Weekend Movies: Sayonara, Summer!

Hey, did you know the days have been getting shorter for nearly a week now? Crazy, right?! (I’ll, uh, show myself out. Here are some cool movies.)

 

Soon.

 

Behemoth Friday, June 28, 6pm ET

Arctic Blast Friday, June 28, 8pm ET

Surrogates Friday, June 28, 11:15pm, plus Saturday, June 29, 2:30am and 2pm ET

Ring of Fire Part 1 of 2 (MOW)Saturday, June 29, 10am and 6pm ET

Underworld: Rise of the LycansSaturday, June 29, 12pm and 4pm, plus Sunday, June 30, 12:30am

Ring of Fire Part 2 of 2 (MOW)Saturday, June 29, 8pm, plus Sunday, June 30, 10am ET

Wanted Saturday, June 29, 10pm, plus Sunday, June 30, 2:30am ET

The Da Vinci CodeSunday, June 30, 12pm ET

Angels & Demons Sunday, June 30, 3pm ET

 

Surrogates

The cast: Bruce Willis, Radha Mitchell, Rosamund Pike

The Showcase synopsis: “Set in a futuristic world where humans live in isolation and interact through surrogate robots, a cop is forced to leave his home for the first time in years to investigate the murders of other surrogates.”

 

Dude, did you just read that description? Surrogates is like Avatar before Avatar (it was release three months earlier). And like The Matrix after The Matrix (it was, uh, released ten years later). Point being, I love sci-fi that messes with your head, and you can bet your French toast Surrogates does that like nobody’s bidness. Plus, how often do you get to see cops going up against a bunch of robots? Okay, well, besides I, Robot. But whatever – the androids in this movie are way hotter.

 

Her robo-spine was thicker until ‘Surrogate Cosmo’ broke out the ol’ PhotoShop. 

 

Ring of Fire

The cast: Michael Vartan, Terry O’Quinn, Ian Tracey

The Showcase synopsis: “When an oil rig causes a volcanic eruption in a small town, it’s just the first in a trigger effect – called the Ring of Fire – that stretches across the globe. If these cataclysmic series of eruptions cannot be stopped, Earth will be swallowed whole.”

 

That’s right: parts 1 and 2 – back to flippin’ back, baby! It’s volcano fire versus Earth, and you know what? My money’s on the volcano fire. I feel like it’s due. Plus, Earth has had a pretty good run, all things considered. If we’re gonna go out, it may as well be with some End of Days-style razzle-dazzle. As ol’ Neil Young famously sang, “it’s better to go out with a lava-induced seismic bang than fade away.”

 

Perhaps these humans of varying sizes can be of assistance.

 

Underworld: Rise of the Lycans

The cast: Michael Sheen, Bill Nighy, Rhona Mitra

The Showcase synopsis: “An origins story centered on the centuries-old feud between the race of aristocratic vampires and their onetime slaves, the Lycans.”

 

A haiku about this great film:

 

Rise of the Lycans

Stars Rhona Mitra who was

On ‘Party of Five’

 

Need I say more?

 

“I know something you don’t know. I am not left handed.”

 

Wanted

The cast: Angelina Jolie, James McAvoy, Morgan Freeman

The Showcase synopsis: “A frustrated office worker learns he’s the son of a professional assassin, and that he shares his father’s superhuman killing abilities.”

 

My dad was a military paratrooper, master carpenter, and chess genius. And unlike the uber-cool father/son dynamic in this film, none of these abilities passed down to me. Why? Because genetics are a fickle b*tch, hombre.

The film that launched Angie’s unforgettable catchphrase: “Imma shoot you in the face!”

 

The Da Vinci Code

The cast: Tom Hanks, Jean Reno, Audrey Tautou, Alfred Molina

The Showcase synopsis: “A murder inside the Louvre and clues in Da Vinci paintings lead to the discovery of a religious mystery protected by a secret society for two thousand years – which could shake the foundations of Christianity.”

 

Spoiler alert: it’s the same as my ATM code: ‘1-2-3-4.’

 

 

Apologies to Audrey Tautou’s lower face: I needed to make room for the Mona Lisa.

 

Angels & Demons

The cast: Tom Hanks, Ewan McGregor, Ayelet Zurer

The Showcase synopsis: “Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon works to solve a murder and prevent a terrorist act against the Vatican.”

 

Ron Howard directed this taut nail-biter of a flick. The only thing that could have made it better? Some Ron Howard-style narration à la Arrested Development. An example:

 

ROBERT LANGDON: We have to reach the third church and stop Cardinal Guidera from being burned to death!

 

NARRATOR: Theyyyyy didn’t.

The angel on the left is all, “Robert, don’t eat the chocolate cake – think of your diet!” And the demon on the right is all, “Screw the diet, take a big bite!” 

