It's true that an Anna Faris-Andy Samberg body-switching comedy will probably not amount to very much, cinematically. But it's also worth remembering a premise as stupid as that and then some that became a terrifically entertaining movies in the right, er, hands:
It would be easy to say that All of Me works because Steve Martin and Lily Tomlin are brilliant. But the movie actually needs more explanation like that. The premise, that a swami is going to move the soul of a rich, crotchety terminally ill lady with no friends into the body of a sexy blonde employee who believes her soul is headed off cheerfully into the ether via a great deal of silliness, is absurd. It's the kind of thing that if Mike Myers did it would be about the ridiculous guru and would be terminally awful.
But All of Me works, and doesn't just work, is wonderful for a couple of external reasons. First, the silly premise is totally beside the point: it's just a vehicle for Martin and Tomlin to get to know each other, much as being forced to work together at a television station, or getting accidentally pregnant, are to today's romantic comedies. Second, the writing is often genius. It reads like Woody Allen at his best in short fiction. In what romantic comedy today, much less a body-switching one, would a lawyer declare to his rather difficult rich-lady client, "Just because my grandfather didn't rape the environment and exploit the workers doesn't make me a peasant. And it's not that he didn't want to rape the environment and exploit the workers, I'm sure he did. It's just that as a barber, he didn't have that much opportunity"?
But mostly the movie works because Martin and Tomlin are both just genius physical comedians. You believe Tomlin's in there somewhere, because Martin's body is behaving so bizarrely.
I am entirely sure that Samberg and Faris won't be the beneficiaries of such good writing. And I'm less sure, though still reasonably confident, that neither of them can quite pull off the physical comedy. Faris wasn't bad, teetering on absurd heels in The House Bunny, or miming sexy-Marilyn-over-a-grate-gone-horribly-wrong-and-resulting-in-burns. But Martin lives in another land of comedy altogether, beyond the anarchic, into the impossible. I don't think Samberg has the chops at all. My bet: lots of groping at newly-discovered body parts and funny walks. And a distinct lack of entertainment.
She lived with us for 56 years. She raised me and my siblings without pay. I was 11, a typical American kid, before I realized who she was.
The ashes filled a black plastic box about the size of a toaster. It weighed three and a half pounds. I put it in a canvas tote bag and packed it in my suitcase this past July for the transpacific flight to Manila. From there I would travel by car to a rural village. When I arrived, I would hand over all that was left of the woman who had spent 56 years as a slave in my family’s household.
The condition has long been considered untreatable. Experts can spot it in a child as young as 3 or 4. But a new clinical approach offers hope.
This is a good day, Samantha tells me: 10 on a scale of 10. We’re sitting in a conference room at the San Marcos Treatment Center, just south of Austin, Texas, a space that has witnessed countless difficult conversations between troubled children, their worried parents, and clinical therapists. But today promises unalloyed joy. Samantha’s mother is visiting from Idaho, as she does every six weeks, which means lunch off campus and an excursion to Target. The girl needs supplies: new jeans, yoga pants, nail polish.
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At 11, Samantha is just over 5 feet tall and has wavy black hair and a steady gaze. She flashes a smile when I ask about her favorite subject (history), and grimaces when I ask about her least favorite (math). She seems poised and cheerful, a normal preteen. But when we steer into uncomfortable territory—the events that led her to this juvenile-treatment facility nearly 2,000 miles from her family—Samantha hesitates and looks down at her hands. “I wanted the whole world to myself,” she says. “So I made a whole entire book about how to hurt people.”
U.K. police said at least 19 people are dead and 50 injured following the incident at Manchester Arena.
Here’s what we know:
—Greater Manchester Police said 19 people are dead and 50 injured following reports of an explosion at the Manchester Arena.
—The venue was the scene of an Ariana Grande concert. British Transport Police said there were “reports of an explosion within the foyer area of the stadium” at 10.30 p.m. local time, but Manchester Arena said the incident occurred “outside the venue in a public place.”
—There’s no word yet on what caused the incident, but authorities said they were treating the incident as a terrorist attack “until police know otherwise.”
—This is a developing story and we’ll be following it here. All updates are in Eastern Standard Time (GMT -4).
The office was, until a few decades ago, the last stronghold of fashion formality. Silicon Valley changed that.
Americans began the 20th century in bustles and bowler hats and ended it in velour sweatsuits and flannel shirts—the most radical shift in dress standards in human history. At the center of this sartorial revolution was business casual, a genre of dress that broke the last bastion of formality—office attire—to redefine the American wardrobe.
