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Review: The Death of Stalin (2017)

Anybody who discusses satire in audio-visual media at some point must mention the work of Armando Iannucci. Creator of TV’s The Thick Of It and Veep, with credits that include The Day Today and Alan Partridge, his work is some of the finest in Comedy. And in 2009, Iannucci made his big screen full feature directorial debut with The Thick Of It spin-off In The Loop (one of the best comedies of our times) and now, Iannucci casts his eye to even darker – and even more volatile – political territory with The Death of Stalin.

As concepts go, this film has a pitch black core, as it not only delves into a figure whose actions have reverberated throughout socio-political history but in looking at the events surrounding his death in 1953 and the power struggles within the Soviet Union, it is a brazen era, to say the least, in which to set a Comedy.
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Jason Isaacs interview: The Death Of Stalin

Rob Leane Oct 19, 2017

We said hello to Jason Isaacs, before chatting about The Death Of Stalin and Star Trek: Discovery...

Jason Isaacs has been on our screens a lot of late. The former Lucius Malfoy actor is currently gracing online streaming services around the globe as Captain Lorca in Star Trek: Discovery, and his hilarious turn as General Zhukov in The Death Of Stalin will be lighting up a cinema near you very soon.

See related Gunpowder: air date announced for Kit Harington's new show Game Of Thrones: the things Jon Snow does know 26 new TV shows to watch in 2017

As part of his promotional tour for the aforementioned Russian romp – which has satirical mastermind Armando Iannucci (Alan Partridge, The Thick Of It, Veep) at its helm – Isaacs sat with us for twenty minutes in a swanky London hotel to have a ruddy good chat.

As I shuffled in and sat down,
See full article at Den of Geek »

New ‘Death Of Stalin’ Trailer Hits As Armando Iannucci Sets Up New HBO Show

  • The Playlist
There are few talents we need in the world right now as much as Armando Iannucci. The Scottish writer and director has been a familiar comedy face in the UK for a long time (helping to create the seminal “The Day Today,” which launched the careers of Chris Morris and Steve Coogan), but he really broke through in the U.S. with his political sitcom “The Thick Of It,” the Oscar-nominated film spin-off “In The Loop,” and the America-set spiritual sequel “Veep.”

All three share qualities — a docudrama-ish quality, brilliant comic performances across the board, some of the greatest swearing and insults in the history of the English language — but more than that, they skewer the low-key incompetencies, egos and absurdities of the political world like few others, and in ways which both capture their times, and prove oddly prescient.

Continue reading New ‘Death Of Stalin’ Trailer Hits As Armando Iannucci
See full article at The Playlist »

Five Things You Didn’t Know About Armando Iannucci

Armando Iannucci is well known as the creator of “.” He’s also spent years contributing to the comedy world in Britain. He has tons of credits in his professional portfolio including “On The Hour,” “The Day Today” and others. His creative flair for television and radio has entertained viewers and listeners world-wide for the past few decades. While we may be able to recognize his fingerprints in countless scenes that he has himself written, how much do we really know about Iannucci? We think that people need to know more about this talented writer ans producer, so we’re sharing some

Five Things You Didn’t Know About Armando Iannucci
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Wednesday’s best TV: Trust Me, I’m a Doctor, British Empire: Heroes and Villains

  • The Guardian - TV News
Guinea pig Michael Mosley tests out the weight-loss benefits of diet and exercise. Plus: David Olusoga examines how the empire has been treated by TV

The last in the series finds the famous “going for an English” sketch from Goodness Gracious Me dissected by, among others, Meera Syal, who helped to create it. Then an impressive haul of celebs, including Nigel Planer, David Baddiel, Ricky Tomlinson, Maxine Peake, Diane Morgan, Russell Tovey and Josie Lawrence, discuss everything from Spaced, The Day Today and Blackadder to Till Death Us Do Part, all in Gogglebox style. Ben Arnold

Continue reading...
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Brass Eye at 20: still Chris Morris at his hysterical, gobsmacking best

From Cake to Paedogeddon, Chris Morris’s epochal satire always said the unsayable. No other comedy has touched it – or even come close

As Brass Eye turns 20, it’s worth remembering that it probably shouldn’t have made it to our screens at all. When Chris Morris’s epochal media satire first aired, the broadcasting code forbade programme makers from misleading interviewees for entertainment purposes. Channel 4 defended the show and an amendment informally known as “the Brass Eye clause” was incorporated into the code. It’s an example of Morris’s apparent ability to bend reality according to his needs – and at the time of Brass Eye, he appeared able to perform this trick at will.

