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  • Movie Review: Get Out

    Feb. 27, 2017. The film stars Daniel Kaluuya as Chris, the black boyfriend of white Rose (Allison Williams). She takes him to upstate New York to meet her upper-crust white parents (Bradley Whitford and Catherine Keener). The family throws a party where almost all of the guests are white snobs. None of them are quite on-the-nose “racists,” but they commit some unintentional faux pas by using slang like “my man” and turning the conversation a little too quickly to Barack Obama and Tiger Woods. .By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: Fifty Shades Darker

    Feb. 20, 2017. The “Fifty Shades” franchise is commercially successful but critically despised. I’ve heard all manner of nasty things said about the books, and 2015’s “Fifty Shades of Grey” tied for Worst Picture at the Razzies. “Fifty Shades Darker” is no redeemer, I assure you. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say the series likes the abuse it takes from people with good taste.By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: The LEGO Batman Movie

    Feb. 13, 2017. Last year, when I saw “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice,” the biggest audience reaction came before the movie when we got the teaser trailer for “The LEGO Batman Movie.” It was already pretty well-known that the movie at hand was lousy, and the buzz for “Suicide Squad” was starting to turn bleak. We all wanted to see how the Caped Crusader was going to rebound, and it looked like we had our answer. The trick wasn’t to team him up with Superman, Wonder Woman, The Joker, or Harley Quinn. Of course! The trick was to team him up with Legos again. Or so it seemed. It turns out that this movie doesn’t quite do Batman right either.By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘La La Land’ Incredibly Bouncy and Fun–Definite Oscar Winner

    La-La
    Jan. 16, 2017 I’m writing this a little over a week before the Oscar nominations are announced, and there are three movies that I can safely say are a lock for Best Picture: “Moonlight,” “Manchester by the Sea,” and “La La Land.” And of these three, “La La Land” is by far the most likely to win. Simply put, it’s the biggest spectacle. It’s the flashiest, with gimmicky goodies around every corner; goodies like bright colors and trick camera work and of course, musical numbers.

    Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone star as a couple of starry-eyed kids struggling to make it in Hollywood. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Hidden Figures’ Predictably Safe, But Very Appealing

    hiddenJan. 9, 2017 A lot of people were unhappy with my review of “Sing” a few weeks ago. Many wondered how I could have so much disdain for a movie with positive messages about perseverance and following your dreams. There are two main reasons: 1) That movie is considerably less positive with its messages about stealing and avoiding responsibility, and 2) There are plenty of better movies with messages about perseverance and following your dreams. One such movie is “Hidden Figures.”
    The film follows three African-American women who work at NASA in 1961. Katherine (Taraji P. Henson) is a mathematician and physicist. Mary (Janelle Monae) is a mathematician and engineer. Dorothy (Octavia Spencer) is a mathematician and essentially a supervisor, though she hasn’t gotten the appropriate promotion yet. The three work out of Langley, Virginia, during a tense time in the segregation era. They persevere and follow their dreams in order to help John Glenn (Glen Powell) make his legendary orbit around the Earth. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ It Feels Rushed and Underdone

    beastsNov. 21, 2016 “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” should have been a book first. Yes, I know it was, sort of. A fake “Harry Potter”-themed textbook about magical creatures came out in 2001, written by “Newt Scamander” (actually J.K. Rowling). Now we’re getting a five-part movie series about Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) and how he came to write the book, and all five movies are to be written by Rowling. Of course, the “Harry Potter” series found worldwide success as books turned into movies. With “Fantastic Beasts,” she’s skipping right to the movie stage, and the franchise is worse for it.
    The film takes place in the 1920s when British wizard Scamander visits New York City. The brilliant-but-clumsy researcher lugs around a broken suitcase that is clearly filled with animals. A few creatures escape, and he has to adventure through the city to get them back. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Doctor Strange’ One of Marvel’s Strangest Movies—The Creativity Amazing

    strange
    Nov. 7, 2016 Doctor Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) is the latest superhero to be added to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Prior to becoming a superhero, he’s a lot like Tony Stark: an arrogant genius who coasts through life on incredible talent without really pushing himself beyond his comfort zone. Strange is a surgeon who gets in a car accident and loses use of his hands. He’s lucky that’s all he loses after his car went over a steep cliff, but as a surgeon, he’s still devastated. He plunges into a downward spiral where he goes broke and turns away his caring girlfriend (Rachel McAdams).

