Much like the somber melodies that float throughout its 105-minute runtime, Inside Llewyn Davis will remain lodged in your head weeks after you and the film first meet. With Oscar Isaac's "Fare thee we-e-ell..." ringing daintily in your ears, you'll shuffle out from the grasp of the Coen Brothers' wonderland of gray, but you won't soon be able to relieve yourself of what is arguable the pair's best film yet. Llewyn's is a story so outstandingly simple — he's a man who's s**t out of luck, and not especially deserving of any. He wakes up, loses his friend's cat, plays some music, and wishes things were better. And yet his is the Coens' most invigorating and deftly human tale yet.
Llewyn Davis makes the bold, but practical, choice of never insisting that we love its hero. He's effectively a jackass, justifying all the waste he has incurred with the rudeness he showers on the majority of those in his acquaintance. But Llewyn Davis isn't the villain here, either. The villain is the industry, and all the uphill battles inherent to its machinations. The villain isn't Llewyn's substantially more successful contacts — an old pal Jim (Justin Timberlake) and new fellow couch-surfer Troy (Stark Sands), but the listening public that prefers their saccharine pop to his dreary drips of misery. The villain isn't Llewyn's resentful old flame Jean (Carey Mulligan), no matter how many volatile admonitions she might shoot his way, but the act of God surrounding their unwitting adherence to one another. And it's not even the cantankerous and foul Roland Turner (a delightfully hammy John Goodman), but the endless, frigid open road of which each man is a prisoner (if the film has one flaw, it's that this segment carries on just a bit too long, but that might very well be the point). The villain is the cold.
Call it all a raw deal. But the real dynamism isn't in the challenges that happen outside Llewyn Davis, but in the determined toxicity brewing inside as he meets each and every one.
But this isn't the Coen Brothers' Murphy's Law comedy A Serious Man — we don't watch a chaotic pileup of every imaginable trick that the devil can manage to pull. Llewyn is steady throughout, not burying Llewyn deeper but keeping him on the ground, with the fruit-bearing branches forever out of his reach. In its narrative, Llewyn Davis is as close to natural life as any of the filmmakers' works to date. Perfectly exhibited in a late scene involving a trip to Akron, Llewyn isn't a cinematic construct, but the sort of person we know, so painfully, that we are very likely to be... on our bad days.
Still, working in such a terrific harmony with the grounded feel of Llewyn himself, we have that Coen whimsy in their delivery of 1960s New York City — rather, a magic kingdom painted in the stellar form of a 1960s New York City. And not the New York City we're given by the likes of Martin Scorsese or Woody Allen. Closer, maybe, to Spike Lee or Sydney Lumet, but still a terrain unique to moviegoers. A New York that's always recovering from a hostile rain, and always promising another 'round the bend. One that flickers like a dying bulb, with its million odd beleaguered moths buzzing around it against the pull of logic. There is something so incredibly alive about the Coens' crying city; this hazy dream world's partnership with half-dead, anchored-to-earth portrait like Llewyn is the product of such sophisticated imagination at play.
And to cap this review of one of the best features 2013 has given us, it's only appropriate to return to the element in which its identity is really cemented: the music. Without the tunes bobbing through the story, we'd still likely find something terrific in Llewyn Davis. But the music, as beautiful as it is, is the reason for the story. As we watch Isaac's hopeless sad sack drag himself through Manhattan's winter, past the helping hands of friends and into the grimaces of strangers, as we struggle with our own handfuls of nihilistic skepticism that any of this yarn is worth the agony (or that our attention to its meandering nature is worth the price of a ticket), we are given the rare treat of an answer. Of course it's all for something. Of course it's all about something. It's about that beautiful, beautiful music.
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The episode begins with a flashback of Kyle (Evan Peters) telling his friends how much he hates tattoos. He goes on a touching monologue about what he wants from his life, including a shout out to Katrina. Then he awakes to find out he is made of all of his friend’s tattooed parts. Oh writers, how you wound!
Speaking of long monologues. Madison Montgomery (Emma Roberts) has become super emo since being resurrected. She can’t feel anything since her nerve endings are dead, so she whines and eats everything in the house. She also takes time to eat a miraculous concoction that conveniently cuts her time in the make-up chair makes her look less zombie-fied. Who doesn’t want to be brought back to life to eat an entire chicken?
Did someone mention eating an entire chicken? Precious Queenie (Gabourey Sidibe) and Madam Delphine LaLaurie (Kathy Bates) wake up for a midnight snack, because why stop pandering to stereotypes now, right writers? So they bond over a super-sized meal at a fast food joint. Delphine lays it down sharply and says the writers witches will never accept or value Queenie because she’s black.
Meanwhile, in the poorly scored sub-plot, Fiona Goode (Jessica Lange) is having a Sex and the City moment. The gratuitous saxophone riffs give a Pavlovian expectation to hear Sarah Jessica Parker doing the voice over.Mr. Big Axe has been stalking me since I was a child but why didn’t he ever tell me I was special? More importantly what’s a girl to do when she starts losing her hair. Hair care in this city can be such a witch. It makes me wonder...can a working witch in this city have it all?
