Despite Catherine’s claim that she was going to fight for Vincent’s heart at the end of last week’s Beauty and the Beast, she'll have a hard time getting her happily ever after thanks to Vincent’s ex-fiancé Alex, who is determined to pick things up where she and her former love left off 10 years ago when he shipped off to Afghanistan.
But Alex still doesn’t know Vincent’s secret side, a.k.a. the beast that comes out when he gets angry. Will she finally find out the truth in tonight's episode, “Cold Turkey?" And if she does, will she still be so eager to leave the country with him?
Hollywood.com couldn’t wait until tonight’s episode to get answers, so we went straight to the source herself: the lovely Bridget Regan, who plays Alex. Read up on all of the juicy scoop we could get out of her:
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Hollywood.com: So is Alex ever going to find out Vincent’s big secret, or is he determined to keep her in the dark?
Bridget Regan: “That’s the challenge and also a part of the appeal of why Vincent is enjoying being around her — she doesn’t know this whole ugly part of him that is the reality of who he is now. He gets to live in the past and live in the fantasy without anyone looking at him like he is a beast.”
Even though she knows part of the truth – that Vincent is presumed dead for government reasons – she still didn’t understand why he couldn’t give the police his name last week. Why did she not piece that together?
“Alex has no idea, which is hard to keep in mind. So something like breaking in to the ice rink and getting caught by the police is not a big deal to her. The reality has started to set in for Vincent, after having to face Catherine after bailing him out. She might need to find out. That’s Vincent’s predicament. Alex is just living in this la-la land. She thinks she can just run away with him and join this Doctors Without Borders thing. She’s oblivious.”
Is Alex going to find out that Catherine is more than just Vincent’s handler?
“Alex started to get this instinct of, ‘Something’s going on here. Something’s amiss. Maybe’s there’s something more between him and Catherine.’ But she didn’t want to believe that. Everyone’s been in a situation that is obviously one thing but your mind really wants to believe the story. She just loves him so much and they were together for so long but then he disappeared. She was told he was dead. She’s really in a lot of shock about the whole thing. She is just happy to have the man she loves back in her life because she hasn’t found anyone else like him.”
RELATED: 'Beauty and the Beast': Jay Ryan on Alex Vs. Cat and the Manhunt For Vincent
Why do you think JT is on Catherine’s side of the love triangle? He hasn’t been her biggest fan in the past.
“What’s interesting is that we grew up together. Me, JT, Vince, Vince’s brothers, we all lived on the same street, went to the same school. We were all friends. It’s interesting that JT wouldn’t side with Alex considering they have this history together. But JT also has a lot more knowledge of the reality of the situation than Alex does at this point. He really understands the best out of anyone what’s happening to Vincent’s body and mind and Alex has no idea, whereas Catherine does. And Catherine is on his side and defending him and comes to his rescue when he needs it. So I think I can understand why he would root for her instead of Alex.”
Tell me about tonight’s episode, “Cold Turkey.”
“Alex wants to take Vincent away for a weekend to her family’s cabin in the woods. It was this special place for Vince and Alex when they were a young couple and they would go there to get away from it all and be alone. Alex wants to pick up where they left off and go have a romantic weekend. So she goes and asks Catherine for permission if she can take him away because she still thinks Catherine is his handler. She’s trying to follow the rules and be respectful, so that’s why she goes and asks for permission. And a lot happens, but Alex just wants to reconnect with him in a really romantic way.”
Beauty and the Beast airs Thursdays at 9 PM ET/PT on The CW.
[Photo Credit: Ben Mark Holzberg/The CW]
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It’s scary to think that even in 2013, medicine is not an exact science. Not to shortchange the legitimate advances in medical technology and the tireless work of doctors, scientists, and other professionals, but there’s a problem that rests with the idiosyncratic nature of human pathology. This is why a seemingly innocuous cold medicine, that does no harm to 99.9% of the population, can end up killing some unfortunate outlying individual. In director Steven Soderbergh’s latest film Side Effects, he examines the relationship between the intended benefits of medicine and the dangerous unintentional results of its ingestion.
