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Reel Short Take: The Descendants

English: George Clooney at the 2009 Venice Fil...

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This is a short review of a long movie.  The Descendants stars George Clooney.  And he deserves every accolade because he plays a real guy in a bad situation and he runs in the movie to try to solve the problem. That’s part of the trailer I saw when he gets struck by something shocking.

The problem is his wife who lays in a coma the whole movie because she is reckless and got into some kind of ski accident on the water in Hawaii where they live.  Where Clooney is a descendant of a Hawaiian prince and owns lots of land that the family has to decide what to do with.  That’s where the descendants part comes in at.

But where does the love part between he and his wife come in at? We don’t see that we have to only take it on faith that he loved her and they were happy. But I don’t buy it and it makes buying his anger at the affair more difficult too.  It was still well told how a stranger changed his life by sleeping with his wife.

But back to the problem is that he finds his wife was having an affair and he wants to find out who the man was.  He finds him and tracks him and his wife down and does not back down.

Everybody sells real estate in the movie because it’s Hawaii I guess and white people know they can make a lot of money selling real estate there, so they do.

It has a lot of light and funny moments and good dialogue and lots of minutes.  We thought it was a little too long, but it did not try to do too much.  I can give it a solid B. And I can see Clooney getting a nod for best actor.  Can’t see the film getting a nod for best film though.

However I think the laughs and the acting will help.  Despite its sad premise you don’t feel sorry for the family or their loss or anything.  I didn’t see that come across.  It was not sad mostly funny and mostly long.

John Wiley Price—another black official under FBI investigation

According to the county land records I’m looking at, Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price bought nine acres of land on Grady Niblo Road near Mountain Creek Lake in far southwest Dallas from a man named Wayne White on September 3, 2002.

But here’s the curious thing. On that very same day he bought the very same land from his own administrative assistant, Dapheny Fain.

Wait. How can you buy the same land from two different people on the same day? That’s the question. Earlier today I left messages by phone and by email with both Price and Fain and did not hear back from them personally. I did speak with attorneys for both.

Price’s criminal attorney, Bill Ravkind, told me he has “more than two” CPAs combing through all of the commissioner’s real estate transactions over the years. He said he is not able to address questions about any specific transactions yet.

I spoke with Wayne White, who sold the land to Price, and I can understand why Ravkind might want to take his time unraveling this and other deals the commissioner has been involved in.

White is an antiques dealer who once rented space from Danny Faulkner, a legendary figure in the history of Dallas real estate and banking scams. Faulkner was released from prison in 1998 suffering from what was supposed to have been inoperable brain cancer, now in remission. He had served three years and 11 months of a 20-year federal sentence for stealing $100 million from five savings and loans.