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A crowded weekend, but I have the Box Office, Jon Pratt. and William Goldman RIP   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, November 19, 2018 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald tops the chart with 62.2MM, a slice less than the 74.4MM of the last one. This playing more like a sequel than a Potter film, or even a Marvel film. Overseas receipts, where Fantastic Beasts did quite well, will tell the tale of whether this sub-franchise makes it to the originally planned five-film arc.  The Grinch places with 38.2MM on a 44 percent dop, which should be leggy enough to carry it to the real holdiday bonanza next month.  Bohemian Rhapsody shows with 15.7MM on a 50 percent drop as it rocks onward toward 400MM worldwide.  Instant Family takes the fourth slot with 14.7MM against a 48MM budget, suggesting people want Will Ferrell with Wahlberg in this type of vehicle. Widows rounds out the Top Five with 12.3MM against a 42MM budget, which spells trouble for this well-reviewed, well-cast picture.

JON PRATT, Pate's frontman, helped change the face of science on Friday as representatives of more than 60 nations, gathered in Versailles, France, approved a new definition for the kilogram based on the work of Pratt's team at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Not bad for government work.

WILLIAM GOLDMAN, who won Academy Awards for his screenplays for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and All the President’s Men and who, despite being one of Hollywood’s most successful screenwriters, was an outspoken critic of the movie industry, died on Friday in Manhattan. He was 87. Mr. Goldman also wrote the screenplays for popular films like Misery, A Bridge Too Far, The Stepford Wives and Chaplin. He was a prolific novelist as well, and several of his screenplays were adapted from his own novels, notably The Princess Bride and Marathon Man.

1105 Reads

Paisley Underground, DeVotchKa, Johnny Marr, Baby Sloth   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, November 16, 2018 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



...with THE PAISLEY UNDERGROUND!  A two-part (Part 1, Part 2) feature from the Old Grey Whistle Test on L.A.'s psychedelic-flavored, West Coast scene in the mid-80s. Bands featured include the Long Ryders, Prime Movers, Thin White Rope, Pontiac Brothers and the Rain Parade with a 6 minute live version of No Easy Way Down. The Long Ryders get short shrift so I'll add in their later OGWT appearance to play "Looking For Lewis & Clark." The term "Paisley Underground" is believed to have been jokingly coined by Michael Quercio of the band The Three O'Clock, so I'll toss in the clip for "Her Head's Revolving" as a bonus. Other bands associated with the scene not featured include Green On Red -- sometimes likened to The Doors for songs like "Sea of Cortez" -- and The Bangs, a/k/a The Bangles, with an early track, "The Real World."  DOUBLE BONUS: The Guardian Music Blog has a link-rich piece on the Rain Parade and other Paisley Underground bands.

DEVOTCHKA visits KEXP for a mini-session.

JOHNNY MARR visits KEXP for a mini-session.

PORTRAYAL OF GUILT advance streams Let Pain Be Your Guide.

FOXWARREN (incl Andy Schauf) shares "To Be."

TINY RUINS shares "School Of Design."

EASYBEATS: The fish, the barrel, the smoking gun!

NIRVANA: An oral history of Unplugged.

LOUDON WAINWRIGHT III talks to The Believer about retrospectives.

ELTON JOHN's Christmas commercial for John Lewis & Partners is a thing.

THE NUMBER ONES looks at Marvin Gaye's brooding masterwork "I Heard It Through The Grapevine."

NOW SHOWING: This weekend's wide releases include Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, which is currently scoring 50 percent on the ol' Tomatometer; Instant Family, currently scoring 72 percent; and Widows, opening at 92 percent. A Private War expands near-wide 87 percent.

DUMBO, as imagined by Tim Burton, shares a trailer online.

SANDRA BULLOCK has donated 500K for relief efforts during the California wildfires.

AMY SCHUMER has been hospitalized with some pregnancy complications.

LILY JAMES & ARMIE HAMMER are starring in a new adaptation of Rebecca (Hitchcock did a prior version).

TIGER WOODS ex-mistress, Jamie Jungers, is rescued from a Vegas drug den where she was trading sex for heroin and speed... by Dog the Bounty Hunter.

ROY CLARK, the country singer and multi-instrumentalist best known as a longtime host of "Hee Haw," the television variety show that brought country music to millions of households each week, died on Thursday at his home in Tulsa, Okla. He was 85.

FLORIDA's BREVARD ZOO introduces a two-toed sloth baby.

AT LEAST 8 MOUNTAIN LIONS are alive and moving based on GPS collars, apparently surviving the wildfires. But the fate of five others — including P-22 — remains unclear.

CHINA quietly shelved a controversial decision to legalize the use of tiger and rhinoceros parts for scientific and medical purposes amid public outcries that such a move could increase the risks for endangered wildlife.

A NORTH CAROLINA MAN  said he punched a bear in the nose after it attacked him outside his home.

1185 Reads

The Selecter, Natalie Prass, Gretchen Peters, Dandy Warhols, Mandarin Duck   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, November 15, 2018 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


THE FLYING BURRITO BROTHERS cover "Six Days on the Road."