It turns out the Axeman (Danny Huston)has been macking creeping looking in on Fiona since she was 8 years-old. Of course, it was only paternal until he saw her naked as a teenager. Despite the creep factor of a ghost haunting you since you were a child knowing he was waiting to jump your bones is just too icky.
Cordelia Foxx (Sarah Paulson) is having major psychic flashes but still can’t see her husband Hank (Josh Hamilton) wants to kill her. She finds out that Fiona murdered Madison and declares war on her mother. She enlists Zoe’s help since she may be the new supreme. She also encourages her to drink since alcohol makes people super adept at complex magic.
Madison decides she will spend her afterlife causing drama. Apparently, the only way for her to feel is to have sex with another dead person and then get caught. The fetish of getting caught is apparently so thrilling it supersedes life and death. Rejoice, fans of sex in bathrooms!
After magically learning magic (see what I did there?), Zoe reanimates and reattaches a tongue. Then she kills Spaulding (Denis O’Hare) after he confesses it was Fiona all along. She takes a shower and has a three-way with two corpses.
Queenie decides to get her hair done by Madam Bad Weave Marie Laveau (Angela Bassett). She gets tempted by Marie’s assertions that the two witches are family. So she betrays her fried green tomato friend and gives her over to the voodoos. Are they not witches? It would be great if the writers took a second to distinguish the difference and explain why there’s beef.
Plotholes and Witch, Please! Moments
If there is a treaty between the voodoo priestesses and the witches how does everyone know where Stella lives?
If this is a school…who teaches classes? When do these girls actually learn magic?
How did Zoe go from a witch stumbling through the spell to resurrect Kyle to doing elaborate solo spells? She has raw power but how did she learn what to put where?
How did the Axeman, being corporeal for only a couple hours, manage to kill someone, take over their apartment, then go to a bar and meet Fiona?
Why do all the African-American characters on the show have to be evil? Angela Bassett is holding a grudge for a few centuries. She has no redeeming characteristics. She awakens the dead to murder a bunch of children because Fiona insulted her? Queenie shows no loyalty to the people who want to be her friend? Even the slaves that we’ve seen murdered in flashbacks were engaged in adulterous relationships by choice. These are people with no rights but they want to get down with their captors?
Kyle has been resurrected for a few weeks and only after seeing flashcards he’s capable of talking?
Most importantly, Marie has been doing hair for what could be multiple lifetimes...why does she have such a dated hairstyle?
Country star Jason Aldean has blamed poor judgement for the 2012 kissing scandal which led to the end of his marriage. The Big Green Tractor hitmaker hit headlines in September, 2012 after he was photographed locking lips with former American Idol contestant Brittany Kerr at a bar in Los Angeles.
He publicly apologised to his wife Jessica Ussery in a statement published online, admitting he had "too much to drink" and "acted inappropriately", and the high school sweethearts battled to save their marriage for the sake of their kids.
However, Aldean filed for divorce to end the 12-year union in April (13), and now he has opened up about the controversy for the first time, revealing the former couple had been going through its own troubles when he was caught cheating.
In a U.S. TV interview with newswoman Robin Roberts, which aired as part of the special Countdown to the CMA (Country Music Association) Awards show on Tuesday (05Nov13), he said, "It's one of those things where, you know, you go out and you're just hanging out.
"I think the biggest thing is, you know, obviously there was things going on in my marriage at the time where it just wasn't really happy. And you go out and you kind of let your guard down a little bit and things happen, and unfortunately... it's tough."
Aldean claims the media scrutiny which followed only made it more difficult for him to fix his marriage: "When you have to deal with all that stuff in public, I mean, it's hard to - it's hard enough to deal with it in private."
He admits that he's glad the paparazzi took photos of himself leaving the bar with friends - as he had photographic proof that he didn't take the singer back to his hotel.
He says, "Probably the best thing that could have happened that night was... they also took the pictures of me getting in a cab with my buddies."
Country star Jason Aldean is set to open up about his recent divorce in a TV special that will air on TV in America on the same night as the CMA Awards next month (Nov13). The Big Green Tractor singer filed to end his 12-year marriage to Jessica Ussery in April (13), after the couple fought to put a cheating scandal behind them.
Aldean struggled to save his marriage after he was photographed kissing American Idol contestant Brittany Kerr at a Los Angeles club last year (12).
And now he's sitting down with newswoman Robin Roberts to discuss the love split as part of her Countdown to the CMA Awards special on 5 November (13).
Luke Bryan, Shania Twain, Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton will also appear on the show.
I don't think there has ever been a film title as plainly descriptive as Machete Kills. There's not nuance or irony or symbolism hidden between the letters. It's simple: Machete kills. That's all he does, and that's pretty much the only thing that the latest red band trailer for Machete Kills shows. Machete killing things. And it's glorious.
