Obama: With tech advances come privacy risks for US

first_imgWASHINGTON | President Barack Obama on Monday proposed strengthening laws against identity theft by requiring notification when consumer information is hacked, providing more free access to credit scores and protecting students’ private data.President Barack Obama speaks at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) offices at the Constitution Center in Washington, Monday, Jan. 12, 2015, about his plan to improve confidence in technology by tackling identify theft and improving consumer and student privacy. The president wants Congress to pass legislation requiring companies to inform customers within 30 days if their data has been hacked, a move that follows high-profile breaches at retailers including Target, Home Depot and Neiman Marcus. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)Obama said identity theft is a growing problem that costs billions of dollars and can “ruin your life.” He said the age of technology and digital innovation has created enormous vulnerabilities for the U.S. and cited the recent hack on Sony Pictures Entertainment as an example.“This is a direct threat to the economic security of American families and we need to stop it,” Obama said in a speech at the Federal Trade Commission. “If we are going to be connected, we need to be protected.”Just as Obama finished speaking, the Twitter and YouTube accounts for U.S. Central Command were taken over by hackers who claimed to be working on behalf of Islamic State militants.Obama, previewing a push he plans to make in the State of the Union address next week, wants Congress to pass legislation called the Personal Data Notification and Protection Act, which would require companies to inform customers within 30 days if their data has been hacked.Recent hackings at retailers including Target, Home Depot and Neiman Marcus have exposed the lack of uniform practices for alerting customers in the event of a breach. The White House has blamed last month’s hacking at Sony Pictures Entertainment on North Korea and responded with new sanctions against the isolated nation.Obama says every state currently has its own policy on when companies must notify consumers of a breach and that there should be a single standard across the country and baseline protections across industries. The legislation would also make it a crime to sell customers’ identities overseas.Obama said the United States was founded in a “spirit of privacy that should not be breeched.”“We pioneered the internet but we also pioneered the Bill of Rights,” he said.Obama also called for more free access to all consumer credit rating services. While customers can get annual credit reports free once a year, FICO credit scores typically cost money to obtain, although some banks have been offering them free to customers.He also wants to prevent companies from selling student data to third parties and from using information collected in school to engage in targeted advertising.The Student Digital Privacy Act would prohibit companies from selling student data to third parties, a move spurred by the increased use of technology in schools that can scoop up personal information.A White House official said the proposed bill is based on a California statute pushed by Common Sense Media, a group that promotes privacy. The organization said the proliferation of online platforms, mobile applications, cloud computing and other technology allows businesses to collect sensitive data about students including contact information, academic records, and even what students eat for lunch or whether they ride the bus to school.“We applaud President Obama for standing up for school children, who deserve the opportunity to use educational websites and apps to enrich their learning without fear that their personal information will be exploited for commercial purposes or fall into the wrong hands,” Common Sense Media CEO James Steyer said in a statement.The Center for Democracy & Technology also said it supports Obama’s moves to protect the data, while pointing out that his administration still uses electronic surveillance for national security purposes.“Even with these proposed reforms, we must not forget about government surveillance reform,” said Nuala O’Connor, the group’s president. “Without the end to the mass surveillance practices of the U.S. government, any privacy reform is woefully incomplete.”It’s unclear whether the new Republican-led Congress will take up Obama’s legislative proposals.Follow Nedra Pickler on Twitter at https://twitter.com/nedrapicklerlast_img read more

