Reviews

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by Alexa Duplisea

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Dancing With the Stars

I am no professional dancer, but while watching Dancing with The Stars, I just want to get up and shake my hips (not a pretty sight). This is definitely going to be on my list of good shows to watch.

Tuesday night at 9 p.m. was the results show for Monday night’s performances. Even though I was not able to see all the dances, the show gave a summary of the dances that were performed the night before. This gave me the opportunity to see the highlights and mistakes of each couple’s dance.

The best dance chosen by the fans was the jive, performed by Disney Channel star Zendaya Colemen and her partner Val Chmerkovskiy. The dance is fast paced and involves more quick feet movement than most styles of dancing. I was wishing that I could be Zendaya out there dancing around in that gold flapper dress. The couple earned a 26 out of 30 from  judges Bruno Tonioli, Carrie Ann Inaba, and Len Goodman, for their almost perfect performance  As Bruno put it, “A star is born big time!” Zendaya will definitely be seen on next week’s episode.

In this results show, the viewers eliminated one of the 12 couples by the end of the night. To extend the show, they had performances by Icona Pop singing, “I Love It,” a personal favorite of mine, and singer Josh Groban performed also.

Three couples sweat it out in jeopardy, waiting to see who among them would be eliminated; Dorthy Hamill and her partner Tristan MacManus had to drop out of the competition due to Dorthy’s serious back problems. So all the couples that were in jeopardy were safe, until the following week.

As much as I enjoyed this show, I think it would have been more enjoyable if I had watched Monday night’s performances. I really wish I had gotten to see each dance because the summary of the dances made me wish I saw all of them.

For someone who enjoys shows with real people and awesome dances, then this show is perfect. But to enjoy this show, a person should watch on Monday and Tuesday nights. Overall, I give this show 5 out of 5 stars!

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After Seth MacFarlane made viewers of the 2013 Oscars laugh and cringe, rumors have already started flying about who will be the next host of Hollywood’s biggest night!

When MacFarlane stated that he would never return to host the Oscars, many began to consider who would take on the heavy task of hosting the award show.

When people began to speculate that SNL alumni Tina Fey and Amy Poehler would try to host the telecast, Fey said that she would be honored to be asked but had no real interest in being a hostess for Hollywood’s biggest night. Thank goodness! Fey and Poehler did well as Golden Globe awards hosts, but they lack the prestige that the Oscars demands. Both actresses have had lead roles in films, but nothing that has earned them any real traction in the world of cinema. Sometimes you are meant to stay on TV; the sooner Fey and Poehler learn this the better.

Somebody who has gained a lot of respect from her peers is the fabulous young starlet Emma Stone who has wowed audiences from films such as The Help, Easy A, or Super-bad. Stone could easily be the hostess with the mostess. A good companion for Stone would be another young starlet who has not only been praised by her peers but the the Academy herself.  Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence has shown her class, charm, and humor in various films such as The Silver Linings Playbook, Winters Bone, and The Hunger Games. They would be able to keep the youthful viewers MacFarlane was able to bring in while maintaining the class of the Oscars. I’ve got to say I totally ship this host pairing.

 

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by Alexa Duplisea

Secret Life of the American Teenager

How many people can be pregnant or have a kid in one show? Well, Secret Life of The American Teenager upstaged Teen Mom and 16 and Pregnant for being the show with the most pregnancies. So far on the show there have been at least six pregnancies. This show’s main focus is teen pregnancies, and it is really not something I want to watch every week.

At the end of every show, they have their own Public Service Announcement educating teens about pregnancies. So, why does it feel like in the show they are promoting pregnancy? They make the lives of these teen moms seem less difficult than they are in real life, and it can give teenage girls the wrong impression about teen pregnancies.

In this episode, Amy, played by Shailene Woodly, is getting married to the father of her child, and she has recently picked out a wedding dress. Unfortunately, it is ugly, and none of her friends and family like it. So yes, this episode is not focused on pregnancy, but too bad because it’s still not interesting.

All the family and friends of Amy and Ricky do not feel that the two teens should be getting married just because they have a child together, but none of them speak up about it to the couple. Throughout the show Amy shows the dress to everyone she knows and gets the same reaction: they hate it. The only thing that got my attention in the show was wanting to find out what the dress would look like after she fixed it up, but it wasn’t shown in this episode and I don’t care enough to continue watching the series.

