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"Us" Is a Really Weird Movie, And Isn't That Great?: Review

Film Review: UsThere's a lot to be said about the new movie Us. Don't worry, I won't spoil anything about the plot, all you need to know is that it's a horror movie about a family who encounters it's doppelgängers. Us, Jordan Peele's follow-up to Get Out, is wacky and wild and sure to be polarizing.
It has been five full years since Lupita Nyong'o won an Oscar and this is basically her first leading role in a movie. I find few things more frustrating than when Hollywood fails to capitalize on exciting talent. But thank god for Jordan Peele, who has given Nyong'o a doozy of a role, or double role rather, as the actors also play their doppelgängers. She inhabits the two characters, one a protective mother and the other a crazed killer, by changing her movements in ways that are strangely complimentary. It's thrilling to watch. Nyong'o's screen presence has a commanding elegance that recalls the best of Old Hollywood stars. I'm so glad an in…
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Hostless Oscars Lead to Mostly Uneventful Show: Review

2019 Oscars Recap and Review 
As I said in my Oscars preview, the biggest question of the night would be how the show would fare without a host for the first time in thirty years. Twitter seemed to think it fared very well, with many commenting on how smoothly the show went and some even hailing it as the best Oscar ceremony in years. However, I found it to be a little boring. Without a host, it lacked a certain energy. It just went from award to performance to award without much room to breathe. There weren't any big laughs or any cathartic moments. There were no montages or appearances that paid tribute to Hollywood history. Sure, it moved along at an efficient pace, but it felt business-like in a way. It's the Oscars, give us some pageantry!
The show kicked off with a performance by Queen and Adam Lambert, because Queen biopic Bohemian Rhapsody was up for several awards. That was a terrible idea. I understand that some people think Queen's music is good, but even they mu…

Oscars 2019: Who Will Win?

2019 Oscar Preview and Predictions
The conversation around this year's Oscars has been more focused on the show itself rather than who the winners will be. After the outcry from the film community over changes that the Academy planned to make the ceremony last only three hours, the Academy has capitulated on most of those issues. All 24 categories will be shown live on TV, last year's acting winners will return as presenters, and all nominated songs will be performed. But somehow the show will still be only three hours. [Side note: Why are the producers obsessed with getting the show to be three hours? Do they think it being long is contributing to declining ratings? Well, the ceremony hasn't clocked in at under three hours since 1972. The show's been long for a lot longer than ratings have been going down. So let the Oscars be long. They should be long - there's a lot to do!]
Another aspect of this show that has been generating more buzz than the actual nominees …

The Ten Best TV Shows of 2018

Top Ten Television Shows of 2018
10. Escape at Dannemora (Showtime)I wasn't planning on watching Escape at Dannemora, but I'm glad I did. We already knew that Ben Stiller was talented at directing more than just comedy (yes, I'm standing up for The Secret Life of Walter Mitty) and he certainly delivers with this 7+ hour miniseries about a 2015 prison break. The pace is deliberate, slow, and it's exactly what this kind of material needs. It features great performances by Benicio del Toro and Paul Dano as the inmates who escape and an unrecognizable Patricia Arquette as the woman who helps them.  9. Love Island (ITV2 in the UK, Hulu in the US)Reality shows rarely make my top ten list, but when one becomes as much of an international sensation as Love Island, my interest is piqued. The fourth series of the British dating competition show managed to do just that by being an utterly insane exaggeration of every dating trope there is. Trash TV at its finest! 8. The Kids Are Alr…