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June 24, 2009 | Kevin Thomas
Jorge Ameer's unwieldy "Sabor Tropical" (Tropical Flavor) is part travelogue and part melodrama, and the two parts don't add up to much more than tedium. Ameer plays an online journalist, accompanying and filming Brian (Matthew Leitch), who's fleeing a romance gone sour, hoping to find sex and fun at Panama's Las Tablas carnival. Ameer takes far too long to get Brian, who comes across as cocky and spoiled, to Las Tablas, where the carnival really is spectacular.
May 15, 1987 | HECTOR GUTIERREZ, Times Staff Writer
Betty Lou Batey, the fundamentalist Christian accused of taking her son from his homosexual father, testified Thursday that she believed her son would have been exposed to drugs, alcohol and molestation by strangers unless she took him away. During the first day of her trial on child stealing charges, Batey said that she took her son, Brian, not because of his father's homosexual life style but because his father had become a "liberal and militant."
November 22, 1987 | BOB O'SULLIVAN, O'Sullivan is a nationally known travel writer who lives in Canoga Park
Their names are Brian and Louise Sanders, but you'd never learn their names from their dialogue. They hadn't been on the bus 15 seconds before everyone on the tour got the message. Brian edged his way down the aisle smiling, bumping into people's shoulders with either his midsection or his carry-on and excusing himself. He flopped down in a double seat toward the back. "Stupid!" his wife called from the front of the bus. "You hear me?" "Hear ya? They can hear you back in the States."
If fires had agents, not to mention publicists, the seven spectacular blazes (or is it eight--with all that smoke, it's easy to lose track) that energize "Backdraft" would have their names up in lights and the film's nominal stars would end up in small print. Because nothing anyone human does in this rather conventional smoke opera can hold a candle to conflagrations so eye-popping they make "The Towering Inferno" look like leftovers from "The Little Match Girl."
November 23, 1988 | DON SHIRLEY
When Adam and Eve tasted the forbidden fruit, they had to leave the Garden of Eden. But at least their world expanded. That wouldn't happen nowadays, suggests David Michael Erickson in his "Appetite," at the Cast-at-the-Circle. If we continue catering to our basest hungers and impulses, the world will shrink. The world of the three characters in "Appetite" has already shrunk to one room in an abandoned cafe, somewhere in the Southwestern desert.
February 2, 2010 | Helene Elliott
Leave it to Brian Burke to break open a trade market that had been stuck because it's so difficult to move huge contracts and because many general managers can't decide whether to buy or sell while their clubs are still in playoff contention. Burke, the Toronto Maple Leafs' GM, on Sunday ripped apart a roster that badly needed ripping. His acquisitions of defenseman Dion Phaneuf from Calgary and goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere from the Ducks fall into the category of reclamation projects, and those are always risky.
September 12, 2001 | Matea Gold and Maggie Farley, Los Angeles Times Staff Writers
In the worst terrorist attack ever against the United States, hijackers struck at the preeminent symbols of the nation's wealth and might Tuesday, flying airliners into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and killing or injuring thousands of people. As a horrified nation watched on television, the twin towers of the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan collapsed into flaming rubble after two Boeing 767s rammed their upper stories. A third airliner, a Boeing 757, flattened one of the Pentagon's five sides.
April 1, 2003 | Janet Wilson, Times Staff Writer
Brendan Butler was a skinny honor student from Idaho who wanted some help killing two acquaintances. Instead, he ended up dead, and three members of a Lake Forest family well known in youth sports have been charged in connection with his murder. Such is the strange and sketchy tale that emerged Monday in court papers and interviews. Butler, 20, was one of four adopted children of a local family in the mountain and lake country of Coeur D'Alene, Idaho.
The Menendez family estate, once valued at up to $14 million, is virtually depleted, it was disclosed Tuesday at Lyle and Erik Menendez's murder trial. Shrunken by taxes, legal fees and other costs, Jose and Kitty Menendez's estate is worth no more than $800,000--and has debts at least that high, defense lawyer Leslie Abramson said in court. Probate records are sealed and the defense had kept financial figures secret throughout the trial.
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