X marks the spot
The Southside Film Festival (SSFF) is underway.
You may have seen those posters with the big red "X" on them.
The X isn't for the MPAA ratings of the films being shown at the SSFF.
Rather, X is the roman numeral 10, as in the SSFF 10th anniversary.
The X also marks the spot, or screening locations, for more than 57 films, through June 15, Broughal Middle School auditorium, Victory Fire House, Lehigh University Sinclair Lab Auditorium and Godfrey Daniels, all south side Bethlehem.
There's not a lot of magic in "Now You See Me," even though the film's milieu is prestidigitation.
There are digital special effects aplenty the kind of cinematic magic we expect in sci-fi, fantasy and action films.
The special effects cannot distract from a weak screenplay with half-baked plot and lack of character development.
"Now You See Me" inadvertently proves a motto said in the film by one of the magicians: "The closer you look, the less you see."
The animated family feature movie,"Epic," is beautiful, especially in the 3D format in which it was seen for this review.
Unfortunately, "Epic" lacks a cohesive storyline, the clever dialogue we've grown accustomed to in animated features and memorable animated characters.
That's not good. The art form is, after all, about character animation.
Moreover, the concept for "Epic" is ill-conceived.
The long languishing Riverside Drive project has been given a new lease on life in eastern Salisbury Township.
The township board of commissioners voted unanimously 5-0 to approve an extension letter for the St. Luke's University Health Network Preliminary-Final Subdivision Plan for the Riverside Drive access road.
"The project is still alive," Atty. Steven T. Boell of Fitzpatrick Lentz & Bubba P.C., the law firm representing St. Luke's, told commissioners prior to the May 9 commissioners' vote.
The Salisbury Township Planning Commission learned about progress on the updating of the Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance and Zoning Ordinance at the May 14 meeting.
Charlie Schmehl, vice president, Urban Research and Development Corp., township consultant for the SALDO and zoning ordinance update and comprehensive plan, addressed planners and township officials.
A new draft of the zoning ordinance was to have been delivered May 16 to township officials for review.
"Star Trek Into Darkness" is that all-too-often rare sci-fi movie that has spectacular special effects, a screenplay with an actual storyline, character development and surprise plot turns.
J. J. Abrams ("Star Trek," 2009; TV's "Aliens," "Lost"), directs a screenplay by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman ("Transformers," 2007, 2009; "Star Trek," 2009) and Damon Lindelof ("World War Z," "Prometheus," "Cowboys & Aliens," TV's "Lost") that mixes action set pieces and character-driven scenes.
The plan for a long-term facility for the elderly to be built near Lehigh Street in western Salisbury Township has again been tabled by the Salisbury Township Planning Commission, but more aspects of it have been approved.
Planners voted 7-0 to table the plan, which is expected to be discussed again at the 7:30 p.m. June 11 meeting in the township Municipal Building, 2900 S. Pike Avenue.
Planners also voted 7-0 at the May 14 meeting to approve the plan as a preliminary plan, but not as a combined preliminary-final plan.
Salisbury Township commissioners were introduced recently to a new program working in the township "to prevent adolescent problem behavior and promote positive youth development."
Denise Continenza is Lehigh County coordinator for the program, Communities That Care (CTC), run by Penn State Extension where Continenza is an extension educator.
Continenza described herself as the "mobilizer for the project" at the May 9 township board of commissioners meeting, when she spoke.
"I love working in Salisbury," Continenza said.
Most of us have read "The Great Gatsby," or are familiar with F. Scott Fitzgerald's 1925 book, esteemed by many literary experts as "The Great American Novel."
Several versions of "Gatsby" have made it to the big and small screen, including a 1926 silent film disparaged by none other than Zelda and F. Scott, and a 1974 movie starring Robert Redford as Jay Gatsby.
At least six teens relocated by the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) are now being housed at KidsPeace Broadway Campus.
And, following a May 8 meeting with KidsPeace officials, Salisbury Township officials apparently have gotten the answers they sought and expressed confidence in the program during a discussion at the May 9 township board of commissioners' meeting.
KidsPeace has received a $3.5-million grant through ORR to house some of the refugee children allegedly caught at the Mexican border attempting to cross into the United States.