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<p>On &quot;How I&nbsp;Met Your Mother,&quot;&nbsp;Robin and Lily try to cure Barney's hangover.</p>

On "How I Met Your Mother," Robin and Lily try to cure Barney's hangover.

Credit: CBS

Talkback: 'How I Met Your Mother' - 'Rally'

The gang tries to get Barney over his wedding day hangover

Tonight's "How I Met Your Mother" kicked off the final six-episode stretch of the series' run, and did so in a way that focused as much on the gang's past and future as their present at the Farhampton Inn, including glimpses of Marshall's campaign for New York Supreme Court justice, young Marvin's first day of college and a big night for Ted and the Mother. And, if nothing else, the stuff in the present had a lot of bacon.

So what did you guys think? An entertaining trip through time, or more of the same dopiness of this final season? Did the kiss and/or the Weekend at Barney's gags live up to the years of build-up? Have at it.

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<p>Chiwetel Ejiofor after winning the BAFTA for Best Actor.</p>

Chiwetel Ejiofor after winning the BAFTA for Best Actor.

Credit: AP Photo/Jonathan Short

Chiwetel Ejiofor on responsibility and the necessity of violence in '12 Years a Slave'

The BAFTA-winning actor is looking to spoil in the Best Actor race

Chiwetel Ejiofor's recent BAFTA win for Best Actor was a sweet victory for the 36-year-old actor, and not just because it came on home turf. Eight years previously, the Londoner scored (and lost) his first BAFTA nod in the Rising Star category. Last Sunday's win, atop a slew of recent honors for his imposing turn as freeman-turned-slave Solomon Northup in "12 Years a Slave" -- including, of course, his first Oscar nomination -- underlined the fact that his star has now risen. Long a promising standout in films as diverse as "Dirty Pretty Things," "Kinky Boots" and "Redbelt," the stage-trained star has now asserted himself as a leading man of formidable presence and intelligence.

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Oscars Lowdown 2014: Best Supporting Actress - Nyong'o vs. Lawrence in a tale of two ingenues

Oscars Lowdown 2014: Best Supporting Actress - Nyong'o vs. Lawrence in a tale of two ingenues

84-year-old June Squibb looks on from the sidelines

In the lead-up to the 86th annual Academy Awards on March 2, HitFix will be bringing you the lowdown on all 24 Oscar categories with multiple entries each day. Take a few notes and bone up on the competition as we give you the edge in your office Oscar pool!

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Album review: Beck's melancholy, gorgeous 'Morning Phase'
Credit: Capitol Records

Album review: Beck's melancholy, gorgeous 'Morning Phase'

Has he made 2014's first great album?

Beck hasn’t been particularly prolific lately when it comes to new studio music.  Sure, he’s been busy recording cover albums, producing artists like Thurston Moore and Charlotte Gainsbourg, and collaborating with McSweeney’s on the “Song Reader” sheet-music project, but it’s been more than five years since the release of 2008’s “Modern Guilt.” That break ends tomorrow (24)  with “Morning Phase” tomorrow.

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<p>Harold Ramis and a Twinkie = comedy gold</p>

Harold Ramis and a Twinkie = comedy gold

Credit: Columbia Pictures

How meeting comedy giant Harold Ramis exceeded any expectations I had

He was one of the greats, both on-screen and off

There are very few perfect films.

Part of what makes films so beautiful and rich and rewarding is that they are the result of a sort of mass insanity that happens when you have all of these people all pushing to create something tangible, something that moves us to some sort of real emotional place. It's easy to forget that movies are ultimately a bunch of people standing around playing make-believe, but with a crew there to capture it all. Considering how many moving pieces there are in any film, it's almost miraculous when they actually come together coherently, much less in a way that manages to make us genuinely lose ourselves in what we're watching.

Harold Ramis made a perfect movie. "Groundhog Day" is one of the few mainstream comedies that I think actually grows and gets richer and more wonderful the more you revisit it, something which seems especially apt considering how the film is structured. The original Danny Rubin script was a damn fine starting point, but it was Ramis who polished that script into the gem it is, as great a piece of commercial movie writing as "Back To The Future," and in scene after scene, Ramis is so on-point as a director that it's sort of humbling. "Groundhog Day" is what it looks like when someone is so in the zone that they can't get it wrong, when everything clicks on every level, and it may be the best of Bill Murray's big comedy performance. Again, that's apt considering the history Murray shares with Ramis, and while the collaboration they had on this evidently ended their personal and professional relationships, at least we'll always have this moment, this particular high point for both of them, and we can cherish that.

When I got the news via phone call this morning that Ramis had passed away, it hit me much harder than most celebrity deaths do, and I'm still struggling to fully articulate why that is.

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<p>George Clooney, Sandra Bullock and Alfonso Cuaron at the October screening of &quot;Gravity&quot;&nbsp;in New York.</p>

George Clooney, Sandra Bullock and Alfonso Cuaron at the October screening of "Gravity" in New York.

Credit: AP Photo

Alfonso Cuarón on the global 'emotional' appeal of 'Gravity' and the 'Believe' break

Plus: What's he doing after Oscar Sunday?

