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.


'My People,' My People: A French Farce Misfires

Jan 10, 2013

If Tolstoy was right about every unhappy family being unhappy in its own way, the cinema of domestic dysfunction will likely never die. But it has gotten awfully droopy, mired in familiar plotting, quasi-wise psychobabble, or — in the case of so many comedies — a knowing prankishness (I'm looking at you, Judd Apatow) that wearies the soul.

I'm fairly sure that with his excitable first feature, Let My People Go, the French director Mikael Buch means to turn the well-worn tropes of Jewish family comedy inside out. That he ends up reaffirming them, along with a gay stereotype or two, is due less to a lack of raw talent than to the sense that, like many novice filmmakers mining their own predicaments for material, he seems caught up in the illusion of having a unique neurosis. The result is late Woody Allen, when early might have done the trick.

A lack of perspective certainly confounds the movie's nervous hero, Reuben (Nicolas Maury). Having fled Paris and the confines of his cartoon Jewish family (we are spared "Hava Nagila" on the soundtrack, but only by a hair), Reuben believes he has found nirvana in Finland, depicted — in delightful homage to Jacques Demy — as a candy-colored paradise of peace, plenty and liberal open minds. There, Reuben lives in apparent harmony with his hunky Nordic boyfriend, Teemu (Jarkko Niemi), and works as the kind of mailman for whom housewives bake cookies.

As for plot, when a misdirected package containing big bucks comes his way, Reuben gets the heave-ho from the holier-than-thou Teemu and reluctantly returns, on the eve of Passover, to the bosom of a family that's so by-the-book crazy you barely have energy left to register that his smother-mother is played by Pedro Almodovar muse Carmen Maura.

There's also a philandering father, a crisis-ridden sister preparing to divorce her goyishe husband, and an ostentatiously hetero brother who helps out in the family dry-cleaning business. To add to the undifferentiated hysteria, several pillars of the Jewish community up the ante by conducting clandestine same-sex affairs.

And then there's Reuben. On the plus side, Buch and his co-writer, Christophe Honore, never make a political issue of his gay identity. It's taken as read, along with the movie's candidly uninhibited sex scenes. All of which might signal a new day for gay cinema if Reuben himself, played right off a cliff by the stage-trained Maury, were less of a cardboard gay hysteric greeting every small twist of adversity as if it were the end of days. Meant to charm, he only irritates.

In what often feels like a parody of French farce, Let My People Go rushes from one shticky situation, one tired sight gag, one ethnic and sexual caricature to the next, before deflating into a family-unity denouement you don't have to be Jewish to see coming down the pike.

I can't quarrel with Buch's warm heart or his insight that those who fail to come to terms with their pasts are condemned to eternal childhood. But that message is no fresher or less inevitable than Reuben's 11th-hour access to maturity — though not before he whines, "My life is one bad Jewish joke after another." Alas, how true.

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