Continue reading

Some like it hot — cheesecake, that is

first_imgCheesecake is usually served cold. So brace yourself for something a little different.The first time I made this recipe, I pulled it out of the oven and set it on the counter to cool. The plan was to chill it overnight in the refrigerator. But my dear daughter — also known as The Girl with the Sweet Tooth — just couldn’t wait to dig in. So I handed her a spoon. And when she started babbling with delight, I tried it, too.Boing! It was ridiculously good. So good that I now recommend that you serve this cheesecake hot, right out of the oven, topped with a little vanilla ice cream or sweetened whipped cream. Spring it on your guests during New Year’s Eve and see if the party doesn’t become even more cheerful.That said, getting there requires some care. Be sure to buy plain pumpkin puree, which is sometimes labeled solid pack pumpkin. Avoid anything labeled “pumpkin pie filling” or “pumpkin pie mix,” both of which contain unwanted sugar and spices. You’re much better off adding those ingredients yourself.Also, don’t forget to drain the pumpkin puree. Losing the excess liquid from the puree improves the final texture and flavor of the cake.The cooking also requires some care. You’re going to cook the cake in a water bath, which helps to equalize the temperature in the oven and prevents overcooking. But first the springform pan must be tightly wrapped with foil to prevent any water from leaking into the batter while the cake is baking.Finally, do your best to not over-bake the cake, which will make it dry and crumbly. After the allotted cooking time, it should still be a little jiggly. Worried that the cake might be undercooked at that point? Don’t be. The residual heat will continue to cook it even after you pull it out of the oven.By the way, this cheesecake also is a knockout when it’s served the usual way — cold. If you decide to go this route, run a knife around the outside edge of the cake to separate it from the pan as soon as you remove the cake from the oven. This will allow the cake to remain intact as it shrinks in on itself, rather than cracking down the middle as it vainly attempts to unglue itself from the sides of the pan.If you do indeed decide to serve this cold, you need to be more patient than my daughter and let it cool completely on a rack on the counter — it’ll take three to four hours — before wrapping it tightly and popping it in the refrigerator to chill overnight. When it’s time, run a knife around the edge of the pan again, carefully remove the side of the pan, then slice the cheesecake with a knife dipped in hot water (or use unflavored dental floss). And don’t forget the crowning glory. As noted, whipped cream or ice cream are the accessories of choice.WARM PUMPKIN-BOURBON CHEESECAKEStart to finish: 2 hours (45 minutes active)Servings: 16For the crust:6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for the pan1 1/4 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs (made by pulsing about 25 cookies in a food processor until finely ground)1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar1/4 teaspoon table saltFor the filling:15-ounce can pumpkin puree3 large eggs1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar2 tablespoons heavy cream1 teaspoon vanilla extract1/4 cup bourbon, dark rum or cognac1/2 cup granulated sugar1 tablespoon cornstarch1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon1/4 teaspoon nutmeg1/2 teaspoon ground dry ginger1/2 teaspoon ground allspice1/2 teaspoon table saltThree 8-ounce packages 1/3-less-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel), room temperatureVanilla ice cream or lightly sweetened whipped cream, to serveHeat the oven to 375 F. Brush the inside of a 9-inch springform pan with melted butter.To make the crust, in a medium bowl, stir together the 6 tablespoons of butter, the gingersnap crumbs, brown sugar and salt until combined well. Pour the crumb mixture into the pan and press it evenly over the bottom of the pan. Bake on the oven’s middle shelf for 10 minutes. Transfer to a cake rack and cool for 30 minutes.Reduce the oven to 350 F.Line a mesh colander with a clean kitchen towel. Mound the pumpkin puree into the towel and set over a medium bowl. Bring the ends of the towel up and gently squeeze to remove excess water (you should be able to squeeze out about 1/4 cup of liquid). Discard the liquid. Rinse and dry the bowl, then in it mix together the pumpkin, eggs, brown sugar, cream, vanilla and bourbon. Set aside.In a large bowl, stir together the granulated sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice and salt. Add the cream cheese, then use an electric mixer on high to beat until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the pumpkin mixture to the cream cheese mixture and beat on low, just until combined.Bring a large kettle of water to a boil.Use foil to wrap the bottom and sides of the springform pan. Pour the filling into the pan. Fold a kitchen towel so it fits evenly in a roasting pan just a bit larger than the springform pan. Set the springform pan on top of the towel in the roasting pan. Working quickly, pour enough boiling water into the larger pan to come halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake the cheesecake for 65 to 70 minutes, or until it is mostly set but still slightly jiggly at the center.Spoon some of the cheesecake onto each serving plate and top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a spoonful of whipped cream.Alternatively, if serving the cheesecake cold, transfer it to a rack, run a sharp knife around the edge and let it cool completely, about 4 hours, before covering with plastic wrap. Chill. To serve, cut into slices and top each slice with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a spoonful of whipped cream.Nutrition information per serving: 290 calories; 150 calories from fat (52 percent of total calories); 17 g fat (9 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 85 mg cholesterol; 320 mg sodium; 26 g carbohydrate; 1 g fiber; 20 g sugar; 6 g protein.last_img read more

Continue reading

Marchionne: Self-driving cars could be on roads in 5 years

first_imgWINDSOR, Ontario | Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne says working with Google convinced him that self-driving technology is closer than he thought and could be on the road in five years.“I don’t find it that unsettling,” Marchionne said Friday. “I see this as having tremendous use in real life.”Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Chairman and CEO Sergio Marchionne addresses the media, Friday, May 6, 2016, in Windsor, Ontario. Fiat Chrysler and Google announced Tuesday, May 3, that they will work together to more than double the size of Google’s self-driving vehicle fleet by adding 100 Chrysler Pacifica minivans. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)FCA and Google announced a partnership earlier this week. The companies will work together to add self-driving technology to 100 Chrysler Pacifica minivans for testing purposes.This is the first time Google has worked directly with an auto company to install self-driving sensors and computers. Marchionne discussed the partnership at the production launch of the Pacifica minivan at FCA’s plant in Windsor.Some automakers have been reluctant to team up with tech companies because they want to own the technology in their cars. But Marchionne says it’s too early to say who will lead the transition to a self-driving future, so it’s smart for FCA to work with others and learn what it can.“Making unequivocal bets and precluding development with others is a very dangerous path, at least in our view,” he said.Marchionne said FCA and Google will have to work out specifics — like who owns the data in the cars — down the road.“We need to get to the stage where the car is viable before we can discuss the spoils,” he said.Marchionne said it was initially unsettling to get into Google’s self-driving test cars in California, but as they drove he felt “absolutely safe.”“You could almost feel the reasoning process that the car was going through,” he said. “It’s like watching a robot execute, and it executes well.”The experience left him feeling that self-driving cars have great potential, he said, as long as regulators establish rules for their use.last_img read more

