The sun is out and the temperature's rising. What better way to spend your time than with a good book? This month I have four film-themed books worth checking out! The Lost Detective: Becoming Dashiell Hammett by Nathan Ward Best known as the author of The Maltese Falcon and The Thin Man, author Dashiell Hammett created detectives evoking the real world, a world both shadowy and connected to Hammett himself. Nathan Ward's The Lost Detective gives audiences a glimpse at Hammett through the prose he work. As a former operative for the Pinkerton Detective Agency, Hammett's first novels saw him
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What's worth reading this month
"I’m worried that I won’t get everything I need answered by the end of the season." - Kim
In which Kim and Shawn find themselves at the halfway point. Kim: So, we’re halfway through this very short season of Preacher and I’m actually going to criticize it. Not because I don’t absolutely love it, because I do. I’m going to bitch for a minute that there is a lot of time taken up by things that will make absolute zero sense to you if you don’t read the comics or use Google. I refuse to do either, because I don’t want to ruin the show. There are people out there who insist that things are better if you
"It all comes together so seamlessly, to offer one surprise after another, keeping this show fresh and interesting." - Kim
In which Shawn and Kim discuss Preacher continuing to be accessible and not predictable. Shawn: This series started at 100 mph. And now at episode four I feel like it's slowing down with each episode. We started driving crazy through a corn field at seemingly faster than reality allows and airplanes falling out of the sky. This week we slowly fell into a hole and built an episode around pooping and peeing and raffling off a TV. I'm still in love with this show more than any other on the air right now. I have a few thoughts about what
"It all felt different this week and I can't put my finger on the problem." - Shawn
In which Kim and Shawn keep waiting for the next big thing. Kim: I have to tell you, I’m more in love with this show every single time I watch it. I also have to tell you that I’m having a hard time saying anything new or original about it. Dominic Cooper - still hot Ruth Negga - still gorgeous So, what else does one say about a show that seems to be doling out one or two clues at a time regarding what’s happening everywhere? I don’t feel like this gives me much to write about, but… I am
Stay gold, Preacher. You are off to a great start.
In which Kim and Shawn use the F-word to describe the series. Kim: The much anticipated second episode of Preacher has come and gone, and with it, all of my angst about shitty TV that just doesn’t do anything for me. It is June. I generally watch zero TV from now until Fall. However, I’m already pretty sucked in to Preacher and looking forward to Sunday’s premiere of Ride on Norman Reedus. What was that? Oh, it’s not “on Norman Reedus”, but with him, you say? Don’t crush my dreams. But this is about Preacher and not Norman’s arms, so
The set boasts 30 Blu-ray discs with every movie and TV show featuring the original crew, including the newly remastered Animated Series on Blu-ray for the first time ever!
Press release: Embark on a mission to the final frontier with the biggest, most comprehensive Star Trek collection ever offered when the Star Trek 50th Anniversary TV and Movie Collection is transported to Earth on September 6, 2016. Just in time to commemorate the September 8, 1966 airing of the very first Star Trek episode, this epic limited-edition gift set includes 30 Blu-ray Discs featuring all new disc art and every feature film and television show made with the original crew, plus a brand new, multi-part documentary with nearly two hours of new footage chronicling the franchise’s amazing 50-year journey.
What's worth reading in June?
From a romantic adaptation to the world of classic Hollywood, here's a trio of titles worth taking to the beach with you in June. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes In the interest of full disclosure, I entered into reading Jojo Moyes' incredibly popular novel with a heavy dose of trepidation. As a disabled person myself, I abhor reading stories that take disabled characters and use them as inspirational totems and that's what Me Before You is. Adapted and set for release in cinemas on June 3rd, the story follows Louisa "Lou" Clark (set to be played by Emilia Clarke)
"An amalgam of all of the crap rolled in to one last hurrah before getting a break." - Kim
In which Shawn and Kim welcome a merciful end to this half season. Shawn: We survived. I don't care about our group. It's you and I, T&A, that survived this torture of a season. I was so happy to have the cleansing power of Preacher before I sat down to watch the last episode of this half season, "Shiva". I felt such a relief at the end of that episode that I almost mentally erased the whole thing when I hit "delete" on the DVR. I've recalled a few things to finish this chapter of our reviews. Just a few.
