John Mellencamp's two teenage sons have been charged with felony battery amid allegations they beat up another man in Bloomington, Indiana. The legendary rocker's boys, Speck and Hud, reportedly became embroiled in an altercation with a 19 year old outside his home on 29 July (13).
Police claim the pair, alongside pal Ty Smith, kicked and punched the male until the victim's roommates heard the attack and ran to help.
Cops were called to the scene, but according to the official incident report, no arrests were made at the time as no one present wanted to pursue criminal charges.
The Mellencamp boys reportedly told officers they had lashed out in relation to an incident that took place at a party earlier in the night, when 18-year-old Speck had been hit in the face.
Their alleged victim was hospitalised with fractures to his face and required stitches for cuts.
Charges against the Mellencamps were filed on Thursday (15Aug13) and Speck and 19-year-old Hud, a trained boxer, are now both facing a count of battery resulting in serious bodily injury. Smith, the son of Indiana University baseball coach Tracy Smith, has also been charged with felony battery for his part in the alleged fight.
News of the altercation comes just weeks after John Mellencamp appeared on late night TV in America sporting a black eye.
During the June (13) interview with David Letterman, he explained, "My son and I had words and he got a punch in and I didn't. (He's) 18. He's 6'2 and weighs almost 200 pounds..."
Speck and Hud are the singer's two children with his third ex-wife, former supermodel Elaine Irwin Mellencamp.
You love them, we love them, and it's high time Emmy recognized them. We're talking about the TV actors and actresses who have yet to be recognized by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, despite drawing us in week in and week out with their awe-inspiring ability to make us laugh, cry, or a weird combination of both. So every day here at Hollywood.com, we're going to be saluting those on the small screen who deserve an Emmy nomination, longshot status be damned. Today, we cast our ballot for Mad Men star Kiernan Shipka.
The very recently concluded fifth season of Mad Men — a longtime Emmy darling that is sure to rack up a nomination or 5 — was arguably its most polarizing to date. Many fans and critics lauded the so-called "season of the women", while others criticized its increasingly pessimistic tone, and creator Matthew Weiner's sudden obsession with newcomer Jessica Paré. The series' eleventh episode, which found fan-favorite Joan Holloway (Christina Hendricks) making a very out of character decision, was especially divisive — but everyone seems to band together when it comes to the scene-stealing presence of Sally Draper (Shipka).
It's not like Sally's outstanding contributions to the show are anything new. After her fantastic performance as a child coping with her parents' divorce in season 3, she was promoted to series regular — which is an impressive feat for a kid on a show that focuses on sex, infidelity, and the human condition in New York's swinging '60s. (It's even more impressive when you remember that Weiner was asked to eliminate two characters during season five's long negotiation process.) But this season, as she began her difficult and often messy journey into womanhood amongst some of the most selfish characters on television, she became something else entirely — our relatable window into the madcap world of Mad Men.
The adult characters presented on this show — Don Draper in particular — are often larger than life. And the majority of Mad Men's viewers will have a hard time truly identifying with the Dons, the Bettys, and the Rogers that populate Mad Men's bizarre universe — mostly because we were either not alive, or children during the 1960's. Mad Men's fans didn't day drink in a corner suite or face office discrimination during the '60s or '70s, because we were too busy watching cartoons and falling for our own version of a creepy Glen. (Hey, no one said young love was perfect.) We're not watching ourselves on this show, we're watching our parents and grandparents — with much of the same wide-eyed, rapidly decaying innocence of Sally Draper. These people are messed up, and having Sally around as our honorary representative is important.
When Don was honored by the American Cancer Society in episode 7, Shipka managed to perfectly blend the shock and disgust Sally was feeling with her utmost desire to appear grown up and poised. Her face when she opened the door and found her step-grandmother fellating her "date" for the evening really said it all. When she called Glen later that night to complain that Manhattan was "dirty," boy did we agree with her. Even more impressive was her work in episode 4, "Mystery Date", which found Sally stuck at home with her miserable maternal step-grandmother, dealing with the abject horror of the Richard Speck murders. Grandma Pauline, ever a product of her own generation, expected the pre-teen Sally to behave like a fully grown adult, even though she frequently treated her like a child. (Been there.) Sally's well thought out but petulant behavior was great to watch, as was her perfectly appropriate childlike response to news of the murders. Who wouldn't want to curl up and hide upon first learning that true monsters really do exist? (No, not Betty Francis — though Sally's plot with her mother and step-mother is an Emmy-winner in itself.)
All in all, Shipka manages to steal every scene she's in. Though we love our Peggy, our Ken, and our Joan, it's Sally's experiences that are the most universally relatable, and it takes a very talented actor to make those experiences so emotionally powerful for the adults who went through them decades ago. Shipka makes it seem easy, and though we love Sunday night television's other female teen powerhouse (Game of Thrones' Maisie Williams as Arya Stark), it's Shipka that deserves the Emmy nomination this year. Thanks for making our own adolescence seem a little less terrifying in comparison.
Follow Shaunna on Twitter @HWShaunna
[PHOTO CREDIT: AMC]
'Mad Men': The Season of the Women
'Mad Men': Why The Show Can't Go On Without Peggy
'Mad Men' Recap: Life and Death Situations
Instead of following a ragtag team of brutes hired for a suicide mission to destroy an Earth-bound meteor Seeking a Friend for the End of the World plays out the apocalyptic "what if?" scenario from the everyman vantage point. Written and directed by Lorene Scafaria (Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist) the film pairs average joe Dodge (Steve Carell) with wallflower Penny (Keira Knightley) for a journey across the east coast a hunt for Dodge's college sweetheart. Scafaria takes a character-first approach to her anti-blockbuster examining the end of the world with a pitch black sense of humor. But the road trip loses steam as it chugs along with the film's insistence to avoid Hollywood disaster tropes taking a toll on the entertainment value. Dodge and Penny are so normal they aren't that interesting to watch. In turn neither is Seeking a Friend.