Continue reading

REVIEW: ‘Buyer and Cellar’ go for big laughs in the basement

first_imgAURORA | There are first-world problems, and then there’s the excess of Hollywood. A riff on Barbra Streisand and the surreal excess of American icons in the comedy, “Buyer and Cellar” at the John Hand Theater takes the audience down into the basement of the super-star and also America to shine a comical light on a nation that knows no excess too excessive.The play by Jonathan Tolins is a one-man show about Alex More, a struggling California actor fired from his Disneyland job, essentially for making children cry. Broke, he then lands a job working for a mystery woman in Malibu, who turns out to be Barbra Streisand.Played by Denver actor John Hauser, Alex’s job turns out to be the sole “employee” in a shopping mall Streisand had built in the basement of her sprawling California compound.The show is a rushing-river of one-liners, quips, snips and eye-rolls that has the audience gasping for air more so than the superbly capable Hauser. This is a show built on tons and tons of funny dialogue rolling non-stop, downstage and up into the audience. Without Hauser’s timing, energy and endurance, the show would easily wither.The first of two acts is a little rough. The author has Alex confusing everyone by focusing on the play and his monologue recollection as pure fiction, dwelling on it so long as to prompt wonder whether it really is or whether the threat of a Streisand suit hinges on this oddity or whether, out of some kind of sympathy, Tolins has some kind of pity for a woman he then enjoys roasting for the two-hour rollicking ride in her basement.The second act makes up for any deficiencies earlier, and Hauser shines as the play gives shape to his many characters. He expertly suggests the diva rather than imitate her. The effect is both hugely satisfying and disappointing. The show focuses on the huge void between the world of haves and have-nots, making it a cartoon by focusing on a woman who virtually has it all, everywhere, anywhere and any time she wants, and the schlemiel who has next to nothing and knows it.Predictably, both the rich and the poor have more in common than stereotypes make room for, and wealth doesn’t in the end dictate who’s in charge of whom. Rather than revel in the meme that we all have something going for us, Tolins points out that no matter how much wealth and stuff we accumulate, we all, equally, pretty much have nothing.Since the comedy, and tension, in the show comes from Alex and Barbra toying with each other in this phantasmic basement, the subtlety makes you yearn from some hilarious Babs shtick early on. But the audience is more amused by the Alex’s gracious suggestions at the end.Hauser is dead on throughout the show as “the lady of the house,” the overlord, the swishy, breathless boyfriend and especially for a few moments as James Brolin. Less defined was Alex himself, whose lines and motivations often betrayed his same ability to become a personality instead of just a character like everyone else in the show.All that, however, doesn’t detract from Hauser’s ability to shine a light on a woman whose demand for perfection is taken to the outer limits of self-absorbed cruelty, and that fine line really isn’t very fine at all. Behind the smart quips is the reality that we both admire and despise people like Barbra’s character as a nation that has so much and just can’t ever have enough.The audience leaves uncomfortable and confident that, like Barbra’s character in “Buyer,” we are all just one coat of new paint in the foyer away from total bliss, and that’s pretty sad.Buyer and CellarPresented by Spotlight Theater Co. at the John Hand Theater 7653 E. First Place on LowryThrough Nov. 11Tickets $20-$25ThisIsSpotlight.com720-530-4596last_img read more

