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ENTERTAINMENT
March 13, 2014 | By Robert Abele
Out to prove that the comic-book movie needn't be mega-financed behemoths, the scrappy superhero-noir indie "Sparks" busks its 1940s saga of dark redemption with considerable visual energy, if not always coherence or competence. Starting with wounded, wanted vigilante Ian Sparks (Chase Williamson) barging into a newspaper to report his own murder, the movie flashbacks - and flashbacks - to unravel a convoluted story stemming from a superpower-bestowing meteorite crash, Sparks' teaming with masked crime fighter Heavenly Lady (Ashley Bell)
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NEWS
April 9, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
The MTV Movie Awards is known for its combustible moments and categories honoring such cinematic achievements as “best kiss” and “best gut-wrenching performance.” But when the annual raucousness gets under way Sunday from the Nokia Theatre with Conan O'Brien as host, it will also include a more solemn moment: a tribute to Paul Walker.   The late “Fast & Furious” actor, who died Thanksgiving weekend in a single-car crash, was a fixture at past awards, and the network has decided to honor his memory at this year's event.
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 21, 2013 | By Mark Olsen
It's a story so incredible, if it weren't true you wouldn't believe it. An unmarried young woman in Ireland gave birth to a boy in 1952. Sent to have the baby in a convent home, she remained there until her son Anthony was given away against her will at 3 years old, adopted by an American family. She would spend some 50 years with no idea what became of him, while keeping her secret from the family she would start in England. The new film "Philomena," opening Friday in Los Angeles, is based on Martin Sixsmith's 2009 book, "The Lost Child of Philomena Lee. " Starring Steve Coogan as Sixsmith and Judi Dench as Lee, it was written by Coogan and Jeff Pope and directed by Stephen Frears.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 4, 2014 | By Randy Lewis
Chorale master Paul Salamunovich once said that the greatest moment of his life was a 1988 concert at the Vatican for Pope John Paul II with the group he had led continuously since 1949, the St. Charles Borromeo Church Choir of North Hollywood. But it was his experience with choral music as a Southern California teenager that provided the underpinning for nearly everything he did over the next six-plus decades, including his role in shaping the Los Angeles Master Chorale into one of the world's finest choirs.
SPORTS
April 4, 2010 | Jerry Crowe
The man who made perhaps the most famous shot in cinematic hoops history never played high school basketball. "I tried out three years in a row," Maris Valainis says, "and I got cut three years in a row." But as Jimmy Chitwood in the venerated 1986 film "Hoosiers," Valainis calmly sinks the game-winning jumper to give the Hickory High Huskers the 1952 Indiana state title. Movie fans haven't forgotten. Valainis says he's still recognized from his portrayal of Chitwood, whose shy, reserved personality is similar to his own. "When I'm playing, yes," says Valainis, whose picture-perfect shooting form can still be seen in Southland pickup games, "and when I'm out sometimes too. "If I'm in a social situation, I'll get a lot of, ‘You look really familiar to me.' And then finally someone will figure it out, which is amazing to me that 25 years later people would remember.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 13, 2014 | By Martin Tsai
"Tiger & Bunny the Movie: The Rising" puts such a radical spin on superhero comics that it almost reads as satire. The film boasts a Justice League of its own, but one reminiscent of a professional sports league complete with stars, duds, corporate sponsors, a farm system and even an ancillary television network that literally keeps score on these avengers. To recap for the "Tiger & Bunny" uninitiated, the film follows a short-lived anime television series and a 2012 movie ("The Beginning")
SPORTS
February 1, 2013 | Bill Plaschke
NEW ORLEANS — He's a real person. He's not some cartoon giant being dragged out of a cold fog by Sandra Bullock in a scene that made America cry. He's a real football player. He's not just some lost soul in oversized pads requiring an on-field pep talk from Bullock before blocking someone in a scene that made America cheer. When Michael Oher sat down at a ballroom table Thursday with bright eyes, firm handshake and thoughtful answers, one could immediately understand his dislike for the incessant rewinding of a scarred and distant childhood.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 10, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
At first blush, “300: Rise of an Empire” managed a nice success this weekend. It took in $45 million, enough for the top spot at the box office and a plethora of “conquering” puns that inevitably followed. The Noam Murro movie, starring Sullivan Stapleton and Eva Green, is also conforming to the Hollywood formula of built-for-international product of tallying two-thirds of its sales overseas (pretty much exactly at 66%-34%). But things may not be nearly as rosy for the swords-and-sandals sequel or the genre it represents.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 24, 2010 | By Dennis McLellan, Los Angeles Times
Grace Bradley Boyd, an actress who came to Hollywood as a Paramount contract player in the early 1930s but abandoned her career after marrying the love of her life, William "Hopalong Cassidy" Boyd, has died. She was 97. Boyd, the keeper of the "Hoppy" flame after the death of her western movie-hero husband of 35 years in 1972, died of age-related causes on her birthday Tuesday at her home in Dana Point, said Jane Mak, a longtime close friend. As Grace Bradley, Boyd appeared in 35 films, including "Too Much Harmony," starring Bing Crosby; "The Big Broadcast of 1938," with W.C. Fields and Bob Hope; and "Come on Marines" with Richard Arlen and Ida Lupino.
