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September 1, 2009 | Robert Hilburn
Mixing the psychedelic sensibilities of the Beatles' "Magical Mystery Tour" period with a tuneful Byrds-like jangle, the first, self-titled album from the English quartet the Stone Roses was a spectacular work whose best moments laid a blueprint for scores of other British bands, namely Oasis. It remains one of the great rock and roll debuts and was a massive success in England, but "The Stone Roses" failed to receive much attention in this country when it was released in 1989.
August 29, 2009 | P.J. Huffstutter
The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission said today it has fired the two agents, as well as their supervisor, who took part in this summer's raid of a Fort Worth gay bar that resulted in law enforcement clashing with hundreds of patrons and leaving one man hospitalized with a serious head injury. Christopher Aller, who had been with the agency for five years, and Jason Chapman, who joined the Texas ABC less than five months ago, were terminated as of today over the raid at the Rainbow Lounge.
August 21, 2009 | Susan King
As a youngster in the 1970s, Mike Henry, the executive producer and co-creator of "The Cleveland Show," Fox's upcoming animated spinoff of its hit "Family Guy," would have a "Yabba-dabba-doo" time sitting on shag carpet in the living room of his childhood home watching Hanna-Barbera cartoons such as "The Flintstones," "Scooby-Doo" and "The Jetsons." "It's all I watched as far as animated stuff goes," says Henry, who also supplies the voice of Cleveland, among other characters on the show.
August 20, 2009 | Susan King
"The Blair Witch Project," the low-budget, box-office sensation of 1999, celebrates its 10th anniversary tonight at the American Cinematheque's Egyptian Theatre. Heather Donahue, Joshua Leonard and Michael C. Williams star in the pseudo-documentary-style chiller about three college students who venture into the woods outside Burkittsville, Md., to chronicle the forest's Blair Witch legend. After the screening, there will be a discussion with directors Eduardo Sánchez and Daniel Myrick, producers Gregg Hale, Mike Monello and Robin Cowie, star Donahue and other cast members.
August 19, 2009 | SUSAN KING
The glossy, über-melodramatic films of director Douglas Sirk and producer Ross Hunter, which were so popular in the 1950s, are deceptively simple. The glitz, glamour, Dior necklaces and Russell Metty's florid cinematography are a kind of ruse that allowed Sirk to explore such serious issues as sexual mores, class structure and racism. Todd Haynes was significantly influenced by Sirk, especially his 1955 "All That Heaven Allows," in his acclaimed 2002 drama, "Far From Heaven." Directors including the late Rainer Werner Fassbinder and "Inglourious Basterds' " Quentin Tarantino have also tipped their hat to Sirk.
August 17, 2009 | Martha Groves
Yankel Rosenbaum. James Byrd. Matthew Shepard. Joseph Ileto. David Ritcheson. The names seem random and disconnected, but one sad trait binds them: Each was the victim of a hate crime. All but one died as a result. The exception, 17-year-old Ritcheson, committed suicide a year after being beaten and sodomized with a patio umbrella pole. The names of the victims were used as a somber introduction by Ariella Loewenstein, an associate director of the Anti-Defamation League, to a recent panel discussion at the National Council of Jewish Women about hate.
August 12, 2009 | Diane Haithman
In what government and arts officials are calling the most ambitious commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall outside of Germany, a symbolic re-creation of the wall that once separated East and West Berlin will be erected across Wilshire Boulevard in November. The Wall Project, painted by professional and amateur artists, will close Sunday afternoon traffic on one of the city's busiest thoroughfares for three hours on Nov. 8 beginning at 3 p.m. The project involves the Culver City's Wende Museum and Archive of the Cold War, the city of Los Angeles, the German Consulate General in Los Angeles and other partners, and will be officially announced Thursday.
August 11, 2009 | Ann M. Simmons
Not a day goes by that Mindy Finkelstein doesn't pause to remember the terrifying morning 10 years ago when a self-professed white supremacist went on a calculated rampage against Jews and ethnic minorities, killing a man and wounding others. "Every day, it crosses my mind," said Finkelstein, 26, who was shot in the right calf and thigh while working as a day-camp counselor at the North Valley Jewish Community Center in Granada Hills. But speaking on Monday, 10 years after the incident, Finkelstein said she wanted this anniversary to be different.
August 11, 2009 | Susan King
The beloved puppet show "Kukla, Fran and Ollie," the creation of puppeteer Burr Tillstrom, had millions of ardent fans, among them Orson Welles, John Steinbeck and James Thurber. The show was also a major influence on future generations of puppeteers, such as Jim Henson. In fact, the Muppets' creator publicly said, "We owe everything to Burr Tillstrom and 'Kukla, Fran and Ollie.' " The classic series is celebrating its 60th anniversary with the release today on DVD of 39 episodes of the show that aired on PBS and in syndication from 1969-71 and the unveiling of a new stamp commemorating the series, which was among the first to appeal to both children and adults.
August 10, 2009 | Ari B. Bloomekatz
The story you are about to read is true. The names have not been changed to protect the innocent. The television series "Dragnet," which first aired more than 50 years ago, ensured the Los Angeles Police Department's place in Hollywood lore. Now the department is helping return the favor by hosting an event Tuesday at the Police Academy in Elysian Park to commemorate the release of a "Dragnet" postage stamp, authorities said. A program will include the widow of actor Jack Webb, who played LAPD Sgt. Joe Friday; actor Harry Morgan, who played Friday's partner; and LAPD Chief William J. Bratton.
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