For the bulk of every Rocky and Bullwinkle episode, moose and squirrel would engage in high concept escapades that satirized geopolitics, contemporary cinema, and the very fabrics of the human condition. With all of that to work with, there's no excuse for why the pair and their Soviet nemeses haven't gotten a decent movie adaptation. But the ingenious Mr. Peabody and his faithful boy Sherman are another story, intercut between Rocky and Bullwinkle segments to teach kids brief history lessons and toss in a nearly lethal dose of puns. Their stories and relationship were much simpler, which means that bringing their shtick to the big screen would entail a lot more invention — always risky when you're dealing with precious material.
For the most part, Mr. Peabody & Sherman handles the regeneration of its heroes aptly, allowing for emotionally substance in their unique father-son relationship and all the difficulties inherent therein. The story is no subtle metaphor for the difficulties surrounding gay adoption, with society decreeing that a dog, no matter how hyper-intelligent, cannot be a suitable father. The central plot has Peabody hosting a party for a disapproving child services agent and the parents of a young girl with whom 7-year-old Sherman had a schoolyard spat, all in order to prove himself a suitable dad. Of course, the WABAC comes into play when the tots take it for a spin, forcing Peabody to rush to their rescue.
Getting down to personals, we also see the left brain-heavy Peabody struggle with being father Sherman deserves. The bulk of the emotional marks are hit as we learn just how much Peabody cares for Sherman, and just how hard it has been to accept that his only family is growing up and changing.
But more successful than the new is the film's handling of the old — the material that Peabody and Sherman purists will adore. They travel back in time via the WABAC Machine to Ancient Egypt, the Renaissance, and the Trojan War, and 18th Century France, explaining the cultural backdrop and historical significance of the settings and characters they happen upon, all with that irreverent (but no longer racist) flare that the old cartoons enjoyed. And oh... the puns.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman is a f**king treasure trove of some of the most amazingly bad puns in recent cinema. This effort alone will leave you in awe.
The film does unravel in its final act, bringing the science-fiction of time travel a little too close to the forefront and dropping the ball on a good deal of its emotional groundwork. What seemed to be substantial building blocks do not pay off in the way we might, as scholars of animated family cinema, have anticipated, leaving the movie with an unfinished feeling.
But all in all, it's a bright, compassionate, reasonably educational, and occasionally funny if not altogether worthy tribute to an old favorite. And since we don't have our own WABAC machine to return to a time of regularly scheduled Peabody and Sherman cartoons, this will do okay for now.
If nothing else, it's worth your time for the puns.
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Amidst all the TV cancelations, here's some good news to tide you over this weekend: ABC is officially bringing back many of its hit shows for the 2013-2014 season: Nashville, Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, Once Upon a Time, Revenge, Suburgatory, Modern Family, The Middle, The Neighbors, Last Man Standing, and Castle.
Rookie series Nashville will return for a second season, bringing with it more country songs and soapy drama with Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere. Grey's Anatomy will return for an impressive tenth season with its core cast in tact, as stars Ellen Pompeo, Patrick Dempsey, Sandra Oh, Chandra Wilson, James Pickens Jr., and Justin Chambers all signed two-year contracts last year, taking them through Season 10. Scandal, Revenge, Suburgatory, Last Man Standing, and Once Upon a Time will return for a third season each, Modern Family and The Middle will return for a fifth season each, The Neighbors will return for a second season, and Castle will return for a sixth.
Follow Sydney on Twitter: @SydneyBucksbaum
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While the cast of Nashville didn't give acoustic performances of any of their original hit country songs (boo!), they did gather onstage together for a PaleyFest panel Saturday afternoon to tease some major relationship changes in the next few episodes (yay!). When the country-music show returns with all new episodes March 27, we'll finally get to see the outcome of Scarlett (Clare Bowen) and Gunnar's (Sam Palladio) grief-induced hookup.
"It’s getting freaky right now," Palladio says. "What a crazy situation to be in. They’re in a phase right that’s bringing them to a new level. Gunnar’s in a really traumatic place [after the death of his brother] and Scarlett is being that emotional bedrock for him. Bed rock, hey!"
All puns aside, Bowen tried to rationalize what made Scarlett finally take their relationship to the next level at such an inopportune time. "Grief makes people do very odd things," Bowen says. "The person you’re supposed to be with may not turn up at the most convenient, appropriate time. So you’ll have to wait and see what the aftermath is like."
And while Gunnar and Scarlett's relationship is being taken to new levels, the relationship at the core of Nashville is as complicated as ever. Rayna (Connie Britton) and Deacon (Charles Esten) have a long history, and things haven't gotten any easier with the announcement of Rayna's upcoming divorce and their heated elevator kiss. But Britton and Esten aren't optimistic that they can get a happily ever after. "She’s the one for me, but does that always work out, is that always the best?" Esten says. "That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to work out but we’re always trying."
