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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When Shonda Rhimes recently accepted a Diversity Award from the Directors Guild of America, she admitted that the honor made her "a little pissed off."
Rhimes, the creator of Grey's Anatomy and Scandal, and her producing partner Betsy Beers were honored for diversity casting by the DGA and was grateful for the honor but mad that it was something that needed to be appreciated. "Like, there's such a lack of people hiring women and minorities that when someone does it on a regular basis, they are given an award," Rhimes told the audience during her acceptance speech, as reported by Entertainment Weekly.
One of the most powerful people in television, when Rhimes speaks it gets attention, but there needs to be more people speaking out and more studios doing something about it. The Center for the Study of Women in Television & Film's Celluloid Ceiling report showed that women only made up 16 percent of the directors, writers, producers, editors and cinematographers on the top 250 grossing movies in 2013. Only 6 percent of those films featured a female director.
Television, where Rhimes has built her career, has its own issues, as highlighted by the controversy over Saturday Night Live's casting practices that finally led to the midseason hiring of cast member Sasheer Zamata and writers LaKendra Tookes and Leslie Jones, all three African-American females.
It should not take public outcry to get women and minorities hired for jobs either in front of or behind the camera. It should just take common sense. Schools across the country are graduating students with degrees in film and television production and not all of them are white males. Studio executives faced with harsh economic realities are loath to trust unproven talent with millions of dollars, but that excuse doesn’t explain why the number of women and minorities being hired for production positions like editors continues to remain low.
Even having success doesn’t guarantee continued opportunities. Amy Heckerling earned near universal acclaim for directing Clueless in 1995, and has been hired to helm one other studio production since.
Numerous businesses have proven that having a diverse mix of employees working on a project only enhances the final product, as varying points of view and new ideas are integrated in during the process. It's time that the entertainment industry took that model to heart and begins hiring casts and crews that is more representative of the general public. Improving diversity hiring may or may not create a better movie or television show, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt.
Machete has killed by land, by air, and by sea... and then wept for he had no more things left to murder. So the natural progression for a man with killing on his mind and nothing left to kill on earth... is to go kill whatever the hell is in space — where no one will hear Machete's blade chunk into your gullet. If you were one of the few (emphasis on few) that went out to see Robert Rodriguez’s second helping of Machete, Machete Kills, then you’ve already seen the fake trailer for Machete kills Again….in Space, a possible sequel that Robert Rodriguez and Danny Trejo will try to will into existence through film marketing or black magic.
The speculative trailer features the now overly-familiar Grindhouse fuzz that blankets everything else Rodriguez has done for the past half decade, as we see Trejo traipse around a space ship getting with the babes and introducing everyone else to the business end of his Lightsaber-esque machete, which is just as good for space gardening as it is for dismemberment. We're also treated to appearances from Michelle Rodriguez, Lady Gaga, a man in a silver mask who may or may not be Leonardo DiCaprio, and the friendly pop star droid companion, The Justin Beibot 5000 (now with less singing).
Machete Kills' low-box office gross has probably shot Rodriguez's dreams of a mexploitation space-opera in the kneecaps, but maybe that's a good thing. Before watching the trailer, we were initially excited at the prospect of a "Machete in Space" film, only to realize 30 seconds into it that we had already seen more than two lifetime's worth of a "Machete in Space" film — then we had to watch another whole minute and 15 seconds of it. It seems that Machete has indeed killed everything, even the guy who tapped Robert Rodriguez on the shoulder and told him that the joke is wearing thin.
Liam Hemsworth's one-time fling Eiza Gonzalez has landed her big break by scoring a role in the upcoming TV adaptation of Robert Rodriguez's cult film From Dusk Till Dawn. The director announced plans to turn the 1996 movie, about two criminals who stumble across a nightclub filled with vampires, into a 10-episode series earlier this month (Nov13), with Miami Vice star Don Johnson taking on the lead as Sheriff Earl McGraw.
G.I. Joe: Retaliation actor D.J. Cotrona and Zane Holtz were both cast in the lead roles made famous by George Clooney and Quentin Tarantino, and now Gonzalez has been added to the line-up as one of their hostages.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day star Robert Patrick and actors Madison Davenport and Brandon Soo Hoo have also been hired for the show, which is in production in Austin, Texas.
The programme is due to premiere on Rodriguez's own English-language El Rey Network next spring (14), shortly after the December (13) launch of the cable channel.
Actress/singer Gonzalez hit headlines in September (13) when she was photographed kissing Hemsworth a day after news of his broken engagement to Miley Cyrus was announced. She has only previously appeared in a handful of Spanish-language telenovelas.
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty
On Wednesday, Jake Gyllenhaal was sent to a Los Angeles emergency room after punching a mirror and severely cutting his hand. Don't worry, Gyllenhaal wasn't worked up in some sort of violent spree or drug-induced rage that provoked the incident. It was just Gyllenhaal being an awesome actor.
According to a source, Gyllenhaal was on the set of his new movie Nightcrawler when the incident occurred. "His character was looking into a mirror during the scene and punched the mirror in anger and broke it, cutting himself so bad he had to be taken to a hospital." The actor needed stitches but apparently is doing fine, even returning to the set the next day.
