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Thriller in a thriller

Nocturnal Animals is beautiful, but brittle

You must forgive the marketers over at Focus Features for their attempt to present Tom Ford's drama as a dark action pic, the teaser ads suggesting the story revolves around poor Jake Gyllenhaal getting roughed up, losing his family, and taking revenge on the thugs who did it. For those of you excited at the prospect of a good, bloody revenge thriller, you probably want to sit back down and get a few things straight. Continue reading...

Home Movies

The Secret Life of Pets, directed by Chris Renaud and Yarrow Cheney Continue reading...

Miss Sloane

Presciently, with our political system devolving further and further into win-at-all-costs amoral chaos, and our politicians thoroughly bought and paid for by giant corporate America, John Madden has seen fit to make a film about one of the more contentious figures on Capitol Hill: The modern lobbyist. Working the system for their clients, the lobbying arm of the political industry has more to do with American governance than anybody -- save their firms -- should feel comfortable with, but because the nature of their work is largely privatized and done outside the public sector, little is revealed to the unwitting public about their influence. Continue reading...

Previews

The Bounce Back PG-13 A relationship expert (Shemar Moore) on a book tour promoting his best-seller gets called out as a fraud by a talk-show therapist, then finds his life is upended when, in spite of himself, he falls in love with her and is forced to face painful truths about a past relationship. With Nadine Velazquez, Sheryl Underwood, Kali Hawk, Robinne Lee; directed by Youssef Delara. (1 hour, 44 minutes) Continue reading...

COMING ATTRACTIONS

Collateral Beauty, PG-13 Will Smith plays a New York advertising executive who, after suffering a great tragedy, retreats from life; when his letters to Love, Time and Death start returning unexpected personal responses, he begins to understand how even the deepest loss can reveal moments of meaning and beauty. With Edward Norton, Keira Knightley, Michael Pena, Naomie Harris, Jacob Latimore, Kate Winslet, Helen Mirren; directed by David Frankel. Dec. 16 Continue reading...

Serial Killer haunts 30 years after debut

I once saw Henry Lee Lucas eating in one of those bargain chain steakhouses. Continue reading...

Moana, Beasts retain top spots

LOS ANGELES -- Following a massive box-office performance over the Thanksgiving holiday, Disney's Moana and Warner Bros.' Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them continued to be the top performers. Continue reading...

Office Christmas Party

Most office Christmas parties don't merit a cinematic treatment because they are more of an obligation than cause of holiday cheer. Those who still have employers willing to spend money on decorations and libations are often peeking at their watches more than listening to the same dull pep talks they hear the rest of the year. Continue reading...

Archives founder preserved Disney legacy

Dave Smith couldn't believe his luck. He was visiting Disneyland with his family about a year after its opening and spied Walt Disney strolling down the park's Main Street. Continue reading...

Super Quiz: Who's in charge?

1. Aristocracy Continue reading...

Helpful Hints

DEAR HELOISE: I am retired and a senior citizen. To keep my mind active, I created a blog featuring my family. It was so much fun getting together all of the funny stories, etc. Then I created a second one, and now I am on my third. It's a great hobby and a wonderful way to keep the family connected. Continue reading...

HOROSCOPES BY HOLIDAY

Happy birthday. You’ll do your best work when the pressure is on; you could even earn an award for it. Your dealings with a foreigner could inspire you to travel. March, April and October are your prime months for financial opportunity. Continue reading...

On Christianity

DEAR REV. GRAHAM: Does prayer really change anything? I've wondered about this, because if God really wants to do something, He'll go ahead and do it anyway, won't He? He's not going to wait until I get around to praying about it. Continue reading...

NW Previews

The Bounce Back PG-13 A relationship expert (Shemar Moore) on a book tour promoting his best-seller gets called out as a fraud by a talk-show therapist, then finds his life is upended when, in spite of himself, he falls in love with her and is forced to face painful truths about a past relationship. With Nadine Velazquez, Sheryl Underwood, Kali Hawk, Robinne Lee; directed by Youssef Delara. (1 hour, 44 minutes) Continue reading...

NW COMING ATTRACTIONS

Collateral Beauty, PG-13 Will Smith plays a New York advertising executive who, after suffering a great tragedy, retreats from life; when his letters to Love, Time and Death start returning unexpected personal responses, he begins to understand how even the deepest loss can reveal moments of meaning and beauty. With Edward Norton, Keira Knightley, Michael Pena, Naomie Harris, Jacob Latimore, Kate Winslet, Helen Mirren; directed by David Frankel. Dec. 16 Continue reading...

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