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Opening Night

September 6, 2012 | By Steven Zeitchik
TORONTO -- The Toronto International Film Festival kicked off Thursday night with a peek into the future -- in more ways than one. The festival's annual opening-night gala at the city's upscale Roy Thomson Hall featured the world premiere of "Looper," Rian Johnson's dystopian time-travel tale about a hit man circa 2044 named Joe (Joseph Gordon-Levitt). Joe is a "looper," tasked with offing mob targets sent from the future. But he finds himself in a pickle when he is unable to shoot a target who is a future version of himself (Bruce Willis)
September 5, 2012 | By Alana Semuels
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- It included six straight hours of speechifying, mind-bendingly long lines to buy overpriced water and hot dogs and the requirement that all umbrellas be abandoned at the entrance. But delegates inside the Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte gave high marks to the opening night of the Democratic National Convention, emphasizing that they're just as enthusiastic this time around as they were in 2008. “I have been coming here since [Walter F.] Mondale ran for president and this was the best I've heard,” said Elsie Burkhalter, a delegate from Louisiana.
September 5, 2012 | By Sam Farmer
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — If the Dallas Cowboys are indeed America's Team, Wednesday night was sort of like their national convention. Lots of jumping around, back-slapping, and reveling in promises kept. And the New York Giants? They just kept dropping the balloons. The normally sure-handed Victor Cruz, for instance, saw the football slide through his hands three times on a night the defending Super Bowl champions would love to forget. The Cowboys sacked Eli Manning three times in the 24-17 victory and — to the dismay of the packed house at MetLife Stadium — never allowed the Giants' offense to get in a groove.
September 5, 2012 | By Robert Lloyd, Television Critic
The multi-channel miniseries called "The Democratic National Convention" got underway Tuesday night in Charlotte, N.C. Unlike the comparable Republican miniseries, which was subject to some rescheduling (though not, really, shortening) due to the late-breaking news that was Hurricane Isaac, it has been planned from the start to last only three nights. In Charlotte, as in Tampa, much of the convention takes place out of view. The networks' disinclination to air more than an hour of it any night seemingly has been justified by the low ratings for last week's GOP meet, though ratings should not be what decides such coverage.
September 4, 2012 | By Alana Semuels
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- It's difficult to find Republicansat the Democratic National Convention unless they are protesting in the free speech zone outside the convention center. But a handful of ex-Republicans are attending the convention, something organizers tried to hit home on opening night Tuesday -- even though some have not voted Republican for some time. First was Doug Stern, a former Republican firefighter who said he was supporting Obama after seeing Republican governors try to cut back collective bargaining rights for first responders and other public workers.
September 4, 2012 | By Mark Z. Barabak
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The patchwork quilt that is the Democratic Party base -- women, Latinos, African-Americans -- will be on full display at Tuesday night's opening session of the national party convention. The highlight will be a prime-time address by First Lady Michelle Obama who is expected to play the same role Ann Romney did one week ago at the GOP gathering in Tampa: eschewing hard-edged politics for a soft-focus testimonial to her husband. The keynote speech will be delivered by San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro, marking the first time a Latino has delivered the marquee speech that has sometimes served as a political launching pad to bigger and better things.
August 13, 2012 | By Ellen Olivier
Following Sunday's opening night performance of “Red” at the Mark Taper Forum, theatergoers merely had to stroll down Grand Avenue to see eight Mark Rothko paintings at the Museum of Contemporary Art, where the after-party took place.   The play is about the artist; the paintings are part of MOCA's permanent collection. The L.A. opening of the Tony Award-winning play, starring Alfred Molina and Jonathan Groff, was packed with celebrities, among them Leonard Nimoy, the artist, art collector and original Mr. Spock of TV's “Star Trek,” and Zachary Quinto, Mr. Spock of the 2009 and 2013 film versions.
July 31, 2012 | By Katherine Skiba, Chicago Tribune
WASHINGTON - First Lady Michelle Obama will address the opening night of the Democratic National Convention on Sept. 4, the Obama campaign and convention organizers announced Tuesday. San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro - like the first lady and the president, a graduate of Harvard Law - will deliver the keynote speech that evening, organizers said. Castro will be the first Latino tapped for a keynote speech at a Democratic National Convention, they said. The convention, held in Charlotte, N.C., will run through Sept.
July 5, 2012 | By Patrick Goldstein
When I was with a group of parents earlier this week, watching our kids play in a 14-and-under baseball tournament, I asked them how many of the boys - aged 13 and 14--had gone to see the R-rated movie “Ted.” The answer: Just about all of 'em. But here's what I found really surprising: Nearly all of them went with their mothers. Put simply: Despite its rampant drug use, crude sexual banter and profanity-fueled humor, “Ted” has become a family movie. I have to admit that I wasn't exactly shocked.
June 24, 2012 | Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times Theater Critic
This post has been updated. What better way to usher in summer than by celebrating legends outdoors with a loaded picnic basket, the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra and a night sky streaked with pastel fireworks as though Monet had been dispatched by God to spruce up the heavens? Reba McEntire, the queen of country, and Chaka Khan, the queen of funk - two singers whose genre-crossing talents have impressed connoisseurs from across the musical spectrum - were inducted into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame on Friday.
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