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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

A Stoner Film Goes Up In Smoke In 'American Ultra'

Mike (Jesse Eisenberg) and Phoebe (Kristen Stewart) are a pair of potheads in American Ultra.
Alan Markfield Courtesy of Lions Gate Films

Within the mishmash of influences on the stoner action/comedy American Ultra — namely, Repo Man, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Pineapple Express, and a pile of pointless hyper-violent comic books — the film nearly finds itself in the cognitive dissonance of a pothead who discovers his inner badass. There's something funny about Jesse Eisenberg, that sentient bundle of nerves, standing over the bodies of government agents he's just dispatched with a spoon and a piping hot bowl of ramen noodles.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

'Learning To Drive' On Well-Traveled Roads

Darwan (Ben Kingsley) and Wendy (Patricia Clarkson) in Learning to Drive.
Linda Kallerus Courtesy of Broad Green Pictures

Driving, stunned mainstream-media accounts of Gen-Y tastes report, is becoming less popular. But learning how to operate a car still serves as a straightforward metaphor for accepting responsibility and acquiring new skills. So straightforward, in fact, that Learning to Drive is barely capable of a left turn.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

'She's Funny That Way': Old-School Comedy With An Old-School Premise

Owen Wilson and Isabella Imogen Poots in She's Funny That Way.
Courtesy of Lions Gate Films

Midway through Peter Bogdanovich's enjoyably giddy romantic comedy, a smitten Manhattan playwright (Will Forte) treats a pretty young woman (British actress Imogen Poots) to a lesson in ancient history, when "women were treated like chattel" but "prostitutes were sacred." You'll have to see the movie to learn whether the scribe knows that he's talking to an aspiring actress who moonlights as a lady of the night.

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The Two-Way
2:48 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Weather Complaints Affirmed: NOAA Says July Was Hottest Month Globally On Record

A man finds a bit of shade on the boardwalk at Brighton Beach in New York City.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:07 pm

It wasn't all in your head — last month was hotter than ever before.

Scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration report that July had the highest average temperatures in records since 1880.

And it's not just in the U.S. Average July temperatures around the world set heat records too, NPR's Kat Chow reports.

She tells our Newscast unit that:

"This confirms what NASA and a Japanese agency found using separate data.

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Health
2:32 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Study Suggests Some Treatment For Early Breast Cancer Is Unnecessary

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:52 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

World
2:32 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

UN Critcizes Saudi-Backed Operations In Yemen, But U.S. Stays Silent

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:54 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Shots - Health News
2:32 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Can Health Care Be Cured Of Racial Bias?

Katherine Streeter for NPR

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 5:55 pm

Jane Lazarre was pacing the hospital waiting room. Her son Khary, 18, had just had knee surgery, but the nurses weren't letting her in to see him.

"They told us he would be out of anesthesia in a few minutes," she remembers. "The minutes became an hour, the hour became two hours."

She and her husband called the surgeon in a panic. He said that Khary had come out of anesthesia violently — thrashing and flailing about. He told Lazarre that with most young people Khary's age, there wouldn't have been a problem. The doctors and nurses would have gently held him down.

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Business
2:32 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Sales Of Convertibles Are Decelerating; Blame The (Fuel) Economy

A classic Lincoln Continental convertible is seen in Washington, D.C., in June.
Sonari Glinton NPR

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:32 pm

Few images evoke the lazy hazy days of summer more than a convertible driving down the coast. Soon, though, that image may be pure nostalgia.

Sales of convertibles have seen a steep decline, falling by more than 40 percent in the past decade alone. And with new, tougher fuel economy standards, the days of riding with the top down could be numbered.

Jack Nerad of Kelley Blue Book has owned a 1962 convertible Corvette for nearly 40 years. Nerad lives in Orange County, Calif., a seemingly ideal place for a convertible, but his classic car often stays at home.

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Europe
2:32 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Greek Prime Minister Resigns To Pave Way For New Elections

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:52 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Europe
2:32 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Small Time Smuggler Helps Migrants Reach Greece On The Cheap

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:32 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Business
2:32 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Regal Cinemas To Check Bags Upon Entry Into Movie Theaters

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:51 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR Story
2:32 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

10 Years After Katrina, New Orleans' Brass Bands March On

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:23 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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The Two-Way
2:31 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

France's Le Pen Forced Out Of Far-Right Party He Founded

French far-right National Front founder Jean-Marie Le Pen arrives for a news briefing at party headquarters in Nanterre, near Paris, on Thursday. The executive committee decided to expel Le Pen from the party over remarks downplaying the Holocaust.
Christian Hartmann Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:31 pm

Jean-Marie Le Pen, a stalwart of France's far-right wing for decades, has been expelled from the National Front he helped found — the culmination of a high-profile spat with his daughter and the party's president over remarks he made earlier this year downplaying the Holocaust.

