Let’s all reminisce together for a moment. Think back to the glorious time you spent growing up devoted to one magical block of television: TGIF. The classics like Family Matters, Full House, and Step by Step started a revolution for the Friday night timeslot and paved the way for edgy and cool shows like Sabrina The Teenage Witch and Boy Meets World to thrive.
It was a simpler time, filled with Tamagotchis, Beanie Babies, and the allure of the perfect teen specimen known as Jonathan Taylor Thomas. Now fifteen-ish years later, we have the opportunity to relive the glory days of our tweendom and twirl with excitement knowing Friday nights are finally cool again — and we have Happy Endings to thank for that.
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TGIF — the oh-so cool acronym for “Thank Goodness It’s Friday” — was the place to be on Friday nights. If you were going to be busy that night, you’d better pray to Salem that your mom remembered to hit record on the VCR. Now in the technologically advanced world of 2013, we have the luxury of knowing that our DVR will capture the two back-to-back episodes of Happy Endings joy to watch at our leisure. But you shouldn’t do that — and here are six reasons why:
1. It’ll Make an Amahzing Pregame: Let’s be real, we’re all a little older, and hopefully a little wiser but anything that tugs on our '90s-loving nostalgia heartstrings takes precedence over anything else. Use the hour from 8-9 PM as a way to relive your glory days of childhood — while also getting wasted for your mid-twenties nights. “It’s early enough that I feel like at 8, 8:30 you’re not going out yet on a Friday night,” Happy Endings creator David Caspe suggests. “You’re probably going out around 10 or 10:30 so you can pregame with Happy Endings.” Our favorite rules? Take a shot every time Alex is confused or Brad and Jane have an overly sexual exchange. You’ll be drunk and ready for your night in no time!
2. It’s Free: Star Zachary Knighton knows that going out in [insert your city here] can be expensive, so why not stay in for a night and relax with some laughs? “Instead of wasting your money at a bar, or a club, you could stay home and watch Happy Endings for free. You’ll save money!” Knighton presents a perfect compromise for the loyal Happy Endings fans out there: “If you love our show and you want it to stick around, please watch on Friday night and go out Saturday night or even on Sunday night and then be really hungover at work on Monday.” We’re sure your boss will understand!
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3. You Won’t Get Rejected By That Hottie At the Bar: Staying in to watch Happy Endings on Friday night will be a huge ego boost! Not only will you avoid the embarrassment of getting shot down in front of your friends, you’ll know that the entire Happy Endings cast and crew is praising you for your fine taste in Friday night entertainment. In fact, Casey Wilson wants to send you countless compliments and thank yous. “If you’re watching in any capacity, God bless you,” she says. “We all love you and you’re a visionary and you get comedy and television and life.” Aww shucks, you’re welcome, girl!
4. It’ll Make You Smile: Plain and simple, Happy Endings is a phenomenal thirty minutes of television and the fact that every Friday fans will be rewarded with a double dose of laughter makes it even better. If you’ve been living under a rock, the lovely Elisha Cuthbert has the perfect explanation as to why all you newbies need to tune in. “To the people who haven’t seen it, I say just give it one episode and see what you think. I really think just one episode gets you involved and makes you understand what these amazing characters are all about," she says. "Something magical is going on here… When you get us all in a scene together it’s like taking six rubber balls and throwing them in a box and it’s chaotic and it’s fun to watch.”
5. They’ll Reenact An Episode of Full House For You: The cast of Happy Endings loves you and they want you to be happy with the new TGIF, so they are willing to take on some of the most iconic Friday night characters we’ve ever seen: The Tanner Family. Damon Wayans Jr. called dibs on his favorites, (“I’ll be the twins, I’ll be the Olsen twins!”) While Eliza Coupe is wiling to switch genders as the Elvis-loving Uncle Jesse. Coupe says, “Elisha should play Joey except she can’t figure out the whole 'Cut it out!’ thing.” Coupe and Wayans automatically demoted Knighton to the geeky and cleaning-obsessed Danny Tanner, but the verdict is still out on who Pally should portray. Shout out your suggestions in the comments below!
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6. Okay Fine, At Least Just Make Sure You DVR It: Always the realist, Adam Pally explains how fans can still help out even if they’re a cold-hearted, TGIF-hating person. “Let’s cut the s**t and know that you don’t have to watch it Friday night at eight because you won't be home if you like Happy Endings… So I will say to anyone who likes Happy Endings, DVR it.” Pally reveals that unlike other shows, Happy Endings can be enjoyed anytime, anywhere, and with anyone. “Happy Endings to me is like candy or a party you can stay there as long as you want but you don’t need someone to be like, 'And that’s the end of the party!' Happy Endings was built and made to play whenever you want to see it. That’s why it’s such a fun show because you can pop it in and enjoy the jokes and enjoy the characters at any time.” But seriously, try to watch it live!
Tune in tonight for a full hour of Happy Endings — aka one of the greatest shows to ever grace your television — tonight at 8 PM on ABC. And don’t forget to tweet your support using the hashtag #SaveHappyEndings!
