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Top 10 films of 2014 — so far

Angelina Jolie is the live-action version of the classic 'Sleeping Beauty' villain in Disney's spring hit 'Maleficent.' Disney

Although it does happen, it's rare when Oscar fare emerges in the first half of the year. However, that doesn't mean the first half of the year was all garbage; far from it. More

'Strain' TV show comes from novel, comics still in production

The fourth volume of Dark Horse's 'Strain' adaptation, containing the second part of the second book, arrived July 2. Dark Horse

No one has suffered more than artist Mike Huddleston. Artists put in more man-hours on a comic book project than any other member of the creative team, and for Huddleston that's meant three years of his professional life. More

Grapevine: Conscious re-coupling for Paltrow and Martin?

Gwyneth Paltrow -- back with the ex? Michael Buckner / Getty Images

Oscar-winner Gwynneth Paltrow and Coldplay frontman Chris Martin were seen at family dinners with their kids; Jane Austen gets an unflattering wax likeness. More

48 Hours: The best of things to do in Metro Detroit

LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 10: Writer/producer/director Tyler Perry arrives at the premiere of Tyler Perry's 'The Single Moms Club' at the Cinerama Dome on March 10, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images) Kevin Winter / Getty Images

See Tyler Perry at the Women's Empowerment Expo, find some crafty items at the Wyandotte Street Art Fair, see the DSO at the Ford House and more. More

Review: 'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' hits new genre heights

Apes confront some of what is left of human civilization in the sci-fi 'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes,' which takes place a decade after 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes.' Twentieth Century Fox

'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' is the sequel to a prequel to a long line of films that date back to 1968. But it's doubtful any of those films could come close to matching the visual spectacle and Shakespearean interplay. More

Review: 'The Strain' introduces yet another vampire-zombie invasion

Mía Maestro and Corey Stoll star as doctors who investigate mys terious airplane deaths and four survivors in 'The Strain.' FX

'The Strain' can seem a bit strained. Partly it's the soapy sentiments laid over an old-fashioned horror yarn. Partly it's the relentless seriousness of the show. More

Review: 'Third Person' offers strong stories of shattered families

Adrien Brody stars as man who may be caught in a scam run by Moran Atias in 'Third Person.' Maria Marin

There's a sense of despair, of something broken beyond repair, in the intricate 'Third Person,' written and directed by Paul Haggis, writer-director of the Oscar-winning 'Crash.' More

Actor's baby girl born night he debuted in 'Motown the Musical'

 AP

New York — The night of June 17, 2014, won't be easily forgotten by Broadway star Josh Tower. More

Review: Touching 'Hellion' follows a shattered family on the verge

Josh Wiggins stars as a juvenile delinquent who begins to drag his younger brother into harm's way in this gritty, emotionally true family tragedy. Sundance Institute

Director Kat Chandler never lets 'Hellion' become a fable of cheap redemption. In fact, the pain that drives the film seems to be contagious, leading to a harrowing confrontation of messed-up kids. More

Society Confidential: From one beer lover to another

The Stroh's Brewery in Detroit. Detroit News Photo Archive

The July 21 issue of Forbes features an eye-opening story, 'How to Lose $9 Billion: The Fallen Stroh Family,' (Forbes.com) detailing the rise and fall of Detroit's hometown brewing family. More

Review: Cage's 'Rage' is rotten from beginning to end

Max Ryan, left, Nicholas Cage and Michael McGrady star in 'Rage.' Hannibal Classics

'Rage' is a relentless mess of a film, moving from stilted dialogue to countless scenes of senseless violence with plenty of irrelevant side stories along the way. More

WXYZ's Rexroth upbeat following surgery to remove eye

WXYZ Chief Meteorologist Dave Rexroth appears to be in good spirits after his surgery Wednesday to remove an eye after a fireworks accident, even joking about getting a new prosthetic eye. More

'Game of Thrones' earns a leading 19 Emmy nods

Peter Dinklage in a scene from 'Game of Thrones.' The actor received his third nomination as supporting actor for the series. He won in 2011. Helen Sloan / HBO

Los Angeles — The sprawling and bloodthirsty saga 'Game of Thrones,' defying the Emmy Awards' grudging respect for such fantasy fare, emerged as the leader in the nominations announced Thursday with 19 bids, including best drama series. More

Doomsday scenarios: Apocalyptic culture preys on our worst fears again and again

The end is near. It's at your local movie theater, it's on your TV. It's streaming into your computer, on your phone, on your tablet. Apocalyptic culture — books, movies, TV shows that deal with the end of civilization or the world — seems to be coming at us non-stop. More

Review: 'Masters of Sex' returns, haunted by indecision and confusion

Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan star as researchers William Masters and Virginia Johnson in 'Masters of Sex.' Frank W. Ockenfels III / Showtime

As the second season of Showtime's groundbreaking 'Masters of Sex' begins, no one seems the master of anything. It sounds a bit soapy, but there's enough gravitas running through the show to catch your heart. More

