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The Internship review
20th Century Fox
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‘The Internship’ Review

The term "product placement" feels insufficient to describe the role of Google in 'The Internship.' This is not so much product placement in a movie as movie placement in a product. For two hours, viewers are treated to a series of bright, high-energy sales pitches for the San Francisco search engine and its vast array of products and services -- Google Play, Google Drive, Google Helpline, Google Maps and, of course, plain-old Googley Google -- plus, occasional attempts at comedy from Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson while they stand in front of giant Google logos. Shameless? Absolutely. But that wouldn't be such a problem if 'The Internship' wasn't so mirthless, as well.

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This Is the End Review
Columbia Pictures
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‘This Is the End’ Review

This is the way the world ends; not with a whimper but with an extended improv session featuring Seth Rogen, Jay Baruchel, James Franco, Craig Robinson, Jonah Hill, Danny McBride and a fleet of other popular young comics. On an ordinary night in Los Angeles, the straight-up-biblical apocalypse begins. After the Rapture, our six heroes board themselves up in Franco's Hollywood mansion and wait for a rescue. It never comes. Supplies dwindle. Tensions mount. 'This Is the End.'

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Now You See Me review
Summit Entertainment
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‘Now You See Me’ Review

The magic of cinema and the magic of magic tend to cancel each other out. Once you convince someone they're seeing alternate realities, alien conquerers, and distant futures, pulling a rabbit out of a hat looks a little underwhelming. It is a cruel, sad truth that a single cut negates all the impact of the greatest act of sleight of hand.

So, a movie about magic needs to be about more than just magic. The silly but not entirely unpleasurable 'Now You See Me' is about showmanship. There are a lot of good actors in this movie, including Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Isla Fisher, Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, Melanie Laurent, and Mark Ruffalo. They play illusionists, mentalists, hucksters, debunkers, billionaire industrialists, Interpol officers, and FBI agents, respectively(ish). All of them, no matter whether they're wool-pullers or wool-pullees, look like they're having a grand old time misdirecting us through a labyrinthine plot involving magicians, bank heists, and decades-old vendettas. For a while, the fun is infectious. I found myself chuckling at the outrageous character names -- Dylan Rhodes! Jack Wilder! Arthur Tressler! Thaddeus Bradley! J. Daniel Atlas! -- and grinning at the ludicrous twists. Like a mark at a good magic act, I knew I was being worked over and was enjoying every second.

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After Earth review
Sony Pictures
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‘After Earth’ Review

Seventeen summers ago, Will Smith gave us the catch phrase "welcome to Earth" and then punched an alien in the face. This time he's the invading alien (kinda) and his new line "this is Earth" is much more doom and gloom than swagger. An international icon, father and potentially the next great crazy celebrity, Will Smith is finally ready to pass the baton to his son Jaden.

But it isn't a baton he's using in 'After Earth' (an original sci-fi film based on a story of Smith's own creation) but a C-40 Cutlass – a doohickey kinda like Darth Maul's lightsaber, which springs out different blades depending on what you need. Actually, we never quite know how the Cutlass in 'After Earth' works, but it is one of a number of really nifty gizmos that populates the half-baked mythos of this film.

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Halestorm
Chad Bowar/Loudwire
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Halestorm, Device + More Rock Weather-Shortened 2013 Carolina Rebellion Festival

2013 turned out to be a memorable year for the  festival, but not in the way organizers had hoped. Expanding to two full days at a new venue (Charlotte Motor Speedway) with a high profile lineup had anticipation and expectations at a high level. Unfortunately, Mother Nature did not cooperate.

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prisongates_kIM DARam
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Prisons Get Yelp Reviews From Inmates & Neighbors [Photos]

Yelp, the website that is typically used to rate and grade restaurants, shopping, and just about anything else that you might want to reviews - including prisons!

Yep, former inmates and even neighbors are weighing in on the prison system here in America. Granted not all of the reviews are tongue and cheek with sarcasm, some are actually using Yelp as a way to get out info about mistreatment, abuse, and poor food.

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Category: Photos, Reviews Tags: , ,
Pain and Gain review
Paramount Pictures
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‘Pain and Gain’ Review

I watch a lot of 'Project Runway.' My wife likes it -- and, yeah, I like it too. A show dedicated to fashion design that features creative and powerful women is a weird thing to think about while watching a Michael Bay movie but that's exactly what I did during 'Pain and Gain.' Bay could learn a thing or two from that show about editing. Not in the cinematic, cutting shots together sense; that he's got. This is a different kind of editing.

It's the kind that is often called out by the 'Runway' judges when they tell the contestants (I'm paraphrasing), "This is too busy. You need to edit. That blue fuzzy hat that looks like a tribble distracts from the gorgeous, ornately sequined dress. The dress is enough. You don't need the tribble hat. Edit."

A Michael Bay movie -- particularly 'Pain & Gain' -- is a sequined dress with a blue tribble hat.

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Injustice: Gods Among Us
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Injustice: Gods Among Us Review

Every once in a while, a fighting game comes along that heralds in a new era of brawlers and redefines the genre, changing everything fight fans knew and shakes them to their frame-counting cores. Unfortunately, Injustice: Gods Among Us is not that game. But regardless, it's still a pretty kickass experience for both lovers of fighting games and fans of DC Comics' pantheon of heroes and villains. And for those who like those things all rolled into one, it's something truly entertaining.

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Category: News, Reviews
Dead Island Riptide
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Dead Island: Riptide Review

The follow-up to the surprise hit of the same title, Dead Island: Riptide is now on shelves and ready for you to play with your buddies. Some of you are like me -- you’d heard of the zombie RPG original but missed it in the flood of constant video game releases. So, with fresh and untarnished eyes, here’s my look at Dead Island: Riptide.

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Category: Reviews, Video Games Tags:
Gears of War Judgment
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Gears of War: Judgment Review

Epic’s Gears of War franchise has been a landmark series for the Xbox 360. When the third game in the trilogy proper closed out the story of Marcus and the COG’s war against the Locust, many wondered where the series would go next.

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Category: News, Reviews, Video Games
Tomb Raider
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Tomb Raider Review

Tomb Raider is the next-gen reboot of the critically acclaimed blockbuster series that launched in the mid-90s, most notably on the PlayStation. Since then, we’ve seen the release of roughly 10 Tomb Raider video games and two feature-length films starring Angelina Jolie.

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Category: News, Reviews, Video Games Tags:
Cool Ranch Tacos
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A Review of Taco Bell’s Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Tacos

Taco Bell has been an integral block of my food pyramid for almost two decades. Here is where things get a little odd though -- rarely do I stray from the regular. In the beginning the order was always the same -- three Soft Taco Supremes and three regular crunchy tacos -- with an occasional Grilled Stuft Burrito with beef. Boring but always delivered.

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Category: Food, Reviews

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