After Dark Films
It seems a bit odd to take on a movie review of Courtney Solomon's Getaway, as only in the loosest terms is Getaway actually a movie. We begin without questions — other than a vague and frustrating "What the hell is going on?" — and end without answers, watching Ethan Hawke drive his car into things (and people) for the hour and a half in between. We learn very little along the way, probed to engage in the mystery of the journey. But we don't, because there's no reason to.
There's not a single reason to wonder about any of the things that happen to Hawke's former racecar driver/reformed criminal — forced to carry out a series of felonious commands by a mysterious stranger who is holding his wife hostage — because there doesn't seem to be a single ounce of thought poured into him beyond what he see. We learn, via exposition delivered by him to gun-toting computer whiz Selena Gomez, that he "did some bad things" before meeting the love of his life and deciding to put that all behind him. Then, we stop learning. We stop thinking. We start crashing into police cars and Christmas trees and power plants.
Why is Selena Gomez along for the ride? Well, the beginnings of her involvement are defensible: Hawke is carrying out his slew of vehicular crimes in a stolen car. It's her car. And she's on a rampage to get it back. But unaware of what she's getting herself into, Gomez confronts an idling Hawke with a gun, is yanked into the automobile, and forced to sit shotgun while the rest of the driver's "assignments" are carried out. But her willingness to stick by Hawke after hearing his story is ludicrous. Their immediate bickering falls closer to catty sexual tension than it does to genuine derision and fear (you know, the sort of feelings you'd have for someone who held you up or forced you into accessorizing a buffet of life-threatening crimes).
After Dark Films
The "gradual" reversal of their relationship is treated like something we should root for. But with so little meat packed into either character, the interwoven scenes of Hawke and Gomez warming up to each other and becoming a team in the quest to save the former's wife serve more than anything else as a breather from all the grotesque, impatient, deliberately unappealing scenes of city wreckage.
And as far as consolidating the mystery, the film isn't interested in that either, as evidenced by its final moments. Instead of pressing focus on the answers to whatever questions we may have, the movie's ultimate reveal is so weak, unsubstantial, and entirely disconnected to the story entirely, that it seems almost offensive to whatever semblance of a film might exist here to go out on this note. Offensive to the idea of film and story in general, as a matter of fact. But Getaway isn't concerned with these notions. Not with story, character, logic, or humanity. It just wants to show us a bunch of car crashes and explosions. So you'd think it might have at least made those look a little better.
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Like sands through the hourglass...the Daytime Emmy Awards are coming to TV live on Saturday night on HLN. So what can we expect of the show, which features some of the hardest-working (and most dramatic!) folks on TV?
Well, a celebration of what is seemingly a dying part of television's daytime history, for sure: soap operas! But what is it about soap operas that hook people in so fervently? Soap operas, while becoming a harder sell in they daytime, have heavily influenced some of today's top television series--where do you think Downton Abbey and Revenge got the idea to have such a juicy, drama-filled format? Celebrating the history (and point of evolution for some of our favorite shows) is definitely worthwhile, but it's not all that they're going to be giving awards to; the show will also highlight daytime talk, children's programming, and courtroom programming (which has their own separate genre/award; who knew?). Some of the culture's most ridiculous moments (aka anything with Kathie Lee and Hoda) happen in these wee hours, and we're excited to see how a party where they're all in the same room comes about.
Check out the nominees below, and tell us: what do you think about daytime programming? Sound off in the comments!
