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Spy Kids

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ENTERTAINMENT
April 10, 2001 | ROBERT W. WELKOS
A flurry of new releases failed to topple "Spy Kids" from its perch atop the weekend box-office chart. The family comedy starring Antonio Banderas grossed $17.1 million to remain No. 1 for the second week in a row. The R-rated Morgan Freeman thriller "Along Came a Spider" came in a strong second with $16.7 million in ticket sales and a healthy per screen average of $6,606. It was followed by the R-rated drug-themed Johnny Depp film, "Blow," which grossed $12.4 million.
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ENTERTAINMENT
October 8, 2013 | By Carolyn Kellogg
Harvey Weinstein has joined the BBC to help produce Leo Tolstoy's classic "War and Peace" as a miniseries. The Hollywood Reporter writes, "The drama series based on Tolstoy's epic will consist of six hourlong episodes and eight 44-minute episodes for international markets and is scheduled to air on BBC One in 2015. " Weinstein, of course, has a long list of literary adaptations in his credits as producer and executive producer: "Jane Eyre," "Emma," and "The English Patient" in 1996, "Mansfield Park" and "The Cider House Rules" in 1999, "Cold Mountain" in 2003 and "The Lord of the Rings" series are just a few. But for all his bookishness, Weinstein has not yet adapted a novel by Tolstoy.
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ENTERTAINMENT
April 17, 2001 | ROBERT W. WELKOS
The family-oriented action/comedy "Spy Kids," starring Antonio Banderas, left the competition reeling again, fighting off challenges from three new films over the Easter weekend to remain atop the box-office charts for the third straight week. "Spy Kids" grossed $12.5 million. Coming in second place was the Morgan Freeman thriller "Along Came a Spider," which took in $11.5 million. The highest debuting film was Miramax's romantic comedy "Bridget Jones's Diary" starring Renee Zellweger.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 30, 2013 | By Mary McNamara, Los Angeles Times Television Critic
My mother taught me to begin any criticism with a compliment, so here it is: CBS' new comedy "We Are Men" lasts only half an hour and stars four likable performers, including Tony Shalhoub and Kal Penn. Now for the criticism. "We Are Men" lasts an entire half-hour and stars four likable performers, including Tony Shalhoub and Kal Penn. Television prides itself on allowing the writer to be king, and that is never more clear than when a show is far better cast than it is conceived.
NEWS
February 20, 2003 | Susan King
"Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams" Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino Dimension, $29 for DVD; $23 for VHS The sequel to the 2001 family adventure-comedy hit may not be a great movie, but thanks to its engaging writer-director-producer-composer-editor-production designer Robert Rodriguez, the DVD is breezy fun.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 4, 2003
The Cortez family and the rest of the kooks are back, and their new adventure sends the kids into another dimension, the one you need polarized glasses to watch. Writer-director Robert Rodriguez used digital cameras to photograph in 3-D the segments that take place inside a video game.Seemingly a big kid at heart or a dad who knows exactly how to entertain kids, Rodriguez is in full command of his creative energies with this series, and there's no reason to doubt this one won't deliver as well.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 28, 2003 | R. Kinsey Lowe, Times Staff Writer
"If you build it, they will come." The ghostly directive from "Field of Dreams" applied doubly this weekend to family entertainment and movies for adults as "Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over" confounded predictions and shot to the top of the box office, and "Seabiscuit" was off and running at a solid clip in fifth position. "Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over" performed significantly ahead of expectations with an estimated $32.5 million, a better opening weekend than either of the first two movies in the series.
BUSINESS
April 10, 2001 | RICHARD NATALE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Hit family films such as "Spy Kids" are Hollywood's Eldorado, fueling out-sized home video and merchandise sales that can add up to record profits. Miramax/Dimension's "Spy Kids" is expected to ring up U.S. box office receipts close to $100 million, making its home video and DVD potential huge when it is released by parent Walt Disney Co. The stronger family film titles can sell up to 1 million units for every $10 million grossed at the box office.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 13, 2006 | Mark Olsen, Special to The Times
The first film adaptation based on Anthony Horowitz's series of young-adult adventure novels, "Alex Rider: Operation Stormbreaker" feels like a contrived attempt to jump-start a franchise along the lines of "Spy Kids" or the "Harry Potter" series. Recognizable British actors appear in every conceivably sized role, and the film ends with a decidedly "on to the next adventure" moment.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 30, 2001 | KENNETH TURAN, TIMES FILM CRITIC
Anyone who's been a child on the verge of adolescence can empathize with 12-year-old Carmen Cortez (Alexa Vega) when, awash in disbelief, she manages to gasp, "My parents can't be spies. They're not cool enough." Cool or not, the mother and father of Carmen and her 8-year-old brother, Juni (Daryl Sabara), are definitely secret agents.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 20, 2011 | By Noel Murray, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Super 8 Paramount, $29.99; Blu-ray, $44.99 There hasn't been a Hollywood movie yet this year with a better first hour than "Super 8. " J.J. Abrams' sci-fi/actioner about teenage filmmakers in late-'70s Ohio understands how kids relate to each other and how much fun it can be to gather with friends and make something. All of this comes through in the early scenes of likable young folks shooting a zombie movie in and around their small town. "Super 8" loses some of its specialness in its second hour — when the amateur Spielbergs discover that an alien has been abducting their neighbors — but the spirit of camaraderie and youthful adventure never dims.