Defiance: Things You NeedWant To Know About “The Bride Wore Black”

If you have not yet watched the episode you can do so online here. Here, we lay out the facts you need to know in order to keep up with the series, and also the intriguing details you want to know that make Defiance what it is. This is a NeedWant list for episode 110 “The Bride Wore Black.”

Hunter Bell is found! Dead.

During a fight that breaks out at Alak’s seedy Castithan bachelor party (which is surprisingly close to what a traditional human bachelor party might be) a wall is busted and a corpse is found inside. It is the corpse of long missing NeedWant owner Hunter Bell. The discovery sends the town into a tailspin and Nolan, initially uninterested in digging up old dirt, is forced to investigate the case when bartender Jerrod is found dead in his camper. It is through a series of flashbacks that the murderer is revealed alongside a wealth of new/old information about Defiance and its inhabitants.

Evil Ex Mayor Nicky is Not Human

Nicky walks into Yewll’s office hoping the Doc has changed her mind about their former partnership and we get a flashback to her walking into Yewll’s office seven years prior. In the flashback, Hunter walks in on Yewll examining Nicky and it is clear that she is NOT a human, but a genetically altered Indogene. Indogenes are so sneaky! When Hunter asks for $100 000 to keep his mouth shut, Nicky shuts it for him and murders him with her staff. Unfortunately Jerrod was there to witness the entire thing and that is why Nicky murdered him in present day. Doc Yewll has had enough of Nicky’s murderous shenanigans and injects her with a paralyzing serum and lets her know that she is not on board—not with the murder of Jerrod or anything else she might have in store for the genocidal weapon. It is then that Doc Yewll kills Nicky, fakes her suicide and puts the golden artifact into hiding…”for the greater good.”

Rafe Once Saved Datak’s Life

Datak was a scrappy streetrat and back in the day when he was looking to advance his position of power he went to Hunter, who forced him to fight for it. Hunter, an unfair fighter was wielding a knife at an already stabbed Datak for the win when Rafe stepped in and saved Datak’s life. The two bonded in that moment and had a drink together over their mutual dislike for Hunter Bell. With Hunter Bell now out of the picture, the two no longer have a common ground, unless you count their common interest in Rafe’s mines for which Datak plans to take control of if voted in as mayor.

The Castithan-Human Wedding Is a Go!

There was some back and forth on whether or not this wedding would actually happen. When Datak finds out that Rafe has no intentions of willing the mines to Christie, Datak sees no reason to proceed with the ceremony. It is Stahma that manages to keep the peace between the Humans and Castithans and out of her love for son and excitement about her new “heart daughter” she convinces Datak to allow the wedding to proceed. She is able to easily manipulate Datak, and even lies to him when Christie appears wearing an “old world bridal veil” rather than the traditional Telo she had originally presented Christie to wear. The wedding is a beautiful merging of cultures and everyone in town seems happy to see the two kids hitched. Even Irisa attends!

While On The Subject of Marriage:
The subject of marriage has been referenced often enough throughout the season. A terraformed planet and some Votans does not change that fact that the culture of marriage is vast and with many varying opinions surrounding it.  A quick roundup of ‘opinions on marriage’ is as follows: Nolan is a one woman man who believes in the sanctity of marriage, while Amanda likes the idea of Polyandry and having multiple men to take care of her needs. In the old world, Kenya believed in marriage and fought for hers, but nowadays, is married to her business and its success. Datak believes in Castithan marriages and is not interested in what goes on in any other culture, while Stahma, a traditional Castithan wife, is open to Human/Votan marriages and is interested in other cultural traditions. Irisa doesn’t date and thinks that “weddings are stupid” while Tommy sees them as an excuse to party and is a romantic at heart. Rafe believes in marriage until the illness of the one he married takes over and he is forced to send her away for trying to murder his children.

Next week its election time! Who will win the Mayoral race in Defiance?! Find out in “Past is Prologue” on Sunday, July 1st at 10pm et/pt

Weekend Movies: Sand Serpents, Swarms, Silver Surfers, and Sherlocks

Descent Friday, June 21, 6pm ET
Swarmed Friday, June 21, 8pm ET
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines Fri, June 21, 11:15pm; Sat, June 22, 3am ET
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon EmperorSaturday, June 22, 10am & 3:30pm ET
Batman BeginsSaturday, June 22, 12:30pm & 10pm; Sunday, June 23, 12pm ET
Carny (MOW) Saturday, June 22, 6pm ET
Sand Serpents (MOW) Saturday, June 22, 8pm ET
Sherlock HolmesSunday, June 23, 1am and 3pm ET
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver SurferSunday, June 23, 4am and 10am ET


Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines
The cast:
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Nick Stahl, Claire Danes
The Showcase synopsis: “Nearly a decade after Skynet sent back the T-1000, John Connor faces a female Terminator, the T-X, with power over all machines. But John has another protector: a new T-800 unit Terminator.”

