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BUSINESS
May 24, 2012 | By W.J. Hennigan
SpaceX's cone-shaped space capsule performed a series of delicate maneuvers around the International Space Station that proved to NASA officials that it's ready to move in for a historic docking attempt. "We're looking good across the board," said John Couluris, SpaceX lead mission director, in a Thursday news briefing. SpaceX, officially known as Space Exploration Technologies Corp., is aiming to become the world's first private firm to dock a craft with the space station.
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BUSINESS
May 23, 2012 | By W.J. Hennigan, Los Angeles Times
In a pivotal moment for private spaceflight, a towering white rocket lifted into space a cone-shaped capsule headed for a three-day trip carrying cargo to the International Space Station and a tricky rendezvous in outer space this week. The launch Tuesday marked the first time a private company has sent a spacecraft to the space station. On a column of fire, a Falcon 9 rocket - built by Space Exploration Technologies Corp., or SpaceX - carried the unmanned Dragon capsule into space after a 3:44 a.m. EDT launch from Cape Canaveral, Fla. But the launch is just the beginning of the mission, and some of the most challenging tasks lie ahead.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 5, 2012 | By Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
Filmmakers are natural raconteurs — they have to be — at least when talking about their films. There are the money men who must be convinced to invest, the studios they need to sign on for distribution, the actors they want to hire and the press and public they hope will see the finished film and like it. The American Film Institute captures all that and more in "Conversations at the American Film Institute with the Great Moviemakers: The...
ENTERTAINMENT
April 27, 2012
In the film "Elles"from director Malgoska Szumowska, Juliette Binoche plays a Paris magazine journalist who interviews two young women (Anaïs Demoustier, Joanna Kulig) putting themselves through school working as prostitutes. The girls envy her bourgeois stability while she comes to want their self-possessed freedom, though the lives of all three are shown to be not quite so clear-cut. Binoche proves why she is such a world-renowned actress with the way she conveys ideas flickering across her brow and flashing behind her eyes.
BUSINESS
April 25, 2012 | By W.J. Hennigan
The first launch of a private spaceship to the International Space Station has been delayed more than a week, until May 7, so engineers can test hardware and software, as well as review data. Space Exploration Technologies Corp., better known as SpaceX, was slated to launch a craft from Cape Canaveral, Fla., on April 30 in a demonstration flight for NASA. The launch date had already been pushed back several times. "After reviewing our recent progress, it was clear that we needed more time to finish hardware in-the-loop testing and properly review and follow up on all data," SpaceX spokeswoman Kirstin Brost Grantham said in a statement.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 20, 2012
This can't be correct: Cloris Leachman and Tara Reid topline a period horror-thriller about a young boy who becomes convinced the Manson family has moved into the cornfield in back of his house? And it's not some mad parody but, rather, an earnest effort, which makes it even more weird. The absolute best part of "The Fields" is simply that, letting the very idea of this cast and this story marinate in the brainpan for a moment before coming to the obvious common-sense conclusion: This cannot possibly work out. And indeed the film, directed by Tom Mattera and David Mazzoni from a screenplay by B. Harrison Smith, is flat and lifeless, not even the odd object promised by its unlikely cast, who play it straight and with little energy.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 12, 2012
First-time feature director Kat Coiro gives an oft-tread story a snappy new spin in the hip and enjoyable comedy "Life Happens. " After underdog Kim (an endearing Krysten Ritter) loses out for the last nearby condom to brasher roommate Deena (Kate Bosworth, also fine) during the BFF's simultaneous one-night stands, Kim ends up a devoted but ill-prepared mother of a baby boy. With the child's me-first, surf star dad (Rhys Coiro, Kat's husband) decidedly absent, Kim must navigate the demands of single motherhood, her thankless job assisting a hellish canine patron (Kristen Johnston)
ENTERTAINMENT
March 30, 2012
Shark movies have been suffering under comparisons to "Jaws" for more than 35 years, and with good reason: Steven Spielberg's 1975 waterborne frightfest remains a classic. "Dark Tide," directed with hopelessly flagging energy by John Stockwell, barely musters up enough interest to be thuddingly bad. Halle Berry stars as a shark-loving, Cape Town-based marine biologist who's backslid into a life of guided tours since losing close friends to great-white attacks on one of her uncaged, communing-with-sharks excursions a year prior.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 2, 2012
Although "Falling Away" would have benefited from stronger main character focus and a less episodic scene structure, writer-director Michael David Trozzo's feature debut proves a sincere, authentic, generally stirring effort. The film tracks the effect of a fatal school bus accident on three South L.A. teens: Elijah (Jason Finn), a hard-working kid aiming to leave the 'hood; his best friend, Julius (D'Angelo Wilson), a budding basketball star sidelined by a crash-related injury; and Emily (Jennifer Freeman)
BUSINESS
March 1, 2012 | By W.J. Hennigan
At a launch pad in Cape Canaveral atop a towering 18-story rocket sits a spaceship that NASA officials hope will be the first privately built craft to dock with the International Space Station. The gumdrop-shaped space capsule was slated to begin its historic mission earlier this year. But Hawthorne rocket venture Space Exploration Technologies Corp., the company that manufactures the spacecraft, said more engineering work was needed before blast off. The company, better known as SpaceX, posted a photo Wednesday on its Twitter account of the Dragon capsule and its Falcon 9 rocket sitting vertical at its launch complex.
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