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After being nominated for an Oscar for portraying Gandalf in “The Lord of the Rings,” Ian McKellen again plays the wizard in the prequel trilogy, “The Hobbit.” The new films feature a frame rate of 48 images per second, double the 24 that cinemagoers have experienced for the past century. Reactions to the change have been mixed. (Warner Bros. aia Associated Press)

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Say hello, Assad: See the Navy warships off the coast of Syria

The Navy has sent four warships — USS Ramage, USS Mahan, USS Gravely and USS Barry — armed with ballistic missiles into the eastern Mediterranean Sea amid violence in Syria. Navy ships are capable of a variety of military actions, including launching Tomahawk cruise missiles as they did against Libya in 2011.