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Tag: Entertainment Geekly (1-10 of 104)

Entertainment Geekly: What 'Hobbit 3' says about Peter Jackson


There’s a moment in The Hobbit 3 that I’m going to spoil for you, because nothing else that happens in The Hobbit 3 really matters.

It’s a moment of crisis for Thorin Oakenshield. “Who is Thorin Oakenshield?” is something you might be asking, even if you’ve seen the first two Hobbit movies. It’s hard to keep track of names in these Hobbit movies, even though half the dialogue is just people saying names.

Which is strange. Because when Jackson and co-writers Philippa Boyens and Fran Walsh adapted The Lord of the Rings, they found a way to sharpen J.R.R. Tolkien’s dense prose into thrill-drunk poetry. One thinks of Tolkien in fussy terms. The Oxford don. The professor writing fantasy novels as a faux-linguistics delivery system. The oldest and most British of old British fellows, with a perpetual pipe, who always thought his translation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight was more important than anything he ever wrote about rings and hobbits and wise wizened wizards.


Geekly Mailbag: Should they even make 'Star Trek 3'?

I had a weird Star Trek phase when I was a kid. Not “weird” like “obsessive,” or “weird” like all nerdy phases seemed to be back then. I mean that the way I came to the series was strange, and I’m hard-pressed to geolocate myself in the continuum of Star Trek fans. Trek fandom is literally Generational: The most distinct line in the sand gets drawn between those people who will always roll hard for the original crew and those people who prefer The Next Generation.

The distinctions are vague, but obvious. Kirk and Co. were bold adventurers setting off to cheap Pop Art worldscapes populated by midcentury allegories. Picard and friends were more cerebral but also more whimsical. To a certain extent, those two generations are their respective captains: Brash and bold and cheesy-wonderful Kirk, wry and troubled and dripping-with-gravitas Picard.

You can drill down further. There are people who roll hard for Deep Space Nine, a TV show that doesn’t get the respect it deserves for pioneering long-form sci-fi serialization. I know people who love Voyager, a show that always felt saddled with overriding anxiety-of-influence syndrome—it wanted to be a weirder Deep Space Nine, but kept getting turned into a goofier Next Generation. But Voyager has Kathryn Janeway, and this: READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: In praise of things that don't look cool


“Stylish” means everything and nothing. It is a meaningless word, and it is top-heavy with disparate meaning, subjective the way that Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle is subjective. Clothes that looks “stylish” now will look goofy 10 years from now. In twenty years they’ll be retro; in thirty years, vintage; in forty years, normcore; in a century, steampunk. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly Mailbag: 'Star Wars' edition


Star Wars! Nothing but Star Wars! Gimme those Star Wars! Don’t let them end!

More than 37 years since the first Star Wars opened in theaters—and almost 37 years since Bill Murray swaggered his way through a lounge-singer version of the Star Wars theme—a trailer for the seventh Star Wars movie arrived on the internet. If you’re like me, you watched the teaser for The Force Awakens early Friday morning, still in that post-Thanksgiving daze when everything feels like a food-coma hallucination. In such a state, it sure looked like Force Awakens has everything. They’ve got stormtroopers and lightsabers aplenty, blasters and speeders galore. You want X-Wingamabobs? They’ve got twenty!

But who cares? No big deal. We want more. Specifically, readers wanted to figure out just what, precisely, will be happening in the seventh Star Wars movie, which is still one year away, even though we’ve been talking about it for over two years already. Readers threw out some elaborate plot possibilities, some even crazier than my whole “The Alliance is the new Empire” theory. Let’s dig in! READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly Mailbag: 'Mockingjay' talkback and a defense of 'Assassin's Creed'


Big week for explosive arrows! Last week I reviewed Far Cry 4, one of the best videogames I’ve played this year; I also saw The Hunger Games—Mockingjay: Part 1, one of the best non-movies I’ve seen this year. Readers responded with their thoughts about Ubisoft’s franchises and some deep thoughts about the state of moviemaking. If you want to join the conversation, or just want to tell me I’m wrong, email me at darren_franich@ew.com. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: Is 'Mockingjay - Part 1' really a movie?

