Author

Jordan Smith
  • 'Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D' Recap: Trust the System
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 13, 2013
    ABC Mission Briefing: This week's malady involves a separatist group from South Ossetia that has built a weapon called "The Overkill Device," which can trigger missiles and nuclear weapons from a great distance. The device will seriously complicate any outright assault that S.H.I.E.L.D. makes on them. A two-man team is needed to move in and disable the device covertly. Too bad the agents chosen don't know it's a suicide mission. The Agents:The unlikely pair of Fitz and Agent Ward need to get over their differences in order infiltrate the separatist base and stop the attack.  Mission Fallout: Fitz and Ward are able to stop "The Overkill Device" but not before getting in some quality male bonding in a Russian drainpipe. It’s nice to see the show pair together characters in ways we haven’t seen yet. Fitz is quickly turning into the show’s most dynamic character. Meanwhile, Skye and Simmons seek out more information on Fitz and Ward's mission but realize that S.H.I.E.L.D didn't provide any extraction plans for the two agents. Good thing Coulson calls in the cavalry for a quick extraction without S.H.I.E.L.D.'s say-so. We also learn more about Skye’s past via the redacted S.H.I.E.L.D. file. Coulson still knows some intel that he isn’t ready to give to Skye just yet. Plus, Coulson starts to pry into his mysterious resurrection, but finds that there's some information that not even he has access to. Mission Highlights:-It's great to see the S.H.I.E.L.D. organization expanded with the introduction of The Hub. Sometimes it can feel like the whole of S.H.I.E.L.D. is only made up of Coulson and his crew on the jet. Hopefully the new characters and the organization at large gets featured more in upcoming episodes.-Simmons failing at flirting and then shooting a superior officer with the night-night gun is fun, but are there ever any consequences for breaking the rules at S.H.I.E.L.D.? Shooting a higher-up with a tranquillizer should at least involve a meeting with HR.-It’s nice to see Skye reacting wearily to S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Draconian protocols while everyone else readily excepts them. Her perspective gives the show and the S.H.I.E.L.D. organization some much needed grey areas.  Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //
  • Where Does Angelina Jolie's 'Maleficent' Look Stand Among Other Live Action Disney Villains?
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 12, 2013
    It's no secret that playing the bad guy is always more interesting than playing a good guy. Being a moustache-twirling baddie is just heaps more fun than being a dour princess or some goody two shoes Prince Charming. Angelina Jolie is sure privy to this fact in a new poster for Maleficent. The poster features our first glimpse of the sneering villain, and Jolie gives the camera her best glare with piercing green eyes that are packed with wicked intentions. While we have to wait for Maleficent to send a chill down our spine this summer, why not assess some of the most wicked looking live-action Disney villains? Captain Hook (Hook)Dustin Hoffman isn't terribly threatening since he's clearly pushing up the camp in Hook's modernized retelling of the Peter Pan myth. In fact he's sort of a lame-o, but he does win some points for that glorious mustache of his. Just think about how many times he could twirl that thing as he thinks of the best ways to flay Robin Williams alive. Plus, "RUFIOOOOO!" Cruella De Vil (101 Dalmatians)The one thing that makes us angrier than killing Rufio is trying to turn 101 puppies into speckled coats that would have been super tacky by the time they got made anyway. Glen Close's Cruella De Vil gets this spot easily. Plus her crazy two-tone hair is more than a little unsettling. Ravenna (Snow White and The Huntsman)Charlize Theron might have been the only one really flexing their acting muscles in Snow White in the Huntsman and flex them she did because she looked monumentally terrifying in that movie. That scowl she puts on when that weird mirror of hers picks Snow White over her still gives us nightmares, but so does Kristen Stewart's acting. Maleficent (Maleficent)We obviously haven't seen the film yet, but we can safetly put Jolie's Maleficent on this list by just looking at the poster. From her sallow white skin to her blood red lips, she might as well as be evil personified if she's as terrifying in the film as she is in this first image. Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //
  • 'Cabin in the Woods' Director Drew Goddard Takes on 'Daredevil' Netflix Series
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 12, 2013
    Splash News It looks like "The Man Without Fear" has nothing to worry about after all. According to The Wrap, Daredevil might land in the very capable hands of Drew Goddard, who is in talks to write and produce Netflix's upcoming series featuring the character. Goddard already has a plethora of experience with genre television and film. He has written for sci-fi television shows such as Alias, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Lost, and Angel, as well as co-writing the zombie flick World War Z, and writing and directing last year's genre-subverting horror comedy The Cabin in the Woods. Hopefully, Goddard has picked up a few things from buddy and frequent collaborator Joss Whedon, who has written his own share of comic books and directed the biggest comic book movie of them all, The Avengers. Daredevil is a difficult hero to get down tonally, as can clearly seen when Ben Affleck picked up the billy clubs in the 2003's first live-action attempt. The character's version of New York City has air of film noir flowing through its streets, and those sensibilities need to mesh with the undeniable camp that comes with men dressing up in tights to fight crime. Goddard says that he is a Daredevil buff with a good knowledge of the character so hopefully he can do the hero justice (no pun intended). We've been impressed by Goddard's contributions to geek culture so far, so we're looking forward to his take on the Marvel hero. Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //
  • What the Heck is Going on in This Selena Gomez Short Film?