Continue reading

Review: By-the-numbers ‘Ocean’s 8’ covers familiar territory

first_img This image released by Warner Bros. shows, from foreground left, Sandra Bullock Sarah Paulson, Rihanna, Cate Blanchett and Awkwafina in a scene from “Ocean’s 8.” (Barry Wetcher/Warner Bros. via AP) So why not, 17 years later, fix that egregious oversight by gathering up a few Oscar and Emmy winners and nominees, a Grammy-winner and a buzzy comedienne to keep that Ocean’s franchise going and acknowledge the other half of the human population? If only “Ocean’s 8 ” was as a fresh and smart as that first one. (Hint: It’s not for lack of star charisma or talent.)Sandra Bullock anchors the cast as Debbie Ocean, the never-before-mentioned sister of George Clooney’s Danny Ocean, who has taken up the family business to varying degrees of success (we meet her in a parole hearing) and prefers to work without “hims.” ”Hers,” she later explains, can go unnoticed.And indeed, Debbie uses what could be a handicap very much to her advantage in a rollicking shoplifting spree at Bergdorf’s. It helps, of course, when you look like Sandra Bullock and you happen to have left jail in full hair, makeup and cocktail dress. But it’s still quite a bit of fun seeing her act the part of a wealthy and entitled shopper who tries to demand a refund for the items she’s literally just pinched from their shelves. 90 percent of her method is simply looking like she belongs and taking advantage of the privileges that affords her.Don’t expect this level of class or gender commentary from the rest of the film, however. “Ocean’s 8” suffers from a bit of tonal whiplash. Half the time it seems to be veering into grotesque “Sex and the City” worship of brands and celebrity.Debbie’s plan is to steal a $150 million diamond necklace. In order to do so, she and her assembled team of savants have to first infiltrate the orbit of a vapid celeb, Daphne Kluger (Anne Hathaway), and convince her to wear said necklace to the Met Gala, where they’ll steal it and divide the earnings accordingly (a cool $16.5 million each).The team includes Lou (Cate Blanchett), who dresses like a glam rocker and spends her time watering down well vodka for profit; Rose Weil (Helena Bonham Carter), a kooky past-her-prime fashion designer desperate for a comeback; a jeweler in a rut, Amita (Mindy Kaling); Nine Ball (Rihanna), a hacker in dreadlocks; Constance (Awkwafina), a pickpocket; and Tammy (Sarah Paulson), a suburban mom who can’t quite quit her white collar crime ways.While Blanchett and Bullock are predictably solid in their roles and get at least a few memorable moments of worthy banter, it’s Hathaway who really steals the film with a wickedly on-point satiric turn a spoiled star. It is Hathaway’s Miranda Priestly moment, and could have only been made better had she gone full-meta and played a character named “Anne Hathaway.”The celebrity skewering is first-rate, but, for the most part, if you’ve seen Soderbergh’s “Ocean’s Eleven,” you’ve basically seen “Ocean’s 8” too. Director and co-writer Gary Ross (“The Hunger Games”) follows familiar story beats and attempts, unsuccessfully, to ape Soderbergh’s filmmaking style. And his glimpse inside the Met Gala makes that famously glamorous event look awfully pedestrian.It also doesn’t help that the stakes never seem all that real in “Ocean’s 8,”and when they do finally get an adversary, in a detective played by James Corden, it’s more for laughs.There was a danger to “Ocean’s Eleven” and a thrill in seeing that team succeed. Here, none of the women seem to have any fallibility at all, and you never find yourself doubting whether or not they can pull it off. Perhaps there is something subversive to the idea that all Debbie has to do is social shame two security guys from entering a women’s restroom, but we’re there for a something more elaborate too.That’s kind of the overall problem of “Ocean’s 8.” It’s all predicated on the fact that women are often underestimated. But in making that point, it’s also somehow underestimated the audience who still should be entitled to a smart, fun heist, no matter who is pulling it off.“Ocean’s 8,” a Warner Bros. release, is rated PG-13 by the Motion Picture Association of America for “language, drug use, and some suggestive content.” Running time: 110 minutes. Two and a half stars out of four.MPAA Definition of PG-13: Parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.Follow AP Film Writer Lindsey Bahr on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ldbahr This image released by Warner Bros. shows Cate Blanchett, from left, Helena Bonham Carter and Sandra Bullock in a scene from “Ocean’s 8.” (Barry Wetcher/Warner Bros. via AP) 1 of 4 This image released by Warner Bros. shows Sarah Paulson, from left, Sandra Bullock and Rihanna in a scene from “Ocean’s 8.” (Barry Wetcher/Warner Bros. via AP) This image released by Warner Bros. shows Anne Hathaway, left, and Helena Bonham Carter in a scene from “Ocean’s 8.” (Barry Wetcher/Warner Bros. via AP) Steven Soderbergh’s “Ocean’s Eleven” remake is a hard movie to live up to. Its starry charm was backed by a breezy and deceptively dense script full of memorable characters, dizzyingly complex logistics and lively filmmaking that Soderbergh himself couldn’t even recreate in the two sequels. But it is undeniable that even the near-perfect “Eleven” was missing something pretty major: Women. You know, besides Julia Roberts, that blackjack dealer and the one exotic dancer.last_img read more

