Could 2013 provide the world with the best trio, er, quartet of awards show hosts ever? "Family Guy" and "Ted" wunderkind Seth McFarlane is on board for the grand daddy, the Oscars; "SNL" vets and BFF's Amy Poehler and Tina Fey are making NBC and the Golden Globes must see TV again; and now Film Independent has announced that the usually funny and creative Andy Samberg will top line the 2013 Independent Spirit Awards. It's signalling a new generation of emcees (for the moment) and at worst should pique casual award show viewers interest. Granted, the Spirits are broadcast at 10 PM on a Saturday night on low rated IFC, but for those of us in the audience it should be fun.
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After releasing two albums of raw and ready rock since September, the party’s over, or at least on its last legs, on “Tre!,” the third in Green Day’s trilogy, out today.
The exhilaration on “Uno!,” released in September, and “Dos!,” out last month, has been replaced with a certain weariness, but the dozen tunes here still have plenty of bite. Performed at a much slower, less hyper speed than the songs on the first two sets, “Tre!” provides some food for thought for those who have stayed too long too often, while also serving an an excellent showcase for Billie Joe Armstrong’s often plaintive vocals.
Opening with country-tinged waltz “Brutal Love,” most of the songs on “Tre!” come with a tinge of regret whether it’s over a lost love on the horn-laced “Missing You” or a lost childhood (at any age) on the pulsing “X-Kid.”
The band’s familiar quick-tempo-ed bounce returns on the power poppy “Sex, Drugs and Violence,” which is doubly likable for the line: “Well, I don’t want to be an imbecile, but Jesus made me that way.”
The most interesting cut is the six-minute “Dirty Rotten Bastards,” which is about four songs in one. The tune, which would have sounded right at home on “21st Century Breakdown,” opens with a sing-songy militant bounce before progressing to some serious guitar shredding bolstered by Tre Cool’s relentless drumming, then shifting into a melodic mid-tempo lament to “all God’s losers,” before majestically bending into a slower section.
The album closes with a piano ballad, “The Forgotten,” which sounds like Green Day crossed with Oasis, and will be familiar with "Twight" fans for its inclusion on the soundtrack for "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2." Green Day doesn't do happy particularly well, but they've got pissed off, bittersweet, and disenchanted down.
The three albums work as a piece, but also stand confidently on their own individually. Of the three, “Tre” will appeal to Green Day fans who like their music a little more contemplative than mindless.
That is, of course, the exact word that Warner Bros. wants to hear in response to their new trailer for "Man Of Steel," and while I guess I thought we'd be seeing more action, what with Zack Snyder describing the trailer as "crazy" a few weeks ago.
What we see here instead explains a lot about the approach that the film is taking, and it uses much of the footage we saw at last year's Comic-Con, but with new footage as well. There's an early beat where we see Clark fleeing from a classroom, upset, and Ma Kent (Diane Lane) has to talk him down, asking him to focus on her voice like it's an island. Is this where he first gets his super-hearing and he is suddenly overwhelmed by voices around the world? We also see that he is haunted by an early incident in his life where he saves a bus full of kids from drowning, and that he seems to be running from who he is.
Not that this is something to be particularly proud of, but the Broadcast Film Critics Association has done its annual duty of distilling the Oscar race to what we think it is now (now, NOW!). There's nothing of passionate note in its overall picks, nothing of unique flavor. But as I have explained in the past, that's the result of a vaster group than these other, smaller 20- and 30-member critics groups. A bigger spread tends to yield consensus and, well, boring choices across the board.
The Academy can sometimes offer more refined selections throughout its many categories, focused on the work of peers, knowledgeable in it, even. But here you'll find what seems like auto-pilot selections, some of them even traceable to various publicity campaigns around this or that contender (nice work in the Best Song category, "Act of Valor" pushers). I don't claim them, though I certainly voted in them (full disclosure: I am a member). I don't see my identity here. Indeed, I don't see much of an identity at all.