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 12, 2013
      Selena Gomez is on the cover of the December issue of Flaunt Magazine, and along with her cover spot comes a short film that bares the inner-soul of a pop star. You'd need a liberal arts degree and a healthy dose of pretension to try to decipher meaning out of this black and white piece, and since we at Hollywood.com have both of those in spades, let's see what universal truths we can ring out of a three minute internet video. The film titled Searching opens with thin strips of sunlight slipping through the clouds and hitting the mangled sign for the Rosslyn Hotel. We see Selena staring pensively out of her hotel room window. Since this is a short film, there's going to be a lot of pensive staring. Everything is black and white because monochrome makes things 30 percent more deep and meaningful. Next, we see Selena in bed with a hunky guy wearing an expression that says "Oh my God! I think I left the iron on at home." The two of them the appear in a series of shots where they struggle to produce believable chemistry together before Selena sets off on her search. She walks through the halls of the hotel as paint peels from the ceiling overhead. We ask ourselves what the pop starlet could be doing in such a run down hotel?  Maybe life isn't going the way she wanted. Selena bumps into someone with a face mask that bares more than a passing resemblence to Ms. Gomez herself (oohhh spooky!) de Cadanet & Mahoney/Flaunt Selena walks the streets of LA searching for whoever she's looking for, but she can only seem to find unhelpful runway models dressed in designer clothing throughout the whole city. Time then starts to move backwards (What does this mean? I don't know but it's probably super deep). We then see Selena sprawled in her hotel room's bed, her search unsuccessful. The camera pans out, and we finally get a glimpse of the person she was searching for...It's a picture of Selena herself (whoa man this is like Inception-level deep). Why is Selena searching for a version of herself with longer hair? In our opinion, it seems that Selena wants to go back in time to Wizards of Waverly Place. A time with longer hair, more colors, and before Spring Breakers was ever made. A time filled with the pastel colors and the simple plots of a Disney channel sitcom. She wants to be that person she was before but she can't. Now she's the type of person that stars in obnoxious short films for fashion magazines. Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //
  • PG-13 Movies Have More Gun Violence Than R-Rated Movies
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 11, 2013
    Walt Disney Co/Everett Collection As the issue of the gun's place in American homes rages on, guns have certainly found a home in modern cinema. A recent study has found that depictions of firearm violence in films rated PG-13 has tripled since 1985, and has even risen above the amount of gun violence in R-rated films. Gun violence and mass shootings continue to rattle our nation, but they have become ubiquitous in our country's most popular films. Why is this the case? The PG-13 rating was originally introduced in 1985 as a response to two films: Gremlins and Indiana Jones and Temple of Doom. These films straddled the line between children's and adults' entertainment and forced the MPAA to create the new rating. Since then, the PG-13 rating has quickly become the most profitable with seven of the Top 10 films in 2012 receiving the rating. It has become the proven rating for summer blockbusters that want to sweep with the widest broom possible. It's the rating that can cater adult interests while also not restricting children from the theater, resulting in more ticket stubs and more money for the studio. Because of this, many studios aim for this profitable middle ground for their biggest releases, and the top profiting films are usually ones filled with heavy special effects and gun violence. Even gun heavy R-rated franchises have tuned down the gore, language, and sexual content to acquire the much sought after PG-13 rating. Film series like The Terminator, Die Hard, and the Alien series were originally R-rated franchises that released neutered PG-13 sequels. In a political and social climate where gun violence has become such a sensitive issue, should filmmakers and studios continue to make films filled with gun violence accessible to teens and children? The gun has a long history in film and programming. The original Lone Ranger always wore a colt on his hip as he dispensed justice in the Old West, and