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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review July 25, 2013/ 18 Menachem-Av, 5773

The biggest movie surprises of the summer

By Barry Koltnow




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) Nobody in Hollywood sets out to make a bad movie — not even Adam Sandler.

Actors don't read a script and say, "This looks pretty bad; I think I'll do it."

Directors don't show up to a set and think, "I can't wait to waste the next two years of my life and make this terrible movie."

Screenwriters don't sit in Starbucks every morning intentionally writing movie endings that will annoy moviegoers.

It just turns out that way sometimes.

Anything can happen between that morning in Starbucks and that night at the multiplex.

The script can be ruined by repeated re-writes. The casting can be wrong. The bean counters at the studio can cut the budget too much. The marketing campaign can be ill-advised. Worse yet, the filmmakers can be motivated solely by money.

There is nothing wrong with wanting to make money at the box office. This is a business, after all. It's just a bad idea to use money as a starting point.

The first half of the summer movie season is over, and it is time to see what we've learned from the successes and failures of the season. Every movie season has its share of surprises, and I have asked the noted film scholar Professor Barrywood to give us his report card on the summer movie season so far.

Professor, the column is yours ...

—GOOD SURPRISES:

"The Purge" — You probably couldn't feed the extras on the "Iron Man 3" set for $3 million, but somebody made this silly thriller starring Ethan Hawke for $3 million. Seriously, in a summer of $200 million blockbusters, how could this little movie make $63 million? This is the reason people continue to make $3 million movies.



"Now You See Me" — Everybody hates movies about magic. Nobody goes to see movies about magic. This movie made those Hollywood clichés vanish. A heist film about a gang of young illusionists who steal from the rich, it struck a chord in audiences waiting for the next blockbuster to open. Although it wasn't made on the cheap like "The Purge," the $75 million magic movie has passed the $100 million mark, and that is a true accomplishment for a summer movie that does not have superheroes, animated characters or Capt. James T. Kirk of the Starship Enterprise.

"This is the End" — Seth Rogen and his writing and directing partner Evan Goldberg must be giggling all the way to the bank. Probably on a dare, they decided to make an apocalyptic comedy starring all their friends (playing themselves) and the stupid movie has made $75 million. The reported budget was $32 million, but most of that went for beer and weed.

—BAD SURPRISES

1. "After Earth" — Will Smith is the King of Summer. Will Smith can't miss in the summer. Will Smith could make a summer movie with his son in it and people would stand in line to see it. Well, it turns out that Will Smith is human, and to his credit, he's taken his licks with a (pained) smile.

2. "The Internship" — There may have been a bit of overconfidence in the re-teaming of Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn eight years after "Wedding Crashers." The public really wasn't that excited about the pairing of these guys, and even less interested in an infomercial on Google. At last count, the movie had made $41 million (see "The Purge").

3. "The Hangover Part III" — Remember what that bald columnist said earlier about filmmakers being motivated by money? There was no reason to make this movie except for a fat payday for the studio, the filmmakers and the cast. I'll give Bradley Cooper a pass on this one. His career didn't need it, but he might have been contractually obligated to participate. He also is a loyal friend, and he would never deny his buddies a big paycheck. Still, I don't think he donated his check to charity, and I don't remember him offering refunds to people who paid to see this junk.

—JUST SURPRISES

1. "Man of Steel" — The reviews were mixed, and many critics were quick to toss Kryptonite at this reboot of everybody's favorite superhero. Guess what? The public wants to see what the public wants to see. Despite the reviews, the film already has passed the $500 million mark worldwide.

2. "Epic" — This animated film is hardly a failure (it has eclipsed its $100 million price tag), but it never connected with families like "Monsters University." Of course, "Epic" didn't have the benefit of being a sequel.

3. "World War Z" — Brad Pitt worked on this zombie film for six years, and it was pummeled by the worse negative buzz imaginable — reports of many re-writes, re-shoots and postponements. Still, people were interested in seeing it, which may go a long way toward blunting the notion floating around Hollywood that star power is dead.

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Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.



Comment on Barry Koltnow's column by clicking here.


Previously:

The Lone Ranger and Tonto vent
Imitation is the sincerest form of filmmaking
Zombie movies you should see before you re-animate
Real Google doesn’t mean real giggles
This summer features a lot of movies with surprise plot twists
Don't let this golden opportunity slip away
Blame the shark for summer-movie madness
Baby boomers still buy tickets
Biopics always have one scene too many
Sneaking into movies not as easy as in old days
Ben Affleck's life is still worth living
The black market for movie raves
The 10 worst movies of 2012
2012's most annoying celebrities
Lindsay Lohan needs to be ignored
Red Dawn' remake reflects China's box-office pull
Fall movie season ends with lessons learned
The 10 best Bond villains ever
Readers weigh in on confusing movies
10 most confusing movies of all time
Do you enjoy going out to the movies?
Sylvester Stallone, the Dalai Lama and me
Watch August movies at your own risk
Nothing new in the new Spider-Man movie
Grading the summer movies . . . so far
Readers are angry about TV network practices, too
TV networks have some explaining to do
The night Johnny Depp made me a star
Summer movies: the dark horses
Lindsay, Ashton, Kim --- are they kidding?
Readers pick their favorite baseball movies
Our 10 favorite baseball movies
The most over-hyped movies of 2012
The 10 worst best pictures ever
The greatest Oscar acceptance speech NEVER given
The worst biopics ... ever
20 celebrity questions that must be answered in 2012
The Golden Globes are meaningless
The 10 Most Annoying Celebrities of 2011
The funniest comedy teams
Fake celebrities ignite real controversy
Hollywood: Stop spoiling our movies
Mob expert reveals his favorite gangster flicks
Good riddance, Harry Potter
The coolest car movies ever made
Our favorite teacher movies
Are women funny?
Our special snarky summer movie guide
The 10 most pressing show biz questions
Readers weigh in on the royal wedding
The royal wedding: I don't get it
Readers reach verdict on lawyer column
Our favorite lawyer movies ever
Readers pick their worst Oscar winners
The 10 worst best pictures ever
25 hit-man movies to die for
The 10 greatest sidekicks ever
The 10 biggest celebrity missteps of 2010
Who's cooler than Steve McQueen? (Answer: nobody)
The best revenge movies ever
The good old days, when celebrities weren't train wrecks
Making sport of celebrities
Youth will be served? Don't give me that trash!
A celebrity answer is no answer at all
Caution: geniuses at work



© 2010, The Orange County Register; Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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