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<p>Suraj Sharma in &quot;Life of Pi&quot;</p>

Suraj Sharma in "Life of Pi"

Credit: 20th Century Fox

Ang Lee's 'Life of Pi' roars into the Oscar season

The visionary filmmaker taps a narrative of soul and spirit

NEW YORK -- Translating Yann Martel's award-winning novel "Life of Pi" to film has proven to be a daunting task for filmmakers kicking the tires on it for the better part of a decade, but in the hands of someone like Ang Lee, it was already getting off on the right foot. While the film, which opens the New York Film Festival this evening, takes some time revving past a clunky first act, it eventually settles into a visionary sweet spot for well over an hour. Messy though it may be, it's affecting on the whole for the truths with which it concerns itself and the journey it so passionately suggests.

The story of the film is the visual scope of the endeavor, and Lee's work with visual effects artists and cinematographer Claudio Miranda ("The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," "TRON Legacy") has produced some of the most awe-inspiring images likely to grace a screen this year. And indeed, Lee wanted that extra power, so much so that he was basically thinking of 3D before he was thinking of 3D, as he put it at a press conference this morning. "I didn't think it was possible without 3D," he said. "It needed another dimension."

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<p>Christina Aguilera in &quot;Your Body&quot;</p>

Christina Aguilera in "Your Body"

Credit: RCA

Watch: Christina Aguilera's trashy 'Your Body' vid will blow... your mind

Snooki meets 'I Love Lucy' vibe

If Christina Aguilera's freaky sex were a criminal, it'd be a serial killer. That's the point of "Your Body," which is equal parts "I Love Lucy" slapstick, Snooki and Beyonce's trailer park pin-up "Party" vid.

The colorful clip is automatically filed under "farce" with its initial warning, that no men were harmed in the making of this video. It's funny, 'cause men are sort of like animals, right? Anyway, it's nasty from the top, with Aguilera writhing in her campiest Strawberry fashions in the promise of a "killer week," trolling the bars with her lip gloss-dripping mug and gel tips, preying on stubble-sexy bro-dudes for playtime in cars, mens' bathrooms and cheap motels. And then she murders them, with an explosion of pink smoke and glitter or gratuitous splashes of blue semen-paint, strategically dripping from her mouth.

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Watch: 'Fringe' star Lance Reddick teases the final season

Watch: 'Fringe' star Lance Reddick teases the final season

Which Broyles is getting closure in these last episodes?
I was a little nervous when I sat down with Lance Reddick a couple weeks ago. 
 
It wasn't because Reddick is a terrifying man -- despite playing steely authority figures like Daniels on "The Wire" and Broyles on "Fringe" he's soft-spoken and friendly. 
 
It's just that I had already had a really good chat with Reddick at Comic-Con in July and given the secretive nature of all things "Fringe," there's sometimes a finite amount to discuss without new information.
 
Instead, my conversation with Reddick was perhaps the best of the slew of FOX-related interviews I did during the recent junket. We talked about what we can expect from Broyles in the final "Fringe" season, what it's like to approach this as a final season and what will come next for him. And despite the junket's relatively tight time confines, it's a fairly long interview, which our video guys figured would be more easily digested in two chunks. 
 
So check out the interview. The first part is above and the second part is below. I'm pretty pleased with it. 
 
And "Fringe" kicks off its final season tonight (September 28) at 9 p.m. on FOX.
 
 
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<p>Aimee Mann</p>

Aimee Mann

Credit: Sheryl Nields

HitFix Interview: Aimee Mann on new album, Patton Oswalt and bummer songs

Will that boxing musical ever get made?

Even after nine albums, Aimee Mann seems to always find a way to keep things fresh. She’s roared through concept albums, Christmas songs and soundtrack work; her last two albums “@#%&*! Smilers” and last week’s drop of “Charmer” have been decidedly pop-driven efforts, this new one with even more sonic layers and even a James Mercer duet.

But that’s not the end of Mann’s penchant for collaboration on "Charmer. She had Laura Linney star in the music video for the title track. Jon Hamm, Superchunk drummer Jon Wurster and others showed up for the clip to “Labrador,” directed by Tom Scharpling and is a shot-for-shot remake of Mann’s former band Til Tuesday’s “Voices Carry.”
 
The latter is especially representative of Mann’s all-in sensibility, whether it’s putting herself out there as a nihilist in “The Big Lebowski,” as a boxer and sport enthusiast, as a one-time-only standup comedian (“It was terrifying.”), or as an actress in Kickstarter-funded film “Pleased to Meet Me.” Musically, she’s put both feet in ‘70s- and ’80s-inspired power pop for the set.
 
Below, we talk about “Charmer” and her various relationships to film, comedy and songs about suicide.
 
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<p>&quot;Louie&quot;&nbsp;goes to a dark place in the season finale.</p>

"Louie" goes to a dark place in the season finale.

Credit: FX

Season finale review: 'Louie' - 'New Year's Eve'

Louie battles holiday depression and seems some familiar and unfamiliar faces

A review of the "Louie" season finale coming up just as soon as I throw some crayons into the skillet...

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"The Mentalist"

 "The Mentalist"

Credit: CBS

HitFix Interview: Robin Tunney talks changes ahead for 'The Mentalist'

Why Jane and Lisbon may never open 'the locked box'

"The Mentalist" will be kicking off its fifth season with new episodes Sunday, Sept. 30 at 10:00 p.m., but that's not all that's new. It's a new night for the series, which will be up against stiff competition from NBC's Sunday night football and ABC's "666 Park Avenue." Star Robin Tunney isn't scared of no programming changes… oh, wait, maybe she is. I spoke to the actress at the TCA press tour and she discussed how she really feels about the new night, what she sees happening this season, and her feelings about Jane and Lisbon opening "the locked box." 

