March 30, 2012 |
Did the ancient Greeks think in terms of sequels? The ongoing adventures of their mythological gods certainly lend themselves easily to serialized entertainment. And so following the box-office success of 2010's "Clash of the Titans" comes the more-of-the-same sequel "Wrath of the Titans. " Directed this time out by Jonathan Liebesman, the film lacks inspiration or zest in storytelling, performance or action. This is pure product, a movie desperately without energy or enthusiasm of any kind.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 1, 1989 |
"I am sure of one thing -- it isn't the great book I had hoped it would be. It's just a run-of-the-mill book. And the awful thing is that it is absolutely the best I can do." --John Steinbeck For John Steinbeck, a writer more famous for his rhetoric than his subtlety, those words jotted in a diary more than five decades ago were probably his greatest understatement. On Sunday, more than 100 writers, scholars and Steinbeck enthusiasts gathered in Santa Monica to celebrate Steinbeck on the 50th anniversary of that "run-of-the-mill book," the Pulitzer-Prize winning novel "The Grapes of Wrath," first printed on April 14, 1939.
August 31, 2008 |
History IS made of small moments. The big ones matter, too, of course -- the wars, the famines, the epidemics that define eras. But the events that fall outside those tethering moments can tell us just as much, if not more, about a time and a place, as Rick Wartzman makes abundantly clear in his new work exploring a single local political issue facing the Kern County Board of Supervisors in 1939. The issue was "that damnable book," John Steinbeck's "The Grapes of Wrath," which Kern County's political and business elite believed had held them and, by extension, California's entire Central Valley up to national scorn and mockery.
March 29, 2012 |
When it comes to cinematic scapegoats, few movies have been hammered like 2010's "Clash of the Titans. " Even though the Warner Bros.Greek god drama grossed nearly $500 million worldwide, the film's last-minute 3-D conversion, done to take advantage of higher stereoscopic ticket prices, sparked uncharacteristically blunt condemnations from industry leaders. DreamWorks Animation's Jeffrey Katzenberg said the film's hasty 3-D makeover "snookered" ticket buyers, while "Avatar" creator James Cameron said of the conversion, "There was no artistry to it whatsoever.
April 2, 2012 |
Despite the arrival of new foes at the multiplex, "The Hunger Games" survived another weekend in the No. 1 position at the domestic box office and surged past the quarter-billion dollar mark after just 10 days in release. The movie starring Jennifer Lawrence as heroine Katniss Everdeen collected $61.1 million this weekend, according to an estimate from distributor Lionsgate, bringing its total to $251 million in the U.S. and Canada. "The Hunger Games" easily picked off two new films, the 3-D sequel "Wrath of the Titans" and "Mirror Mirror," a modern spin on the Snow White fairy tale.
March 30, 2012 |
Moviegoers are expected to return to the multiplex this weekend for second helpings of "The Hunger Games," pushing the teen epic to No. 1 at the box office again. After debuting with a record-breaking $152.5 million last weekend, the adaptation of Suzanne Collins' bestselling young adult novel has continued to rake in massive ticket sales this week. Since Monday, the movie has grossed $29.2 million, and it could collect more than $60 million in its second weekend, according to those who have seen pre-release audience surveys.