Entertainment

Why the state of the big-screen summer comedy is no laughing matter

In years past, the summertime box office could always be counted on to deliver at least one mainstream comedy smash that would break out of the pack of superhero films, action spectacles and rampaging giant-monster epics. Think: “The Hangover,” which pulled in $277 million domestically in 2009....

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  • New play addresses Trump election, rise of 'nasty nationalism'

    New play addresses Trump election, rise of 'nasty nationalism'

    Early in “Meditations on Nationalism,” a play that receives its premiere from Baltimore’s Quarry Theatre this week, the voice of then-presidential candidate Donald J. Trump will be heard bemoaning the state of the country and promising to make America great again. Moments later, a voice-over of...

  • Play about Donny Hathaway will return to Center Stage

    Play about Donny Hathaway will return to Center Stage

    "Twisted Melodies," a one-man play about the difficult life of soul artist Donny Hathaway, was such a hit with audiences last year at Baltimore Center Stage that its run was extended. If you missed it, or want to experience it again, another chance is coming. The play, written and superbly performed...

  • BSO's second New Music Festival to offer another colorful mix of works by living composers

    BSO's second New Music Festival to offer another colorful mix of works by living composers

    With warm weather, many an orchestra slips into a mode of super-popular classics (Tchaikovsky’s “1812 Overture” is a given) and other lighter fare. Although the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra certainly offers its share of this kind of programming — it will perform the soundtrack to a Harry Potter...

  • In Washington debut, ‘Hamilton’ feels freshly relevant

    In Washington debut, ‘Hamilton’ feels freshly relevant

    Complaints and taunts aimed at immigrants. A sex scandal involving a high government official. Intense partisan bickering fueled by short-fused tempers. Tired of being bombarded with all those current, terribly distressing issues? Head to the Kennedy Center Opera House, where the superb national...

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  • 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' review: Raptors delight while humans make a mess of things

    'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' review: Raptors delight while humans make a mess of things

    Of all the terrors on view in “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom,” the sight of Toby Jones’ toupee bobbing up and down, when his character (a sniveling dinosaur auctioneer) dashes into an elevator to alleged safety, with the camera and something called the “Indoraptor” scrambling behind him — reader,...

  • 'Incredibles 2' review: Piling on the action in a 14-years-later sequel

    'Incredibles 2' review: Piling on the action in a 14-years-later sequel

    When writer-director Brad Bird made “The Incredibles” (2004), the superhero movie genre looked nothing like the overcrowded youth hostel it does today. The “X-Men” movies, the fledgling “Spider-Man” franchise and that was about it. This was pre-“Iron Man.” This preceded the entire Marvel Cinematic...

  • 'Superfly' review: One last score, this time in Atlanta

    'Superfly' review: One last score, this time in Atlanta

    The grungy, fairly entertaining remake of “Superfly” borrows a few key narrative hooks from the 1972 original, along with key elements of its fantastic Curtis Mayfield soundtrack (notably “Pusherman”). But for better or worse, the new version has no interest in fashioning the same sort of mashup...

  • 'Tag' review: Don't these guys have anything else to do?

    'Tag' review: Don't these guys have anything else to do?

    Subjects of a 2013 Wall Street Journal feature, the real-life friends who provoked the new comedy “Tag” are, let’s assume, decent guys, fun-loving and supportive and appreciative of having the time and money to keep the same elaborate prankster version of tag going for nearly 30 years. But I kind...

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