It's the end of an era.
Newsweek announced on Thursday that after 80 years of publication they will cease their print edition and transition entirely to an all-digital format beginning in early 2013. According to the statement made on their digital partner The Daily Beast, editor-in-chief Tina Brown and Newsweek/Daily Beast CEO Baba Shetty confirmed the last print issue of Newsweek will be the Dec. 31 2012 issue. The new all-digital version of the magazine (available on tablet and online) will be called Newsweek Global and will be available through paid subscriptions. Still, it's not just a sea change for those at Newsweek like Brown and Shetty, who called this an "extremely difficult moment for all of us who love the romance of print and the unique weekly camaraderie of those hectic hours before the close on Friday night," not to mention those who will face the expected staff cutbacks. What about those who have been perusing Newsweek for its eight decades on newsstands? How will life change for all of us? Here are five ways: Nothing to read on the can: Reading material in the bathroom is a must for any household. In some cases, it's a life or death situation. Think I'm kidding? Imagine if Hank had an old copy of Newsweek lying around instead of Walt Whitman's classic Leaves of Grass when he took that fateful trip to the bathroom in the midseason finale of Breaking Bad? What happens to Walter White could have gone in a completely different direction if Hank was dumbstruck by a cover of Princess Diana instead of realizing his brother-in-law is the notorious meth lord he's been tracking. (See: photo above). Which brings us to.... How will we know what dead celebrities would be up to now?: Last June, Newsweek and Brown made headlines for their controversial cover story about what the late Lady Di would be up to if she were still alive to see her 50th birthday, including a Photoshopped cover of her conversing with the daughter-in-law she never met, Kate Middleton. Classless? Insensitive? Too far? Maybe. But Newsweek filled our nation's void of re-imagining the fate of deceased stars since Gene Kelly danced with a Dirt Devil. Still, even with the uproar, Brown may have been on to something. Case in point: People are still fascinated by the late Princess of Wales and, as the tremendous success of Hologram Tupac proved, there's a market for bringing celebrities back from the dead. Nothing to read in the waiting room of your doctor/dentist/veteranarian's office: Unlike the bathroom dilemma, the lack of Newsweeks in waiting rooms probably won't bring down any drug kingpins. Probably. That said, you could get stuck reading a torn issue of Reader's Digest from 1992 or a People magazine where the Puzzler is already filled in and that is a fate much, much worse. Less fodder for Jon Stewart and The Daily Show: The undeniable shift in the quality of content at Newsweek over the past few years not only caught the attention — and oftentimes wrath— of the media (thanks to covers like this and this) but also of the Emmy-winning Daily Show team and their adept ability to call out all the bulls**t out there. It's always good when Stewart and The Daily Show get their hands on a hot topic, so it will be sad to see them have to bid adieu to this wealth of comedy material. Watch their amazing lambasting of Newsweek and their controversial Michele Bachmann cover: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Get More: Daily Show Full Episodes,Political Humor & Satire Blog,The Daily Show on Facebook That Newsweek subscription you inexplicably received despite never signing up for it will cease to exist: What on Earth are you going to read for free now? Oh, right, the Internet. [Photo credits: AMC; Splash News] More: Watts the Di-fference Between These Pics? See Naomi Watts as Princess Di — PICSKate Middleton's Bikini Controversy: Photoshopped to Look Thinner?Jessica Simpson's Naked Cover Controversy—'Elle' Magazine Responds From Our Partners: Giuliana and Bill Rancic Planning for Baby No. 2: ‘I Would Love a Girl,’ Says E Host (Celebuzz) Kate Upton Flaunts Major Cleavage in Vogue’s November Issue — PHOTOS (Celebuzz)
A kids’ movie without the cheeky jokes for adults is like a big juicy BLT without the B… or the T. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted may have a title that sounds like it was made up in a cartoon sequel laboratory but when it comes to serving up laughs just think of the film as a BLT with enough extra bacon to satisfy even the wildest of animals — or even a parent with a gaggle of tots in tow. Yes even with that whole "Afro Circus" nonsense.
It’s not often that we find exhaustively franchised films like the Madagascar set that still work after almost seven years. Despite being spun off into TV shows and Christmas specials in addition to its big screen adventures the series has not only maintained its momentum it has maintained the part we were pleasantly surprised by the first time around: great jokes.
In this third installment of the series – the trilogy-maker if you will – directing duo Eric Darnell and Tom McGrath add Conrad Vernon (director Monsters Vs. Aliens) to the helm as our trusty gang swings back into action. Alex the lion (Ben Stiller) Marty the zebra (Chris Rock) Gloria the hippo (Jada Pinkett Smith) and Melman the giraffe (David Schwimmer) are stuck in Africa after the hullaballoo of Madagascar 2 and they’ll do anything to get back to their beloved New York. Just a hop skip and a jump away in Monte Carlo the penguins are doing their usual greedy schtick but the zoo animals catch up with them just in time to catch the eye of the sinister animal control stickler Captain Dubois (Frances McDormand). And just like that the practically super human captain is chasing them through Monte Carlo and the rest of Europe in hopes of planting Alex’s perfectly coifed lion head on her wall of prized animals.
Luckily for pint-sized viewers Dubois’ terrifying presence is balanced out by her sheer inhuman strength uncanny guiles and Stretch Armstrong flexibility (ah the wonder of cartoons) as well as Alex’s escape plan: the New Yorkers run away with the European circus. While Dubois’ terrifying Doberman-like presence looms over the entire film a sense of levity (which is a word the kiddies might learn from Stiller’s eloquent lion) comes from the plan for salvation in which the circus animals and the zoo animals band together to revamp the circus and catch the eye of a big-time American agent. Sure the pacing throughout the first act is practically nonexistent running like a stampede through the jungle but by the time we're palling around under the big top the film finds its footing.
The visual splendor of the film (and man is there a champion size serving of it) the magnificent danger and suspense is enhanced to great effect by the addition of 3D technology – and not once is there a gratuitous beverage or desperate Crocodile Dundee knife waved in our faces to prove its worth. The caveat is that the soundtrack employs a certain infectious Katy Perry ditty at the height of the 3D spectacular so parents get ready to hear that on repeat until the leaves turn yellow.
But visual delights and adventurous zoo animals aside Madagascar 3’s real strength is in its script. With the addition of Noah Baumbach (Greenberg The Squid and the Whale) to the screenwriting team the script is infused with a heightened level of almost sarcastic gravitas – a welcome addition to the characteristically adult-friendly reference-heavy humor of the other Madagascar films. To bring the script to life Paramount enlisted three more than able actors: Vitaly the Siberian tiger (Bryan Cranston) Gia the Leopard (Jessica Chastain) and Stefano the Italian Sealion (Martin Short). With all three actors draped in European accents it might take viewers a minute to realize that the cantankerous tiger is one and the same as the man who plays an Albuquerque drug lord on Breaking Bad but that makes it that much sweeter to hear him utter slant-curse words like “Bolshevik” with his usual gusto.
Between the laughs the terror of McDormand’s Captain Dubois and the breathtaking virtual European tour the Zoosters’ accidental vacation is one worth taking. Madagascar 3 is by no means an insta-classic but it’s a perfectly suited for your Summer-at-the-movies oasis.