    No doctors in the Western Hemisphere will help Strange, so he travels to Nepal to be treated by a mysterious Ancient One (Tilda Swinton). By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Inferno’ Charm to the Movie in the Wrong Place

    Oct. 31, 2016.“Inferno” is the third film to star Tom Hanks as adventure-prone symbology professor Robert Langdon. The two previous films were 2006’s “The Da Vinci Code” and 2009’s “Angels & Demons.” Like the James Bond franchise, the titles don’t follow a pattern. Unlike the James Bond franchise, I don’t see many people staying loyal to the character for fifty years. Langdon has existed in movies for ten years now, and many people who have seen “Inferno” agree that’s more than enough.. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children’ Tim Burton’s Wonderfully Freaky Visuals

    miss
    Oct. 3, 2016 Hey kids, do you love “X-Men” but were massively let down by “X-Men: Apocalypse”? Are you sick of knockoffs of “The Hunger Games” and “Twilight” and yearn for the good old days of “Harry Potter” knockoffs? Do you hate wasting eight hours of your day on pesky sleep and want to see imagery that will keep you up for weeks? “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” might be the movie for you. Then again, if you like movies that are original and coherent, this might not be the movie for you.
    American teenager Jake (Asa Butterfield) witnesses his globehopping grandfather (Terrence Stamp) suffer a bizarre death that can’t be explained by standard forensics. He thinks that answers may lie at the Welsh children’s home where his grandfather grew up. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘The Magnificent Seven’ The Characters are ‘Magnificent,’ But The Movie Is Not

    sevenSept. 26, 2016 The new version of “The Magnificent Seven” (a remake of a 1960 Western that I have not seen, itself a remake of Akira Kurosawa’s “The Seven Samurai,” which I have) is one of those movies that starts off looking award-worthy, but gradually loses steam until it’s nearly unwatchable by the end. There’s no one point where it really drops the ball, it just consistently fails to capitalize on its impressive early scenes.
    Those early scenes involve evil mining tycoon Bartholomew Brogue storming into the quaint town of Rose Creek and making everyone an offer they can’t refuse: sign over their property for a measly $20 or be wiped off the face of the Earth. He murders a few outspoken townspeople to prove his point. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Blair Witch’ Dull Movie That Proves That the Magic of the Original Can’t Be Duplicated

    blairSept. 19, 2016 For better or worse, 1999’s “The Blair Witch Project” pretty much invented the “found footage” style of filmmaking that we see so often these days, usually in horror movies. The film made $140 million on a budget of $60,000 thanks to its unprecedented style and a wily internet marketing campaign. This success led to a plethora of knockoffs, sometimes as fruitful as the “Paranormal Activity” franchise, but often as useless as, say, “As Above/So Below.” Even though it’s obviously a sequel (and not just a sequel in name only like 2000’s “Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2”), I still consider the new film “Blair Witch” to be one of those useless knockoffs.
    The film follows James (James Allen McCune), the younger brother of the female filmmaker from the original film, as he goes into the woods of Maryland to try and find out what happened to his sister all those years ago. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Sully’ Like The Man Himself, Film Needs To Be Given Credit For What It Does Right

