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Entertainment News

Friday 09/04/2015
2015 fall movie preview

The fall movie season used to be the time when you could count on comic-book movies, sequels and remakes to be chased out of the multiplex by more ambitious, adult-oriented fare. But in Hollywood, where it always seems to be summer, the blockbuster has become a year-round fixture.

Thursday 09/03/2015
Dean Jones, durable star of Disney family films, dies at 84

LOS ANGELES — In 1970, Dean Jones was a star in Hollywood and also on Broadway in two very different genres.

Sunday 08/30/2015
Documentary features two ballets designed by Picasso

I have run across a DVD, part of which I fell in love with, and all of which I wish to share with my readers.

Friday 08/28/2015
Taylor Swift invites Lisa Kudrow onstage for 'Smelly Cat'

LOS ANGELES — Continuing her run of inviting surprise guests to join her onstage during her current tour, Taylor Swift performed duets Wednesday night with Selena Gomez and Justin Timberlake.

Sunday 08/23/2015
THE PUBLIC MUSE

SHOULD I BE AFRAID?

Season 8 of 'Murdoch Mysteries' includes 100th episode

The Canadian police series “Murdoch Mysteries” seems to have identity problems. When it started out, Detective William Murdoch (Yannick Bisson) fought crime in Toronto in the late 1890s and managed to invent investigative tools that foreshadowed many of our modern devices. But after a season or so, that concept was dropped, and the writers found it a good idea to introduce famous people from the history of those times.

Sunday 08/16/2015
A fascinating study of geography and the Western movement

Athena Learning has come up with another winner, “The Wild West,” subtitled “A Wild Ride into America’s Historic Frontier.” Actually, both titles are a bit misleading. With British Wild-West enthusiast Ray Mears as author and guide, the eight episodes in this 2-DVD set show how the geography of this country intermeshed with the lives of those who lived in the different sections of the continent and with the pioneers who traversed it to find better lives, to get rich quick, or to prey on the others.

Sunday 08/09/2015
Ronda Rousey to star in film based on autobiography

Fresh off her Ultimate Fighting Championship Bantamweight title win, mixed martial artist Ronda Rousey confirmed she's heading to Hollywood — again.

A rare musical from 1956 television

As part of the now fabled “Max Liebman Presents” series of televised musicals back in the 1950s, Jerome Kern’s “The Cat and the Fiddle” was announced as the next presentation. But I read that sudden copyright problems came up and a musical had to be created in three weeks. The result was “Paris in the Springtime” and it can be seen on a VAI DVD.

Friday 08/07/2015
Robert Downey Jr. is the world's highest paid actor ... again

Robert Downey Jr. has been named the world’s highest paid actor for the third year in a row by Forbes, thanks in no small part to the power of the Chinese box office.

Sunday 08/02/2015
An American musical masterpiece now on DVD

If you are to purchase only one more DVD this year, make it “Show Boat” on the EuroArts label! Having seen but forgotten the details of the telecast of this monumental musical by the Paper Mill Playhouse many years ago, I had only the two film versions to go by and the complete EMI recording on CDs.

Friday 07/31/2015
Lois Lane discovers Superman's secret (again)

Lois Lane finally knows who’s behind Clark Kent’s glasses.

Sunday 07/26/2015
A good cast of stars keep 'Tempest' blowing along

I am of two minds over the Shakespeare Globe productions being released on the Kultur DVD label. Some are quite good, one was absolutely horrible, but all have enough good aspects to make them worth watching. One of the latest, a 2013 production of “The Tempest,” has some excellent points to recommend it.

Friday 07/24/2015
Twitter grieves over Blake Shelton/Miranda Lambert split

If you see any country music fans this week, you may want to give them a hug.

Teen uncovers photos of Nirvana's first concert

After finding a dog-eared photo strip showing her old man palling around with, oh, just rock legend Kurt Cobain of Nirvana, 19-year-old Maggie Poukkula did what any teen might do: She posted them to Twitter.

Sunday 07/19/2015
With Trump out, NBC brainstorming new 'Apprentice' boss

NBC is starting to cast for Donald Trump's successor for the forthcoming season of "The Celebrity Apprentice."

Actor's openness about depression stirs glowing Comic-Con tribute

Those who suffer from clinical depression often feel they're shrouded in darkness. At the recent San Diego Comic-Con, fans of the hit series "Supernatural" shined a light.

Dan W. Quinn sings turn of the (last) century songs

Meet Dan W. Quinn. Or at least hear him on a recent Archeophone CD, “Dan W. Quinn Anthology, The King of Comic Singers 1894-1917.” Here is a top recording star of his time (1859-1938) who, without a beautiful voice but with great style, turned out about 2,500 recordings, 30 of which appear on this disc.

Friday 07/10/2015
Green River Festival Takes Flight

It wouldn’t be the first time a festival hosted three straight days of live music — but The Green River Festival is the only one that allows festival-goers to watch the action from above.

Sunday 06/28/2015
The best “Miss Marple” series now complete in HD

At last, BBC has completed the restoration of the original “Miss Marple” series on DVD. Yes, these are the ones in which Joan Hickson gives the definitive characterization of the seemingly dipsy but razor-sharp village busybody, Jane Marple. With the arrival of Vol. 3, viewers can now enjoy these mysteries that have been not only remastered in high definition but also supplied with subtitles. The latter are, however, often incomplete or paraphrases of what is actually spoken. Why?

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