An above average start to what looks like a fun series with people blowing up.
In which Kim and Shawn are introduced to the television world of Preacher. Kim: Here is the write-up everyone has/I have been waiting for. I’m more than a little bit excited to finally be able to write it. Start bold, Kim. Put your thoughts out there. Don’t hedge. Preacher is the TV show I have been waiting for since Sons of Anarchy ended. I was unable to watch it when it aired as it would have interfered with my daily routine of sleeping for just under seven consecutive hours every single day. So, I watched it on Monday and it
The first-ever outdoor IMAX premiere event will include appearances by the film’s cast and crew, and a live concert performance by the San Diego Symphony Orchestra.
Press release: Paramount Pictures, Skydance, Bad Robot and director Justin Lin today announced that the world premiere of Star Trek Beyond will play in the immersive IMAX format at Comic-Con International: San Diego, in partnership with the San Diego Symphony Orchestra and IMAX Corporation, on Wednesday, July 20, at the Embarcadero Marina Park South. The red carpet event at San Diego Comic-Con, which marks the first-ever open-air IMAX world premiere, will feature special appearances by Lin and the Star Trek Beyond filmmakers and cast, as well as a live concert performance of Academy Award-winning composer Michael Giacchino’s film score by
"I didn't get enough Nick to make me happy and I can't bring myself to even say it was a mediocre episode." - Shawn
In which Shawn and Kim almost like an episode and want to talk owls but largely just can't wait for Preacher. Shawn: The title of this episode has some religious significance that's related to the initial scene at the church in the past. The same way that beginning needed subtitles to make sense is kinda how I ended up feeling about the rest of the episode. I was initially ready to compliment the episode on finally making sense but the more I mulled it over I'm not sure that it doesn't need more explanation. So without further ado I'll try
"Can we have more Patsy Cline tunes in future episodes?" - Kim
In which Shawn and Kim agree on two things: They are counting down to Preacher and they love Patsy Cline. Shawn: I think all we need to do to start each of these reviews is just include the countdown to the first episode of Preacher. That commercial was the best 30 seconds of this episode. But instead I'll start to unpack what I saw or at least think I saw in-between yawns. 1.) STEAK-UMMS. In the most uncomfortable seduction move of the season, Connor made Alicia a cheap steak that I think spelled out the words "do you like me
Blood in the streets, Strand in the sheets.
In which Kim and Shawn look forward to Preacher. Kim: Yes, yes, yes. I tuned in for another week of this show. I don’t know why I’m still doing it. Notice it took a lot longer this time around to get my opinions down on paper (so to speak). Oh well, here goes nothing. This time-jumping shit has got to go. It was fairly ridiculous to start with the future, move to the past, then to present with a parallel story, to more past and Strand is gay (I told you) or at least pretending to be. I think I
What's worth reading in the month of May?
Our Gang: A Racial History of the Little Rascals by Julia Lee The cherubic innocence of Hal Roach's Our Gang series delighted children and adults throughout the nation in the early years of cinema. But as racial politics changed the adventures of Alfalfa and his friends were criticized for their past connections to racism. Author Julia Lee attempts to debunk the cries of Our Gang's fraught past by looking at the series from a racial angle. Blending individual episode analysis with the history of the series, Lee tells the tale of Roach's desire to make a series about real children
"I may have experienced some nervous energy during last night’s episode. It lasted all of 30 seconds." - Kim
In which crabs eat zombies eating crabs and most of the best things are the promos for upcoming shows. Shawn: When I saw the really awkward title of this episode, I should have thought that maybe there was something a little different here. And there was. Just a little. But the bar is so low that I need to examine if there was really actual entertainment happening here. 1.) THE LOST DEAD. I guess I was most excited about getting closure from all of those 30-second spots we watched during the last season of The Walking Dead. I was afraid
Does "All Fall Down" refer to all the sense in this show currently?