Continue reading

CODE ORANGE: Aurora teams work to squash the competition at annual…

first_img The 18th annual Punkin Chunkin event will be going off this weekend on Monday Oct. 05, 2015 at Arapahoe Park.Photo by Gabriel Christus/Aurora Sentinel 1 of 5 Contestants will use white lumina pumpkins for the 18th annual Punkin Chunkin event this weekend on Monday Oct. 05, 2015 at Arapahoe Park.Photo by Gabriel Christus/Aurora Sentinel Inertia is powered by a car engine for the 18th annual Punkin Chunkin event will be going off this weekend on Monday Oct. 05, 2015 at Arapahoe Park.Photo by Gabriel Christus/Aurora Sentinel Air cannons like The Big 10 Inch can shoot pumpkins over 4,000 feet on Monday Oct. 05, 2015 at Arapahoe Park.Photo by Gabriel Christus/Aurora Sentinel Bobby Cox pit boss for the 18th annual Punkin Chunkin event walks the grounds on Monday Oct. 05, 2015 at Arapahoe Park. Photo by Gabriel Christus/Aurora Sentinel In October, the leaves change, and somewhere on eastern Aurora plains, a pumpkin is launched 500 miles-per-hour into stormy skies.The first day of Punkin Chunkin’ 2018 provided no disappointment.Each October, teams gather at Arapahoe Park Racetrack with the intent of launching a pumpkin farther than ever before with their pressure cannons and catapults, trebuchets, and centrifugal-force machines.Some are 50 feet tall, and most are no joke.On Saturday, a few thousand folks slowly filled bleachers with hands full of beer and foot-long bratwurst hotdogs to watch the pumpkins fly.Across a partition stood four enormous compression cannons, 16 catapults, and a hundred weirdos in hardhats pouring their hearts and souls into the competition.One Colorado-based team, The Big Ten Inch, has long held the world record for the farthest distance to fire a pumpkin: 5,545.2 feet, over a mile.The crowd roared as The Big Ten Inch prepared to launch its second pumpkin of the day. The greenish ordnance was loaded into a pressure chamber and prepared for its final journey from the 100-foot-long barrel.People rowdily cheered and counted down with the emcee.Then the barrel roared like a jet engine. The pumpkin is launched at such a velocity it’s barely a blur as it soars 1,500 feet into the air before disappearing into a cloud, still climbing. The barrel smoked, and the crowd cheered.But The Big 10 Inch team were disappointed with the day’s results. Cold weather (increasing drag) and altitudinal winds (blowing head-on, from the south) were limiting their distance to under 4,000 feet – and they came to beat their old record.“Go big or go home,” said Ralph Eschborn Jr., the team leader. He’s an engineer originally from Pennsylvania. Eschborn said he originally got into chunkin’ punkins back East, when he and some friends heard that farmers in rural Delaware had started a pumpkin-launching contest.“We figured they were just farmers,” said Eschborn. “But they opened a can of whoop-ass on us.”Eschborn and his buddies went back to the drawing board. The next year, they won.The punkin chunkin’ scene continued to grow in the 90s to the point where contests were expanded across the country to states like Colorado.This year there are three divisions: compressed cannons like The Big Ten Inch; trebuchets, which are massive catapults launched by counterweights; and centrifugal-force machines, powered by a big spinning wheel. Only one team competed in the last category, but couldn’t launch for safety concerns.Those concerns aren’t unfounded. According to several chunkers, a trebuchet launched a pumpkin backwards two years ago, traveling clear over a building where it smashed next to a cop car. Some years ago, a pumpkin was rumored to have exploded through a sub-division carport like an artillery shell.Two years ago in Delaware, where it all began, a giant chunk of metal blew off of a compression cannon and struck a reporter in the head. She was originally reported dead but survived.The sheer power of the sport is what attracts chunkers like Jeff Hatch, a former explosive ordnance disposal specialist with the US military, who is now embedded with the “Stratocaster” compression cannon team.He said his vehicle hit an IED in Afghanistan, leaving him discharged and disabled.“I really like to blow stuff up, but I can’t do that anymore,” Hatch said. “So I do this.”His team member, Leilani Kirsch, said she first heard about punkin chunkin’ on an early date with a Stratocaster team member.“I had no idea what it was,” Kirsch said. “I was thinking, ‘Yeah right, there’s no way you launch a thirty-foot cannon. But if you do, I gotta shoot it.’”Eventually she was caught hook, line and sinker by the sport. She even bought an old fire truck in San Diego and drove it out to transport the Stratocaster, which is painted like the Death Star.A cold head-wind picked up before the third and final round of the day, blowing over banners and fold-up chairs. Not an ideal day for punkin chunkin’, but nevertheless, the crowd in the bleachers grew.Back at The Big Ten Inch, Ralph Eschborn Jr. said he wouldn’t mind losing this year.“We’ll let these guys have it,” he said, grinning and gesturing to the three other compressed-cannon contraptions. “And then we’ll be back.”last_img read more

