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10 times Sigourney Weaver was a total badass

5 hours ago

Sigourney Weaver is a national treasure. Are you aware of this? If you answered "no," you simply haven't been paying attention. For over three decades, the Oscar-nominated actress has gifted us some of our most ferocious movie characters, from the xenomorph-battling Ellen Ripley in the "Alien" series to Katharine Parker in "Working Girl" to Dr. Grace Augustine in James Cameron's "Avatar." In light of that, and to celebrate her appearance in Neill Blomkamp's upcoming sci-fi film "Chappie," we're breaking down ten times she was a total badass on screen. You knew she was a force to be reckoned with in "Aliens," but what about "Galaxy Quest"? "Heartbreakers"? "The Ice Storm"? We're covering all the bases here, from every stage of her incredible film career. Revere a living legend with us below, then feel free to weigh in with your own favorite moments in the comments. »


- Chris Eggertsen

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Recap: 'American Idol' Season 14 - Top 8 Girls Perform Motown

8 hours ago

I put a picture of Trevor Douglas with my Wednesday night "American Idol" recap, because I figured that even with a bad performance last week, he was still likely to advance. I was wrong. American made some interesting choices when it came to the Boys but will voters have better or more predictable judgment when it comes to the Girls? Click through, follow along, comment below and let's find out! 8:01 p.m. Et. Ryan Seacrest is Really keeping things casual for these Detroit shows, eh? 8:02 p.m. Same deal as last night: Eight girls will be called to perform. The other four? Eliminated. Up first? Singer: Tyanna Jones Song: "Rockin' Robin" My Take: Easy call, America. But at least you got it right. With her infectious smile, infectious voice and infectious blue tinted hair, Tyanna is... ummm... infectious. This performance is just about having fun and, as a result, »


- Daniel Fienberg

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287 days until Star Wars: You'll never guess what inspired Lando's 'Rotj' helmet design

9 hours ago

When Princess Leia and Lando Calrissian needed to infiltrate Jabba’s palace in “Return of the Jedi,” they couldn’t just waltz right in. Not with those famous faces. But while Leia opted for full facial absurdity, Lando chose a really strange helmet design. Over twenty years after Lando lost his hat (presumably to the Sarlaac Pit), costume designer Nilo Rodis-Jamero revealed to Star Wars Insider Magazine (Swim) just where the inspiration came from…a baseball glove. Image via Reddit During his interview with Swim, Rodis-Jamero recalled the Eureka moment: "[…] Every Friday afternoon, we used to run off to the ranch and we would play baseball. I remember jokingly putting a baseball glove on engineer Wade Childress’s head, and that was the birth of Lando Calrissian’s disguise." Rodis-Jamero had Childress pose for a few Polaroids and quickly sketched the rest of the design straight onto the photograph. However, »


- Donna Dickens

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'The Amazing Race' Exclusive: The teams get dressed up in Thailand

10 hours ago

"The Amazing Race" returns to Thailand on Friday (March 6) night's episode and it looks like things are going to be getting a little strange. The trailers for the episode have mostly concentrated on the zip-lining and subsequent drama, particularly with blind-daters Hayley & Blair, who are seemingly headed for an epic blow-up. However, it appears that a challenge in Thailand is going to make the pairs take part in a Thai nightclub act of some sort. Normally, I'd think that would be good news for Jonathan & Harley, since what are the New Kids on the Block if not a glorified Thai nightclub act. But this season has already demonstrated Jonathan's insecurity when it comes to choreography. So instead, this may be a chance for Vegas showgirl Jackie and blind-dating partner Jeff to take control? Check out the pictures below and check back tomorrow night for my full recap. »


- Daniel Fienberg

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Outrage Watch: Method Man is really, really angry about this Wu-Tang album auction

11 hours ago

Welcome to the March 5, 2015 edition of Outrage Watch, HitFix's (almost) daily rundown of all the things folks are peeved about in entertainment. Today's top story: Method Man is speaking his truth -- loudly and with a lot of curse words. After hearing that his former Wu-Tang clan cohorts would be auctioning off the only copy of the band's secret "final" album "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin" for millions of dollars -- with the caveat that the buyer will not have the right to make money off the album for 88 years -- Method Man did not hold back in an interview with Xxl magazine. “Fuck that album,” said the rapper. “I’m tired of this shit and I know everybody else is tired of it, too. Fuck that album, if that’s what they are doing. I haven’t heard anything like that, but if they’re doing crap like that, »


