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Movies

DVD reviews: ‘The Water Diviner,’ ‘Home’ and ‘White God’

By Garrett Conti
“The Water Diviner” (2014, R, 111 min., $28.98) Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe makes his directorial debut with a loose adaptation of the book of the ...

Neighborhood movie theaters use unconventional methods to draw customers

By Brian Bowling
With only a single screen available, it’s vital for a neighborhood movie theater to pick the right movie. It’s also tricky. The mystery comedy “The Overnight” ...

Kennywood’s 4-D Theater adds senses of touch, smell to moviegoing experience

By Kellie B. Gormly
In 3-D movies and productions, visual effects pop out of the screen. In a 4-D experience, like in the theater opening at Kennywood Park, your ...

Review: ‘Vacation’ is a funny homage to its predecessor

By Lindsey Bahr
“Vacation” is an over-the-top, often hilarious homage to the original “National Lampoon’s Vacation” from the earnest and talented writing-directing team of John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein. It’s also completely divorced from the reality that made the first so perfect ...

Online viewing of previews boosts movie trailer-makers

By Ryan Faughnder
Movie trailers have become their own kind of blockbusters. Hollywood studios collectively spent $3.16 billion last year on U.S. marketing efforts to draw people to the theaters in the face of competition from new entertainment options, according to Nielsen. The struggle to ...

Pittsburgh company Elite Casino Events got its shot in ‘Southpaw’

By Michael Machosky
Elite Casino Events, a local company owned by Dawn and Billy Takacs, was hired to help stage an important scene for “Southpaw,” set at a ...

Fuqua, Gyllenhaal trained side-by-side for Pittsburgh-shot ‘Southpaw’

By Lindsey Bahr
Director Antoine Fuqua got a distressing call early in pre-production for the boxing drama “Southpaw.” It was Terry Claybon, a boxing expert who’s trained Fuqua for years. He’d just met with Jake Gyllenhaal to see if the actor could fight, ...

Review: A pugilist parable of transformation in ‘Southpaw’

By Jake Coyle
If you’ve ever wondered what might have happened to Job if he had a strong left hook, “Southpaw” may be the film for you. The rapid descent of light-heavyweight champ Billy Hope (Jake Gyllenhaal) in Antoine Fuqua’s boxing drama is ...

Review: ‘Paper Towns’ hits all the right John Hughes-inspired notes

By Katie Walsh
There’s something incredibly satisfying about a well-executed high school film that hits all the right John Hughes-inspired sweet spots. “Paper Towns,” adapted from a novel by “The Fault in Our Stars” writer John Green, does just that, with a twist. ...

Review: Dimwitted ‘Pixels’ falls apart before it begins

By Sandy Cohen
The most believable element in “Pixels” is that alien video-game creatures could attack our planet. The core concept is clever — space aliens misunderstand a recording of old video-games as a declaration of war, and send digital monsters based on ...

DVD reviews: ‘What We Do in the Shadows’ and ‘Tangerines’

By Garrett Conti
“What We Do in the Shadows” (2014, R, 86 min., $29.99) With the overabundance of bad vampire movies fans have been forced to wade through ...

Zombie bridge moves to its final resting place at Heinz History Center

By Gideon Bradshaw
Lying dismembered on the second floor of the Monroeville Mall and surrounded by blood-soaked zombies, a footbridge that has come to symbolize an iconic, homegrown ...

Monessen fighter puts in knockout performance in ‘Southpaw’

By Stacy Wolford
Former boxer Mark Shrader has long been known for his skills in the ring. Turns out, the mixed martial arts trainer can act, too. The lifelong Monessen ...

Zombies’ footbridge heading from Monroeville mall to Heinz History Center museum in Pittsburgh

By Gideon Bradshaw
The footbridge from a cult classic filmed at Monroeville Mall will become one of Pittsburgh’s relics. The mall agreed to donate the bridge that fans recognize ...

Schumer: ‘People have such a low threshold’ for women’s actions

By The Seattle Times
Amy Schumer was riding back from a radio appearance in Seattle the other week when she asked the driver to stop and let her out. After weeks on the road with the sold-out “Trainwreck Comedy Tour” — a never-ending cycle of ...

Review: McKellen plays ‘Mr. Holmes’ like you’ve never seen him

By Colin Covert
The Sherlock we meet in “Mr. Holmes” is a man of growing frailties, gently portrayed by Ian McKellen. Well into the dusk of his life ...

Review: ‘Ant-Man’ has a little hero and a lot to like

By Michael Phillips
“Ant-Man” has been skittering around in development so long, the earliest unproduced screenplays about the tiny superhero actually preceded Disney’s 1989 film “Honey, I Shrunk ...

Review: ‘Trainwreck’ starts off with a bang, keeps laughs rolling

By Michael Phillips
At the risk of raising expectations, the first few scenes of “Trainwreck,” written by and starring current it-comic Amy Schumer, are among the best director ...

DVD reviews: ‘Ex Machina,’ ‘It Follows’ and ‘Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2’

By Garrett Conti
“Ex Machina” (2014, R, 108 min., $19.98) With the everyday advancements in technology, the world continues to shift toward the unbelievable. “Ex Machina,” written and ...

Betsy Hiel: My meeting with Omar

By Betsy Hiel
One of the many delights of living in Cairo was a fortuitous meeting with international movie star Omar Sharif, who was as gracious and charming ...