Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Alcatraz: Condemned to Cancelation

Just when these guys start to get interesting, the ratings take
a dive. Hopefully, it will rebound because I could really like
this show!
Even though a new episode of House was a ratings winner, it didn’t help the second episode of Alcatraz which lost 10% of its audience from last week’s two-hour debut. I have watched both episodes and I would say I enjoyed last night’s episode better than the pilot. There was a high creepiness factor that could have put some people off as they were chasing a child killer. It was a bit unsettling. Yet, they laid down some more of the story about the inmates and the people chasing them that pulled me in a bit more. However, now I am worried. I hate to get invested in a show just to have it yanked at the beginning.

The next new show I need to check out is Touch. I loved Kiefer in 24, but, I’ll be honest, not a lot about this show interests me. I’ll give it a shot but I’m not sure I’ll be in it for the long haul

Monday, January 23, 2012

Don't Worry ... Superman is Back in Flight

This is Tracy Morgan's fiancee. I know
right? I couldn't believe it either.
“Superman ran into a little kryptonite. The high altitude in Utah shook up this kid from Brooklyn,” Tracy Morgan tweeted a day after collapsing at Sundance and being rushed to the hospital with ‘exhaustion.’ His publicist was quick to state it was not due to drugs or alcohol.

He was in Colorado to promote his new movie Predisposed costarring Melissa Leo (The Fighter) and Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network). Whatever the reason for Morgan’s condition, he tweeted that he’d be back to work at 30 Rock before the end of the week.

Red Tails Soars at the Box Office

Red Tails soared at the box office over the weekend doing better than expected and bringing in $19.1 million. It was good but not good enough to best the number one film Underworld: Awakening which brought in $25.4 million. Rounding out the top five, Contraband – in its second week  - with $12.2 million, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close 10.5 million (in its first week in wide release) and Haywire with 9 million.

Friday, January 20, 2012

What to See This Weekend

Lots of cuties, but let's face it, no one looks sexy
in WWII uniforms!
Red Tails: The true story of the Tuskegee Airmen comes to the big screen in this film produced by George Lucas and starring Terrence Howard, Cuba Gooding Jr., Tristan Wilds, Nate Parker, David Oyelowo, and Michael B. Jordan.

Haywire: Mixed Martial Artist Gina Carano makes her debut in this action pic that shows that girls can kick ass. Lots of ass.

Underworld: Awakening: If you like your female ass kickers with a splash of the supernatural, see Kate Beckinsdale in the latest in the Underworld movie. This time humans know all about the vampire-werewolf war. It’s also the first in the Underworld saga available in 3-D.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Rachel's Dads Reveals and Last Night's Episode

Rachel's Two Dads
Ever since the first episode, when Rachel revealed she was adopted and raised by an interracial gay couple, Gleeks have wondered who would play her parents. Well, wonder no more. Rachel’s two dads will be played by Jeff Goldblum and Broadway vet Brian Stokes Mitchell. Just about everyone is familiar with Goldblum but Stokes should look familiar to TV watchers. He’s been a frequent guest star on TV shows ranging from The Fresh Prince to Frasier and if you want to go way back, Trapper John M.D. The pair will make their debut on the Glee Valentine’s Day episode!

Last Night's Episode

Emma wasn't the only one with the Wedding Bell
Blues last night!

Last night’s episode was like a cool glass of water after a long drought! Glee oh how I’ve missed thee! Lots of musical numbers and fun. Where to begin????
  • Dame Helen Mirren as the voice of Becky’s inner thoughts! Perfect!
  • Coaches Beiste and Sylvester backing up Emma as she sang The Wedding Bell Blues (loved the bridesmaid’s dresses!)
  • Nene Leakes from The Real Housewives of Atlanta guest starring as synchronized swimming coach Roz Washington. Initially, I had some serious misgivings about Nene’s acting debut but she really did pull it off! Her over-the-top persona was perfect for over-the-top synchronized swimming coach.
  • LOVED Schue’s synchronized swimming proposal. CONFUSED BY song choice: Rihanna’s We Found Love (in a hopeless place). Is it high school that’s a hopeless place or is the hopeless place Emma’s rampant OCD?
  • Corey Monteith stepped up his acting game this week as he found out an ugly truth about the father he’d spent his life idolizing.
Of course it wasn’t all perfection. I loved Samcedes’s homage to Grease with Summer Night’s but it seems the love non-triangle is over as Mercedes realized she wanted Sam during the Rachel/Santana/Mercedes rendition of The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face. At least her boyfriend got about three lines this episode. They will send him packing soon enough though.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Glee Project Season 2

