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February 19, 2014 | By Steve Zeitchik
Of the many unexpected moments in Phil Lord and Chris Miller's breakout hit "The Lego Movie," perhaps none is as surprising as the film's ending, which is daring even by the standards of this unconventional film. So daring, in fact, that even its filmmakers weren't sure they could get away with it. "We were terrified," said Miller. "We didn't know if you would care about the universe once you understood how the universe worked," alluding to how the movie turns itself inside-out at the end. PHOTOS: Images from 'The Lego Movie' In a season in which the typically tricky art of the movie ending has largely satisfied - witness the well-regarded twist in "American Hustle," the Quaalude-enabled piece de resistance of "The Wolf of Wall Street" and the return-to-Earth redemption of "Gravity" - the finale of "Lego" may top them all. Warner Bros., which financed and released "The Lego Movie," was also unsure about the finale and for a time pushed the filmmakers to consider a more conventional path.
July 14, 2012 | By Neal Gabler
A lot of folks have wondered whether it is too soon, just 10 years after the release of the original film and five years after the third installment, to relaunch Spider-Man. When questioned, a producer of the new picture snapped that anyone who asked that is "too old. " He may have been dismissively arrogant, especially to geriatrics over 30, but he may also have been right. Obviously, remakes are nothing new, even if the time between the original and the next version has shrunk dramatically.
February 11, 2007 | David Wolman, David Wolman is the author of "A Left-Hand Turn Around the World" and has written for Wired, Newsweek Discover and other magazines.
Gretchen Daily, an ecologist at Stanford University, wears butterfly-patterned socks. She's a careful recycler and bikes to work. She composts. So what's she doing hanging out with guys from Goldman Sachs? As a tried-and-true "green," she believes she doesn't have a choice. "Time is running short," she says. "Appealing to moral sense isn't enough anymore. We have to make conservation fit mainstream business calculations."
December 13, 1990 | Times Wire Services
Leading French fashion house Pierre Balmain, lamenting a shortage of Arab princesses and wives of Texas millionaires, will stop producing haute couture garments. The Paris fashion house said today that the Persian Gulf crisis and the economic downturn made it impossible for it to keep the costly, individually tailored line going. "Haute couture is dying.
March 21, 1998
A pop quiz: 1--"Murphy Brown" is shot on (a) videotape (b) film; 2--L.A. Times staff photographers shoot on (a) film (b) videotape; 3--The L.A. Times is (a) a newsletter (b) a newspaper. "Murphy Brown" is, as are the majority of four-camera shows, shot on film, not tape ("Signing Off, Quietly," by Judith Michaelson, March 16). There is a world of difference--in style, in look, in production, in cost. This across-the-board generic use of the word "taping" has come to distort both the intrinsic and the artistic nature of the medium.
August 5, 1990
Regarding the proposal to have Santa Monica City Council members elected by district rather than at large (Times, July 26): One's ethnic background should not be a compelling consideration in choosing a member of the City Council or any elective office. As a former high school civics teacher, I find the idea inimical to intrinsic principles that must govern all our elections. Candidates must be chosen based on their qualifications, irrespective of race, creed or color. I don't think there are any exclusive ethnic issues to be dealt with by the council, only citizen issues.
August 25, 1996 | Carlos Monsivais, Carlos Monsivais is a Mexican journalist, historian and social critic. His most recent book is "Los Rituales del Caos" (The Rituals of Chaos)
One of the more alarming findings of a recent Rand study on how immigrants fare in the U.S. education system was the low academic aspirations of Mexican immigrant children, compared with other immigrant groups. Even more disturbing, the study found that their academic aspirations weakened in subsequent generations. Among the many explanations--poverty, classroom size, the language barrier, etc.
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