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<p>Suraj Sharma in &quot;Life of Pi.&quot;</p>

Suraj Sharma in "Life of Pi."

Credit: Twentieth Century-Fox

Roundup: Awaiting the New York premiere of 'Life of Pi'

Also: 'Life rights' in 'The Hurt Locker,' and Kylie talks 'Holy Motors'

The New York Film Festival kicks off its golden-anniversary edition tonight with the world premiere of Ang Lee's "Life of Pi" -- Kris will be on hand to offer his thoughts. In the meantime, A.O. Scott shares his notes on the films he's seen from the lineup, including "Pi," which he describes as "a lavish reminder that film nowadays is sometimes not film at all, but rather a rapidly evolving digital art form." He also notes that it's an unusually large-scale choice of opener for an arthouse-dominated fest that kicked off with an Alain Resnais film three years ago. Have they sold out? Scott discusses. [New York Times]

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<p>Damian Lewis and Claire Danes in &quot;Homeland.&quot;</p>

Damian Lewis and Claire Danes in "Homeland."

Credit: Showtime

Review: Showtime's 'Homeland' returns strongly for season 2

It's time to stop waiting for the other shoe to drop, quality-wise

The early critical narrative about Showtime's "Homeland" was "Okay, this is a great pilot, but how do they make it work as a series?" Then it was, "Okay, it's great so far, but they're going to screw it up in the end, right?" By the end of the season, it was — mostly — "Well, that was a terrific finish, but what do they do for an encore?"

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<p>Kathryn Newton stars as a teenage girl who finds herself at the center of some unexplainable events in 'Paranormal Activity 4'</p>

Kathryn Newton stars as a teenage girl who finds herself at the center of some unexplainable events in 'Paranormal Activity 4'

Credit: Paramount Pictures

Review: 'Paranormal Activity 4' treads water instead of pushing forward

The series stumbles for the first time, but they can still correct their course

I think the "Paranormal Activity" series is fun.  Not great.  Not important.  Not a redefining series of genre films.  But fun.  2007's "Paranormal Activity" did not pick up a distributor right away, and it didn't hit theaters until September 2009, with Paramount treating it almost as an experiment.  It caught fire and it quickly became evident that the studio was going to want a follow-up.  Oren Peli, who wrote and directed the original, stepped into a more supervisory position, and as he started branching out with projects like "The River" and the still-unreleased "Area 51," he helped other people build out the mythology that he started.

Tod Williams directed the sequel, and Michael R. Perry and Christopher Landon and Tom Pabst all contributed to the script.  It expanded the world a bit and started to try to make sense of what happened to Katie (Katie Featherston) and Michah (Micah Sloat) in the first film.  It carefully built the big set pieces so it leaned on the exact same sort of scares that the first film did, but with a baby right there in the middle of things.  The film ended with an upsetting cliffhanger of sorts with Katie making off with young Hunter (William Juan Pietro), and part three went back in time to the '80s to show Katie and her sister Kristi as kids, bringing in co-directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman to work with with Christopher Landon, who returned as the sole writer this time. I think the last fifteen minutes or so of "Paranormal Activity 3" is the scariest sustained sequence in any of the movies, and I thought it set up a really interesting broader canvass for the films.  When I saw that Joost and Schulman were coming back to direct the fourth film, I thought the movie was in great hands, and I was excited to see what they came up with.

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Chris Colfer and Sarah Jessica Parker on 'Glee'

Chris Colfer and Sarah Jessica Parker strike a pose at Vogue.com on "Glee"

Credit: Fox

'Glee' recap: 'Makeover' introduces Sarah Jessica Parker

High school elections and New York fashionistas combine for a light, fun hour

I love Ian Brennan's vision for "Glee."

"Makeover," which "Glee" co-creator Brennan wrote and Eric Stoltz directed, wasn't a Very Special episode like last week's "Britney 2.0." There was no musical icon to celebrate or serious social issue to tackle. There was a special guest star in Sarah Jessica Parker, but Brennan knows how to write to that having previously penned Gwyneth Paltrow's debut episode "The Substitute" and Ricky Martin's "The Spanish Teacher."

More importantly, Brennan knows how to keep "Glee" light on its feet. "Makeover" was both the most relaxed and best episode we've seen so far in Season 4. We're still making progress.

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"Project Runway"

 "Project Runway"

Credit: Lifetime

'Project Runway' recap: 'It's Fashion Baby'

It's a baby design challenge - complete with screaming dolls

Can you believe Ven is gone? I know; it's a huge relief. Anyway, the designers feel the same way, and not just because they were so sick of that fan/flower trick they wanted to yank their own teeth to distract themselves from the searing pain of seeing it over and over and OVER again. But Ven's timely exit has left them a little shaken -- and focused on getting to Lincoln Center. Christopher, however, is feeling confident, having won three challenges. I think Christopher may be getting a little smug, really.

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<p>Lucy Liu and Jonny Lee Miller are Dr. Watson and Sherlock Holmes in &quot;Elementary.&quot;</p>

Lucy Liu and Jonny Lee Miller are Dr. Watson and Sherlock Holmes in "Elementary."

Credit: CBS

Series premiere review: 'Elementary' - 'Pilot'

What did everybody think of the new CBS mystery?

I posted my review of CBS' "Elementaryyesterday. Now it's your turn. For those who tuned in tonight, what did you think? Was it too easy to compare it to either "Sherlock" or "The Mentalist" (or any other CBS procedural) to enjoy, or were Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu interesting enough to make it work? If you're a Sherlock Holmes fan, did this feel like a fair take on the character? Did you figure out where the story was going before Holmes and Dr. Watson did? And will you watch again?

Have at it.

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