SPORTS
September 20, 2011 | Bill Plaschke
He first appears in the movie as he first appeared with the Dodgers, a wallflower pulled reluctantly into the spotlight, a nerd suddenly tapped on the shoulder by the cool kids. The character that is supposed to be Paul DePodesta is a rumpled and bespectacled figure leaning against a wall whispering trade vetoes to a Cleveland Indians colleague. The character that is supposed to be Billy Beane openly wonders who he is, and why everyone thinks he's so smart, and so begins a journey that Dodgers fans will instantly and painfully recognize.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 23, 2014 | By Steve Chawkins
He was a neurosurgeon, a shipping magnate, a pompous headmaster, an autocratic father: He was the self-inflated, often weaselly authority figure whose long, narrow, aristocratic face was as well-known in films and television as his name was obscure. James Rebhorn, a journeyman character actor seen most recently as the father of super-spy Carrie Mathison on "Homeland," died Friday at his home in South Orange, N.J., of melanoma, his wife Rebecca Linn said. He was 65. Rebhorn had more than 100 TV and movie credits, including roles in "Scent of a Woman" and "My Cousin Vinny" - both released in 1992 - and "Meet the Parents" (2000)
IMAGE
March 22, 2014 | By Booth Moore, Los Angeles Times Fashion Critic
Dorothy's pinafore and ruby red slippers, Darth Vader's helmet and cape and Austin Powers' blue velvet suit are just a few of the treasures on display in "Hollywood Costume," the monumental exhibition celebrating 100 years of costume in the movies opening Wednesday at the Phoenix Art Museum, its only stop in the West. Originally organized by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, where it had a sold-out run in 2012-13, the exhibition is curated by Deborah Landis, the David C. Copley chair and the director of the David C. Copley Center of Costume Design at UCLA's School of Theater, Film & Television.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 21, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
Like the eponymous hero of his new biblical epic "Noah," director Darren Aronofsky has proved himself a man obsessively devoted to a formidable undertaking: in Aronofsky's case, combining a scriptural story with blockbuster visuals and a provocative environmentalist undercurrent. In early reviews of "Noah," which opens March 28 in the U.S., film critics are expressing appreciation of Aronofsky's ambition even if they find the movie itself is uneven. Variety's Scott Foundas writes , "If Aronofsky's $130 million, 137-minute movie ultimately feels compromised at all, it's less by studio interference than by its director's own desire to make a metaphysical head movie that is also an accessible action blockbuster …. 'Noah' does not always sit easily astride those competing impulses, but it is never less than fascinating - and sometimes dazzling - in its ambitions.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 21, 2014 | By John Horn
NEW YORK - It was easy to get lost on Darren Aronofsky's ark. Inside a converted Brooklyn armory in late 2012, Aronofsky was shooting "Noah" on a massive vessel that matched the biblical dimensions of the boat, its rough beams lashed together and the hull sealed with pitch. In every corner of the three-story structure rested packs of ersatz animals - insects on one level, snakes and turtles in another corner and, around the bend, lions quite literally lying with lambs. "Animals are fragile.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 21, 2014 | By Oliver Gettell
As the latest film franchise based on a bestselling young-adult book series, "Divergent" arrives in theaters Friday to the delight of die-hard fans. But for those unfamiliar with the dystopian thriller's background and mythology, all this talk of factions and their SAT-word names (what does "abnegation" mean again?) might as well be Greek. Here's a quick primer to get up to speed. The setup: "Divergent" is set in a dystopian Chicago where people are divided into factions based on their personality types: Members of the Dauntless faction are brave, for example, and serve as the warrior class, protecting the city.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 21, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
NEW YORK--Pretty much since the moment it began shooting, Lars von Trier's “Nymphomaniac” has whipped up controversy for its explicit nature and willingness to tackle sexual taboos. The film's frank portrayal of sexual obsession--and a character's eagerness to act thereon - is a notion most English-language films stay away from, and certainly English-language films with mainstream celebrities like Shia LaBeouf. But one of the film's stars says that there's little place or reason for outrage.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 31, 2012 | By David Ng
"Les Misérables" fans of a certain age may remember Colm Wilkinson, the big-voiced stage actor who originated the role of Jean Valjean in London and later on Broadway.  The producers of the new movie version have given the actor a cameo role as the Bishop of Digne, the priest who takes pity on Valjean. It's a brief role but an important one -- his act of kindness sets Valjean on a different path in life. After playing "Les Misérables" on Broadway, Wilkinson embarked on a career in Canada.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 11, 2014 | By Valerie J. Nelson
Shirley Temple Black, who as the most popular child movie star of all time lifted a filmgoing nation's spirits during the Depression and then grew up to be a diplomat, has died. She was 85. Black died late Monday at her home in Woodside, Calif., according to publicist Cheryl J. Kagan. No cause was given. From 1935 through 1938, the curly-haired moppet billed as Shirley Temple was the top box-office draw in the nation. She saved what became 20th Century Fox studios from bankruptcy and made more than 40 movies before she turned 12. PHOTOS: Shirley Temple Black Hollywood recognized the enchanting, dimpled scene-stealer's importance to the industry with a “special award” -- a miniature Oscar -- at the Academy Awards for 1934, the year she sang and danced her way into America's collective heart.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 20, 2014 | By Carolyn Kellogg
George R.R. Martin's "Game of Thrones" -- known to longtime fans as the "Song of Ice and Fire" book series -- is enjoying big success on television screens. But it might also be destined for something bigger: the movies. Martin told the Hollywood Reporter that a big-screen feature -- with a hefty budget -- might be what it takes to bring the story to its grand conclusion. "It all depends on how long the main series runs," Martin said. "Do we run for seven years? Do we run for eight?
ENTERTAINMENT
March 19, 2014 | By Joe Flint
After the coffee. Before deciding whether to see "Nymphomaniac" now or wait for the edited version on cable. The Skinny: Caught Sunday's "The Walking Dead" last night where the Lizzie character got Fredo'd. Godfather fans will get the reference. Tough to watch, but she had to go. Wednesday's roundup includes a recap of Disney's annual meeting and Viacom's settling of a long legal fight with Google's YouTube. Also, a profile of NBC Entertainment chief Bob Greenblatt.
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