Death Cab for Cutie

Cosmopolitan’s Boulevard Pool, Aug. 20

Watching this performance on the Cosmo’s rooftop pool felt like being in a friend’s backyard watching some band practice, except the band happened to be Death Cab for Cutie. They started the show with their iconic song, “I Will Possess Your Heart,” and the crowd slowly swayed back and forth as fog filled the air. Vocalist Ben Gibbard joked about buying music from CD stores as an intro to “Doors Unlocked and Opened,” from their new Codes and Keys album. The quartet danced its way through “Long Division,” which put the crowd into a trance. “What Sarah Said” had everyone screaming, but not for long. Immediately following, Gibbard played the deathly love song, “I Will Follow You Into the Dark,” as an acoustic solo. And then, bam! The band played “Little Bribes,” an upbeat if not ironic ditty about the contradictions of Las Vegas. Death Cab closed with an extended version of “We Looked Like Giants,” filled with guitar riffs and the beats of two separate drum sets—a rockin’ end for a Strip-side pool party.

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Cowboys & Aliens

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Cowboys & Aliens

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Somehow, this blockbuster movie based on the graphic novel works. A desperado (Daniel Craig) wakes up one day in the desert in 1875 with a metallic weapon locked to his forearm and no memory of a recent alien encounter. Uniting with the local townsfolk of Absolution and a Civil War veteran ranch baron played by Harrison Ford, Craig’s cowboy conspires to send the aliens back to their alien land. Director Jon Favreau (Ironman) knows how to get audiences to take absurd conceits seriously. A disarming mash-up.

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