Born in Silicon Valley in the early 1980s, business casual consists of khaki pants, sensible shoes, and button-down collared shirts. By the time it was mainstream, in the 1990s, it flummoxed HR managers and employees alike. “Welcome to the confusing world of business casual,” declared a fashion writer for the Chicago Tribune in 1995. With time and some coaching, people caught on. Today, though, the term “business casual” is nearly obsolete for describing the clothing of a workforce that includes many who work from home in yoga pants, put on a clean T-shirt for a Skype meeting, and don’t always go into the office.
Isabel Caliva and her husband, Frank, had already “kicked the can down the road.” The can, in their case, was the kid conversation; the road was Caliva’s fertile years. Frank had always said he wanted lots of kids. Caliva, who was in her early 30s, thought maybe one or two would be nice, but she was mostly undecided. They had a nice life, with plenty of free time that allowed for trips to Portugal, Paris, and Hawaii.
“I wasn’t feeling the pull the same way my friends were describing,” she told me recently. “I thought, maybe this isn’t gonna be the thing for me. Maybe it’s just going to be the two of us.”
At times, she wondered if her lack of baby fever should be cause for concern. She took her worries to the Internet, where she came across a post on the Rumpus’ “Dear Sugar” advice column titled, “The Ghost Ship that Didn’t Carry Us.” The letter was from a 41-year-old man who was also on the fence about kids: “Things like quiet, free time, spontaneous travel, pockets of non-obligation,” he wrote. “I really value them.”
The president reportedly attempted to enlist the head of the NSA and director of national intelligence to defend against the Russia inquiry.
President Donald Trump reportedly tried, unsuccessfully, to enlist Admiral Michael Rogers, the director of the National Security Agency, and Daniel Coats, the director of national intelligence, to publicly refute the possibility of collusion after former FBI Director James Comey announced in March that the bureau is investigating potential links between Trump campaign associates and the Russian government, according to The Washington Post on Monday.
Citing unnamed government officials, the Post’s Adam Entous and Ellen Nakashima report that Trump asked Coats and Rogers “to publicly deny the existence of any evidence of collusion during the 2016 election.” But, according to the report, the intelligence officials turned down the ask, “which they both deemed to be inappropriate.” The White House told the Post that it would not confirm or deny the allegations.
The story of a decades-long lead-poisoning lawsuit in New Orleans illustrates how the toxin destroys black families and communities alike.
Casey Billieson was fighting against the world.
Hers was a charge carried by many mothers: moving mountains to make the best future for her two sons. But the mountains she faced were taller than most. To start, she had to raise her boys in the Lafitte housing projects in Treme, near the epicenter of a crime wave in New Orleans. In the spring of 1994, like mothers in violent cities the world over, Billieson anticipated the bloom in murders the thaw would bring. Fueled by the drug trade and a rising scourge of police corruption and brutality, violence rose to unseen levels that year, and the city’s murder rate surged to the highest in the country.
The top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee says Flynn misinformed the Defense Department last year about foreign payments he received from a state-run Russian TV channel.
In a letter to the House Oversight Committee chairman Monday, a top Democratic lawmaker suggested former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn broke the law last year by making false statements during a background-check interview for his top-secret security clearance. Lying to federal investigators during a background check can be a felony under federal law.
Maryland Representative Elijah Cummings, who serves as the ranking member on the Oversight Committee, said Flynn may have lied to Defense Department examiners about his foreign income sources while under questioning.
The letter, addressed to his Republican counterpart Jason Chaffetz, quotes excerpts from the Defense Department’s Report of Information, a document typically filled out during the background-check interview. Pentagon investigators conducted Flynn’s interview in February 2016 after he applied for a routine five-year renewal of his top-secret clearance. The retired lieutenant general told them about a trip he’d taken to Moscow two months earlier, describing it as “a conference for the Russia media,” according to Cummings’s excerpts of the report.
The American president has surprised everyone with his enthusiasm for the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. But he might not understand what he's getting into.
JERUSALEM—Is Donald Trump the last best hope for the peace process?
As a candidate, Trump was an iconoclast in many ways, but by and large he hewed to the positions on Israel typical of Republican presidential candidates. Trump promised to move the United States Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and railed against the Iran deal.
Trump’s promises reassured the Israeli right and the pro-Israel American right. He earned rave reviews from figures like the Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett, who declared after the election that “Trump's victory is a tremendous opportunity for Israel to immediately announce its intention to renege on the idea of establishing Palestine in the heart of the country—a direct blow to our security and the justice of our cause.”