should I socially interact my child?
The party is at your house this year.
Words spoken more than 4,000 years ago — it was written, and prophesied, that Jesus would be born of a virgin. Isaiah 9:6 — “For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government shall be upon His shoulders; and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”
Judging part one of Peter Jackson’s “The Lord of the Rings” prelude “The Hobbit” is a bit like reviewing a film after seeing only the first act.
Judging part one of Peter Jackson's "The Lord of the Rings" prelude "The Hobbit" is a bit like reviewing a film after seeing only the first act.
After performing about 80 three-and-a-half-hour shows, including a three-month European leg on Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band’s Wrecking Ball Tour during the past year, Nils Lofgren is getting ready to crash at home and have a break from what he describes as the “greatest musical job in the world.”
This is it people, the long awaited day that Stephanie Meyer’s asinine chronicle of lame vampires, talking CGI werewolves, and the single worst female protagonist in all of fiction comes to a close. While the fandom may live on for decades, at least we’ll never have to suffer through one of these movies again. Of course Meyer’s could always write another novel and cash in. But maybe I’m speaking too soon. Perhaps “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 2” will be the rare sequel that finally delivers on all the hype, at the very least working as a light guilty pleasure along the lines of “True Blood.”
This is it people, the long awaited day that Stephanie Meyer’s asinine chronicle of lame vampires, talking CGI werewolves, and the single worst female protagonist in all of fiction comes to a close. While the fandom may live on for decades, at least we’ll never have to suffer through one of these movies again.
Tom Kenny is a man of a thousand voices -- or so it seems.
Are you constantly struggling to reach or maintain healthy weight? Do you experience cravings for specific foods? What about unexplained joint pain, skin problems or headaches? If so, the cause is highly probably related to the food(s) you’re eating.
For puppies and kittens, size really does matter.
A true-crime author stumbles onto something beyond his beat in Scott Derrickson’s “Sinister,” which follows Ethan Hawke’s Ellison Oswalt as he grows increasingly obsessed with a missing-girl case he hopes will lead to a bestselling book. Occasionally stupid (stretching even fright-flick conventions) but scary nonetheless, the pic should please horror fans.
A true-crime author stumbles onto something beyond his beat in Scott Derrickson's "Sinister," which follows Ethan Hawke's Ellison Oswalt as he grows increasingly obsessed with a missing-girl case he hopes will lead to a bestselling book. Occasionally stupid (stretching even fright-flick conventions) but scary nonetheless, the pic should please horror fans.
LOS ANGELES - For puppies and kittens, size really does matter.
Viewers hoping for a juicy expose of the super-secretive Church of Scientology in "The Master" might want to adjust their expectations just a tad.