I wonder we'll get to see Sam and if a
single line in an episode counts towards
Damian's 7-episode arc?
I loved it although I didn’t think that many other people did. I guess I was wrong. The Glee Project has been renewed on Oxygen for another season. So far, Damian McGinty as Rory has been underwhelming in his 7-episode arc. I’m wondering do the episode where he has just one line count? We haven’t even seen Sam Larsen yet. But if they are in for another season I guess I am too … if Time Warner will put Oxygen back in their line-up.

Say it Ain't So!

Who should play Liz? Megan? Maybe
Lindsey? Hell no!
Sometimes I think I was born a little bit too late. One of my all-time favorite singers is Ella Fitzgerald. I love her so much that had I had a daughter, I was planning on naming her Ella (Ella Elizabeth but I digress). One of my all-time favorite actresses is Elizabeth Taylor. My favorite movies include Butterfield 8, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Suddenly Last Summer and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf. So I write this with a mix of horror and confusion (a lot of horror and a dash of confusion). Lifetime is planning a movie based on Liz and her epic romance with her Richard Burton. The couple married twice and before his death Burton confessed that Liz was the love of his life.

Up for the role of the iconic Liz Taylor are Megan Fox and … Lindsay Lohan. I have yet to see Megan Fox actually act. She’s good at looking pouty and sexy, but acting? In her favor, is the dark hair and stunning blue eyes (even though Liz’s were violet).  But Lohan? Seriously. She’s not beautiful. She’s not a great actress (and it would take a great actress to pull off a role she clearly isn’t cut out for). She’s probably not even sober. Megan I could live with. Lohan would probably send Liz rolling in her grave.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

What's At the Movies This Weekend

I know it's supposed to be
romantic but this pairing
always struck me as weird
and a little kinky.
Beauty and the Beast 3-D: This isn't a new film. It's the same beloved Disney classic that was released back in 1991, only this time its in 3-D. If you've got young kids, this is a great way to introduce them to a classic.

Contraband: It isn't a good sign when a movie is released with almost no publicity. I watch a lot of TV and I can't even say that I've seen one commercial for this one. Mark Wahlberg plays an ex-con who is drawn back into the world of crime for one last big score. See it at your own risk.

Joyful Noise: Now, I've seen a ton of promotion for this Queen Latifah/Dolly Parton church choir competition and love story. It looks cute. I think however the only reason to really see this film is for the music.

The Iron Lady: This opened in limited release last month (just in time for awards season) and opens wide tomorrow. Meryl Streep is British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. The buzz on this is that Streep could earn another golden statue for this one.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Maybe 3 Really Is A Magic Number!

I've got my fingers crossed!
Good luck!
Sure, she swore she would never marry again after her second marriage failed. However, Halle Berry is hoping that the third time is the charm. She accepted the proposal from French actor Olivier Martinez. The 46-year old actor offered his proposal along with an emerald and diamond engagement ring.

The two met on the set of the film Dark Tides (set to be released later this year) and started dating in 2010.

Berry’s first marriage to baseball player David Justice for four years. Her second marriage to singer Wric Benet lasted two years. She had her 3-year old daughter Nahla with model Gabriel Aubry but the pair never married.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Going Mad without Mad Men?

Fans of AMC's Mad Men (like me) went through an entire year, all of 2011, without a single new episode of Mad Men. We went cold turkey with none of the 60's era chain-smoking, womanizing, alcoholic-beverages-at-lunch that we'd come to know and love.

Well, fans, circle March 25, 2012 on your calendar, because that's the date Mad Men is set to return. Jon Hamm will get behind the camera and direct the first episode of Season Five as well. Hamm said he responded to the directorial challenege "with a mixture of utter fear and excitement."

Well, I have nothing but excitement for the new season. March 25 can't come soon enough!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Kurt and Rachel take Manhattan ... or NOT!

Kurt and Rach have breakfast
at Tiffany's. I mean, it's a jewlery store
not a Starbucks!
If you were looking forward to the rumored spin-off of Glee where Lea Michele’s Rachel Berry and Chris Colfer Kurt Hummel take on New York after graduating from McKinley … oh well. It ain’t gonna happen, says FOX president Kevin Reilly.