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Britton agrees that their journey won't be an easy one. "It’s a very grown up relationship," Britton says. "We can go in so many different directions and we have. We can just rip each other apart in so many ways. But there’s always this foundation between the two of them."
While Britton and Esten couldn't reveal details about their relationship, we did get some scoop on what's coming up for Juliette (Hayden Panettiere) in the wake of her marriage annulment. "One marriage under my belt, a few 'carcasses,'" Panettiere says. "She’s mostly trying to rekindle the relationship with her mother and she loves to take two steps forward and one step back. Her life is a roller coaster."
But Panettiere did tease that someone new may be coming into Juliette's life. "A new character is going to come in and try to help this relationship, but whether or not that comes to fruition is questionable," Panettiere says. "Some clothes might come off in the meantime." She also revealed that one episode in particular will feature a lot of naked Juliette!
Interestingly enough, creator Callie Khouri also teased that the moment where Avery (Jonathon Jackson) bumps into Juliette (and tries to turn it into a pick up line) in the pilot might be a good foreshadowing of things to come. Could we possibly be seing an Avery/Juliette romance?
We'll find out when Nashville returns on Wednesday, March 27 at 10 PM ET/PT on ABC.
Follow Sydney on Twitter: @SydneyBucksbaum
[Photo Credit: Katherine Bomboy-Thorton/ABC]
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Thursday morning was a whirlwind of Golden Globes news. First came the TV and movie nomination announcements, quickly followed by a roundup of TV and movies nomination snubs (natch). The nominated TV and movie stars have even started to react to the news of their success.
Now that the metaphorical dust has settled, we can start to analyze the nominations and predict who will walk away with both the golden statuette and bragging rights come Sunday, Jan. 13 when the Globes concludes its broadcast. Now, these theories are not based solely on our opinions. We have collected hard data, numbers, and figures to accurately predict who will be called up to the stage in front of all of Hollywood and the world to accept their award (and by hard data, numbers, and figures, we mean the overall score for each movie on Rotten Tomatoes). Science! Math! Let's get to it!
Best Motion Picture, Drama
Django Unchained 100%
Life of Pi 88%
Zero Dark Thirty 100%
This is the closest race of them all. The biggest takeaway is that not only did all of these dramas get high scores (all but Life of Pi scoring above a 90%), but two -- not one but two -- films scored a perfect 100%. We're having a hard time predicting what will walk away victorious between Django Unchained and Zero Dark Thirty, but the consensus from all the Hollywood.com staff members who have seen both dramas is that ZDT will take the prize.
Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Drama
Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln 91%
Richard Gere, Arbitrage 85%
John Hawkes, The Sessions 93%
Joaquin Phoenix, The Master 85%
Denzel Washington, Flight 77%
While The Sessions as a whole scored the highest, Daniel Day-Lewis' performance in the historical drama Lincoln will nab him the Golden Globe. Day-Lewis completely transformed into the iconic role of the 16th president of the United States, complete with the accurate accent and mannerisms with which real-life Abraham Lincoln spoke.
Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Drama
Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty 100%
Marion Cotillard, Rust and Bone 82%
Helen Mirren, Hitchcock 67%
Naomi Watts, The Impossible 81%
Rachel Weisz, The Deep Blue Sea 79%
Though Jessica Chastain's Zero Dark Thirty will win the Globe for best drama, based on reviews' discussions on the actress nominees, Marion Cotillard might be the winner for her work in Rust and Bone. The actress plays a woman whose life takes a sharp turn when a horrific accident leaves her a double amputee. Cotillard is also expected to earn an Oscar nod for the same role.
Best Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 77%
Les Misérables 74%
Moonrise Kingdom 94%
Salmon Fishing in the Yemen 67%
Silver Linings Playbook 90%
Although Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom scored the highest out of all these contenders, it is the underdog Salmon Fishing in the Yemen that we think will win the Globe. This charming, intelligent romantic comedy is such a rare gem, and was the biggest pleasant surprise of the nominations.
Best Actor in a Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical
Jack Black, Bernie 92%
Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook 90%
Hugh Jackman, Les Misérables 74%
Ewan McGregor, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen 67%
Bill Murray, Hyde Park 38%
Though Bradley Cooper is being (deservedly) applauded for his work in Silver Linings Playbook, Jack Black's greatest role of his career in Bernie will earn him the Globe. Black managed to make his alleged murderer adorable and loveable, which is no easy feat.
Best Actress in a Motion Picture, Comedy or Musical
Emily Blunt, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen 67%
Judi Dench, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 77%
Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook 90%
Maggie Smith, Quartet 92%
Meryl Streep, Hope Springs 73%
We're going with the scores on this one. Jennifer Lawrence will win thanks to her portrayal of a widow with issues to match Bradley Cooper's bipolar character.