BUSINESS
September 2, 2011 | By Amy Kaufman, Los Angeles Times
As Americans take advantage of the final days of summer — throwing their last barbecues and beach parties — Labor Day weekend is typically one of the slowest moviegoing periods of the year. Over the holiday weekend in 2010, for example, the highest-grossing film was George Clooney's "The American," which brought in a soft $16.7 million over four days. This year should see similar results, with three new movies poised to collect only a modest number of ticket sales. "Apollo 18," a science-fiction picture shot in documentary style, will probably have the best debut of the new releases.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 22, 2011 | By Mark Olsen, Special to the Los Angeles Times
With all the talk this summer of reboots and prequels, is there a term for a tenuously related but basically the same sequel? In "Spy Kids: All the Time in the World in 4D," Rowan Blanchard and Mason Cook play a new sister-and-brother pair of young-uns initiated into a world of high-tech gadgetry and crime-fighting when they find out their stepmother (Jessica Alba) is a former secret agent. Not even her husband (Joel McHale) knows about her former occupation until she is redrafted into service to capture a pair of mad scientists known as the Timekeeper and Tick Tock (both played by Jeremy Piven)
ENTERTAINMENT
August 18, 2011 | By Julie Makinen and Steven Zeitchik, Los Angeles Times
Moviegoers, at least in the United States, are showing a waning interest in 3-D. So Hollywood is looking to solve the problem as only it can: by adding a new dimension. This time, it's not your sight but your smell that's being brought into the equation: "Spy Kids: All the Time in the World in 4D" director Robert Rodriguez is promising to throw audiences "nose first into the fourth dimension" this weekend when the latest installment in his family-friendly series debuts with "Aroma-Scope," a scratch-and-sniff experience.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 13, 2006 | Mark Olsen, Special to The Times
The first film adaptation based on Anthony Horowitz's series of young-adult adventure novels, "Alex Rider: Operation Stormbreaker" feels like a contrived attempt to jump-start a franchise along the lines of "Spy Kids" or the "Harry Potter" series. Recognizable British actors appear in every conceivably sized role, and the film ends with a decidedly "on to the next adventure" moment.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 6, 2005 | Susan King
Robert Rodriguez has had a rather eclectic film career. Though the Austin, Texas-based filmmaker has directed such violent, R-rated fare as "El Mariachi," "Desperado" and the recent gore-fest "Sin City," the father of four sons has also enjoyed success with his "Spy Kids" adventures. He even successfully reintroduced the old '50s movie experiment of 3-D in his last "Spy Kids" vehicle.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 7, 2002 | KENNETH TURAN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Robert Rodriguez is more than in touch with his inner child, he's involved in a lucrative partnership with the little fellow. Following the disarmingly clever and successful "Spy Kids" with a sequel, "Spy Kids 2: The Island of Lost Dreams," that's almost as good, he's proving himself to be perhaps the most gifted maker of live-action family adventure films around.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 16, 2001 | RICHARD NATALE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
"Spy Kids" soared above a quartet of new competitors to remain at the top of the box-office chart for the Easter holiday weekend with an estimated $12.8 million on 3,172 screens. With many schools around the country in holiday recess this coming week, Robert Rodriguez's family adventure should add handsomely to its already strong $69 million in only three weeks, with the $100-million mark clearly on the horizon.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 26, 2005 | PATRICK GOLDSTEIN
One of the great things about teenagers is that, while they may take a "whatever" approach to the fight over privatizing Social Security or successfully naming the mayor of Los Angeles, they are full of strong opinions about the really important things in life, starting with why Jessica Alba is cool and Lindsay Lohan is not. There is no better way to help decipher the baffling intricacies of pop culture than by corralling a group of teenagers and letting them gab about summer movies.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 30, 2004 | Kevin Crust, Times Staff Writer
As Pinocchio taught us, the transformation from puppet to flesh and blood is not an easy one, and the arrival of TV's "Thunderbirds" in live-action land is a particularly bumpy ride. Ostensibly based on the Gerry Anderson "Supermarionation" action series from the 1960s, the new film borrows its basic setup before quickly deep-sixing International Rescue in favor of a feeble "Spy Kids" imitation.
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