Indiana Jones always carried a pistol next to his bull whip. Violence is one of humanity's most basic conflicts — there's a reason why we keep falling back to it for our plots. By our very nature, we are titilated by it, and violence has been a part of the stories we've told each other since the earliest days of storytelling. Violence creates drama, and drama creates movies, and whether it be physical violence, emotional violence, or gun violence, it's something that our brains and hearts are wired to react to, but that doesn't mean onscreen violence leads to violence in real life. While films catering to teens could certainly be more creative in the ways they create conflict than always falling back to violence, and particularly gun violence, this doesn't mean that filmmakers or studios should be barred from creating the films that they want to create. Maybe the answer isn't to restrict the use of guns in film, but to increase the discussion with our children on the differences between what happens on the silver screen and what happens in reality. Follow @Hollywood_com //
  • 'Downton Abbey' Is Renewed for Season 5
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 11, 2013
    Carnival Film and Television/PBS Even though the fourth season of Downton Abbey has yet to make landfall on American shores, the hit British soap has already been renewed for a fifth season. The fourth season of the show, which just wrapped up accross the pond, scored huge numbers with British audiences, and is expected to remain a big hit in the states when the season makes its American debut on January 5.  Downton's fifth season will begin production next year with Julian Fellowes contunuing to serve as writer. In a statement, executive producer Gareth Neame said, "Audiences have enjoyed their regular Sunday evening visits back to Downton once again this autumn and we are thrilled to produce a new series of the show next year. We promise all the usual highs and lows, romance, drama and comedy played out by some of the most iconic characters on television. All the actors and makers of the show continue to be humbled by the extraordinary audience response and want to take the show from strength to strength next year." The upcoming fifth season of Downton Abbey will likely make it's American premiere sometime in early 2015. Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //
  • Crime-Solving Zombies? 'Veronica Mars' Creator Rob Thomas to Adapt 'iZombie' TV Show
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 08, 2013
    Vertigo/DC Comics It looks like The Vampire Diaries will be getting a new zombie neighbor. Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas and writer Diane Ruggiero are teaming up with The CW to adapt the DC/Vertigo comic iZombie into a drama series. The original comic book tells the story of a med student turned zombie who needs to eat brains in order to retain her humanity, but with each brain she devours, she gains the corpse's memories (a concept similar to the book-turned-movie Warm Bodies). The heroine uses these memories to solve homicide cases. The premise of this oddball zombie series is also reminiscent of Pushing Daisies, a quirky show about a pie maker who could bring the dead back to life with a single touch, and used his powers to solve their mysteries.  But crime-solving med student zombies? You might balk at the very idea, though television execs are champing at the bits to create anything even tangentially related to zombies into a television hit, and how can they not when there's an impossibly large portion of the country tuning into The Walking Dead every week. This iZombie series seems to be a conflation of two distinctly different markets in the television world. Since that mythical era called the 1990s, the medical drama and the police procedural have ruled the the television airwaves. In the past few years, we've seen an upswing in supernatural shows grabbing for the small screen throne, with programs like Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, and The Vampire Diaries becoming some of TV's most watched and talked about shows. iZombie seems to be the result of these two genres mashed together with the force of a high speed locomotive. The results are something that represents the changing trends of television in one crime-solving, brain-eating hour of television drama. We have a feeling that this show will either be brilliant or undead on arrival. Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //
  • 'Hunger Games,' 'Ender's Game,' or 'Funny Games': Which Movie Game Would You Like to Play?