As we wait for the BFCA news to drop, the St. Louis Gateway Film Critics Association has tossed its hat into the ring with a list of nominations as well. It's nice to see that Quentin Tarantino's "Django Unchained" registered so well, landing eight nominations. Wes Anderson's "Moonrise Kingdom" was also a favorite from the group, as well as fellow indie "Beasts of the Southern Wild." Check out the full list below and, well, you know -- The Circuit.
I'm the first to admit that I don't tend to take great interest in press releases announcing the umpteenth honorary award winner of the season -- while frequently deserved and hard-earned, such honors can seem like unspecific garnish beside their tangier competitive counterparts.
Still, having now served for two years on the awards committee of the London Film Critics' Circle, I'm well aware of the extensive consultation and organization that goes into such seemingly simple awards. As we tried to decide on a recipient for next year's Dilys Powell Award -- recognizing outstanding contribution to British cinema -- a lengthy list of candidates was considered and debated over several meetings and countless emails, until one outstanding name was roundly agreed upon: Helena Bonham Carter.
The Detroit Film Critics Society has announced its list of nominees, and they refreshingly go their own way in a number of areas. "Silver Linings Playbook" led the way with seven nominations and Sarah Polley's "Take This Waltz" was a favorite, too. Other unique picks include Bill Murray in the Best Actor line-up for "Hyde Park on Hudson" and Greta Gerwig in Best Actress for "Damsels in Distress." Check out the full list below and remember to keep track of the season via The Circuit.
I somehow missed this when it appeared a few day ago, but A.O. Scott's essay on the year in movie heroines is essential reading. While noting the commercial and/or critical success of female-powered narratives ranging from "The Hunger Games" to "Brave" to "Beasts of the Southern Wild" to "Pitch Perfect" -- while noting the potential for "Zero Dark Thirty" to rule an otherwise male-dominated Oscar slate -- he's not so naive or patronising as to label 2012 any kind of Year of the Woman. Still, he does sense a recent uptick in studios' consideration of the intelligent female audience. "It should not, after all, be a big deal that movies like 'Bridesmaids' or 'The Hunger Games' exist," he writes, "perhaps because it should have been a bigger deal when such movies didn’t." [New York Times]
A quick review of last night's "How I Met Your Mother" coming up just as soon as I dress like a Duluth streetwalker...
A few things happen in this episode on "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills," many of them painfully mundane. Kyle gives her terror-behind-the-wheel Alexia a new Mercedes. Ken gets his hip replaced. Lisa reprimands one of her employees. Paul tries to barbecue and shows off his unfortunate back hair. None of this matters, because the focus of this episode is THE FIGHT. Yes, on a show that spews out verbal smackdowns the way Duggars pop out babies, this battle royale might actually be memorable past next week. In fact, I think it continues into next week, as that's the impression we get from the promo, and (thanks to the long, spidery reach of the Internet) it might have been the basis for a cease-and-desist letter against Brandi Glanville filed by Adrienne Maloof. So, whatever kickstarted this feud must have been horrible, right? There's no way of knowing, simply because Bravo didn't air it.
The Bad Robot offices occupy a large building in Santa Monica that you would never notice just driving by. I missed it the first time around the block, and had to circle back before I was able to hand off my car to the waiting valet. I was afraid I'd missed the start of today's "Star Trek Into Darkness" event, but ended up making it in just enough time to get my green wristband, join my group, and start the tour of the building, designed to give us a look inside one of next year's most anticipated sequels.
To be clear, there was one point in the day where we saw something we had to promise not to disclose. I wouldn't say it radically changed anything I'm going to share with you, but instead simply served to amp up my own enthusiasm because it was really, really, yes, I'm going to say it three whole times, REALLY cool.
If you're curious about the identity of the character played by Benedict Cumberbatch, Paramount took care of that earlier today, and they're not lying to you. They released an image of Zachary Quinto as Spock, Cumberbatch in the cell that held Loki and Silva, and Chris Pine as Captain James T. Motherscratchin' Kirk, and in the caption, they named him as "John Harrison."