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Until then, the plot’s a trifle about dim-witted Hollywood star Baird Whitlock (George Clooney, mugging up a storm), who is kidnapped by radicals from the writers guild, creating a mess that only fedora-donning studio fixer Eddie Mannix (a one-note Josh Brolin) can clean up. In between finessing the pregnancy of a starlet (a nicely hard-boiled Scarlett Johansson) and fending off Hedda Hopper-ish twin gossip columnists, Thora and Thessaly Thacker (each played by a wonderfully witchy Tilda Swinton), Mannix foils the guild’s evil communist plot and keeps the studio humming like a beehive. The pompous narration doesn’t help matters, as the tone of the film veers wildly from noir to nonsense while peppered with a nonstop lineup of cameos ranging from Frances McDormand (a Coen brothers stalwart) to Jonah Hill.

To be sure, the Coen brothers spared no expense on the epic production numbers, It’s hard to resist the pleasures of a chiseled Channing Tatum as the dapper Burt Gurney getting his tap dance on in the manner of Gene Kelly, The homoerotic bits of the sailor dance number are cheeky, and Ralph Fiennes is a stitch as a posh director roped into casting a cowboy in a drawing room picture, But for the most part, the filmmakers’ gags fall flat, There are quite clearance pointe shoes a few scenes involving a studio-invented romance between dopey cowboy star Hobie (Alden Ehrenreich) and perky Carmen Miranda look-alike Carlotta (Veronica Osorio) that are utterly mystifying in their total lack of chemistry or drollery or subtext..

Johansson, all dolled up in period finery, has the glamour to give the picture juice, but she’s not on screen enough. Even Clooney squanders his dapper appeal as the buffoon Baird, a hard-partying star so easily duped he almost renounces fame and fortune for a little quality time debating Hegel with the kidnappers. There’s none of the juicy suspense of nabbings and ransoms past, such as “Raising Arizona” or “The Big Lebowski.” Even the “Ben-Hur”-style action sequences, which should burst with rousing action, feel less than epic to an eye weaned on the blood-splattered pageants of “Game of Thrones.”.

Like most parents, she was nervous about putting her 12-year-old daughter, Emma, in a car with a complete stranger, But Aluise, 49, was in a bind: The Westwood realtor clearance pointe shoes was struggling to juggle her full-time job with chauffeuring her daughter to and from swim and surf practices, She was spending almost $200 a week on baby-sitters to help shuttle her daughter around, “It was stressful,” she said, “I was in a panic.”, Up in the Bay Area, Mary Inman had a similar problem, Both she and her husband work full time, Their sons, Miles, 14, and Devin, 9, had afterschool activities on different sides of town, She’d heard of a service called Shuddle — often described as an Uber or Lyft for kids — and decided to check it out..

More than a year later, Aluise and Inman are frequent and loyal HopSkipDrive and Shuddle customers (the former is only available in Los Angeles County, while the latter is available only in the Bay Area). Thousands of parents use the services every day. The niche market is growing, and investors have taken notice. In January, HopSkipDrive announced a $10.2 million funding round, led by venture capital firm Firstmark Capital. The Los Angeles company also snapped up the former general manager of Uber L.A., Eyal Gutentag, to be its operations chief.

Meanwhile, Shuddle raised $9.6 million last May, led by RRE Ventures, One reason investors have taken to HopSkipDrive and Shuddle: They specialize in transporting children, clearance pointe shoes giving them an advantage over the saturated ride-hailing market for adults, which is dominated by Uber and, to a lesser extent, Lyft, When it comes to transporting children, the stakes are extremely high, The companies need to think about safety and security differently, and they need to earn the trust of passengers (kids) and customers (parents)..

Whereas taxi, limo and other on-demand transportation services have been able to weather bad press about reckless drivers and passenger assaults, services involving children have little room for error. “We have a unique challenge in making sure we’re not just a ride; we are caregivers that also provide rides, and that’s an important distinction,” said HopSkipDrive Chief Executive Joanna McFarland. “It’s not just a curb-to-curb ride. We help young kids get signed in and out of schools, so it’s a lot more than that.”.

“We also have to think about growth very differently than an Uber or TaskRabbit or Instacart,” said Shuddle Chief Executive Doug Aley, “For us, if we don’t keep supply and clearance pointe shoes demand in balance, the consequences for us are much different than not being able to deliver someone’s groceries on time, If we get it wrong, we can strand a kid.”, To that end, both services have expanded much more slowly than other app-based transportation services, In the L.A, area, HopSkipDrive has around 500 drivers, Shuttle declined to reveal its driver count, In comparison, Uber and Lyft have tens of thousands of drivers in L.A alone..


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