Movie Review: BEGIN AGAIN

BEGIN AGAIN movie poster | ©2014 The Weinstein Company

Rating: R Stars: Mark Ruffalo, Keira Knightley, Hailee Steinfeld, Adam Levine, Catherine Keener, Cee Lo Green, Mos Def, James Corden Writer: John Carney Director: John Carney Distributor: The Weinstein Co. Release Date: June 27, 2014 BEGIN AGAIN follows its title and actually starts over several times, to good effect. At first, we’re in a small folk music club inNew York, where performer Steve (James Corden) insists that his friend Greta (Keira Knightley) take the stage. Greta is deeply reluctant, but eventually plays and sings a song she wrote about contemplating throwing herself in front of a subway train. Most of […]Read On »

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Column: The KIA RIO EX road trip to NBC’s THE VOICE

KIA RIO EX | photo courtesy Midnight Productions Inc.

One of the great pleasures of reviewing for ASSIGNMENT X, is the various opportunities the KIA motor company has extended to the magazine to review their various vehicles. From the Sorento to the Soul, we’ve experienced the power and imagination of this company throughout it’s various vehicle experiences. That’s what made the latest event so intriguing. The chance to go on a KIA road trip to the taping of NBC’s musical competition series THE VOICE which KIA is an official automotive partner of. It being a very hot and sunny Southern California afternoon, I took my niece Rachel with me […]Read On »

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TV Review: AMERICAN HORROR STORY: ASYLUM – Season 2 – “Nor’easter”

Lily Rabe as Sister Mary Eunice in AMERICAN HORROR STORY: ASYLUM - "Nor'easter" | ©2012 FX/Byron Cohen

Stars: Zachary Quinto, Joseph Fiennes, Sarah Paulson, Lily Rabe, Evan Peters, Lizzie Brochere, James Cromwell, Jessica Lange, Chloe Sevigny, Adam Levine, Jenna Dewan Tatum, Clea DuVall Writer: Jennifer Salt, series created by Ryan Murphy & Brad Falchuk Director: Michael Uppendahl Network: FX, Wednesdays @ 10 PM Original Airdate: October 31, 2012 The first season of AMERICAN HORROR STORY was OK. It had a lot interesting elements, mostly trying to figure out who was a ghost and who wasn’t, and there were plenty of creepy moments and enough gore to entertain a lot of fans of the genre. The series also […]Read On »

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TV Review: AMERICAN HORROR STORY: ASYLUM – Season 2 – “Welcome to Briarcliff” – Season Premiere

Jessica Lange in AMERICAN HORROR STORY - ASYLUM - Season 2 - "Welcome to Briarcliff" | ©2012 FX/Michael Yarish

Stars: Zachary Quinto, Joseph Fiennes, Sarah Paulson, Lily Rabe, Evan Peters, Lizzie Brochere, James Cromwell, Jessica Lange, Chloe Sevigny, Adam Levine, Jenna Dewan Tatum, Clea DuVall Writer: Tim Minear, series created by Ryan Murphy & Brad Falchuk Director: Bradley Buecker Network: FX, Wednesdays @ 10 PM Original Airdate: October 17, 2012 The second season of AMERICAN HORROR STORY, aka the first season of AMERICAN HORROR STORY: ASYLUM (since last year’s storyline has nothing to do with this year’s storyline, the Emmy committee deemed the first year a miniseries – don’t worry about it too much, or you’ll wind up as […]Read On »

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TV Review: THE VOICE – Season 3 premiere

Adam Levine, Cee Lo Green, Christina Aguilera, Blake Shelton and Carson Daly in THE VOICE - Season 3 premiere - "Blind Auditions" | ©2012 NBC/Mark Seliger

Stars: Blake Shelton, Christina Aguilera, Adam Levine, Cee Lo Green, Carson Daly Network: NBC, airs Mondays and Tuesdays Original Telecast: September 10, 2012 Has network TV finally reached the saturation point with all its musical competition series? First there was the juggernaut AMERICAN IDOL, then THE VOICE came in to steal some of its thunder and last year Fox spawned THE X FACTOR. With ratings declines for all these series, it’s clear there’s some fatigue. Now NBC is rolling out the second cycle of THE VOICE in the same year, which is not necessarily the best thing for any of […]Read On »

