Entertainment

Review: ‘Transformers’ gets a great savior in ‘Bumblebee’

The “Transformers” movie universe has lately been leaky and rusted out. It’s become shorthand for bad blockbuster moviemaking — male-driven, mindless spectaculars with sophomoric humor. How can it be saved? Just hand the keys over to some talented women. “Bumblebee,” the sixth ...

‘Spider-Verse’ swings to the top; ‘Mortal Engines’ tanks

LOS ANGELES — “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” swung to the top of the domestic box office in its first weekend in theaters, proving that there is widespread audience interest in big screen animated versions of Marvel’s marquee superheroes. The film led a host of newcomers that ...

2018 Breakthrough: Hannah Gadsby may change stand-up game

LOS ANGELES — Hannah Gadsby says she knows it’s meant as a compliment to be chosen as one of the year’s Breakthrough Entertainers by The Associated Press. But, as with many things, the Australian stand-up comic and actress sees the honor from a variety of perspectives. “Like, what ...

With blockbuster effects, Peter Jackson brings WWI to life

NEW YORK — Peter Jackson has used digital wizardry to conjure J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle Earth and King Kong’s 1930s New York, but he has now — in perhaps his most acclaimed film — employed all his technical powers to bring to life the Western Front of the first World War. Jackson’s ...

Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, Nicks join Rock Hall of Fame

NEW YORK — Janet Jackson joins her brother Michael and the Jackson 5 as members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, earning induction on Thursday along with Stevie Nicks and the top fan vote-getter, Def Leppard. Radiohead, the Cure, Roxy Music and the Zombies will also be ushered in next ...

Review: In ‘The Mule,’ Clint reflects on a life on the road

the associated press Both tender apologia and vigorous justification, Clint Eastwood’s “The Mule” is a deeply, fascinatingly personal meditation from the 88-year-old director who, like his aged drug mule protagonist, has spent a long time on the road. “The Mule” is the ...

Film Review: Jason Momoa swims but ‘Aquaman’ sinks

Superheroes who travel by sea horse never get any respect. Since Paul Norris and Mort Weisinger first dreamed him up in 1941, Aquaman’s fate has largely been as the Rodney Dangerfield of DC Comics — a regular punchline for his not-so-potent powers. Sure, he can talk underwater and ...

Shameik Moore slings webs as 1st biracial Spider-Man in film

LOS ANGELES — A journal entry penned when Shameik Moore was teenager laid out one of his dreams — to play Spider-Man on the big screen. That dream is now partially realized with Moore serving as the voice of the web-slinger in the new animated film, “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse ...

Cardi B, Pharrell, Kanye draw crowds during Art Basel Miami

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. — Royalty, Real Housewives and the fathers of two Kardashian babies were among the celebs that fanned out across Miami for a week of glamorous parties toasting the world’s best artists during Art Basel. Less than 24 hours after announcing she was splitting from her ...

After a long, bumpy journey, ‘Mowgli’ settles in at Netflix

LOS ANGELES — To say Andy Serkis has been through the wringer with his adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s “The Jungle Book” is a bit of an understatement. It was always going to be an ambitious project for a first time director — dark, intense and more in the spirit of Kipling’s ...

After a year full of tears, Ariana Grande comes out on top

NEW YORK — Ariana Grande capped off a successful year as a pop star — but a trying one as a maturing young woman — at the 13th annual Billboard Women in Music event, where she was named Woman of the Year. The 25-year-old singer was teary-eyed at times during her acceptance speech as she ...

Dick Cheney biopic ‘Vice’ tops Golden Globes nominations

NEW YORK — Adam McKay’s Dick Cheney biopic “Vice” staged an awards-season coup Thursday, landing a leading six nominations from the 76th annual Golden Globe Awards to narrowly edge more expected favorites like Bradley Cooper’s tear-jerking revival “A Star Is Born,” the interracial ...

Julia Roberts finds life (and her roles) get better with age

NEW YORK — Julia Roberts is sitting on a couch in a Soho hotel when Lucas Hedges bursts in and begins frantically searching for his phone, sending pillows flying. “This is what I say to Finn,” Roberts says, referencing one of her three children as she instructs her 21-year-old co-star. ...

Victoria’s Secret show tumbles to lowest ratings

NEW YORK — As a television event, the Victoria’s Secret fashion show appears headed for the remainder bin. The show has been buffeted by bad publicity, bad reviews and now bad numbers. Shown Sunday on ABC after several years on CBS, its audience of 3.27 million viewers was the smallest ...

Rockers Hootie & the Blowfish return with new album, tour

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Twenty-five years after “Cracked Rear View” launched their careers, Grammy-winning rock band Hootie & the Blowfish will release a new album and launch an official tour next year after a decade-long break. The Southern pop-rockers, featuring lead singer Darius ...

Community hero steps in for Kid Rock to lead holiday parade

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A man who helped stop a Waffle House shooter stepped into the role as grand marshal for the Nashville Christmas Parade as a last-minute replacement Saturday for Kid Rock, who got the boot for his profane comments on live TV. James Shaw Jr. hopped into a horse-drawn ...

Africans played key, often unheralded, role in World War I

JOHANNESBURG — Amid the fanfare marking the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, little has been said about crucial participants in the conflict: Africans. More than 1 million African soldiers, laborers and porters were vital actors in the war in Europe and especially in battles on ...

The growing pains of being Alessia Cara

NEW YORK — One day Alessia Cara got a request from a friend: Write a song about my breakup. “He was like, ‘Listen, I’m not a songwriter, I’m not good at writing. Could you maybe one day ... write a song about somebody falling out of love with you?’” The concept had been in the ...

‘Avengers’ director says Evans’ Cap days may not be over

LOS ANGELES — Chris Evans suggested his run as Captain America is done. The filmmakers currently controlling the Avengers’ fates say he shouldn’t shelve the shield just yet. Evans tweeted last month that he had wrapped his shooting on the fourth “Avengers” movie, calling it an ...

Star Trek’s interracial kiss 50 years ago heralded change

WASHINGTON — It was the kiss heard around the galaxy. Fifty years ago — and only one year after the U.S. Supreme Court declared interracial marriage was legal — two of science fiction’s most enduring characters, Captain James T. Kirk and Lieutenant Nyota Uhura, kissed each other on ...