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<p>Ke$ha's &quot;Warrior&quot;</p>

Ke$ha's "Warrior"

Credit: RCA Records

Album Review: Ke$ha's looking for nothing but a good time on 'Warrior'

The night goes on forever on her new set

On 2010’s “Animal”and its companion follow-up, “Cannibal,” Ke$ha sounded like a bratty little sister to Pink and Katy Perry. On “Warrior,”  out Dec. 4, she makes her bid to push them out of the way for good and makes a case for her disposable, of-the-moment, liquor-soaked, trashy pop.

Ke$ha’s music provides the template for wanna-be party girls, who start to get itchy for the weekend around Wednesday afternoon. Just like those girls, who teeter precariously on 6-inch stilettos about to topple over outside of clubs that won’t let them in, her music feels just as precarious. It’s well-crafted in its patchwork fashion, but feels like it could fall apart at any moment and won’t be remembered in the headachy haze of Sunday morning’s hangover.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Jessica Chastain in &quot;Zero Dark Thirty.&quot;</p>

Jessica Chastain in "Zero Dark Thirty."

Credit: Sony Pictures

‘Zero Dark Thirty’ comes out of hiding with best picture win as NYFCC stirs things up

Some unconventional picks for the east coast crew

If the New York Film Critics Circle believed they might cause a commotion with a number of their 2012 selections, they certainly succeeded in rattling the awards season boat.  The NYFCC, like their Los Angeles counterparts, have rarely gone with the collective wisdom unless it’s the best picture or best director category.  This year? They made sure Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” remained a centerpiece in the best picture race with honors for best actor (a very deserving Daniel Day-Lewis), best screenplay (cultural touchstone Tony Kushner) and, um, best supporting actress (Sally Field).  Where they really stirred things up was by giving the season’s first major kudos to “Zero Dark Thirty" and pretty much anointing best actress and best supporting actors out of left field.

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Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, episode 159: 'You Don't Know Bo,' 'Boardwalk Empire,' 'The Walking Dead' & more

Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, episode 159: 'You Don't Know Bo,' 'Boardwalk Empire,' 'The Walking Dead' & more

Dan and Alan also review the latest 'Homeland' and weigh in on the 'Boy Meets World' sequel


It's a post-mortem heavy episode of the Firewall & Iceberg Podcast, as Dan and I deal with Sunday night's episodes of "Boardwalk Empire," "The Walking Dead" and "Homeland," in addition to reviewing the latest "30 for 30" documentary and answering a bunch of mail.

The line-up: 

"You Don't Know Bo" (00:01:15 - 00:10:10)
Listener Mail - Young performers and the Emmys (00:10:30 - 00:21:15)
Listener Mail - "Girl Meets World" (00:21:15 - 00:32:30)
Listener Mail - "Under the Dome" (00:32:40 - 00:37:10)
Listener Mail - Slow-playing cancellations (00:37:15 - 00:44:15)
"Boardwalk Empire" (00:44:30 - 00:59:20)
"The Walking Dead" (00:59:20 - 01:09:58)
"Homeland" (01:10:00 - 00:1:24:15)
As always, you can subscribe to The Firewall & Iceberg Podcast over at the iTunes Store, where you can also rate us and comment on us. Or you can always follow our RSS Feed, download the MP3 file or stream it on Dan's blog.
And as always, feel free to e-mail us questions for the podcast.
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Credit: ABC

Review: It's getting hella crazy, so why is 'Revenge' so addictive?

Amanda and Jack's relationship isn't the only dysfunctional one

If you're a fan of "Revenge," you know that (spoilers!) Jack is finally figuring out his great new business partners aren't so great, Ashley is out, Marco appears to be in and Daniel has become a more ruthless ass than his own father, which is saying something. If you're not a fan of "Revenge," it's hardly worth explaining the plot. Not only will the twists and turns possibly make your head explode, reading them laid out in cold, hard print will probably make you either cackle, roll your eyes, gag or all three. No one ever said this melodrama about one young woman's quest to avenge her father's death and bring down a mysterious entity called The Initiative (yes, laugh) made a lot of sense. So why is it so darn addictive?

