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Your Thanksgiving TV marathon guide: Friday

It’s as much of an annual tradition as turkey, football, and awkward family dynamics — the Thanksgiving weekend TV marathon. With Thursday behind you, why not go to the fridge, get some leftovers, and settle in to that nice groove in the sofa. And look, we’ve already done the hard part for you. Here’s our guide to the best marathon programming for Friday, Nov. 27.

*Bravo is running The Real Housewives of New Jersey all day long. I don’t know why exactly this qualifies as “special” holiday programming since they pretty much air the various Housewives incarnations all the time anyway. But hey, that doesn’t mean it ain’t still tasty. Watch these well-mannered ladies and their tastefully decorated homes…Ah, who are we kidding? Let the catfighting and kitsch begin!

*For a classier (but just as bawdy) bunch of dames, head over to WE for its Golden Girls marathon.

*Nothing will make you feel lazier than spending a whole day watching brawny men risk their lives to catch Alaskan King Crab. That’s right, Discovery is trotting out a mess of Deadliest Catch episodes. So bust out the Slanket and heat up some crab dip. Yummo!

*We would never actually advocate watching E!’s “Kardashiathon“, but we do like the cute name they came up with. Instead, why not check out a much better show from another L.A. hip zip, SOAPnet’s “Chillin’ with Dylan” Beverly Hills, 90210 marathon?

*Thursday’s James Bond marathon over on Syfy continues on Day 2 with Thunderball, From Russia With Love, You Only Live Twice, Diamonds Are Forever, Casino Royale, Goldeneye, Goldfinger, and Never Say never Again.

*Finally, TV Land gets a gold star for its nostalgic block of Sanford & Son episodes. Interesting footnote: When my brother and I were kids, we named our cats Fred and Lamonte. Just saying. Oh, and by the way, best…theme song…ever.  I’ll tell you what I’m thankful for this holiday, Quincy Jones!

What will you be watching?

Your Thanksgiving TV marathon guide: Thursday

It’s as much of an annual tradition as turkey, football, and awkward family dynamics — the Thanksgiving TV marathon. You know the drill, you’re stuffed full of mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie and you can’t bear to watch the hopeless Detroit Lions take on the Green Bay Packers, so you start flipping channels looking for something…anything to get you through the day and maybe facilitate a nap. But so many channels. Well, let us be your guide. Here’s our guide to the best marathon programming for Thursday, Nov. 26.

*We’re guessing that A&E’s The First 48 marathon might be a little bleak for what’s essentially a feel-good holiday, what with its tick-tock investigations of homicides and what not. May we suggest FX’s Home Alone marathon? That’s right, nothing but Home Alone flicks from noon to midnight. Because nothing goes with candied yams like a heaping helping of Culkin. Warning, if they include the Macaulay-free Home Alone 4 with French Stewart, acid reflux may ensue.

*It wouldn’t be a national holiday without a round-the-clock dose of Bond, James Bond. Kicking off at 8 a.m., the good folks at SyFy are busting out Dr. No, License to Kill, Live and Let Die, The Spy Who Loved Me, Tomorrow Never Dies, Casino Royale, For Your Eyes Only, and The Man With the Golden Gun.

*When it comes to comfort food, no one tops TV Land. And they’ve outdone themselves this year with The Brady Bunch from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., followed by Little House on the Prairie from 6 to 9 p.m., and topped off with a three-hour string of classic Roseanne Thanksgiving specials. We’re hoping this blissful block of programming will include this gem…

*If Dad’s a bit grumpy with these offerings, why not let him settle into his La-Z Boy with Spike’s Band of Brothers marathon? After which he can tell you how spoiled your generation is.

What will you be watching?

Joseph Wiseman: A tribute to the late Dr. No

Joseph Wiseman, the Canadian-born actor best known for his deliciously evil portrayal of the James Bond villain, Dr. No, passed away yesterday at age 91. Wiseman appeared in a slew of Broadway productions, television shows, and movies such as Viva Zapata! with Marlon Brando and The Unforgiven with Burt Lancaster. But he will always be remembered for locking horns with Sean Connery’s agent 007 in 1962’s Dr. No. Wiseman’s character, a mad scientist with an arsenal of fiendishly wry quips, a charter membership in SPECTRE, and a nasty atomic-powered radio-beam weapon, became the prototypical Bond villain. Later in his life, the reclusive actor said of his most famous role: “I had no idea what I was letting myself in for. I had no idea it would achieve the success that it did. I know nothing about mysteries. I don’t take to them. As far as I was concerned, I thought it might be just another Grade-B Charlie Chan mystery.” How wrong he was.