- Chris Eggertsen

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Review: USA's 'Dig' goes from Holy Land mystery to wholly bland dud

11 hours ago

"The Big Bang Theory" did an episode in which Amy ruins "Raiders of the Lost Ark" for Sheldon by pointing out that for all of the action and adventure, "Indiana Jones plays no role in the outcome of the story. If he weren’t in the film, it would turn out exactly the same." I've watched "Raiders of the Lost Ark" subsequently and, thankfully, Amy didn't actually ruin the movie. I can't dispute her regarding the main character's agency, but it's still an awesome movie, one of the genre's most thrilling achievements. You cannot, it turns out, ruin "Raiders of the Lost Ark" by pointing out a structure flaw. You also, fortunately, cannot ruin "Raiders of the Lost Ark" by doing a dreadful story about nefarious forces searching for the Ark of the Covenant, or Ark-adjacent artifacts. But if you could ruin "Raiders of the Lost Ark" merely by desecrating its dramatic objective, »


- Daniel Fienberg

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Review: 'District 9' director fumbles frustrating sci-fi grab bag 'Chappie'

12 hours ago

One of the things that made that first screening of "District 9" such a tremendous surprise at Comic-Con was the way the film had flown almost completely under the radar. I remember seeing the short film he made, and I remember hearing his name mentioned in association with "Halo," but I was still blindsided by just how good "District 9" was. When I reviewed "Elysium," I gave that film every benefit of the doubt. I went back to re-read the review tonight, and I stand by the enthusiasm of it, but not the final rating. When I re-watched the film, I felt it falling apart in front of me, and it was upsetting because I want to believe in this guy. I wrote that review from the perspective of someone who desperately wants Neill Blomkamp to make original science-fiction films that do not rely on existing properties. I have a new desire, »


- Drew McWeeny

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So it looks like He-Man’s beloved green Battle Cat got a gritty live-action makeover

14 hours ago

If you grew up in the 1980s, chances are at least once you pretended a broom was your fearless green Battle Cat steed (when you weren’t using the power of imagination to ride into the cloudless sky on the back of Swift Wind). To this day you can conjure an image of Battle Cat with his glossy verdant coat and rust-colored armor. The nature of the Hollywood beast being what it is, He-Man, Skeletor, and the rest of the gang are in the pipeline for a live-action “Masters of the Universe” reboot. Spear-headed by Sony Pictures, production has been going in fits and starts for over a year. But when a fan questioned DeVon Franklin — VP of Production at Columbia Pictures — about the status of He-Man’s return to the big screen, Franklin responded with this: That definitely looks like Battle Cat, but with the standard-issue coating of Sepia »


- Donna Dickens

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TV Ratings: 'Empire' rises again, 'Survivor' tops 'Idol' and 'CSI: Cyber' is Ok

16 hours ago

Fast National ratings for Wednesday, March 4, 2015. "American Idol" took a big dip on Wednesday night, but Fox barely felt the pinch as "Empire" did what "Empire" has been doing for two months now, defying all expectations with yet another improbable jump across the board, leading Fox to comfortable primetime wins in all measures. Fox is saying that the 18-49 number for "Empire" this week is the highest for any regularly schedule broadcast drama since "Grey's Anatomy" in October 2009. [Emphasis on "regularly scheduled" because of the out-of-regular-time-period "Lost" finale in May 2010 and, presumably, because of post-Super Bowl dramas and whatnot.] "Empire" continues to take a bite out of "Criminal Minds" in the 9:00 hour, though the 10 p.m. premiere of "CSI: Cyber" on CBS maintained most of its lead-in. And in the first part of its season finale, The CW's "The 100" held its own and improved on its "Arrow" repeat lead-in. On to the numbers... Among adults 18-49, Fox averaged a 3.9 rating for Wednesday night, dominating the key demographic. ABC was second with a 2.2 key demo rating, »


- Daniel Fienberg

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Here's that Game of Thrones/Taylor Swift parody earworm you wanted to be singing for 24 hours

16 hours ago

When Taylor Swift released “Blank Space” last year, it showed a surprising amount of self-awareness as to her public image. So of course Nerdist took the themes of public expectation and channeled it into a “Game of Thrones” parody. Instead of telling a story about the cycle of doomed infatuation, it feeds off the fear that fan favorites won’t live to see the spring. The song was written by Freddy Scott, and the music video was directed by Andrew Bowser and Ben Mekler.   »


