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July 9, 2005
Re "The Spoils of 'War': Studio Fireworks," by R. Kinsey Lowe, July 5: Steven Spielberg alone doing "War of the Worlds" would have been enough to make the movie a hit. Recall that actors less renowned than Tom Cruise starred in such Spielberg blockbusters as "Jaws," "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "E.T." and "Jurassic Park." Therefore, contrary to what this article says, I believe Cruise's bankability is still in question, thanks in part to his recent "bizarre public appearances," as the story termed them, but perhaps more because of a drop in fan appeal that some stars experience after being on top for so many years.
April 20, 2014 | By Jeff Dietrich
I go to Mass almost every Sunday, but I try to avoid the big holidays. Especially Easter. In most Christian churches, Easter is a kind of triumphalistic affirmation of Christian certainty. My sense is that the Resurrection is not a celebration; it is a threat and a challenge. Even though I am a Catholic Worker and I live and work with the homeless and serve a meal at our soup kitchen every day, I don't want to encounter the risen Christ, for how can any of us begin to measure up to his example?
March 8, 2013 | By Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
It is a rare thing to witness the creative process. But in the excellent new documentary "Gregory Crewdson: Brief Encounters," filmmaker Ben Shapiro gives us fly-on-the-wall access over a 10-year period to an acclaimed artist as he envisions, designs and executes his surreal commentary on small-town American life in the form of an epic photo installation, "Beneath the Roses. " Bit by bit Shapiro uses Crewdson's musings to piece together the way he moves from a jumble of thoughts to the moment he shoots.
April 17, 2014 | By Shan Li
Problems at some of the state's fuel refineries have sent gasoline prices soaring in California just in time for the kickoff of the busy driving season. A gallon of regular gasoline hit a statewide average of $4.196 on Thursday, up about 13 cents in a week, according to AAA. That's the highest price since March 2013. If gas prices keep surging, David Buzzo plans to cut down on dinners out and impulse purchases. Buzzo, a supervisor of field services for Southern California Edison, said he's always conscious of every uptick in price when filling up. "That takes away other money, luxury money," the 59-year-old Hollywood resident said.
July 3, 2008 | Carina Chocano
When Werner Herzog accepted an invitation from the National Science Foundation to make a film in Antarctica, he made it clear that it would not be a film about penguins. His questions about nature tended toward the bizarre -- he wondered why men felt the urge to disguise their identities with masks and feathers, for example. "Encounters" doesn't answer these questions but instead presents a series of portraits of people who end up on the continent that has become a symbol of our eventual demise.
May 28, 1987 | From Reuters
The Rev. Jerry Falwell, in a new "Holy War" salvo, today cited what he called evidence of homosexual encounters by fallen TV evangelist Jim Bakker. Falwell said he and other church leaders had been given taped testimony of at least three such encounters. "It is very tragic; it's heartbreaking," Falwell said on ABC's "Good Morning America" of the evidence of homosexuality. "It is not hearsay. It is awful."
January 6, 2013 | By Jervey Tervalon
I grew up in South Los Angeles at a time and in a neighborhood where, even for a child, having a gun pointed at you happened. For me, the first time was when I was 12 years old. I'd gone around the corner to visit a friend and a pretty new girl who had recently moved in next door to him. We were roughhousing, and somehow the girl fell and hit her head. She stood and accused me of deliberating hurting her; then she left. Before I could decide what to do, she had returned with a gun, which she pointed at me. "You hurt me," she said, tears running down her cheeks.
November 28, 1985 | From Reuters
Rational people should treat sex just like any other commodity, according to an economist at the National University of Singapore. Euston Quah wrote in the latest issue of the monthly Singapore Business that people should "choose that quantity of sexual experience that will maximize his or her net gains." "There are costs to having sex," he said, "and these costs increase as sexual experiences increase.
July 21, 2001
In response to Christopher Griffin (Saturday Letters, July 14): Composer John Williams, the man behind the music of Steven Spielberg's "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "E.T." and most recently "A.I.," credits the director with the idea to incorporate "When You Wish Upon a Star" in the five-note motif that appears throughout "Close Encounters" ("re mi do do so"). Williams wrote roughly 350 five-note patterns using the notes from "When You Wish Upon a Star" before he and Spielberg agreed on the now-famous motif.