I like this movie. Quite a bit, actually. It’s far enough away from the 1980s-era bad hair / wardrobe / music / special effects that plagued the first Terminator. And it forgoes the sappy “Gee, how do I become more human, John Connor?” schlock that eroded the second installment. In Terminator 3, the CGI is sweet, Schwarzenegger is badass once again, and the ending actually delivers on something the other flicks didn’t have the cojones to do. Bonus: far less reliance on heavy-handed catchphrases.
“Your situation is very GRAVE!” – a line we won’t be hearing.


The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
The cast:
Brendan Fraser, Jet Li, Maria Bello
The Showcase synopsis: “In the Far East, Alex O’Connell, the son of famed mummy fighters Rick and Evy O’Connell, unearths the mummy of the first Emperor of Qin – a shape-shifting entity cursed by a witch centuries ago.”

Question: what’s the one constant in all action franchises starring ruggedly handsome adventurers who fight supernatural bad guys in the Middle East during the 1930s and ‘40s? Answer: the adventurer’s gonna have a son who eventually gets thrown into the mix. It happens in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, and it happens here in The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. A risky move, admittedly. After all, expanding the ol’ brood can have devastating effects on TV sitcoms (Cousin Oliver’s late-series stint on The Brady Bunch, anyone?). But as far as this film is concerned, you’ve got nothing to worry about. The kid knows his stuff, and his mummy-thwarting skills are bested by no man.

They’re only 2 mummy kills away from a free mocha grande at Starbucks (participating locations only, some conditions apply). 


Batman Begins
The cast: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Liam Neeson, Gary Oldman
The Showcase synopsis: “After training with his mentor, Batman begins his war on crime to free Gotham City from corruption.”

This movie has no Joker, Riddler, Two-Face, Penguin, Mad Hatter, Doctor Death, Killer Croc, Egghead, Doctor Dark, Madame Zodiac, Sewer King, Atomic-Man, Bane, King Cobra, Professor Strange, Catwoman, Monarch of Menace, Humpty Dumpty, Clayface, or Solomon Grundy. Batman fights mobsters. Plain old mobsters. And it’s awesome.

“With your AccuWeather forecast, I’m the Dark Knight – now back to Rick and Julie in the studio.” 


Sand Serpents
(MOW)
The cast:
Jason Gedrick, Tamara Hope, Elias Toufexis
The Showcase synopsis: “A group of American combat soldiers trapped in the Afghanistan desert must battle the Taliban and a horde of giant carnivorous worm-like serpents awakened from under the earth.”

It’s like a pretty good Tremors. What are you, a stuck-up film major? No, so sit down and watch it.

Due Monday: a 2500-word paper on the film’s exploration of contemporary iconoclasm.


Sherlock Holmes
The cast:
Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Rachel McAdams
The Showcase synopsis: “Detective Sherlock Holmes and his stalwart partner Watson engage in a battle of wits and brawn with a nemesis whose plot is a threat to all of England.”

Sometimes Iron Man solves mysteries in Victorian-era London. No biggie.

Hats: totally a thing back then.  


Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
The cast:
Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis, Julian McMahon
The Showcase synopsis: “Marvel’s first family of superheroes, the Fantastic Four, meets its greatest challenge yet when intergalactic herald the Silver Surfer comes to Earth to prepare it for destruction.”

Despite his moniker, the Silver Surfer doesn’t wear Bermuda shorts. Nor does he call everybody “bro.” He surfs in a space alien kinda way, which is far more complex and sophisticated than most of us could ever fully grasp. He also doesn’t surf to escape the stressors of his day job. Surfing IS his day job, and it’s serious stuff. Especially when the Earth is about to get swallowed by a giant planet-eating monster. Which it totally is, by the way.

Above: the Silver Surfer, totally not hanging 10, bro.   

Defiance: Things You NeedWant To Know About “If I Leave This World Alive”

If you have not yet watched the episode you can do so online here. Here, we lay out the facts you need to know in order to keep up with the series, and also the intriguing details you want to know that make Defiance what it is. This is a NeedWant list for episode 109 “If I Leave This World Alive.”


The Irath Plague Wreaks Havoc in Defiance

The issue at the heart of this week’s episode is one of race and when the “Irath plague” hits Defiance, tensions between the varying races hits a high note. The Irath flu is rampant and while both humans and Irathients carry the contagion, only humans have symptoms of the illness and are affected by it. When the humans begin to drop like flies Doc Yewll secures a cure from San Francisco which Connor and Nolan have to pick up from the Badlands. To pursue his agenda of ridding the town of “unclean” Votans, Datak proposes a vote to quarantine the Irathient population in the mines. Needless to say the Irathient’s are pissed and not so distant memories of having been gathered up and gassed by Castis surface when they are locked up behind bars. Connor and Nolan manage to bypass the E-Rep quarantine barricade to get the medication, but once back in the city, a group of Irathients take them hostage and demand the release of their people before handing the medication over.


