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Children are plagued by the occasional certainty that there's a monster in their basement, if not right under their bed, and they're almost always wrong. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, the follow-up to 2015's mediocre but hugely successful revival of the Jurassic franchise, is the exception that proves the rule.

The following baseball terms apply to The Catcher Was a Spy, a modestly appointed biopic about Moe Berg, a major-league-catcher-turned-OSS-agent during World War II: "Down the middle," "a can of corn," "passed ball," "below the Mendoza line," "designated for assignment."

In other words, it's a consistent underachiever, as washed-out and terminally mediocre as Berg himself was at the end of his long stint in the majors. Or, to quote a favorite schoolyard taunt: We want a catcher, not a belly scratcher. And there's an abundance of belly scratching going on in this film.

"Not another Elvis movie," you scream at the heavens in the year 2018. "The man's been dead for four decades. Every part of him has been strip-mined for white-nostalgia money already. My parents just dragged me to the touring production of Million Dollar Quartet. Show some mercy, people."

First of all: point taken. Secondly: don't be cruel. You haven't seen The King yet. And you're going to want to. Oh, yes.

To rescue his kidnapped fiancee, an earnest dandy rides into the wilderness, accompanied by a fake preacher and a miniature horse. That's the setup for Damsel, a deadpan farce filmed on the rocky Utah turf of classic John Ford Westerns. David and Nathan Zellner are on another cinematic quest.

The White House unveiled a plan Thursday to merge the Education and Labor departments into a single Cabinet agency: the Department of Education and the Workforce. The proposal is part of a 132-page document outlining a broad restructuring of the federal government. The changes would require congressional approval.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

The teen summer job is a vaunted tradition...one that is fading. Today's teenagers just aren't working at nearly the same rates as older generations did. Today we explore why, even with really low unemployment, the teen job market isn't picking up more. Some of it is because teens don't want to work, but some of it is also because employers don't want to employ them.

Music: "Black Surf Duel"

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Some online sales are about to start costing more.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday that states can require retailers to collect and remit sales taxes on out-of-state purchases. The 5-to-4 decision reversed decades-old decisions that protected out-of-state vendors from sales tax obligations unless the vendor had a physical presence in the state.

A Canadian mining firm says it will move forward with plans to mine minerals from land that was previously part of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Utah.

As President Trump faced growing outrage over his child detention policy on the U.S.-Mexico border, conservative outlets like Fox News and Breitbart scrambled to his defense. They urged Trump to stand firm, describing the forced separation of migrant children from their families as part of a strategy to keep America's borders safe.

China is threatening to impose new tariffs on lobsters from the U.S. in what could be the latest volley in a growing trade war. But the American lobster industry is already starting to feel the impact of steel tariffs imposed by the Trump administration.

Bob Morris opens the bulkhead doors to his basement in Rockport, Massachusetts, and heads down into his workshop. Morris is a lifelong lobsterman, and when he's not out hauling lobster traps, he's building them in his basement.

Seated in the Oval Office on Wednesday, flanked by his vice president and secretary of homeland security, President Trump walked back an administration practice that has separated more than 2,300 children from their parents along the border.

The Plight Of The Living Dead

Jun 20, 2018

For the U.S. government, keeping track of who's alive and who's not is important. There are after all a lot of benefits associated with being alive — Medicare, Social Security benefits, voting. But the system for confirming who's actually dead is far from foolproof.

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