One thing that has dramatically changed health care over the last decade or so is the prevalence of online medical knowledge. Sites like WebMD have made it possible for the average person to, at least attempt to, diagnose themselves without consulting a physician. This is not the ideal scenario of course, as the credentials needed to surf the web and those necessary to practice medicine are wholly divergent, but it does put more academic information at the fingertips of the average Joe. One wonders how some iconic characters from cinema past would have been diagnosed and treated were WebMD available at the time....
Regan in The Exorcist
If you’ve seen The Exorcist, and at this point it’s hard to imagine how you couldn’t have, then you know that Regan was that sweet little girl who becomes possessed by the devil. The symptoms she exhibits include thrashing about in a rage, using foul language, and becoming physically abusive with her mother. So, of course, priests were called in to deal with her obvious supernatural malady. And yet, it has never been rare for children Regan’s age to suddenly become difficult to deal with, even monstrous. Hormones are partially at the heart of this, but the natural volatility of adolescence can be augmented by Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). If Mrs. MacNeil were a user of WebMD, she might have delayed the call to the old priest and the young priest; opting instead for putting Regan on Ritalin and/or adding more fiber to her diet.
Kane in Alien
Just when that ugly, face-hugging alien is removed from your face, and you have convinced yourself that the worst is over, out pops a nasty little fledgling Xenomorph that turns your chest into a fruit bowl. It’s sort of bizarre to re-imagine older movies set in the distant future as to how they would have benefited from the existence of the internet, but here again it’s hard not to postulate how Kane’s treatment would have differed if he could’ve cruised the information super highway as easily as the Nostromo combed deepest space. Perhaps the crew would’ve recognized the situation as a simple case of intestinal parasite. If they had, maybe that fateful meal prior to his dramatic exit from the movie would’ve consisted of more garlic and wormwood, two things shown to be highly effective in ridding the body of parasites.
Darth Vader in the Star Wars Trilogy
In Star Wars, the galaxy is presided over by the sinister Darth Vader. In addition to being the terrifying right-hand man of the villainous Emperor, Vader was one of cinema’s most prominent asthmatics. We would later find out that his condition was caused by a rather uninspired battle with his mentor on a computer-generated lava planet, but the end result was a considerably cumbersome respirator. Were Darth to consult WebMD, perhaps he might have attempted to use corticosteroids as a controller medication as opposed to the constant, rhythmic quick relief of his noisy apparatus. At the very least, he wouldn’t have sounded like a walking iron lung.
Snake Plissken in Escape from New York
The great characters in cinema, especially action cinema, are often enigmatic; we aren’t allowed into every corner of their psyche. Snake Plissken from John Carpenter’s Escape from New York certainly qualifies on that front. From other characters, we catch passive references to his past, but he is a man of few words shrouded in mystery. One of the most mysterious facets of Snake is his eye patch. How did he lose that eye? If we may theorize, perhaps Snake suffered a scratched cornea. Granted, this is a fairly common and highly treatable condition, but given his lone wolf machismo, even if Snake had had access to WebMD he probably would have tried to remove the obstruction from his eye himself; the ensuing corneal scar claiming his vision.
Peyton Flanders in The Hand That Rocks the Cradle
1992’s The Hand that Rocks the Cradle is a hodgepodge of every woman’s worst fears. A young family hires a seemingly wonderful woman to be their live-in nanny, and it turns out that she’s got miles and miles of nefarious ulterior motives. Though not as viable a source as the DSM, WebMD does have some criteria for diagnosing mental disorders. It would appear that Rebecca De Mornay’s Peyton Flanders suffers from a histrionic personality disorder. Those suffering from this disorder are egocentric, they are excessively emotional, their need for attention makes them inappropriately sexual, and they are expertly manipulative. If that doesn’t describe Peyton, nothing does. The utilization of WebMD here would be a dubious proposition, as it would have had to be Peyton herself who looked up treatment, but if she were to do so, she’d find that psychotherapy is preferred over medication.
[Photo Credit: Open Road Films]
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David Mitchell's novel Cloud Atlas consists of six stories set in various periods between 1850 and a time far into Earth's post-apocalyptic future. Each segment lives on its own the previous first person account picked up and read by a character in its successor creating connective tissue between each moment in time. The various stories remain intact for Tom Tykwer's (Run Lola Run) Lana Wachowski's and Andy Wachowski's (The Matrix) film adaptation which debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival. The massive change comes from the interweaving of the book's parts into one three-hour saga — a move that elevates the material and transforms Cloud Atlas in to a work of epic proportions.