Datak. Wow.

Stahma intercept’s Nolan’s urgent call to the mayor as Amanda is now ill, and declares her husband, Datak to be the one in charge. Upon hearing of the medicinal hostage situation, Datak meets their demands releasing the Irathients, and heads over to free up the plague cure. This is when things get a little crazy. Datak, in a double-cross move pours gasoline all over the medicine, threatening to destroy it and has his minions wipe out all of the Irathients. Save for one who gets Datak in a chokehold and demands he beg for his life. With Connor’s help, he manages to get the upper hand goes ballistic on her, overkills her, and then shoots Connor in the head for having witnessed the entire scene. He spares an unconscious Nolan, claiming that they can’t have two accidental human casualties to have to explain. He makes it look like Connor’s death was at the hands of the Irathients and brings the cure to the people, effectively becoming the town’s hero. It is on this momentum that he seizes the opportunity to announce his mayoral candidacy.


Quentin Makes a Move

In the midst of plague mayhem, Quentin takes Nicki up on her offer of information regarding his mother Pilar’s death. He brings the artifact to Nicki and in return she explains that when the world fell apart they stopped making his mother’s much needed bi-polar medicine. This made Rafe desperate and he struck a deal with Datak who helped keep Pilar on the straight and narrow with old world Lithium. Over time, growing immune to the the medicine, Pilar’s condition worsened  and when one day she was found buttering the kids’ toast with rat poison Nicki intervened. NIcki and Rafe had been having an affair, and she convinced him of the potential hazards of having Pilar around. Nicki and Rafe’s relationship did not survive, but Pilar did and was sent away. Nicki takes Quentin’s key card and he packs up and leaves Defiance in search of his long lost mother.


Connor Opens Up to Nolan
On their way to get the cure, in an attempt at small talk, Nolan gets super nosy about Connor and Amanda’s past. Connor opens up and speaks about when they were together. It was for about 3 years and he loved her very much, but when they found out they were pregnant, she freaked out and aborted the pregnancy without telling him.


Doc Yewll and Evil Nicky Were Once in Cahoots

Doc and Nicki meet in a car and we find out that they had worked together in the past. It would seem that Doc left the group when Nicki and BIrch got a little too crazy and evil. When Nicki reveals that she got her hands on the golden artifact, Doc tells her to destroy it  becuase of its destructive capabilites noting that it will either reshape or destroy the planet.  Nicki points out that you can’t have one without the other. Ominous.

New episode “The Bride Wore Black” airs Monday, June 24th at 10pm et/pt.

Continuum S2 blog #8: Day of the Detente

If you could travel to the past for a chance to save the future, would you risk leaving behind your life, your family, your future? Law enforcer Kiera Cameron wasn’t even given a choice in the year 2077, when a conspiracy sent her over six decades back in time to track down a cell of terrorist/anarchist temporal fugitives. In modern-day Vancouver, she’s doing her job and maintaining her cover while holding out hope that she can eventually get home — assuming the home she knew still exists. Minute by minute and day by day, Kiera’s learning that the only time she can trust anyone is now, and it might not be a question of how her dystopian adventure ends so much as when.

——————–

The danger inherent in a detente — a temporary ceasefire, sometimes pact, between opposing, usually warring, sides — come to a head in this week’s episode of Continuum S2, “Second Listen” (it aired last night: watch it HERE). Typical of Continuum, there are now two detentes to potentially backfire…

First up: Kiera and Gardiner. These two are not exactly nemeses but neither trusts the other, and it’s been fascinating watching them team up to get to the bottom of some curious bodysnatching incidents (well, not so curious for Kiera, as she knows that all of the bodies are of deceased time travellers). When Carlos reminds Kiera to be careful around Gardiner — fair enough: Carlos is not only her partner in the police force but also her new confidante — she points out that the current case (bodysnatching) is keeping Gardiner off of his previous case (Kiera herself). It’s actually one of the rare times that we see Kiera being manipulative, which does not come to her character naturally and is, of course, the reason she is a real hero. When her detente with Gardiner comes to a sudden and ugly end in this episode, there’s no doubt that Kiera will have regrets later on.

Next up: Jasmine and Future Alec. In one of those back-and-forth sequences that Continuum does so well, we see a conversation between the Liber8 henchman and the (my words) Master of the Future get unveiled in installments throughout the episode. Future Alec knows of Jasmine’s then-imminent time travel trip and asks her for a favour. It’s a doozy, and it’s also one laced in irony given that, before Future Alec can even ask the favour, Jasmine tries to kill him. The irony, of course, is that he asks her to kill him in the past. What ends up playing out in the past, in a three-way confrontation between Alec, Kiera and Jasmine that resolves in a new, albeit reluctant, detente, will have a profound impact on what happens in the rest of this season, to be sure.