This show has been on ABC Family for five seasons, and they are currently on their last season. Most of the girls on this show are in high school and at some point have been pregnant, which really makes me mad! Are they trying to promote girls in high school getting pregnant? I sure hope not, but that is what it seems like. Amy and Ricky are planning on getting married, and they already have a kid. Although they have their differences, they are a happy couple, which might give teens the impression that it is okay to get pregnant and get married in high school.

I have one confession. I used to watch this show when it first started, and I was obsessed. There was always some drama going on, but in the last few seasons all that happens is someone new gets pregnant. Who cares?! Nobody wants to watch a show where all the girls in one high school get pregnant, and all they talk about is sex! Not appropriate for a channel named ABC “FAMILY.” Not at all a family show. My rating for this show is 1 out of 5 stars.

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Audience Age/Rating: Rated PG-13 for sexual humor, language and comic violence

Genre: Comedy

Director: Adam McKay

The movie is relatively old, coming out in 2003, but it is considered one of the greatest comedies ever in most people’s eyes, if not the greatest.

by Joe Frias

Will Ferrell stars as Ron Burgundy, San Diego’s top rated newsman of the 1970s. However, that’s all about to change when a new female employee (Christina Applegate) arrives in his office.

Will Ferrell is part of a comedic group of actors known as the Frat Pack. The Frat Pack also includes Ben Stiller, Jack Black, Owen Wilson, Luke Wilson, Vince Vaughn, and Steve Carell. This movie includes many of these comedy greats, such as Jack Black, Luke Wilson, Vince Vaughn, and Steve Carell.

This movie can make anyone laugh from the opening credits to the end of the film. In the very first scene, I died laughing when the narrator said, “This film is based off a true story. Only the people, places, and events have been changed.”  Scenes like this make the movie great because they are so outrageous. It seems as if every scene something out of the ordinary happens, and they all come together to not only make a really funny movie, but a great movie in general.  These are a few examples of the many, many events in this movie that will make you holler with laughter.

The comedy in this movie is very outrageous comedy. Every scene, the unexpected occurs. There was one scene when Ron Burgundy and the rest of his news team were walking to the suit store. They were stopped by their rival news team. Not long after there is an all out fight between five different news teams. It all happens so fast, and it catches people off guard. It makes for a very funny and very outrageous film.

However, there are a few minor mistakes in this movie. When Ron reads the teleprompter with the question mark on it, it is revealed that the words on the prompter don’t match the words that Ron said. This is clearly a mistake, since it is well-established that Ron will read anything that is put on the teleprompter. Also, directly following the “Panda Watch day #5” report, as Ron Burgundy is reading his sign-off from the teleprompter, the words do not match, defeating the point that he can’t change the words from the teleprompter. It is not a huge mistake, but I noticed it, and I am sure other people have as well.

If you want to kick back and relax and watch a funny movie, this is the movie for you. A movie night with this movie is a recipe for success. The highly anticipated sequel will be coming out December 20.

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by John McLean

A major daytime shake up happened earlier this month at The View when longtime cohost Joy Behar declared she would be leaving the daytime staple after sixteen years. And then rumors continued to spin out of control when reports that creator and cohost Barbara Walters would be retiring and cohost for almost a decade Elisabeth Hasselbeck would be kicked out of her chair because of her right wing ideology. Both of those reports turned out to be false.

But now all of the “who’s in, who’s out” drama has switched to the late night circuit. After Jimmy Kimmel Live! moved forward in its time slot to 11:30 p.m. on ABC, it is reported that NBC,who repeatedly garners low ratings, was becoming increasingly concerned about how Jay Leno, the host of The Tonight Show, would be able to hold up in the ratings war against Kimmel, who has a younger audience. Somebody who does have a younger audience and is reported to be replacing Leno in 2014 is the acclaimed SNL vet Jimmy Fallon, the host of his own show on NBC after Leno.

Could Leno be out, and could Fallon be in? Reports are unclear, and NBC executives are staying silent on the subject. Every day a new report comes out, and nobody is doing anything to put the rumors to rest.