Continue reading

Review: Teen angst hits the Old West, in D’Onofrio’s ‘Kid’

first_img1 of 3 This image released by Lionsgate shows Leila George and Jake Schur in a scene from “The Kid.” (Lionsgate via AP) This image released by Lionsgate shows Dane DeHaan, left, and Ethan Hawke in a scene from “The Kid.” (Lionsgate via AP) “There’s no such thing as the West anymore.” That’s actually not a line from “The Kid,” Vincent D’Onofrio’s new coming-of-age Western starring Ethan Hawke, Dane DeHaan and Chris Pratt. It’s from Sam Shepard’s play “True West,” currently on Broadway — and also starring Hawke.In fact, can we talk about Hawke for a minute? The veteran actor is having quite the run these days, on screen and stage. Many feel he was unconscionably robbed of an Oscar nod for “First Reformed,” and he’s delivering a superb performance in “True West.” He’s also the most substantial reason to see “The Kid,” a nice idea that is, alas, thinly executed.The “kid” in the title is not, actually, Billy the Kid, the renowned outlaw whose story loosely inspires the film. It’s a 13-year-old kid named Rio (Jake Schur), who, as we begin, witnesses his mother being beaten to death by his evil father. Rio manages to shoot and kill his dad — only to face the wrath of his vengeful uncle (Chris Pratt, in true villain mode). Rio and his older sister, Sara (Leila George) just barely escape into the night.On the run, with only the vague plan of finding their mother’s friend in Santa Fe (the action is in late 19th-century New Mexico), the pair take refuge in an abandoned shack, where they run smack into Billy (DeHaan) and his companions. Billy’s on the run, his pursuer none other than Pat Garrett (Hawke), the new sheriff in Lincoln County, a gruff but philosophical law-and-order man whose mission is to bring Billy to justice.When Garrett and his men quickly find and capture Billy, Rio and his sister — lying about the reason for their journey — hitch a ride with the group to Santa Fe. Along the way, Rio comes to admire Billy, portrayed by DeHaan as roguish and charming, and even helps him try to break free. Arriving in Santa Fe, Rio and Sara immediately run off — straight into a trap laid by evil Uncle Grant, who kidnaps Sara and warns Rio that if he pursues them, both siblings will die.Now Rio needs to make a choice: who’s more likely to help him rescue Sara, the charismatic outlaw or the upstanding sheriff? More profoundly, will Rio become a bad good guy or a good guy?The teen becomes fast friends with Billy, but if you know your history, you’ll know that Billy, also named William H. Bonney, did not eventually die of natural causes (though in this depiction of the West, death by bullet does seem to be the natural order of things.)In any case, Schur (son of producer Jordan Schur) has a sweet, soulful face but the script gives him little depth to work with. The character of Sara fares even worse; women in this world seem to exist solely to be a) pretty, b) wronged, and c) rescued.As for Billy and Pat Garrett, both roles have been played by dozens of actors over the years. DeHaan gives Billy an appealingly impish spin, though he seems a bit old for the part. Pratt, covered with facial hair, revels in evil vibes. Hawke takes a fairly one-dimensional character and gives it an intelligent and shaded performance. It’s worth noting that this isn’t the team’s first, er, rodeo: Hawke, Pratt and D’Onofrio appeared together in the 2016 Western “The Magnificent Seven.”“Let’s see what you do next, kid,” Hawke’s Garrett tells Rio at one point, but honestly, we’re more curious about Hawke’s next move at a fertile moment in his career. Check out “The Kid” for some pleasant entertainment, but if you really want to see this actor firing on all cylinders, giddy-up to Broadway before “True West” closes March 17.“The Kid,” a Lionsgate release, is rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America “for violence and language.” Running time: 99 minutes. Two stars out of four.MPAA definition of R: Restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult.Follow Jocelyn Noveck on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/JocelynNoveckAP This image released by Lionsgate shows Chris Pratt, left, and Ethan Hawke in a scene from “The Kid.” (Lionsgate via AP)last_img read more

Continue reading

Khun Wichai’s big day – another ‘Ace’