Two asides. One: what a fantastic job this show does integrating visions of the future into modern-day Vancouver. The opening sequence in this particular episode involved a year-2077 flyover of portside downtown and it looked, for lack of a better word, realistic. Credible. Second: Interesting to see Continuum post an episode that questions the identity of Alec’s father on…Father’s Day. Intentional timing? Given the meticulous plotting of this show, my guess is yes.

SEE YOU NEXT EPISODE ON THE CONTINUUM BLOG!

Weekend Movies: Cops, Spies, Dukes, And Jovoviches

Those four words are the cornerstones of modern cinema. And they’re coming at you this weekend. Brace thyself!

 

Ogre – Friday, June 14, 6pm ET

Tasmanian Devil (MOW) Friday, June 14, 8pm ET

The Other Guys Friday, June 14, 11pm, plus Saturday, June 15, 2:30am and 1pm ET

The Dukes Of Hazzard – Saturday, June 15, 11am ET

Get Smart Saturday, June 15, 3:30pm, plus Sunday, June 16, 12am ET

Infected (MOW) Saturday, June 15, 6pm ET

Recoil (MOW) Saturday, June 15, 8pm ET

Bad Teacher Saturday, June 15 10pm, plus Sunday, June 16, 2:30am ET

Resident Evil: Extinction Sunday, June 16, 10am and 2pm ET

Resident Evil: Afterlife – Sunday, June 16, 12pm and 4pm ET

 

The Other Guys

The cast: Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, Derek Jeter

The Showcase synopsis: “Two mismatched New York City detectives seize an opportunity to step up like the city’s top cops (whom they idolize). Unfortunately things don’t go quite as planned.”

 

Is Mark Wahlberg always a cop in everything all the time always? You bet your ass. Ditto his brother Donnie – my man’s always playing a police officer. It’s simply the kind of role the Wahlberg boys were born to do. But who’d a thunk younger bro Mark would ever take on the role of a cop in a buddy comedy? Short answer: nobody. Well, until this film came along. Then we were all like, “Yeah man, that totes works!” And it does.

 

Dude! Steve freakin’ COOGAN is all up in this!

 

The Dukes Of Hazzard

The cast: Johnny Knoxville, Seann William Scott, Jessica Simpson

The Showcase synopsis: “Cousins Bo and Luke Duke, with a little help from their cousin Daisy and Uncle Jesse, egg on the authorities of Hazzard County.”

 

Gotta love the casting here: there’s Seann William Scott, the dude who plays Stifler in those movies where the guy has sex with the pie. And then there’s Johnny Knoxville, the dude who plays Johnny Knoxville in that show where Johnny Knoxville gets a bunch of concussions. Throw in a little Jessica Simpson and the moonshine practically smuggles itself across state lines!

 

At the risk of stereotyping, it looks like them Duke boys are up to no good again.

 

Get Smart

The cast: Steve Carell, Anne Hathaway, Alan Arkin

The Showcase synopsis: “Maxwell Smart, analyst for the secret spy agency CONTROL, alongside the experienced Agent 99, must prevent KAOS, an enemy agency from Russia, from bringing disaster to America.”

 

I loved the old Get Smart reruns when I was kid. And this flick makes the TV series look like something stuck to the bottom of my shoe. So draw your own conclusions. (This movie’s good, is my point.)

 

The pivotal scene where smart gets gotten.   

 

Bad Teacher

The cast: Cameron Diaz, Lucy Punch, Jason Segel

The Showcase synopsis: “A comedy centered on a foul-mouthed, junior high teacher who, after being dumped by her sugar daddy, begins to woo a colleague – a move that pits her against a well-loved teacher.”

 

This movie is kinda like Bad Santa, only with a sexy blond school teacher instead of Billy Bob Thornton in an ill-fitting St. Nick outfit. Otherwise, soooo similar, my friend. In an awesome way. To recap: Billy Bob is a bad Santa, Cameron Diaz is a bad teacher. Remember this rule of thumb and life is yours for the taking!

 

Above: not Santa.

 

Resident Evil: Extinction

The cast: Milla Jovovich, Oded Fehr, Mike Epps

The Showcase synopsis: “Survivors of the Raccoon City catastrophe travel across the Nevada desert, hoping to make it to Alaska. Alice joins the caravan and their fight against the evil Umbrella Corp.”

 

Whoaaaaa there, Showcase synopsis. You had me at “Raccoon City catastrophe.”

 

“Get out of my recycling bins!”

 

Resident Evil: Afterlife

The cast: Milla Jovovich, Ali Larter, Kim Coates

The Showcase synopsis: “While still out to destroy the evil Umbrella Corporation, Alice joins a group of survivors who want to relocate to the mysterious but supposedly unharmed safe haven known only as Arcadia.”