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TV Recap: THE VOICE – Season 2 – The Battles Begin”

Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton on THE VOICE - Season 2 - "Let The Battle Rounds Begin" | ©2012 NBC/Lewis Jacobs

Network: NBC, airs Monday nights Original Telecast: March 6, 2012 If you want to see why AMERICAN IDOL appears to be losing its mojo, you only have to tune into a few minutes of the battle rounds for THE VOICE in the appropriately titled “The Battles Begin.” Here, 48 contestants are paired up by each of the four coaches where they duke it out in a boxing ring-esque box on stage – dueling with their opponent to one-up the other person and also keep up with them during the harmonies of each particular song. The Battle Rounds look like they’ll […]Read On »

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THE VOICE Recap: The Season 1 winner is … (and it’s a sort of shocker)

Javier Colon, Dia Frampton and Carson Daly on THE VOICE - Season 1 - The Finals Results Show | ©2011 NBC/Lewis Jacobs

Network: NBC Original Telecast: June 29, 2011 A one hour results show for THE VOICE? Really? NBC didn’t feel the need to stretch it to two hours plus? What is wrong with these people! Well, all I can say is Thank you!  Thank you NBC for the most painless results show in the history of these reality singing competitions After whittling the contestants down to four finalists (one from each of the Coaches Cee Lo Green, Adam Levine, Blake Shelton and Christina Aguilera), it’s now time to crown a champion. First, every contestant got one more chance to sing – […]Read On »

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TV Review: THE VOICE – Season 1- “The Finals” (Recap & Photos too!)

Adam Levine, Javier Colon, Cee Lo Green, Vicci Martinez, Dia Frampton, Blake Shelton, Christina Aguilera, Beverly McClellan on THE VOICE - Season 1 - "The Finals" | ©2011 NBC/Lewis Jacobs

Network: NBC, airs Tuesday nights Original Telecast: June 28, 2011 Now here’s what an AMERICAN IDOL finale should look like – four worthy performers battling it out for the crown. Four quality singers. Four singers who would all make kick-ass albums. And four coaches who currently have pop cultural relevance and are powerhouses in their own right. Hail THE VOICE. The show kicked off with the four Coaches Cee Lo Green, Adam Levine, Christina Aguilera and Blake Shelton tackling another Queen song – “Under Pressure” and doing it justice. It was much better than their Queen butchering a couple of […]Read On »

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The Dork Side: 5 Reasons THE VOICE is better than AMERICAN IDOL

THE VOICE - Season 1 poster | ©2011 NBC

I used to love AMERICAN IDOL. I watched every season. Well, except for this last one. I quit AMERICAN IDOL cold turkey this year, and I never looked back. Honestly, I thought THE VOICE was going to be a lame IDOL ripoff. Instead it has turned out to be a pleasant surprise, addressing many of my problems with AMERICAN IDOL. Not only do I like THE VOICE, I think it is superior to AMERICAN IDOL. Here are the five reasons I think THE VOICE is better than AMERICAN IDOL. 1. THE VOICE isn’t sentimental. No one made it through the […]Read On »

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THE VOICE recap, photos and reveal of the Final Four for Season 1

Blake Shelton, Dia Frampton on THE VOICE - Season 1 - Semi-Finals Results Show | ©2011 NBC/Lewis Jacobs

AMERICAN IDOL has perfected the art of procrastination when it comes to dragging out their results shows. It’s something that’s incredibly annoying and finely tuned week in and week out. Now, NBC’s THE VOICE gets to showcase their first official Results Show during the same week an episode has aired and damn did they get it right. It was mystery meat when it came to how the scores from the coaches and the audience was going to be added together, but the final reveal was actually quite clever. Essentially, the coaches had 100 points to divvy up between both of […]Read On »

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