It’s hard to overstate the shock of initial exposure to Brass Eye. The Day Today, which aired in 1994, had suggested that Morris was an unusually gifted writer and performer. But this was
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

On The Hour: revisiting a brilliant radio comedy

Andrew Blair Oct 17, 2016

Armando Iannucci & Chris Morris' BBC Radio 4 news spoof not only gave rise to Alan Partridge but also launched countless comedy careers.

If you haven’t heard of On The Hour, you’ll have seen or read the work of the people who made it: Brass Eye, The Thick Of It, Stewart Lee’s Comedy Vehicle, Veep, Four Lions, that bit on the train at the end of Mission: Impossible, Closer, Jam, the Leicester Square Theatre Podcasts, the movie version of Notes On A Scandal; the NME, TV Burp, the videos for Little Baby Nothing by the Manics and Kung Fu by Ash, Smack The Pony, and Alan Partridge to name a few.

See related The Big Bang Theory season 10 episode 4 review: The Cohabitation Experimentation The Big Bang Theory season 10 episode 3 review: The Dependence Transcendence The Big Bang Theory season 10 episode 2 review: The Military Miniaturization The Big Bang Theory
See full article at Den of Geek »

Income Disposal: Harry Potter and Power Wheels: Here’s what’s on sale on Amazon today

  • The AV Club
In an effort to both serve our readers and help support The A.V. Club, we are going to post daily links to deals and interesting items that we find over on Amazon. If you use these links to click through and buy something—not just the thing you clicked—on Amazon, we will see a portion of that income. You don’t have to do that if you don’t want to, but if you do, know that we appreciate it.

Nickelodeon Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Lights And Sounds Trike ($39.89)

Amazon’s Deal Of The Day today is kids ride-on items, like trikes, wagons, and Power Wheels. In other words, if you’ve ever thought about getting your kid a sweet-looking tractor or pulling your dog along in a wagon, today’s the day to make that dream come true.

FitDesk Under Desk Elliptical ($99.99)

Now ...
See full article at The AV Club »

Patrick Marber on five years of writer's block: 'We were in debt. I was depressed. It was awful'

Alan Partridge, Closer, an Oscar nomination … then nothing. As his Strindberg update goes on tour, the writer talks about Coogan, creativity and his days as a posh standup

It’s lunchtime in a London park on the warmest day of the year, so naturally Patrick Marber has ordered porridge for breakfast. He sits in the sun with the tub of hot gruel placed next to his e-cigarette. His shoulders are hunched as though he’s chilled to the bone or braced for invisible storms. Who cares what time it is? Who cares what season? He wants what he wants and he brings the weather with him.

What an iconoclastic career Marber has had, which is another way of saying that it’s been confounding, erratic and prone to bouts of self-sabotage. We’ve known him as a spluttering clown, a mainstay of BBC’s The Day Today and as a respected man of letters,
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Look Around You box set review: O-level science reshaped by anarchists

How do you shave raspberries? What’s a Bakerloo bell jar? How do you make sulphagne? The mysteries of the universe are revealed in these hilarious spoof ‘educational modules’

Many of us will remember teachers clumsily battling with VHS players as they tried to put on videos of old and outdated science experiments. These would invariably feature close-ups of pencils pointing at circuitry, and be boringly narrated by expressionless men with sideburns. It’s these vintage Open University broadcasts that are targeted by Look Around You, a series of 10-minute curios that first aired on BBC2 14 years ago. They’re as hilarious and colourful a lampooning as The Day Today was of Newsnight.

Created by Robert Popper (who went on to make Friday Night Dinner) and Peter Serafinowicz (who had just provided the voice of Darth Maul in Star Wars), Look Around You was O-level science reshaped by anarchists. Its
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

27 British films to look out for in 2016

  • Den of Geek



Cheer on local talent with these potentially great UK films from 2016, including drama, comedy, action, horror, fantasy & more…

While Batman Vs Superman, Captain America: Civil War, X-Men Apocalypse and other mega franchises are expected to dominate cinemas in 2016, let’s hear it for the films below. None are sequels, few have titanic budgets, all of them are British and each of them has the potential to be great.