 

On the surface, the Umbrella Corporation sounds like a charming mom n’ pop operation dedicated to providing a welcome assortment of brollies, parasols, and bumbershoots. After all, even the most hardened survivalist doesn’t like getting caught in the rain (despite an enjoyment of pina coladas, ironically). In reality, the Umbrella Corporation is a sinister conglomerate that has little interest in a) inclement weather, and b) items designed to protect consumers from said weather. Is it any wonder Milla Jovovich wants to shoot them in the face?

 

Kind of her ‘go-to’ stance, I guess you could say. 

Broadchurch Brings the Bloody British Seaside to Showcase

Showcase adds drama to Canadian viewers’ summer television lineup with new British import Broadchurch. The critically acclaimed series stars David Tennant (Doctor Who) in a gripping, eight-part mystery premiering on Sunday, August 4 with new episodes airing every Sunday and Monday at 10pm ET/PT.

 

Garnering record ratings in the UK and described as “beautifully filmed, sharply directed” (Daily Mirror), Broadchurch was written and created by Chris Chibnall (Torchwood, Law and Order: UK). The chilling ensemble drama explores what happens to a small community after an 11-year-old, Danny Latimer (Oskar McNamara; Anna Karenina), is found dead on the idyllic Dorset, UK beach. The boy’s death puts the picturesque seaside town of Broadchurch into the heart of a major police investigation and a national media frenzy.

 

Tennant stars as Detective Inspector Alec Hardy, a new-to-town, newly promoted police detective partnered with local Detective Sergeant Ellie Miller (Olivia Colman; The Iron Lady, Peep Show) who have been assigned to investigate Danny’s death. With a personal tie to the case, Ellie must find reserves of patience and toughness to negotiate a professional relationship with the difficult and unyielding Hardy. Yet as the series progresses, Hardy’s own secrets are laid bare while his clinical methods force Ellie to see the community she grew up in through a different light.

 

Danny’s tragic and mysterious death causes a strain on the family he left behind: parents Beth (Jodie Whittaker; Attack the Block, One Day) and Mark Latimer (Andrew Buchan; Garrow’s Law), teenage sister Chloe (Charlotte Beaumont; 6 Bullets) and Beth’s mother Liz (Susan Brown; Game of Thrones, The Iron Lady). Devastated by their loss, it’s the most stressful and emotional time in their lives as they struggle to deal with everyday life and relate to their friends, neighbours, the church, the press and the police as one by one the residents of Broadchurch come under scrutiny and suspicion.

 

Broadchurch also stars Arthur Darvill (Doctor Who) as village vicar Paul Coates, Jonathan Bailey (Leonardo) as local newspaper reporter Olly Stevens, Carolyn Pickles (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1) as editor Maggie Radcliffe, Vicky McClure (Line of Duty) as a national journalist with a special interest in DI Hardy, and Simone McAullay (Home and Away), Will Mellor (In with the Flynns) and Pauline Quirke (Emmerdale Farm) as members of the community.

 

Broadchurch is directed by James Strong (United, Downton Abbey, Silent Witness, Doctor Who) and Euros Lyn (Torchwood, Doctor Who, Upstairs Downstairs, Sherlock) and produced by Richard Stokes (Silk, Law & Order: UK, Torchwood). Jane Featherstone (The Hour, Life on Mars, Law & Order: UK) and Chris Chibnall are the executive producers.

 

SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS:

Website: www.showcase.ca/broadchurch
Twitter: @showcasedotca
Facebook: facebook.com/showcasedotca

Defiance: Things you NeedWant to know about “I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times”

If you have not yet watched the episode you can do so online here. Here, we lay out the facts you need to know in order to keep up with the series, and also the intriguing details you want to know that make Defiance what it is. This is a NeedWant list for episode 108 “I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times.”


Indogenes played dirty in the Pale War

While on mission exploring the fallen ark, Nolan and Tommy happen upon a live human in “hypersleep”. It is through this man, a stranger to Defiance and the year 2046 that we get glimpse into what was the pale war that reshaped Earth. The stranger is Gregory McClintock, a famous commander revered for his work on the International Space Station that ceased to exist when the Votans arrived. In a flashback we find out he was captured, tortured and examined by Indogene doctors, and when he attempts to murder Amanda in her sleep, he is put into captivity. While behind bars Gregory throws himself against a wall, and starts bleeding silver, like an Indogene. It is then that Doc Yewll is forced to admit that Votans were studying humans before they made contact. Yewll explains that during the war, her species would abduct humans and use them to create Indogenes who were sleeper agents designed to kill humans in positions of power on Earth. Gregory struggles in dealing with the fact that he is an Indogene trapped in a Human body with fake Human memories. In the end he decides to fake his own death and he heads off to spend the remainder of his life with his aged wife.


