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Top DVD Rentals

  1. Men in Black III, Sony Pictures, PG-13
  2. The Dark Knight Rises, Warner Bros., PG-13
  3. The Amazing Spider-Man, Sony Pictures, PG-13
  4. Madagascar 3, Paramount Pictures, PG
  5. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Killer, 20th Century Fox, R
  6. The Expendables 2, Lionsgate, R
  7. The Bourne Legacy, Universal Pictures, PG-13
  8. Ted, Universal Pictures, R
  9. Resident Evil: Retribution, Screen Gems/Sony Pictures, R
  10. Brave, Walt Disney Pictures, PG

Top Pop Albums

  1. Red, Taylor Swift, Big Machine Records
  2. O.N.I.F.C., Wiz Khalifa, Atlantic
  3. Merry Christmas, Baby, Rod Stewart, Verve
  4. Take Me Home, One Direction, Columbia
  5. Christmas, Michael Buble, Reprise
  6. Warrior, Kesha, RCA

Top Pop Singles

  1. Locked Out of Heaven, Bruno Mars, Atlantic Records
  2. Diamonds, Rihanna, Def Jam
  3. Die Young, Kesha, Kemosabe Records/RCA Records
  4. Ho Hey, the Lumineers, Dualtone Music Group
  5. One More Night, Maroon 5, A&M Octone
  6. I Cry, Flo Rida, Atlantic
  7. Home, Phillip Phillips, Interscope Records

Omarr's Weekly Astrological Forecast

by Jeraldine Saunders

ARIES (March 21-April 19): When you are determined to create a unique experience, you sometimes end up in a fringe world. In the early part of the week, your penchant for the unusual and unconventional could put you on the outside.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): It pays to send the very best. Last-minute gifts are painstakingly adorned with as many pretty bows as those stashed away for months. In the week to come, you find it is more satisfying to give than to receive.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): You may be the one called upon to hammer in the nails if stockings are to be hung by the chimney with care. Expect to receive frequent requests for help and assistance from others in the week ahead.

CANCER (June 21-July 22): Be prepared to show off your versatility in the upcoming week. An unexpected change of plan can give you an opportunity to demonstrate your poise and preparedness for any and all contingencies.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Excitement can boil over like potatoes on the stove. Tensions may run high, as last minute holiday preparations cause a flurry of unexpected obligations. A day off might entail extra work this week.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Make season's greetings a priority; call loved ones far away. Touch base with clients with last-minute reminders. A touch of the Blarney Stone will make the wheels of commerce turn more smoothly in the week ahead.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Give in to the urge to splurge. When your wallet is full, it's a good time to express generosity in the upcoming week. Just because you count pennies and clip coupons doesn't mean you're middle name is Scrooge.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Get prepared for a fabulous week. Act the part of jolly old St. Nick by sending all your personal elves on errands. Take stock; plan ahead to take care of essentials that create holiday joy.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): Having Venus in your sign should draw others closer in the week ahead. Enjoy relaxation and cheerful social events. Expect a brief flurry of popularity. Impulsive spending could prove delightful.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Where there's a will, there's a way - but in some cases, getting your way may be viewed as willfulness in the upcoming week. Take a deep breath and relax. Demanding family members require patience.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Walk on the wild side. Your attraction to the latest fashions and technological gadgets will receive a workout in the week to come. Family and friends look to you for directions and knowledge.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Holiday outings are on the horizon. There's a sparkle in your eyes that invites others to join in the fun. Sense the magic in the air as this week unfolds. You shine the brightest when entertaining others.

'Django' a worthy addition to Tarantino's film library


by Jase Howell

"Django Unchained" is director Quentin Tarantino's latest stab at making a genre film with his own distinctive style.

This time around it is the spaghetti western, and Tarantino succeeds. Like everything he has directed, you would have to be blind not to notice his patented style all over this film. The overthe- top blood-letting mixed with the clever and at times absurd banter we have come to expect from Tarantino is tied together with some interesting soundtrack choices. In short, if you're a fan of Tarantino's work, you'll most likely be happy; if you're not, don't expect anything to change.

We can see early on the grand stage Tarantino is setting for Django (Jamie Foxx). We first find our protagonist in Texas, where the slave bearing scars from the whips of slave owners is freed from a chain gang by Dr. King Shultz (Christopher Waltz), a German ex- dentist/bounty hunter. Shultz is searching for a trio of nasty sorts, and Django once worked on their plantation. Shultz sees possibilities for Django to work as a bounty hunter - he is a sure shot and has no problems with violence, noting "Getting paid to kill white people. What's not to like?"

It isn't long until Schultz has taken a keen interest Django's past and his search to find his wife, Broomhilda (Kelly Washington), who was sold to different traders. They track her to Mississippi, and in true Tarantino fashion a loud overture and bold letters announce this chapter of the flick. Much of the epic tricks of Tarantino's trade will be recognized from his "Kill Bill" films. This saga isn't split into two parts, but is still quite the epic, clocking in at just under three hours.

In Mississippi the two bounty hunters encounter "Candieland," the plantation owned by one Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio in a brilliantly demented role). Mr. Candie is not above rape or having his vicious dogs tear slaves apart, and is a big fan of mandingo (a fight to the death between two slaves). Broomhilda is indeed there, however, and Schultz develops a vengeful plot based on Django's expertise as a mandingo fighter and Schultz's desire to purchase such a slave.

If I have to tell you that the violence is severe in a Tarantino film, you've not seen one before. Despite some criticism of the film, considering the setting is 1858 Mississippi makes this story plausible; and Django's hatred of the slave owner is needed to fuel the violent revenge scenario the film sets up for itself.

Unlike some of his past works "Django Unchained" is not predicated strictly on dialogue. There are some great performances starting with Foxx, who perfects an Eastwood-style man-withno name character and is quite skilled at playing the cool-ascan- be bounty hunter. DiCaprio could conceivably get some Oscar admiration for his sadistic slave owner portrayal, which he nails perfectly. Samuel L. Jackson, a Tarantino staple, has a good turn as Candie's head servant who has a terrible hatred of people of his own color. Tarantino even managed to dig up Don Johnson, who has a solid and humorous turn as a plantation owner enjoying the spoils of the south. But the best performance may once again belong to Christopher Waltz, who shine so brightly in Tarantino's "Inglorious Basterds." Waltz delivers much of the humor in the film, as well as the wisdom, to add the levity to the horrors of the slave trade, He and Foxx work brilliantly against each other.

"Django Unchained" is not Tarantino's best film, but a sterling addition to his library; but at just under three hours the director certainly could have left a little more on the cutting room floor. We know pretty much where everything here is going and it may not have needed to be dragged out quite so long. But this still one very entertaining western, and one of the better films this year.