CD reviews

DVD reviews: Mr. Nice Guy

This week, we begin on the couch: Marjane Satrapi, the Iranian-born director of the animated marvel Persepolis, guides a wide-eyed Ryan Reynolds through his spirited role as Jerry, a shy, unassuming man who seems to lead two lives.

Dallas Morning News file photo

Single stirs up country listeners

Alana Lynn, a morning co-host on country music station KAWO-FM in Boise, Idaho, was excited to play Little Big Town’s latest single for her listeners. “Girl Crush,” a powerful ballad about a woman envious of her ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend, seemed destined to be a hit.


Transformative power of art

LOVELAND, Colo. — A national movement that counts on painters, dancers and musicians to help revitalize downtowns is coming to this Colorado city as the first residents prepare to move into new low-income apartments built for artists and their families.

Briefly in the arts

University of North Texas will host the Moral Cultures of Food Conference, an event with panels and lectures on food ethics, Thursday through Saturday at the Business Leadership Building, 1307 W. Highland St.

Courtesy photo

Jim Stodola: Letting the good times roll

We tried for days to leave Denton between the ice, sleet and snowstorms.

Christian Waits

‘King and I’ brings out young voices

DALLAS — Not every 6-year-old bursts into a blissful rendition of “Getting to Know You” on request.

The Dallas Morning News

Snoop opens up in keynote

AUSTIN — Music lovers old enough to remember 1992 recognized Snoop Dogg’s greatness the moment he was introduced to the world, when he delivered the opening verse on Dr. Dre’s classic “Nuthin’ but a ‘G’ Thang.” The character and cadence of his rapping, the unmistakable drip in his voice — he’s one of those rare artists who arrived on the national scene fully formed and spitting gold.

The Dallas Morning News

Soul ascension

AUSTIN — Leon Bridges is new to South by Southwest, the annual event whose music portion kicked into high gear Wednesday in the state’s capital. But fortunately for the stylish Fort Worth soul man, he enters the fray as one of the hottest new acts among the more than 2,000 playing showcases.


Gaming must evolve to woo more players

AUSTIN — Women and minorities are ignored. Prices are too high. Games are too long and too difficult. These aren’t the complaints of disgruntled consumers but observations from top gaming executives at the South by Southwest games festival in Austin.

Disney Enterprises

DVD reviews: Shadow dance

This week, we begin in the forest: In this handsome, Oscar-nominated production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine’s stage musical, an excellent cast of actors, singers and singing actors enlivens the fairy-tale mash-up directed by Rob Marshall (Chicago).

Courtesy photo

Briefly in the arts

Dallas artist Dotty Zamora will demonstrate encaustic techniques at the upcoming meeting of the Visual Arts Society of Texas.

CD reviews

Ahna Hubnik, UNT

Briefly in the arts

The Friends of the UNT Libraries group is hosting its annual dinner and meeting at 6 p.m. March 26 at Willis Library on the University of North Texas campus.

For The Dallas Morning News

Laugh fest

The formalities of the prestige festival circuit do not apply at the South by Southwest Film Conference and Festival — a tuxedo or gown would likely end up stained with barbecue sauce or splashed with beer.


DVD reviews: Biting realism

This week, we begin in Australia: Ewan McGregor stars in this action-filled Australian crime drama as Brendan Lynch, a jailed convict who befriends a naive young prisoner, JR (Brenton Thwaites), and protects him from prison abuse.

CD reviews

Denton Community Theatre

Testing ‘simple’

Whether Denton Community Theatre wins the state contest of a national festival or loses, actress Julie Brinker said she means to have fun Thursday afternoon in Lewisville.


Sounds electric


Big break

Carol Martin always knew her daughter, Caila, was meant for a career in show business. At 9 months old, before Caila could even speak, she’d mimic her favorite cartoons. As she got older, she’d act every character and recite every line in her favorite movies.

Invision/AP file photo

Flood of creativity

LOS ANGELES — If you haven’t seen one of Peter Max’s paintings or drawings today, chances are you haven’t opened your eyes yet.

Cohen Media Group

DVD reviews: Revolutionary role

This week, we begin in South America: Alberto Arvelo directed this Spanish- and English-language bio-pic about Simón Bolívar, the revolutionary leader who helped liberate much of South America from the Spanish in the early 1800s (a liberator, not a dictator).

AP file photo

A matter of control

SAN FRANCISCO — At the Game Developers Conference, it’s easy to imagine what virtual reality will look like when it eventually hits the marketplace. What it will feel like, however, is an entirely different matter.