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Goats and Soda
1:35 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

What Jimmy Carter Did After His 'Involuntary Retirement'

A long legacy in global health: Former President Jimmy Carter has worked to end neglected diseases since 1982. Here he sits with former South African President Nelson Mandela at a ceremony in Soweto, celebrating a new AIDS project in 2002.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:01 pm

When former President Jimmy Carter spoke at the American Museum of Natural History in New York this past January, the 90-year-old's bright blue eyes seemed to grow even more intensely blue, as he stood tall and spoke with the crisp command of a much younger man.

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The Two-Way
1:26 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Catching A Movie? Regal Cinemas May Be Checking Your Bag

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 1:59 pm

The movie theater chain Regal Cinemas, which is run by Regal Entertainment Group, has announced that it is checking the bags of theatergoers.

In its admittance procedures online, Regal says that any bag or backpack is subject to inspection:

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NPR Story
12:29 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Is Breakfast Really So Important?

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 1:59 pm

The debate rages on: Is breakfast the most important meal of your day, or can you skip it without dire consequences? NPR food and nutrition correspondent Allison Aubrey explains that the answer isn’t simple. Although most people do report eating breakfast, the health benefits depend on what you eat and who you are. She discusses the research with Here & Now’s Lisa Mullins.

Guest

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NPR Story
12:29 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Des Moines Makes The List

The Pappajohn Sculpture Park in Des Moines' Western Gateway Park plays host to the Des Moines Arts Festival. (Dsmspence/Wikimedia Commons)

It seems like every time you log onto Facebook someone has shared a link to one of those lists that rank cities in categories. “The 10 Happiest Cities for Young Professionals” or “America’s Best Cities for Barbecue.” Why are these lists so popular? And more importantly, what’s their impact? Iowa Public Radio’s Sarah Boden went in search of answers.

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NPR Story
12:29 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

Gawker, Salon, Vice To Unionize Their Editorial Staffs

Buzzfeed CEO Jonah Peretti speaks onstage during '“Missing Ink: The New Journalism” at the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts on October 8, 2014 in San Francisco, California. (Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Vanity Fair)

Gawker, Salon, and Vice have all decided to unionize their editorial staffs this summer. Buzzfeed’s owner, however, says collective bargaining wouldn’t be right for his company.

NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik talks with Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson about why unions are making their way into new media, and whether Jonah Peretti is right to say unions wouldn’t be good for his employees.

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Television
12:02 pm
Thu August 20, 2015

'Fear The Walking Dead' And 'Documentary Now!' Riff On Familiar Themes

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. Our TV critic, David Bianculli, has reviews of two very different new TV projects, IFC's "Documentary Now!" which premieres tonight, and AMC's "Fear The Walking Dead," which begins Sunday.

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The Two-Way
11:45 am
Thu August 20, 2015

Greek PM Steps Down, Calls New Elections, In Wake Of Bailout Deal

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras leaves his office in Athens on Thursday, hours before he announced he would step down as prime minister amid fresh elections set for Sept. 20.
Giannis Kotsiaris AP

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 4:52 pm

Updated at 2 p.m. ET

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has announced that he will step down, paving the way for early elections following a bruising battle over austerity measures linked to a European bailout package that caused a major split in the leftist ruling party.

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All Tech Considered
11:42 am
Thu August 20, 2015

How Close Are We Really To A Robot-Run Society?

A row of Google self-driving Lexus cars at a Google event in Mountain View, Calif. The cars use sensors and computing power to maneuver around traffic.
Eric Risberg AP

Originally published on Fri August 21, 2015 5:01 am

From Rosie, the Jetsons' robot maid, to Arnold Schwarzenegger's cyborg in The Terminator, popular culture has frequently conceived of robots as having a humanlike form, complete with "eyes" and mechanical limbs. But tech reporter John Markoff says that robots don't always have a physical presence.

"I have a very broad definition of what a robot is," he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "A robot can be ... a machine that can walk around, or it can be software that is a personal assistant, something like Siri or Cortana or Google Now."

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The Two-Way
11:09 am
Thu August 20, 2015

New Rules Go Into Effect At Busy U.S.-Mexico Border Crossing

Pedestrians going to Tijuana from San Diego must now choose between a line for Mexicans, who get waved through the border crossing, and a line for foreigners, who must first show a passport.
Lenny Ignelzi AP

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 3:53 pm

Fleeing to Tijuana? Not from the San Ysidro crossing, you aren't.