Best Animated Feature Film
Hotel Transylvania 43%
Rise of the Guardians 73%
Wreck-It Ralph 87%
Based on the scores, the Globe will either go to Tim Burton's Frankenweenie or Wreck-It Ralph. Even though Frankenweenie beat Wreck-It Ralph by 2 percent, we think the nostalgia and star-studded cast behind the voices of the video-game based Wreck-It Ralph will push it to the front of the race.
Who do you think will win? Hit the comments with your thoughts, and tune in to the 70th annual Golden Globes on Sunday, Jan. 13 to see if our predictions came true!
Follow Sydney on Twitter @SydneyBucksbaum
[Photo Credit: Weinstein Company; Columbia Pictures]
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While recent animated blockbusters have aimed to viewers of all ages starting with fantastical concepts and breathtaking visuals but tackling complex emotional issues along the way Ice Age: Continental Drift is crafted especially for the wee ones — and it works. Venturing back to prehistoric times once again the fourth Ice Age film paints broad strokes on the theme of familial relationships throwing in plenty of physical comedy along the way. The movie isn't that far off from one of the many Land Before Time direct-to-video sequels: not particularly innovative or necessary but harmless thrilling fun for anyone with a sense of humor. Unless they have a particular distaste for wooly mammoths the kids will love it.
Ice Age: Continental Drift continues to snowball its cartoon roster bringing back the original film's trio (Ray Romano as Manny the Mammoth Denis Leary as Diego the Sabertooth Tiger and John Leguizamo as Sid the Sloth) new faces acquired over the course of the franchise (Queen Latifah as Manny's wife Ellie) and a handful of new characters to spice things up everyone from Nicki Minaj as Manny's daughter Steffie to Wanda Sykes as Sid's wily grandma. The whole gang is living a pleasant existence as a herd with Manny's biggest problem being playing overbearing dad to the rebellious daughter. Teen mammoths they always want to go out and play by the waterfall! Whippersnappers.
The main thrust of the film comes when Scratch the Rat (whose silent comedy routines in the vein of Tex Avery/WB cartoons continue to be the series highlight) accidentally cracks the singular continent Pangea into the world we know today. Manny Diego and Sid find themselves stranded on an iceberg once again forced on a road trip journey of survival. The rest of the herd embarks to meet them giving Steffie time to realize the true meaning of friendship with help from her mole pal Louis (Josh Gad).
The ham-handed lessons may drag for those who've passed Kindergarten but Ice Age: Continental Drift is a lot of fun when the main gang crosses paths with a group of villainous pirates. (Back then monkeys rabbits and seals were hitting the high seas together pillaging via boat-shaped icebergs. Obviously.) Quickly Ice Age becomes an old school pirate adventure complete with maritime navigation buried treasure and sword fights. Gut (Peter Dinklage) an evil ape with a deadly... fingernail leads the evil-doers who pose an entertaining threat for the familiar bunch. Jennifer Lopez pops by as Gut's second-in-command Shira the White Tiger and the film's two cats have a chase scene that should rouse even the most apathetic adults. Hearing Dinklage (of Game of Thrones fame) belt out a pirate shanty may be worth the price of admission alone.
With solid action (that doesn't need the 3D addition) cartoony animation and gags out the wazoo Ice Age: Continental Drift is entertainment to enjoy with the whole family. Revelatory? Not quite. Until we get a feature length silent film of Scratch's acorn pursuit we may never see a "classic" Ice Age film but Continental Drift keeps it together long enough to tell a simple story with delightful flare that should hold attention spans of any length. Massive amounts of sugar not even required.
[Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox]
Hopefully by now your DVRs have recovered from all the use they got during the whirlwind of May finales, so now all that's left to do is sit back, and wait for fall (because, let's face it, summer TV shows really just can't compare). And while the next few months are sure to be somewhat grueling, dedicated TV junkies can take comfort in knowing we don't have to completely go cold turkey.
The big networks (ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, and CW) have graciously released several trailers for upcoming pilots, giving viewers a taste of what's to come next fall. So just in case you missed a few during the Upfronts craze a few weeks back, Hollywood.com has provided a variety of must-see clips from the various networks to help determine which shows you plan on tuning in for when fall premiere season comes around. So without further ado...
The series is an upcoming American musical drama, starring Connie Britton and Hayden Panettiere, who play two country singers looking to pursue their dreams in the music business.
The show follows the story of the crew of a rogue nuclear submarine and features an all-star cast that includes Andre Braugher, Bruce Davison, The OC's Autumn Reeser and Felicity's Scott Speedman.
666 Park Avenue
This show looks to be a supernatural freakout that stars Lost alum Terry O'Quinn and Vanessa Williams as a devilish married couple.
Next: More ABC Fall Pilots.
