Entertainment

Film Review: Hands of Stone

By Dwight Brown (NNPA Newswire Film Critic) “Every boxer is someone’s hero.” It’s a saying that’s been hard to attach to Roberto Durán. Most people assume that he is just an infamous Panamanian boxer who left a match against Sugar Ray Leonard, uttering the words, […read more]

Entertainment

Movie Review: Suicide Squad

By Dwight Brown NNPA News Wire Film Critic “Deadpool” may have raised the bar far too high for the comic-book-turned-film genre. It was fresh, innovative, irreverent, demented, unpredictable, visually alluring, well-acted, written, directed and produced. “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” flew in its shadow. […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: Miss Sharon Jones!

By Dwight Brown (NNPA News Wire Film Critic) Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings is a Grammy-nominated R&B band from Brooklyn. Their groove is funky like James Brown’s. Jones’ gyrations are as wild and ferocious as Tina Tuner’s. The group’s soul shakes and their lead singer’s […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: Jason Bourne

By Dwight Brown (NNPA News Wire Film Critic) There’s something missing in actor Matt Damon and director/writer Paul Greengrass’s return to the Bourne action/spy/thriller franchise. It’s hard to put your finger on it. But the brutal fight scenes, painstakingly coordinated cloak-and-dagger sequences and elaborate car […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: Free State of Jones

By Dwight Brown (NNPA News Wire Film Critic) “You can not own a child of God,” proclaims a slave named Moses (Mahershala Ali, HBO’s “Treme”). “We don’t got no country on either side. We’re our own country,” says Confederate Army deserter Newton “Newt” Knight (Matthew […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: Keanu

By Dwight Brown (NNPA News Wire Film Critic) They’re 50 percent Black, 50 percent White. 100 percent Nerd. Go figure. Left to their own devices and dull lives, not a lot of excitement comes their way. Until that fateful day when a lost and forlorn […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: Born to Be Blue

By Dwight Brown (NNPA News Wire Film Critic) “I did it my way…” No, Ethan Hawke doesn’t sing those lyrics in this faux bio/film about jazz great Chet Baker. But judging by his thoroughly convincing performance and writer/director Robert Budreau’s impressionistic screenplay and artsy direction, […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: London Has Fallen

By Dwight Brown NNPA News Wire Film Critic A good action-thriller movie keeps you tense, engaged and excited. A great action-thriller does all that and you still feel anxious long after you’ve left the theater. This sequel to the $161M-grossing Olympus Has Fallen, about a […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: Eddie The Eagle

By Dwight Brown NNPA News Wire Film Critic Somewhere in between the football tearjerker “Rudy” and the offbeat cult-classic Jamaican bobsled team bio “Cool Runnings,” there is room for this very disarming, true-life tale of a bumbling British ski jumper, Michael “Eddie” Edwards, who made […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: Race

By Dwight Brown, NNPA News Wire Film Critic “On the track, there is no Black and White, just fast and slow. For those 10 seconds you are free,” says Jesse Owens (Stephan James) in this very moving and inspiring bio/sports movie that captures the essence of […read more]

Entertainment

Film Review: Triple 9

By Dwight Brown NNPA News Wire Film Critic Honor among thieves? Not with this bunch. These guys are playing a mean duplicitous game, and as they do, you can’t guess who will survive. That’s the mark of a solid, tense cop/crime/thriller. A good one will […read more]

Entertainment

Movie Review: Deadpool

By Dwight Brown NNPA News Wire Film Critic “I’m super, but I’m not a superhero,” clarifies Deadpool, a petulant mutate. Yes, he has mighty powers, but no pretense about being a nice guy. If there is ever an Avengers Hall of Fame, he’ll never get […read more]

Entertainment

The Best Films of 2015

By Dwight Brown NNPA News Wire Film Critic Movies have become a great comfort in what has been a tumultuous year. They’ve entertained us. Made us laugh, feel courageous, scared, romantic and educated us too. It’s a perfect time to reflect on the films, performances […read more]

Entertainment

Movie Review: Creed

By Dwight Brown NNPA News Wire Film Critic “Why would you pick a fighter’s life if you didn’t have to,” asks the old, retired ex-boxer Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone). He would know. The life, it ain’t easy. Yet as he stares into the eyes of […read more]

Entertainment

Movie Review: Trumbo

By Dwight Brown NNPA News Wire Film Critic The 1940s and ‘50s weren’t kind to people whose politics flirted with the far left, especially those in the Hollywood artist community. Writer Dalton Trumbo, Oscar-nominated for “Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo,” got caught up in the “Better […read more]

Entertainment

Music, movement are new realms for classic ‘Fantasia’ [USA Today]

[USA Today] The creators of the Rock Band and Dance Centralvideo games are teaming up with Disney for a game that inserts you into the world of Fantasia. As apprentice to sorcerer Yen Sid, Mickey Mouse experimented with magic in the 1940 animated classic. In Fantasia: Music Evolved,Yen Sid tutors […read more]

Entertainment

Chris Brown and Karrueche Tran are dating again [UPI]

[UPI] Chris Brown has reconciled with his ex-girlfriend Karrueche Tran and they are living together at the singer’s Hollywood Hills home, TMZ reported. Tran is keeping her own apartment, but has already moved most of her clothes and other personal belongings into Brown’s house, the report said. […read more]