first_imgThe only disappointment is that his feat will be almost ignored by the Green Valley as he paid his green fee in cash and the hole sponsor would only recognise payment by the company’s credit card.  However PGS and IPGC are far more generous with a new inscribed golf bag awaiting the popular Thai golfer.  Well done Wichai!Grimes & greens decisiveFor golfers there is nothing quite like having a “new” venue to play and the redeveloped course at Pattavia certainly fits the bill in that respect, especially now the new clubhouse is open and functional.  Little wonder then that it was on the schedule for the Pattaya Golf Society on Wednesday, 17th March.The course itself is in good condition with greens which may be the most difficult to read in the area because of the nature of the grain and the bunkers are also in good condition, were one to stray.The field was divided into two flights at fourteen and under and in the top flight Rick Schramm, David Thomas and Dave Moriarty all shared second place with 30 points each, three behind the flight winner Takeshi Hakozaki, on 33.  In the second flight Larry Slattery was third with 31 points, close on the heels of second placed golfer Dave Plaiter with 32 points.  The winner with the best score of the day was Ken Grimes with 34 points.John Chelo and fellow Canadian Rick Schramm both shared the ‘2’s pot and Jack Robertson took the Booby Bevy for being the only Canuck in the field not to record a birdie.Kevin Cumming took the Elephant Bar consolation beer as an appropriate yet lucky non-winner and David Thomas, running the day, warmly thanked all who had contributed to the day, including drivers and mine hosts of the Elephant Bar in Soi Buakhao, Peter, Shane and Khun Kob.  Pattavia?  Yes we’ll certainly have some more of that!Stern test at Mountain Shadow The Pattaya Golf Society ended the week on Friday, 21st March with a visit to Mountain Shadow to play a stableford competition on the testing course.  The course was in fine condition with plenty of run on the fairways and greens which lived up to their reputation as tough and grainy.The field played from blues and whites in two flights, cut at seventeen and under.  In the second flight senior Aussie golfer Bryan Brown played solidly again to share second place with Masashi Iizumi on 32 points whilst Peter Allen used his length to shackle the course with 34 points for the win.  In the blue flight Greg Gawron and John Chelo shared second place with 33 points but were nosed out by Dave Moriarty, “Mr Consistency” indeed, with 34 points.Rick Schramm again recorded a birdie ‘2’ on the eighth to share the bonus pot with Peter Allen who also excelled with a fine birdie on the tough seventeenth.Rod Stevens enjoyed the consolation beer whilst the Booby Bevy went to Syd Harrison as a farewell gesture prior to his departure to the UK for the summer, as another excellent golfing week drew to a close at the Elephant Bar in Soi Buakhao. The Pattaya Golf Society (IPGC) at the Elephant BarThe Pattaya Golf Society travelled to Green Valley on Monday, 17th March to play a stableford competition in two divisions with the cut set at seventeen and under.  With a course in excellent condition, white tees set well back, a fresh breeze blowing and quick greens the scene was set for something special.Scores were unspectacular with Murray Edwards recording 34 points for third in the second flight, one behind lady golfer Orawan Meeraka’s second place 35 and a further shot back from the winner Jim Ferris, returning a level par 36 points for the win.  In the top flight Rob Lamond joined Peter Ditz and Wichai Tananusorn on 33 points to share the win whilst Peter and Wichai recorded birdie ‘2’s on the fourth hole.Khun Wichai went one better than that with a quality ace on the twelfth hole to give him his second career hole-in-one. This one was vintage, with a wedge shot landing just behind the pin and dragging back unerringly into the hole.  Wonderful Wichai and thanks for the celebratory bell ringing back at the Elephant Bar in Soi Buakhao.last_img read more

Continue reading

Tseng wins 2011 LPGA Thailand by 5 shots

first_imgTseng led by one stroke over Wie and I.K. Kim of South Korea going into the final round at the immaculate Siam Country Club Old Course and had the lowest score of the day with six birdies in her first 13 holes before her first-and-only blemish of the day at 14, where she made bogey.  She rebounded with a birdie at 15 and never looked back, claiming her sixth-career LPGA Tour victory at 15-under-par 273.Wie had to settle for a 70 to finish second, while Kim was another shot back in a tie for third with Karrie Webb.“I just tried my best and I know I had lots of confidence,” Tseng said about winning three weeks in a row.  “But with all the great golfers out here, you never know until the last putt drops in.”First round leader Kim birdied three of her first six holes to sit tied for the lead with Tseng, and was at 13 under after a birdie on the 13th.  However, she made a quintuple bogey on the 17th including five chips from the back of the green to fall out of contention, before finishing with a birdie on the last to secure a tie for third.Wie also put pressure on Tseng by chipping in for a birdie on the first hole and picking up two more shots on the sixth and seventh.  But she didn’t make another birdie the rest of the way and was already four shots behind Tseng when she bogeyed the 17th.Carrie Webb bogeyed four of her first five holes in the final round but bounced back on the inward nine holes to finish with a 69, while Paula Creamer of the United States shot a 71 to finish in fifth on 8-under.With the win, Tseng earns $217,500 and an early lead on the LPGA Official Money List and Rolex Player of the Year race.  (Source LPGA)Tseng strikes an iron into the green during her final round.Michelle Wie celebrates after birdying the first hole.I.K. Kim of South Korea faces a meltdown on the 17th hole where she made a quintuple bogey 9 to fall out of contention.Huge crowds gather around the 18th green as the final pairing prepare to putt out. Top-ranked Yani Tseng shot a 6-under-par 66 on Sunday to win the season-opening Honda LPGA Thailand by five shots over Michelle Wie at Pattaya’s Siam Country Club. The 22-year-old began her 2011 season with victories on the Ladies European Tour at the Australian Open and Australian Ladies Masters in consecutive weeks prior to last week’s LPGA season opener.  She has now teed it up four times in 2011, including a small professional event in Taiwan, with four victories.Yani Tseng of Taiwan holds up the 2011 Honda LPGA Thailand champion’s trophy after shooting a final round 66 to win the tournament by 5 shots.last_img read more

