Paramount via Everett Collection
Here are this week's highlights from VH1, Celebuzz, Flavorwire, and Hollywood.com.
"I'm not here to make friends," says every reality TV star ever. See a huge supercut of this assertion from a bunch of different stars, as well as VH1 Celebrity's other amazing reality show supercuts.
From Scorsese to Spielberg, all directors have had flops. And some of them have been major disasters. See Flavorwire's list of potentially career-ruining films from famous directors.
Ladies! The traveling pants are back. Looks like, after so many years, there will be a third Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants movie. Find out the details at Celebuzz.
How feminist is Beyoncé, really? Could she just be faking it? And how does one do that? Hollywood.com examines the question.
Summit via Everett Collection
You can imagine that Renny Harlin, director and one quadrant of the writing team for The Legend of Hercules, began his pitch as such: We'll start with a war, because lots of these things start with wars. It feels like this was the principal maxim behind a good deal of the creative choices in this latest update of the Ancient Greek myth. There are always horse riding scenes. There are generally arena battles. There are CGI lions, when you can afford 'em. Oh, and you've got to have a romantic couple canoodling at the base of a waterfall. Weaving them all together cohesively would be a waste of time — just let the common threads take form in a remarkably shouldered Kellan Lutz and action sequences that transubstantiate abjectly to and fro slow-motion.
But pervading through Lutz's shirtless smirks and accent continuity that calls envy from Johnny Depp's Alice in Wonderland performance is the obtrusive lack of thought that went into this picture. A proverbial grab bag of "the basics" of the classic epic genre, The Legend of Hercules boasts familiarity over originality. So much so that the filmmakers didn't stop at Hercules mythology... they barely started with it, in fact. There's more Jesus Christ in the character than there is the Ancient Greek demigod, with no lack of Gladiator to keep things moreover relevant. But even more outrageous than the void of imagination in the construct of Hercules' world is its script — a piece so comically dim, thin, and idiotic that you will laugh. So we can't exactly say this is a totally joyless time at the movies.
Summit via Everett Collection
Surrounding Hercules, a character whose arc takes him from being a nice enough strong dude to a nice enough strong dude who kills people and finally owns up to his fate — "Okay, fine, yes, I guess I'm a god" — are a legion of characters whose makeup and motivations are instituted in their opening scenes and never change thereafter. His de facto stepdad, the teeth-baring King Amphitryon (Scott Adkins), despises the boy for being a living tribute to his supernatural cuckolding; his half-brother Iphicles (Liam Garrigan) is the archetypical scheming, neutered, jealous brother figure right down to the facial scar. The dialogue this family of mongoloids tosses around is stunningly brainless, ditto their character beats. Hercules can't understand how a mystical stranger knows his identity, even though he just moments ago exited a packed coliseum chanting his name. Iphicles defies villainy and menace when he threatens his betrothed Hebe (Gaia Weiss), long in love with Hercules, with the terrible fate of "accepting [him] and loving [their] children equally!" And the dad... jeez, that guy must really be proud of his teeth.
With no artistic feat successfully accomplished (or even braved, really) by this movie, we can at the very least call it inoffensive. There is nothing in The Legend of Hercules with which to take issue beyond its dismal intellect, and in a genre especially prone to regressive activity, this is a noteworthy triumph. But you might not have enough energy by the end to award The Legend of Hercules with this superlative. Either because you'll have laughed yourself into a coma at the film's idiocy, or because you'll have lost all strength trying to fend it off.
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Lindsay Lohan's formerly tragic — but now just annoying — fall from grace is a story that just won't die. Long gone are the days when her courtroom drama was actually shocking, and our interest in her strange at-home antics has been largely replaced by the amusing wackiness of fellow fallen child star Amanda Bynes. The New York Times piece on the mess that is Lohan's "comeback" film The Canyons briefly re-sparked some interest in the trainwreck that keeps burning, but in a not all press is good press sort of way. In short, we're pretty much over Lindsay Lohan.
RELATED: All the Insane Things Lindsay Lohan Did on the Set of 'The Canyons'
However, there is one piece of the Lohan puzzle that is actually quite puzzling — her growing friendship with 47-year-old fellow tabloid-star Charlie Sheen, who will now be her romantic interest on an upcoming episode of his sitcom Anger Management. Sheen has been luckier than Lohan in that, either due to some stroke of brilliant luck or the fact that men have a wider margin for error in Hollywood, he seems to have recovered from his highly-publicized meltdown. Anger Management received an impressive 90-episode order, and when he's not interacting with Lohan, his formerly explosive exploits are now absent from the tabloids. So why is he jumping right back in by palling around with this deeply troubled young woman? Is he crazy? (Yes.)
RELATED: What are Lindsay Lohan and Charlie Sheen Saying in this Pic?
Maybe it's his post-meltdown success that has inspired the actor to basically take 26-year-old Lohan under his wing. The two shot a brief cameo together in the upcoming Scary Movie 5 (hey, speaking of things that won't die), then made headlines when Sheen reportedly offered up a hefty sum to help pay Lohan's taxes. Now, mere days after reports surfaced that Lohan ruined an expensive gown that Sheen set her up with, FX has confirmed that Lohan will play herself on an upcoming episode of Sheen's sitcom. Wait — what? Is this now the standard payment for screwing someone over?
