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 Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, unless otherwise noted. twitter | facebook | pinterest | tumblr | letterboxd


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Yes No Maybe So - Big Eyes

"The trailer won me over with two phrases:
1) "Lady art doesn't sell".
2) "I've been lying to my daughter".
- Adri

"A Tim Burton movie with the title Big Eyes that features neither Ricci, Ryder, Keaton nor Bonham Carter just doesn't seem right..." -Paul



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Entries in vampires (52)


True Blood: "Me and the Devil" & "I Wish I Was the Moon"

So get this. I offered up True Blood reviewing duties to the entire Team TFE last week when I was out of town and noone bit. What's up with that? No fangbangers in this house? Which means we've got two episodes to chat up today. Ratings for True Blood are strong this season and deservedly so. We're only halfway in but -- at this point -- it's much stronger than Season 3. It also isn't as repetitive as Season 2. We definitely approve thus far.

"Drink now."

4.5 "Me and the Devil"
Here we have a perfectly titled episode as everyone is battling their personal demons (Tara and Eric specifically) or actual demons as the case might be (Arlene & Terry who hold an exorcism of sorts in their house, still worrying about their spooky baby).

This is also another terrific rangey episode, with fast pacing, surprises and character bits. It kicks off with a violent family squabble (Tommy vs. his parents), moves expertly through tense comedy including the aforementioned exorcism, Bill glamouring his latest fling to "scream" and run whenever she sees him, and Lafayette's post Pam-cursing reaction to Marnie's 'who? me?' act.

That's some catchy shit for your headstone!"

Despite the abundance of actual plot there's graceful tightening of story threads as Sookie's finally braids to Marnie's when the women meet under the false pretenses of a reading. It doesn't turn out how Sookie or Marnie OR the audience expect.

Best Sookie Moment

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True Blood 4.3 "If You Love Me..."

Another Monday, another day spent thinking about last night's True Blood eppy. My favorite B story thread this season is definitely Arlene's devil baby so we must begin with my single favorite shot in the episode. The little monster slobbering all over Jessica's Capital C Creepy family heirloom doll.

He's so cute. Don't you just want to procure victims for him and grind them up into mushy baby food?

"If You Love Me, Why Am I Dyin'?" is a solid episode but can't help but feel like a smidgeon of a comedown after last week's instant classic in which Eric was robbed of his memories by the new witch coven led by Marnie (Fiona Shaw). This week's episode provided several fun moments and some promising future-implications but the plot mostly was little beats in which characters were trying to decide how to deal with the major events of the previous episode: where should Sooki hide Eric? is Tara getting sucked back in for good? will Lafayette's fear of Eric continue to get everyone in trouble? who is Pam going to eat if she gets too angry? exactly what is Marnie channeling?

Cheers: True Blood is giving both Lafayette and Tara more subtle emotions to play this season.

The major B story his season appears to be Jason's stud captivity in that redneck nightmare village (they mean to use him to sire new werepups). Someone rescue him!

Click to read more ...


I Vant To Link Your Blooooog

Frankly My Dear what's behind the Dreamworks Paramount animation split? It is all the panda's fault?
Playbill God help us all. Suri Cruise is making her first movie appearance in the musical Rock of Ages (2012). 
Daily Beast Were Waiting For Guffman's Corky St. Clair and Marcus Bachmann "Separated at Birth". oh lol, good hearty life-affirming lol. 

Cinema Blend OMG first images from Amy Heckerling's Vamps with Alicia Silverstone, Krysten Ritter and Sigourney Weaver, though no one has fangs! Remember when we thought that movie might get Michelle Pfeiffer? Sigh. Good times. So glad SigWeavie got it if we couldn't have La Pfeiff. Speaking of vampires, if you haven't checked out the latest True Blood episode review, please do.

Old Hollywood Notable moments in pre code history: The Sign of the Cross
IndieWire wonders if James Marsh (Project Nim) is the new Werner Herzog, equally at home in documentary and narrative worlds.
Towleroad P.S. I really liked that film, the Nim documentary (and more links if you just can't get enough.)