Don't be turned off by the runtime — Cloud Atlas moves at lightning pace as it cuts back and forth between its various threads: an American notary sailing the Pacific; a budding musician tasked with transcribing the hummings of an accomplished 1930's composer; a '70s-era investigatory journalist who uncovers a nefarious plot tied to the local nuclear power plant; a book publisher in 2012 who goes on the run from gangsters only to be incarcerated in a nursing home; Sonmi~451 a clone in Neo Seoul who takes on the oppressive government that enslaves her; and a primitive human from the future who teams with one of the few remaining technologically-advanced Earthlings in order to survive. Dense but so was the unfamiliar world of The Matrix. Cloud Atlas has more moving parts than the Wachowskis' seminal sci-fi flick but with additional ambition to boot. Every second is a sight to behold.
The members of the directing trio are known for their visual prowess but Cloud Atlas is a movie about juxtaposition. The art of editing is normally a seamless one — unless someone is really into the craft the cutting of a film is rarely a post-viewing talking point — but Cloud Atlas turns the editor into one of the cast members an obvious player who ties the film together with brilliant cross-cutting and overlapping dialogue. Timothy Cavendish the elderly publisher could be musing on his need to escape and the film will wander to the events of Sonmi~451 or the tortured music apprentice Robert Frobisher also feeling the impulse to run. The details of each world seep into one another but the real joy comes from watching each carefully selected scene fall into place. You never feel lost in Cloud Atlas even when Tykwer and the Wachowskis have infused three action sequences — a gritty car chase in the '70s a kinetic chase through Neo Seoul and a foot race through the forests of future millennia — into one extended set piece. This is a unified film with distinct parts echoing the themes of human interconnectivity.
The biggest treat is watching Cloud Atlas' ensemble tackle the diverse array of characters sprinkled into the stories. No film in recent memory has afforded a cast this type of opportunity yet another form of juxtaposition that wows. Within a few seconds Tom Hanks will go from near-neanderthal to British gangster to wily 19th century doctor. Halle Berry Hugh Grant Jim Sturgess Jim Broadbent Ben Whishaw Hugo Weaving and Susan Sarandon play the same game taking on roles of different sexes races and the like. (Weaving as an evil nurse returning to his Priscilla Queen of the Desert cross-dressing roots is mind-blowing.) The cast's dedication to inhabiting their roles on every level helps us quickly understand the worlds. We know it's Halle Berry behind the fair skinned wife of the lunatic composer but she's never playing Halle Berry. Even when the actors are playing variations on themselves they're glowing with the film's overall epic feel. Jim Broadbent's wickedly funny modern segment a Tykwer creation that packs a particularly German sense of humor is on a smaller scale than the rest of the film but the actor never dials it down. Every story character and scene in Cloud Atlas commits to a style. That diversity keeps the swirling maelstrom of a movie in check.
Cloud Atlas poses big questions without losing track of its human element the characters at the heart of each story. A slower moment or two may have helped the Wachowskis' and Tykwer's film to hit a powerful emotional chord but the finished product still proves mainstream movies can ask questions while laying over explosive action scenes. This year there won't be a bigger movie in terms of scope in terms of ideas and in terms of heart than Cloud Atlas.
There is something particularly unnerving about demon possession. It's the idea of something you can't see or control creeping into your body and taking up residence eventually obliterating all you once were and turning you into nothing more than a sack of meat to be manipulated. Then there's also the shrouded ritual around exorcisms: the Latin chants the flesh-sizzling crucifixes and the burning Holy Water. As it turns out exorcism isn't just the domain of Catholics.
The myths and legends of the Jews aren't nearly as well known but their creepy dybbuk goes toe-to-toe with anything other world religions come up with. There are various interpretations of what a dybbuk is or where it comes from — is it a ghost a demon a soul of a sinner? — but in any case it's looking for a body to hang out in for a while. Especially according to the solemn Hasidic Jews in The Possession an innocent young person and even better a young girl.
