Many fans went into the second season of Game of Thrones, HBO’s adaptation of the epic George R. R. Martin series, The Song of Ice and Fire, wondering if creators David Benioff (Troy, X-Men Origins: Wolverine) and D. B. Weiss (debut writer/producer for Game of Thrones) could sustain the televised story past the death of Ned Stark (Sean Bean) and the initial splash of season one. But the remaining ensemble cast of Lena Headey (Cersei Lannister), Peter Dinklage (Tyrion Lannister), Emilia Clarke (Daenerys Targaryen), Kit Harington (Jon Snow), Michelle Fairley (Catelyn Stark), Sophie Turner (Sansa Stark), Jack Gleeson (Joffrey Baratheon), Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jamie Lannister), Maisie Williams (Arya Stark), Charles Dance (Tywin Lannister), Richard Madden (Robb Stark), Stephen Dillane (Stannis Baratheon) and Gethin Anthony (Renly Baratheon), among numerous others, stepped up to the plate, creating an equally solid season two that surpassed the expectations of fans and critics alike.
After five movies and billions of dollars earned at the box office, Stephenie Meyer’s The Twilight Saga has officially come to a close with simultaneous DVD releases of Breaking Dawn: Part 1 (Extended Edition) and Breaking Dawn: Part 2. The final films detail Bella Swan’s (Kristen Stewart) transition from clumsy love-struck teen bride into badass vampire mother. Part 1 of Breaking Dawn sees Bella and her vampire lover Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson) through their long-awaited wedding at home and subsequent honeymoon on a romantic, deserted island in Brazil.
Matthew Weiner’s wildly successful Mad Men, the AMC series that pays homage to America’s dystopian past, provides a welcome departure from the seeming onslaught of programs that wallow in its dystopian future—be it zombie-infested, alien-invaded or just plain temporally displaced. With Mad Men, fans can enjoy all the same lost idealism while referencing their history books or, more likely, poring over Wikipedia in a “second-screen experience” dedicated to the backdrop of the show.
Pitch Perfect stars Anna Kendrick as Beca, an antisocial wannabe DJ and college freshman who is forced into joining the Barden Bellas, a disgraced all-girl a cappella group. Aubrey (Anna Camp), the Bellas’ leader, projectile vomited during their performance at Nationals the year before, costing them their chance at first place. In order to salvage their reputation, Aubrey and cofounder, Chloe (Brittany Snow) assemble a ragtag team of girls, including Beca and Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson). The film follows the girls’ hilarious struggles as they prepare for upcoming competitions, with a distinct focus on Beca’s effort to become more sociable and her budding romance with rival a cappella singer Jesse (Skylar Astin).
Arbitrage follows successful financier Robert Miller (Richard Gere) as he tries to cover up his fraudulent dealings and involvement in his mistress’ death before selling his company. Robert has it all – a loving family, loyal employees, exorbitant wealth, and power. He exudes a cool confidence and stoicism during troubling times, even when his life, work and reputation are at risk. Despite these strengths, he is not the man everyone thinks he is. He secretly spent half of his company’s funds for a private investment, and has a mistress his wife Ellen (Susan Sarandon) seems to know nothing about.
A sweet and endearing story about a boy who comes to a young married couple longing for a child to call their own, The Odd Life of Timothy Green is a tale only Disney can tell. While the couple struggles to find happiness in the midst their struggle to conceive, a young boy, Timothy (CJ Adams), miraculously appears one night calling them mom and dad. Filled with crisp frames and vivid colors, this film is not only a heartwarming story but also a visual masterpiece. Jennifer Garner plays Cindy Green, a tour guide for the town’s local museum who faces difficult times as she tries to cope with her in inability to have a child with her husband Joe (Joel Edgerton).
Danielle Panabaker's Top Pop Picks
"I'm really into the Avett Brothers as of late."
"My girlfriends are I - we are very nerdy. We started a book club and the first book we read was Gone Girl."
"I thought it was a great film and I thought Jennifer Lawrence was incredible, you know those angry tears, I've certainly experienced that."
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