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'Idol' confirms Harry Connick Jr. and J.Lo as judges, Randy Jackson as mentor


"Idol" confirms Harry Connick Jr. and J.Lo as judges, Randy Jackson as mentor

Fox is hailing the Season 13 cast as its "Dream Team."


LeBron James developing a comedy for Starz
The NBA superstar is teaming with Mike O'Malley on "Survivor's Remorse," which follows two cousins who find success after making it out of Philly's toughest neighborhood.


Katie Couric gets engaged
Couric is set to wed her boyfriend of two years, banker John Molner.

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Listen to M.I.A.'s poppy 'Come Walk With Me' in full

Listen to M.I.A.'s poppy 'Come Walk With Me' in full

New album, 'Matangi,' comes out Nov. 5

Last spring, a snippet of M.I.A.’s new single, “Come Walk With Me” leaked, but the teaser last week revealed a reworked tune and the full version, released today, turns out to be a pop song that morphs into a psychedelic banger back to pop song and back to banger again.  In other words, it’s the perfect tune to wake you up and get you ready for the short work week after the three-day holiday.

It’s a deceptively sweet song: things seem all rosy as she sings “Can I be your best friend? Can I make it to the end,” until she innocently throws in, “It’s cool, it’s takes two, so I’m gonna still fu** with you.” She also threatens that "there are a thousand ways to track you down."  Stalk much? You can’t turn your back on this one for a minute.

“Come Walk With Me” is from “Matangi,” which will come out Nov. 5 (the same day as Eminem’s “MMLP2”), and is a reference to M.I.A.’s birth name, Mathangi, and the Hindu goddess of music.  As you may recall, “Matangi” has been pushed back a few times this year because, of all things, M.I.A. claimed that Interscope found it too “positive” and wanted her to make it darker.  I guess that’s where the “f*ck with you" comes in.

M.I.A. previously released "Bring The Noize" from "Matangi." 


 

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<p>Scarlett Johansson in &quot;Under the Skin.&quot;</p>

Scarlett Johansson in "Under the Skin."

Credit: StudioCanal

First glimpse of Scarlett Johansson in the stunning 'Under the Skin'

Jonathan Glazer's ultra-minimalist sci-fi officially premieres in Venice tonight

VENICE - I want to sit with Jonathan Glazer's "Under the Skin" for a while longer before writing about it at length: the film's hard surfaces are so immaculate, belying the powerful, frayed-nerve story of multiple forms of bodily invasion that nestles inside, that I may take in a second screening at Venice before trying to crack them. This much is immediately apparent: it's the riskiest, most extravagantly sensual and image-fuelled film in Competition at Venice. Naturally, a handful of dolts booed it at this morning's press screening. What else is new?

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<p>Errol Morris and Werner Herzog at the 40th annual Telluride Film&nbsp;Festival</p>

Errol Morris and Werner Herzog at the 40th annual Telluride Film Festival

Credit: Tom Quinn

Telluride: Wrapping up the 40th annual fest

The Academy celebrated the festival's anniversary and the Oscar season revved its engines

TELLURIDE, Colo. - The 40th annual Telluride Film Festival has come to a close, unofficially launching the Oscar season and wrapping up another wonderfully curated program that continues to be one of my most anticipated journeys each year.

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<p>Album art for Neko Case's latest</p>

Album art for Neko Case's latest

Credit: Anti Records

Album Review: Neko Case's 'The Worse Things Get... ' looks at the dark side

Set soars despite Neko's heartfelt heaviness

Neko Case’s follow-up to “Middle  Cyclone,” finds her in a far more personal mood. On that 2009 album, she explored forces of nature. On “The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You,”  Case tackles something much harder to wrangle: her own life.

Case wrote and recorded “The Worse Things Get”  during a time of great turmoil: her grandmother, whom she was close to, and both her parents, whom she was not, died and she plunged into a depression. Much of the tunes carry a sense of tumult, a near fruitless attempt at making sense amid the chaos. Buoyed by her crystalline vocals, the songs transcend the maudlin to become something much more interesting: a look at the life force that surges through us even as we may feel we’re getting pulled under. Or, as she confesses in “Where Did I Leave That Fire, “I wanted to badly not to be me.”