Entertainment

Kanye West’s ‘New Slaves’ Screening Shut Down by Houston Police [Rolling Stone]

[Rolling Stone] A screening of Kanye West’s “New Slaves” video in Houston came to an early end last night when police arrived to shut down the projection. According to the Houston Chronicle, the Houston police broke up an “upbeat, respectful crowd” who had gathered to watch the display at […read more]

Entertainment

Will Smith Raps Fresh Prince Theme Song with Son Jaden [People.com]

[People] It wasn’t Bel-Air, or even West Philadelphia, but Will Smith grabbed a microphone in London and proved he hasn’t forgotten hisFresh Prince roots. The megastar and son Jaden pleasantly shocked The Graham Norton Show audience Friday when they stood up during their appearance to promote After Earth and rapped the theme […read more]

Op-Ed

Endless Entertainment Options

By Cheryl Pearson-McNeil NNPA Columnist   Remember back-in-the-day when you used to poke your mouth out, bug your parents (or whatever adult was in charge) about being bored?  Well, today’s kids can’t use that tired, old excuse. Neither can we, as grown folks, for that […read more]

Entertainment

Brady to Guest Judge ‘So You Think You Can Dance’

by Kimberly Roberts Special to the NNPA from The Philadelphia Tribune Versatile entertainer Wayne Brady, winner of both Daytime and Primetime Emmy Awards, will be among the celebrated guest judges when “So You Think You Can Dance,” (SYTYCD) returns to Fox for its tenth season […read more]

Entertainment

The One: Central Park Five’s Korey Wise

by Mea Ashley Special to the NNPA from The Washington Informer Korey Wise sits smirking through a one-man play, saying “hmph!” and “ummm” now and then. Youth groups, activists, and college students have packed the auditorium at the National Black Theatre in Harlem. Wise will […read more]

Entertainment

Cee Lo Green announces plans for three albums [LA Times]

[LA Times] Who needs sleep when you’re Cee Lo Green? Fresh off a recently wrapped Las Vegas residency, the multi-hyphenate performer announced plans for a new album — three of them, actually. Green revealed in an interview with Billboard that the highly anticipated return of his crew Goodie […read more]

Entertainment

Michael Jackson lawyer calls new sex abuse claim ‘outrageous’ [Reuters]

[Reuters] The attorney for Michael Jackson’s estate on Wednesday described as “outrageous and pathetic” a fresh claim of child molestation against the dead pop star, made by one of his close friends. Choreographer Wade Robson, who testified in defense of the “Thriller” singer in a […read more]

Entertainment

‘The Butler’ Trailer: Oprah Winfrey and Forest Whitaker Star in Lee Daniels Flick [HNGN]

[HNGN] Producer Lee Daniels is back with another film sure to rack up Oscar nominations. Daniels, best known for “Precious” and “The Paper Boy” has produced another movie “The Butler.” The movie is adapted from a 2008 Washington Post article by Wil Haygood. It’s based on the […read more]

Entertainment

Kerry Washington Lands First Fashion Cover [GLAM]

Olivia Pope has finally made it! Scandal star Kerry Washington has finally landed her first fashion cover for Elle’s June 2013 issue. Though the star has been a regular on Ebonyand Essence (covering the March 2013 and March 2012 issues, respectively), she has only been featured inside the pages of mainstream magazines like InStyle. […read more]

Entertainment

Michael Jackson had skin disease at time of death [LA Times]

Personal details about Michael Jackson were revealed Monday during his family’s lawsuit against entertainment giant AEG. Christopher Rogers, the Los Angeles County deputy medical examiner, testified Monday that the 5-foot-9 Jackson weighed only 136 pounds at the time of his death and that X-rays showed he suffered from arthritis in […read more]

Entertainment

Roger Ebert Takes ‘leave of presence’ to Deal with Recurrence of Cancer [Guardian]

[Guardian] Veteran movie critic Roger Ebert has announced that he is scaling back his workload to deal with a recurrence of cancer. Ebert, 70, wrote on his Chicago Sun-Times blog that he would be taking a “leave of presence” to focus on his health and an assortment of personal work […read more]

Entertainment

Wrongful Death Trial to Revisit Michael Jackson’s Checkered Life [Reuters]

[Reuters] – Jury selection began on Tuesday in a Los Angeles civil trial that will revisit the checkered life and sudden death of superstar Michael Jackson before a planned comeback that he had hoped would revive his tattered personal and musical reputation. Jackson’s elderly mother […read more]

Entertainment

[TMZ] Rapper Too $hort Arrested for DUI

[TMZ] Rapper Too Short has just been arrested for DUI … after allegedly attempting to run from police, TMZ has learned. Law enforcement sources tell TMZ,  Short — real name Todd Anthony Shaw — was pulled over in L.A. a couple hours ago for some traffic violation … and […read more]

Entertainment

Ray Chew now musical director of ‘Idol’ [Philly Tribune]

Composer and producer Ray Chew, also an accomplished keyboardist, is in his third season as musical director of “American Idol.” — SUBMITTED PHOTO Having put his musical stamp on such major productions the 2008 Democratic National Convention, President Obama’s Inaugural Neighborhood Ball, the Grammy Awards […read more]