In Hollywood, studios are always crunching numbers at the box office. And the popular X-Men series is back in movie theaters. "The Wolverine" stars actor Hugh Jackman playing the superhuman role for the sixth time. Los Angeles Times and MORNING EDITION film critic Kenneth Turan has this review.
Nate Silver received acclaim last year by closely predicting the outcome of the presidential election through exhaustive statistical analysis of polling data. He also drew a lot of traffic to The New York Times' website with his FiveThirtyEight blog. Silver has decided to leave the Times and join ESPN and ABC News to put his statistical approach to work analyzing politics, as well as his first love of sports and other topics. David Greene speaks with Silver about his plans and the role of statistical analysis in reporting.
William Roman wants to borrow money, but his bank won't lend him any more. So he's turning to his local pawn shop.
For Roman, a loan from the pawn shop is a lot easier to get. He doesn't have to fill out an application. The people at the pawn shop don't check his credit — all they want is something valuable, something they call sell if Roman doesn't pay them back.
"I've pawned laptops, PlayStations," says Roman. "If I'm not using it, then I'll just go and pawn it."
There's no shortage of R-rated male buddy comedies, but this summer's raunchy flick — complete with drinking, sex and swimming pools — isn't one of them. TheTo Do List, written and directed by Maggie Carey and starring Aubrey Plaza, chronicles the coming-of-age, sexual escapades of a teenage girl.
From madness to seizures, to crime and lack of sleep, people have long blamed the full moon for a range of problems. Research, on the other hand, has found little evidence over the years to support these anecdotal accounts of the moon's powers over the human body and brain.
But scientists in Switzerland decided to look again at one of those putative effects — disturbed sleep — and were surprised to see there might be something to the claim after all.
Makis Anagnostou, a worker and union leader, bottles lavender-scented fabric softener at VIO.ME, a former tile materials factory that went bust and has been revived by its staff as a collective making environmentally-friendly detergent.
Credit Joanna Kakissis/NPR
Empty bottles that will hold fabric softener made with vinegar and lavender.
The financial crisis in Greece has devastated the country's manufacturing sector, which has lost more than 30 percent of its jobs in the past three years. But at one factory in an industrial center in the north, workers have taken matters into their own hands.
Inside the cavernous factory on the outskirts of Thessaloniki, eight middle-aged men are filling bottles with a vinegar-based fabric softener that's scented with fresh lavender.
Attorney General Eric Holder says the Justice Department will ask a federal court to subject Texas to the same kind of scrutiny that was required of it by a section of the Voting Rights Act struck down last month by the Supreme Court.
In Shelby County v. Holder, the high court rescinded Section 5 of the 1965 act, which required several states including Texas that had a history of voter discrimination to get "pre-clearance" from the federal government before changing their election laws.
In an interview with ABC News, the only minority in the all-female jury that acquitted George Zimmerman with the killing of Trayvon Martin said Zimmerman "got away with murder."
"You can't put the man in jail even though in our hearts we felt he was guilty," said Juror B29, who identified herself as Maddy. "But we had to grab our hearts and put it aside and look at the evidence."
The 36-year-old mother of eight is Puerto Rican and had recently moved to Sanford from Chicago.
Come summertime, some of us here at Shots are reminded, as we lounge on decks and venture into overgrown gardens, that we are irresistible to mosquitoes. As we gripe about our itchy, pocked limbs, we can't help but wonder just why they unfailingly devour us and pass over our friends and loved ones. And when it comes to repellent, it's hard to tell just what works best.
It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.
It's been more than four years since Israelis and Palestinians held direct peace talks. Today, Israeli officials said talks will resume next week in Washington. The State Department will not confirm that date, but a spokesperson said Secretary of State John Kerry expects negotiations to begin soon.
NPR's Jackie Northam has this story about the opportunity and the obstacles.
The world's first Latin American and Jesuit pope toured Rio de Janeiro's slums on Thursday, blasting the world's "culture of selfishness" and telling Brazilians not to be discouraged, even in the face of corruption by officials. His trip comes after widespread protests over inequality in Brazil.
Jasmine, once a wealthy Manhattan socialite, comes to us a jabbering wreck in Woody Allen's Blue Jasmine.We meet her staggering off a plane in San Francisco to stay with her down-market sister Ginger (Sally Hawkins).