    SullySept. 12, 2016 “Sully” tells the story of eponymous pilot Chesley Sullenberger (Tom Hanks), who on January 15 2009, after a dual engine failure in midair, landed a large passenger aircraft in the middle of the Hudson River. The landing was rough, unconventional, and controversial, but it saved the lives of all 155 passengers and crew on board. Though there were many heroes that day, including First Officer Jeffrey Skiles (Aaron Eckhart), Sully was proclaimed the biggest hero of all.
    The film officially takes place a few days after the incident, as Sully is being hailed a hero, but is also facing an investigation from an inquiry board that seems unfairly antagonistic. He’s forced to relive the events of that day several times. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: Double Feature – ‘Pete’s Dragon’ and ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’

    pete
    Sept. 5, 2016 Nothing new was able to crack the Top 5 at the weekend box office, and I’ve already reviewed first-place finisher “Don’t Breathe” and second-place “Suicide Squad”. So I’m going to take a look at the holdovers that came in third and fourth, respectively. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Don’t Breathe’ Simply Made, Tense Atmosphere – One of the Best Movies of the Year

    breatheAug. 29, 2016 “Don’t Breathe” is what I like to call an “Is That So Hard?” movie. I ask that question not of the film, but of other films. In many ways, this film is simple. 90% of it takes place in one setting. The number of cast members with more than one scene can be counted on one hand. It doesn’t do anything groundbreaking with its story or storytelling. The technical aspects, while I’m sure extremely difficult for a layman to perfect, can probably be accomplished by numerous industry professionals. In other words, this isn’t a particularly “hard” movie to make. And yet, it’s one of the best movies I’ve seen all year. Other movies surely have competent people working on them, why can’t they be as good as this one? Is that so hard?
    For plot, you’ve got three burglars breaking into the house of an unnamed blind man played by Stephen Lang. Lang is one of those great underused veteran actors whose mere casting makes the movie all the more promising because it shows the filmmakers have good judgement. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘War Dogs’ A Comedy That is Also A Straight Up Crime Story

    wawrdogsAug. 22, 2016 “War Dogs” tells the story of two guys who use underhanded tactics to achieve the American Dream, live large, and destroy themselves. It is based on a real-life incident that has not been brought to screen before, but still seems awfully familiar. The characters themselves love “Scarface” and compare their story to it at every opportunity. It also has a lot in common with those narration-heavy Scorsese mob movies like “Goodfellas” and “Casino” (the latter features Kevin Pollak, who is also in this movie). Speaking of Scorsese, it’s hard not to compare this film to “The Wolf of Wall Street” due to the subject matter and the fact that both movies star Jonah Hill. I also see a lot of recent Best Picture nominee “The Big Short” in this movie because both were directed by filmmakers known primarily for comedic work (frequent Will Ferrell collaborator Adam McKay did “The Big Short, here it’s “The Hangover’s” Todd Phillips), and both are very funny, but both go into darker, more serious, and more challenging territory than we’re used to seeing. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Jason Bourne’ The Characters Are Uninteresting, The Twists Are Typical

    jasonAug. 1, 2016 “Jason Bourne” gets off on the wrong foot by having a lame title. I guess the idea was to recover from the flop that was “The Bourne Legacy” by promising viewers that Jason Bourne would actually be involved in this one. But what it’s unofficially promising to do is break from the hot streak of the first three “Bourne” movies. Fans of the franchise expect the movies to be titled “The Bourne (something vaguely exciting)” Who cares if people like to make fun of these titles (“The Bourne Colonoscopy”), they’re essential to the way people identify the franchise.
    Matt Damon is back as Bourne, brought out of hiding after nearly a decade when his hacker friend Nicky (Julia Stiles) digs up some information about the CIA program that turned him into a super-assassin only to erase his memory later. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Star Trek Beyond’ Not a Must-See Unless You’re a Big Fan of ‘Star Trek’

    beyond July 25, 2016 The “Star Trek” franchise turns 50 this year and is celebrating with a new film. “Star Trek Beyond” is a mediocre outing that is memorable for two reasons: it says a heartfelt goodbye to the iconic character of Spock following the 2015 death of Leonard Nimoy; and it is the final “Trek” film to feature Anton Yelchin as Pavel Chekov following the 27-year-old actor’s death last month. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Ghostbusters’ A Few Laughs But Not Up To The Original Film

    ghost July 11, 2016 Our team this time played by Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones. The first three are college professors who get fired over their controversial paranormal beliefs, the latter is a subway attendant who joins them when she’s confronted with undeniable evidence that ghosts exist. The team dons an arsenal of ghost-fighting gizmos and set out to contain spirits set free by a creepy guy named Rowan (Neil Casey). Rowan is supposed to be an outcast loser, but he’s no weirder than most people you’ll see walking down the street in NYC, myself included. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘The Secret Life of Pets’ A Lot To Like, But Even More To Dislike