This is not a rant about anything. I need to clarify that up front, because 2014 has been a horrible year for ranting. But it’s also been great year for very good things that straddle the line between how we used to define television and how we used to define movies.

Is True Detective a miniseries or an 8-hour movie? Should The Knick rank in Steven Soderbergh’s filmography? Fargo and Hannibal transformed well-trod source material into a new kind of remake—half greatest hits compilation, half concept album. Not for nothing, 2014 was also the year that Shonda Rhimes claimed Thursday for old-fashioned weekly TV, with three flavors of throwback procedural (doctor show, politics show, lawyer show) infused with soap operatics.

On the big screen, Hollywood’s embrace of aggressive franchising came up with fascinating new mutant forms of sequel-prequel-reboots. It’s become common to compare the cinematic output of Marvel Studios to television production: Kevin Feige is the showrunner; different directors serve the Marvel vision first and their own vision second; cast members sign seven-picture contracts, the new incarnation of the old TV-actor Faustian bargain. (Steady work = no freedom.) You can feel the TV-ification of cinema in small ways and large. Wasn’t Dwayne Johnson’s Hercules just a more expensive version of Kevin Sorbo’s Hercules? (I mean that as a compliment; Hercules is one of the best watch-it-on-a-plane movies released this year.) Isn’t Horrible Bosses 2 just a renegade from the parallel universe where Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis, and Charlie Day starred in a middlingly popular bro-com on Fox? READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: On 'Dogma,' Kevin Smith, and the road not taken


Let’s pretend there are two Kevin Smiths: Kevin Smith the Film Director, and Kevin Smith the Everything Else.

Consider the latter: Kevin Smith is a podcaster many times over. Take every podcast he’s ever recorded; beam it into space. Someday humanity will be dead, and somewhere, out there, the aliens will have still have years’ worth of Kevin Smith talking, talking, talking. READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly Mailbag: 'Interstellar' rage


Christopher Nolan made Memento, but he also made The Dark Knight Rises. Great filmmakers can make bad movies: This is not a particularly complicated equation. And Nolan’s new space melodrama Interstellar is not a particularly complicated movie. The science is elaborate and insane, but the emotional stakes are simple: Father loves daughter, father saves humanity.

But Nolan is one of our plottiest filmmakers. (Most films have three acts; Nolan’s movies usually have at least six, usually out of order and/or overlapping.) I attempted to explain the plot of Interstellar, but even I ran up against some impenetrable cosmo-logic. Some readers in the comments offered helpful suggestions. Some readers were angry that people didn’t like Interstellar, a transcendent visually stimulating three-hour odyssey. Some readers were angry that people liked Interstellar, a gooey three-hour snoozefest. Some heavy thoughts on Interstellar, is what I’m getting at.

Let’s dig into the reactions, shall we? (Warning: A million spoilers for Interstellar follow.) READ FULL STORY

Entertainment Geekly: '2001' in 2014 -- reimagining Kubrick's classic via 'Interstellar'



A proto-human HOMINID kneels on the ground of the prehistoric Earth. Suddenly, a large shadow covers him. He looks up and sees a large rectangular MONOLITH.

A voiceover begins, British.

BRITISH VOICEOVER: The first recorded monolith appeared on Earth 4 million years ago, in the Pleistocene era.


Entertainment Geekly: 'Simulacra and Simulation,' Taylor Swift, and New York

History reduces the 2009 Video Music Awards to the big moment when Kanye West interrupted Taylor Swift to talk about Beyoncé. This is one of the most important things that ever happened to Kanye West and Taylor Swift; for Beyoncé, it was something that happened on a Sunday.

I remember much more about the 2009 Video Music Awards. I remember that the show ended with Jay Z taking all the time in the world to get to the stage so he could duet with Alicia Keys on “Empire State of Mind,” a track that already felt destined to become a Hall of Fame New York anthem, insofar as it already felt like Jay Z would be performing some variation of “Empire State of Mind” for the rest of the 21st century. READ FULL STORY

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