February 17, 1991
For a full-scale biography of actress Elizabeth Taylor, I would appreciate hearing from anybody who has had personal encounters or experiences, or who possesses correspondence, photographs and/or interesting anecdotes. C. DAVID HEYMANN, 360 Central Park West, Apt. 14A, New York, NY 10025
April 7, 2014 | By Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON - Louisiana Rep. Vance McAllister has apologized after a video surfaced of the Republican lawmaker in a romantic encounter with a member of his staff. On Monday, the Ouachita Citizen posted a brief video sent by an anonymous source that shows McAllister, who is married, leaving his congressional office in Monroe, La., after passionately kissing a woman the paper identified as his district scheduler, Melissa Anne Hixon Peacock. According to the newspaper, the incident occurred on Dec. 23, barely a month after McAllister had been sworn into office.
April 7, 2014 | Sandy Banks
I've been feeling out of sorts lately - cranky, anxious, insecure - and not sure what to blame. My youngest daughter thinks Mercury might still be in retrograde. Her sister blames the recent swarm of earthquakes for my angst. And my eldest daughter suggests it's my advancing age; older people have more trouble adapting to daylight savings time, she says. They want me to figure it out soon so I can stop moping around. That's why last week's invitation for spiritual healing at a wolf preserve sounded like something I needed.
April 4, 2014 | By David. L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times Book Critic
Barbara Ehrenreich never meant to write a memoir. "It seems very self-involved," she says by phone from her home in Arlington, Va. "I have anxiety about it. " That anxiety is heightened at the moment because her new book, "Living With a Wild God: A Nonbeliever's Search for the Truth About Everything" (Twelve: 240 pp., $26), is as personal a piece of writing as she has ever done, built around a journal from her teenage years that traces both a spiritual quest and a youthful mystical experience, each having to do with "an impression of intention" - the sense that there is some underlying shape or meaning to the universe.
March 19, 2014 | By Dylan Hernandez
SYDNEY, Australia - Hyun-Jin Ryu has traveled not only to the other side of the world, but also back in time. On the Australian All-Star team the Dodgers will face Thursday night is 44-year-old Dae-Sung Koo, a fellow left-hander from whom Ryu learned his best pitch, the changeup. Here to pitch the second game of the Dodgers' two-game, season-opening series against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Ryu saw Koo at the Sydney Cricket Ground earlier this week. When Ryu did, he made it a point to call Koo "sunbae," a Korean term used to show deference to a senior.
March 8, 2014 | By Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
We live in an age of artistic appropriation. Recording artists freely "sample" music created by other people, visual artists stretch the concept of "fair use" to create art from photographs they did not take, and a young novelist in Germany was unconcerned when pages of someone else's writing were found in her own novel. "There is no such thing as originality," she said, "just authenticity. " By those standards, what the British theater group Kneehigh has done to David Lean's classic romantic melodrama "Brief Encounter" is mild indeed.
February 17, 2014 | By Ben Poston
A year ago, I wrote about arriving in L.A. from the Midwest and biking to work despite initial concerns about decrepit streets, aggressive drivers and a general unease that the City of Angels just wasn't all that bike friendly. After a month in the city, I decided to give the bike a go and found it satisfying. I celebrated the quiet joys of commuting on a bike - the sights, the smells, the ability to explore the sprawling city on my own terms. The five-mile trip from Los Feliz to downtown was invigorating and a conversation starter at the office.
June 26, 1988
I can't say it was a pleasure to have my own memories of encounters with Madame Mitchell revived by William Wilson's article on Joan Mitchell, but he was right on ("Abstracting an Abstract Expressionist," June 19). Fortunately, her capacity for leaving interviewers totally unstrung is exceeded by her ability to turn out those glorious paintings year after year. MERLE SCHIPPER Los Angeles
February 15, 2014 | By Dan Weikel
Northbound traffic continued to move steadily at midday Saturday on the 405 Freeway over the Sepulveda Pass, but motorists were encountering longer delays Saturday as they merged from five lanes to two lanes through the highway's closure area that has been dubbed Jamzilla. While things have gone well so far, transportation officials are still warning travelers to avoid the northbound 405 between Sunset and Ventura boulevards, where extensive paving and striping is being done for a new carpool lane.
January 31, 2014 | Sandy Banks
The beating death of Kim Pham has begun to morph into urban legend a la Kitty Genovese, the New York City woman stabbed to death 50 years ago while dozens of bystanders supposedly watched but did nothing to help her. In the Genovese case, it took decades to debunk that claim, which became the basis of a psychological concept called the "bystander effect" that explains why crowds fail to come to a victim's aid. In the Pham case, it took...
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