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[Weekly Review]

Weekly Review

Coup de Chance, Woody Allen’s 50th film, made its U.S. premiere; its title translates to “stroke of luck,” and a total of 13 theaters elected to show the flick.

Following the Israeli air strike on Damascus, which targeted the Iranian consulate there and resulted in the killing of two generals and at least nine other people, and of which Iran’s foreign minister said that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had “completely lost his mental balance,” the Iranian government launched its first-ever direct attack on Israeli soil.1 2 3 Iran fired a retaliatory succession of 300 drones and missiles at the Golan Heights; 99% of those projectiles missed their mark, having been intercepted by Israel’s defense systems; the remaining 1% of those rockets caused “very little damage” to Israel, said the country’s defense minister, Yoav Gallant, who nonetheless warned that the contretemps was “not over yet.”4 5 6 The Gallant thing to do would be “to establish a strategic alliance against” Iran, he said, citing the participation of U.S. forces in Israel’s repelling the assault.7 In a conversation with Netanyahu, President Joe Biden disabused the prime minister of the notion of their forming any such axis; the United States will not join an offensive counterstrike on Iran, he said.8 In the West Bank, Israeli settlers initiated the largest-scale rampage since Israel’s war on Gaza began; arsonists set ablaze dozens of homes and motor vehicles, after which the Israeli Defense Forces stalled the advance of an ambulance conveying the corpse of a Palestinian who had been killed in the attacks to a burial ground; it was not clear whether the man had been shot by a settler or by a soldier.9 10 Palestinians began to tear down the wall that divides portions of the occupied West Bank from the rest of the land; the wall is some 708 kilometers long, and a German commissioner for combating anti-Semitism was censured for sharing a tweet that read “Mr. Netanyahu, Tear Down This Wall!”11 12

Former President Donald Trump was interrupted while campaign stumping by the eruption of chants from a crowd in Pennsylvania: “Genocide Joe! Genocide Joe!,” they intoned, in reference to President Biden’s handling of U.S. ally Israel’s war on Gaza, which has seen the death of some 34,000 Palestinians.13 14 “They’re not wrong,” Trump replied when the cries died down.15 The actor Dwayne Johnson, known also for his wrestling body of work under the name “The Rock,” announced that he would not renew his endorsement of Biden’s presidency, which he first issued in 2020.16 Liz Truss, the erstwhile and shortest-serving prime minister of Britain, endorsed a Trump presidency; “It has to be” him, the Conservative Party official said of her preference for the next occupant of the White House.17 It was determined that the Democratic Party lost its recent edge among voters, and the director Alex Garland’s movie about a modern-day American civil war was released in theaters to the highest-grossing opening weekend for any film from its studio.18 19 20

Coup de Chance, Woody Allen’s 50th film, made its U.S. premiere; its title translates to “stroke of luck,” and a total of 13 theaters elected to show the flick.21 Francis Ford Coppola screened his movie Megalopolis for studio executives; he funded the production through the $500 million sale of his wine company, though the film as yet has failed to attract financiers; “It’s so not good, and it was so sad watching it,” said one would-be investor, who passed on the project.22 23 24 David Lynch’s co-writer for the script of Snootworld, which is still seeking financing, described its plot as “wackadoo”; John Waters announced that he had adapted his “feel-bad romance” novel Liarmouth for the screen, but that he could not secure funding for it.25 26 South Korea’s election night featured short animated films that rendered candidates and hopefuls in a series of K-pop dance routines and other fantasias, including a drag race redolent of Mad Max.27 The rapper GMac Cash made a music video for the diss track he penned about the unveiling, in Detroit, of signage that was promised to be in the style of California’s Hollywood sign but which he found underwhelming; “I think I’ve seen a bigger sign at a graduation,” he rapped; among other songs in his discography is one about the prevalence of potholes in his neighborhood.28 29 The AI software company Runway announced the second-annual convening of its AI Film Festival.30Lake Micah

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