It’s hard to imagine what the subsequent 007 movies would have looked like without his invention of the Bond baddie archetype. But we suspect they wouldn’t have been nearly as enduring or indelible. Don’t believe us? Just take a look at this clip from the film where Connery (in a sweet Nehru jacket) and Ursula Andress’ foxy Honey Rider square off with Dr. No in his groovy island lair.

Was Dr. No your favorite Bond villain PopWatchers? What are some of Wiseman’s most moments?

Daniel Craig popsicles: Finally, the meaning of 'sex on a stick'?

Delmontedanielcraig_lIn honor of National Ice Cream Week in the UK, Del Monte Superfruit Smoothies has sculpted a limited edition popsicle in the shape of Daniel Craig’s nude torso. The frozen treat — said to come in blueberry, pomegranate, and cranberry flavors and be under 100 calories each — is the result of a poll of more than 1,000 women, the majority of whom wanted the image of Craig, emerging from the water in Casino Royale, immortalized.

Two questions: Could you actually eat this popsicle in public? (Like the model in this photo, I don’t think I could face Craig — or anyone else — when I licked those abs.) And if America were to offer such a delicacy for what is allegedly the 25th anniversary of our National Ice Cream Month — July! — whose form should it take? I’d vote for sticking with Craig’s 007. For starters, it’s kind of awesome how his torso glistens when he begins to melt, as though he’s wet from the sea. And there’s less guilt when you can think of it as an iconic character instead of an actual person.

Your nominees?

addCredit(“Del Monte/Splash News”)

James Bond is saving the global box office: I'm shaken!

Quantumofsolace02_lIn case you haven’t heard, one bit of big news that came out of the movie industry’s annual Las Vegas convention, ShoWest, today was that foreign box office receipts now make up 65 percent of Hollywood’s global theatrical revenues. Sixty-five percent! That’s almost two-thirds! That means that what we here in the U.S. and Canada spend amounts to a fractional one-third of the average movie’s worldwide take! Whoa!

Why should we care? The time-tested theory has it that in catering more and more to an international crowd, Hollywood is placing its bets on movies that can be appreciated by the broadest possible audience (i.e. films overloaded with gunfights, special effects, and superheroes) and giving up on straight dramas and smart comedies (whose themes and jokes tend to get lost in translation). A quick scan of 2008’s top box office earners bears that out: Big winners like Quantum of Solace (which earned 71 percent of its global box office overseas), Indiana Jones 4 (60 percent), and Mamma Mia! (76 percent) relied heavily on foreign crowds to boost the bottom line; perceived disappointments like The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (66 percent) were saved by money earned elsewhere; and hit domestic comedies like Step Brothers (22 percent) and Pineapple Express (14 percent) struggled internationally. Of course, studios are still making funny films like Pineapple Express, but I can report that my hunt for a basic drama that even closely resembles, say, 1988’s Best Picture, Rain Man (which grossed $354.8 mil worldwide…in 1988 dollars!) turned up nil. (Closest thing I could find was the giant-visual-effect-disguised-as-drama The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.)

So, okay, point proven. But lemme try this on you: Perhaps we should just get used to the fact that dinosaurs like Rain Man are extinct, and we should be glad that James Bond and Indiana Jones and their friends are propping up the box office. After all, domestic attendance declined in 2008 (although it has rebounded in 2009, so far), domestic receipts were basically flat, and Hollywood should be glad it has any good news to report in the current economic climate. What do you think? Should we just embrace this trend and be glad that, at the very least, there’s something playing in the multiplex? Or do you want more Rain Mans?

 

addCredit(“Karen Ballard”)

'Slumdog Millionaire' star Freida Pinto as a Bond babe: Good idea?

Friedapinto_lPeople.com is quoting a story from the U.K.’s Sun newspaper, which says that Slumdog Millionaire breakout beauty Freida Pinto has reportedly been in talks to appear in the next James Bond movie. So, with all those qualifiers about the report’s veracity in place, I have just one question: Good idea or bad idea? I didn’t get much of a feel for the 24-year-old actress in Slumdog Millionaire, since she didn’t have many lines in the film; certainly, she’s easy on the eyes. Then again, that sounds just like the classic Bond girl: very pretty and doesn’t say very much. What do you think?

addCredit(“Alexandra Wyman/WireImage.com”)

Will Bond babetude make Olga Kurylenko a star?

