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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 Sept. 19, 2013/ 15 Tishrei, 5774

The biggest winners of summer

By Barry Koltnow




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) Shirley MacLaine may have a point.

The Oscar-winning actress once lectured me sternly while I sat in stunned silence in the living room of her Malibu home. I don't remember the line of questioning that irked her so much, but she chided me at length about my negativity.

I want to prove to the actress that I am a partially changed man. I can go with the positive flow — it just takes a week longer than coming up with a bunch of losers.

This summer movie season was unlike any other summer movie season. Never before have so many studios spent so much money to attract so few ticket buyers.

But it wasn't all bad. Are you listening, Shirley? There was plenty to cheer about this summer, particularly if you didn't waste money on "The Hangover Part III." It was a delightful summer if you didn't follow Ryan Reynolds into a movie theater or ride the trail with Johnny Depp's Tonto or download Ashton Kutcher's biopic on Apple founder Steve Jobs.

Come on, people. Stop being so negative. Let's celebrate the winners of summer.

1. Michael B. Jordan and "Fruitvale Station" — The summer's most talked-about and thought-provoking film almost didn't make it to most theaters. The studio behind this real-life story of the last day in the life of 22-year-old Oscar Grant III, who was shot to death by a transit cop on a Bay Area train platform, planned to release the film in urban areas only. But the movie and its star (Jordan) got so much Academy Awards buzz, and made so much money, that it was expanded into suburban areas.

2. "The Conjuring" — One of the scariest movies in years was made on a paltry $20 million budget (paltry by Hollywood standards) and has collected more than $130 million at the box office, which is huge for horror movies that do not have a chainsaw in them.

3. Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy — There seems to be this media-fueled belief that the female cop buddy movie "The Heat" didn't do well, but the reality is that it has almost quadrupled its $43 million price tag. Perhaps the Hollywood boys club is spreading rumors?

4. "Now You See Me" — Magic movies never make money. Nobody likes magic movies. Why bother making a magic movie? But this movie about a gang of young illusionists who steal from the rich crossed the magical $100 million mark at the office, and the doubts about magic movies simply disappeared.


5. Kevin Hart — The stand-up comic spent his own money (rumored to be in the $3 million neighborhood) to film a sold-out performance at Madison Square Garden from his 2012 "Let Me Explain" concert tour. The movie has made $32 million. You do the math. No, let Kevin's accountant to the math.

6. "The Purge" — This silly movie was budgeted at $3 million, and has made $64 million. How did your retirement fund do this summer?

7. Justin Lin — Orange County's pride and joy directed the sixth "Fast & Furious" movie, which made enough money to put a muscle car in every garage.

8. Oprah — The talk-show queen put her reputation on the line with a promotional blitzkrieg surrounding her film "Lee Daniels' The Butler." It turns out that the butler wasn't the only one who did it.

9. Robert Downey Jr. — The "Iron Man" franchise is a license for this actor to print money. The third one has made more than $400 million in this country alone.

10. Adam Sandler — Nobody wanted Sandler to appear on last week's list of summer losers more than I, but the stupid sequel to the stupid "Grown Ups" movie actually made some serious cash. Of course, someone needs to explain to me how the sequel could have cost $80 million to make. I assume Sandler paid himself and his buddies way too much money to inflate the budget. They certainly didn't spend it at Industrial Light & Magic. Regardless, the movie made almost $130 million, so I have no choice but to tip my hat to the enduring popularity of Sandler's juvenile brand of humor. My greatest regret is that he dragged Salma Hayak's reputation down with him. She played his wife for what I can only assume was a great deal of money.

———

HONORABLE MENTION:

10a. "We're the Millers" — What could be easier than to predict failure for a movie comedy starring Jason Sudeikis and Jennifer Aniston? He's another in a long line of faceless "Saturday Night Live" alums who disappear in the glare of Hollywood, and she's got the worst track record in film. Well, "We're the Millers" has been an unexpected success, proving that the great screenwriter William Goldman was right when he declared that "Nobody knows anything." Apparently, I know less than most.

.

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:

What teen movie of today will be remembered in 40 years?
Dolls can be very scary
The biggest movie surprises of the summer
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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