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Beyonce Documentary to Premiere Saturday on HBO

Randy Lewis
Los Angeles Times (MCT)

LOS ANGELES — Beyonce says that HBO’s new documentary, “Beyonce: Life Is But a Dream,” was the outgrowth of her sense that despite more than a dozen years in the public spotlight, first with the group Destiny’s Child then as a breakout solo performer who has become one of the pop music world’s biggest stars, “people didn’t know who I was.”

The film, which premieres Saturday on the cable channel, examines the artist’s life and touches on several topics that she hasn’t discussed previously in public, which the singer said she found to be cathartic.

“This movie has really been my therapy,” the 31-year-old singer said at the film’s New York premiere screening Tuesday night. “I’ve healed from so many wounds ... and hopefully I can inspire other people.”

That sentiment extends to Blue Ivy, the daughter born last year to Beyonce and hubby Jay-Z.

“I’m hoping that ... it can comfort her and inspire her in her life when she needs it,” she told the Associated Press.

In the film she talks about taking over management of her career from her father, Matthew Knowles, who had been guiding her life since childhood.

“When you’re trying to have an everyday conversation with your family you have to talk about scheduling and you have to talk about your album and performing and touring,” she says in the film. “It’s just too stressful and it really affects your relationship.”

She also addressed what she describes as “the most ridiculous rumor” she ever faced, that she used a surrogate mother to carry a child after her previous miscarriage.

“I respect mothers and women so much and to be able to experience bringing a child into the world — if you’re lucky and fortunate enough to experience that — I would never take that for granted,” she said. “Especially after losing a child, the pain and trauma from that just makes it mean so much more to get an opportunity to bring a life into the world. It’s something you have to respect. … There’s certain things you just shouldn’t play around with and a child, you don’t play around with that.”

So far J. J. Abrams and Rian Johnson resemble children at play, remaking the films they fell in love with. As an audience, however, we desire a fuller experience.

As recently as the lackluster episodes I-III of the Star Wars saga, the embossed gold logo followed by scrolling prologue text was cause for excitement. In the approach to the release of any of the then new prequel installments, the Twentieth Century Fox fanfare, followed by the Lucas Film logo, teased one's impulsive excitement at a glimpse into the next installment's narrative. Then sat in the movie theatre on the anticipated day of release, the sight and sound of the Twentieth Century Fox fanfare signalled the end of fevered anticipation. Whatever happened to those times? For some of us, is it a product of youth in which age now denies us the ability to lose ourselves within such adolescent pleasure? There's no answer to this question -- only the realisation that this sensation is missing and it has been since the summer of 2005. Star Wars is now a movie to tick off your to-watch list, no longer a spark in the dreary reality of the everyday. The magic has disappeared… Star Wars is spiritually dead.

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This has been a remarkable year for shoegaze. If it were only for the re-raising of two central pillars of the initial scene it would still have been enough, but that wasn't even the half of it.

It hardly needs to be said that the last 12 months haven't been everyone's favorite, but it does deserve to be noted that 2017 has been a remarkable year for shoegaze. If it were only for the re-raising of two central pillars of the initial scene it would still have been enough, but that wasn't even the half of it. Other longtime dreamers either reappeared or kept up their recent hot streaks, and a number of relative newcomers established their place in what has become one of the more robust rock subgenre subcultures out there.

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Theatre

​'The Ferryman': Ephemeral Ideas, Eternal Tragedies

The current cast of The Ferryman in London's West End. Photo by Johan Persson. (Courtesy of The Corner Shop)

Staggeringly multi-layered, dangerously fast-paced and rich in characterizations, dialogue and context, Jez Butterworth's new hit about a family during the time of Ireland's the Troubles leaves the audience breathless, sweaty and tearful, in a nightmarish, dry-heaving haze.

"Vanishing. It's a powerful word, that"

Northern Ireland, Rural Derry, 1981, nighttime. The local ringleader of the Irish Republican Army gun-toting comrades ambushes a priest and tells him that the body of one Seamus Carney has been recovered. It is said that the man had spent a full ten years rotting in a bog. The IRA gunslinger, Muldoon, orders the priest to arrange for the Carney family not to utter a word of what had happened to the wretched man.

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Aaron Sorkin's real-life twister about Molly Bloom, an Olympic skier turned high-stakes poker wrangler, is scorchingly fun but never takes its heroine as seriously as the men.

Chances are, we will never see a heartwarming Aaron Sorkin movie about somebody with a learning disability or severe handicap they had to overcome. This is for the best. The most caffeinated major American screenwriter, Sorkin only seems to find his voice when inhabiting a frantically energetic persona whose thoughts outrun their ability to verbalize and emote them. The start of his latest movie, Molly's Game, is so resolutely Sorkin-esque that it's almost a self-parody. Only this time, like most of his better work, it's based on a true story.

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7

There's something characteristically English about the Royal Society, whereby strangers gather under the aegis of some shared interest to read, study, and form friendships and in which they are implicitly agreed to exist insulated and apart from political differences.

There is an amusing detail in The Curious World of Samuel Pepys and John Evelyn that is emblematic of the kind of intellectual passions that animated the educated elite of late 17th-century England. We learn that Henry Oldenburg, the first secretary of the Royal Society, had for many years carried on a bitter dispute with Robert Hooke, one of the great polymaths of the era whose name still appears to students of physics and biology. Was the root of their quarrel a personality clash, was it over money or property, over love, ego, values? Something simple and recognizable? The precise source of their conflict was none of the above exactly but is nevertheless revealing of a specific early modern English context: They were in dispute, Margaret Willes writes, "over the development of the balance-spring regulator watch mechanism."

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