Follow Leanne on Twitter @LeanneAguilera
[Photo Credit: ABC]
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If there's a cinematic alchemy award to be given this year director Bill Condon deserves to take it home after magically turning the tedious Twilight franchise into entertainment gold. 2011's Part 1 was a horror camp romp that turned the supernatural love triangle — the naval gazing trio of Bella Edward and Jacob — on its head. Breaking Dawn - Part 2 continues the madcap exploration of a world populated by vampires and werewolves mining even more comedy thrills and genuine character moments out of conceit than ever before. The film occasionally sidesteps back into Edward and Bella's meandering romance (an evident hurdle of author Stephenie Meyer's source material) but the duller moments are overshadowed by the movie's nimble pace and playful attitude. Breaking Dawn - Part 2 will elicit laughs aplenty — but thankfully they're all on purpose.
Part 2 picks up immediately following the events of the first film Bella (Kristen Stewart) having been turned into a vampire by Edward (Robert Pattinson) to save her life after the torturous delivery of her half-human half-vampire child Renesmee. She awakes to discover super senses heightened agility increased strength… and a thirst for blood. One dead cougar later Bella and the gang are able to focus on the real troubles ahead: Renesmee is rapidly growing (think Jack) and vampiric overlords The Volturi perceive her a threat to vampiric secrecy. Knowing the Volturi will travel to Forks WA to kill the young girl (a 10-year-old just a month after being born) The Cullens amass an army of bloodsucking friends to end the oppression once and for all.
Packed with an absurd amount of backstory and mythology-twisting plot points (some vampires can shoot lightning now?) Condon and series screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg mine revel in the beefed up ensemble of Breaking Dawn - Part 2 and thanks to a wildly funny cast it never feels like pointless deviation. Along with the usual suspects Lee Pace adds swagger to the series as a grungy alt-rock vampire Noel Fisher appears as a hilarious over-the-top battle-ready Russian coven member and Michael Sheen returns has Volturi head honcho Aro and steels the show. Flamboyant diabolical and a steady stream of maniacal laughter Sheen owns Condon's high camp vision for Twilight and he lights up the screen. There are a few throw away nations of vampires — the oddly stereotypical Egyptian and Amazonians sects are there mostly there to off-set the extreme whiteness — but the actors involved bring liveliness to a franchise known for being soulless. Even Stewart Pattinson and Taylor Lautner give personal bests in this installment — a scene between Bella and her dad Charlie (Billy Burke) is genuinely heartfelt while Jacob's overprotective hero schtick finally lands.
Whereas Breaking Dawn - Part 1 stuck mostly to the personal story relying on the intimate moments as Bella and Edward took the big plunge into marriage and sex Part 2 paints with broader strokes and Condon has a ball. Delving into the history of the vampires and the vampire world outside Forks is Pandora's Box for the director. One scene where we learn why kids scare the heck of the Volturi captures a scope of medieval epics — along with the bloodshed. Twilight might be known for its sexual moments but Breaking Dawn - Part 2 will go down for its abundance of decapitations. The big set piece in the finale is something to behold both in the craftsmanship of the spectacle and in its bizarre nature.
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2 had the audience hooting hollering and even gasping as it twisted and turned to the final moments. There's little doubt that even the biggest naysayer of the franchise would do the same. No irony here: the conclusion of Twilight is a blast.
So, Marky Mark, you wanna be a rock 'n' roll star?
Sporting a shaggy mane, a nipple ring and an extremely tight pair of leather pants, former rapper Mark Wahlberg cranks up the Marshall amps to 11 this weekend with Rock Star.
Expect a loud debut for this rag-to-riches-to-rags rock epic--destined to knock down surprise No. 1 champ Jeepers Creepers--that capitalizes on Wahlberg's success in Planet of the ApesThree Kings and The Perfect Storm. It's not much of a stretch for Wahlberg to convincingly portray a wide-eyed dreamer who succumbs to a lifestyle based on sex, drugs and heavy metal. That's pretty much what happened to him as Dirk Diggler, Boogie Nights's porn star and aspiring (but untalented) rocker.
A cautionary tale very much in the vein of VH1's Behind the Music series, Rock Star owes its roots, somewhat loosely, to the stranger-than-fiction rise to fame of Judas Priest singer Tim "Ripper" Owens. In 1996, Owens went from singing in a Judas Priest tribute band to replacing original singer Rob Halford. The members of Judas Priest have distanced themselves from Rock Star, no doubt because it depicts its would-be metal god as nothing more than a pawn unable to find his own voice.
Though hardly as poignant as last year's Almost Famous, Rock Star should outperform director Cameron Crowe's semi-autobiographical account of his teenage foray into rock journalism. Almost Famous made only $32.5 million, despite universal good reviews. Rock Star also should hit higher notes than the last major music-themed autobiography, Selena, which opened with $11.6 million in 1997 and eventually made $35.3 million.