Leno isn’t helping himself because he has been making a series of jokes about his bosses at NBC, which aren’t sitting well with the executives.

If the rumors are true, NBC could finally start becoming a contender in the late night circuit once more. Fallon is young and brings a more diverse audience. Placing him at an earlier time slot would only widen the number of viewers who tune in to see him host. Also Fallen is more irreverent than Leno, but he is also able to stay clean as far as his jokes are concerned. When Fallon takes Leno’s chair, Kimmel better watch out.

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Degrassi

by Alexa Duplisea

Sometimes high school can be tough, but imagine if you went to Degrassi. Degrassi, which airs on Friday nights at 9 p.m. on Teennick, focuses on a group of teens that all go to Degrassi High. Everything that could possibly happen to teens in high school, happens in this show. There are pregnancies , people coming out, couples having to deal with bad relationships and hard breakups, students commiting suicide and much more. Since it is based around teens, a lot of kids can relate to it.

Each character has something in their life they are dealing with. Whenever something happens in the show, they make it a really big deal involving many of the characters.

Recently a boy named Campbell Saunders committed suicide at school. He could not handle the separation from his family and the pressure to be the best on his hockey team. Campbell played hockey for the Ice Hounds and attended Degrassi, but he had to live with another family because his real family lived too far from the school and ice rink.

Even though this show is fiction, it’s so relatable that it makes me cry, not lying. All the problems in the show that the students deal with are real tear jerkers. Like the problems that Eli is dealing with.

This event especially affected Eli Goldsworthy. Eli has had past troubles with bipolar illness, but after being the person to find Campbell’s dead body at the school, he has been having trouble concentrating and staying calm. To cope with his problems, he turns to drugs. Munro Chambers, the actor who plays Eli, does an amazing job showing his rough-edged, dark personality and the life that he has.

Each actor or actress in the show does an outstanding job playing their character. Sometimes, when I hear about the actors in real life, all I can picture is their character in this show.

Fun fact: Degrassi has been airing TV shows for 25 years! Besides maybe Spongebob Squarepants, I have never heard of a show that’s been on television for that long. Throughout the years this show has changed; characters have come and gone. The school has been through so much, but it is still focused around the lives of the kids that attend Degrassi. Only a great show can last that long and still be a favored by teens all over the U.S.

This show deserves nothing less than five stars. Degrassi may not be made for adults or young kids, but it is a great show for teenagers.

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by Alexa Duplisea


Suburgatory

Before I watched the show, I was hesitant to believe what people say about liking it. First off, I do not get the title of the show. What does suburgatory mean? I do not understand the title except for the fact that it is based in the suburbs. What does “suburgatory” mean, and how does it tie to the show? Is it a mix of suburbia and purgatory, a place of suffering and hell in the suburbs? They should explain that, so people like me will understand it. If the title is unclear and not understandable would the show be too? That was a concern of mine.

But that is why people say not to be so quick to judge, and they are right. After watching the show I actually enjoyed it a lot. Even though the show’s idea about living in the suburbs wasn’t too funny, the characters in the show were. Suburgatory was just about regular people’s lives, specifically the main characters Tessa and George, and in their daily lives something new always happens and that’s what each show is about. Besides the fact that someone dies in the show, what is supposed to grab the viewer’s attention? I did not find much to be honest.

While watching, there was not one story going on but two, and it was frustrating to watch at points. This show switched back and forth between Tessa and George Altman’s lives, and throughout the whole episode they never came in contact with each other, which I found strange because they live together. Throughout the show Tessa narrates it even when George’s day is being shown. Maybe she narrates the show because it’s about her view on her life in the suburbs and her family.

There was, however, one part in the show that grabbed my attention. At the beginning of the show George and his friend Noah are at a country club in a sauna with a 90-year-old man named Marty. George gets to know him a little bit; then irony hits. Marty explains that he has never been outside of the suburbs of Chatswin and that he has plans to travel soon. “The best years of my life are ahead of me,” he says. Then he dies in the sauna from a stroke.

Not only is George having a rough day, but so is Tessa. She has recently found out that her boyfriend Ryan has been lying to her about what he has been up to. Wow, how original! A boyfriend lying. After freaking out on Ryan because she thought he was cheating on her, Tessa finds out that colleges are pursuing him. Her mind set instantly changes, and she is no longer mad at him but sad that he has been thinking about a future without her.