THE SELECTER visits Morning Becomes Eclectic.

NATALIE PRASS plays a mini-set at Iceland Airwaves.

GRETCHEN PETERS plays the Mountain Stage.


BAD RELIGION shares "My Sanity."

THE VACCINES share "All My Friends Are Falling In Love."


THE DANDY WARHOLS share a 360-degree, NSFW-language video for "Be Alright."

JEFF TWEEDY tours the soundtrack of his life.

NICK CAVE's newsletters directly address questions from fans and cultivate candid discussions about grief, friendship, and other topics.

BOYGENIUS gives a group talk to Loud and Quiet.

THE NUMBER ONES looks at Diana Ross & The Supremes' operatic masterpiece "Love Child."


LADY GAGA meditates on A Star is Born for Variety. And Bradley Cooper reveals who almost had his part.

DAN ACKROYD gave another update on a possible Ghostbusters 3.

THE ROYAL FAMILY published a candid photo.

GWEN STEFANI & BLAKE SHELTON: Considering surrogacy?

THE BACHELOR's  Arie Luyendyk Jr. and fiancée Lauren Burnham are pregnant with their first child.

JACK REACHER will be taller than Tom Cruise in a new streaming series.


THE MANDARIN DUCK was spotted again in Central Park after several days of going unseen.

SAND CATS retain a kitten-like look their whole lives.

RACCOONS caused a false rabies scare in West Virginia, but they were just drunk.

IF KOMODO DRAGONS were human, they'd be more likely to be cuddled up at home watching a horror movie than starring in it, despite having razor-sharp teeth and poisonous venom.

1128 Reads

Axis: Sova, Leon bridges, Raccoonists, Robyn, Superchunk, Cat vs Rat   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, November 14, 2018 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


JIMMY RUFFIN asks "What Becomes of the Brokenhearted?"

AXIS: SOVA advance streams the new wavey Shampoo You.

LEON BRIDGES visits Morning Becomes Eclectic.

THE RACCOONISTS: Jeff Tweedy and his sons cover George Harrison, and “Skip” Spence for a Lagniappe Session.

ROBYN stops by World Cafe.

SUPERCHUNK shares a surprise single; the B-side is a Klaus Nomi cover.


CHERRY GLAZERR shares "Daddi."

ELVIS COSTELLO tals about Look Now, mortality, and musical evolution.

THE BEATLES: Producer Giles Martin shares the remarkable stories, early demos, revealing outtakes and stunning new mixes from the just-released deluxe version of "The White Album."

CAKE: John McCrea on the band's first new music since 2011, unionizing, and why there still isn't anything rebellious about a leather jacket.

THE NUMBER ONES looks at Jeannie C. Riley's feminist country anthem "Harper Valley P.T.A." and the Beatles' "Hey Jude," the longest-reigning No. 1 single of the band's career.


GAME OF THRONES: Winter is Coming in April, with a teaser trailer now.

TOY STORY 4 has a second teaser online.

RYAN REYNOLDS is the star voice of Pokémon: Detective Pikachu.

STAN LEE, remembered comically by Brian Michael Bendis... and many more.

ENNIO MORRICONE: German Playboy admits misquoting him on Quentin Tarantino.

THE "ROSS FROM FRIENDS" robbery case has a suspect under arrest.

DOUGLAS RAIN, the voice of HAL 9000 in 2001: A Space Odyssey, is dead at 90.


A FERAL SENIOR CAT beomes a Mama's boy.

CAT vs RAT: Who You Got?

A MUSEUM in Japan spends most of its day refusing entry to 2 cats trying to get in.

A LOBSTER was busted out of a Red Lobster by Florida Woman.

1103 Reads

Stan Lee, RIP   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, November 13, 2018 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


I was going to largely skip today due to the slowness of news and the press of my schedule Monday, but...

STAN LEE, who as chief writer and editor of Marvel Comics helped create some of the most enduring superheroes of the 20th century and was a major force behind the breakout successes of the comic-book industry in the 1960s and early ’70s, died on Monday in Los Angeles. He was 95. That NYT obit hits most of the main points.  If you want a deeper, nerdier, and a bit more critical dive, try The Comics Journal. If you want a bigger-picture look at the insights that made Lee arguably the most important figure in pop culture since Walt Disney, try Jonathan V. Last at the Weekly Standard.  People will focus on Lee as a self-made media creation (which has its lighter and darker sides), I would note that one of his earlier and subtler marketing techniques was the inclusion of reader letters (with answers) and editorials in the comic books themselves. Lee understood the value of creating community much earlier than many. As a creator, he will be remembered for bringing character into superhero comics in a way largely taken for granted by later generations. But those generations learned from Lee that you didn't need to be perfect to be heroic. Conversely, he understood that tales of heroism provide moral lessons for the young. "With great power comes great responsibility" is merely the best-known of these.  And despite the fact that comics were largely considered as a product for children, Lee's Marvel generally did not talk down to its audience, either thematically or textually. The Marvel books I grew up with in the 70s and early 80s were generally written with a college-level vocabulary, for which I will always be grateful. FFTB.

1095 Reads

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