In which Kim and Shawn try to make sense of the episode. Kim: We’re only on the second episode of the second season and I am seriously not even sure I can continue supporting this show with my viewing. I was happy to see a Preacher commercial, even though it wasn’t an intriguing one. Just the fact that it’s coming in just over a month is more entertaining to me than this show. This episode made zero sense and I mean "zero." So, your boat driver tells you that as soon as it’s clear, you’re heading out again. What a
T&A are on the job trying to make sense of this season of FTWD.
In which Shawn and Kim head out on the a one-hour tour with our cast. Shawn: Is this just some backhanded way to get me to watch a show that I might bail on? Is it some morbid curiosity? 1.) PREVIOUSLY ON FTWD. Before that little montage at the beginning (and truthfully afterwards too), I remember these few things about the initial season. Kim Dickens is hot. There's a boat that not-Morgan led them to. Drug teen was annoying. After much teeth gnashing, some lady was killed. And the Army was going to bomb Los Angeles. This show had moved
"Sure am glad that’s not how I spent my last day on Earth." - Kim
In which Kim and Shawn wonder what could have been. Kim: I spent many anxiety-ridden weeks waiting for the season finale. Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) was coming. Someone was going to die. Tension was rampant. There were nights spent being irritated at the pace of the show, but hoping that it was leading somewhere incredible. I was ready to be wowed. I was ready to be devastated. As I sat to watch the 90-minute finale, I reminded myself that the only reason it was 90 minutes, was because AMC knew they’d make a killing by selling ad time. There wasn’t
What's worth reading for April?
Spring has sprung, so let's see what's worth putting on your bookshelves this month. Spinster: Making a Life of One's Own by Kate Bolick Kate Bolick's book is a mixed bag of personal memoir, feminist history, and biography, all of which makes for good, if patchy, reading. Bolick details the female fear of "spinsterhood," charting its applications throughout history and her own personal fears of being alone. When Bolick takes the time to focus on the actual issues regarding the spinster trope - including the rise of the cat or bag lady - the book takes on a fascinating feminist
Like the best episodes of the Original Series, the conflicts are believable, the stakes are high, yet there also are moments of humor.
Growing up in the ‘70s and early ‘80s, before VCRs became commonplace in households, we were limited to the whims of TV station programmers when it came to watching our favorite shows, unlike viewers today who have instant access and can even own copies of them. To revisit Star Trek at one’s leisure in those bygone days, the options were limited. James Blish adapted episodes into short-story collections, and industrious fans recorded shows off the TV onto cassette tapes, listening to them like a radio broadcast. Twelve episodes, selected from all three seasons, were given the photonovel treatment so fans
"What would an episode this season be if one of our team didn't get captured?" - Shawn
In which Shawn and Kim mostly just worry about what's going to happen next week. Shawn: I fear that we wouldn't enjoy the great episodes of the past few weeks (and essentially all of this season) if we didn't get clunkers like this one. The show still hasn't reached a perfect season and this is one that will keep it short of that this season. I will keep it short and I won't bring up Daryl because I know he's yours. 1. ) THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT. I don't know what it sounded like to you when Morgan and Rick were
The Hateful Eight is a pretty good film, but "pretty good" is well below Tarantino's usual standards.
