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Embattled and emboldened: Arts and culture in the age of Trump

In these desperate political days when facts are being flicked away like flies, a minor incident in Anton Chekhov’s “The Three Sisters” keeps replaying itself in my mind. Ivan Chebutykin, an army doctor and an old friend of the Prozorov family, carelessly drops an expensive clock that Irina, the...

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  • Writers Guild of America seeks a strike authorization vote

    Writers Guild of America seeks a strike authorization vote

    After two weeks of negotiations, the Writers Guild of America, West is asking its members to authorize a strike. The union called for the strike authorization vote — a tactic that unions use to gain leverage in contract negotiations — after talks broke down with the Alliance of Motion Picture and...

  • Sharr White's 'Snow Geese' gets an assured West Coast premiere

    Sharr White's 'Snow Geese' gets an assured West Coast premiere

    Ever suddenly get the feeling that the world you thought you knew isn’t the one you’re actually living in? Linking that sense of existential vertigo with times of violent social upheaval, Independent Shakespeare Co. presents the West Coast premiere of Sharr White’s “The Snow Geese” in its intimate...

  • Rogue Machine's surprisingly sentimental drama from the co-writer of 'Birdman'

    Rogue Machine's surprisingly sentimental drama from the co-writer of 'Birdman'

    The Oscar-winning co-writer of the film “Birdman,” Alexander Dinelaris, toys with themes of human mortality and the after-effects of pathological parenting in his frustratingly uneven play “Still Life,” now at Rogue Machine Theatre. The action centers on Carrie Ann (Laurie Okin), a successful professional...

  • Saturday's TV highlights and weekend talk: 'Independence Day: Resurgence' on HBO

    Saturday's TV highlights and weekend talk: 'Independence Day: Resurgence' on HBO

    SERIES Ransom Five teenagers playing a smartphone game are lured into a deadly trap in an abandoned building in France. Luke Roberts, Sarah Green and Brandon Jay McLaren star in this new episode, and Camille Langer, Boyd Ferguson, Britta Meier, Simon Holman and Logan Smythe guest star. 8 p.m....

  • 'Wilson's' Daniel Clowes, patron saint of misfits and curmudgeons

    'Wilson's' Daniel Clowes, patron saint of misfits and curmudgeons

    The graphic novelist Daniel Clowes was in the landmark Strand bookstore on a recent weekday, browsing the section of his chosen profession. “Let me see if my signature is in here,” he said, flipping open a hardback copy of his time-travel romance “Patience.” “Oh, good,” he said upon seeing a clean...

  • Citing bronchitis, Eric Clapton postpones weekend Forum concerts

    Citing bronchitis, Eric Clapton postpones weekend Forum concerts

    Guitar hero Eric Clapton has postponed two concerts scheduled for this weekend at the Forum in Inglewood. Citing “severe bronchitis,” the artist, who first achieved fame for his work with Cream and Derek & the Dominoes before going solo, will reschedule the concerts for the fall. Clapton, 71, has...

  • 'Love Actually' mini-sequel keeps it written in the cards

    'Love Actually' mini-sequel keeps it written in the cards

    Sure, rom-com enthusiasts might be having all the feels now that the “sequel” to 2003’s “Love Actually” has been unveiled (for some of us, at least), but Andrew Lincoln has a bone to pick. “I don't say anything!” Lincoln playfully cracked during a recent sit-down to discuss “The Walking Dead.”...

MOVIE REVIEWS

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  • How 'Deadpool's' writers found scary new 'Life' in a familiar space alien story

    How 'Deadpool's' writers found scary new 'Life' in a familiar space alien story

    With a resume that includes zombies, soldiers, a smart-mouthed superhero and now astronauts fighting a creature in space, screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick have become specialists in crafting genre hybrids and defying expectations. Their latest film, the sci-fi thriller “Life,” had its...

  • Unfunny comedy 'Walk of Fame' takes aim at everyone

    Unfunny comedy 'Walk of Fame' takes aim at everyone

    Aggressive and aggressively unfunny, Hollywood-set comedy “Walk of Fame” hates its characters and its audience — and the feeling is mutual. The debut of writer-director Jesse Thomas never elicits laughter, just questions: How did this get made? How much longer is it? How many times will I have...

  • AT&T workers end their strike in California and Nevada

    AT&T workers end their strike in California and Nevada

    Thousands of AT&T technicians in California and Nevada went back to work Thursday, ending a one-day strike after their union and the Dallas telecommunications giant reached a truce. An estimated 17,000 union members had gone on strike early Wednesday over a grievance about increased responsibilities...

  • The life of dance legend Martha Graham, step by step, falls and all

    The life of dance legend Martha Graham, step by step, falls and all

    Can anyone fill Martha Graham’s shoes? That’s a formidable challenge for the young performers who take on her roles, but it may be even more ambitious to embody the real-life grande dame of American modern dance. Actress and former professional dancer Christina Carlisi makes an admirable attempt...

  • Kazakh crime thriller 'Diamond Cartel' is a best-forgotten mess

    Kazakh crime thriller 'Diamond Cartel' is a best-forgotten mess

    Perhaps most disheartening about the disjointed mess “Diamond Cartel” is that it will go down as the late, great Peter O’Toole’s final screen appearance. What he was doing in this cheesy, Kazakhstan shot-and-set crime thriller is anyone’s guess; that he’s scarcely in it may be the saving grace....

  • Creepy thriller 'Dig Two Graves' evokes the best of Stephen King

    Creepy thriller 'Dig Two Graves' evokes the best of Stephen King

    The slow-burning supernatural thriller “Dig Two Graves” was co-written by Jeremy Phillips and director Hunter Adams, but if the credits said “based on a story by Stephen King,” few viewers would be surprised. Like the best of King, Adams’ film finds dread and mystery in the lives of ordinary folks...

  • Minimalist Icelandic sci-fi drama 'Bokeh' ponders the End

    Minimalist Icelandic sci-fi drama 'Bokeh' ponders the End

    A young couple’s Icelandic vacation turns into an existential mystery in the admirably stripped-down “Bokeh,” a sci-fi drama without all the explanatory “sci.” With its bare-bones approach, the first feature by writer-directors Geoffrey Orthwein and Andrew Sullivan distills even the backstory of...

  • Thursday's TV highlights: 'Baskets' on FX

    Thursday's TV highlights: 'Baskets' on FX

    SERIES The History of Comedy This new episode explores the evolution of racial humor and how comedy can cross cultural barriers. 7 and 10 p.m. CNN Superstore Jonah and Cheyenne (Ben Feldman, Nichole Bloom) try to give Mateo (Nico Santos) legal advice when his hopes of transferring to one of the...

  • 'The Flash' and 'Supergirl' musical crossover kills with cuteness

    'The Flash' and 'Supergirl' musical crossover kills with cuteness

    If the first CW television crossover between “The Flash” and “Supergirl” back in March of 2016 sparked the superhero friendship, Tuesday night’s musical revue cemented it with tap shoes. Watching the jaunty episode titled “Duet” was like inhaling pure joy — a saccharine-saturated performance so...

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