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  • Movie Review: AS ABOVE, SO BELOW

    Entertaining and erudite, although increasingly incoherent

  • Movie Review: THE NOVEMBER MAN

    A spy thriller that seems to have lost some clues in translation

  • Blu-ray review: PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE

    This quirky 1974 Brian De Palma film looks better than ever

  • Exclusive Interview: INTRUDERS show runner Glen Morgan

    The E.P. talks his new series, plus what happened with THOSE WHO KILL

  • Exclusive: MASTERS OF SEX star Caitlin FitzGerald

    The actress talks her complicated role on Season 2 of the Showtime series

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SPOTLIGHT Magnify

MASTERS OF SEX star Michael Sheen talks Season 2

Michael Sheen stars on MASTERS OF SEX Season 2 | © 2014 Showtime

MASTERS OF SEX, now in its second season, Sunday nights on Showtime, dramatizes the story of real-life sexual pioneers William Masters, played by Michael Sheen, and Virginia Johnson, played by Lizzy Caplan. In addition to embarking on their studies in the 1950s, when the subject was almost forbidden, Masters and Johnson had quite complicated personal lives. At the time we meet them, Masters is married to the devoted Libby (Caitlin FitzGerald), who resorts to somewhat drastic means to have a baby with her husband; Johnson is a twice-divorced mother of two. At Masters’ suggestion, he and Johnson embark on sexual …Read On »

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Movie Review: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY | © 2014 Walt Disney Pictures/Marvel

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Lee Pace, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan Writers: James Gunn and Nicole Perlman, based on the comic books by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning Director: James Gunn Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures/Marvel Release Date: August 1, 2014 For a while, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY teeters on an edge. Yes, the visuals are striking and the jokes are funny, but at first, between self-centered thief Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), extremely angry Gamora (Zoe Saldana), dismissive genetically-modified raccoon Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper) and walking tree-of-few-words Groot (Vin Diesel), we’re not …Read On »

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Movie Review: GET ON UP

GET ON UP | © 2014 Universal Pictures

Rating: PG-13 Stars: Chadwick Boseman, Nelsan Ellis, Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer, Dan Aykroyd Writers: Jez Butterworth & John-Henry Butterworth, story by Steven Baigelman and Jez Butterworth & John-Henry Butterworth Director: Tate Taylor Distributor: Universal Pictures Release Date: August 1, 2014 The late soul singer/entertainer James Brown was known as “the hardest-working man in show business” and the biographical drama with music GET ON UP shows us why in detail. It is also consistently entertaining and intermittently moving, but by the end, we realize that it hasn’t been all that illuminating. We see Brown’s traumatic childhood, which suggests the adult Brown …Read On »

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SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE star Judah Friedlander takes a bite out of sharks

Judah Friedlander as Bryan in SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE | © 2014 Eric Liebowitz/Syfy

Judah Friedlander spent seven seasons playing Frank Rossitano on NBC’s 30 ROCK. Since NBC and Syfy Channel have the same parent company, NBC/Universal, it’s perhaps not totally surprising that the Maryland-born actor/comedian – whose many other credits include the films AMERICAN SPLENDOR, MEET THE PARENTS and THE WRESTLER – wound up in Syfy Channel’s SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE. However, as Friedlander explains at a party thrown by NBC/Universal Television for the press, it wasn’t a case of anybody at either network approaching him about the sequel, which concerns a Sharknado hitting New York City. “I went to them. I …Read On »

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TV Review: TRUE BLOOD – Season 7 – “Death is Not the End”

Pam (Kristin Bauer van Straten) confronts her old employee in TRUE BLOOD "Death is Not the End" | © 2014 John P. Johnson/HBO

Stars: Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Sam Trammell, Ryan Kwanten, Rutina Wesley, Alexander Skarsgard, Chris Bauer, Kristin Bauer van Straten, Amelia Rose Blaire, Lauren Bowles, Tara Buck, Anna Camp, Nelsan Ellis, Jim Parrack, Gregg Daniel, Aaron Christian Howles, Noah Matthews, Bailey Noble, Jim Parrack, Nathan Parsons,  Adina Porter, Carrie Preston, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Deborah Ann Woll, Karolina Wydra, Robert Patrick, Tara Buck, Zeljko Ivanek Writer: Daniel KennethBrian Buckner, series created by Alan Ball, based on Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse novels Director: Greg Fienberg Network: HBO, Sundays @ 9 PM Airdate: July 13, 2013 Maybe it takes the action in “Death is Not …Read On »