Throughout the show Tessa worries about the future she may or may not have with Ryan, but what she doesn’t know is that Ryan is worrying about the same thing. When Ryan confronts her about the situation, he tells Tessa he has a plan to stay with her and not go to college, and Tessa really starts to worry, “Ryan did you do something stupid?” Ryan responds, “I think we both know the answer to that.” The show portrays Ryan as a really dumb, but hot kid, and he thinks that too. Luckily Tessa fixes the issue and tells Ryan to go to college, and they will be fine. Even though Tessa and Ryan are okay, George is still having trouble with the death of Marty, even though he barely knew him.

George decides to go to Marty’s funeral along with eight other people from the club. At the end of the funeral, a country club employee gives George Marty’s ashes. This man tells George, “Of all people that didn’t know Marty, you didn’t know him the least.” It is sad but funny that nobody knew this man, and they gave his ashes to George who just met him. Luckily, George did find out that Marty wanted to travel outside Chatswin and decided to spread his ashes right beyond the border of that town.

My favorite characters in the show were Ryan and George’s friend, Noah. They were the funniest characters in the show, since Ryan is a complete dunce, thinking his hot body is a curse. Also when Noah, George’s best friend, was trying to give a speech at Marty’s funeral, he started describing events at the country club’s pool, and then he abruptly announced, “Speaking of strokes, Marty’s dead.”

This show deserves a three out of five stars. While watching the show I really enjoyed it, but when it ended I wasn’t like “OMG I have to watch this again!” This show will not be going on my regular television schedule.

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Modern Family

by Alexa Duplisea

The show focuses on three families, each with a different lifestyle but all odd. In this show the main focus is on the first family Claire, Phil, Luke, Alex and Hailey. Gloria, Jay, Manny and new baby boy are the second family, and lastly Mitchell, Cameron and their adopted daughter Lily are the third family. When I watched the show Modern Family, airing on ABC at 9 p.m. on Wednesday nights, I spent that half hour of my life laughing at their personalities and their quirks.

This show has won an Emmy for “Outstanding Comedy Series” three years in a row now. The award is well deserved because this show is beyond funny. It won that award because it makes it seem like the “Modern Family” is awkward and odd.

With the first family, Phil completes that group; he is a hilarious, lively character. He thinks of himself as a “cool dad” or a “sexually appealing” man and thinks he can always woo his wife. During this episode he tries to woo his wife Claire by using some pick up lines on her. When they are at dinner, he walks in to see Claire, and he asks, “‘Question, did it hurt when you fell from heaven cuz you fell’………I’m gonna come in again.” While trying to say the pick up line, he messes it up, making a fool of himself. He is always funny when he tries to be serious. Then at one point Claire passed out as he was getting excited for their plan packed night. When Phil brings Claire to the hospital, he feels that he was the reason she passed out. “Doctor, this might have been my fault. I think I might have been too sexy.”

In the Valentine’s Day special so much happened that kept the show funny and entertaining. Most characters tried to turn on the charm. They thought they had but ended up acting or saying something to make a fool of themselves. Especially Phil who is so certain his “sexiness” is a problem.

This show is definitely not for younger kids; it contains a lot of adult humor. For this Valentine’s Day special, most of the show was located in bedrooms before bed, as the couples tried to be romantic. Though it was really funny, the title “Modern Family” should not give the impression that this is a family show.

This is one of those shows that as long as someone knows the characters and the idea of the show, they do not have to follow along every week. The shows do not continue on and link together much, so if a viewer misses a show or a few shows he or she can still start watching it again and be able to enjoy it and its comedy. I would rate this show a 4 out of 5 because I really did enjoy watching it, and I do think I will watch it again. One problem that I had though is it is only a 20 minute show if all commercials were taken out.

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by Joe Frias

Audience Age/Rating: Rated R for violence and language

Genre: Action, Crime, Thriller

Director: John Moore

A Good Day to Die Hard is the fifth movie in the beloved Die Hard series. Bruce Willis once again takes the role of John McClane, the main protagonist. However, this movie seems to fall short of expectations compared to the previous four  movies.