    tartan July 11, 2016 “The Secret Life of Pets” is an animated kids’ movie where two dogs don’t like each other, but they find themselves stranded and in danger, so they have to work together if they ever want to get home. Just like in “Toy Story.” And “Inside Out.” And “The Good Dinosaur.” And “Finding Nemo.” And “Finding Dory.” But this one is also about what non-humans do when humans aren’t around. Just like in “Toy Story.” And “The Lego Movie.” And “The Brave Little Toaster.” And “Finding Nemo.” And “Finding Dory.” Yeah, there’s not a lot of originality in this movie. But some of it is delivered well, I’ll give it that.
    The plot sees terrier Max (Louis C.K.) living a comfortable life with his owner Katie (Ellie Kemper). His world is turned upside down when she brings home a rescued beast of a dog named Duke (Eric Stonestreet).By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘The Legend of Tarzan’ The Movie Adds Nothing to the Classic Character of Tarzan

    tartan July 6, 2016 One of my biggest problems with “The Legend of Tarzan” is that it plays like a sequel to a movie that was never made. Don’t get me wrong, I’m aware that we’ve had plenty of Tarzan movies before and that many of them cover his origin. But we’ve never had a Tarzan movie in this continuity before, a Tarzan movie with Alexander Skarsgard as the ape-man and Margot Robbie as his beloved Jane. This movie takes place after the couple has been married for a few years, after Tarzan has left the jungle to settle down as a British aristocrat, and after he has begun to let his roots slip away from him. I would be much more inclined to buy this movie as the kickstart to a franchise if it started with an impressionable Tarzan rather than a rusty Tarzan.By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Independence Day: Resurgence’ This Sequel Should Never Have Been Made

    day2 June 27, 2016 A sequel to the 1996 alien invasion flick “Independence Day” has been batted around for years. It certainly made sense, the original climbed to #6 at the all-time domestic box office during its release. All that was needed for a sequel was a decent script and for Will Smith to agree to step back into the role of Captain Steven Hiller. Who am I kidding? “Independence Day: Resurgence” would have settled for a flimsy script as long as it got Will Smith. It ended up settling for a flimsy script and no Will Smith. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Finding Dory’ It Doesn’t Take Long to See That the Film is a Success on Every Level

    dory June 20, 2016 Pixar has an excellent track record when it comes to sequels, but for a minute there it looked like “Finding Dory” wasn’t going to work. The aquatic adventure “Finding Nemo” came out all the way back in 2003; kids who grew up with it aren’t kids anymore. Maybe they had … forgotten about it? Aside from that, blue tang Dory (Ellen DeGeneres) made a good sidekick in the original, but was she really up for carrying a whole film by herself? No need for worrying, it doesn’t take long to see that the film is a success on every level. You just have to look at the $9.2 million it made on Thursday night (on its way to a record $136 million weekend) to know that the film is a commercial success, and you just have to watch Dory in the first few minutes to know that it’s a creative one. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows’ The Jokes Aren’t Funny, the Action Isn’t Thrilling

    ninj June 6, 2016 Should I even bother getting mad at this movie for being garbage? The whole “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” franchise has been garbage since the 80’s. The movies and cartoons have never strived to be anything more than toy commercials, and parents hate the toys because they’re so violent. Expectations are so low that it’s virtually impossible for “Out of the Shadows” to disappoint – it can only fall in line.
    We indeed get the four Ninja Turtles: leader Leonardo, tough one Raphael, smart one Donatello, and alleged comic relief Michelangelo. They’re helped by their sewer rat mentor Splinter, human reporter friend April O’Neil, her buffoon former cameraman Vern, and new well-meaning cop Casey Jones . By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ Seen This All Before. Action and Dialogue Exceptionally Bland