- Donna Dickens

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Review: Ellie Kemper finds the joy in Tina Fey's dark, funny 'Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt'

19 hours ago

Early in the first episode of "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt," the title character, played by Ellie Kemper, smiles as she explores New York City for the first time. It is among the biggest, widest, happiest smiles I have ever witnessed, on screen or in real life, Kemper opening her mouth so widely that you can practically count all her teeth. It is a smile that holds nothing back, and it's emblematic of the rest of "The Office" alum's performance. Whatever Kemper is asked to do by "Kimmy Schmidt" creators Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, she commits to fully, like a scene at a club where she hurls her body across the dance floor with abandon. It is a great, overjoyed lead performance, and I can't imagine this show working at all — even on Netflix which scooped up the 13-episode first season (all episodes will be released after midnight Pacific tonight) after »


- Alan Sepinwall

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Recap: 'Survivor: Worlds Apart' - 'It Will Be My Revenge'

4 March 2015 9:45 PM, PST

Pre-credit sequence. Oddly, rather than returning to camp post-vote with White Collar, we kick things off on the Blue Collar beach where the crabs are plentiful. Everybody is enjoying their food. Everybody, that is, other than Dan. Dan returns from the sea after a bit of drama that caused him to lose his underwear. He's made a diaper out of a shirt, with a belt around his waist. And with Dan wearing his shirt as underwear, that means Dan doesn't have a shirt. The ladies suggest he might want to cut up his jeans, but Dan doesn't want to "raw dog" in jeans, which makes sense because you sure don't want to be the first player in "Survivor" history to be medically evacuated with chafed genitals. Lindsey babbles about how this was Dan's strategy because he had nothing else going for him. She just wants to get to Tribal »


- Daniel Fienberg

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Review: 'The Americans' - 'Born Again': Seduction of the innocent

4 March 2015 8:06 PM, PST

A review of tonight's "The Americans" you give me your earrings... "No, I brought you here because I wanted you to know that I'm more like you than you think." -Elizabeth Where last week's episode was largely defined by the terrible role that sex plays in Philip and Elizabeth's work, "Born Again" was for the most part (save Tori with Stan) about a very different sort of seduction. Here, words were used instead of physical advances, but the net effect is the same, as various characters — including Philip and Elizabeth themselves — get sucked into doing, saying and believing things they shouldn't, all because the person opposite them has said the right words in the proper order. It's another masterful episode in a season that's been full of them, and what's so impressive is how much power the show is getting out of the simple moral implications of things. My »


- Alan Sepinwall

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An 18-Film, Step-By-Step Guide to Turning a Friend on to the Horror Genre

4 March 2015 5:18 PM, PST

Let's face it: some people hate horror movies for no good reason. And it's no surprise! The genre has been routinely ghettoized and snubbed for decades. So how do we break down this insidious conditioning and make bona fide horror fans out of folks who turn their noses up at the genre and/or are just too scared to watch these movies in the first place? Or, hell, if you are one of those people -- maybe you just want to try this on yourself. Here's my theory: it's all about sequencing. Think about albums, for example. How much a listener warms to a record has a lot to do with the order in which the songs are presented, and the same could be said of the order in which a person views classic horror films. Someone exposed to "The Texas Chain Saw Massacre" too early, for example, could write off the genre for good, »


- Chris Eggertsen

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The Complete History of Maggie Smith Looking Unimpressed

4 March 2015 5:17 PM, PST

When Maggie Smith mentioned (jokingly, I guess?) that she'd probably leave "Downton Abbey" soon, a few urgent thoughts came to mind: Can we handle her departure? Is she dropping out of acting for good? Should I just cancel my "Downton Abbey" season pass now? But most importantly, I realized: Wow, if Maggie Smith quits acting, she'll have left behind an astounding history of looking unimpressed with everyone.  To celebrate Maggie Smith's big screen sorcery, let's take a long, serious look at the icy stares that have made her who she is today. We love her, we fear her, and we'll spend the rest of our lives trying to match the Dowager Countess' imperial grit.  »


- Louis Virtel

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Recap: 'American Idol' Season 14 - Top 8 Boys Perform

