Warner Bros via Everett Collection
Five minutes into If I Stay, I had already begun compiling a list of the audacious teen movie cliché lines spouted by stars Chloe Moretz and Jamie Blackley, and their supporting cast. Fifteen minutes in, I had already given up — it was too much for one man to bear. For this reason alone I left the movie impressed. Impressed at how much disingenuous angst from the cutting room floor of Dawson’s Creek they managed to fit into a 106-minute movie.
It takes quite a toll on you to look past these maudlin iambs, and those braving the journey will find few rewards beneath the surface of If I Stay. Moretz’s character Mia, an overachieving cellist on the precipice of a breakup with Adam (Blackley) and wrestling with the decision to move across the country to study at Juilliard, suffers a monstrous car accident and washes back over the past year of her life — discovering her passions, her self-esteem, and her love for the obnoxious indie rock boy a grade above — in the form of flashbacks. While a couple of Mia’s more lighthearted memories manage to muster up some genuine spirit, this breed is significantly outnumbered by the drama. The sort of stuff we’ve all seen before, with the piercing reminder courtesy of the ham-fisted dialogue that it’s the sort of stuff we’ve all seen before.
Warner Bros via Everett Collection
Despite the general capability of Moretz, who helps to turn what could be another spineless YA heroine into a character with relative biological agency, latching onto Mia will be a difficult task. Surrounding her, we have a nearly insufferable Adam — sure, being in a band is a tried and true way to impress a desired mate, but usually one or two other redeeming personality traits are required to actually make a relationship work. As Mia’s parents, Miereille Enos and Joshua Leonard alternate scenes of enjoyable goofiness and cloying idiocy, with Enos at least coming out favorable thanks largely to her mastering of motherly affection.
But the story surrounding these characters is so rumpled and misguided, itself unsure of what to prioritize and who to root for and what constitutes personal victory, that the heart of the movie feels as withered and phony as its veritable tapestry of teen drama quotables. Worse, in fact, when it reaches its audacious conclusion: one that, without spoiling anything, feels not only ineffective but earnestly harmful in its message and the stolen authority with which it proclaims it. In honesty, the way to walk away from If I Stay with anything gained is if you actually manage to complete its cliché roundup. And to anyone who does I offer my humblest admiration.
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If you haven't heard of the ALS "Ice Bucket Challenge" yet, you've probably been offline for the last week or so. Hello, here to fill you in! The challenge is meant to help raise awareness, and donations, for ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. To participate, you are supposed to videotape yourself while pouring a bucket of ice water on your head, then nominate your friends to take the challenge. Recently, more and more celebrities have been participating and nominating their celebrity friends. It's been raising a lot of awareness, as well as creating a lot of hot men in wet t-shirts.
Nominated: Sophia Smith, Pharrell Williams, John C. Reilly, and Will Ferrell
Nominated: Cub Swanson, Peter Tunney, and Olivia Culpo
Nominated: Nick Jonas, Alex Pettyfer, Nelly, Alanna Masterson, and Diplo
Nominated: Guy Pearce, Mia Wasikowska, and Marilyn Manson
Nominated: Robert Pattinson, Matthew McConaughey, and Eric The Actor
Nominated: Woody Harrelson, Josh Hutcherson, and Matt Niven
Eddie Redmayne & Jamie Dornan
Eddie Nominated: Sally Light and Jamie Dornan
Jamie Nominated: Andrew Garfield
Nominated: Jeremy Renner, Chris Evans, and Mark Ruffalo
Robert Downey Jr.
Nominated: Chris Hemsworth and Vincent D'Onofrio
Nominated: Louis Tomlinson, John Terry, and Novak Djokovic
Post by Chris Pratt.
Nominated: Gregory Smith, Nick Offerman, and Dave Bautista
Nominated: Benedict Cumberbatch and Luke Evans
Nominated: John Green, Nat Wolff, and Dylan O'Brien
Nominated: Joe Maganiello
Nomiated: Jimmy Fallon, Steve Higgns, and The Roots
Nominated: Mark Wahlberg, Channing Tatum, and Brad Slater
Check back to see if some of these other Hollywood hotties have taken the challenge! Tweet us which celebrity you want to see take part in #ALSIceBucketChallenge!
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Legendary folk singer Jean Redpath has died, aged 77. The Scottish-born star passed away on Thursday (21Aug14) at a hospice in Arizona following a battle with cancer.
Redpath lived with Bob Dylan after she moved to the U.S. in the 1960s and the pair worked together on a number of occasions.
She released more than 15 albums throughout her 50-year career, toured the U.S. and Australia during the 1970s and made regular appearances on radio variety show A Prairie Home Companion.
Redpath was also appointed artist-in-residence at the University of Stirling in Scotland in 1979 and gave lectures at Wesleyan University in Connecticut.
She was awarded a Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) medal in 1987 for her services to music.
Tom Cruise drew huge crowds of fans as he scaled the roof of the Vienna opera house in Austria on Thursday (21Aug14) to practice stunts for the fifth Mission: Impossible film. The Hollywood superstar is preparing to kick off filming of Mission: Impossible 5 in Europe, and he climbed to the roof of the famous Vienna State Opera building to rehearse a number of daredevil stunts.
