Reviews

TV Review: SUPERNATURAL – Season 10 – “The Prisoner”

Dean (Jensen Ackles) in Supernatural "The Prisoner" | © 2015 The CW/Diyah Pera

Stars: Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, Misha Collins, Mark A. Sheppard, Ruth Connell, Markus Flanagan, David Hoflin, Connor Pree, Matt Bellefleur Writer: Andrew Dabb, series created by Eric Kripke Director: Thomas J. Wright Network: The CW, Wednesdays @ 9 PM Original Airdate: May 13, 2015 Most shows (barring those starring evil vampires) don’t let their lead characters go where Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles) winds up in “The Prisoner.” Actually, this is arguably the darkest SUPERNATURAL has gone with either Winchester – yes, Castiel (Misha Collins) has gone darker, but he was a deity at the time, and Crowley (Mark A. Sheppard) …Read On »

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Movie Review: THE VATICAN TAPES

THE VATICAN TAPES | © 2015 Lionsgate

Rating: R Stars: Olivia Dudley, Michael Pena, Kathleen Robertson, Djimon Hounsou, Dougray Scott, John Patrick Amedori, Peter Andersson Writer: Christopher Borrelli, story by Chris Morgan and Christopher Borrelli Director: Mark Neveldine Distributor: Lionsgate Release Date: July 24, 2015 Exorcism films run the gamut. At the high end, there’s the William Peter Blatty/William Friedkin 1973 classic THE EXORCIST and more financially modest but tremendously effective efforts like THE LAST EXORCISM. At the low end is some truly astonishing schlock. THE VATICAN TAPES is well-made enough to stay out of the latter category, but as an exorcism horror film – or any …Read On »

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Movie Review: SOUTHPAW

SOUTHPAW | © 2015 The Weinstein Co.

Rating: R Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Forest Whitaker, Rachel McAdams, Oona Laurence, Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, Naomie Harris, Miguel Gomez Writer: Kurt Sutter Director: Antoine Fuqua Distributor: The Weinstein Co. Release Date: July 24, 2015 SOUTHPAW has one big plot twist the unspoiled may not see coming. Otherwise, even though it’s scripted by SONS OF ANARCHY creator Kurt Sutter, this boxing drama is solid but standard fare. Jake Gyllenhaal stars as boxing champ Billy Hope, whose victories are fueled by rage. However, when he’s outside the ring, his life revolves around beloved wife Mo (Rachel McAdams) and precocious daughter Leila (Oona …Read On »

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Blu-ray and DVD Reviews for the Week of July 14, 2015

EX MACHINA | © 2015 Lionsgate Home Entertainment

Your time is short. We know this. So in order to expedite your buying and Netflix decision making, we provide you with a list of the cool and not-so-cool titles coming out for movies, television and everything in-between. So put your feet up, grab some popcorn and check out this week’s selections. Movies: EX MACHINA – There have been a number of interesting films that delve into the artificial intelligence/robot aspect and how they would act if they ever became self-aware. EX MACHINA does a great job of not treading on any of the territory that these other films have …Read On »

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MINIONS: Composer Heitor Pereira gives Groo’s hench-things a swinging ’60s spy-pop groove

MINIONS | ©2015 Universal Pictures

While the films he scores might not have to do much with his homeland of Brazil (even if they’re filled with yellow characters with mad love for a certain tropical fruit), there’s most often a joyous, rhythmic energy that fills the soundtracks of Heitor Pereira. With a surfeit of kids’ movies to his credits, Pereira’s lovably bouncy, melodically eccentric scores are the equivalent of smurfs, chimps and Chihuahuas, all jumping for joy and lapping your face. They’ve got enough unrestrained, clever fun to put an energetic smile on anyone’s face, perhaps most notably one super villain hell-bent on being the …Read On »

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Movie Review: TRAINWRECK

Trainwreck | © 2015 Universal Pictures

Rating: R Stars: Amy Schumer, Bill Hader, Tilda Swinton, Vanessa Bayer, LeBron James, Brie Larson, John Cena, Colin Quinn, Norman Lloyd, Mike Birbiglia, Randall Park, Ezra Miller Writer: Amy Schumer Director: Judd Apatow Distributor: Universal Release Date: July 17, 2015 Somewhere between a character study and a semi-unconventional romcom, TRAINWRECK is more funny and enjoyable than not. Its politics aside (what’s one more female screen protagonist primarily defined by her approach to romance at this late date?), Amy Schumer’s script tries to keep us on our toes while getting us to laugh and make us uncomfortable, all at the same …Read On »

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Movie Review: ANT-MAN

Ant-Man | © 2015 Disney

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Paul Rudd, Michael Douglas, Evangeline Lilly, Corey Stoll, Bobby Cannavale, Michael Pena, Tip “T.I.” Harris, Wood Harris, Judy Greer, David Dastmalian, Abby Ryder Fortsom Writers: Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish and Adam McKay & Paul Rudd, story by Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish, based on the comic books created by Stan Lee & Larry Lieber & Joe Kirby Director: Peyton Reed Distributor: Disney Release Date: July 17, 2015 Although it is unmistakably from the Marvel stable, ANT-MAN is sometimes reminiscent of films from another of distributor Disney’s partners, Pixar. With its cheerful sense of goofiness and acute …Read On »

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TV Review: SUPERNATURAL – Season 10 – “Dark Dynasty”

Jensen Ackles as Dean in SUPERNATURAL | © 2015 Katie Yu/The CW

Stars: Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, Misha Collins, Mark A. Sheppard, Felicia Day, Ruth Connell, Markus Flanagan, David Hoflin, Matt Bellefleur Writers: Eugenie Ross-Leming & Brad Buckner, series created by Eric Kripke Director: Robert Singer Network: The CW, Wednesdays @ 9 PM Original Airdate: May 6, 2015 SUPERNATURAL combines real seriousness and real silliness in “Dark Dynasty,” a title that works on its own (as opposed to being simply a riff on another TV show or film, which sometimes happens here). We lose a major and well-loved (by most) character, we find out the resonant mythic background of the evil and …Read On »

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TV Review: BONES – Season 10 – “The Lost in the Found”

Emily Deschanel as Brennan in BONES "The Lost in the Found" | © 2015 Patrick McElhenney/FOX

Stars: David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel, Michaela Conlin, TJ Thyne, Tamara Taylor, John Boyd, Carla Gallo, Alysia Reiner, China Ann McClain, McKaley Miller, Brielle Barbusca, Adam William Zastrow Writer: Emily Silver, series created by Hart Hanson, based on the life and writings of Kathy Reichs Director: Jeannot Szwarc Network: Fox, Thursdays @ 8 PM Airdate: May 7, 2015 On the one hand, “The Lost in the Found” does a good job of exploring teen depression, bullying and suicide. On the other hand, in its tenth season, BONES chalks up a major fail by stretching credibility past the breaking point when it …Read On »

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Movie Review: SELF/LESS

SELF/LESS movie poster | ©2015 Focus Features

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Ryan Reynolds, Natalie Martinez, Matthew Goode, Ben Kingsley, Victor Garber, Derek Luke, Jaynee-Lynne Kinchen, Michelle Dockery Writers: David Pastor & Alex Pastor Director: Tarsem Singh Distributor: Focus Features/Gramercy Pictures Release Date: July 10, 2015 There are a number of problems with SELF/LESS, but much could have been forgiven if the movie had gotten one thing right. Anyone who has seen the trailer knows that the set-up consists of dying billionaire Damian Hale (Ben Kingsley) paying a huge amount of money to have his consciousness put into another body (Ryan Reynolds). The body in question is reportedly lab-grown, …Read On »

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