In an ironic twist, director Stephen Herek's Rock Star opens against yet another adaptation of The Three Musketeers. Herek directed his own version of the Alexandre Dumas-penned swashbuckling adventure in 1993, starring Chris O'Donnell as D'Artagnan with Charlie Sheen, Kiefer Sutherland and Oliver Platt declaring all one and one for all. In director Peter Hyams's The Musketeer, former model Justin Chambers unsheathes his sword as D'Artagnan to face Wahlberg's Planet of the Apes adversary, Tim Roth.
The need for another Musketeer-- even one flaunting choreographed, stunt-heavy sword fights--remains a mystery. Also, Hyams didn't exactly light up the box office with his most recent efforts, End of Days and Sudden Death. Accordingly, The Musketeer is unlikely to challenge the $53.4 million that Herek's The Three Musketeers captured.
Aimed squarely at black audiences, Two Can Play That Game should enjoy the same attention enjoyed by similar previous romantic comedies starring Morris Chestnut and Vivica A Fox. Chestnut's The Brothers smooth-talked its way to $27.4 million earlier this year. Fox's Booty Call rang up $20 million in 1997. But Two Can Play That Game seems to lack the mainstream appeal that made Fox's 1998 Soul Food a $43.4 million hit and inspired a Showtime series.
Unlikely to show much in the way of endurance is Soul Survivors, given its competition. The teen horror yarn--on the shelf for one year, then delayed from the end of summer while cut to secure a PG-13 rating, then released in only 600-plus theaters--goes head to head against Jeepers Creepers and The Others. Soul Survivors could serve as nothing more than a footnote in the promising careers of stars Wes Bentley (American Beauty) and Eliza Dushku (Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back).
Not that Jeepers Creepers looks set to enjoy a second lucrative weekend. Executive produced by Francis Ford Coppola, of all people, this rote bloodbath set a Labor Day weekend-opening record of $15.8 million. That's almost twice that of the $8.1 million taken in 1996 by The Crow: City of Angels.
Those looking for a good scare most likely turned out last weekend for Jeepers Creepers--as is the norm for low-budget horror flicks--and will sample Soul Survivors or return to see Nicole Kidman's cerebral chiller,The Others this weekend. Still, expect the Creeper to rear his ugly head again, given that the film's $17.5 million gross through Wednesday justifies a sequel.
After dominating the August box office, Rush Hour 2, American Pie 2, The Princess Diaries and The Others should start to wind down their runs.
On Wednesday, Rush Hour 2 became the third film this year to make $200 million--$200.1 million, to be exact--and should surpass The Mummy Returns' $201.5 million this weekend. That would make Rush Hour 2 the year's second-highest grossing film, behind Shrek.
American Pie 2--cooling, but still a tasty proposition--has earned $126 million through Wednesday, $25 million than its predecessor. At $93.4 million, The Princess Diaries is the summer's biggest non-action sleeper and stands to make $100 million by next weekend. The Others continues its impressive run, having garnered $61 million through Wednesday.
With much to choose from this weekend, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back ($22.9 million), "O" ($7.7 million) and Summer Catch ($14.8 million) look set to take sharp tumbles.
The oft-delayed "O", in particular, failed to connect. Perhaps audiences who were perhaps longing for another accessible racially tinged romance, a la Save the Last Dance, shied away after discovering that this controversial drama is an almost faithful interpretation of Othello, just set in a prep school.
After surviving a devastating car accident following her first college party freshman Cassie (Melissa Sagemiller) falls into a coma and steps into a nightmare of otherworldly visitations. Haunted by a grim reaper of a far different kind her only hope is to cling to chance encounters with her lost love Sean (Casey Affleck) and the aid of a mysterious young priest named Father Jude (Luke Wilson). Cassie's malicious friends Matt (Wes Bentley) Annabel (Eliza Dushku) and the morose Raven (Angela Featherstone) seem intent on drawing her to the dark side but the spirit of her soul mate Sean guides her back to the world of the living.
Sagemiller (Get Over It) may be a fine actress but this film--her second full-length feature--isn't the one to prove it. Not that Sagemiller does a poor job but like most dull and stale horror movies the female lead isn't asked to do much other than look frightened and scream--a lot. Affleck (Good Will Hunting) Bentley (American Beauty) and Dushku (Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back) are among the more talented actors of their generation but are completely wasted especially Affleck in his one-dimensional role. Wilson as Father Jude is the only character with an interesting part but unfortunately the good Father's development is stunted and incomplete leaving Wilson little to work with.
Steve Carpenter's first turn as a director leaves much to be desired. Of course Carpenter wrote the formulaic script so why shouldn't he be the one to helm it? One major flaw (and there are plenty to choose from) is that nearly half the movie is shot tight on the characters giving the audience a very myopic view. Even if that was intentional it certainly did nothing to heighten the tension (what little of it there was) in the movie. The flick's tagline "The World of the Dead and the World of the Living... are About to Collide" conveys the message of an epic struggle between the forces of evil and the forces of good--a struggle that never materializes. And the film's final message that love conquers all is the boring hackneyed truism that breaks the cliché camel's back.