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 07, 2013
    Lionsgate Cinematic audiences just love watching people thrown into the gauntlet of competition... but games in film aren't anything like schoolyard tag or hide-and-go seek, unless your version of hide-and-go seek had pistols or mutant dogs. Hollywood's biggest "games" tend to be deadly, dangerous, and dehumanizing. But if you had to pick, which of these movie games would you most like to play? The Hunger GamesThe big mean Capitol rips 24 starving children from their homes so that they can starve on live TV. But now they're starving while fighting to the death. Such great television! The last child alive wins and gets a big house to live in... not in the fancy Capitol, of course. Can't have that District riff raff mixing into society. You still have to live in your poor, decrepit neighborhood. But at least your house is bigger than your neighbors'.Fun Level: 2 Ender’s GameIn Ender’s Game, Ender has to spend his childhood on a space station where he plays simulated battles that will train him to fight off an alien invasion. If he fails and the aliens blow up the Earth, he'll have to deal with been reminded incessantly of how he let down the human race. Oh, wait, no, everyone would be dead. But hey, at least he went to space camp.Fun Level: 5 The Game In The Game, Nicholas Van Orton is given the gift of an interactive game whose sole purpose is to ruin his life to such an immeasurable degree that he leaps off of a building at the end of the film just to get away from it all. You know what, how about next year you just get him a nice card, or a fruitcake? Yes, even a fruitcake would be better. A fruitcake.Fun Level: 2.5 Funny Games You think you're going to enjoy a peaceful weekend at the old lake house when a couple of creepy blond guys dressed in white bust in wanting some eggs. Next thing you know, they've broken your leg, killed your dog, and tortured your family. Oh, and they also have a tendency for breaking the fourth wall and warping reality... so things are really looking up for you this vacation. You should have just went to Disneyland. People don't kill you at Disneyland. Well... usually.Fun Level: -5 ConclusionAvoid movie games at all cost. Except The Movie Game, that one's usually a good time. Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //
  • Justice Gets a Sleek Upgrade in 'Robocop' Trailer
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 07, 2013
    The best player in the World for movie trailers, Hollywood interviews and movie clips. We’ve thrown a lot of stuff out as a society since the 80’s. Gone are the days of blown out hair, neon colors, and absurd violence at the movie theaters. We've shed a lot of excess in the three decades since, resulting in things being sleeker, suits cut slimmer, and everything looking leaner and more minimalist. Even our dystopian-future-Detroit-area-super-cop-social-commentary action films have gotten a slick upgrade, ironing out the distinctive kinks in the process. A new trailer for Robocop was just released and the film seems to have gotten rid of its Reagan-era weirdness in favor of a more straightforward tear through the themes of imperialism, overpowered corporations, and fascism.  In the trailer, a corporation named Omnicorp wants to put its police drones on the streets, but is rebuffed by a public too "robophobic" to allow it. CEO Raymond Sellars (Michael Keaton) decides that all they need is a machine with a human touch to ease the public into the idea of a robotic police force, and just as luck would have it, Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman) has blown himself to bits just in the nick of time. Murphy is rebuilt into a one-man war on crime, but unlike its baby blue predecessor, this Robocop is fitted with cleaner edges and a sleek black profile that screams modern sensibilities. MGM/Columbia It was always going to be a tricky maneuver rebooting Robocop; a series with an '80s Detroit so hard-coded in its base DNA sequence that even the idea of creating a version for today's audience feels like a taboo right out of the gate. Hopefully, this new film will have new things to say about our modern era, while it's busy blowing stuff in Detroit the hell up. Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //
  • Netflix and Marvel Team Up for Four Original Superhero Series
    By: Jordan Smith Nov 07, 2013
    Mike Allred/Marvel Disney and Netflix are having their own superhero assembly, but one with noticeably fewer capes and cowls, and more business suits and risk-assessment meetings. The two media mega-giants have come together to create not one but four Netflix original live-action series based on various Marvel properties, plus a mini series event to cap things off. Starting in 2015, Netflix will roll out with a 13-episode Daredevil series, followed by additional series featuring Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and Jessica Jones. After this initial rush of individual series, The streaming service will finish up with a mini series event based on Marvel's team up comic The Defenders. For Marvel and Disney, this is a chance to expose its casual movie fans to the depths of its comic book catalogue by featuring characters that wouldn't necessarily show up in an Avengers Initiative movie. Some of these characters have already made the jump from ink to live-action, but others haven't seen much life outside the panels of comic books. The characters chosen for this new crop of series also have the benefit of being more diverse, but not only in racial terms, but storytelling ones as well. Characters like Luke Cage and Jessica Jones have powers and problems that differ greatly from the square-jawed sameness that fills the ranks of the cinematic version of the Avengers. Over the past 40 years, comic books have prided themselves with being one of media's most forward thinking entertainment mediums, and it's nice to see that their live-action offerings are catching up with the original illustrated inspirations. For Netflix, this is just another step in their steady effort to reprogram the way people think about television. The company has shown that it is a force to be reckoned with its original series Orange Is the New Black and House of Cards. Hopefully this foray into superheroes will continue Netflix's winning streak of crafting quality television hits tailor-made for long unproductive binge sessions. Follow @Hollywood_com // Follow @CurrentlyJordan //