Arts/Entertainment

Review: ‘The Upside’ Is A Cliche-Ridden, Exploitative Mess

It’s said that January is one of the prime months that Hollywood chooses to dump its most embarrassing films and “The Upside” doesn’t exactly disprove that notion. Few films in memory have squandered so much acting talent in such a cliche-ridden, exploitative and dishonest way. It ...

NBR

NEW YORK (AP) — While Sunday’s Golden Globes were notable for their lack of political speeches, Donald Trump couldn’t be avoided at Tuesday night’s National Board of Review Awards which, it turned out, were scheduled concurrently with the president’s nationally televised address ...

Write Now: Does Practice Make Perfect?

For whatever instrument you play, how much time do you put into practicing? In a word, practicing is essential. Practicing is essential because it allows the musician to understand his instrument on another level. Some musicians have routines when they practice and that is what helps them. ...

Ga. Man Tells Police R. Kelly’s Manager Threatened Him

STOCKBRIDGE, Ga. (AP) — A Georgia man involved with a recent documentary detailing abuse allegations against R. Kelly told police the singer’s manager threatened him. Timothy Savage told an officer on Jan. 3 that Don Russell had texted him saying it would be best for him and his family if ...

With ‘Second Act,’ Jennifer Lopez Makes Her Own Opportunity

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jennifer Lopez learned a long time ago that in the entertainment business you can’t just sit around waiting for opportunities, you have to make them for yourself. It’s the simple reason “Second Act,” her first film in three years and her long-awaited return to the ...

A Star-Making Role For Joanna Kulig In ‘Cold War’

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The name Joanna Kulig might not ring a bell for the majority of American moviegoers, but that could all change in the coming weeks with the theatrical expansion of “Cold War.” The Polish drama from “Ida” director Pawel Pawlikowski about a singer, Zula (Kulig) and a ...

Write Now: Self-Publishing May Be Avenue For Some Authors

Self-publishing is still changing the rules for authors. Self-publishing allows unknown or little-known authors to play on the same field as the well-known authors, and also breathe that rarified celebrity air. I have written previously that I have walked down the self-publishing avenue. I ...

‘Ear Hustle’

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — In California, inmates typically are granted parole by doing good deeds or showing they have been rehabilitated by becoming pastors, drug counselors or youth advocates. For Walter “Earlonne” Woods, the path to freedom was podcasting. Woods, 47, was recently ...

Royal Christmas

SANDRINGHAM, England (AP) — Queen Elizabeth II wove personal reflections into the latest edition of her annual Christmas message, saying she hoped her long life brought a measure of wisdom and noting her grandchildren’s contributions to Britain’s royal family. The 92-year-old queen, the ...

Write Now: Writing Can Be Cathartic For Some

Since I began this column some months ago, I have had several people ask me why do I write. I always answer the same way: It’s because I love to write. But I also add that I love learning about writing including grammar. After all, grammar is code behind the words. If one doesn’t ...

Christmas In A Schoolhouse

“I start looking for stocking stuffers the day after Christmas,” says Bonnie Carlson when referring to the candy and trinkets she puts in 3-foot to 4-foot long Christmas stockings for her family each year. She has a tradition of serving a very large breakfast on Christmas morning, ...

Hitting His Stride

LOS ANGELES (AP) — John Cena doesn’t believe in ego. How could he when he’s used to tens of thousands of WWE fans chanting “John Cena sucks” every time he walks out to the ring? It’s a philosophy that’s helped him survive both the demands of professional wrestling, where he was ...

Lindsey Stirling Brings Holiday Cheer In Concert

BUFFALO — It’s a season of giving and, for some entertainers, that means a special tour stop for a good cause. That’s just what violinist and dancer, Lindsey Stirling brought to the stage of Shea’s Theater, Dec. 15, performing a show in the middle of her “Wanderland” tour to benefit ...

Write Now: Books, Guides Help With Writing Routine

By now you should have good ideas you want to commit to the blank page or screen. Some people still use typewriters, and some people write out in longhand before typing. Any way you can get words to the page is half the battle. Some people I have talked with say they have ideas, but getting ...

Trailblazer Director, Marshall, Dies

NEW YORK (AP) — Penny Marshall, the trailblazing director of smash-hit big-screen comedies such as “Big” and “A League of Their Own” who first indelibly starred in the top-rated sitcom “Laverne & Shirley,” has died. She was 75. Michelle Bega, a spokeswoman for the Marshall ...

Mellencamp Releases ‘Other People’s Stuff’

By The Associated Press John Mellencamp, “Other People’s Stuff” (Republic Records) In his youth John Mellencamp was known to be cocky. That brashness carried him to the big stage, where he became a stadium-scale rocker with an adventurous spirit. He mostly fell short of the stature ...

Springsteen Broadway Show Closes, Film Drops On Netflix

NEW YORK (AP) — To director Thom Zimny, the key element in his filmed version of Bruce Springsteen’s Broadway show was in the star’s eyes. The Netflix documentary makes its first appearance on the service early in the morning of Dec. 16, hours after the singer’s 236th and last ...

Global Grosses

NEW YORK (AP) — Female-led films have consistently outperform male-led movies at the box office, according to a study initiated by Time’s Up, the organization formed by prominent women in the entertainment industry to promote gender equality. The study analyzed the 350 top-grossing films ...

Write Now: Alphabet Music Game Tests Skills

Some people may think they are experts when it comes to music trivia or naming bands or music artists. Going to a holiday party? Trying playing this game where one has to name a band or artist within each letter of the alphabet. For bands that have numbers associated with their names, ...

Oprah Winfrey Praises Toni Morrison At Manhattan Dinner Gala

NEW YORK (AP) — Oprah Winfrey was in town to praise one of her idols, Nobel laureate Toni Morrison. “It’s impossible to actually imagine the American literary landscape without a Toni Morrison,” Winfrey said Tuesday night during a dinner gala in downtown Manhattan hosted by the Center ...