    men May 30, 2016 “X-Men: Apocalypse” is a film that exists for no other reason than that it was time for another “X-Men” movie. Fans have been eager to see a new film since “Days of Future Past” was one of the biggest hits of the franchise two years ago. That film ended with the promise of the villain Apocalypse for the next movie, and we’re going to get that movie even if director Bryan Singer can’t come up with anything to make it unique or appealing.
    The film takes place in 1983, making it the third go-around for James McAvoy as Professor Charles Xavier, Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique, and Michael Fassbender as Erik “Magneto” Lehnsherr. A comment is made midway through the movie about third films in a series always being the worst. I know the comment is supposed to be a knock at the Singer-less “X-Men United,” but it is destined to go down as an unintentional prophecy about this film. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘The Angry Birds Movie’ Best Movie Based on a Video Game Ever Made

    angry May 23, 2016 As a rule, movies based on video games are always terrible. There isn’t a single one that could be considered a critical darling. “Wreck-it Ralph” doesn’t count; it technically made up its derivative main characters. “The Angry Birds Movie” tries to buck this trend by being based on game with a non-traditional format (a phone app as opposed to an arcade or console game) and by featuring some impressive animation and decent voice work. It succeeds… in a way. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Captain America: Civil War’ The Action is Decent But Typical

    civil May 9, 2016 The highlight of “Captain America: Civil War” is a six-on-six superhero-on-superhero battle. For simplicity’s sake, we’ll call the sides Team Captain America and Team Iron Man. Team Captain America consists of Captain America (Chris Evans), The Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan), Falcon (Anthony Mackie), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), and Ant-Man (Paul Rudd). Team Iron Man consists of Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), War Machine (Don Cheadle), Vision (Paul Bettany), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), and Spider-Man (Tom Holland). By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Keanu’ Enough Jokes Are Thrown Around That Occasionally One Will Land

    jkeanu May 3, 2016 For weeks, I was dying to see “Keanu.” I’m a big fan of Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele and their sketch show “Key & Peele.” My family loves those sketches where they play college football players with wacky names, and I personally am a huge fan of the sketch where they play devil-hating old ladies. And Key and Peele weren’t even the main attraction. That honor belonged to the title character, the cutest kitty cat in the whole wide world. Good news, Keanu the character lives up to the hype. “Keanu” the movie does not. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘The Jungle Book’ Admirable, But Disney Has Yet To Get It Quite Right

    jungle April 18, 2016 While Disney continues to put out new hits like “Zootopia,” it’s also working hard to update its old hits. The live-action version of “Cinderella” was one of the ten biggest movies of 2015. Even more impressive is that the new live-action version of “The Jungle Book” opened to over $100 million this past weekend. It’s a commercially impressive trend. Creatively, Disney has yet to get it quite right.
    “The Jungle Book” centers around Mowgli (Neel Sethi), a human boy raised by animals in the jungles of India after the tiger Shere Khan (Idris Elba) killed his father. A pack of wolves serves as his family, the panther Bagheera (Ben Kingsley) as his teacher. Shere Khan discovers that Mowgli is still in the jungle and vows to finish the job. Bagheera and the wolves decide that Mowgli is best sent to live with a nearby human tribe, but Mowgli doesn’t want to leave his home. He’s offered protection and tempted to stay by preying snake Kaa (Scarlett Johansson), friendly bear Baloo (Bill Murray), and monkey gang leader King Louie (Christopher Walken). But they all want something from Mowgli, like fire (King Louie), food that he can gather (Baloo), and him as food (Kaa). By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘The Boss’ Almost Everything Except the Physical Humor Falls Flat

    fat April 12, 2016 “The Boss” is a movie that features a montage of a girl being dumped on an orphanage, Melissa McCarthy break-dancing, an extended mouth-spreader gag, awkward flirting and dating, that gag you’ve seen in the trailers where McCarthy gets launched into a wall by a sofa bed, a crude term for a female fan of Benedict Cumberbatch, a Girl Scout battle royal, a female chest-slapping fight, an adult showing a child “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” a possible poisoning via puffer fish, an exaggerated take on what a burglary will look like, Peter Dinklage in a katana fight, a gross makeout session, and lots and lots of profanity. Some of these are good ideas for gags, some of them aren’t, but most of them aren’t as funny as they could be none of them are connected to each other very well. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2’ Good Choice for Date Night or Family Movie Night