Finally... thanks to Super Punch for pointing out this old proposal for a Batgirl costume (in the Alicia Silverstone days). The illustrator Miles Teves was proud of this.

I regret that my idea of the cut-out Bat symbol window on the chest, showing a little skin and cleavage, didn't survive into the final suit. I thought it was kind of clever, and added just the right amount of wholesome flirtiness to the character.

But he knew it wouldn't work for Silverstone's proportions. More at his website.


True Blood 4.2 "You Smell Like Dinner"

Last week on True Blood I bemoaned the scattershot expository-heavy nature of the season 4 premiere but Holy Recovery. This show must have taken a hit of "V" last week because it came on supernaturally strong in the second episode of the season. If they keep this up we could be looking at a peak season. The show managed to pull at least a third of its characters (can we hope for two thirds?) back into a central plot (the emergence of a powerful new witch coven) in organic ways. It's the kind of braided multi-strand narrative that the best television series thrive on and which newly fanatical Game of Thrones watchers are going to eventually realize will never ever happen again on their new favorite show ever -- unless the production team ditches the source material for original stories -- but let's not get sidetracked!

What were those vamp whores up to this week?

'You want to call me that again?'

"You Smell Like Dinner" covers as much recap ground in its first half as "She's Not There" did in its entire hour while actually advancing the story. Jason is being held captive by his were-panther community and we learn why. The vampires at Fangtasia are still beset by Right Wing Christian groups -- Pam gets a particularly choice zinger in before hot-headed Hoyt gets a pumelling. Sam's shapeshifter friends become more interesting, particularly Luna. Eric continues his takeover of Sookie's house and life. He calls her "saucy" which is an impressively perfect word choice on behalf of the screenwriters given that it's 100% accurate, a bit old fashioned (he's hundreds of years old) and English isn't his native tongue.

Click to read more ...


TV @ the Movies: "Hoosiers" vs. "The Notebook"

I know that MTV's Teen Wolf is based on an 80s movie but it's not set in the 1980s so what to make of the bizarre opening scene of its latest episode "The Tell" in which Jackson (Colton Haynes) and Lydia (Holland Roden) visit that nostalgia-inducing endangered species, The Video Store, and have the following  ½ "80s" argument... 

Jackson: "Hoosiers" is not only the best basketball movie ever it is the best sports movie ever made. 
Lydia: No.
Jackson: It's got Gene Hackman and Dennis Hopper!
Lydia: No.
Jackson: Lydia, I swear to God you're going to like it.
Lydia: No.

[cut to: Jackson, defeated, inside the store]

Jackson: Can somebody help me find "The Notebook"? 

Haha. So, maybe this was intended it as a Men are from Mars / Women are from Venus argument but do today's teenagers (non film-fanatic variety... not you reading, obvs)  even know who Dennis Hopper and Gene Hackman are? It seems like this argument was between a 30something man and a teen girl. Or maybe Hoosiers mania still lives on in high school boys? I'm not a sports person or a high school boy so I cannot speak from authority.

Once inside the store, there are a ton of movies on view but none of them seem intentionally placed there for the camera. Lazy set dressers (kidding!). For instance, there's telltale signs of a dead body (a foot!) peaking out from behind the I Am Love row. But I highly doubt the director's were like "ooh, someone dies in that Tilda Swinton / Italian melodrama that won Best Pic at the Film Bitch Awards, so let's put the body there!".

This one on the other hand is 100% intentional.

Turns out there's an evil werewolf in the store and Jackson ends up hiding right next to a copy of Let The Right One In, the only movie with its own closeup. "The Tell" that it's intentional: It's out of sequence with the other movies sitting next to it, which begin with "S". Video stores may be on the verge of extinction but surely they still alphabetize.