The central idea in The Possession is that a fancy-looking wooden box bought at a garage sale was specifically created to house a dybbuk that was tormenting its previous owner. Unfortunately it caught the eye of young Emily (Natasha Calis) a sensitive artistic girl who persuades her freshly divorced dad Clyde (Jeffrey Dean Morgan of Watchmen and Grey's Anatomy) to buy it for her. Never mind the odd carvings on it — that would be Hebrew — or how it's created without seams so it would be difficult to open or why it's an object of fascination for a young girl; Clyde is trying really hard to please his disaffected daughters and do the typical freshly divorced parent dance of trying to please them no matter the cost.
Soon enough the creepy voices calling to Emily from the box convince her to open it up; inside are even creepier personal objects that are just harbingers of what's to come for her her older sister Hannah (Madison Davenport) her mom Stephanie (Kyra Sedgwick) and even Stephanie's annoying new boyfriend Brett (Grant Show). Clyde and Stephanie squabble over things like pizza for dinner and try to convince each other and themselves that Emily's increasingly odd behavior is that of a troubled adolescent. It's not of course and eventually Clyde enlists the help of the son of a Hasidic rabbi a young man named Tzadok played by the former Hasidic reggae musician Matisyahu to help them perform an exorcism on Emily.
The Possession is not going to join the ranks of The Exorcist in the horror pantheon but it does do a remarkable job of making its characters intelligent and even occasionally droll and it offers up plenty of chills despite a PG-13 rating. Perhaps it's because of that rating that The Possession is so effective; the filmmakers are forced to make the benign scary. Giant moths and flying Torahs take the place of little Reagan violently masturbating with a crucifix in The Exorcist. Gagging and binging on food is also an indicator of Emily's possession — an interesting twist given the anxieties of becoming a woman a girl Emily's age would face. There is something inside her controlling her and she knows it and she is fighting it. The most impressive part of Calis's performance is how she communicates Emily's torment with a few simple tears rolling down her face as the dybbuk's control grows. The camerawork adds to the anxiety; one particularly scary scene uses ordinary glass kitchenware to great effect.
The Possession is a short 92 minutes and it does dawdle in places. It seems as though some of the scenes were juggled around to make the PG-13 cut; the moth infestation scene would have made more sense later in the movie. Some of the problems are solved too quickly or simply and yet it also takes a while for Clyde's character to get with it. Stephanie is a fairly bland character; she makes jewelry and yells at Clyde for not being present in their marriage a lot and then there's a thing with a restraining order that's pretty silly. Emily is occasionally dressed up like your typical horror movie spooky girl with shadowed eyes an over-powdered face and dark clothes; it's much more disturbing when she just looks like an ordinary though ill young girl. The scenes in the heavily Hasidic neighborhood in Brooklyn look oddly fake and while it's hard to think of who else could have played Tzadok an observant Hasidic Jew who is also an outsider willing to take risks the others will not Matisyahu is not a very good actor. Still the filmmakers should be commended for authenticity insofar as Matisyahu has studied and lived as a Hasidic Jew.
It would be cool if Lionsgate and Ghost House Pictures were to release the R-rated version of the movie on DVD. What the filmmakers have done within the confines of a PG-13 rating is creepy enough to make me curious to see the more adult version. The Possession is no horror superstar and its name is all too forgettable in a summer full of long-gestating horror movies quickly pushed out the door. It's entertaining enough and could even find a broader audience on DVD. Jeffrey Dean Morgan can read the Old Testament to me any time.
The most memorable wedding in recent cinema came from Bridesmaids: a movie that managed to deliver both a heartwarming and emotionally wrought exploration of adult friendships and a barrage of comedy, ranging from the nuanced to the scatological. Ultimately, Bridesmaids, which has been touted as an important movement in the realm of female-centric comedy, pleased its audiences with wacky, but good-natured humor and characters. But here's another way that might have gone...
Bachelorette isn't out to prove how powerful and meaningful friendships can be. From the looks of the below trailer, there isn't a whole lot in the neighborhood of "heartwarming" existing between lifelong friends bride-to-be Becky (Rebel Wilson, herself a Bridesmaids alum) and the constituents of her wedding party: Regan (Kirsten Dunst), Katie (Isla Fisher), and Gena (Lizzy Caplan). The latter three are bitter, selfish, hedonistic and still latching onto their more exciting youths as they lament the fact that their old pal is getting married. In terms of outlandish comedy, Bachelorette looks to rival Bridesmaids. And in terms of character, it might measure up as well. It's just a very different, much darker and meaner type of character we're dealing with here.
