Reviews

Movie Review: POSEIDON REX

POSEIDON REX | © 2014 ITN Distribution

Rating: Not Rated Stars: Brian Krause, Anne McDaniels, Steven Helmkamp, Candice Nunes, Berne Velasquez, Gildon Roland Writer: Rafael Jordan Director: Mark L. Lester Distributor: ITN Distribution Release Date: Theatrical, April 18, 2014; DVD/VOD, May 13, 2014 Low-budget creature features have a formula. The best ones either find ways to play with it or else embrace it to the hilt. POSEIDON REX simply abides by the formula without sprucing it up, goofing on it or doing anything to stand out from the pack. This would be okay if it were at least livelier, but whenever the title beast is off-screen, things …Read On »

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Movie Review: TRANSCENDENCE

TRANSENDENCE | © 2014 Warner Bros.

Stars: Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Paul Bettany, Cillian Murphy, Morgan Freeman Writer: Jack Paglen Director: Wally Pfister Distributor: Warner Bros. Release Date: April 18, 2014 TRANSCENDENCE tackles some huge ideas. What is consciousness? Can consciousness be proved? How can we prove our identity? What, for others, constitutes acceptable, valuable proof? And that’s before Jack Paglen’s script takes on the huge issues of whether some loss of autonomy is an acceptable trade-off for life and health. These issues don’t just get lip service but form much of the narrative spine of TRANSCENDENCE, and for the better part of the film, it …Read On »

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CD Review: QB VII soundtrack

QB VII soundtrack | ©2013 Prometheus Records

Back in the day, television movies-cum-miniseries weren’t just films for free. They were often multi-night events that tried to rival the big screen for its epic, star-filled scope and serious subject matter, hiring top-flight Hollywood composers and affording them the cinematic resources and creativity to rival their widescreen work. One particular musician who benefitted from the networks’ most prestigious offerings was Jerry Goldsmith, who’d started out with series like DR. KILDARE and THE TWILIGHT ZONE before taking home Emmy wins for THE RED PONY, BABE and MASADA. But it was arguably 1974s QB VII that gave Goldsmith his most stirring …Read On »

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TV Review: MARVEL’S AGENTS OF SHIELD – Season 1 – “Providence”

Bill Paxton as John Garrett on AGENTS OF SHIELD | © 2014 ABC/Justin Lubin

Cast: Clark Gregg, Ming-Na wen, Brett Dalton, Chloe Bennet, Elizabeth Henstridge, Iain De Caestecker Director: Milan Cheylov Network: Airs on ABC Tuesdays @ 8 p.m. Original Telecast: April 15, 2014 Warning there are probably spoilers to CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLIDER inside. Obviously a lot has happened over the course of the last few episodes of MARVEL’S AGENTS OF SHIELD. There was the whole Hydra taking over thing and the collapse of S.H.I.E.L.D. as a result, Nick Fury is dead (presumably), Agent Ward (Brett Dalton) has revealed his true self as a Hydra agent and the rest of Agent Coulson’s …Read On »

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CD Review: THE YOUNG SAVAGES soundtrack

THE YOUNG SAVAGES soundtrack | ©2014 Intrada Records

Taking his place among such be bopin’ jazz artists as Miles Davis (ELEVATOR TO THE GALLOWS) who were recruited to the far more defined style of film scoring, David Amram made a powerful feature debut in 1961s THE YOUNG SAVAGES, for which director John Frankenheimer took the BLACKBOARD JUNGLE aesthetic to even rawer territory as caring cop Burt Lancaster finds there’s more than meets than eye in a group of racist white toughs killing of a blind Puerto Rican kid. Sure jazz has always been the sound of juvenile delinquency since the late 40s, but leave it to a true …Read On »

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CD Review: AUGUST OSAGE COUNTY soundtrack

AUGUST OSAGE COUNTY soundtrack | ©2014 Sony Classical

The STEEL MAGNOLIAS formula gets an edge in Tracy Letts’ dysfunctional Oklahoma family fireworks. It’s an explosive all-star duel of acting drawls that gets served up with an unexpectedly subtle throw-down soundtrack, serving up a tasty mix of southern rock tunes and evocative scoring. On the first count, there’s a dreamy mix of guitar and strings to Bon Iver’s “Hinnom, TX,” while an unplugged Kings of Leon strums a longing “Last Mile Home.” John Fullbright delivers the blues-rock of “Gawd Above,” while JD & The Straight Shot’s gentle “Violet’s Song” evokes the defiant family ties that bind. Even Sherlock Holmes …Read On »