True Blood 4.1: "She's Not There" 

Bill still makes her red eyed and weepyLet the Season 4 premiere of HBO's hit series True Blood be a lesson to all future showrunners. This is what happens when your show has introduced non-integrated plotlines for each and every member of a huge ensemble cast. This is what happens when you try a time jump so popular post Battlestar Galactica and don't trust the audience to just reconfigure the pieces on their own.  This is what happens when you back yourself into storylines that maybe weren't good ideas to begin with. I speak of Jason Stackhouse becoming the paterfamilia (of sorts) for a whole den of barely human hilbillies and a certain reveal about our heroine. To quote Sookie (Anna Paquin) herself with the same annoyed/surprised/this-is-stupid inflection from the Season 3 climax...

I'm a fairy?

And what is it that's happened, exactly?

The show's premiere episode "She's Not There" proved to be a random disjointed mess, forced to spend the entire hour on reintroductions to every character since we've missed a whole year of their lives (as has Sookie). I can't speak for television ratings but if True Blood hadn't already peaked in terms of the number of fangbangers gathered for each episode, this premiere had garlic all over it. Wouldn't it automatically repel new viewers?


"She's Not There" kicks off with a weirdly dull and anachronistic (for this show) opening. Sookie is trapped (though she doesn't yet know it) in an alternate fairy dimension which looks like a gaudy Maxfield Parrish knock-off painting with no-budget set dressing. Sookie doesn't eat the glowing fruit which turns out to be a good idea -- the side effects are both nasty and uglifying.

Click to read more ...


True Blood in Five Minutes

When I polled y'all about whether or not we should review True Blood Season 4 as it airs, and though the response was tepid in terms of button clicking it was "yay" in terms of coverage so we'll try it out. If response is good we'll keep going. If not, we dump. Every other film site seems to cover more and more TV [TANGENT: the worlds continue to converge though not, I should add, as they should: put the franchises on TV where no beginnings, middle and ends are appropriate and not in the cinema where you're supposed to tell a full story, damnit! [/TANGENT] and we gotta keep up or lose market share.

So before Season 4 begins next week, a quick recap of the first three seasons courtesy of HBO

For those who care about existing predispositions my favorite human is Jason (Ryan Kwanten being the show's acting MVP... and the least likely to ever be nominated for it), my favorite vampire is Pam (Kristin Bauer), my favorite eye candy is Eric (Alexander Skarsgård) and my favorite CGI creation is Joe Manganiello (as "Alcides) who cannot possibly be a real human actor considering that superhero body that makes Ryan Reynolds look like a gym slacker. I go back and forth on the quality of virtually everyone and everything in this show but I find it addictive and admire its looney commitment to all caps acting and total trashiness.


Links: Dracula, Werewolf, Alien, Bridesmaid

My New Plaid Pants Oooooh Asia Argento and Thomas Kretschmann to star in Dario Argento's Dracula 3D.
Blastr the creator of MTV's new series Teen Wolf claims it's inspired by Spider-Man and Buffy. Ugh. I hate that "it's just like everything else" pitch approach to advertising but in this case it worked on me as Spidey and Buffy are two of my very favorite things. Damn you, man.
Ultra Culture "a review of Bridesmaids that's mostly just a rant about marketing."
Deviant Art
Princess Leia drawn in  Alphonse Mucha style. Love it.

Last Exit to Nowhere look at this amazing fan photo to your right, in homage to Aliens.

Off Cinema
Socialite Life Glee's Naya Rivera got a record deal.
Boy Culture Do you remember these 70s and 80s tv shows? I had totally forgotten about most of these. A few I do remember vividly (It's a Living, Square Pegs)
La Daily Musto The Normal Heart stars get age-shaving portraits at Sardis. Ellen Barkin thinks she looks like ScarJo
After Elton chooses the 39 Hottest Guys in New York Theater. Thankfully there's something for everyone.
Hark a Vagrant "Brown Recluse Spider-Man" I lol'ed and lol'ed at this webcomic. Please to enjoy.