Lancaster Studio

Briefly in the arts

The University of North Texas Opera Theatre closes its run of Tales of Hoffmann at 3 p.m. today at the Lyric Theatre at the Murchison Performing Arts Center, on the north side of Interstate 35E at North Texas Boulevard.

Lisa Cameron

‘Gender euphoria’

Austin drummer Lisa Cameron wishes more people would just ask questions. She’s game for talking about her life, which began in Kansas as a quiet, shy boy named Dave.


Art world avenger visits TWU

Complain, complain, complain. Artist Kathe Kollwitz got one of her biggest laughs of the night — and it was an evening with lots of laughter — when she shared one of her many weapons against an art world that is, in the words of environmentalist John Muir, too male, too pale and too stale.

DVD reviews: Mad wrestlers and animated fairies

In this fact-based, five-time Oscar-nominated film directed by nominee Bennett Miller (Capote, Moneyball), Channing Tatum plays Olympic wrestler Mark Shultz, with nominee Mark Ruffalo as his brother and co-medalist Dave Shultz.

Owner of iconic venue earns arts award

Dan Mojica, the owner of one of Denton’s most venerated music venues, said he was “stunned” when the Greater Denton Arts Council told him he won the 2015 Community Arts Recognition Award.

John Shearer/Invision/AP

Oscar speeches touch on numerous causes

LOS ANGELES — Hollywood is smarter than you thought. Whether by design or chance, the 87th Academy Awards elegantly and subtly shifted the tone of the season from a reductive fixation on snubs and fact-checking to a positive celebration of original filmmaking and purposeful advocacy for causes as diverse as immigration, suicide and equal rights.

The Dallas Morning News

Market trends

DALLAS — You might think nothing’s going on at the Dallas Farmers Market right now, given the midwinter farmer slump and the daunting construction forming a mud moat around enclosed Shed No. 2, now called The Market.


Host: ‘The crazier the better’

LOS ANGELES — Neil Patrick Harris might use his job as Oscar host as a way to meet his favorite stars.


The envelope, please

LOS ANGELES — The 87th Academy Awards will be handed out tonight, and Associated Press film writers Jake Coyle and Lindsey Bahr share their predictions for a ceremony that could be a nail-biter.

Briefly in the community

How does an intense workout and a night of drinks mix together with your body? That’s a question University of North Texas researchers hope to answer.

Briefly in the arts

Graduate students at the University of North Texas College of Visual Arts and Design will host a graduate open studio night from 4 to 8 p.m. March 5 at Oak Street Hall, 1120 W. Oak St.

Sony Pictures Classics

DVD Reviews: High hat and mean bass

This week, we begin in rehearsals: Miles Teller stars in this five-time Oscar-nominated film, which is up for awards including best picture, but Oscar-nominated J.K. Simmons steals the show from his younger co-star.

Midlake documentary fills Campus Theatre to capacity

Actor Jason Lee preferred to give one of his favorite bands the spotlight — both in the documentary he directed about Denton’s Midlake — and in the question-and-answer session afterward.

Music Reviews

Thin Line Schedule

The Dallas Morning News

Kilgore fans cheer on doc

Flips, kicks, spins and the good old red, white and blue — these are the things that inspired the documentary Sweethearts of the Gridiron, which will play to a sold-out audience during this year’s Thin Line, a five-day local film, music and photography festival in Denton.

Kino Lorber

DVD review: Wartime thriller

This week we begin in the Civil War: A relatively unknown but highly talented cast and crew combined to create this excellent period piece filled with dynamic characters and compelling themes.

CD reviews

Ed Steele Photography LLC

Picture show

For the first time, Denton’s Thin Line festival will feature a photography portion, showcasing photographers and their work from all over the world.

Sony Pictures Classics

Afflictions hold sway over Oscar voters

LOS ANGELES — Oscar envelopes have been full of surprises over the years, yet one pattern persists: Academy voters are moved by affliction.

AP file photo

Eddie Murphy keeps busy

LONDON — Eddie Murphy’s biggest success in music came on his first try, with the 1985 smash “Party All the Time.” After that, not much was heard from the entertainer on the musical front — but he kept on plugging away at it out of the spotlight.

Staff photo

Big talk

Denton resident Sonny Strait has talked his way out of plenty of situations, but for the past 17 years, he’s been talking his way into them.

John Shearer/Invision/AP

Sam Smith takes home 4 Grammys

LOS ANGELES — Sam Smith was the king of the Grammys, taking home three of the top four awards, including song and record of the year for “Stay With Me,” and best new artist, while Beck won album of the year.