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Wednesday, April 17,2013

League of extraordinary gentleman

Jackie Robinson biopic a powerful, bittersweet victory

by ALLAN I. ROSS
The first time we see Jackie Robinson in the biopic "42," he's in silhouette, crouched like a tiger, leading off about 10 feet from first base at a Negro League night game. The pitcher winds up, throws one over the plate, and Robinson (Chadwick Boseman) breaks into a loping sprint.
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Wednesday, April 17,2013

New in town

Maru Sushi & Grill

by ALLAN I. ROSS
Maru Sushi & Grill opened in its new East Lansing location this week. This is the third restaurant for owner/operator Robert Song's 4-year-old enterprise, following Maru's expansion in Grand Rapids last summer and the original restaurant in Okemos. At 2,800 square feet and with a seating capacity of 86, it's also the largest.
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Wednesday, April 17,2013

Return of the mac

Old Town barbecue eatery wins with comfort food staple

by ALLAN I. ROSS
In 1993, Canadian pop rockers Barenaked Ladies released their signature song, "If I Had $1000000 Dollars," which included the cute (but bizarre) segment: "If I had a million dollars/we wouldn't have to eat Kraft dinners/But we WOULD eat Kraft dinners, we'd just eat more …" In concert, this prompts audience members to hurl packages of macaroni and cheese at the stage, but crowd antics this sentimental contain a truism for a generation raised on boxed meals.
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Wednesday, April 17,2013

Faking it big

Musical hits the right notes, but lacks crackle

by ALLAN I. ROSS
The two best things about Steven Spielberg's 2002 film, "Catch Me If You Can," featuring a slippery counterfeiter and his relentless pursuer, were the Saul Bass-inspired opening credits and Tom Hanks' R-rated knock-knock joke. Guess what — neither of them made it into the musical adaptation, playing this week at the Wharton Center.
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Wednesday, April 10,2013

Better than air

'American Idiot' a soaring triumph

by ALLAN I. ROSS
A post-ironic pop-punk opera about the futility of rebellion, "American Idiot" is challenging. It's exciting. It's inciting. It's triumphant.
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Wednesday, April 10,2013

And the winners are ...

by ALLAN I. ROSS
After last year's particularly nasty presidential campaign, Lansing voters got about a two-month reprieve before being thrust back into the heart of another election season. Sorry about that, but also, you're welcome.
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Wednesday, April 10,2013

Victory by numbers

Sometimes the nomination is better than the win

by ALLAN I. ROSS
It's not always about who won or lost, but who got the most votes. Not so fast — winning and getting the most votes are not necessarily the same thing, smart guy. At least not in the new Top of the Town two-round voting system.
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Wednesday, April 10,2013

New in town

Old Town General Store

by ALLAN I. ROSS
Old Town's going old school in a few weeks when the Old Town General Store gets up and running. Owner/operator Maria Van Atta will soon launch her debut solo enterprise next to Preuss Pets, near the corner of Grand River Avenue and Cedar Street.
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Wednesday, April 3,2013

The kids are all Reich

Australian drama gives the Holocaust a new set of victims: Nazi children

by ALLAN I. ROSS
Nazis are easy narrative villains — the systematic slaughter of 11 million people really puts them in their own class of evil. Consequently, in literature and film, it's a bold move to depict them as anything less than cold-blooded monsters.
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Wednesday, April 3,2013

New in town

Jonna's 2 Go & Portable Feast and Friends

by ALLAN I. ROSS
The "gateway to East Lansing" is getting a little more welcoming this week with the opening of Jonna's 2 Go, the western-most location for a series of southeast Michigan-based convenience stores.
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