The half-hour show will center on Reba McEntire's character, who moves from Nashville to Malibu, Calif. in an attempt to resurrect her music career, after discovering her rock-star husband was cheating on her.
In hopes of providing a better life for his wife and three kids, Marty (played by Lenny Venito) move out to a New Jersey gated community called Hidden Hills, where they realize that their neighbors are...well...a little different.
How to Life with Your Parents (for the Rest of Your Life)
In case you couldn't tell by the title alone, this new comedy stars Sarah Chalke as a single mom who moves back in with mom and dad...possibly forever.
This show will follow the story of Jack Shea (Kyle Bornheimer) who puts his own dreams on hold in order to take over his family's handyman business from his father.
The series stars Radha Mitchell as Marta Walraven, a housewife from Northern California, who must continue her deceased husband's work in organized crime in order to protect her family.
This show will revolve around White Vincent (Michael Nyqvist), the editor of a skeptics magazine, as he's pulled into one of the most compelling conspiracies in human history.
Love has never been so complicated...
Next: NBC Fall Pilots.
The New Normal
Ryan Murphy serves up a brand new comedy that centers around two gay dads and a baby mama. Oh yeah, this one's a must-see.
Matthew Perry will star as a cheeky sportscaster who tries to move on from loss and finds comfort from the members of his mandatory group-therapy sessions. Could we BE anymore excited?
Justin Kirk stars as Dr. George Coleman, an animal-loving veterinarian who despises the pet owners.
The series picks up 15 years after the world loses all different forms of electricity (TVs, phones, lights, planes, what have you) and shows you how humans have adjusted. But the big question still remains: why did this happen?
Guys With Kids
This show, created by Jimmy Fallon, stars Anthony Anderson, Jesse Bradford, Zach Cregger as three thirty-something-year-old men who must deal with being fathers despite having not grown-up yet themselves.
Next: CBS Fall Pilots.
This show is a period drama which takes place in the 1960s and is based on the true story of Ralph Lamb — a rodeo cowboy-turned-longtime Sheriff of Las Vegas. Giddy-up!
The series follows the story of two best friends, Charlie (David Krumholtz) and Louis (Michael Urie), whose friendship seems to reflect that of a weird married couple. Plus, it comes from the creators of Will & Grace.
Made In Jersey
Starring Janet Montgomery, this legal drama centers around a working-class woman who uses her street smarts to compete with her colleagues at a top New York law firm.
This show is a contemporary take on Sherlock Holmes (played by Jonny Lee Miller) and his partner Watson, who's now a lady and played by Lucy Liu.
Next: FOX Fall Pilots.
The Mob Doctor
Former My Boys star Jordana Spiro is heading back to Chicago for this mob drama as a young thoracic surgeon who’s forced to juggle her career and her life-long debt to the South Chicago mob.
Kevin Bacon stars as an ex-FBI agent, Ryan Hardy, who’s hot on the trail of a master serial killer (James Purefoy), who has created a cult of serial killers which must also be stopped.
The Mindy Kaling Project
This show stars Mindy Kaling as an unlucky-in-love doctor, dealing with the daily work-life balance. It's probably no Office, but it might just be the next best thing.
Ben & Kate
The story mostly focuses on the relationship between two siblings: Ben (Nat Faxon) and Kate (Dakota Johnson), who happen to be polar opposites (think freewheeling brother meets uptight sister).
The Goodwin Games
The comedy stars Becki Newton (of Ugly Betty fame) and Scott Foley (of Felicity) as a brother and sister whose father left his fortune to them under some (presumably) steep terms.
Next: CW Fall Pilots.
The Carrie Diaries
AnnaSophia Robb will star as New York's most popular fictional style-icon, Carrie Bradshaw, who struggles with everyday teenage life in Connecticut -- until she meets her "first love", Manhattan.
Stephen Amell stars as Oliver Queen, who is just your average, everyday billionaire playboy until he survives a violent shipwreck and re-emerges as The Green Arrow.
Beauty and the Beast
This will be a contemporary reboot of the 1980s series, starring Smallville's Kristin Kreuck as Detective Catherine Chandler, and Jay Ryan as Vincent — a presumed-dead doctor who gets a little beastly when he's mad.
Former Vampire Diaries star Matt Davis will play an investigative reporter Jeff Sefton, who goes from a no-nonsense blogger to a full-out investigator when his brother mysteriously goes missing.
Mamie Gummer (you've probably heard of her mother, Meryl Streep) will star as Emily Barnes, a fresh out of med school intern at Denver Memorial Hospital, who soon learns that hospital life is remarkably similar to high school — where she was a certified nerd.
2012 Fall TV Pilots
Networks! Which Shows Are Canceled, Renewed, and Endangered?
The CW Says Goodbye To Ringer and Secret Circle, Hello To Carrie And More
Fox's 2012 Series Pickups: Kevin Bacon, Mindy Kaling, and the Mob