Saturday, February 25, 2017


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The producers and filmmakers of "The Hunger Games" were smart to cast Jennifer Lawrence as the protagonist Katniss Everdeen.

Prior to the first installment, "Hunger Games" (2012), Lawrence distinguished herself with a break-out actress Oscar-nominated performance in "Winter's Bone" (2010).

Lawrence received an actress Oscar for "Silver Linings Playbook" (2012), was a supporting actress Oscar-nominee for "American Hustle" (2013) and has dazzled as Raven-Mystique in "X-Men" (2011, 2014).

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

"The Theory Of Everything" has everything going for it: amazing story, fine acting and superb filmmaking.

If that's not enough for Oscar consideration, the film also tugs at the heartstrings. "The Theory Of Everything" represents a triumph of the spirit, of mind over matter and, yes, of faith versus fate.

Monday, December 1, 2014

"Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)" is brutal.

"Birdman" transcends realism.

"Birdman" inaugurates a new genre of cinema: Brutalism.

In "Birdman," Riggan (Michael Keaton) is a former superhero blockbuster movie star, the Birdman of the movie's title, trying to revive his career with a dose of acting reality.

What better way than to direct and star in a stage adaptation of the Raymond Carver short story collection, "What We Talk About When We Talk About Love" (first published in 1981).

Monday, November 24, 2014
Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP Niall Horan, from left, Liam Payne, Zayn Malik, Louis Tomlinson and Harry Styles, of One Direction, pose in the press room with the awards for artist of the year, favorite pop/rock album for "Midnight Memories" and pop/rock band, duo or group at the 42nd annual American Music Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on Sunday in Los Angeles.

American girls love British boys: One Direction won artist of the year at the American Music Awards, taking home three honors and was the night's big winner next to Katy Perry, who didn't attend the show.

One Direction also won favorite band, duo or group pop/rock and favorite album pop/rock for "Midnight Memories" at the fan-voted show on Sunday night.

"This has been a real perfect day ... America feels like a second home to us," Liam Payne said onstage with his band mates when they won the night's first award. The group released its new album, "Four," last week.

Saturday, November 22, 2014
Dark Star Orchestra

Dark Star Orchestra, the band which recreates the sounds of the Grateful Dead by playing historic set lists, is returning to Penn's Peak in Jim Thorpe.

The concert will be held at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 26. Tickets are $24 in advance and $29 at the door.

For over 17 years as of this tour, Dark Star Orchestra has embodied the Grateful Dead's live experience for fans both old and too young to have ever seen their own Grateful Dead show.

Friday, November 21, 2014
Special to the Times News Free Range Folk will perform at the Mauch Chunk Opera Houseon Wednesday.

The Mauch Chunk Opera House at 14 W. Broadway in Jim Thorpe presents the Third Annual Harvest Jam with Free Range Folk on Thanksgiving Eve.

Enjoy the bounty of the season with Free Range Folks and friends during this evening of good music and local organic food prepared by the 14 Acre Farm. Dance with friends to the music and get yourself in the mood to give thanks the following day.

Friday, November 21, 2014
Special to the Times News The Sultans of String will perform at the Mauch Chunk Opera House on Saturday.

Sultans of String bandleader and violinist Chris McKhool acknowledges that a lot of bands like the Sultans mix different styles from around the world. But the Toronto-based band a trio from the group performing Saturday in Jim Thorpe at the Mauch Chunk Opera House plays their music in one voice.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

"Interstellar" goes to infinity and beyond.

While we don't have Buzz Lightyear of "Toy Story" fame, Sandra Bullock and George Clooney of "Gravity" (2013) or the crew of "Apollo 13" (1995), we do have the mystery and awe of "2001: A Space Odyssey" (1968) and its sequel "2010" (1984).

In a word, we have: Wormhole.

It's a concept that even Neil deGrasse Tyson, American astrophysicist, author and director of the Hayden Planetarium, New York City, has been at pains to explain in analyzing "Interstellar."

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
LINDA KOEHLER/TIMES NEWS Pleasant Valley High School will present the classic comedy "Cheaper By the Dozen" this weekend. Some of the main characters include, from left: mother Lillian Gilbreth (Regan Welkey); father Frank Gilbreth (Nathaniel Rhoads); daughter Ernestine Gilbreth (Angelica Ramierz); son Frank Gilbreth Jr. (Kurt Ammermann); daughter Ann Gilbreth (Hayley Blanding); and schoolteacher Miss Brill (Amina Jones).

Pleasant Valley High School will present the classic comedy, "Cheaper by the Dozen" Friday through Sunday to kick off its 2014-15 theater season.

"Cheaper by the Dozen," based on the real life story of the Gilbreth Family, is set in the 1920s and tells the story of the well-known efficiency expert Frank Gilbreth (Nathaniel Rhoads), an industrial engineer and a leader in the field of scientific management who manages his family with the same efficiency he would expect from a factory.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Steeped in Irish tradition, the Brock McGuire Band brings its repertoire to Tamaqua tonight with a concert at the Tamaqua Community Arts Center.

Fronted by Moving Cloud founding members Paul Brock and Manus McGuire, the band's tight, tenacious blend of instruments emphasizes mostly Irish music, but there is also a sprinkling of impressive arrangements of American Old Timey, Bluegrass, French-Canadian and other Celtic traditions.