2016 looks to be a particularly strong year for UK crime drama, with Ben Wheatley’s Free Fire, Adam Smith’s Trespass Against Us and Michael Apted’s Unlocked on their way. Military thrillers are also well represented this year, with Gavin Hood’s Eye In The Sky, Fernando Coimbra’s Sand Castle, and Simon West’s Stratton incoming. There’s also comedy, fantasy, drama, horror and even a musical waiting for you below.

A Street Cat Named Bob (dir.
See full article at Den of Geek »

The Apprentice 2015: episode seven – as it happened

This week, Lord Sugar laid on an opportunity for the teams to open a discount store and turn products into profit in two days

10.00pm GMT

Next week the dolts are party planning and cheery Selina barks, “I don’t have children. I don’t like them.” Did any of the men say anything about this or are we just defaulting to the stereotype of the child-free woman here? I wonder.

Join me next week when, minus Sam, they’ll be back to put themselves (and us) through all of this nonsense again. Just four more times for luck.

9.58pm GMT

The other chumps await their returning heroes on the roof terrace even though it is obviously freezing and they are all shivering and trying to stop their Viognier wobbling.

9.57pm GMT

We all knew it about 45 minutes ago didn’t we? No big surprises this week. Brett and Scott
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Doctor Who series 9: geeky spots in The Zygon Invasion

  • Den of Geek



Unit, shape-shifters and the Doctor cosplay. Here are the geeky bits and pieces we spotted in Doctor Who's The Zygon Invasion...

For at least the third time this series, one or all of the characters you care about on this show are dead. So what better way to celebrate than to read through our weekly list of callbacks, allusions, shared themes and generally interesting (if tenuous) nonsense? As ever, feel free to leave your own contributions in the comments below!

The Old-Who Invasion

This is the third appearance of the Zygons in Doctor Who; they first menaced the fourth Doctor in 1975’s Terror Of The Zygons, a story which revealed the Loch Ness Monster to be one of the Skarasen, a race from the Zygon homeworld. Unit also featured in that tale, with Kate’s father Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart revealing his Scots heritage in a fetching kilt.
See full article at Den of Geek »

11 magnificent moments that made Cilla Black the queen of entertainment TV

Cilla Black was a hugely popular entertainer for over five decades, presenting some of the biggest variety shows and teaming up with the biggest stars.

As the country says goodbye to 'Our Cilla' today (August 20) at her funeral in Liverpool, we've chosen a bunch of hilarious and moving moments from her successful career.

1. Meeting a real-life Mr Bean on the real Blind Date

Blind Date was known for its wacky contestants looking for love, and you can't get much wackier than Geoff Carter. Despite wearing a ludicrous shellsuit and carrying a Sooty puppet, he managed to win a date to the Seychelles. Suffice to say, they didn't get married.

2. Owning an undercover journalist on Blind Date

Cilla had her major comeback with Blind Date, a show which had so many memorable moments. One of the most controversial was when Cilla publicly outed a Cosmopolitan journalist who posed as a contestant,
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

Q&A: Rebecca Front, actor and writer

‘My guiltiest pleasure? Watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians with my daughter’

Born in London in 1964, Rebecca Front, 51, studied at Oxford University. A comic actor and writer, her work includes The Day Today, Knowing Me, Knowing You With Alan Partridge and Nighty Night. In 2010, she won a Bafta for her role in The Thick Of It. She lives in London with her husband and their children. Her book Curious: True Stories And Everyday Oddities is out in paperback on 16 July.

When were you happiest?

Last night, having dinner with the family round the kitchen table.

Continue reading...
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

TV comedy’s top 10 jargon abusers

  • Den of Geek
To celebrate the return of W1A, we salute the top 10 comedy characters who talk absolute mother-thumping rubbish…

Yesnobrilliantverygoodverystrong. As satirical BBC mockumentary W1A returns tonight for a triumphant second series, we celebrate TV comedy’s rich lineage of jargon fans.

