NPR Politics presents the Lunchbox List: our favorite campaign news and stories curated from NPR and around the Web in digestible bites (100 words or less!). Look for it every weekday afternoon from now until the conventions.

Convention Countdown

The Republican National Convention is in 4 days in Cleveland.

The Democratic National Convention is in 11 days in Philadelphia.

NASA has released the first picture of Jupiter taken since the Juno spacecraft went into orbit around the planet on July 4.

The picture was taken on July 10. Juno was 2.7 million miles from Jupiter at the time. The color image shows some of the atmospheric features of the planet, including the giant red spot. You can also see three of Jupiter's moons in the picture: Io, Europa and Ganymede.

The Senate is set to approve a bill intended to change the way police and health care workers treat people struggling with opioid addictions.

My husband and I once took great pleasure in preparing meals from scratch. We made pizza dough and sauce. We baked bread. We churned ice cream.

Then we became parents.

Now there are some weeks when pre-chopped veggies and a rotisserie chicken are the only things between us and five nights of Chipotle.

Parents are busy. For some of us, figuring out how to get dinner on the table is a daily struggle. So I reached out to food experts, parents and nutritionists for help. Here is some of their (and my) best advice for making weeknight meals happen.

"O Canada," the national anthem of our neighbors up north, comes in two official versions — English and French. They share a melody, but differ in meaning.

Let the record show: neither version of those lyrics contains the phrase "all lives matter."

But at the 2016 All-Star Game, the song got an unexpected edit.

At Petco Park in San Diego, one member of the Canadian singing group The Tenors — by himself, according to the other members of the group — revised the anthem.

School's out, and a lot of parents are getting through the long summer days with extra helpings of digital devices.

How should we feel about that?

Police in Baton Rouge say they have arrested three people who stole guns with the goal of killing police officers. They are still looking for a fourth suspect in the alleged plot, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

"Police say the thefts were at a Baton Rouge pawn shop early Saturday morning," Greg says. "One person was arrested at the scene. Since then, two others have been arrested and six of the eight stolen handguns have been recovered. Police are still looking for one other man."

A 13-year-old boy is among those arrested, Greg says.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

After an international tribunal invalidated Beijing's claims to the South China Sea, Chinese authorities have declared in no uncertain terms that they will be ignoring the ruling.

The Philippines brought the case to the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, objecting to China's claims to maritime rights in the disputed waters. The tribunal agreed that China had no legal authority to claim the waters and was infringing on the sovereign rights of the Philippines.

Donald Trump is firing back at Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after she disparaged him in several media interviews. He tweeted late Tuesday that she "has embarrassed all" with her "very dumb political statements" about the candidate. Trump ended his tweet with "Her mind is shot - resign!":

Pages

'Revenant' Mashes Up Undead Havoc, Anti-War Theme

Aug 23, 2012
Originally published on August 23, 2012 8:22 pm

Back in 2005, for the Showtime anthology series Masters of Horror, director Joe Dante and writer Sam Hamm were given carte blanche to make whatever they wanted, so long as it came in under an hour and could be classified as "horror."

They delivered, in Homecoming, one of the sharpest and angriest films about the Iraq war to date — a blunt allegory about U.S. soldiers who rise from the dead not to feast on the living but to vote the president out of office. It's an anti-war satire that only technically functioned as a zombie movie.

The clever horror comedy The Revenant plays like the inverse of Homecoming: It isn't technically a zombie movie — a "revenant" returns from the dead as a corporeal spirit — but it more or less functions as one, and its anti-war sentiments are trafficked in like a subterfuge that blows up with unexpected force.

Where Dante and Hamm delivered their message with caustic wit, writer-director Kerry Prior opts instead for a silly, shambling bloodbath in the Shaun of the Dead vein, following a couple of buddies as they trade jokes and confront dastardly forces from beyond the grave. It ultimately makes a statement, but getting there amounts to a half-fun, half-tedious clearing of the throat.

While on a night mission in the Iraq desert, Bart (David Anders) dies from multiple gunshot wounds after he stops to tend to a wounded child and enemy troops ambush his supply truck. Though he gets a respectful funeral back home, Bart doesn't stay dead. After waking up 6 feet under and crawling his way to the surface, he's both relieved to discover that he's still alive and horrified that his eyes have turned milky white and the decomposition process hasn't abated.

He turns to his stoner pal Joey (Chris Wylde) for help, but after some hilariously disgusting trial and error, Bart learns that human food isn't for him — unless, that is, the food is human.

It's here that The Revenant starts getting into dicey territory. Bart isn't some brain-thirsty zombie, but a conscientious person who happens to crave blood and flesh; he can't bring himself to ravage the innocent. So he and Joey instead become a team of vigilante crime fighters, gunning down stickup men and drug pushers to cheers from the community, who mostly look the other way as they abscond with the bodies.

The bloody, chaotic incidents that follow add most of the fat to the flabby two-hour running time, and they hijack the movie tonally, too, obliterating the deft, fish-out-of-water comedy of the early scenes in favor of carnage and mayhem.

Perhaps the problem is that Bart's predicament is novel while his solution is overly familiar. Before Bart realizes that he must feast on human flesh and blood, The Revenant gets huge laughs from its hero coming to terms with his situation, from the trial-and-error of sating his appetite — a bite of cold pizza unleashes a torrent of black sludge from his mouth — to a hospital visit where he matter-of-factly pleads to a freaked-out nurse, "I'm kind of decomposing here."

On the other hand, The Revenant is about aligning Bart's conscience with his horrific needs, and that's where Prior's allegorical agenda starts to pay off. Bart gets killed in Iraq when his compassion wins out over protocol; the ironic arc of The Revenant is that as he slowly divorces himself from humanity, Bart finally becomes a real soldier.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.