E-Rep Ambassador Tennety wants Amanda gone

When Amanda’s ex boyfriend Connor returns to Defiance to offer her a swank NYC E-Rep job, her suspicions are aroused. When she turns down the job offer, he reveals that it was his attempt to “save” her, and that Ambassador Tennety, the E-Rep lady who attempted to kill Amanda in the desert is leading a campaign to oust Amanda from Defiance by any means possible, even if it means killing her. Amanda stands her ground in Defiance.


Rafe McCauley’s house is the most human of houses

In an effort to comfortably acclimatize their space hero, Nolan and Amanda bring Gregory to the most earthy home in Defiance. It is recognizable and homey and in complete contrast to that of fellow councilman Datak’s stark white Castithan home. The group gets blasted on scotch and they reminisce about the good ‘ol Earth days.


Kenya is a one woman/man, woman


We find out Kenya and Stahma are still sleeping together. We also find out that Kenya has turned away Datak’s business because she knows that servicing him hurts Stahma’s feelings. It’s a sweet and caring gesture that Stahma warns against continuing as it only makes Datak angry and suspicious. Remember when Kenya was sleeping with Nolan for free? Are we to assume that because she is now sleeping with Stahma for free that she is no longer sleeping with Nolan for free?


Connor and Mandy are not sitting in a tree k-i-s-s-i-n-g


Connor calls Amanda “Mandy” as a term of endearment and it makes her scoff. We find out that it was not his, but her issues that caused their breakup. He seems to genuinely care about and miss her, but his advances are met with some pretty solid resistance.


RPats is for girls

In their drunken haze, the Human gang muses about the Gregory McClintock book and movie and we find out that Robert Pattinson played him in the movie. The boys look to Amanda, the only female in the room to confirm whether not Rob Pattinson was a vampire or werewolf in the Twilight series.


Stay tuned because a plague is about to hit Defiance!
New episode “If I Ever Leave This World Alive” airs Monday, June 17th at 10pm et/pt.

 

 

Continuum S2 blog #7: Re. PRISMs and Reprisals

If you could travel to the past for a chance to save the future, would you risk leaving behind your life, your family, your future? Law enforcer Kiera Cameron wasn’t even given a choice in the year 2077, when a conspiracy sent her over six decades back in time to track down a cell of terrorist/anarchist temporal fugitives. In modern-day Vancouver, she’s doing her job and maintaining her cover while holding out hope that she can eventually get home — assuming the home she knew still exists. Minute by minute and day by day, Kiera’s learning that the only time she can trust anyone is now, and it might not be a question of how her dystopian adventure ends so much as when.

——————–

With all the news about the PRISM scandal that broke last week, I couldn’t resist but make a small reference in this week’s post title. Security agencies of any ilk would have a field day with the future tech that Kiera Cameron has imported back to 2013 in Continuum. Plus, while her reasons are typical moral/ethical, our heroine does contravene numerous privacy laws, on a per-episode basis.

Consider the harbour/boat scan sequence in this week’s episode of Continuum S2, “Second Degree” (it aired last night: watch it HERE). Here, Kiera and Alec — and, now “in on it,” Carlos — are deploying the future tech in order to save the life of a mother and daughter being held hostage in a jury-tampering situation. Noble work? Sure. The right reason? Well…sure (though, less sure). I’m not saying I think Kiera and co. did the wrong thing. I’m just saying it’s a bit eerie given the current headlines.

On the other hand, we have Agent Gardner, who also uses surveillance software to get information to help the case. The case in question is the disappearance of the dead bodies of time travellers (not that Gardner is aware that they were time travellers). Again, it’s both marvellous and off-putting watching someone use real surveillance software to track the movements of a person of suspicion. As we all know: Privacy in real-life 2013 is not so private anymore.

In any case, plenty of goodness (and not just moral/ethical) in this week’s episode. I particularly enjoyed the sequence where Kiera takes on a gaggle of badguys wearing her invisibility armour, directly flaunting the hardware in front of her partner, the still-getting-used-to-this-whole-”future”-thing Carlos. I suspect the writers will have a lot of fun with this relationship shift as the season progresses.

An event of even greater importance to Carlos being admitted to Kiera’s “future club,” though, is the character lesson that Alec learns the hard way, when he has to decide between lying or telling the truth in the trail of his step-brother, Julian (destined to become year-2077 Liber8 leader, Theseus). Sounds like Alec’s decision would be simple, right? Except that telling the truth will end up revealing that his mother perjured her testimony, and likely lead to her own arrest. It’s a very powerful moment when Alec decides to tell the truth regardless of the repercussions: He chooses the greater good. This bodes well for him in the future, both now and in 2077.

On the other hand, what are we to make of Theseus’s sentence before the court in 2077, and future-Alec’s obvious role in a travesty of justice? “Second Degree” proves that in the here and now, Alec is a good person. In 2077, though…? As the saying goes: Only time will tell.