The album’s most arresting track is “Nearly Midnight, Honolulu,” an a capella song that recounts Case seeing a mother yell at her child at a bus stop. Case not only wants to tell the child that she loves him/her (the child’s gender is never revealed), but that she witnessed the horror as the child will remember it, it really happened, and to never lose his/her voice. Given Case’s own very troubled relationship with her parents, it’s easy to imagine that she’s wishing someone had done that for her. (Parents come up again in opening track “Wild Creatures,” as she laments “There’s no mother’s hands to quiet me.”)

There’s an aloneness, and in many ways, a sense of isolation,  that pervades the album, making the lone cover here, Nico’s “Afraid,” a perfect fit. Case’s take on the tune is spare and haunting. “You’re beautiful and you’re alone,” Case sings as if it’s a haunting curse, as she finds herself in her 40s and single and childless.

Despite its “every woman is an island” feel, “The Worse Things Get” is far from a downer of a set (well, at least not totally). First single “Man,” featuring M. Ward is a gender bending propulsive rocker about Case being a woman in a man’s world. Gender roles come up again in “Night Still Comes,” as she asks “Did you poison my food? Is it because I’m a girl? if I puked up some sonnets would me a ‘miracle?,” and on “I’m From Nowhere.”

In addition to M. Ward, Case is joined by a phalanx of like-minded, indie-rock oriented compatriots, including her New Pornographers band mate A.C. Newman, Howe Gelb, members of My Morning Jacket, Los Lobos and Visqueen.

There’s a sense that the darkness is lifting on closing track, “Ragtime” (Case has said that ragtime was the only music that pulled her out of the abyss during her depression). It’s a shaky ground she finds herself on as “The Worse Things Get” comes to its conclusion, but there is the feeling that rock bottom is in her rear view mirror.

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<p>Idris Elba in &quot;Luther.&quot;</p>

Idris Elba in "Luther."

Credit: BBC

Review: Idris Elba continues to rise above BBC America's 'Luther'

The former Stringer Bell is a blast as a damaged British cop, but the show's still a mess

It's such a pleasure to watch Idris Elba periodically return to television as British cop John Luther that it can be easy to ignore for a moment what a mess "Luther" the show is around him.

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'Homeland's' Season 3 premiere leaks on the internet


"Homeland's" Season 3 premiere leaks on the internet
An unfinished version surfaced on BitTorrent sites over the weekend, one month before its Sept. 29 air date.


Comedy Central's James Franco roast lacked desperation
Most of the comedians were just too nice to Franco, says Sonia Saraiya, who adds: "This particular generation of comedians feels a little too polished for the post-empire decadence of a roast. There isn't that same bloody minded savagery, borne of whatever comedians have to go through to become the slightly brittle funny people they are. There isn't desperation." PLUS: Jeff Ross was brilliant.


Dianna Agron wasn't invited to "Glee's" Cory Monteith tribute episode
In fact, Agron isn't sure she'll be back this season.


Dean Norris deconstructs this week's "Breaking Bad"
"What else is Hank going to do?" he says of this week's developments. PLUS: Everyone had a case of the stupids this week, writer/director of this week's episode calls it "one of the hardest episodes to break in the history of the show," this episode felt too disjointed, it was a slow and steady burn, and "Rabid Dog" was elegantly structured.


Fox orders "Dream Date" from Ryan Seacrest
The dating competition follows a group of women looking for love.


"Downton Abbey" Season 4 trailer debuts

"You have a straightforward choice," says Maggie Smith's Violet Crawley. "You must choose either death or life."


"Sesame Street" has gotten more sophisticated
In recent years, a show devoted to teaching 3- to 5-year-olds about numbers and letters have evolved into teaching about nature, science, math and engineering concepts. But is this sophisticated approach working?


Police return 15 pounds of weed to "Weed Country" star
Discovery Channel's medical marijuana dispensary owner Matthew Shotwell had his marijuana seized last year, but charges were later dropped.


CBS vs. Time Warner dispute ends

Which side ultimately caved?


Alec Baldwin pens a tribute to Julie Harris

Baldwin worked with Harris on "Knots Landing."


See "Once Upon a Time's" Tinkerbell
Played by Rose McIver, Peter Pan's sidekick is "glamorous."


David Frost: An appreciation
The British host who famously grilled Richard Nixon was a TV natural.