Every Quentin Tarantino movie is an event, especially as he continues to threaten to retire eventually, and perhaps sooner rather than later. On top of that, The Hateful Eight is a massive Western, with a great cast and a score from Ennio Morricone. It was right up Tarantino's alley, and was worth getting excited about. Alas, it couldn't live up to that excitement, at least not entirely. The Hateful Eight is both expansive and intimate, depending on which portion of the movie we are talking about. Most of it takes place within a haberdashery during a blizzard, with our cast
"There was a lot happening in this episode, but not a lot happened." - Kim
In which Kim and Shawn have a few comments on dick biting and stroganoff and hurtle towards the finale. Kim: There was a lot happening in this episode, but not a lot happened. This one will be hard to write up because I was distracted by Daryl, as usual, looking all post-apocalyptic hot and trying to be a hard ass, but failing miserably. I’m going to keep my comments short and sweet because there are some things that I saw that truly bothered me and I’m not fully ready to commit them to writing at this time. Abraham has become
"I wish that there wasn't such a thing as the internet to ruin all of the tension in a show like this." - Kim
In which Shawn and Kim demonstrate they aren't always in the same boat. Shawn: I only have a few notes for you this week. 1.) PERFECT? My gaze didn't leave the screen at any point in the episode. None of those Carl moments that make me wander to cat videos or reach for the popcorn. I had even poured a perfectly wonderful Ballast Point Watermelon Dorado for the viewing that generally went untouched, except during commercials. I can't call it "perfect" because I think this show still has that episode in its arsenal. And truthfully there was some slow moments
"There was a weight to this episode that hasn't been consistent this season." - Shawn
In which Kim and Shawn muse on the Saviors and if Virginia is just for Lovers. Kim: Well, another week and another episode closer to the end of the season. First and foremost, why aren’t these seasons 22-plus episodes like network shows? It seems so unfair. My thoughts on the latest adventures of our gang will be short because I really felt like I was cheated out of so much this week. First, let me say, I was really glad to see so much of Carol. But. The opening. Ugh. It felt like I was going to see the Double
"We've got all of the makings of a Very Special Easter Edition of The Walking Dead." - Kim
In which Shawn & Kim discuss the extra dose of T&A this week and a bit of Jesus. Shawn: I was surprised in general that they tried to air an episode opposite the Oscars. Despite being a Top 5 rated show, it's like trying to go against the Super Bowl as far as ratings go. But now I see that they aired the least important episode of the past couple seasons. Anyone who missed this will quickly be caught up on the next "Previously on The Walking Dead". 1.) I'll throw the first Pun Grenade. The title gave me hope
What's worth reading this month.
I'm an avid book reader and it's because of this avidity that I can read freely under the guise of "working." Kristen's Book Club will help you find the perfect film-related - or should be filmed - book to spend time with each month. We'll also look at upcoming novels soon to be adapted for the big screen. In this inaugural column we'll explore Superman's origins, more from the star of Martin Scorsese's Goodfellas, and a Hollywood director receiving the biography treatment. Bending Steel by Alan J. Regalado One of the more analytical books available this month is Alan J.
"I didn't hate the episode I just felt like I had tuned into a special-guest-written episode." - Shawn
In which Shawn and Kim try to decipher how long it was between episodes and how you make a shopping list during the apocalypse. Kim: This was the strangest episode of The Walking Dead that I have ever seen. Let me start off by saying that I was pretty irritated by the incredible time-jump. How long has passed? A month or two? Why are people giving out grocery lists like, “Hey, if you think about it and can find me a bottle of wine and some jalapeno poppers, I’d be grateful”? How do you go from total chaos to everyone
"I'd rank [this episode] in my top 3 of all time. Maybe even top 2." - Kim
In which Shawn & Kim nibble on the return of The Walking Dead and Daryl's arms. Shawn: So we start off the second half of Season 6 with a bang (too soon?) and in some ways I have less to say about good episodes than I do about the crappy ones. All of these comments are preceded by the note that I love this show. 1. ) No lie, it was worth a "Hell yeah" and a loud "That's right!" when Daryl shot the smelly (my assumption) and unwashed biker gang with the rocket launcher. Welcome back, Daryl. It was
Craig and Mendes re-team for an effort that falls short of Skyfall’s heights, but not by much.
After the nearly universal acclaim and gigantic box office for the previous Bond outing, Skyfall, any follow-up was likely to suffer in comparison, even with the same creative team largely intact. Sure enough, the general consensus upon Spectre’s release seemed to be a resounding “meh” and lower ticket sales, but what all of that apathy masked was that judged on its own merits it’s still one of the strongest Bond films ever. Does the story make complete sense? Nope, but that’s never really been a drawback in this series. Sam Mendes returns to direct an ambitious tale that features the