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Review: 'Kubo and the Two Strings' Presents A Magical Adventure With A Meaningful Message

Come and join Kubo on his magical journey, plus in a few you'll be able to see Charlize Theron and Mathew McConaughey speak about the film,  

Kubo and the Two Strings chronicles the story of a young Japanese boy who goes on a quest to find his dad’s helmet, magical armor and sword—before his tyrant twin aunts deliver the items to his evil supernatural grandfather, Moon King. Thus, it’s pivotal that he finds these goods for protection and eternal life.

In the grand scheme of things, this is a story of freedom, which has its main subject, Kubo, seeking an armor of protection within the same confines of having (or yearning for) a family. Kubo (Art Parkinson of The Game of Thrones) has only one eye, the other is concealed by an eye patch, which is hidden under his long black bang cut. Despite the minor disability, he manages to scrape up some money by telling his village tales of origami figure fights. To enhance his storytelling abilities, he uses a string instrument. You’ll see his mother slipping in and out of a depressive toxic haze, and his samurai father seemingly eternally absent as he, apparently, lost a battle trying to get back his son’s missing eye.

The film directed by Travis Knight and written by Marc Haimes and Chris Butler was made by Oregon based animation studio, Laika Films—which is responsible for “Coraline” (2009) and “ParaNorman” (2012). Within the parameters of creating an animated film, Laika excels on the movie’s illustration filled with action packed scenes. There are eyeball filled oceans, and a humungous giant with screws on his head. All this coupled with interludes of a tundra like scenery; forming all a part of Kubo’s journey.

But he doesn’t do it all alone. There is definitely a sense of family here with Kubo’s surrogate parents being personified by a sassy no nonsense monkey (Charlize Theron) and jock like wisecracking meathead Beetle (Matthew McConaughey). Amid their travels, Monkey and Beetle constantly bicker, which makes for an entertaining dialogue between the two. This isn’t just another fantasy filled tale, there are lessons to be learned here about the power of family, hope and story telling all intertwined into one.

It’s filled with emotion heavy scenes that can have you questioning if this is really suited for a PG rated audience. Yet interestingly enough, it’s great to see an American film studio be so precise with its interpretation of Asian culture. It’s magical, fantasy filled and something that is out of this world—but it works. Infused within the storyline is this notion of the power that the dead have. That said, it's impressive how many different components of the culture are piled up together, yet free flow within the storyline. The pacing of the movie also works well with all its action, you won't feel lost as your watching it. Kubo will help you find your way, as he is finding his and what matters most to him.

 

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El Chapo's Reportedly Deceived Suppliers To Buy Meth Ingredients

More tea is being spilled in the trial of pseudo-famous Mexican drug lord  Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman Loera. On Monday (Dec. 17), it was revealed in court that El Chapo went to the sister of a Colombian drug trafficker to cop methamphetamine for his Sinaloa drug cartel.

According to the New York Daily News, Jorge Milton Cifuentes Villa was one of the witnesses called to the stand during the 61-year-old's criminal preceding in the States. Chapo is being hit with a laundry list of charges including money laundering, conspiracy, firearms and international distribution of cocaine, meth, heroin, and marijuana.

Cifuentes confessed Chapo went behind his back and made a deal with his siblings who are also involved in their illegal activities to be a source for methamphetamine so that he can turn a profit in his business.

Cifuentes said that Chapo neglected the fact that meth is extremely addictive and can damage the physical and mental state of young people who consume it and purchased from his sister and brother, the drug's precursor ephedrine.

“Don Joaquín knows I (didn’t) like to f**k around with ephedrine,” Cifuentes said in the courtroom.

It wasn't until after a plane that carried Colombian-imported cocaine crashed on it's trip to Mexican that Cifuentes' siblings came clean and admitted they took a deal with Chapo as it the ephedrine was also in the cargo of the aircraft.

Cifuentes escaped to Venezuela in 2010 around the time these incidents were going down and changed his mind regarding meth out of desperation for money, saying that “Hunger made me change my mind."

Chapo faces life in prison if convicted of all charges.

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Famous Dex Explains Why He Fell Asleep During Instagram Live

Famous Dex had his legion of fans concerned when he abruptly knocked out during a live stream with fans. After concerns of drug use sprouted from social media, the rapper has spoken out about the incident.

Getting back on Instagram Live Tuesday (Dec. 18), the rapper blamed his work ethic–not opioids or lean–as to why he dozed off. "First [off], I'm a human being," he said. "I work my a** off and once you put in overtime overnight and come in at 4am in the morning and go live, then hey. I'm not going to lie, I was tired and high at the same time."

In the wake of the deaths of Mac Miller and Lil' Peep as well as the recent rehab stint of Soundcloud rapper Lil' Xan, drug abuse in hip-hop is becoming a hot-button topic.

"Don't let the world trick you and be fooled," Dex said to the camera.

Dex has not held his tongue when it comes to admitting that he used several drugs in the past including lean which led to him being hospitalized.

Famous Dex falls asleep during his Instagram Live broadcast. ☹️ pic.twitter.com/9hztdIlqEC

— HipHopDX (@HipHopDX) December 18, 2018

Check out the video below.

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Eve Says Her Record Label Had Trepidation About 2001 Gwen Stefani Collaboration

In 2001, Philly rapper Eve finally earned her breakthrough hit on the pop charts with "Let Me Blow Ya Mind," a bouncy hip-hop collaboration with No Doubt's lead vocalist Gwen Stefani. However, E-V-E revealed on CBS' The Talk that her record label at the time had doubts regarding Stefani's feature.

On Monday (Dec. 17), Stefani appeared on the show. Sharon Osbourne asked co-host Eve what she remembers from their first musical encounter 17 years ago to which Eve said, "I just loved Gwen. I was a huge fan, and I was like this is gonna work. Although, the label didn't think it would work."

Stefani responded, "Really? I thought it was the opposite. I thought they said, 'You need to have her on the record.' " Eve continued stating that she had to "fight" for Stefani and was "happy it happened."

 

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So fun being on @thetalkcbs @therealeve @sherylunderwood @sharonosbourne @carrieanninaba & @carnie68! #YouMakeItFeelLikeChristmas #thetalk #everybodytalks

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In 2002, just a month after the Dr. Dre-produced song took home the Grammy Award for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, Eve knew the duet was meant to be, telling VIBE, "Gwen and I had an instant connection both artistically and spiritually. We could have been sisters in another life."

"Let Me Blow Ya Mind" became one of many songs to enter the music industry stratosphere in the 2000s where black R&B/hip-hop stars worked with white pop/rock acts that would eventually expand each other's demographic.

Despite the song's success, it wouldn't be the last time the two artists worked together. Eve was featured on Stefani's top 10 hit "Rich Girl" in 2004 off her debut multi-platinum-selling solo album Love. Angel. Music. Baby., and served as her opening act on Stefani's This Is What the Truth Feels Like Tour 12 years later.

Revisit the iconic hit below.

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