October 7, 2012 |
If there's anything more American than a college football game, it's the marching band's halftime show. Baseball games don't have it. Pro football games rarely have it. Hockey games definitely don't have it. It's a beloved oddity of tuba-flavored Americana jammed halfway between four quarters of watching giant men batter one another. And despite the brutality of American football - where the athletes get bigger and faster every year and careers are brutish and short - marching bands have helped usher nerd culture into the mainstream.
September 20, 2012 |
Set in South Dakota near the Lakota Pine Ridge Reservation in 1899, nine years after the Massacre of Wounded Knee, the film "West of Thunder" is a strangely earnest revenge picture, a kindhearted Western with its fair share of killing. A stranger named Henry Seed (Dan Davies, also the film's co-writer) arrives in a small town and soon begins knocking off residents with what seems an almost mystical power. Seed turns the injustices suffered by the natives back onto the settlers, acting as a righteous defender of the people who have been shunted off to their reservation.
September 18, 2012 |
The NFL is a passing league, but sometimes it's also a league for the passed over, providing opportunities for players who feel overlooked, undervalued, ignored. In some of the bigger Week 3 games, those castoffs can exact some revenge. Arizona quarterback Kevin Kolb faces Philadelphia, the team that traded him in favor of Michael Vick. San Francisco's Randy Moss goes back to Minnesota, where his career began - a Vikings team that now employs fired 49ers coach Mike Singletary.
August 14, 2012 |
The man standing at Norman Johnson's door that cold January evening was a stranger who might have seemed vaguely familiar. Johnson, a retired high school instructor who taught English and coached tennis and football for 35 years in this unassuming town, probably didn't even have his door locked when he came to greet the bearded, gray-haired visitor. The man bluntly asked him, "Are you Norm Johnson?" When the 72-year-old Johnson didn't answer quickly enough, the man asked again.
August 9, 2012 |
The U.S. women's soccer team got the payback it was looking for Thursday by beating Japan, 2-1, in the Olympic gold-medal game before a crowd of 80,203 at Wembley Stadium. The attendance was an Olympic record as well as the largest crowd ever to see a women's game in Britain. The U.S. last played before a crowd that big in the 1999 World Cup final at the Rose Bowl. For the Americans, the loss avenged a painful decision in last summer's World Cup final, when the Japanese twice rallied from deficits to win the title on penalty kicks.
August 5, 2012 |
FLORESTA, Brazil - The little priest leans in, as though to make a confession. The subject is forbidden, but tonight he will talk. " A violencia ," he says. The violence of his account seems impossible. This small town, called Floresta, blooms in Brazil's sertao , a wild and arid land. On its surface, Floresta is all pinks and yellows and purples, its facades covered with thick layers of paint. The houses stand in rows around a tree-lined square, and in the center sits a church.
August 1, 2012 |
HARIPUR, Pakistan - Suleman Khan demanded justice from the tribal elders. His wife had slept with another man, he said, and he wanted their permission to seek revenge. The elders deliberated for an hour, and then announced their verdict: Punish the man and his family any way you see fit. Within minutes, Khan and his three brothers had broken into the man's house. Only his 45-year-old mother, Shehnaz Bibi, and her teenage son were home. Armed with rifles and canes, they dragged Bibi out of the house and brought her to the village square.
July 12, 2012 |
Before his death last August, Raoul Ruiz's "The Mysteries of Lisbon" earned just praise as a late masterpiece of epic, sumptuous formalism from the prolific Chilean filmmaker. His English-language thriller, "Blind Revenge," completed a few years ago, won't necessarily harm the eccentric director's reputation and, in fact, its pockets of weirdness and the familiar Ruiz theme of the inconvenience of the past might draw the curious. Others will likely shrug. Slapped with a new, more exploitative title after originally released in the U.K. as "A Closed Book," writer Gilbert Adair's "The Servant"-meets-"Sleuth" scenario has newly blind, grumpily witted British critic Sir Paul (Tom Conti, sporting black shades)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 6, 2012 |
SAN JOSE - A jury has found a San Francisco man not guilty of felony assault and felony elder abuse, despite his admission that he attacked the priest accused of molesting him nearly four decades ago. The 10-man, two-woman panel also said Thursday that William Lynch was not guilty of misdemeanor elder abuse in the 2010 attack on Father Jerold Lindner. The 67-year-old Catholic priest has been linked to more than a dozen alleged victims - including his own nieces, nephew and sister - but never has been brought to trial because the statute of limitations in every case had run out. The jury was split on a final charge against Lynch: misdemeanor assault.