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<p>&quot;How to Survive a Plague&quot;</p>

"How to Survive a Plague"

Credit: Sundance Selects

'Central Park Five,' 'Queen of Versailles,' 'West of Memphis' shafted by Academy's doc branch

15 titles proceed in a competitive year for the category

More good timing as the Academy has announced its shortlist of 15 advancing titles in the Best Documentary Feature race after Anne and I discussed the field at length on the podcast Friday. And it naturally figures that most of the films we talked about were not passed through.

The biggest omission to my eyes is "The Queen of Versailles," one of the best films of the year -- doc or narrative -- period. Maybe they didn't like that filmmaker Lauren Greenfield lucked into her story, but that film is of the moment and vital as all hell. Alas, this is to be expected. Great stuff is so often skipped over, and it appears the new rules and regs did little to alter that course.

Also left off the list: "West of Memphis," which is just a travesty. I get worked up every year on this shortlist and I'll try not to now, but Amy Berg's film is a monument. Ditto "The Central Park Five," which just won the New York Film Critics Circle prize for non-fiction film this morning and now has to deal with this.

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<p>Arcade Fire</p>

Arcade Fire

Credit: AP Photo

Arcade Fire played new music at a secret show this weekend

Why you can't hear it yet

Arcade Fire are definitely on track to releasing new music in the coming year, especially since they're previewing even more of it at secret shows.

The Montreal-based rock crew performed a tiny show in their hometown this weekend according to fan site Arcade Fire Tube, and apparently the tunes are dance-worthy, if at the least upbeat. Only around 100 people were present for the show. The group were billed under the name Les Identiks.

So where's the blurry live video with some loud dude talking over the sound of the bar's clinking glasses? All those clued in to the performances swore to a no-phone, no-video, no-photo and no-recording policy.

Arcade Fire played a new song "Crucified Again" at a benefit show earlier this fall, you can see that here. Because those guys didn't have the same policy.

Arcade Fire's last album "The Suburbs" was released in August 2010.

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<p>&quot;Zero&nbsp;Dark&nbsp;Thirty&quot;&nbsp;director Kathryn&nbsp;Bigelow</p>

"Zero Dark Thirty" director Kathryn Bigelow

Credit: Columbia Pictures

'Zero Dark Thirty' wins Best Picture and Best Director from New York Film Critics Circle

'Lincoln' wins three prizes, for Actor, Supporting Actress and Screenplay

Last year, the New York Film Critics' Circle rather set the pace for the season by handing their two top awards to “The Artist.” (They also set eventual Best Actress Oscar winner Meryl Streep on her way.) This year, however, they're more likely to mix the conversation up in a few crucial areas. Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress and Best Supporting Actor got a fresh injection in lieu of frontrunner rallying, while the group's selection of Kathryn Bigelow's "Zero Dark Thirty" in the Best Picture and Best Director categories puts it at the top of the Oscar heap.

Check out the full list of winners below and remember to keep track of all the goings on throughout the season at The Circuit.

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<p>The Killers' &quot;I Feel It In My Bones&quot;</p>

The Killers' "I Feel It In My Bones"

Listen: The Killers' new Christmas single 'I Feel It In My Bones'

Festive romp benefits charity

Christmas brings with it mistletoe, egg nog, elves, Santa, and, for the last six years, a charity single from The Killers.

The Las Vegas-based group revealed its seven annual stocking stuffer, “I Feel It In My Bones,” over the weekend on In the retro, ringing, ‘80s  guitar-driven rocker, Brandon Flowers is writing his annual letter to Santa, and their relationship has been, to put it bluntly, a little rocky. Santa still thinks he’s been a little more naughty than nice and it’s going to take a lot of convincing to talk him out of delivering a lump of coal.

“Hey Kringle, you mean to say when you were young, it never got wild,” Flowers calls out to Santa, who’s having none of it and has decided to make an example out of this bad boy.  