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TV Review: GAME OF THRONES – Season 4 – “The Lion and the Rose”

Alfie Allen, Iwan Rheon in GAME OF THRONES - Season 4 - "The Lion and the Rose" | ©2014 HBO/Helen Sloan

Stars: Peter Dinklage, Lena Headey, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Emilia Clarke, Iain Glen, Kit Harington, Sophie Turner, Maisie Williams, Isaac Hempstead-Wright, Kristian Nairn, Thomas Sangster, Ellie Kendrick, Diana Rigg, Stephen Dillane, Carice Van Houten, Liam Cunningham, Alfie Allen, John Bradley, Jack Gleeson, Charles Dance, Rory McCann, Sibel Kekilli, Natalie Dormer, Gwendoline Christie, Conleth Hill, Julian Glover, Rose Leslie, Jerome Flynn, Ian McElhinnie, Daniel Portman, Nathalie Emmanuel, Jacob Anderson, Hannah Murray, Peter Vaughan, Kristofer Hivju, Pedro Pascal, Indira Varma, Michiel Huisman, Dominic Carter, Anton Lesser, Tony Way, Michael McElhatton, Iwan Rheon, Noah Taylor, Tara Fitzgerald, Kerry Ingram Writer: George R.R. Martin, series created …Read On »

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TV Review: BONES – Season 9 – “The Turn in the Urn”

Brennan (Emily Deschanel, L) and Booth (David Boreanaz, R) in BONES - Season 9 - "The Turn in the Urn" | ©2014 Fox/Patrick McElhenney

Stars: David Boreanaz, Emily Deschanel, Michaela Conlin, Tamara Taylor, TJ Thyne, John Francis Daley, Luke Kleintank, Tiffany Hines, John Sloan, Joanna Pacula, Christine Ann Burson, Anjali Bhimani Writer: Pat Charles, series created by Hart Hanson, based on the life and writings of Kathy Reichs Director: Tim Southam Network: Fox, Mondays @ 8 PM Airdate: March 31, 2014 BONES is in its ninth season, and by now, most of its episodes tend to focus on the characters, with the case of the week functioning as back story and sounding board for whatever is going on with the people. However, “The Turn …Read On »

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CD Review: BONNIE & CLYDE soundtrack

BONNIE & CLYDE soundtrack | ©2013 La La Land Records

Having helped to blast away the ratings for The History Channel’s HATFIELDS & McCOYS with an energetic, rural score (co-composed with Tony Morales) for a post Civil War blood feud, John Debney gets to jump ahead a few decades for more upscale backwoods violence, courtesy of BONNIE & CLYDE. But where them other fightin’ families definitely were lacking in the glamour department, Debney’s musical canvas is increased exponentially by having two jazz age killer kids at his disposal – criminals who wanted to be stars of their own body-splattered “reality” show that made them antisocial media darlings. Debney spectacularly weds …Read On »

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TV Review: BEING HUMAN – Season 4 – “There Goes the Neighborhood 3” – Series Finale

Sam Huntington as Josh Levison, Sam Witwer as Aidan Waite, Kristen Hager as Nora Sergeant in BEING HUMAN - Season 4 | ©2014 Syfy/Pana Pantazidis

Stars: Sam Witwer, Meaghan Rath, Sam Huntington, Kristen Hager, Helen Colliander, Sergio DeZio Writer: Anna Fricke, adapted for U.S. television by Jeremy Carver & Anna Fricke, created for U.K. television by Toby Whithouse Director: Stefan Pleczynski Network: Syfy, Mondays @ 9 PM Airdate: April 7, 2014 When the U.S./Syfy Channel version of BEING HUMAN premiered in 2011 with “There Goes the Neighborhood 1 & 2,” it seemed almost a photocopy of its U.K./BBC predecessor – a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost are roommates. Additionally, the U.S. version seemed to have less humor and more self-pity and sulking among its …Read On »

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