Continue reading

Greig continues winning habit

first_imgFriday, Jan.13, The Emerald (white tees) – StablefordA Flight (0-16.8)1st Les Cobban (8) 33pts2nd Stuart Tinkler (14) 32pts3rd Tony Robbins (17) 30pts B Flight (16.9+)1st Gerry Cooney (17) 37pts2nd Neil Griffen (24) 33pts3rd Frank Quinlan (35) 32ptsNear Pins: Robby Watts, Trevor Priestly, Mike Brett, Eddy Kelly.“Now is the winter of our discontent”, this was certainly the case for twenty-four Bunker Boys today who attended the Emerald course.  Not only were green fees higher than most courses in the Pattaya area, the marshal put out several groups more than were booked from another society and a further group of two players before the Bunker Boys, thereby delaying our tee off time significantly and causing chaos on the course with several groups waiting at every tee box.  Five hours and thirty minutes to play a round of golf is not acceptable by any measure and the course management need to take a good hard look at their policies if they wish to retain local societies.The problem was compounded by the total absence of the marshal on the course to push along slow groups.  To add insult to injury a heavy downpour on the front-nine drenched everybody adding to the misery.Most players lost interest in the game early in the round and this was reflected in the low scores returned.  Only Gerry Cooney rose above the rest with a very respectable 37pts while the remainder of players in the winners’ circle scored in the low thirties. Despite the weather, the course was in good order with the exception of some bunkers that had not been raked for a while and caddies had made no attempt to cover footprints.  Play got underway ten minutes early and there were few if any delays.Having recorded two victories the previous week, Colin Greig continued on his merry way with another first place finish.  It seems that the Greig household’s trophy cabinet has still some spaces left to fill!  Keith Norman came a close second on 36pts and Neil Carter third a further stroke back.Stuart Tinkler decided to be a good golf citizen and look for his playing partner’s ball in the rough, however, he beat a hasty retreat with the appearance of an angry looking snake.Playing numbers are down this year compared to previous years.  There may be many reasons for this, poor exchange rates etc., and some of our more senior members have either have passed on, or through ill-health or age have lost the ability or desire to play.Wednesday, Jan. 11, Greenwood (white tees) – Stableford1st Michael Brett (18) 39pts2nd Greg Berry (15) 37pts3rd Ken Elmore (22) 37ptsNear Pins: Ken Elmore, Stuart Tinkler (3).On a grey, overcast morning in Pattaya with the real prospect of rain, nineteen golfers assembled at the M Club for the trip to the Greenwood Course.  To the amazement of everybody, the normally sartorially splendid Andy Brady arrived at the club sans socks, however at the course he managed to find in his kit bag a pair of elegant green socks for play.Carts were not allowed on the course due to recent rain so the ‘lift, clean and place’ rule was applied.  Play commenced on time and progressed without many hold-ups, except for a heavy shower lasting about ten minutes midway through the front nine.  The course played long due to the absence of any run on the fairways and the greens were slow as expected.Near pins are normally shared around, however, today the mercurial Stuart Tinkler bagged three with the remaining pin going to the soon to depart Ken Elmore.  Ken continued his recent run of good form taking third place after losing a count back with 37pts to Greg Berry, the latter having the better last 6 holes.  First place went to the ever-consistent Michael Brett with 39pts.Having had a few games under his belt Richard Baldotto is now finding some good form so expect to see him in the winners’ circle soon.center_img Bunker Boys Golf SocietyMonday, Jan 9, Mt. Shadow (blue tees) – Stableford1st Colin Greig (9) 37pts2nd Keith Norman (13) 36pts3rd Neil Carter (14) 35ptsNear Pins: Michael Brett, Stuart Tinkler, Mashi Keneta, Colin Greig.Monday morning in Pattaya dawned with grey overcast skies and the threat of rain.  This may have accounted for the low number of players assembled at the M Club for the first game of a new week.  Undaunted, fifteen keen golfers made their way up motorway 7 to the Mountain Shadow venue for our 11.00 tee off time.  This is a course that provides a stern examination of any players golfing ability, course management skills, and overall golfing temperament.Gerry Cooney.last_img read more

Continue reading