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'Zombieland: Double Tap' review: Not bad for a wholly unnecessary 10-years-later sequel!

In the misty glade and dusky bog of your memories, can you recall a time when zombies weren't money? The first "Zombieland" came out in 2009, a year before "The Walking Dead" premiered on AMC, back before "World War Z," back before that lousy "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" movie with Blackbeard's zombie crew. Back before a lot of ...Read more

CNN's Democratic primary debate draws 8.3 million viewers on Tuesday

The fourth Democratic presidential primary debate drew an average audience of 8.3 million viewers for CNN on Tuesday, the smallest TV audience for the 2020 White House contenders so far.

The figure from Nielsen is a well below the 8.7 million who watched the first round of CNN's July 30 debate. The decline is likely due to stronger competition ...Read more

At NPR's Tiny Desk, Taylor Swift fully embraces her rep for 'heartache and misery'

Taylor Swift fully embraced her reputation for courting despair as she played an NPR Tiny Desk concert that was broadcast Wednesday.

For the acoustic mini concert, the country-turned-pop star played stripped-down versions of multiple tracks from her latest effort, "Lover," which she called a "very, very happy, romantic album."

However, that ...Read more

Review: 'The Lighthouse' finds Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe in a bamboozler of a tale from the maker of 'The Witch'

A terrific filmmaker, especially since there aren't very many terrific filmmakers, deserves better than to be compared to his previous accomplishments. In other words, I loved director Robert Eggers' debut feature, "The Witch," a 2015 tale of 17th century witchcraft and goat mismanagement, while admiring without quite completely getting the hang...Read more

Scotty Bowers, the golden age of Hollywood's sexual matchmaker, dies

Scotty Bowers was Hollywood's sexual matchmaker during its golden era, a time when its famous stars -- both straight and gay -- had to keep their private lives tucked in the shadows. Or so he said.

A former U.S. marine, gas station attendant and bartender, Bowers -- known as Hollywood's "male madame" -- claimed to have slept with and set up ...Read more

Review: Ignoring the 10-year gap, 'Zombieland: Double Tap' brings its outdated schtick back from the dead

For years, people have wondered why 2009's smash zom-com "Zombieland" never had a sequel. Ruben Fleischer's feature directorial debut put him on the map and firmly established the postmodern zombie craze as a pop phenomenon that shows no signs of stopping. It cemented Emma Stone and Jesse Eisenberg as legitimate stars and even gave Woody ...Read more

Capsule reviews of feature films

BRITTANY RUNS A MARATHON. 3 stars. A hard-partying woman (Jillian Bell) gets a wakeup call from her doctor and begins running, with the ultimate goal of entering the New York City Marathon. Sometimes, it's more about going the distance than winning. 1 hr. 44 R (language, drugs, sex) -- Gary Thompson

DOLEMITE IS MY NAME. 2.5 stars. Eddie Murphy ...Read more

'Lodge 49' is too good for this world. Which is exactly why AMC should keep it around

"On some days, all of the beautiful things in my life break my heart."

So says Sean "Dud" Dudley, played by Wyatt Russell, in the beautiful, some days heartbreaking serial comedy "Lodge 49," whose second season finished Monday on AMC.

Set in Long Beach, Calif., the story centers on Dud, a surfer kept from the water by injury (snake bite in ...Read more

Gloria Allred says her New York Times critics 'don't understand the practice of law'

LOS ANGELES -- On Sunday, Lionsgate held a "tastemaker" screening of its new film "Bombshell," about the women who called out sexual harassment at Fox News. It was a typical awards season event, featuring a Q&A with the movie's stars -- Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman and Margot Robbie -- and a guest list peppered with influencers whose ...Read more

Redbox's Top 10 DVD rentals

The top 10 DVD rentals at Redbox kiosks for the week of Oct. 7:

1. Spider-Man: Far From Home -- Sony

2. Toy Story 4 -- Disney

3. Annabelle Comes Home -- Warner

4. Aladdin (2019) -- Disney

5. John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum -- Lionsgate

6. X-Men: Dark Phoenix -- Fox

7. Men in Black: International -- Sony

8. Midsommar -- Lionsgate

9. ...Read more

Review: Angelina Jolie and Michelle Pfeiffer lock horns in 'Mistress of Evil,' an enjoyably deranged 'Maleficent' sequel

Once upon a time, a Hollywood movie didn't have to be so many things to so many people. It didn't have to set a new opening-weekend record, conquer multiple demographics or plant the seeds of a future franchise to be deemed a reasonable success. But times have changed and reasonable has long gone out the window. Witness the bigger-is-better ...Read more

Review: Taika Waititi's uneven satire 'Jojo Rabbit' is at its best making Nazis, and Hitler, the joke

Unlikely though it sounds, we have a need to laugh at Adolf Hitler, on the movie screen if nowhere else.