Cruise has been pictured strapped into a harness, balancing on a ledge high above the crowds below and even giving a wave to fans. At one point his co-star, Swede Rebecca Ferguson, joined him on the precarious ledge, while Cruise was also seen practicing swinging a rope for one of the scenes.
Local reports suggest filming is due to begin in the city on Saturday (23Aug14), and residents have been warned about possible travel disruption due to a number of road closures around the set.
George Clooney's ex-girlfriend Elisabetta Canalis is engaged. The Italian model/actress is ready to tie the knot with orthopaedic surgeon Brian Perri, her representative confirmed to Usmagazine.com.
The 35 year old sparked speculation of an engagement earlier this week (beg18Aug14) when she was spotted wearing a large diamond ring on her left hand.
The couple is reportedly planning to wed on 14 September (14) in Sardinia, Italy. Her ex-boyfriend Clooney is also expected to marry in Italy during that month.
Canalis split from the actor in 2011 after an 18-month relationship.
Jennifer Hudson has spoken out to distance herself from her half-brother's legal troubles after he was arrested for allegedly stabbing a love rival in the face. The actress/singer's relative, Steven Simpson, 45, was taken into custody in Michigan on Tuesday (19Aug14) following an alleged altercation with a man involved in a relationship with his estranged wife.
Simpson faces charges of home invasion and attempted murder, while the victim, who was stabbed in the face, chest and arms, is expected to make a full recovery.
The incident comes six years after Hudson's mother, brother and nephew were shot dead in 2008 by William Balfour, the estranged husband of the star's sister Julia, but the Oscar winner is adamant she does not want to be associated with the fresh drama.
In a post on her Twitter.com page, she writes, "Media pls (please) stop reporting shhh (s**t) that has absolutely nothing to do with me! Very offended."
Officials at the Indian film authority have halted the release of a movie based on the assassination of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi due to fears of unrest. Kaum De Heere, or Diamonds of the Community, tells the story of Gandhi's political run and focuses on the two bodyguards who killed her in 1984 and the violent riots that followed.
The film was originally approved by members of the Indian film classification board but the decision was reviewed after a number of politicians expressed their concern about its release, which was scheduled for Friday (22Aug14).
The panel ruled the movie can not be screened because it glorifies the killers and could spark protests.
Board chief Leela Samson says, "We saw the film and decided it could not be released as it was due to fears that it would lead to disruption of public order... The film is double trouble. It glorifies Indira Gandhi's assassins who took the law into their own hands and it glorifies the hanging of the two men."
Director Ravinder Ravi defends his film, telling India's The Hindu newspaper, "All that I am doing is telling a human story about two families that is neither political nor aimed at creating trouble."
The chief executive of the board, Rakesh Kumar, was arrested on Tuesday (19Aug14) for accepting bribes to approve Bollywood movies. Kumar revealed that Kaum De Heere was one of the films in question but Ravi denies the allegation.
Gandhi's two bodyguards Satwant Singh and Beant Singh carried out the assassination. Beant was killed by police shortly after the murder and Stawant was hanged for the crime in 1989.
Ac/Dc drummer Phil Rudd is adamant the band will "never retire" despite Malcolm Young's serious health woes. Young is currently taking a hiatus from the band while he battles undisclosed medical issues, and his nephew Stevie has stepped in to replace him as the group prepares to launch a new album and a 40th anniversary tour.
News of Young's troubles prompted a slew of retirement rumours, but drummer Rudd is adamant the show will go on for as long as possible.
He says, "We were never going to retire. It'll never happen. Angus (guitarist Angus Young) will never retire and as long as Angus never retires I won't f**king retire either."
Rudd adds of the Back In Black hitmakers' tour plans, "There is an AC/DC tour planned for the 40th anniversary of the band, but I don't know all the details yet... Everything's great in the band, we're ready to fire up on all cylinders again."
British pop couple Rochelle and Marvin Humes took the Ice Bucket Challenge live on air during U.K. daytime show This Morning on Friday (22Aug14). The Saturdays singer and the former JLS star, who were guest presenting the programme, hugged each other as the icy water was poured over them. The challenge raises money and awareness for motor neurone disease, also known as ALS.
Folk musician Damien Jurado has axed all his scheduled shows due to deteriorating health. The singer/songwriter was due to play at Brisbane Festival in Australia and embark on his first tour Down Under in September (14) but all forthcoming shows have been axed due to ill health.
In a post on Facebook.com, Jurado writes, "Due to health matters, all scheduled shows have been cancelled. It was a tough call, but I must take my health seriously. During this time I hope to get into full recovery, so that I can get back to doing what I love most - sharing my songs with you in a live setting...
"Can't thank you all enough for your love and support, it means the world to me. I apologise if my previous post alarmed anyone. I am ok and will be back at it soon. I am so thankful to all of you who supported this upcoming tour and this last album, I look forward to making these shows up in the future. Blessings."
Lurado has not revealed the nature of his illness.