To make things even ickier, this will mark the second time that the two have been romantically entwined onscreen this year. They wind up in bed together (as themselves) in SM5, and now Lohan will have a relationship with Sheen's character (who is based on the actor himself) after she becomes his therapy patient.
RELATED: Lindsay Lohan Ruins Dress With Impromptu Tailoring
Tell us this, universe: why are you (or, err, publicists) trying to make Lohan and Sheen, the couple, a thing? We sort of understand why one formerly struggling actor would want to help another, but the 21-year age difference makes the whole romantic piece of the equation very disturbing (especially given Sheen's extensive history with both domestic abuse and young girls, some of them porn stars). Also, why would Sheen keep banking on Lohan (she must be getting a decent sum for appearing on the show) after she's burned him twice in the last year, and proven herself to be an awful coworker on so, so many occasions?
If Sheen wants to help out Lohan financially — privately — fine. Weird, but fine. It's their own business, and maybe he can somehow help her learn from his own mistakes before she ends up six feet under (sorry, it's true). But putting these two together as some publicity-driven modern day f***ed up odd couple is a strange and terrible idea, that doesn't seem to be very beneficial for either star. If you want to clean up your image, don't keep bad company and become involved in a strange friendship/pseudo-relationship with a fellow addict who is 21 years older than you. If you're trying to become fodder for a future Lifetime movie, you're "winning" (sorry). If you're still trying to stage an actual, respectable comeback, this just isn't the way.
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[PHOTO CREDIT: Michael Stewart/Getty Images; Ivan Nikolov/Wenn]
From Our Partners:25 Most Scandalous Celeb Twitpics (Vh1)33 Child Stars: Where Are They Now? (Celebuzz)
John Demjanjuk, the man dubbed 'Ivan The Terrible' for his sickening role in the Holocaust, has died in a nursing home, aged 91. Demjanjuk was convicted of assisting in the murder of almost 30,000 Jews at a Nazi death camp in Poland during World War II, where he was a guard. He maintained he was not the man known as Ivan The Terrible right up until his death. He was originally convicted in 1988 but released by members of the Israeli Supreme Court five years later because there wasn't sufficient evidence to prove he was the mass killer. He returned to the United States and was extradited to Germany in 2009 to face war crimes charges.
WHAT IT’S ABOUT?
This follow-up to the 2006 smash hit Night at the Museum picks up shortly after the events of the first film with one-time museum security guard Larry Daley now living the life of a famous inventor. One night he decides to pay a visit to his old haunt the Museum of Natural History where he discovers that some of his favorite exhibits (and old not-so-inanimate friends) have been labeled as “out of date” and are being shipped off to storage at the Smithsonian Institute archives. In no time he gets a distress call from miniature cowboy Jedediah who informs Larry that a group of history’s most notorious evil personalities including Ivan the Terrible Napoleon Bonaparte and Al Capone are hatching a conspiracy. Together with their ringleader the 3000-year-old Egyptian pharaoh Kahmunrah they plan to take over the Smithsonian and after that the world. Larry springs quickly into action teaming up with Amelia Earhart and tries to save his old friends — and perhaps the planet — from the insidious invaders who’ve awakened from their slumber.
WHO’S IN IT?
Ben Stiller returns as Larry playing straight man once again to a legion of historical figures including new and returning characters. Back from the original are Robin Williams as a spirited Teddy Roosevelt Owen Wilson as Jedediah Smith Steve Coogan as the Roman emperor Octavius Patrick Gallagher as Attila the Hun and Mizuo Peck as Sacajawea. Ricky Gervais again appears briefly at the start and finish as museum curator Dr. McPhee. Welcome additions include a lively Amy Adams as the famed female flyer Earhart and a very funny Bill Hader (TV's Saturday Night Live) as an insecure General Custer. Christopher Guest plays Ivan the Terrible while Alain Chabat has lots of fun as Napoleon. Jon Bernthal’s Al Capone meanwhile is cleverly shot and isolated in vivid black and white. Best of all by a mile — and the real reason to see Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian — is Hank Azaria who plays Kahmunrah with brilliant comic timing and an affected speech pattern that’s highly amusing. The multi-talented Azaria (The Simpsons) provides the voices for two new computer-enhanced characters: a towering Abraham Lincoln and Rodin’s sculpture of The Thinker. Jonah Hill also shows up in an early scene as a Smithsonian security guard who confronts Stiller — a subplot that goes nowhere.
Although this follow-up suffers from a severe case of “sequelitis ” director Shawn Levy knows what makes this formula work for kids. Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian deserves props as the rare studio blockbuster intent on actually providing a little education by making these important historical personalities come to such vivid life. Use of photos and paintings from the adjacent museums is the most inventive new wrinkle serving as a clever interactive device for Stiller to use throughout the flick.
The screenplay (again by Robert Ben Garant and Thomas Lennon) rehashes a lot of what was fresh in the first film and the result feels roboticly recycled. Levy’s direction seems rushed at times as if the filmmakers are afraid anyone with an attention span beyond 30 seconds. Kids will eat this up but aside from Azaria there aren’t many laughs for Mom Dad and older siblings.
For pure visual-effects wizardry and wonder you can’t beat the gang’s arrival at the Air and Space Museum where the production actually shot for a week. It’s awe-inspiring. Amelia Earhart’s encounter there with the African-American Tuskegee Airmen is also a swell touch.
NETFLIX OR MULTIPLEX?
Multiplex but drop the kids off and go shopping instead.