    fat April 4, 2016 It’s hard to talk about “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” without talking about how little demand there is for it in 2016. True, the 2002 original made an astounding $241 million, setting a record for independent films and for movies that never had a weekend at #1 at the box office. But that was 14 years ago, and the movie wrapped up nicely with Toula (Nia Vardalos, also the writer of the film) getting married to her lover Ian (John Corbett) and having a daughter that they induct into Toula’s proud Greek family. There wasn’t much need for a sequel, and there was definitely no need for the disastrous TV series “My Big Fat Greek Life.” It looked like Vardalos was done in Hollywood, destined to go down as a one-hit wonder. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’ Overall, This Movie is a Mess

    batman March 28, 2016 “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” is the most anticipated superhero crossover movie since “The Avengers.” Actually, it might be even more anticipated than “The Avengers.” Superman and Batman have starred in big-budget blockbusters since the 70’s and 80’s, respectively (and smaller-scale movie serials and TV shows long before that), but who cared much about Iron Man or Thor before the last decade? Expectations for this movie are extremely high, as is the potential for disappointment. After all, this movie is directed by Zack Snyder, helmer of notorious Superman mark-misser “Man of Steel.” The casting of bomb-prone Ben Affleck as Batman also sent fans into an uproar. It turns out that all of that worry and pessimism was pretty much justified. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘The Divergent Series: Allegiant’ This Film Sends the Franchise Into a Nosedive

    Allegiant March 21, 2016 When we last left this world, we learned that the enclosed city of Chicago was created to find Divergents, or people who didn’t fit into any of the factions that made up the city’s society. Tris (Shailene Woodley), who was such a Divergent, learned she was the key to saving humanity, which had all but completely destroyed itself outside the city. It seemed to be time to see what was outside the walls. But this film opens with police forces shooing people back from the walls. It turns out new city leader Evelyn (Naomi Watts) isn’t much better than the villainous leader she offed in the last film. Tris, however, knows she needs to go out and make a difference, so she rounds up her friends and they escape the city. By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Watauga Voters Buck State Trend, Favor Sanders and Cruz as Presidential Nominees

    March 16, 2016. Bucking the North Carolina state trend, voters in Watauga County didn’t favor Democrat and Republican presidential candidate frontrunners Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. No, voters in Watauga County overwhelmingly favored Bernie Sanders as the Democratic nominee and Ted Cruz as the Republican nominee for president. By Jesse Wood / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ’10 Cloverfield Lane’, While Not a Sequel, is Superior to the Original ‘Cloverfield’

    zoo March 14, 2016 “10 Cloverfield Lane” has been billed as a “spiritual successor” to 2008’s “Cloverfield.” This is an infuriating term that conjures up images of either a glorified remake or an unrelated film trying to cash in on the “Cloverfield” name. To be fair, it does somewhat fall into the latter category. From that perspective, it probably brings to mind “Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2,” also a barely-related steady-cam successor to a shaky-cam original. This movie is better than “Book of Shadows,” but that’s not much of an achievement. What is an achievement is that it’s better than “Cloverfield.” By Bob Garver / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Zootopia’ Funny and Thoughtful, Film Hops Over the Bar With the Ease of a Rabbit

    zoo March 8, 2016 “Zootopia” takes place in a world very much like ours, except that it’s populated entirely by non-human mammals. They’ve been living in harmony for centuries, meaning that they’ve mostly moved past the whole “eating each other” thing. They talk like humans, they wear clothes like humans, and unfortunately they have prejudices like humans. These prejudices are based not so much on race or gender, but species.
    Take our main character, Judy Hopps. Characters insist that because she’s a rabbit she’s cute and harmless. She doesn’t look like a good fit for a police force. But she perseveres, using her speed, hearing, and even her size to her advantage. All she gets to do is write parking tickets, but she could see real action any day now. By Bob Garver / Read more…



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