Worse for Dodge than the whole "destruction of humanity" thing is the fact that he's facing it alone; his wife leaves him he has no real family and he hates nearly all of his friends. While everyone he knows is either hooking up or shooting up in hopes of going out on a high note Dodge buckles under the weight of an existential crisis that feels all too familiar. To his rescue is next-door neighbor Penny who insists the two hit the road together to go find Dodge's one-that-got-away. They don't have much of a choice as New York City is quickly overrun by Malatov cocktail-hurling riots.
When the catastrophe and societal chaos is seen through Dodge's eyes and Carell's complex interpretation of the straight man Scafaria hits all the marks. Watching Dodge tell his cleaning lady to go home because "What's the point?" is heartbreaking while his good friend's descent into frat boy madness for the same reasons nails mankind's vile tendencies. And through it all it's funny thanks to Carell's impeccable timing. When Dodge is eventually paired up with Penny the film meanders the two never unearthing what it is about each other that keeps them sticking together. The duo run into a kindly truck driver (who's hired an assassin to off him when he's unaware) a TGIFriday's-esque restaurant full of zany drugged up waiters and even one of Penny's ex-boyfriends whose locked down with automatic rifles and Ruffles chips in anticipation of the end. But Dodge and Penny's quest is mostly about the in-between moments the quitter grounded human reactions to the apocalypse. Even with great performers at the helm Seeking a Friend doesn't organically shape those moments so much as contrive them. In one scene Penny fondly recalls the wonders of listening to music on vinyl Dodge listening carefully and learning. It's a soft and low key discussion perfect juxtaposition against the big-scale problem at hand but when a twenty-something is explaining records to a guy nearing 50 it comes off as twee instead of truthful. The problem infiltrates most of Seeking a Friend's character moments.
Scafaria has an ear and eye for comedy but Seeking a Friend boldly reaches for something more. Sadly ambition doesn't translate to success a messy tonal mix that fail to make it all that engaging or emotional. Carell and Knightley serve the material as best they can but this is the end of the world an even that requires a little weight a little sensationalism and a little more than a casual road movie.
Dallas FBI Agent Thomas Mackelway (Aaron Eckhart) ignored extradition procedures that caused serial killer Raymond Starkey to walk--and landed the detective a fat demotion to a remote branch of the agency in Albuquerque. But before he even gets a chance to settle in his new digs Mackelway is called to investigate the nearby murder of traveling salesman Harold Speck whose body was found with one eyelid sliced off. On top of his face rests a sheet of paper with a red circle and a line drawn through it--the telltale mark of a serial killer. When the next victim turns out to be Starkey the serial killer who once eluded Mackelway the agent realizes this is not a textbook case. As he delves deeper into the investigation he discovers the victims in this murderous spree have something in common: They have all committed manslaughter themselves. With the help of his partner Fran Kulok (Carrie-Anne Moss) Mackelway connects Benjamin O'Ryan (Ben Kingsley) to the crimes a loner who seems to be taunting the agents to find him as well as marauding serial killers who have managed to evade authorities. O'Ryan it turns out was one of five subjects in a secret government project dubbed "remote viewing " which trained FBI agents to see distant locations using clairvoyance. What Mackelway has to figure out is whether O'Ryan is an antihero ridding the world of dangerous criminals or a cold-blooded killing machine.
Ever heard the saying "Keep it simple stupid"? The makers of Suspect Zero sure haven't. The film which boasts a surprisingly impressive roster including Kingsley Eckhart and Moss benefits from strong and touching performances from all its cast members but fails to successfully exploit them. Veteran thesp Kingsley demonstrates an impressive range here as O'Ryan a gray character who is both wickedly sinister and neurotically compassionate. Not many actors have the ability to make moviegoers empathize with a ruthless bloody killer but Kingsley does and he does it faithfully despite the lousy script that turns his potentially fascinating character into a cliché. Eckhart who plays the film's main character and protagonist Mackelway churns out a decent performance as the disgruntled agent but the role is too paint-by-numbers. Like most cinematic tough cops before him Mackelway breaks the rules to apprehend the bad guys and is so rugged that he chomps aspirin like Tic-Tacs. There is not a glimmer of originality in the character much like Moss's Kulok. Predictably Kulok and Mackelway have a tangled romantic past and although there is some chemistry between the two actors it isn't really needed in the story. Their liaison is just one of too many distracting sub-plots.
Director Elias Merhige who four years ago helmed the brilliant supernatural thriller Shadow of the Vampire carries his artistic vision to a contemporary setting here but in doing so loses some of the mystical elements that made his horror feature so unique. Merhige gives us dark and sinister sequences similar in style to Vampire but in a modern setting they come across as derivative of director David Fincher's 1995 crime thriller Seven. In fact it's almost impossible not to draw comparisons between the two. In Suspect Zero for example Mackelway enters a basement dwelling without working electricity so that the only thing discernible to the audience is spotlighted by the agent's flashlight--it's extremely similar to an early scene from Seven. On the surface the themes are also comparable: Both films involve an antagonist playing cat-and-mouse games with a particular authority figure. What is different is Suspect scribes Zak Penn and Billy Ray's very distinctive slant with the whole remote viewing phenomenon. But unfortunately the angle becomes a casualty of Merhige's overzealous desire to make this film a visual tour de force.