4 March 2015 4:59 PM, PST

Last week, the "American Idol" Top 24 performed over two chaotically edited nights.  This week, we're going to apparently be eliminating eight people, while also showcasing eight performances per night leading up to eliminations next week. And Aretha Franklin's going to be involved in some way. Click through and follow along! 7:59 p.m. Et. Per Ryan Seacrest's twitter, eight guys will get called to perform. If you don't get called, you're eliminated. This is, of course, utterly vicious to the last few performers, who will be stressed out balls of adrenaline. But who cares! 8:00 p.m. Oh Snap! It's Aretha! She's doing "I Will Survive." A couple years ago, we were really concerned about Aretha's health and it seemed like we might not have her for long, but she looks and sounds spectacular. What an absolutely terrific turn of events. I'm just plain happy. 8:03 p.m. »


- Daniel Fienberg

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288 days until Star Wars: Princess Leia #1 deals with the fallout of Alderaan's destruction

4 March 2015 3:45 PM, PST

Princess Leia’s day in the sun has been a long time coming. Between comforting Luke Skywalker — a guy she just met — over the death of an old man he’d known for three days instead of mourning the devastating loss of her home planet, and rescuing Han Solo — which got her captured into ambiguous sexual slavery for her efforts — the last Princess of Alderaan continuously got the short end of the stick when it came to the original trilogy. But no more. Princess Leia #1 begins to explore why Leia might not grieve more openly…and how that makes her look like a cold-blooded witch to some of those around around her. After all, while the breakneck speed of the films doesn’t allow audiences to stop and examine her title, Leia is royalty. Being heir to the Alderaan throne* comes with years of training; a sense of propriety and »


- Donna Dickens

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Round Up: 'Brooklyn' and 'Danish Girl' set dates and Spielberg's latest gets a title

4 March 2015 1:26 PM, PST

Awards season has transformed into pretty much a 12 month a year event (outside of maybe a few weeks in June) which means there is news to report about some of the more anticipated prestige players of 2015. Fox Searchlight announced today that John Crowley's acclaimed romantic drama "Brooklyn" will hit theaters in platform release on Nov. 6.  The tearjerker was one of the big surprises at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival where it screened out of competition (read my review here).  Stars Saoirse Ronan, Michael Zegen, Domhnall Gleeson and Julie Walters are all potential acting category contenders and Nick Hornby delivers another wonderful screenplay adaptation after last year's "Wild."  Screenings at Telluride or Toronto seem likely, but a slot at the New York Film Festival just makes too much sense, doesn't it? Tom Hooper's "The Danish Girl" also found a release date today as Focus Features announced it will open in New »


- Gregory Ellwood

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20 "Wait, did you see that!?" moments from the new 'Age of Ultron' trailer

4 March 2015 12:52 PM, PST

Earlier today Marvel released the third trailer for “Avengers: Age of Ultron” after a concentrated campaign from social media to get #AvengersAssemble trending. It was a bold marketing move that could've backfired spectacularly...but it didn't. The ploy was well worth it to fans waiting for a glimpse of new footage. Not only did the trailer solidify the plot of “Age of Ultron,” it slid in a ton of new scenes for each of the six Avengers, as well as the villainous Ultron. Some of the sequences confirmed well-worn rumors about love interest developments or the manifestation of a certain character’s powers. A few were intriguing new mysteries. And at least one might have just connected “Age of Ultron” to the Infinity Stone plot line that extends across the entire McU. After the jump, see some of the best new moments to look forward to when “Avengers: Age of Ultron »


- Donna Dickens

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Outrage Watch: Is 'Cinderella's' waist too small?

4 March 2015 11:47 AM, PST

Welcome to the March 4, 2015 edition of Outrage Watch, HitFix's (almost) daily rundown of all the things folks are peeved about in entertainment. Today's top story: "Cinderella's" teeny, tiny waist has become a battleground. After some observers questioned whether actress Lily James' barely-there midsection in the Disney film's trailer was the result of post-production trickery, the actress defended against those claims at the film's red carpet premiere, telling the La Times that not only does she have a "naturally" small waist, but that the look was the result of a corset designed by "Cinderella" costume designer Sandy Powell. Of the doubters, she added: “I think it’s all very hypocritical, and they contradict themselves, and they’re drawing more attention to it. I think all that stuff’s so negative, and you’ve got to let it wash over your head. ...I’m so healthy. I’ve got hips »


- Chris Eggertsen

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