Olga_lRefreshing our photo gallery of the Best and Worst Bond Babes can’t help but bring out the Maxim in us, so we feel no qualms about linking to Maxim‘s extensive photo spread on Olga Kurylenko, soon to become world-famous as 007’s love interest Camille in Nov. 14’s Quantum of Solace. Or is she? Looking back at Bond babes past, it’s clear that, while some become iconic in their own right (Ursula Andress) and others go on to have long and distinguished careers (Jane Seymour), most tend to fall off the radar. Check out Ms. Kurylenko and let us know whether you think she’ll be the next Famke Janssen or just the next Izabella Scorupco.

More on Bond Babes:
Poll: Quantum of Solace Bond babes
Reader picks: Who should be the next Bond girl?
All about James Bond

'Quantum of Solace': Let's brainstorm a better title!

Quantumsolace_lTrue confessions time: I haven’t been super excited about seeing a movie on its opening weekend since Death Race Sex and the City. But with the Nov. 14 release date for Quantum of Solace closing in, all that’s about to change. The only problem, as I see it, is that jank title, which like the raw foods movement — insert horrified squeak from my tumtee here — has never caught on with me.

So what say you all? Let’s brainstorm a better title for what looks like the action event of the fall movie season. I’ll start:

* Incendiary Device
* Inconsolable Rage (I got that phrase right from the teaser trailer. Thanks, Dame Judi!)
* Please Wear the Square-Cut Trunks, 007!

Okay, clearly I am not good at this movie-titling business, so I’m passing the torch to you. Get to work in the comments section below! Daniel Craig offers his undying gratitude in advance. Sigh.

More on James Bond, ‘Quantum of Solace':
Visit EW.com’s James Bond HQ (it’s awesome!)
Read Lisa Schwarzbaum’s ‘Quantum of Solace’ review
Read EW’s current cover story on ‘Quantum of Solace’ (featuring exclusive pics!)
Listen to EW’s movie critics talk 007
James Bond: The Spy Who Raised Me

Site of the Day: Rejected James Bond theme songs

AlicecooperAmy Winehouse, you may recall, was supposed to record the theme song to the upcoming Bond film Quantum of Solace. Sadly, we may never get a chance to hear what that might’ve sounded like. But Johnny Cash singing his countrified interpretation of ThunderballPet Shop Boys’ take on The Living Daylights? Alice Cooper (pictured) offering his version of The Man with the Golden Gun? Yes..yes..and yes. An enterprising reporter for the website of London’s Guardian has assembled a list of Bond-theme tracks that were rejected by the film studio — and even provides links to performances that can be found on YouTube. Some tracks are good, some less so; all are guaranteed to yield more than a quantum of silly enjoyment.

Who's your favorite Bond villain?

Goldgingervillian_lAll I know about the new James Bond movie, Quantum of Solace, is what I read on EW.com, but something has me worried: the name of the new villain, played by Mathieu Amalric: Monsieur Greene. Ooh, scary! What happened to the tradition of giving the big Bond bad a cool name, like Dr. No, Le Chiffre, Ernst Stavros Blofeld, Francisco Scaramanga, and, my favorite, Auric Goldfinger (Gert Fröbe, pictured with Sean Connery’s Bond)?

All in all, Mr. Vert is going to have a hard time matching up to my man Auric in the coolest-Bond-villain-ever competition. First of all, Goldfinger has built an entire lifetime of wickedness around the pursuit of a commodity that happens to appear in his last name. (What is Monsieur Greene going to do, destroy America’s stock of lettuce?) And Goldfinger has by the far the best murderous assistant in any of the movies: Oddjob (if only for the razor-Frisbee derby). Plus, even though Bond could outcheat him in golf, Goldfinger could nearly match 007 in a zinger-off. (”Do you expect me to talk?” "No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die.")

But that’s just me. Who’s your favorite Bond villain of all time? Name your nominee(s) in the comments section below, and be sure to state your reasons why. The most convincing answers may appear in an upcoming EW.com gallery!

More on James Bond, ‘Quantum of Solace':
Visit EW.com’s James Bond HQ (it’s awesome!)
Read Lisa Schwarzbaum’s ‘Quantum of Solace’ review
Read EW’s current cover story on ‘Quantum of Solace’ (featuring exclusive pics!)
Listen to EW’s movie critics talk 007
James Bond: The Spy Who Raised Me

addCredit(“Everett Collection”)

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