Movie review: Mark Wahlberg, Peter Berg reteam for gripping oil rig tragedy 'Deepwater Horizon'

Certain ingredients help a disaster movie qualify as "fun." These include, but are not limited to, asteroids; Carla Gugino, Dwayne Johnson and Alexandra Daddario outrunning an earthquake-created tsunami; global warming, or icing, on a Roland Emmerich "Day After Tomorrow" scale; and, from the genre's '70s heyday, the "all-star cast" inclusion of ...Read more

Melissa Joan Hart teases the possible return of 'Clarissa Explains it All'

Clarissa may have been the one to explain it all back in the 1990s but actress Melissa Joan Hart has been explaining plenty herself during a recent string of interviews.

Hart, who played a precocious teen girl in Nickelodeon's "Clarissa Explains it All" and a precocious teen witch in ABC and the WB's "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch," made headlines...Read more

Redstones officially urge Viacom-CBS merger talks

LOS ANGELES -- Sumner Redstone and his daughter, Shari, have officially taken a key step toward putting Viacom and CBS back together again.

National Amusements Inc., the Redstone-controlled movie theater chain and investment vehicle, on Thursday sent a letter to the boards of directors at both companies urging them to consider merging.

The ...Read more

'Marvel's Luke Cage' shows power in diversity

LOS ANGELES -- There wasn't a lot of diversity through the early decades of comic books. There were more Martians fighting criminals than there were representatives of most Earth races.

That began to change in 1972 when the Marvel trio of Archie Goodwin, George Tuska and John Romita Sr. came along and created Luke Cage, a black hero who would ...Read more

Randy Newman on stripping down his complicated music for his 'Songbook' series

Randy Newman knows what it's like to be confused.

"Sometimes at the movies I've gotta ask my kids what the hell's going on," said the veteran songwriter and Oscar-winning film composer. "I'm real loud in the theater: 'Wait, who's that guy?'"

So although he has always delighted in using his records to set up trap doors of intent -- as in his ...Read more

Capsule reviews of feature films

BAD MOMS. 2.5 stars. Mila Kunis stars as a stressed-out working mother who teams with two similarly overtaxed women (Kristen Bell, Kathryn Hahn), rebelling against a hissy PTA prez (Christina Applegate) in a mildly amusing, moderately raunchy, mostly schematic comedy from the writers of "The Hangover" franchise. 1 hr. 41 R (profanity, sex, ...Read more

Album review: Warpaint gets sultry on the dance floor

Warpaint's unerring feel for gauzy hooks and slinky arrangements germinated over a decade and flourished on the quartet's excellent 2014 self-titled album.

But the band has always nudged its arrangements onto the dance floor -- subtly on record, more overtly on stage -- and "Heads Up" (Rough Trade) gives the group's inner disco ball a few extra...Read more

Agnes Nixon, creator of 'One Life to Live' and 'All My Children,' dies at 93

The grand dame of daytime television drama, Agnes Nixon liked to say that "everyone's life is a soap opera." For proof, she offered up her own.

She had an "abandonment complex" because her parents divorced soon after she was born. Growing up in an Irish-Catholic enclave in Nashville in the 1930s and 1940s, she felt painfully different because ...Read more

Springsteen's father looms large in 'Born to Run' autobiography

Bruce Springsteen's autobiography, "Born to Run," is more aptly titled than even diehards might realize.

"Born to Run," of course, was also the title of the album that brought him the double-trouble of Time and Newsweek cover stories in 1975 and launched him into an uneasy stardom. It contains songs that have become fixtures at his concerts -- ...Read more

Theater review: In 'Visiting Edna' by David Rabe, cancer crashes a life

CHICAGO -- Although David Rabe's deeply disturbing new play -- a howl of authorial anguish, really -- is fundamentally about an ordinary American mother and her equally quotidian son, the distinguished American playwright employs a couple of extraordinary devices. One Steppenwolf Theatre Company actress in the premiering drama, Sally Murphy, is ...Read more

Theater review: In 'Man in the Ring,' a fighter is dead, another shattered for life

CHICAGO -- On March 24, 1962, at Madison Square Garden in New York, welterweight boxer Emile Griffith killed a man in the ring. If you were around back then and a boxing fan, you likely watched the death on WGN-TV.