Seth Meyers weds his longtime girlfriend

Lorne Michaels and Amy Poehler were among the guests as Meyers' Martha's Vineyard wedding to Alexi Ashe.

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<p>Sandra Bullock in &quot;Gravity.&quot;</p>

Sandra Bullock in "Gravity."

Credit: Warner Bros.

Telluride Roundup: 'Prisoners,' 'Palo Alto,' 'Gravity'

Looking back at some of the major films at Telluride's 40th

TELLURIDE, Colo. - The 2013 Telluride Film Festival has come to a close and, overall, the quality of the slate was befitting the event's 40th anniversary. Granted, you might have expected more celebratory moments, but Telluride has always been about the movies first. Parties? Special ceremonies?  Eh, they'll stick with the annual Thursday "feed" and Labor Day picnic thank you very much.

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<p>Yes, Zac, we are talking to you.</p>

Yes, Zac, we are talking to you.

Credit: Universal Pictures

Rogen and Efron make a strong impression in first filthy funny trailer for 'Neighbors'

This one's pulling no punches even in the first first peek

It wasn't that long ago that I drove to an unassuming street just off the 10 freeway in Los Angeles and followed the directions to the two houses being used for what was still at that point being called "Townies."

By this point, I feel comfortable on a set that's run by Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, or Nicholas Stoller, and when you throw all three of them into the mix, you've got my attention. I ended up talking to Stoller, Goldberg, and Rogen, as well as screenwriters Andrew J. Cohen and Brendan O'Brien, and it was apparent that they all had one clear goal in mind: make a stunningly dirty and wildly funny film.

If you're unfamiliar with the film, it deals with Mac (Rogen) and Kelly (Rose Byrne), a young couple who have just gone through two of the most stressful experiences that you can face in normal daily life. They just had a baby, and they just bought a house. Piling those one on top of the other means that they're stretched about as thin as they can be, and then within days of them closing the deal on their house, they get new neighbors, and it turns out to be a fraternity, run by Teddy (Zac Efron), Scoonie (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) and Pete (Dave Franco).

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<p>Christoph Waltz in &quot;The Zero Theorem.&quot;</p>

Christoph Waltz in "The Zero Theorem."

Credit: Voltage Pictures

Review: Terry Gilliam's 'The Zero Theorem' doesn't add up to much

Headache-inducing sci-fi's futurism is so dated, it's practically a period piece

VENICE - Playing an online shrink, Tilda Swinton raps for about 30 seconds at the midpoint of "The Zero Theorem" -- a stiff, Scots-accented Fresh Prince breakdown performed from under a broom-like hairpiece. It doesn't advance the story in any way, but then, nothing here does; her screen is switched off and the rap passes without comment, like a slippery fart in an elevator; the onscreen witnesses look sheepish to have heard it at all.

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<p>J.C.&nbsp;Chandor (right) and Robert Redford on the set of &quot;All is&nbsp;Lost&quot;</p>

J.C. Chandor (right) and Robert Redford on the set of "All is Lost"

Credit: Roadside Attractions

Telluride: J.C. Chandor on the multiple metaphors of 'All is Lost'

Is it an abstraction about the financial crisis? Maybe...

TELLURIDE, Colo. - Like any artist, J.C. Chandor isn't interested in tying his work down with one thematic takeaway. Indeed, his latest film, "All is Lost," lives in the abstract and can service any number of perspectives on it. But for a guy who launched his career with the financial crisis indie "Margin Call," one can't help but wonder if this film, about a man stranded at sea as things go from bad to worse, isn't in some way a metaphor for market collapse and financial ruin as seen over the last five years.

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<p>&quot;Gravity,&quot;&nbsp;&quot;12 Years a Slave&quot;&nbsp;and &quot;Labor Day&quot; hope to keep the fire going through the fall.</p>

"Gravity," "12 Years a Slave" and "Labor Day" hope to keep the fire going through the fall.

Credit: Warner Bros./Fox Searchlight/Paramount

Off the Carpet: Telluride launches the season from 'Gravity' to '12 Years a Slave'

Will films that hit be able to keep the high going through the circuit?

The Telluride Film Festival wraps up today and with that, the upcoming awards season has finally taken a little shape. We have a long way to go, of course, and no one should be calling the race from this far out, but we certainly know a few things.

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