However he goes on to say that the principal characters will stay on the show. Exactly how that will happen, we don’t know and he isn’t saying. Hmmmm. He cryptically adds, “"No spin-off, characters graduating, cool season next year."

Baby Blue!

Bey and Jay are all smiles
now that Baby Blue has
Poison Ivy itches and causes a rash. But Blue Ivy? Blue Ivy is all good. That’s the name of the daughter of Beyonce Knowles and Jay-Z. Blue Ivy Carter was born on Saturday. She’s named after her dad’s album, The Blueprint, and mom’s favorite number: 4 (which in Roman numerals is IV – or Ivy). The power couple had an entire floor at Lennox Hill Hospital on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. Reports say reserving the floor cost around $1.3 million.

Jay-Z, the proud poppa was so excited that, of course, he had to rap about it. Here are some of the lyrics from his song, Glory.

The most amazing feeling I feel
Words can't describe the feeling, for real
Maybe I paint the sky blue
My greatest creation was you: Glory

False alarms and false starts
All made better by the sound of your heart
All the pain of the last time
I prayed so hard it was the last time
Your mama said that you danced for her
Did you wiggle your hands for her?
Glory! Glory! Glory! Sorry..
Everything that I prayed for
God's gift, I wish I would've prayed more
God makes no mistakes, I made a few
Rough sledding here and there, but I made it through
I wreak havoc on the world, get ready for part 2
A younger, smarter faster me
So a pinch of Hov, a whole glass of Bé
He goes on to discuss an apparent miscarriage that they’d suffered earlier, “Last time the miscarriage was so tragic/ We was afraid you disappeared/ But nah, baby you magic.”

Beyonce delivered by C-Section, so I imagine she’ll be out for a minute recovering. But,… I’m sure soon after, she’ll be right back in the mix, with Blue Ivy in tow!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

SVU Gets Connick

It had to be you, Harry! Let's hope he
has better luck wooing Det. Olivia
Benson than his creepy predecessors!
I'll be honest. After the first two episodes, I have not been watching SVU, I think that's about to change. Singer/Actor Harry Connick Jr.  will be slipping into the revolving door role of district attorney on Law & Order: SVU. Not only that but he'll also be doing double-duty as a love interest for Mariska Hargitay's Detective Olivia Benson.

He'll play Executive Assistant District Attorney David Haden on multiple episodes. As a huge Connick fan (music and acting), I'm in. It will also be interesting to see how the relationship plays out. I don't think she's ever had a relationship that didn't end badly. One guy was a reporter who sold her out for a story. Another would be suitor ended up being a pedophile. Here's hoping Harry has a more positive outcome.

Ironically, he'll be playing an Executive Assistant District Attorney. His dad, Harry Connick Sr., served as the District Attorney in New Orleans from 1973 to 2003.

Celebrity Apprentice - End of the World Edition

I don't know where the heck
Arsenio's been for the past
15 years, but I don't think
he's been working in
Corporate America. Who
wears a hat in the board room?
Especially that hat!
If the Mayans are right and the world really does end on December 21, 2012 that would mean that this is the last season of Celebrity Apprentice ... or in more dramatic fashion ... the ultimate season of Celebrity Apprentice.

When it premieres on NBC February 12, we'll have the usual D-List where-have-they-been-for-the-past-20-years celebrities, plus the standard cable show/reality stars, the obligatory beauty queen and then a few from the sports world. Of course, there are always a few celebs that I've never heard of before.

Here's the line-up.

•Clay Aiken ("American Idol" runner up, pop star)

•Michael Andretti (IndyCar race car driver)
•Teresa Giudice ("The Real Housewives of New Jersey”)
•Victoria Gotti ("Growing Up Gotti")
•Lisa Lampanelli (comedienne)
•Dayna Mendoza (former Miss Universe)
•Dee Snyder (rock musician)
•Paul Teutul, Sr. ("American Chopper")
•Arsenio Hall (talk show host, comedian)
•Adam Carolla (radio host)
•Lou Ferrigno (bodybuilder, "Incredible Hulk" TV actor)
•Penn Jillette (magician, comedian)
•George Takei ("Star Trek" actor)
•Cheryl Tiegs (supermodel)
•Debbie Gibson (pop star)
•Tia Carrere (actress, singer)
•Aubrey O'Day (singer, "Making the Band")
•Patricia Velásquez (model)