As of Wednesday, foreign pedestrians crossing into Mexico between San Diego and Tijuana are required to present a passport, fill out paperwork and, if they are staying for longer than one week, pay a 330-peso fee (about $20).

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The Two-Way
9:30 am
Thu August 20, 2015

Danny Becomes First Hurricane Of Atlantic Season

A satellite image of Danny as it moves slowly westward toward the Lesser Antilles.
NOAA

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 10:00 am

It's official. Tropical Storm Danny has made the leap, becoming the first hurricane of the Atlantic season as it makes its way toward the eastern Caribbean.

Currently, the storm is centered about 1,200 miles east of the Lesser Antilles and moving west at 10 mph. The National Hurricane Center's "forecast cone" has Hurricane Danny making landfall possibly as far north as Puerto Rico or as far south as St. Lucia.

The storm currently has sustained winds of nearly 75 mph, with higher gusts.

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The Salt
9:13 am
Thu August 20, 2015

At Farm To Ballet, Watch Vermont's Cows And Tomatoes Do Arabesques

Dancers Rini Lovshin-Smith, Lindsay Halman, and Marya Carmolli play leaves of lettuce in Vermont's Farm to Ballet project.
Courtesy of Sujata Gupta

In a grassy Vermont field as a horse skitters in the distance, dancer Chatch Pregger is scaling a makeshift barn. He stretches his arms outward, holding an E for East in his hand. As the chicken feathers on his head flutter in the breeze, it's easy indeed to imagine him as a graceful weathervane rooster.

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NPR History Dept.
9:03 am
Thu August 20, 2015

16 'Spiffy' Words College Students Used In 1916

Barnard College student council in 1916
Library of College

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 1:30 pm

Just about a century ago, an international student at a college in the United States was telling someone what she likes best about the English language: American slang. "I must learn it," she said. "It is so unexpected."

For example, she was surprised to learn — according to a November 1916 edition of the Delta Delta Delta sorority publication, the Trident -- that "brick" was the masculine equivalent of "peach" because the former was a "term of approval" for a man and the latter was a term of approval for a woman.

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The Two-Way
8:47 am
Thu August 20, 2015

Former President Carter Says He Will 'Cut Back Dramatically' On Public Schedule

Former President Jimmy Carter discusses his cancer diagnosis at the Carter Center in Atlanta, on Thursday. Carter, 90, said the cancer has spread to his brain, and he will undergo radiation treatment at Emory University Hospital
Erik S. Lesser EPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu August 20, 2015 10:53 am

Former President Jimmy Carter said he and his wife, Rosalynn, are going to "cut back dramatically" on their public schedule as he begins radiation therapy later today.

During a press conference in Atlanta, Carter said doctors found melanoma that had spread to his liver and his brain. Ninety-eight percent of that kind of cancer first shows up on the skin, he said. Two percent develops first inside the body.

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Ask Me Another
8:46 am
Thu August 20, 2015

This Is Not App-ening

Who needs an app that tells you if it's dark outside? Apparently, somebody does: it is a real thing that exists (no, we can't believe it either). In this quiz, we'll find out about other apps that are too weird to be true, and some others that we made up just for fun.

Heard in Sir Patrick Stewart: Brush Up Your Shakespeare

Ask Me Another
8:46 am
Thu August 20, 2015

Totally False Eponyms

An eponym is something that is named for a person. In this game, we pretend that some everyday words could be etymologically traced to a famous namesake. What kind of fuel might be named for the bald star of The Fast and the Furious franchise?

Heard in Sir Patrick Stewart: Brush Up Your Shakespeare

Ask Me Another
8:46 am
Thu August 20, 2015

Sir Patrick Stewart

Sir Patrick Stewart on the AMA stage.
Mike Katzif NPR

Growing up, Sir Patrick Stewart never dreamed of being a knight. "I just dreamed [that] there was some food for the next meal," he told Ophira Eisenberg on the Ask Me Another stage in Brooklyn. As a boy, Stewart's heroes were distinguished thespians — Sir Laurence Olivier, Sir John Gielgud, Sir Alec Guinness and Sir John Clements. But recently, Stewart's friend Sir Ian McKellan pointed out to him, "You know, Patrick... those actors, those remote heroes, those gods we admired so much — it's now us!"

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Ask Me Another
8:46 am
Thu August 20, 2015

Scientific Rhyme-a-rific

Science is more fun with some wordplay. In this game, we satisfy the science nerds and the word nerds with some clues to rhyming pairs of words. The catch? One of the words is a tricky scientific term — get ready for some "friction fiction"!

Heard in Sir Patrick Stewart: Brush Up Your Shakespeare

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