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The first and most important thing you should know about Paramount Pictures’ Thor is that it’s not a laughably corny comic book adaptation. Though you might find it hokey to hear a bunch of muscled heroes talk like British royalty while walking around the American Southwest in LARP garb director Kenneth Branagh has condensed vast Marvel mythology to make an accessible straightforward fantasy epic. Like most films of its ilk I’ve got some issues with its internal logic aesthetic and dialogue but the flaws didn’t keep me from having fun with this extra dimensional adventure.
Taking notes from fellow Avenger Iron Man the story begins with an enthralling event that takes place in a remote desert but quickly jumps back in time to tell the prologue which introduces the audience to the shining kingdom of Asgard and its various champions. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) son of Odin is heir to the throne but is an arrogant overeager and ill-tempered rogue whose aggressive antics threaten a shaky truce between his people and the frost giants of Jotunheim one of the universe’s many realms. Odin (played with aristocratic boldness by Anthony Hopkins) enraged by his son’s blatant disregard of his orders to forgo an assault on their enemies after they attempt to reclaim a powerful artifact banishes the boy to a life among the mortals of Earth leaving Asgard defenseless against the treachery of Loki his mischievous “other son” who’s always felt inferior to Thor. Powerless and confused the disgraced Prince finds unlikely allies in a trio of scientists (Natalie Portman Stellan Skarsgard and Kat Dennings) who help him reclaim his former glory and defend our world from total destruction.
Individually the make-up visual effects CGI production design and art direction are all wondrous to behold but when fused together to create larger-than-life set pieces and action sequences the collaborative result is often unharmonious. I’m not knocking the 3D presentation; unlike 2010’s genre counterpart Clash of the Titans the filmmakers had plenty of time to perfect the third dimension and there are only a few moments that make the decision to convert look like it was a bad one. It’s the unavoidable overload of visual trickery that’s to blame for the frost giants’ icy weaponized constructs and other hybrids of the production looking noticeably artificial. Though there’s some imagery to nitpick the same can’t be said of Thor’s thunderous sound design which is amped with enough wattage to power The Avengers’ headquarters for a century.
Chock full of nods to the comics the screenplay is both a strength and weakness for the film. The story is well sequenced giving the audience enough time between action scenes to grasp the characters motivations and the plot but there are tangential narrative threads that disrupt the focus of the film. Chief amongst them is the frost giants’ fore mentioned relic which is given lots of attention in the first act but has little effect on the outcome. In addition I felt that S.H.I.E.L.D. was nearly irrelevant this time around; other than introducing Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye the secret security faction just gets in the way of the movie’s momentum.
While most of the comedy crashes and burns there are a few laughs to be found in the film. Most come from star Hemsworth’s charismatic portrayal of the God of Thunder. He plays up the stranger-in-a-strange-land aspect of the story with his cavalier but charming attitude and by breaking all rules of diner etiquette in a particularly funny scene with the scientists whose respective roles as love interest (Portman) friendly father figure (Skarsgaard) and POV character (Dennings) are ripped right out of a screenwriters handbook.
Though he handles the humorous moments without a problem Hemsworth struggles with some of the more dramatic scenes in the movie; the result of over-acting and too much time spent on the Australian soap opera Home and Away. Luckily he’s surrounded by a stellar supporting cast that fills the void. Most impressive is Tom Hiddleston who gives a truly humanistic performance as the jealous Loki. His arc steeped in Shakespearean tragedy (like Thor’s) drums up genuine sympathy that one rarely has for a comic book movie villain.
My grievances with the technical aspects of the production aside Branagh has succeeded in further exploring the Marvel Universe with a film that works both as a standalone superhero flick and as the next chapter in the story of The Avengers. Thor is very much a comic book film and doesn’t hide from the reputation that its predecessors have given the sub-genre or the tropes that define it. Balanced pretty evenly between “serious” and “silly ” its scope is large enough to please fans well versed in the source material but its tone is light enough to make it a mainstream hit.