10 tasty spots around town to find frozen custard

Harper Hulet, 3, enjoys her vanilla twist with rainbow sprinkles at Bo Jo's in Wyandotte, which has been around for almost 70 years. Clarence Tabb Jr. / The Detroit News

Ice cream's smoother cousin isn't as well known, but there are plenty of places to find it in Metro Detroit. Want something more traditional? We have a guide to ice cream and other frozen treats, too. More

Uncle Kracker joins Under the Sun tour with Sugar Ray, more

Uncle Kracker, aka Matthew Shafer, joins this summer's Under the Sun tour with Sugar Ray, Blues Traveler and more. Sheila Springsteen / Special to The Detroit News

When putting together this year's version of the '90s nostalgia outing Under the Sun, Mark McGrath turned to an old friend: Uncle Kracker. McGrath and Kracker go back to the late '90s together. More

Michigan Lavender Festival expects thousands of well-wishers

Lavender is one of nature's most versatile herbs. Michigan Lavender Festival

Lavender isn't just a pretty purple herb that smells good. It has vast healing properties, says local wellness educator Jennifer Vasich. No wonder the Lavender Festival continues to grow. More

Ragtime Street Fair syncopates Main Street with music and more

Visitors dressed in period costumes enjoy a meal on the lawn at Greenfield Village. The Henry Ford

There should be lots of toe tapping on Main Street at Greenfield Village this weekend when the Ragtime Street Fair swings into town. More

Paramore, Fall Out Boy fire on all cylinders at DTE

Paramore's Hayley Williams performs Tuesday at DTE Energy Music Theatre. Adam Graham / Detroit News

Monumentour — the deliberately over-the-top name given to this summer's joint headlining tour between pop-punk groups Fall Out Boy and Paramore — could have been the first tour to cash in on an idea that doesn't even really exist yet: '00s nostalgia. More

Report: Total value of DIA art ranges from $1.1B to $4.6B

Rodin's 'The Thinker' sits out front of the Detroit Institute of Arts. Brandy Baker / The Detroit News

A New York art investment firm brought in to appraise the full collection at the Detroit Institute of Arts puts its total value between $1.1 billion and $4.6 billion. More

Surgery goes well for WXYZ's Rexroth after fireworks accident

WXYZ-TV Chief Meteorologist Dave Rexroth WXYZ-TV

Surgery went well Wednesday for WXYZ-TV Chief Meteorologist Dave Rexroth, who had an eye removed after he was seriously injured in a fireworks accident on the Fourth of July, according to the station. More

Atwater in the Park turns a church into a tasty biergarten

Taylor Clark carries samples of various beers to a table of customers. Brandy Baker / The Detroit News

One thing isn't in doubt about Atwater in the Park: People simply love to hang out at the new microbrewery in the repurposed church, judging from the crowds. More

Newspaper says sorry after George Clooney slams story

 Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

London — Britain's Daily Mail newspaper apologized to George Clooney on Wednesday for alleging his fiancee's mother opposed the marriage on religious grounds — a story Clooney called both wrong and irresponsible. More

Hashtags play vital role for TV shows, networks and fans

A screengrab from a tweet from the hit ABC show 'Scandal.' The show's cast makes a huge effort to tweet with fans while the show is airing. ABC

During fresh episodes of 'Pretty Little Liars,' the marketing and publicity teams at ABC Family huddle in a conference room to tweet live with fans. More

Ian Hornak show looks back on Macomb Township artist

'Sunflowers with Macaw' 1992, by Ian Hornak Ian Hornak Foundation

Macomb Township may well have produced its share of artistic prodigies, but none more successful than Ian Hornak. The artist's work has been collected by the Smithsonian Institution, the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. More

Review: CBS' 'Extant' a futuristic show with smart touch

Don't hate Halle Berry because she's beautiful. She's certainly a welcome TV presence this summer as the star of 'Extant,' a 13-episode thriller on CBS. More

Grieves busts rap cliches

Grieves distinguishes himself from many other rappers by including more instrumentation and singing. Jenavieve Belair

Rapper Benjamin Laub, who will play the Magic Stick on Wednesday, says he doesn't care about 'the whole cliché rap, money-drugs-guns-women kind of thing.' More

Websites give TV recaps prominent display as they gain popularity

Television recaps allow viewers to return and discuss shows they have seen, often from a fresh perspective and in the company of other viewers. Entertainment Weekly

In the old media world, writers were expected to tell readers what they didn't know. In the current, online-dominated one, writers often gain more traction telling readers what they already do. Hence: recaps. More

'Once' director finds magic of music 'Begin Again'

Director John Carney says he'd like to create a whole series of films exploring music. Andrew Schwartz / Weinstein Co.

'Begin Again' shares DNA with 'Once,' but they're different films, starting with the fact that the new movie comes with a bigger budget, professional actors — and bigger expectations. More

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