SEE YOU NEXT EPISODE ON THE CONTINUUM BLOG!

Weekend Movies: Aliens, Zombies, Swarms, And Will Smith

That’s either the name of a personal injury law firm, or a pitch-perfect description of the flicks we’re serving up for you this weekend. Who knows, maybe it’s both. Yeah, let’s say it’s both.

 

Solar Attack (aka Solar Strike) MOW Friday, June 7, 6pm ET

Decoys II (MOW) Friday, June 7, 8pm ET

Independence Day Friday, June 7, 11:15pm, plus Saturday, June 8, 10am and 3pm ET

I Am Legend Saturday, June 8, 1pm, plus Sunday, June 9, 12am and 4pm ET

Black Swarm (MOW) Saturday, June 8, 6pm ET

Jet Stream (MOW)Saturday, June 8, 8pm ET

Clash of the TitansSaturday, June 8, 10pm, plus Sunday, June 9, 2am and 1:30pm ET

EragonSunday, June 9, 11:30am ET

Night at the Museum – Sunday, June 9, 3:30pm ET

 

Independence Day

The cast: Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum

The Showcase synopsis: “The aliens are coming and their goal is to invade and destroy. Fighting superior technology, man’s best weapon is the will to survive.”

 

I’m pretty sure this is one of those movies where, when faced with a not-very-pleasant situation, Will Smith grimaces ever so slightly and says, “Aww, HELL naw!” I mean, how can it not be? Freakin’ ALIENS are coming to take over the Earth. I can’t imagine Will holding on for a more fitting scenario to break out his trademarked catchphrase. The abject annihilation of our planet is pretty much as not-very-pleasant as you can get.

 

The Empire State building is all like, “Aww, HELL naw!”   

 

I Am Legend

The cast: Will Smith, a dog, buncha zombies

The Showcase synopsis: “Years after a plague kills most of humanity and transforms the rest into monsters, the sole survivor in New York City struggles valiantly to find a cure.”

 

Okay, we can at least all agree Will Smith has more than enough reason to break out an “Aww, HELL naw!” here. A freakin’ viral outbreak has decimated humankind! Oh, and now zombies are all de rigueur, which only pours salt on the ol’ wound. At worst, the events in I Am Legend certainly don’t warrant a “Hell yes!” At the very least, Will should consider breaking out a “This isn’t ideal!” or an “All things the same, I’d prefer not!”

 

A zombie took this photograph. 

 

Black Swarm (MOW)

The cast: Sebastien Roberts, Sarah Allen, Robert Englund

The Showcase synopsis: “When an idyllic town suffers from a spate of deadly wasp attacks, a pest control expert and his estranged lover must figure out why the wasps have become murderous killers and why residents are turning into killer drone zombies.”

 

“Hello, Defense Department? It’s the President. How large is your Intercontinental Ballistic Swatter?”

 

A wasp zombie took this photograph. 

 

Jet Stream (MOW)

The cast: No idea. Nada.

The Showcase synopsis: “A weatherman and his friend Debbie must fly into a 500 MPH jet stream and take control of it before the Earth is destroyed.”

 

Full disclosure: I haven’t seen Jet Stream. Not a frame of it. And I’m Showcase’s movie guy, for the love of Mike. In fact, not only have I not seen it, I can’t find any evidence of its existence on the internet. I don’t know who’s in it, what year it was made, or if the thing’s any good. All I have to go on is the one-line synopsis above, which I didn’t even write (who did write it? No idea). And you know what? This is all pretty flippin’ exciting. I mean, how often do you stumble across a movie that’s completely, 100% off the grid? No easy feat in this Google-soaked world of ours. My suggestion: tune in along with me this Saturday night and let’s live-tweet whatever the hell pops up on the screen. Twitter hashtags: #Showcase #JetStreamWTF.

 

No promotional image either, so here’s a photo of young Linda Ronstadt. Crazy hot, right? 

 

Clash of the Titans

The cast: Sam Worthington, Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes

The Showcase synopsis: “Perseus, mortal son of Zeus, battles the minions of the underworld to stop them from conquering the Earth and the heavens.”

 

Haters gonna hate. Titans gonna clash.

 

Get rich or die clashin’.

 

Eragon

The cast: Edward Speleers, Jeremy Irons, John Malkovich

The Showcase synopsis: “In his homeland of Alagaesia, a farm boy happens upon a dragon’s egg – a discovery that leads him on a predestined journey where he realized he’s the one person who can defend his home against an evil king.”

 

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from The Princess Bride, it’s to never underestimate the royalty-defeating skills of simple farm boys. There’s just something about these baby-faced, apple-picking, goat herders that screams, “I will take you DOWNTOWN, Monarchy! Old school!”

 

“No, I’m from Alagaesia, not Al Jazeera. I get that a lot, though.”