Drawn from across the political spectrum and from TV’s most biting depictions of the worlds of business, government, technology and the media, these guys are master obfuscators. They're neologism-coiners and proponents of the kind of abuses to the English language that, in a just world, would see them locked up and force fed copies of The Elements Of Style.

From The Thick Of It to Peep Show, Yes Minister, The Office, Nathan Barley, The Day Today, and Drop The Dead Donkey, across the Pond to 30 Rock and Silicon Valley, we present TV comedy's top ten full-of-it jargon-meisters.

Stewart Pearson - The Thick Of It

Who is he?
See full article at Den of Geek »

13 British comedy stars lured to Hollywood in the 1990s

  • Den of Geek
Hollywood went hunting for lots of British comedy talent in the 1990s - and lured the likes of Hugh Laurie, Stephen Fry and Emma Thompson...

For some reason, Hollywood fell in love with British actors again in the 1990s. Sparked by Alan Rickman's turn as Hans Gruber in Die Hard at the back end of the 1980s, many movie villains were either Brits, or in the case of Cliffhanger, John Lithgow taking on the mannerisms of a British antagonist.

Yet in particular, Hollywood went recruiting British comedy talent, with faces then mainly - but not exclusively - known for their small screen work getting roles of various sizes in Hollywood productions. Here are some who racked up the air miles - starting with the man who arguably became one of the most successful...

Hugh Laurie - 101 Dalmatians

Laurie is a man of many talents, who ultimately cracked America with
See full article at Den of Geek »

Fans urge BBC to make Alan Partridge new host of Top Gear

Crash! Bang! Wallop… What a campaign!

Dedicated Alan Partridge fans have called for the Radio Norwich presenter to replace suspended Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson.

Partridge - a man who knows his Rovers from his Mini Metros - seems a natural replacement, doesn't he?

Lorn MacDonald launched the petition on, claiming the broadcaster should hire Steve Coogan's iconic comedy creation due to his "diversity of experience and his noted passion for cars".

In an open letter to the BBC, MacDonald writes: "Alan has a strong track record for broadcast presenting, from his relaxed professionalism with guests on BBC chat show Knowing Me Knowing You to his effortless banter on his talk shows at Radio Norwich.

He has good experience with motoring TV, after his brilliant work on 'Crash! Bang! Wallop! (What a video)'. His work as sports presenter on news programme The Day Today also shows
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

Competition: Win Eli Roth-produced horror ‘Clown’ on DVD

To celebrate the release of the truly terrifying Clown – on DVD & Blu-ray 2nd March 2015 – we have a DVD copy to giveaway courtesy of Studiocanal. From splatter-maestro Eli Roth (Hostel; Grindhouse) and starring Peter Stormare (Fargo; Jurassic Park: The Lost World), horror fans will rejoice as Clown sets out to break taboos and churn stomachs all at once!

“A killer of a clown movie” Horror Channel

“The most terrifying clown since Pennywise” Box Office Buz

“Gutsy, gory horror… strictly no funny business” The Hollywood News

Clown is available to order on Amazon today: The limited edition Blu-ray is available to order exclusively on Zavvi:

To win Clown on DVD, just answer the following question:

Clown director John Watts helmed episodes of which TV “news show”? Was it:

a) CNN

b) Onn

c) The Day Today

Email your answer to NerdlyComps@gmail.
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

Brian Pern A Life In Rock: The funniest show on TV right now

He's the man who "invented world music" and who created the first ever music video using Plasticine. Yes, we're talking about '70s rock legend Brian Pern - the frontman of Thotch.

Ok, Brian Pern might not be real, but Simon Day and Rhys Thomas's surreal music doc spoof is so on the money, it feels like Pern and Thotch are very much the bona fide article. Is the Day of the Triffids album not on iTunes yet?

With incredible guest appearances from the likes of Roger Moore, Martin Freeman and Kathy Burke, Brian Pern: A Life in Rock is the funniest TV show on right now.

We caught up with Day and Thomas to chat about its success.

First things first, I was a huge fan of your last comedy show Bellamy's People.

Simon Day: "Oh, don't get us started on that."

Honestly, I loved it. That didn't get a second series.
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »
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