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Saturday, October 24, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Review: ‘Bad Boys for Life’ refreshing tribute to ’90s action cinema

Martin Lawrence walks away with “Bad Boys for Life,” reminding audiences what a crucial element he is to the unique mix of action and comedy that makes the “Bad Boys” work. The yin and yang, push and pull of the soft goofball Marcus (Lawrence) and his partner, the hardened Mike (Will Smith), is thrown into even starker relief when Marcus becomes a grandfather. His desire to retire clashes with Mike’s quest for vengeance after being shot by a mysterious motorcyclist, testing the whole “for life” part of the pals’ mantra. Forget boyhood; Marcus just wants to see them become a few “good men.”

Entertaining but ephemeral ‘Spies in Disguise’ takes aim at spy film tropes

There’s a warm message of companionship and teamwork at the center of “Spies in Disguise,” but what makes it subversive is its emphasis on gentler methods of conflict resolution, or at least less bloody ones. It’s refreshing to see bubbles, bubblegum and lots of kitty glitter defeat murderous robots.

Widow of Saints star Will Smith upset at killer’s 25 years

The man who killed retired New Orleans Saints star Will Smith during a traffic dispute has been sentenced to 25 years for manslaughter. Cardell Smith also received a 15-year sentence for wounding Smith’s wife, Racquel, in the traffic dispute last year. The 29-year-old former semi-pro player will get credit for the year he’s already served. The Smith family is disappointed.

Movie review: ‘Collateral Beauty’ is shallow nonsense

“Collateral Beauty” should win some kind of award for Best Execution of a Truly Dreadful Concept. Chock-a-block with magnetic movie stars, and shot beautifully by talented cinematographer Maryse Alberti, all twinkling lights and Christmas in the city, it looks like an important and meaningful film. That’s all smoke and mirrors. Stars and cinematography can’t save the story, which is a misguided tale filled with armchair philosophizing and ultimately meaningless twists.

Manslaughter conviction in death of ex-NFL star Will Smith

The man who fatally shot retired New Orleans Saints defensive leader Will Smith was convicted of manslaughter on Sunday night, ending a week-long trial in which the defendant insisted he only fired because the popular football star was drunk, violent and had grabbed a gun following a traffic crash on the night of April 9.

In Brief: Hawks beat Celtics, roll on to 2nd round

Paul Millsap had 17 points and eight rebounds, and the Atlanta Hawks advanced to the second round of the NBA playoffs with a 104-92 Game 6 victory over the Boston Celtics on Thursday night in Boston.

Ex-Saint Will Smith had loaded gun in SUV when slain

Police found a fully loaded gun inside the vehicle former New Orleans Saints star Will Smith was driving the night he was shot, but there was no evidence that it had been fired, police said Tuesday.

Movie review: ‘Concussion’ doesn’t hit quite as hard as it could

“Concussion,” written and directed by Peter Landesman, establishes two things right away – the extreme reverence that people have for football, through a Hall of Fame acceptance speech by Pittsburgh Steeler “Iron Mike” Webster (David Morse), and the bona fides of Dr. Bennet Omalu (Will Smith), an extremely well-educated Nigerian immigrant and forensic neuropathologist in the Pittsburgh coroner’s office. These are the two conflicting forces throughout the film: the love of the game and the undeniability of science. The basis for the film, the 2009 GQ article “Game Brain” by Jeanne Marie Laskas (she also wrote the subsequent book “Concussion”), relies more heavily on the latter. Omalu is a curious, sensitive man, excited about his work; the kind of coroner who treats his bodies as people, asking them to help him find out what happened to them. This is where Iron Mike ends up, dead at 50, scarred by self-inflicted Taser wounds, living out of his truck, tormented by voices in his head. Needing to know why he ended up this way, Bennet sets off down a self-funded path to discovery, and finds that what he discovers is something that one of the most powerful organizations in the country wants to keep quiet.

Sparks don’t fly in ‘Focus’

The trouble with movies about “The Big Con” is that they condition us not to believe anything we see up on screen – relationships, who is conning whom, deaths, etc. “Focus” one-ups that by pushing a romance to the fore, one that is supposed to be fun, sexy and cute. But when we don’t buy the veteran con man (Will Smith) in love with the hot young acolyte (Margot Robbie), well, what is there to cling to? They generate about as much heat as John Travolta and Idina Menzel managed on Sunday night’s Oscars.

Good actors can survive only so many bad roles

If you’re a huge Hollywood actor and you’ve just poured your heart out in an emotionally exhausting dramatic role, taking a job in a dumb thriller in which most of the work is done by a stunt double must feel like going on a vacation. Sure, everyone needs a break every once in awhile, but a lot of actors have been stuck in vacation mode for too long.