Results tagged “Television”

Ludwig (1973) Blu-ray Review: The Historical Epic Wherein Nothing Really Happens

Love it or hate it, Arrow Academy has unveiled an undeniably beautiful box set for one of Luchino Visconti's final films.
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I would only be slightly remiss were I to openly admit history was never my strongest subject in school. Truth be told, when I wasn't having assorted slurs shouted at me in the hallways or eluding those who wanted to stuff me in a locker, I was safe in my room at home watching movies most people had forgotten about. And the truly beautiful part about those otherwise terrible years was my ability to sit through even the longest, most boring film known to man and still be able to focus on it. Sadly, enduring great strides of monotony is

Book Review: Star Trek: The Classic UK Comics, Vol. 2: Where Some Fans May Never Have Gone Before

The crew's encounters with beings different from ourselves is still as fun and fascinating today as it ever was.
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There are so many branches to the Star Trek universe: novelizations, movies, re-boot film series, animated series, magazines, television series, toys, games, etc. that even the most dedicated fan, Trekkie or Trekker, might have trouble keeping up. The original series (TOS) first aired on American television in September of 1966. It included its now immortal cast of characters - Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner), his Vulcan first officer Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy), ship's doctor Leonard McCoy (DeForest Kelley), communications officer Lt. Uhura (Nichelle Nichols), helmsman Lt. Sulu (George Takei) and Ensign Chekov (Walter Koenig). That key crew accompanied its

Actress Susan Yeagley on Christopher Guest's Mascots

Yeagley reveals what it was like joining the dinner party that is a Guest production.
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It has been 10 years since Christopher Guest has treated the world to a film. It is not that Guest has been dormant. He has been busy with television and commercial work as a director, writer, and actor. But the wait is over as his new comedy, Mascots premieres on Thursday, October 13th in select theaters and on Netflix. Mascots follows the stories of different people who “mascot” as these individuals ready themselves to compete in the World Mascot Association’s annual competition known as the “Fluffies.” The chosen twenty who are asked to compete are all hoping to take home

Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You Movie Review: A Sensitive Portrait of a Socially Conscious Mind

The creator of All in the Family looks at his life, career, and the family ghosts that still haunt him.
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"Each of us is responsible for our own happiness," says television producer and impresario Norman Lear. And Lear, 90 years young, has found plenty of happiness in his own life that it's hard to fathom all the additional happiness he brought to others with his television shows, capturing hearts and opening up minds. It's said there was a time "before Norman" and "after Norman," and in Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You audiences see what the world was like, both before and after Lear's ground-breaking television shows asked audiences to think and act. His socially critical and controversial television

Thoughtful & Abstract: DC TV

"For every Human Target that comes and goes without notice, there will be a Constantine that leaves far too early." - Shawn
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In which Shawn and Kim discuss the weekly DC Comics-based shows and shirtless heroes. Shawn: I've caught up on most of my comic-based shows recently. One of the newest ones elicited quite a few opinions, so I thought we should touch base on where we're at with these. For every Human Target that comes and goes without notice, there will be a Constantine that comes into our world and leaves far too early. DC'S LEGENDS OF TOMORROW (CW) The latest addition to the Arrowverse is a breath of fresh air. I am not going to deny I love this series

Why We Watch: Looking at our TV Choices

Genre? Cast? Plot? Storytelling? What factors entice you to tune in to a show, or take a pass?
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Even with DVR and on-Demand viewing to allow maximum scheduling opportunities, the amount of tv content available to us far exceeds that amount that we can actually consume. To that end, we must make conscious choices about what we choose to view, and when. I got to thinking about this the other day when I went to add Elementary to my Netflix queue only to find it isn't available. I wondered why I didn't start watching it from the beginning even though I remember finding the premise interesting. That got me to thinking about that choice we make - do

iZombie: The Complete First Season DVD Review: An Enjoyable Take on the Zombie Narrative

A young medical resident's perfect life is turned upside down when she becomes a zombie.
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The CW series iZombie is loosely based on the DC/Vertigo comic of the same name by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred. It follows Olivia “Liv” Moore, a young, beautiful, and brilliant medical resident who is engaged to the love of her life, Major, and whose successful life is all mapped out. One night she accepts an invitation to go to a party with her fellow residents where other party-goers take a new drug called “Utopium,” which turns them into ravenous flesh-eating zombies. Liv awakes the morning after the attack in a body bag on the shore and finds that she