Okay, kudos to whoever found Arsenio Hall. Where the hell has he been? Someone jumped into the time machine and traveled back to bad 80's movies to find Tia Carrere. Then they made a second trip back to the 70's for Lou Ferrigno.
Botox or weight gain? I can't
tell; but I don't think most
executives rock eyeliner
in the board room.
And Clay Aiken, really, I thought he still had somewhat of a career.I guess not.
Never heard of Aubrey O'Day, Patricia Velasquez, Teresa Giudice or Paul Teutel. However, since Teresa is a Real Housewife, I'm expecting her to join Lisa Lampanelli and Victoria Gotti for this season's impromptu Bitch Squad. However, the boys might have their own Bitch Crew if what I've heard about Clay Aiken is true. It will be him, plus Penn Jillette (anyone who's seen him on Bill Maher's show knows what I am talking about) and George Takei (he makes my bitch-dar go off and not it's not because he's gay!).
Should be an interesting season. One thing for sure, I'll be watching!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Yawn! Celebrity Wife Swap

So I tuned into Celebrity Wife Swap the other night, and tuned out shortly afterwards. About 20 minutes in, I started thinking about walking the dog. I picked out my clothes for the next day. I started playing Scrabble on my phone. I was bored.

The great thing about shows like Wife Swap and The Apprentice is that you have real people who have real issues who get really mad (well sometimes they do). They have absolutely nothing to lose. When you start dealing with celebrities, you start dealing with images, perceptions and fan bases. These people, in many cases, have something to lose and it makes for more boring TV.

I thought we’d have some fireworks between Gary Busey and the family of disgraced pastor Ted Haggard. If nothing else, I was counting on GB to bring the crazy. Well, he brought the mildly eccentric and the Haggard’s brought the Christian love as they sought understanding from the Busey’s (and the audience) for ‘the scandal’ (you know, when the pastor was having gay sex with a prostitute and smoking meth). Hell, even Busey and his Indian shaman complete with large feathered headdress, couldn’t get me engaged.

I’m going to need a lot more tension and conflict if I’m going to watch this show. Hopefully, Flava Flav (who knew he was married?) will bring that next week when he swaps wives with Dee Snider of Twisted Sister fame.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Movie Graveyard

January: Where bad movies go to die.
 January. Where bad movies go to be released.

Producers save the blockbusters for summer (actually, they start now in the spring). Adult movies primed for awards season come out in the fall. Of course, a lot of the big family films and a few big movies are held over for the holiday.

But January? January is reserved for the movies no one really wants to see. When I was writing movie reviews for my old site, I looked to January with a mix of dread and anticipation. I dreaded the litany of bad movies I would inevitably sit through, but I enjoyed writing reviews for really crappy movies (I know that's a little sadistic but it is what it is).

So what do we have to look forward to this January?

The Devil Inside: (January 6) Just when you've thought we've seen every angle on exorcisms, here comes another one.Twenty years after her mother brutally slaughtered three people, her daughter wants to know if her mother is criminally insane or demonical possessed? Expect lots of creepy priests and painfully twisted torsos because you know demons love to contort bodies. Oh, and they want  you to believe this is based on a true story. It isn't.

Joyful Noise: (January 13) Queen Latifah has her hits and her misses and I think you know which one I think this is. It co-stars Dolly Parton. Has she been in a decent movie since 9-5 thirty years ago? Anyway, this one is all about the singing (or should I say the sangin'). It even says so on the poster! Of course, it's all about winning the national choir competition. Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton are at odds over which direction the choir should take. Complicating matters is their offspring who have sparks of a different kind going on between them.

Contraband: (January 13) Mark Wahlberg thought he left his criminal past behind him but his brother-in-law is pulling him back in for one final run!

Red Tails: (January 20) It's the story of the Tuskeegee Airman featuring Cuba Gooding Jr. and Terrence Howard. The January release date worries me ... it really worries me.

The Grey: (January 27) A plane crashes in the Alaskan wilderness. Man against man. Man against nature. Man against wolves. Hopefully, man doesn't eat man.That's just gross.

Man on a Ledge: (January 27) It's about a man on a ledge.

One for the Money: (January 27) Katherine Heigl plays a cute lingerie saleswoman turned bail bondsman who has to bring in the one who broke her heart. (roll eyes)

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

What I've Been Watching - TV

Its been a while but I'm back. So let me catch you up on what I've. been up to on my unofficial sabbatical.