In this movie, John McClane (Willis) learns that his son Jack (Courtney), whom he hasn’t spoken to in years, has been arrested for killing someone. McClane also learns that his son is a  highly trained CIA operative out to stop a nuclear weapon heist. With the Russian underworld in pursuit, the two McClanes discover that their opposing methods make them unstoppable heroes.

For starters, the movie has no big stars, other than Bruce Willis, which is unlike all the other movies. The Die Hard series has featured the likes of Samuel L. Jackson, among others. Also, this is the first Die Hard movie not to take place in the US. This one takes place in Russia.

One of the bigger problems I have had with this movie is major plot holes. In one scene, McClane and his son survive a gas explosion, unscathed, merely by ducking behind some stone pillars. Also, the enemies had all this high tech equipment and armor while John and Jack McClane were in just everyday clothes.

At one point, the father-son duo go to Chernobyl. The director could have used this famous setting to create a sense of eeriness. Chernobyl is home to the worst nuclear disaster in history. When I was watching this movie, to me it didn’t feel like that was Chernobyl. Chernobyl today is still largely off-limits, not to mention extremely dangerous, and I didn’t get that dangerous feeling in the film. The characters could have gotten radiation poisoning, and I feel that they really missed out on a great opportunity by not putting something of that nature into the film, especially since the protagonists are just walking around in shirt and pants while the antagonists have high tech equipment and armor, as I said above.

With that being said, this movie has great action scenes. With explosions, shots being fired, and high speed car chases, this movie will not keep you bored. And for a little trivia about the movie, this is the fourth of the five movies to feature an exploding helicopter. All five, however, have an exploding aircraft.

If you are a fan of the series, or if you like a good action movie, I do recommend going to see this movie. However, do not expect to see a great Die Hard film.

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by John McLean

 

The SAG Awards: Best Actress

Once again Jennifer Lawrence (or as her fans have lovingly started calling her J. Law) continued to gain critical praise for her role as Tiffany in The Silver Linings Playbook, which in in theaters now. She costars with Bradley Cooper. The starlet gave a light and comical acceptance speech in which she mentioned a series of commercials she filmed when she was fourteen for MTV’s My Super Sweet Sixteen.

In case you haven’t made your way to the theater to see Silver Linings, you must do so ASAP! The film deals with the complex and often dramatic subject of mental illness in a lighthearted comedy that never feels forced, dishonest, or sappy. Cooper and Lawrence have an undeniable chemistry as two people who have both struggled and are now trying to reclaim control and find the silver linings in their lives. I’m willing to predict the actress will win her first Academy Award. The depth to which Lawrence takes her role is more than just the quirky and typical dysfunction we see actresses bring to film screens every day. Lawrence’s realism as Tiffany is one that has been missing from mainstream Hollywood flicks for a long time.

Killing Me Softly with Tina Fey….

Four for Glenn Coco and none for Mean Girls: The Musical! Tina Fey, who wrote, directed and acted in Mean Girls, is now working with her husband, the composer of 30 Rock, Fey’s television show, to create a musical version of the pop culture phenomenon Mean Girls. Why? That is the only thing that I have to say. Mean Girls has become a modern day classic. Everybody knows the film. Making a musical will only taint the legacy of the film. To me it seems that all Mean Girls: The Musical is to Fey is a quick way to make cheap cash with the fact that 30 Rock is going off the air and Fey is now unemployed.

Sugar Spice and Everything Nice, The Powerpuff Girls are back!

Talk about childhood nostalgia. The pint-sized superheroes are coming back to Cartoon Network – reportedly later this year – and all of the original voice actors are set to return. The girls will also reunite with a former Beatle. Ringo Starr will be singing an original song for the special “I Wish I Was A Powerpuff Girl.” Sophomore Leia Owen felt that “it’s kind of gross. It’s bizarre that Ringo Starr would even involve himself in it!” I couldn’t have said it better myself. The show has become an icon in animated television, and I don’t see why they would try to recreate a series that has already ended. After all, the Powerpuff Girls didn’t end because of low viewership. Let’s hope that for the sake of our childhoods we can come out of this event saying, “And once again the day was saved, thanks to the POWERPUFF GIRLS!”