The source went on to explain that the punch only happened because Gyllenhaal was filming an intense scene and was in character, finishing up at the end of an 18 hour day. "The scene was emotionally charged and his character was talking into a mirror and he got so into it, he banged his hands against the mirror and it broke and cut him. It was all the scene and not because he was mad about anything else."
This isn't the first extreme for Gyllenhaal to brave for the good of this movie. In fact, the normally buff actor lost close to 20 pounds in order to act out his role as Lou, crime-scene reporter. A source even claims the actor is "starving himself" for the film. In October, Gyllenhaal addressed his extreme weight loss saying, "I knew that Lou was literally and figuratively hungry, so I was always a bit hungry." He went on to explain that there was no strict regime he went on to lose the weight. "I just love this movie. That's how I did it. There really was no technique."
It will be interesting to see if they write Gyllenhaal's injury into the script, or if the mirror punch and subsequent bandaged hand will be edited out. Nightcrawler is set to be released in 2014, while Gyllenhaal is suffering from a bad case of seven years of bad luck.
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For all its faults, no one can accuse Smash of having an awful cast. Despite what we thought of the show as it wrapped up its second and final season, we knew we were going to miss seeing Megan Hilty and Jack Davenport on our screens every week. They, along with Will Chase, have joined other projects: Sean Saves the World, Breathless, and Nashville. We might not miss Katharine McPhee’s flat performance as Karen Cartwright or the overdramatic plot developments: Surprise death! Surprise pregnancy! But we do miss these very talented people on our TVs every week.
As a Tony Award-winning star, his talents were underutilized on Smash. We’d like to see him in something with a little more staying power.
Leslie Odom Jr.
Who didn’t love Sam Strickland? Odom Jr. made us all fall in love with Sam (even though he was more interested in Tom,) so we’d really love to see him land a long-term role instead of a couple guest spots.
We cried when Kyle died. Not because those episodes were well written, but because Mientus was leaving. His time on Smash was cut short and we’re still angry about it.
We’re happy for Rodriguez because she’s starring on Broadway with Zacahary Levi in First Date, but we’re selfish and we’d like to see her back on TV.
Again, we’re happy Jordan landed a part in the movie adaptation of The Last Five Years — especially because he gets to play opposite Anna Kendrick — but we miss him and his voice (and, let’s be honest, his face.)
Actor Leonardo DiCaprio turned his star-studded birthday party into a charity fundraiser on Sunday (10Nov13) after recruiting rappers Kanye West and 2 Chainz to headline a special concert in his honour. The Titanic hunk hosted a private dinner at TAO Downtown in New York for 100 of his friends and family, including frequent collaborator Martin Scorsese and actors Tobey Maguire, Orlando Bloom and Benicio Del Toro.
The guests, among them designer Nicky Hilton, hip-hop star Busta Rhymes and New York Yankees baseball aces Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez, were then treated to a show by West, who performed hits such as Gold Digger and Good Life, while 2 Chainz serenaded the birthday boy with his own version of Happy Birthday.
The event, which also featured a charity auction, helped raise $3 million (£2 million) for environmental causes supported by the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation.
The Hollywood star actually turned 39 on Monday (11Nov13).
Robert Rodriguez's cult film From Dusk Till Dawn is to be adapted for a TV show. Quentin Tarantino wrote the screenplay for the 1996 movie and starred alongside George Clooney as criminals who stumble across a nightclub filled with vampires.
Miami Vice star Don Johnson is set to take the lead in the TV adaptation as Sheriff Earl McGraw, with G.I. Joe: Retaliation actor D.J. Cotrona and Zane Holtz taking the roles played by Clooney and Tarantino respectively.
Rodriguez will serve as executive producer for the 10-episode series and will direct its first two installments.
The director says, "If the movie's the short story, the series is the novel. We have assembled an amazing cast and crew, and viewers can expect to be part of a wild ride when the series premieres on El Rey Network."
The El Rey Network is an English-language cable channel started by Rodriguez and due to launch in December (13).
The programme is due to premiere in the U.S. next spring (14).
Actor Zachary Levi's first stint on Broadway is coming to an end, as the musical First Date is slated to close early next year (14). The Tangled star made his Broadway debut in the musical comedy in July (13), playing highly-strung bachelor Aaron, who is paired up with a serial dater named Casey, played by Smash beauty Krysta Rodriguez.
However the show, which follows the couple's romantic evening as it gets interrupted by fake emergency phone calls and manipulative exes, will end its run after 174 performances.
The lights will go out on First Date on 5 February (14).
Actress Rose Mcgowan has opened up her photo album to share quirky wedding and honeymoon snapshots with fans online. The former Charmed star, who has dated Marilyn Manson and her Planet Terror director Robert Rodriguez, exchanged vows with artist Davey Detail in Los Angeles on 12 October (13), and it appears the newlyweds are having a fun time celebrating the nuptials in the Maldives.
McGowan, 40, shared several honeymoon shots on her Instagram.com page on Thursday (24Oct13), including one of her and her man underwater, posing during what appears to be a diving expedition.
She captioned one of the holiday snapshots, in which she's holding onto her new husband's hand, "Walking on the bottom of the ocean. No biggie. I look like I'm dragging a small, hairy child."
McGowan also uploaded a series of candid shots from her wedding day, including a romantic shot of her and Detail kissing beneath a floral arch and a quirky snap of her seated, looking bored and frustrated before the ceremony.