Amid the ringing sleigh bells and hollow-sounding “Ho, ho, ho,” this Santa has one heck of a sinister laugh going on that would even give the Grinch the willies.

The band’s drummer, Ronnie Vannucci, told NME that the song is a “reworking” of a demo from  “Battle Born” writing sessions. "This song was basically started a while back and we just finished it and changed it into more of a Christmas song. It was mixed by Alan Moulder, he did it when we were over in the UK a couple of weeks ago."

The big-hearted (if not-big boned) rockers will donate all proceeds from the sale of the song to (RED), which fights the spread of HIV/AIDS in Africa. It will be available starting Dec. 4 on iTunes.  A video, shot in both the U.K. and Las Vegas, will be released shortly.

Hear the track here.


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<p>&quot;Wreck-It Ralph&quot;</p>

"Wreck-It Ralph"

Credit: Walt Disney Pictures

'Brave,' 'Guardians' and 'Wreck-It Ralph' lead 40th annual Annie Awards nominees

'Hotel Transylvania' and 'ParaNorman' not too far behind

The nominations for the 40th annual Annie Awards were announced today, and Disney had to be all smiles with 27 nominations across four feature films in play. And it was "Brave" and "Wreck-It Ralph" from that stable that led the pack, along with DreamWorks Animation's "Rise of the Guardians," with 10 nominations apiece.

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<p>Jessica Chastain in &quot;Zero&nbsp;Dark&nbsp;Thirty&quot;</p>

Jessica Chastain in "Zero Dark Thirty"

Credit: Columbia Pictures

Off the Carpet: The critics close ranks

With NYFCC, LAFCA and more on the way, what films will get a boost?

Earlier today we launched this season's edition of The Circuit, which will track the ups and downs of the precursor circuit from the critics awards to the guild announcements all the way through the Oscars and more. But things will get serious later this afternoon as the New York Film Critics Circle sits down to hold its annual vote.

The job of the critics this time of year is to be honest about their view of quality, yes, but also to stand up for titles and individuals lost in the shuffle. Sometimes those calls line up with Oscar, sometimes not, but the road begins to get paved with these announcements. And the narrowing process -- particularly in a shortened phase one window -- is crucial.

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<p>Nicole Kidman in &quot;The Paperboy.&quot;</p>

Nicole Kidman in "The Paperboy."

Credit: Millennium Entertainment

Roundup: Making the case for Nicole Kidman

Also: 'War Witch' wins at Camerimage, and Ang Lee's 'Life of Liberty Valance'

Oscar buzz is a strange, unscientific and totally intangible thing -- even contenders being left out of the precursor can generate their own conversation with some assistance from the blogosphere. Nathaniel Rogers calls it The Noise, and right now he's hearing it for Nicole Kidman, whose Oscar chances for a brilliant out-of-character turn in Lee Daniels' "The Paperboy" initially seemed to be shot down with the film's critical savaging. But Kidman's doing a stealth campaign, calling up sympathetic interviewers (including our own Greg Ellwood) herself, and it's paying off with some press at just the right time. Could she crack a still-thin Best Supporting Actress category? Though I think she's really a lead in "The Paperboy," I hope so, and so does Rogers: "You'd have to bring Daniel Day-Lewis's Honest Abe into the room to give her a worthy opponent for impossible commitment to the role," he writes. [The Film Experience]

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"The Real Housewives of Atlanta"

 "The Real Housewives of Atlanta"

Credit: Bravo

'The Real Housewives of Atlanta' recap: 'No Excuse for Excuses'

Kim storms off in a huff and Kenya eyes Phaedra's husband

So, this is the episode (and I'm not giving anything away here) which drives Kim to rip off her microphone, storm away from her castmates, and pull that ghetto move which involves grabbing the camera and cussing out the poor videographer holding it. Yes, it's a classy episode of "RHoA," complete with Kegal balls, breast obsession, fibroid tumors and Black Babygate. Yeah, no wonder Kim wanted off the show. With all this drama, her whining about having to downsize to a 7,000 square foot townhouse almost seems sane. 

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