In this sequel to Robert Rodriguez's mexsploitation thriller, Danny Trejo reprises his role as Machete, an ex-Federale with an unparalleled skill for filling graves. President Charlie Sheen (Carlos Estévez) tasks Machete with killing Mel Gibson, so off Machete goes to heavily increase the murder rate in several U.S states and Mexico. The trailer is a visceral slideshow of the many ways to kill a man. The fact that there isn't just one scene where a man is flung into the spinning blades of a helicopter but two should tell you all you need to know about what kind of movie this is.
We also get a glimpse of the other players in Machete Kills including, Michelle Rodriguez, Lady Gaga, Cuba Gooding Jr., and the lovely Sofia Vergara who is determined to prove that there's still comedic value in screaming at everything really loudly.
We can't be exactly sure how the invetible Machete/Mel Gibson showdown will end, but if we had to guess, Machete Kills will end with both parties walking away amicably, having solved their differences peacefully.
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Actors Orlando Bloom, Matthew Mcconaughey and pop star Katy Perry will all unveil stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2014. The honour will also go to Sally Field, Liam Neeson, Jessica Lange, Kaley Cuoco, Claire Danes and Cheryl Hines from the world of movies and TV, while rockers Jeff Lynne and Rick Springfield will also land spots on Los Angeles' famous sidewalk.
Rapper Tupac Shakur and comedian Phil Hartman are two late icons who will be recognised posthumously, while Tom Sherak, former president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, will also be feted.
David Green, chairman of the Walk of Fame selection committee, says, "We have a great mix of celebrities and industry executives who have made Hollywood what it is today - one of the greatest entertainment destinations in the world.
"The new selections will bring great joy and fond memories for those millions who visit Hollywood each year!"
This week (20Jun13), it was Jennifer Lopez's time to shine - the singer/actress fought back tears as she unveiled the sidewalk's 2,500th star, with fans and former colleagues Pitbull and Jane Fonda in attendance at her special ceremony.
It looks like you'll have to wait another year to see Jessica Alba hit the big screen again as Nancy Callahan. According to Box Office Mojo, the release date for Sin City: A Dame to Kill For has been pushed back from October 3, 2013 to August 22, 2014. Gee, we've already been waiting eight years for this movie. What's one more?
Seeing as production for the film only began earlier this year, it makes sense that they had to delay the release. After all, Sin City was a highly stylized, special effects-filled monster of a blockbuster — and that was back in 2005. Sin City 2 promises to be even more visually stunning, with a stellar cast to match. In addition to Jessica Alba, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For also stars returning cast members Bruce Willis, Rosario Dawson, Jaime King, Powers Boothe, and Mickey Rourke, along with newcomers Eva Green (as the titular dame), Josh Brolin, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Jeremy Piven, Juno Temple, and many others.
So the Sin City sequel has been postponed for 10 months. We can only hope this means that the movie will be out of this world. The pressure is on, Robert Rodriguez. The pressure is on.
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Fans of Robert Rodriguez's crime thriller Sin City will have to wait more than a year to see sequel A Dame To Kill For as its release has been pushed back. The follow-up to the 2005 cult classic stars Eva Green, Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba and Rosario Dawson, and it was due to hit cinemas in October (13).
However, fans will now have to wait until August, 2014 to see the long-awaited movie, according to Boxofficemojo.com.
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For is now due to hit cinemas on 22 August, 2014.
Jessica Alba realised a dream in Singapore on Thursday (23May13) when she hit the stage with Aerosmith at the inaugural Social Star Awards. The actress co-hosted the show, which was billed as the Oscars of Social Media, and was thrilled when Steven Tyler invited her to join him onstage.
A keen social media fan, Alba posted fan photos of her dancing with Tyler online and tweeted, "This totally happened 2nite (sic)."
She later added an Instagram snapshot of her posing with Tyler and fellow performers Cee Lo Green and Eric Benet backstage.
Tyler and his Aerosmith bandmates are in Singapore ahead of their first ever concert in the country, which takes place on Saturday (25May13).
Green will perform at the Marina Bay Sands venue as part of the Social Star Awards' weekend festivities on Friday night (24May13) with Carly Rae Jepsen.
Justin Bieber, Katy Perry and One Direction are all up for awards at a new prizegiving which honours the biggest stars of social networking. The inaugural Social Star Awards will focus on the celebrities who are making waves on the web, connecting with millions of fans around the world through the likes of Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
Bieber, Perry, Psy and Rihanna, who all boast huge online profiles, will compete for the Most Popular Music Solo Artist prize, while Jackie Chan, Justin Timberlake, Selena Gomez and Will Smith are all up for the Most Popular Actor award.
Linkin Park, LMFAO, Maroon 5 and One Direction will battle it out for the Most Popular Music Group honour.
Jessica Alba will host the ceremony, which will take place at the Marina Bay Sands resort in Singapore on 23 May (13), and will be streamed live on YouTube.com.
She says, "I'm thrilled to be co-hosting the first-ever Social Star Awards and look forward to seeing everyone in Singapore to celebrate these social media superstars."
Aerosmith, Cee Lo Green, Psy, and Carly Rae Jepsen will all perform at the event.