Some of our greatest comedy directors, from Charles Chaplin ("The Great Dictator") to Ernst Lubitsch (the brilliant "To Be or Not to Be") to Mel Brooks ("The Producers"), have used der Fuhrer as a figure of fun, trying, perhaps, to make a ...Read more

'Patsy & Loretta' review: On Lifetime, a down-home musical biopic co-starring Chcago stage veteran and Tony winner Jessie Mueller

Sisterhood strong enough to last a Lifetime, the new TV movie "Patsy & Loretta" compresses 18 months of a tragically brief friendship between two country music legends into one pretty good biopic. But the performers lift it up to a higher level. Megan Hilty (who plays and sings Patsy Cline) and Chicago stage alum Jessie Mueller (who plays and ...Read more

Cuba Gooding Jr.'s plea is overshadowed by 12 new misconduct allegations

Oscar winner Cuba Gooding Jr. has pleaded not guilty to four misdemeanor counts related to two allegations of sexual misconduct in New York.

The "Jerry Maguire" star, 51, already faced a charge of forcible touching related to an incident at a Manhattan bar over the summer. But a new charge laid out in the indictment Tuesday stems from an ...Read more

The Black Keys' Dan Auerbach on falling back in love with the electric guitar on 'Let's Rock'

The Black Keys had become a burden.

Blues-rock duo Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney have known each other since elementary school in Akron, Ohio.

By the time of "Turn Blue" in 2014, the guitar band had been grinding for eight albums. Catching fire at the start of this decade with catchy hits like "Tighten Up," "Lonely Boy," and "Gold on the ...Read more

Joni Mitchell makes rare public appearance at Brandi Carlile 'Blue' tribute

LOS ANGELES -- The exhortation "Let's get this party started!" morphed into "Let's keep the party going!" with singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile's heartfelt homage Monday to Joni Mitchell in the form of a top-to-bottom performance of Mitchell's 1971 album "Blue" at Walt Disney Concert Hall.

The idea was sparked nearly a year ago when Carlile ...Read more

Movie review: 'Maleficent: Mistress of Evil' undermines important themes with goofy camp

It seems that Angelina Jolie's current pet cause is rehabilitating the image of notorious "Sleeping Beauty" villain and evil fairy Maleficent. The 2014 live-action stand-alone film positioned the curse-bearing mistress of evil as a misunderstood and abused guardian of the natural world and all the magic it contains. There's certainly something ...Read more

Movie review: Anti-Nazi satire 'Jojo Rabbit' has plenty of bark, but no bite

In Taika Waititi's new film, "Jojo Rabbit," billed as an "anti-hate satire," the Maori-Jewish New Zealand filmmaker himself plays Adolf Hitler. But that seems to both the beginning and the end of the joke. This Hitler is an imaginary friend to little Hitler Youth member Jojo (Roman Griffin Davis), and Waititi's silly, irreverent performance ...Read more

Michelle Pfeiffer key to 'Maleficent' sequel for director

LOS ANGELES -- Making a movie is a daunting task for a director. Everything from where to put a comma in the script to the color of a mythical creature's hair falls under the decisions they must make in the gamble that all the pieces come together to make the work successful.

Director Joachim Rønning ("Marco Polo") faced all the regular ...Read more

Lies, spies and NBC: Ronan Farrow on the stunning revelations in 'Catch and Kill'

Ronan Farrow was not surprised that even before the official publication date of his bombshell-dropping book "Catch and Kill: Lies, Spies, and a Conspiracy to Protect Predators" people were calling him a liar.

"In most of the stories I report on, there are similar kind of smear campaigns that spin up," he said recently. "There's an effort to ...Read more