Griffith killed 25-year-old Cuban boxer Benny "The Kid" Paret, the Chicago Tribune reported shortly thereafter, by beating him ...Read more

Review: Stars swap songs at Country Hall of Fame benefit

LOS ANGELES -- Education is a key mission at Nashville's Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.

That made the 11th edition of the organization's annual All for the Hall benefit concert and fundraiser an ideal companion piece. Emcee and 20-time Grammy Award winner Vince Gill and guest participants James Taylor, Joe Walsh, Kacey Musgraves and ...Read more

'The Lion King' is getting a 'live-action' remake, with Jon Favreau to direct

It's the circle of life in Hollywood: "The Lion King" is being remade, and Jon Favreau's in charge.

The Oscar-winning 1994 animated film, which raked in $968.8 million worldwide, including $422.8 million domestically, is being fast-tracked for a "reimagining," the Walt Disney Studios announced Wednesday, with an eye toward using the same high-...Read more

Movie review: 'Deepwater Horizon' captures chaos of oil rig disaster

With a scant introduction, director Peter Berg airlifts the audience into the chaotic micro-culture of offshore oil drilling in "Deepwater Horizon." Our hero, Mike Williams (Mark Wahlberg), barely has time to kiss his wife (Kate Hudson) and kid (Stella Allen) before we're awash in the jargon and joshing of roughnecks, engineers and BP company ...Read more

Meet a King of take-charge types

No one rules the members of King.

Based in Los Angeles, this crafty R&B trio writes, performs and produces its own music, a rare instance of artistic autonomy in a world defined by behind-the-scenes direction.

What's more, twin sisters Paris and Amber Strother and their friend Anita Bias handle the business side of their band as well. When ...Read more

Movie guide: Capsule listings, reviews of current releases

Ratings by the Motion Picture Association of America are: (G) for general audiences; (PG) parental guidance urged because of material possibly unsuitable for children; (PG-13) parents are strongly cautioned to give guidance for attendance of children younger than 13; (R) restricted, younger than 17 admitted only with parent or adult guardian; (...Read more

Redbox's Top 10 DVD rentals

The Top 10 DVD rentals at Redbox kiosks for the week of Sept. 19:

1. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows -- Paramount

2. The Huntsman: Winter's War -- Universal

3. The Nice Guys -- Warner

4. Now You See Me 2 -- Lionsgate

5. Captain America: Civil War -- Disney

6. Money Monster -- Sony

7. The Jungle Book (2016) -- Disney

8. ...Read more

'Miss Peregrine' expected to top 'Deepwater Horizon,' 'Magnificent Seven' at box office

LOS ANGELES -- Tim Burton's new movie about an orphanage for fantastically gifted kids is expected to debut at the head of its class at the box office this weekend, expelling last week's victor, "The Magnificent Seven," from the top of the charts.

"Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children," from 20th Century Fox and Chernin Entertainment, is...Read more

All of Bob Dylan's 1966 live shows in 36-CD box set due Nov. 11

A 36-CD box set featuring every known recording of Bob Dylan's historic 1966 concert tour will be released Nov. 11, providing a companion piece to last year's ambitious set documenting his studio recordings from 1965 and 1966.

"Bob Dylan: The 1966 Live Recordings" will feature songs taken from soundboard tapes, mobile recording trucks and ...Read more

'Real Housewife' husband Herman Echevarria dead at 61

MIAMI -- Herman Echevarria, a made-in-Miami success story -- Cuban exile turned Hialeah politico turned business leader and reluctant TV star as husband to a "Real Housewife" -- was found dead Monday morning at his apartment in downtown Miami's Epic Hotel, according to Miami police.

Echevarria was 61.

Echevarria had served as a Hialeah council...Read more