August 31, 2008 |
The 25 best L.A. films of the last 25 years "Los ANGELES isn't a real city," people have said, "it just plays one on camera." It was a clever line once upon a time, but all that has changed. Los Angeles is the most complicated community in America -- make no mistake, it is a community -- and over the last 25 years, it has been both celebrated and savaged on the big screen with amazing efficacy. Damaged souls and flawless weather, canyon love and beach city menace, homeboys and credit card girls, freeways and fedoras, power lines and palm trees . . . again and again, moviegoers all over the world have sat in the dark and stared up at our Los Angeles, even if it was one populated by corrupt cops or a jabbering cartoon rabbit.
September 3, 2010 |
A president governs in prose, but every now and then some poetry slips through. Speaking in West Virginia after an explosion killed 29 coal miners, President Obama talked about the victims: "Most days they would emerge from the dark mine, squinting at the light. Most days, they would emerge, sweaty, dirty, dusted with coal. Most days, they would come home. Most days, but not that day. " The words came from Adam Frankel, a young White House speechwriter. Over the last 20 months he has developed a niche in death and disaster, a specialist in language that assuages grief.
February 24, 2013 |
Tommy Vietor was the first youthful convert to pack his bags, leave home and sign on to the Barack Obama campaign, joining the Chicago operation before his boss, then running for the Senate, had even given the convention speech by which the rest of Democratic America would discover him. He rose from driver of a press van across rural Illinois to fixture of the White House situation room. Now, the 32-year-old is contemplating something new -- a future not working for Obama. Amid the high-level departures and appointments of Obama's second term, a quieter changing of the guard is taking place farther down the food chain.
March 13, 2012 |
WhenWalt Disney Co.executives gave the greenlight to the project that became the Martian adventure film"John Carter,"they hoped they were launching the studio's next big franchise. It was to be directed by Andrew Stanton, who had been associated with a string of successful Pixar Animation Studios films - starting with the 1995 hit "Toy Story. " The source material was a century-old sci-fi touchstone that had inspired filmmakers including George Lucas and James Cameron. The movie would fit perfectly into Disney Chairman and Chief ExecutiveRobert A. Iger's big-picture plan to produce movies that would spawn sequels, become theme park attractions and drive sales of "John Carter" merchandise.
May 12, 2011
Anyone who savors Dax Shepard's warmly engaging turn as family screw-up Crosby Braverman on TV's fine "Parenthood" is bound to be far less enchanted by the Shepard who wrote, co-directed and stars in the patchy mockumentary "Brother's Justice. " Sure, this frequently improvised spoof isn't intended to be taken seriously, but it's also not funny or incisive enough to counter the unappealing persona the actor-comedian has concocted here: an impulsive, clueless narcissist on a journey to reinvent himself as an action star.
June 19, 2011 |
As emcee of the 10th annual Chrysalis Butterfly Ball on June 11, Tom Arnold reminded the event's guests of the importance of the organization that helps the homeless achieve self-sufficiency. Having had his own problems with drugs and alcohol, Arnold said, "I could very easily be on the other side of this fence instead of having the honor of hosting this. " The ball, held at the Mandeville Canyon estate of Hayward Kaiser and Susan Harris, raised more than $1 million for Chrysalis, thanks to an outpouring of support from an 800-strong, star-studded crowd that included Jon Favreau, LL Cool J, Vince Vaughn, Jennifer Garner, Amanda Anka and Jason Bateman, Rosetta and Balthazar Getty, Odette and Dave Annable, Brad Goreski, Molly Sims, Jamie-Lynn Sigler, Abigail Spencer, Soleil Moon Frye, comedian Whitney Cummings, Ashley Greene of "Twilight," Matt Lanter of "90210," Ryan Phillippe of "The Lincoln Lawyer," Chris Kattan of "Saturday Night Live" and Eric Dane of "Grey's Anatomy.