The debut episode of HBO’s Girls opens with a break-up of sorts: during a fancy dinner with her parents, Hannah (played by Girls creator, writer, and director Lena Dunham) learns that she won’t be receiving financial assistance anymore. Mom and Dad have been supporting her “groovy lifestyle” since her college graduation two years ago and they’ve had enough. Hannah appears shocked, if not mildly offended, an expression which will last the entire season. She defends her unemployed status.
Paranorman is the second stop-motion animation film from LAIKA, the creators of 2009’s critically-acclaimed Coraline. Featuring the voice talents of John Goodman, Jeff Garlin, Leslie Mann and Casey Affleck, among others, Paranorman is the story of Norman, a zombie-obsessed social outcast who can communicate with spirits. This ability is, ironically, worthy of condemnation in a Salem-esque town steeped in supernatural lore; the town’s monument is a creepy old witch, sentenced to die 300 years before.
The sequel to 2010’s The Expendables is, in its simplest form, a continued celebration of past and present action film bad-asses, regardless of how old said bad-asses have become. It simultaneously lauds and jabs at the endurance of the actors made famous in in the 80s and early 90s, and doesn’t take itself too seriously (i.e. during the film’s climax, Arnold Schwarzenegger rehashes a famous Terminator zinger – can you guess which one?). It’s good old senseless fun. The film boasts the best of the best: Sylvester Stallone, Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, Chuck Norris and Jason Statham, just to name a few.
The climactic season finale of Desperate Housewives came along with the sad goodbyes of desperation from fans everywhere. The astute and crafty women of Wisteria Lane have been in our lives as a guilty pleasure for so long, leaving us wondering if there will be anything to ever replace them. Much like their urban counterpart Sex and the City we can only anticipate an ideal follow up movie featuring the progression of the women who have vastly redefined suburban life forever. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves here.
In the frantic opening scenes of People Like Us, Sam (Chris Pine) strides through companies, spitting out bull in rapid fire as a New York salesman. He does it all while wearing that slick squinty-eyed smile of the guy who knows he's good at this game of getting points by pulling fast ones. As it turns out, after he closes his latest deal, his boss (Jon Faverou) tells him that the FTC is going to be coming after him because of a poorly thought-out transfer of tomato juice. When Sam gets home to his girlfriend Hannah (Olivia Wilde), she informs him that all those calls he had been ignoring all day from his mother were to let him know that his father had passed.
People tend to remember history in a way that accommodates them best, and such fickle notions shimmer greater when remembering someone else. Thankfully, director Kevin Macdonald (Last King Of Scotland) turns in a masterful, unbiased documentary in Marley, co-produced by the late legend’s son Ziggy Marley and with around 60 personal interviews from friends and family. By showcasing Marley’s life through intimate and rare footage, we get a glimpse of a man that struggled with acceptance his whole life.
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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