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'Puzzle' is Well Made, but a Few Pieces are Missing

MOVIE REVIEW
Based on the film Rompecabezas, Puzzle is one of those little-known independent films that sneaks into theaters with little to no fanfare, although the fact that it is being promoted “from the producer of Little Miss Sunshine” should help it get noticed somewhat. Puzzle is a quiet, little film about a woman who discovers that jigsaw puzzles are the key to changing her life. While the subject matter doesn’t sound all that exciting, the film really isn’t about puzzles but instead about one finding their voice, or so it appears. It’s also a message film that has its own agenda expecting the audience to agree with the choices of the main character and applaud her “brave” behavior. Frankly, it just feels manipulative.

Directed by Marc Turtletaub, Puzzle’s most impactful scene comes within the first few minutes. We see Agnes (Kelly MacDonald) cleaning up the house and they decorating it for a birthday party. Then we see her serving appetizers while being ignored by the guests. …

This Day in Pop Culture for September 5

"The Amazing Race" premiered on September 5, 2001.

The First Amazing Race

The reality TV series created by Elise Doganieri and Bertram van Munster, The Amazing Race, began its first competition on this day in 2001 on CBS. Hosted by Phil Keoghan since the show’s premiere the teams of two are typically two people who have something in common: they are brothers, husband and wife, co-workers, best friends, etc. One season the show featured families of four competing and a couple of seasons teamed up total strangers with each other. During their “amazing race,” contestants are face with numerous challenges that they must complete in order to get their next clue which will lead them to yet another clue or instruction on a leg’s pit stop. The last team to reach the pit stop is often eliminated. Throughout the season, teams litterally travel the world in a number of days. The Amazing Race has won 13 Emmy Awards often for “Outstanding Reality-Competition Program.”


Walt Disney's first cartoon character, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, was born on September 5, 1927.

Oswald the Lucky Rabbit is Born

In 1927 Universal Studios decided that they wanted to get into the cartoon business and needed a cartoon character of its own. Disney's distributor, Charles Mintz, talked Disney and Ub Iwerks into creating a new character they could sell to Universal. An agreement was made and on this day in 1927, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit appeared for the first time in the short, Trolley Trouble. Universal didn’t treasure the little guy as much as Walt did. They selected the name “Oswald” out of a hat. The next year, it is reported that Disney met with Mintz in hopes of receiving a more profitable contract. Instead Mintz asked Disney to take a 20% cut in pay. Disney quit the studio leaving Oswald behind. Oswald wasn’t returned to the Disney Company until February 2006. Today he can be seen battling baddies in the video game series, Epic Mickey.


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