When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.


A Historical Comedy That Hangs On The Details

Dec 6, 2012

In Hyde Park on Hudson — a sly, modestly subversive dramedy about a crucial weekend meeting between England's King George VI and American President Franklin D. Roosevelt on the eve of World War II — the diffident young monarch (Samuel West) confides his frustration over his lifelong stutter while the two men enjoy a postprandial drink expressly forbidden by their womenfolk.

"That damn stutter, these useless legs," says the president (Bill Murray), going on to bestow fatherly advice about the need to project confidence. That counsel gives George a much-needed ego boost while clarifying why, in real life, Roosevelt was never seen in public using his wheelchair. Ever the canny politician, Roosevelt tells the younger man that "people don't want to see our flaws."

Times have changed, I guess, but this hugely entertaining movie is about the wisdom and — with trenchant wit and sympathy — the human flaws in one of America's most idealized heads of state.

Politically a lot was riding on that June 1939 weekend in the beautiful Hudson Valley retreat, to which the king and his prim bride, Elizabeth (Olivia Colman), had been sent to solicit American support in a war Britain couldn't hope to win alone. Sharply written by an American who lives in the area, Richard Nelson, and directed by Brit Roger Michell (Notting Hill, Persuasion), Hyde Park is about the birth of the two countries' special relationship — and at least one other, more intimate connection besides. The second one came to light when letters between the president and his fifth cousin, Daisy Suckley, were found under Daisy's bed after her death.

The weekend plays out through the eyes of Daisy, portrayed by Laura Linney as a timid virgin plucked from genteel post-Depression poverty to become the president's escape from the demands of his office — his confidante and more. To that degree, the movie is Daisy's take on their relationship, and the surprises it springs on an unworldly woman.

But the movie keeps peeling back like an onion to reveal more layers in Roosevelt's complicated domestic arrangements, observed with slightly wistful fascination by George and with horror by his very proper missus, whose idea of meeting Americans is waving at busy field hands.

The star of Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day and Wes Anderson's quirky postmodern comedies may seem like an odd choice to play Roosevelt. But there's no miscasting Murray, precisely because he never disappears into his characters. If anything he disappears into himself, and dares you to follow him there, implying there are secrets he may or may not share.

In Hyde Park, actor and character share an evasive cunning beneath the hail-fellow-well-met charm that made Roosevelt such a hit with the press and the public. Here, FDR is also an ambivalent overgrown schoolboy trying to keep everybody happy while stomping all over their feelings. He's always running away from the women who keep his life going: his hypervigilant mother (Elizabeth Wilson); his devoted secretary, Missy (Elizabeth Marvel); his wife, Eleanor, played by a discreetly butch and very funny Olivia Williams as a no-nonsense type who has better things to do than drop curtseys to, as she plainly sees it, a couple of useless royals; and Daisy herself, compliant and complicit. Until, that is, the scales drop from her eyes and she comes to see FDR the man, not the myth.

The camera whirls and twirls around these strong women, wickedly relishing the way they compete and collaborate to make him into the sage statesman who will brave his own country's isolationism and enter the war. Hyde Park may look like another of those immaculate, slightly waggish period pieces about minor scandal in the better homes and gardens of transatlantic blue bloods. But it is also a deadly serious comedy of international manners alerting us to how the path of history hangs on seemingly minor details.

As for George, whom we last saw played by a lugubrious Colin Firth in The King's Speech ... well, Firth is a major stud and all that, but West brings to this reluctant king a more persuasive speech impediment, and more important a nascent sense of fun. Despite the earnest propriety he shares with his hilariously paranoid wife (upon whose empire the sun has somehow failed to set), there's an adorable cutup and a hedonist just waiting to be sprung in this George. The Yanks may be just the people to let out his inner child, but according to Hyde Park, it's a tray full of hot dogs that clinches the deal.

Don't ask. (Recommended)

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