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Movie Review: PREMATURE

PREMATURE | © 2014 IFC Midnight

Rating: R Stars: John Karna, Katie Findlay, Craig Roberts, Carlson Young, Adam Reigler, Alan Tudyk Writers: Dan Beers & Matthew Harawitz Director: Dan Beers Distributor: IFC Midnight Release Date: July 25, 2014 theatrical; July 2, 2014 VOD PREMATURE starts out as a teen sex comedy with a GROUNDHOG DAY twist. High school senior Rob Crabbe (John Karna) is about to meet with the admissions dean (Alan Tudyk) of Georgetown University, which was attended by both of Rob’s parents. Alas, the meeting goes badly. Then hot classmate Angela (Carlson Young) persuades Rob to miss his standing spelling bee-watching date with his …Read On »

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Ian Ziering grabs the chainsaw again in SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE

Ian Ziering reprises his role as Fin Shepard in SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE | © 2014 Eric Liebowitz/Syfy

In 2013’s surprise hit SHARKNADO, Ian Ziering played heroic Fin Shepard, who almost single-handedly – with a chainsaw in that hand – saved Los Angeles from a tornado full of sharks. In SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE, which premieres on Syfy Channel Wednesday, July 30, Ziering is back as Fin. Fin and reconciled ex-wife April Wexler (Tara Reid, also reprising her original SHARKNADO role) are on their way to New York City to promote April’s book about surviving the previous year’s event. However, they don’t even land in the Big Apple before they’re once again grappling with storm-borne Great Whites, …Read On »

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Judd Hirsch takes a bite out of SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE

Judd Hirsch and Dante Palmenteri in SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE | courtesy Dante Palmenteri

A strange coincidence has landed Judd Hirsch at Syfy Channel’s Beverly Hilton poolside screening of SHARKNADO 2: THE SECOND ONE for the benefit of the Television Critics Association press tour. The sequel to last summer’s surprise Syfy hit is being projected onto a gigantic blank wall next to the pool prior to its Syfy Channel premiere on Wednesday, July 30. The atmosphere is deliberately drive-in theatre, with couches decorated to look like car seats and popcorn and soda stations (as well as regular drive-in dinner fare). Hirsch was nominated for an Supporting Actor Oscar for his work in ORDINARY PEOPLE, …Read On »

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THE STRAIN creator Guillermo del Toro on his new nasty vamp series

Jack Kesy as Gabriel Bolivar in THE STRAIN | © 2014 Michael Gibson/FX

FX’s new series THE STRAIN, Sundays at 10 PM, brings horror back to the vampire mythology. Forget the charmers of TRUE BLOOD, BEING HUMAN, et al, or even Bela Lugosi – these things are hideous, terrifying and breeding like Ebola virus. Worse, they’re in New York City. Center for Disease Control researchers Ephraim Goodweather (Corey Stoll) and Nora Martinez (Mia Maestro) want to combat the plague, but so far aren’t sure how to do so; pawn shop owner Abraham Setrakian (David Bradley), who’s had experience with the creatures before, and city exterminator Vasily Fet (Kevin Durand) may have some ideas. …Read On »

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Go Deep with David Rees on his how-to Series on NatGeo

David Rees stars in Going Deep with David Rees | © 2014 NatGeo

National Geographic Channel’s GOING DEEP WITH DAVID REES, Mondays nights at 10 and 10:30 PM, is, as host and co-creator Rees says, “an honest to God how-to show.” GOING DEEP explores in depth things people tend to take for granted, like how to open doors, tie shoelaces and make ice cubes. During National Geographic’s portion of the Television Critics Association press tour, Rees sits down to delve into GOING DEEP. AX: How did you get into the idea of studying the origins of everything? DAVID REES: I had an artisanal pencil-sharpening business and I got a book deal to write …Read On »

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