Reviews

TV Review: THE WALKING DEAD – Season 1 – “Wildfire”

Zombies from THE WALKING DEAD - Season 1 | © 2010 AMC

In the penultimate episode of THE WALKING DEAD, Rick (Andrew Lincoln) leads the survivors on a desperate odyssey back into the lions’ – well, zombies’ – den, as they head for the Center for Disease Control and possible salvation for the now-infected Jim (Andrew Rothenberg). It seems impossible that anyone could have made it through the collapse of the city, and yet deep beneath the streets one lone scientist (Noah Emmerich) on the brink of insanity may be all that stands between our heroes and a more horrific end to their journey.

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Music Review: THE TING TINGS – “Hands E.P.”

THE TING TING'S - HANDS E.P.

If Blondie had a baby it would be The Ting Tings, the irresistible electro-pop duo fronted by eclectic noisemakers Jules De Martino and Katy White. Their debut disc 2008 WE STARTED NOTHING captured an ‘80s sensibility and was definitely rooted in the spirit of Debbie Harry’s New Wave goodness. Many of the song lyrics were repetitive, but that was part of their anarchic charm especially with their hit single “That’s Not My Name.” Now, the duo have released their first single “Hands” alongside two remixes from their forthcoming (and untitled) 2011 album. “Hands” feels even more polished than the WE STARTED NOTHING songs, capturing the band progressing their sound as White digs a little deeper into their inner disco diva.

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TV Review: DEXTER – SEASON 5 – ‘In the Beginning’

Michael C. Hall and Jennifer Carpenter in DEXTER - Season 5- "In the Beginning" | © 2010 Showtime/Randy Tepper

Stars: Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, Lauren Velez, Desmond Harrington, C.S. Lee, David Zayas, Julia Stiles, Jonny Lee Miller, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Scott Grimes, Peter Weller, Angela Bettis Writer: Scott Reynolds Director: Keith Gordon Network: Showtime, Sunday nights Airdate: November 28, 2010 There is at least one jaw-dropper of a moment in “In the Beginning,” and it’s not the finale where Dexter (Michael C. Hall) and Lumen (Julia Stiles) finally get together and Dexter reaches the realization that he’s found someone who neither sees him as nor needs him to be a monster. It’s satisfying, but we’ve seen this coming […]Read On »

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Movie Review: THE KING’S SPEECH

THE KING'S SPEECH movie poster | ©2010 The Weinstein Company

A stressed-out man with a lifelong stammer goes to a speech therapist for help with public speaking. If this doesn’t sound like especially fertile ground for gripping drama, let’s add that the year at the start is 1934, the stammerer in question is the British Prince Albert (Colin Firth) and that his therapist is commoner Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush), an Australian immigrant and family man with a passion for acting that is, alas, more enthusiastic than artistic.

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TV Review: GLEE – Season Two – “Furt”

Carol Burnett and Sue Sylvester in GLEE - Season Two - "Furt" | © 2010 Fox/Mike Yarish

“Furt” proves to be another very strong episode as Curt’s dad (Mike O’Malley) and Finn’s mom decide to tie the not. It becomes a growth episode for Finn (Cory Monteith) who has to man up and now realizes he can’t be an innocent bystander when Curt is being terrorized by a school bully who threatens to kill him. It’s a thoroughly touching episode, with moments that have resonance and ring very true for a change.

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Movie Review: TANGLED

TANGLED movie poster |© 2010 Walt Disney Pictures

For those jonesing for an animated Disney fairytale in the traditional style, or just a fun film that can be shared with the kids, TANGLED fills the bill. Quick, to the point and entirely enjoyable, TANGLED takes the traditional Grimm story, gives it some action and the title princess some gumption and takes off in beautiful style, looking much like the old enchanted films of yore, with 3D that brings up a couple of moving moments and is otherwise unobtrusive.

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Movie Review: LOVE AND OTHER DRUGS

LOVE AND OTHER DRUGS movie poster | © 2010 20th Century Fox

There’s a telling movie to be made about the pharmaceutical drug trade in the U.S. (and elsewhere), but LOVE AND OTHER DRUGS isn’t it. This wouldn’t be a problem if LOVE wasn’t aspiring to be that movie, while simultaneously putting romance front and center.

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CD Review: JACKBOOTS ON WHITEHALL

© 2010 Movie Score Media | Jackboots on Whitehall Soundtrack

As composer Barry Gray showed with THE THUNDERBIRDS, puppets are far more believable when the composer is playing them for real, especially with music that doesn’t have any strings attached to imbuing the marionettes and their miniature settings with epic heroism. Now with his music for the WW2 spoof JACKBOOTS ON WHITEHALL, Guy Michelmore delivers what’s probably the coolest music to grace marionettes since the days of Team Tracy. As the band of puppet brothers go against the Nazi troops who’ve invaded England, JACKBOOTS summons an explosive spirit in line with TEAM AMERICA, But where Harry Gregson-Williams did a great […]Read On »

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CD Review: IN A BETTER WORLD soundtrack

In A Better World Soundtrack | © 2010 Movie Score Media

After his innovative, haunting work on LET THE RIGHT ONE IN and MURDER FARM, Swedish composer Johan Soderqvist teams for the eighth time with BROTHERS and AFTER THE WEDDING filmmaker Susanne Bier for a family story that segues from the Sudan to Denmark. The result is another deeply affecting, eerily off-kilter score from Soderqvist that uses some of the most strikingly beautiful percussion to grace a drama since Mychael Danna’s ICE STORM. Here, the spectral, bell-glass sounds of the African Array Mbira merges the feelings of a doctor treating victims of tribal violence in a Sudanese refugee camp with the […]Read On »

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CD Review: ON A DARK AND STORMY NIGHT soundtrack

© 2010 Buysoundtrax Records | On A Dark and Stormy Night Soundtrack

In the movie ON A DARK AND STORMY NIGHT, a bunch of Halloween revelers get a very nasty tricks played to their quickly decimating numbers in this aptly titled horror film, which features an appropriately creepy score by Albanian composer Aldo Shllaku. Though he might not have a 100-piece orchestra at his command, Shllaku has obvious fun with the musical tropes of a black-humored body count. What really socks him over as a composer to not turn your back on are ferocious bursts of a pipe organ and throttling rock guitar riffs. Combine these unexpected treats with any bunch of […]Read On »

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