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  • Peter Weller starred in the original “RoboCop” in 1987, directed by Dutch provocateur Paul Verhoeven.

    Not all escapist fare is for kidsFeb 14, 2014 12:00 AM
    Thanks to Harry Potter, “Lord of the Rings” and Hollywood’s insistence that no big-budget movie be rated R, imaginative fantasy and sci-fi films have become synonymous with kiddie fare — or, at the very least, kid-friendly fare. So theatergoers this week get a PG-13 remake of “RoboCop.” It could be an entertaining romp, but its gory, vulgar, R-rated predecessor was so much more than that.

     
  • You can take control of Chris Pratt’s “The Lego Movie” avatar in the new video game based on this week’s theatrical release. Pratt and his wife, Anna Faris, had fun at the movie’s premiere Feb. 1 in Los Angeles.

    Another way to play with Legos Feb 7, 2014 12:00 AM
    “The Lego Movie,” a new 3-D animated feature from the makers of “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs” and “21 Jump Street,” arrives in theaters today with an impressive roster of vocal talents and a lot of positive buzz. It was only a matter of time before the Danish toy would hit the silver screen — Lego has expanded far beyond its line of colorful construction blocks to include video games, direct-to-video movies, retail stores, theme parks and attractions like the Legoland Discovery Center in Schaumburg.

     
  • For the first time, Army Ranger protagonist William “B.J.” Blazkowitz is illustrated as a real person and not another action hero in “Wolfenstein: The New Order.”

    'Wolfenstein': 5 ways it's being reinventedFeb 3, 2014 12:00 AM
    In the upcoming video game “Wolfenstein: The New Order,” players will be doing only one thing — killing Nazis — but the creators at MachineGames, who have never before taken on a “Wolfenstein” game, have added several updates to make the 32-year-old first-person shooter franchise feel modern. “New Order” is celebrating the kamikaze style of the “Wolfenstein” series, which essentially launched the first-person shoot-'em-up genre, while reinventing it with a story line reminiscent of “Inglourious Basterds” and “Captain America.”

     
  • Super Sunday: Football funday is finally here Jan 31, 2014 12:00 AM
    The biggest day on the NFL calendar is here, the virtual holiday known as Super Bowl Sunday. This year’s championship game, airing at 5:30 on Fox, pits veteran QB Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos against controversial loudmouth Richard Sherman and the Seattle Seahawks, but the on-field fireworks may once again take a backseat to the expensive commercials and another lavish halftime show.

     
  • Oscar nominee Barkhad Abdi stars in “Captain Phillips,” now available on Blu-ray, DVD and video on-demand services.

    Watch the nominees at home Jan 24, 2014 12:00 AM
    In five weeks and two days, one of this year's nine best picture nominees will win the Academy Award — and most of the millions of people watching the telecast around the world will have seen none of the contenders.

     
  • Nintendo essentially launched the fitness game genre in 2008 with “Wii Fit,” and now they're back with an updated edition for the Wii U system that works in tandem with the old Wii Balance Board and the new Fit Meter.

    'Wii Fit U,' 'Xbox Fitness' feel the burn Jan 21, 2014 12:00 AM
    While video game consoles can't help users save money or stop smoking — yet, anyway — there are a few recently released games that can help with the most popular of New Year's resolutions: exercise. Here's a look at four titles that offer an alternative to working out at the gym or with a personal trainer.

     
  •  A scene from the video game, “Wii Fit U”. Even with new titles including “Pikmin 3,” Nintendo failed to capitalize on U.S. video-game product sales that surged to their highest in three years in December.

    Nintendo forced to study new business model Jan 17, 2014 12:00 AM
    “The revision is much worse than expected,” Yusuke Tsunoda, an analyst at Tokai Tokyo Securities Co. in Tokyo, said by phone. “It’s going to be a third consecutive annual operating loss and that raises a serious management issue.”

     
  •  21-year-old Trevor Martin, who parlayed his expertise from playing “Call of Duty” games into a career as a video game commentator on YouTube, in Champaign.

    Champaign man a YouTube video-game star Jan 9, 2014 12:00 AM
    Playing video games has paid off handsomely for 21-year-old Trevor Martin of Champaign. Martin parlayed his expertise from playing “Call of Duty” games into a career as a video game commentator on YouTube. In the process, he’s built a following of nearly 2 million YouTube subscribers and taken in streams of revenue from corporate advertisers.

     
  • Nintendo’s popular “Wii Fit” program, in which players use a balance board to weigh themselves, do yoga and play exercise games, comes to the Wii U console this week.

    Getting fit with a Wii U Jan 8, 2014 12:00 AM
    Nintendo’s popular fitness program launches Friday on its Wii U console.“Wii Fit U” gives players more than 70 activities to try. With the use of the Wii Fit balance board peripheral, you can dance along to hip-hop and Flamenco routines, do a little virtual luging or scuba diving, and, gulp, weigh yourself to keep track of your progress.

     
  •  Michael Thomasson is featured in the just-released “Guinness World Records 2014 Gamer’s Edition,” for having the largest collection of video games, 10,607. The number bests the previous record holder, Richard Lecce of Florida, who had 8,616 games in 2010.