The bottom has fallen out of Jasmine's glamorous world, in which she oozed style and made the trains run on time for her husband, Hal (Alec Baldwin), a financier who gave lavishly to charity with others' money. The name Madoff never comes up, but Hal went to jail, Jasmine is left with mountains of debt, and it's not hard to do the math.
Gary is a serial entrepreneur who launched Match.com, the online dating service, in 1993. A host of other online matchmaking personals companies have hatched as a result of Gary's innovation. Gary also registered a number of lucrative domain names in the early days of the internet including housing.com, jobs.com, and autos.com.
North Carolina could become the first state to compensate people who were forcibly sterilized in programs across the country that began during the Great Depression and continued for decades, targeting individuals deemed feeble-minded or otherwise unfit.
In a proposed budget, lawmakers have set aside $10 million for one-time payments to an estimated 1,500 people still alive who were part of a state program that sterilized 7,600 men, women and children from 1929 to 1974. The amount of each payout would be determined by how many people came forward.
When it is discovered that Timmy Choi (Louis Koo) has been manufacturing meth, he's sentenced to death and put in the custody of Capt. Zhang. His only shot at redemption? Helping Zhang shut down his cartel.
Hong Kong action-crime maestro Johnnie To makes films about good and evil, but he's not in the habit of neatly distinguishing the two. So he might seem at a disadvantage in mainland China, where the censors don't tolerate moral ambiguity. With the canny Drug War, however, the director proves himself entirely up to the challenge.
Pope Francis speaks during a gathering with Argentine youths at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Rio de Janeiro, on Thrusday. Pope Francis urged young Brazilians not to despair in the battle against corruption Thursday as he addressed their country's political problems in the wake of massive protests.
Credit Nelson Almeida / AFP/Getty Images
Francis waves to the crowd while riding in the Popemobile as he tours the Varghina favela in Rio de Janeiro.
Credit Mario Tama / Getty Images
The pope blesses a child in the favela.
Credit Antonio Lacerda / EPA /LANDOV
Thousands of young people gather at Rio de Janeiro's iconic Copacabana beachfront to welcome Pope Francis to World Youth Day ceremonies. On the fourth day of his visit to Brazil, Francis waded into the country's ramshackle slums and onto the national battle over poverty and corruption.
Credit Christophe Simon / AFP/Getty Images
Pope Francis speaks to youths at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Rio de Janeiro on Thursday. He urged them not to despair as he addressed Brazil's political problems in the wake of massive protests. The pope is in Brazil for his first foreign trip since he became leader of the Catholic Church.
Credit Nelson Almeida / AFP/Getty Images
Pilgrims from Argentina watch as Francis speaks in the Varghina favela. More than 1.5 million pilgrims are expected to join the pope during his visit for World Youth Day celebrations.
Credit Mario Tama / Getty Images
Francis walks through the Varginha favela. The community of 1,000 people was under the sway of narcotraffickers until it came under police control less than a year ago.
During the fourth day of his first foreign visit, Pope Francis headed to the Varginha favela in Rio de Janeiro.
As NPR's Lourdes Garcia Navarro described it to our Newscast unit, the shantytown was not prettied up for the pope. Its river remained clogged with sewage and dirt, and the houses were still slapped together.
"It's an extremely poor community," Lourdes said. "I think the pope wanted to come here to highlight his very personal message of affinity with the poor."
It can be frustrating when you can't find something you need – like the keys you thought were in your pants pocket but seem to have vaporized.
While we can't help you locate your keys, the NPR Services staff is here to help listeners find answers to all kinds of questions related to NPR. And those questions that fall outside the realm of public radio, well, sometimes they catch our eye too.
Such is the case with this particular listener letter - who could resist doing a little investigating to learn more about something called a Sha-Poopie?
Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 11:24 am
Phillip Agnew was blindsided by the verdict in the George Zimmerman trial. The decision came down late on a Saturday night. Agnew was expecting the neighborhood watchman who killed Trayvon Martin to be found guilty.
Agnew, 28, leads a group of young activists called the Dream Defenders, which formed in Florida last year in the weeks following Trayvon's shooting death. It was one of the many groups that sprouted up in cities across the country in response to the shooting.