Outstanding Drama Series
“All My Children,” ABC
“Days of Our Lives,” NBC
“General Hospital,” ABC
“The Young and the Restless," CBS
Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series
Maurice Benard, Michael "Sonny" Corinthos, Jr. on “General Hospital”
Anthony Geary, Luke Spencer on “General Hospital”
John McCook, as Eric Forrester on “The Bold and the Beautiful”
Darnell Williams, as Jesse Hubbard on “All My Children”
Robert S. Woods, as Bo Buchanan on “One Life to Live”
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series
Crystal Chappell, as Dr. Carly Manning on “Days of our Lives”
Debbi Morgan, as Angie Hubbard on “All My Children”
Erika Slezak, as Viki Lord on “One Life to Live”
Heather Tom, as Katie Logan Spencer on “The Bold and the Beautiful”
Laura Wright, as Carly Corinthos Jacks on “General Hospital”
Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series
Bradford Anderson, as Damien Spinelli in “General Hospital”
Matthew Ashford, as Jack Deveraux on “Days of our Lives”
Sean Blakemore, as Shawn Butler on “General Hospital”
Jonathan Jackson, as Lucky Spencer on “General Hospital”
Jason Thompson, as Patrick Drake on “General Hospital”
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series
Melissa Claire Egan, as Annie Chandler on “All My Children”
Genie Francis, as Genevieve Atkinson on “The Young and the Restless”
Nancy Lee Grahn, as Alexis Davis on “General Hospital”
Elizabeth Hendrickson, as Chloe Mitchell on “The Young and the Restless”
Rebecca Herbst, as Elizabeth Webber on “General Hospital”
Outstanding Young Actor in a Drama Series
Eddie Alderson, as Matthew Buchanan on “One Life To Live”
Chad Duell, as Michael Corinthos on “General Hospital”
Chandler Massey, as Will Horton on “Days of Our Lives”
Nathan Parsons, as Ethan Lovett on “General Hospital”
Outstanding Younger Actress in a Drama Series
Molly Burnett, as Melanie Layton on “Days of our Lives”
Shelley Hennig, as Stephanie Johnson on “Days of our Lives”
Christel Khalil, as Lily Winters on “The Young and the Restless”
Jacqueline Macinnes Wood, as Steffy Forrester on “The Bold and the Beautiful”
Outstanding Culinary Program
“Bobby Flay's Barbecue Addiction,” Food Network
“Giada At Home, Food Network,” Food Network
“Guy's Big Bite,” Food Network
“Sandwich King,” Food Network
Outstanding Culinary/Lifestyle Host
Diada de Laurentis, “Giada at Home”
Rick Bayless, “Mexico—One Plate at a Time with Rick Bayless”
Nate Berkus, “The Nate Berkus Show”
Paula Deen, “Paula’s Best Dishes”
Sandra Lee, “Semi-Homemade Cooking with Sandra Lee”
Outstanding Talk Show/Entertainment
“The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” syndicated
“Live with Regis and Kelly,” syndicated
“The Talk,” CBS
“The View,” ABC
Outstanding Talk Show/Informative
“The Dr. Oz Show,” syndicated
”The Doctors,” syndicated
Outstanding Talk Show Host
Dr. Mehmet Oz
Regis Philbin & Kelly Ripa
The Doctors (entire cast)
Outstanding Morning Program
“Good Morning America,” ABC
“Today Show,” NBC
Outstanding Legal/Courtroom Program
“America's Court with Judge Ross,” syndicated
“Judge Joe Brown,” syndicated
“Last Shot with Judge Gunn,” syndicated
“We the People with Gloria Allred,” syndicated
Outstanding Game/Audience Participation Show
“Cash Cab,” Discovery Channel
“Let's Make A Deal,” CBS
“Wheel of Fortune,” syndicated
“Who Wants To Be a Millionaire,” syndicated
Outstanding Game Show Host
Ben Bailey, “Cash Cab”
Todd Newton, “Family Game Night”
Wayne Brady, “Let’s Make a Deal”
Meredith Vieira, “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire”
Outstanding Children’s Animated Program
“Curious George,” PBS
“Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness,” Nickelodeon
“Peep & The Big Wide World,” American Public Television
“Penguins of Madagascar,” Nickelodeon
“Sid the Science Kid,” PBS
“SpongeBob SquarePants,” Nickelodeon
Outstanding Performance in a Children’s Series
Dakota Goyo, as Josh on “R.L. Stine's The Haunting Hour The Series”
Leslie Carrara-Rudolph, as Abby Cadaby, on “Sesame Street”
Kevin Clash, as Elmo on “Sesame Street”
Caroll Spinney, as Big Bird on “Sesame Street”
The Daytime Emmy Awards are happening Saturday, June 23rd at 8PM EST on HLN, and rebroadcasting on Saturday, June 23rd at 10PM and 12 midnight, and Sunday June 24th at 8PM and 10PM.
[Image Credit: Getty Images]
General Hospital leads Daytime Emmy Award nominations
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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.