Once Upon a Time
From the first episode, this has quickly become one of my favorite shows! I've always been a fan of fairytales and I've been enjoying trying to figure out who the residents of Storybrook really are.

The show provides a wonderful mix of action, romance, intrigue and mystery. Lana Parrilla as the Evil Queen and especially Robert Carlyle as Rumplestilskin are fun to watch and seem to relish in their bad guy roles. Representing good is Jennifer Morrison, the daughter of Prince Charming (Josh Dallas) and Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin). Her 'parents' don't know of their great romance they had in Happily Ever After. They only know of their inexplicably strong attraction to one another.

In the final episode before the holiday hiatus, they actually killed off a popular (and kind of hot) character. That takes guts and I like a show with guts.

The next new episode airs this Sunday January 8 at 8:00 PM (ABC).

American Horror Story
The first season of American Horror Story recently concluded on FX. The brainchild of Glee and Nip/Tuck went into an entirely new direction with AHS and it paid off.

Watching the Harmon family (Dylan McDermott, Connie Britton, Taissa Farmiga) as they navigate the tricky terrain of a house overrun by ghost (most of them malevolent). And, then there is the nutty neighbor Constance Langdon (Jessica Lange) who knows many of the house's horrors.

Watching the story evolve was a treat every week and the ending was surprising to me. Although in retrospect, I should have seen it coming. I guess what was most shocking was Ryan Murphy's revelations after  the finale. He revealed that Season Two would be completely new!

Murphy said, "Every season of the show will be a different haunting. That’s always been the plan. Every season of the show will have a beginning, middle and end, and all new characters and setting. There are all kinds of different American horror stories to tell. There are serial killing stories, prison stories, true crime stories…Each year of the show is designed to be a little miniseries unto itself. The only thing we’re not open to doing is a season on vampires.”

Murphy also said that it's possible that some of the actors will come back for Season Two in completely different roles. While I would love to see McDermott and Britton again, I know there has to be a role for the scene-stealing, Golden Globe nominated Jessica Lange!

What I've Been Watching - Movies

During my time away, I saw Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Mission Impossible 4. Here are my thoughts (in a capsulized version!).

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
In order to enjoy Guy Ritchie's take on the cerebral logic-deducing sleuth, you have to forget everything you ever thought you knew about Holmes: the hat, the pipe, Basil Rathbone, ... all of it. Ritchie's Holmes is a feisty, fighting, hot sexy mess. With that being said, if you can put all that aside, you might be able to enjoy A Game of Shadows. I did. It was supposed to be fun and it was. The chemistry between Holmes (Robert Downey Jr.) and Watson (Jude Law) was so strong that you didn't even miss the lack of any romantic lead. Holmes's friend, Irene Adler (Rachel McAdams) and Kelly Reilly as Watson's soon-to-be-missus barely rated any real screen time. Sherlock Holmes was about the boys with a colorful turn by Stephen Fry as Holmes's brother Mycroft and Jared Harris as the evil Moriarty, Holmes ultimate nemesis.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
I didn't read the book. I never read the book. The movie will never be like the book, so what's the point? An author has pages to describe scenery and characters inner thoughts and dialogues. They can fill the pages with quirky characters. A screenwriter has roughly 120 pages and is limited to dialogue and short bits of action. Having said that, I went into The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo with high hopes. However, while the movie was 'good', it wasn't the 'great' experience I was expecting. I've never seen Rooney Mara before but I enjoyed her performance. As the unstable background investigator she was at turns angry and rage-filled, vulnerable and even loving. This was her show and she carried it well. If she doesn't get a boat=load of nominations during award season, I will be surprised. However, there were some plot twists that I questioned ... maybe because I haven't read the book; however, I shouldn't have to read the book to understand the film. And be warned, there is a brutal rape scene and those always make me uneasy.

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
I have enjoyed the Mission Impossible series and looked forward to seeing this. My friend Kiera and I were part of the Christmas Day throng that filled the theater to see this latest installment. Disguises and action sequences are what MI movies are all about and there were several scenes where the audience audibly gasped. Joined by a new crew, (Jeremy Renner, Paula Patton and Simon Pegg), Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) is out to find out who bombed the Kremlin and to retrieve some rogue nuclear missiles pointed at the US. The stunts were amazing and there were some great action sequences and fight scenes. I loved the first Mission: Impossible but with II and III, I was a little disappointed. Ghost Protocol was up there with the original for me. My dad loves action and I actually recommended this to him.