A lively 'Dead'
Kenneth Branagh directed and co-stars in "Dead Again," a satisfying send-up of the Hitchcock formula. Emma Thompson co-stars as a woman who doesn't know who she is but is having nightmares in which she is someone else -- a murder victim. Branagh plays the detective who works on the case, and Derek " Jacobi is the antiques dealer who offers to help solve the mystery. Andy Garcia and a mystery superstar are also in the cast, to the advantage of all, beginning with the audience. Language, violence. Rating: R. ** Bring your picnic and a blanket to Ladew Topiary Gardens at 3535 Jarrettsville Pike from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. tomorrow for a Dixieland concert by the Peabody Ragtime Ensemble. Tickets for the outdoor performance are $5, $4 for seniors and $1 for children under 12. Rain date is Sept. 1. Formed in 1974 by Peabody Conservatory students, the group has played more than 3,000 concerts. Current members are Don Stapleson, David Stambler, Jon Mathis, Bill Taylor, Ed Goldstein, Lawrence Cione and Alan Dale.
Funny love triangle
Baltimore actor Wil Love stars in the comedy-mystery "Murder at the Howard Johnson's," the current production at the Totem Pole Playhouse. Written by Ron Clark and Sam Bobrick, this hilarious farce centers on a murderous love triangle. A cheating wife and her lover plot to kill her husband. Then the wife aligns herself with her husband to kill the lover. The two men eventually join forces to eliminate the wife. Directed by Robert Spencer, the play also features Baltimore actor Paul DeBoy. Fast-paced fun. 9555 Golf Course Road, Fayettesville, Pa. Tickets: $16/$15/$14. (717) 352-2164.
Winnie Walsh Except for the metallic "chink" of aluminum bats and the fact that the defending champion is Taiwan, it could almost be the big league thing -- in fact, the tense emotionalism is probably higher than most big bucks pro ballplayers generate. It's the annual Little League World Series, whose title game is scheduled to air live at 4 p.m. today on ABC (Channel 13). The finalists are the American champs from San Ramon Valley, Calif., and, once again, foreign titlist Taiwan. Played in Williamsport, Pa., the 45th annual championship will be called by Brent Musberger and Jim Palmer.