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Articles by Diana Beechener

Smile, you’re on Candid Camera!

A suicide bombing reduces a bustling London market to smoldering ash, taking the lives of 120 people. When the police arrest the one surviving member of the terrorist cell responsible, the government heralds it as a triumph of justice. But as the trial begins, justice becomes a tricky subject.
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Five men save humanity one pint at a time

Gary King (Simon Pegg: Star Trek) fancied himself a god in high school. He and his band of followers debauched their way across their small town. A hard drinker, high and a hit with the ladies, Gary’s biggest regret is that he and his lackeys never finished the fabled Golden Mile, a one-mile pub crawl with 12 pints at 12 local bars.
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Divergent paths through the Civil Rights era

As a young boy in 1920s Georgia, Cecil Gaines (Forest Whitaker: The Last Stand) learned how the world worked for black people. On a whim, their white land-owner not only rapes Cecil’s mother but also shoots his father, who is buried by his fellow black sharecroppers in a shallow grave.
    In compensation, Cecil is invited in as a house servant. The work is
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Beautiful execution of a half-baked idea

In the year 2154, the world is in a sorry state. Overpopulated, polluted and desperately poor, the 99 percent toil in sweatshops or resort to crime. Brutal robots keep the people in their place. The lucky one percent lives in Elysium, a space station floating above the ruined planet, where people are healthy, homes gorgeous and creature comforts abundant. Understandably, everyone on Earth wants to get to Elysium....

Someone please save Shamu

Millions of tourists flock to SeaWorld each year to enjoy marine exhibits, lay hands on happily squealing dolphins and cheer as massive Orcas perform aquatic acrobatics at their famed Shamu shows. Orcas and their trainers seem a perfect team, showing the beautiful relationships that humans can cultivate with animals.
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Being young and black in America is still dangerous

On New Year’s Eve, 2009, Oscar Grant (Michael B. Jordan: Chronicle) decided to take the BART to San Francisco to see fireworks and party with friends. By 9:15am the next morning, the 22-year-old was dead.
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Get rid of all your dolls, now!

Lorraine and Ed Warren (Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson) don’t scare easily. Ed is the only ordained demonologist who’s not a Catholic priest. Lorraine is a powerful clairvoyant who helps her husband investigate reported hauntings around the world.
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Silly plotting and ridiculous dialog don’t dampen the fun of this bombastic action flick

In the near future, a rift opens up in the Pacific Ocean. Instead of a tsunami, the rift creates an inter-dimensional portal that allows building-sized monsters to enter our world. The Kaiju —the Japanese word for strange creature — aren’t visiting our planet to check out the tourist attractions. They’re here to destroy.
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Gru lets his minions do the comedy work in this silly sequel

Retired super villain Gru (voiced by Steve Carell: The Office) is a great dad to his three adopted daughters. But he isn’t very good at life on the side of right.
    Plus he has to figure out what to do with his evil scientist partner and scores of odd yellow minions.
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A gender-bending twist gives raunchy life to a buddy-cop comedy

Special agent Sarah Ashburn (Sandra Bullock: Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close) is good at her job. She’s a wealth of information, always on top of her investigations and can find stashed drugs faster than the K-9 unit. Unfortunately, what Ashburn boasts in brains she lacks in people skills. Half of the FBI wants her to fail; the other half avoids her.
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