Vikings: Season Three DVD Review: Praise Odin or Jesus, Vikings March On

Ragnar raids in Season Three of History's Vikings.
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History’s Vikings takes to the shores of new lands with this DVD release of the third season of this Irish-Canadian co-production. Created by Michael Hirst, who many will recognize as the screenwriter of the 1998 film Elizabeth and the Emmy-winning TV series The Tudors, Vikings tells the hirsute tale of a squad of Norsemen in the Dark Ages. Hirst’s affection for antiquity is certainly apparent in the comprehensive and energetic production design, which is doubtlessly not without historical inaccuracies but nevertheless brimming with colour and excitement. The series is set after the Germanic Iron Age in the midst of various

Callaway Went Thataway DVD Review: Mad Men and a Drunken Hopalong Cassidy

Fred MacMurray, Dorothy McGuire, and multiple Howard Keels shine in this delightful MGM comedy.
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As the American motion picture industry first began to boom in the first half of the 20th Century, Hollywood moviemakers found it was quite profitable to go up into the hills for weeks on end - years, perhaps - and shoot one low-budget western after another. In fact, so many of these cowboy quickies - "oaters," as they are affectionately known as today - were produced, that most of them didn't even get traditional movie posters in some circuits. Instead, bijou owners near and far would display generic movie posters advertising the Tim McCoy, Tex Ritter, or Tom Mix (or

Spenser: For Hire: The Complete Second Season (1986-87) DVD Review: SPEN-SAH!

The criminally neglected cult ABC TV series starring the late great Robert Urich returns courtesy of the Warner Archive.
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A frequently used adage from the past likes to remind us "The more things change, the more they stay the same." This can be particularly pithy when it comes to television shows, including the numerous changes ABC's '80s private eye neo-noir series Spenser: For Hire went through during its second season. From the very opening of its second season, Robert Urich's titular P.I. experiences new changes, beginning with his old abandoned firehouse station pad - which he had moved into after his quaint top-floor apartment burned down in the first season - being replaced by a new and entirely different

CHiPs: The Complete Third Season DVD Review: Lay Down the Roller Boogie

Finally, the classic cop show we all love to love for all the wrong reasons returns.
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Were one to order nachos at a restaurant in the plainest, most simplistic form possible, they would most likely receive a pile of crispy tortilla eighths covered in a melted mass of dairy-gleaned and coagulated delight. "Cheesy chips," if you will. Similarly, were one to sit back and watch even one episode of a certain, lighthearted television series about the California Highway Patrol as made during the late '70s and early '80s, they might think something along the line of how cheesy CHiPs is. And yet, despite all of the bad acting, ridiculously lurid storylines, and a noticeable lack of

Lovejoy Series 3 DVD Review: Is Lovejoy Looking for Love?

A great edition in the series, with lots of the usual fun that Ian McShane's Lovejoy brings.
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In the second season of Lovejoy, the last time we saw the irascible but ever-charming antiques dealer played by Ian McShane, he was swindling (for a good cause, naturally) crooked antiques dealer Harry Catapodis (Brian Blessed) in order to help out a Japanese businessman (Mako) and a lovely widow Victoria (Joanna Lumley) who had both been cheated by Harry. Lovejoy Series 3, recently released on DVD by Acorn Media, picks up a year later, after Lovejoy has been taking a holiday in Spain, where he has enjoyed (and spent) all the proceeds from that last big deal. He returns home

Daniel Boone: The Complete Series - 50th Anniversary DVD Review: A Dream Come-a-Truer

The Fox TV Archives makes its debut with an anticipated re-release the out-of-print TV favorite.
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Since the building of the Manufactured on Demand bandwagon, nearly every major studio in the home video industry has begun the seemingly-endless process of making hundreds (if not thousands) of rarely-seen movies and television shows available to the public upon order. The process has also enabled certain moratorium materials to be put back into print. And with the debut of Fox Home Entertainment's new MOD sub-label "20th Century Fox TV Archives", fans of the classic adventure/western program Daniel Boone are now able to fill in the gap left behind by the inefficiency and abrupt departure of two minor distributors from

Spenser: For Hire: The Complete First Season (1985-86) DVD Review: Great '80s Neo-Noir