    NY man’s 10,607 video games secure Guinness title Dec 28, 2013 12:00 AM
    Maybe it was getting his first video game, Cosmic Avenger, for Christmas at age 12, and then having to wait an entire year for the hard-to-land Colecovision console to play it on that made Michael Thomasson so determined to get his hands on every video game and system he could find. Now, 31 years and roughly 11,000 games later, Thomasson is the newly crowned world record holder for having the largest collection of video games. He is featured in a two-page spread in the just-released “Guinness World Records 2014 Gamer’s Edition.”

     
  • Benedict Cumberbatch’s face was inescapable this year, but he was invisible in his best performance of 2013.

    From Cumberbatch to Targaryen: The best of 2013 Dec 27, 2013 12:00 AM
    Sean doesn’t have a top-ten list, but he does have a look at a few of his favorite things from all corners of pop culture in 2013.

     
  • Elizabeth plays a major part in one of the best games of the year: “BioShock Infinite.”

    AP critics pick the year’s best video games Dec 24, 2013 12:00 AM
    “BioShock Infinite” tops two AP reviewers lists of the 10 best video games of 2013. A breathtaking journey to a kingdom in the clouds, “Infinite” is equally as wondrous as it is thought-provoking. A first-person shooter that philosophizes about such topics as racism, nationalism, religion and fate shouldn’t work, but this imaginative piece of fiction does on every level.

     
  •  Michael Thomasson poses in the basement of his suburban Buffalo home, where he stores his collection of video games.

    Man’s 10,607 video games secure Guinness title Dec 24, 2013 12:00 AM
    Along with the games, he has the devices to play them on, not only the Xboxes and PlayStations but obscure ones like the Casio Loopy, the only game system specifically geared toward girls, which came out in Japan in 1995, and the Pippin, a dud released by Apple the same year.

     
  • "Disney's Prep & Landing" airs Monday, Dec. 16, on ABC.

    Deck the DVR with boughs of hollyDec 13, 2013 12:00 AM
    Holiday movies and specials are dominating your on-screen cable guide these days, and the next week brings us merry and bright reasons to set those DVRs. To get you started off right, NBC presents Frank Capra's classic “It's a Wonderful Life” at 7 p.m. Saturday.

     
  • Mario and friends can transform into cats in “Super Mario 3D World.”

    Mario back on the prowl in ‘3D World’ Dec 10, 2013 12:00 AM
    The new “Super Mario 3D World” for Nintendo's Wii U evokes memories of “Super Mario 64.” While not genius, it is a charming, occasionally brilliant addition to a 30-year legacy of video-game excellence. Mario’s latest adventure is designed to accommodate up to four players. The four available characters have different skills: Luigi can jump higher, Princess Peach can float, Toad can run faster and Mario more or less averages them out.

     
  • Emanuel Jumatate, from Chicago, hugs his new Xbox One after he purchased it at a Best Buy in Evanston. Microsoft is billing the Xbox One, which includes an updated Kinect motion sensor, as an all-in-one entertainment system rather than just a gaming console.

    Review: Xbox One nearly a set-top box replacement Dec 7, 2013 12:00 AM
    The Xbox One won’t quite replace your TV set-top box, but it comes awfully close. The latest game console from Microsoft takes a big leap toward being the main entertainment hub in your living room. It gives you a program guide for browsing what’s on TV and what’s highlighted in apps such as Netflix and Amazon. You can listen to music and view photos stored on Microsoft’s SkyDrive service. You can make Skype video calls. And yeah, you can even play games.

     
  •  In this undated photo released by Activision, two robots, Boom Jet and Magna Charge, switch body parts in “Skylanders Swap Force.”

    Video game gifts for kids Dec 7, 2013 12:00 AM
    Need help picking out a video game gift for kids? One of Nintendo’s most beloved properties, Pokemon is back with some tweaks in its latest versions, Mario and Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games stands out as being a good family game And one of the most popular franchises out there, Skylanders is back with a twist.

     
  •  Trying to find a video game gift for the holidays? Price and platform can help you decide.

    Video games: Pros and cons for 2013 holiday gift-giving Dec 7, 2013 12:00 AM
    What's good and what's bad with today's top holiday video game gift options, including Grant Theft Auto V, Call of Duty and Forza Motorsport 5.

     
  •  Tony Stewart reacts in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series’ AMP Energy 500 auto race at Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, Ala., in 2008.

    Stewart picked for ‘NASCAR ‘14’ video game cover Dec 3, 2013 12:00 AM
    Tony Stewart’s fan base seemed to rally around the injured driver, who missed the final months of the season after breaking his right leg in an Aug. 5 sprint car crash.

     
  • Frank Darabont, left, directs his cast on the set of “Mob City,” premiering Wednesday, Dec. 4, on TNT.

    ‘Shawshank’ director comes back to TV Nov 29, 2013 12:00 AM
    Frank Darabont, the writer/director who made his name with three big-screen Stephen King adaptations, returns to television next week, two years after being ousted as showrunner of AMC’s wildly popular “The Walking Dead.”

     
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