Alfonso Cuarón is on top of the world. Granted, he's not literally on top or above it like his characters in "Gravity," but when I spoke to him after the Oscars luncheon a little over a week ago, he was awash in the moment. In many ways, the long journey of his Oscar-nominated blockbuster is finally coming to a close, and like a marathon runner nearing the finish line, he's got his second wind.

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'The Walking Dead' destroys NBC’s Olympic coverage for 3rd straight week


“The Walking Dead” destroys NBC’s Olympic coverage for 3rd straight week
About 13.1 million tuned in for last night’s episode. PLUS: 12.7 million watched “Nancy & Tonya."


Jimmy Fallon plans to do the Chicago Polar Plunge this weekend

“The Tonight Show” host and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel in plunging into Lake Michigan.


“NCIS” will address the death of Ralph Waite’s character
The CBS drama wants to do something to "honor both the memory of Ralph, as well as the character of Jackson Gibbs,” a CBS spokesperson says of the former “Waltons” patriarch.


Janet McTeer joins Vince Gilligan’s “Battle Creek”
She’ll play a police commander in the drama series created by the “Breaking Bad” creator, which will be run by “House” creator David Shore. PLUS: More pilot castings: Hope Davis and Margarita Levieva for NBC’s “Coercion,” and Amanda Detmer for “Sea of Fire."


Alec Baldwin & Piers Morgan trade sympathies on Twitter
"I want to say to @piersmorgan I hope you are back on the air very soon, wherever that may be…” Baldwin tweeted to Morgan, who responded: “Thanks Alec, ditto.”

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Oscars Lowdown 2014: Best Makeup and Hairstyling - 'Dallas' squares off with 'Grandpa' and 'Ranger'

Oscars Lowdown 2014: Best Makeup and Hairstyling - 'Dallas' squares off with 'Grandpa' and 'Ranger'

When it doubt, pick the one nominated for Best Picture

In the lead-up to the 86th annual Academy Awards on March 2, HitFix will be bringing you the lowdown on all 24 Oscar categories with multiple entries each day. Take a few notes and bone up on the competition as we give you the edge in your office Oscar pool!

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Aaron Paul on the grieving process over the end of 'Breaking Bad'

Aaron Paul on the grieving process over the end of 'Breaking Bad'

How would you feel after wrapping up something that special?

Aaron Paul is in an enviable position for any actor. He's just wrapped up a major artistic accomplishment with the conclusion of "Breaking Bad," and now he's got room to choose what it is he wants to do next, and how he wants to further define himself. No matter what he does, Jesse Pinkman will always be one of the key things we know him for, and as defining roles go, that's a winner.

By now, it's clear that Paul is particularly gifted at playing a sort of weepy rage. He does this sort of shaky fury better than anyone working right now, and the writers of "Breaking Bad" took full advantage of that over the years. Part of the reason that show was so good is because they really understood the strengths of their cast and how to play to them.

In "Need For Speed," there are a few key scenes where that weepy rage comes into play, and in those moments, it's hard not to see the shadow of Jesse Pinkman.

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<p>Oscar Isaac in &quot;Inside Llewyn Davis.&quot;</p>

Oscar Isaac in "Inside Llewyn Davis."

Credit: CBS Films

International Cinephile Society names 'Inside Llewyn Davis' the year's best

Runner-up 'Blue is the Warmest Color' nabs wins for its two stars

It may have been largely shut out of the Academy Awards, but the Coen Brothers' "Inside Llewyn Davis" got at least one more Best Picture honor to round out its awards season, as the International Cinephile Society today named it the best of 2013. The group of over 80 film journalists, academics and industry professionals -- of which yours truly is a member -- also handed the film wins for Best Original Screenplay, Best Ensemble and Best Actor for Oscar Isaac, who tied with "The Wolf of Wall Street" star Leonardo DiCaprio.

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<p>U2 performs &quot;Ordinary Love&quot; on &quot;The&nbsp;Tonight Show&quot;&nbsp;as Will Smith and Jimmy Fallon look on.</p>

U2 performs "Ordinary Love" on "The Tonight Show" as Will Smith and Jimmy Fallon look on.

Credit: NBC

Off the Carpet: A most competitive, campaign-heavy season heads into the final turn

Nominees are all over the place as it looks to be a photo finish

It's almost over. Voting for the 86th annual Academy Awards ends tomorrow at 5pm PT. Most ballots have already been turned in, of course, and many were probably coming in early, as paper ballots somehow again hit mailboxes a week ahead of the official opening of online polls on Feb. 14. What will one of the most competitive seasons on record have to show for itself on Sunday night?

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Oscars Lowdown 2014: Best Film Editing - 'Captain Phillips' looks to sink 'Gravity'

Oscars Lowdown 2014: Best Film Editing - 'Captain Phillips' looks to sink 'Gravity'

How indicative is this category of the Best Picture standings?

In the lead-up to the 86th annual Academy Awards on March 2, HitFix will be bringing you the lowdown on all 24 Oscar categories with multiple entries each day. Take a few notes and bone up on the competition as we give you the edge in your office Oscar pool!

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