The criminally neglected cult ABC TV series starring the late great Robert Urich returns courtesy of the Warner Archive.
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Anyone who has so much as flipped on a television set once for even only five minutes is probably quite well aware that detective shows are easier to find than one's own ass with the assistance of both hands and a flashlight. Now, when it comes down to finding a good detective series, however, things can become rather tricky. It certainly isn't easy in this day and age, what with their being seventeen kajillion different television channels full of tripe at our disposal. Believe it or not, it was even harder back when we only had three networks to choose

The Musketeers (2014) Blu-ray Review: Finally, A Reimagining Worth Viewing

Sporting great battles, amazing costumes, and a fresh take, this incarnation of the Alexandre Dumas tale has a lot of potential.
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As I had iterated in a somewhat recent article, there are really only a venerable handful of classic literary characters and stories that seem to re-emerge in order to be retold time and time again upon small and big screens alike. And there is certainly little doubt in my own mind that the classic Alexandre Dumas 1844 work Les Trois Mousquetaires falls somewhere at the very top of that limited grouping; its immortal characters having appeared in many various adaptations over the last couple of centuries, along with the particular tale itself. Granted, some of us may be prone to

Beyond Westworld (1980) DVD Review: ...Where EVERYTHING Went Worng!

So it's a television spin-off set between the original film and its sequel, but which wholly ignores them and is set in a weird unannounced alternate reality. Got it.
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There are simply some ideas that look better on paper than they do on film. The impending JJ Abrams' HBO reboot of the 1973 creepy science fiction masterpiece Westworld - a tale written and directed by author Michael Crichton, wherein an adult theme park with eerily human-like robots goes to Hell when the androids begin to act out in a most inefficient (read: deadly) manner - certainly seems like one to me. After all, once the circuits hit the fan in the show, where can you possibly go without any hope of things becoming a bit redundant and silly? Well,

Testament (1983) DVD Review: Still Waiting for the World to Deserve It

One of the most powerfully realistic (and yet simplistic) post-apocalyptic movies ever made.
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Every single time one of my patented and less-than-stellar efforts at conversing with a fellow human being in the interest of that mysterious dating thing occurs - and subsequently fails - I often find myself devoting a fraction of my imagination and time to the possibility that somewhere, in an alternate timeline, it succeeded. This, of course, opens up the floodgates to a variety of silliness on my part, wherein I ponder what might have happened to world had various individuals and places taken different paths than the ones we know and remember them for today. And I'm not the

The Girl in the Empty Grave DVD Review: Andy Griffith Shines in Forgotten TV Thriller

The Warner Archive dusts off yet another obscurity from the vaults.
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After all-but-becoming Sheriff Andy Taylor in that long-running, still-in-syndication classic television series with the whistling theme song, Andy Griffith was a natural selection when there was a small town country cop part to be cast. Sadly, the public apparently had an issue with Griffith being cast as a lawman within the confines of a fictitious rural community if the subject was that of a serious one. A 1974 TV-movie entitled Winter Kill starring Griffith was intended to sell a series to network audiences, and, when that failed, was altered into what would become the short-lived Adams of Eagle Lake, where

The Twilight Zone - Essential Episodes (55th Anniversary Collection) DVD Review: Gift It or Rent It

Lives up to its subtitle admirably, though not for those looking for the quality.
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The groundbreaking, thought-provoking science fiction television series The Twilight Zone is truly a gift that just keeps on-a-givin'. Who - apart from a fortune-telling napkin dispenser in a tiny rural town somewhere - could have possibly conceived that when a visionary named Rod Serling first presented television viewers with his first creepy look into his now-legendary fifth dimension all those years ago that the show would still be inspiring and delighting people all over the world? Never you mind the countless times Serling and his crackshot writing staff destroyed said world in the process: they still made it happen just

Search: The Complete Series DVD Review: About 40 Years Ahead of Its Time

Search is perhaps the greatest "lost" TV show of all time.
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Search was a show that aired for one season back in 1972-73, and if you do not remember it, join the club. After watching Search: The Complete Series, what surprised me the most was that it never developed a Star Trek-type of cult following, because Search was about 40 years ahead of its time. The recent Warner Archive set includes all 23 episodes on six DVDs. Unfortunately, the pilot is not a part of the package. Search started out as a TV-movie titled Probe (1972), which was the original title of the series, but legal issues forced the change. We
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