Woody Harrelson

The Best and Worst of Last Night’s ‘SNL’ with Woody Harrelson

In a post-True Detective season one world, it’s great to see Woody Harrelson take the SNL stage tonight. His career path has taken some unexpected turns — from a role as a bartender on the beloved sitcom Cheers and a serial murderer in Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers, to mega franchise star in The Hunger Games and his sad-sack cop in Nic Pizzolatto’s HBO drama. Will a glassy-eyed Woody be rusty after 25 years since his last hosting stint? Find out how it all went down, below. … Read More

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The Slow Erosion of the TV vs. Movie Actor Class System

I know you’re supposed to let a movie draw you into its narrative without excess baggage, and its characters should exist only as themselves and so on, but I had an odd moment of external realization when I first saw About Alex (which is out this week on DVD, and is pretty good). The scene comes about six minutes into this junior Big Chill, and there’s nothing earth-shattering about it as a scene; Siri (Maggie Grace) meets Josh (Max Greenfield) and Sarah (Aubrey Plaza) at the train station to drive them to the cabin where they and several other old friends are spending the weekend. But as the three characters embraced and reconnected, something in the back of my head whispered, “Look, it’s Schmidt and April Ludgate meeting up with Shannon from Lost.” And no, that didn’t make this scene the culmination of some sort of weird TV fan fiction; it merely accentuated, with a rare bit of clarity, how much the game has changed for actors, in terms of the transition from TV to film (and back). … Read More

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10 Great Movies to Stream This Holiday Weekend

The Labor Day weekend doesn’t begin until end of day tomorrow, but c’mon, who’re we kidding — you’ve already checked out for the week, and it’s time to start making plans. And while we know some of you (shudder) sociable types will be heading out to lakes and barbeques and such destinations to enjoy the end of another summer, we’re catering (as usual) to the shut-ins, who’re taking the three day holiday weekend to catch up on some long-delayed nothing-doing. So here are a few of the recent(ish) additions to Netflix and Amazon Prime to add to your holiday weekend viewing lists; just click the title link to watch them right now. … Read More

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Imagining the Quentin Tarantino-Directed ‘Natural Born Killers’ That Could Have Been

Twenty years ago today, moviegoers had their first opportunity to take in Natural Born Killers, Oliver Stone’s bloody, grim, and broadly satiric take on serial killers, celebrity culture, and tabloid media. But those who sought out the film on more obscure grounds were in for a disappointment. Quentin Tarantino was not yet a household name; he was still an acquired taste, thanks to the less-than-stellar box office of his 1992’s Reservoir Dogs (which he wrote and directed) and 1993’s True Romance (writer only). His small (yet rapidly expanding) cult following was thrilled at the prospect of a new Tarantino movie—but by the time Natural Born Killers reached the screen, it was no longer the movie Tarantino had penned. His screenplay had been so drastically rewritten, we were told, that he had elected only to take a “story by” credit. And that, presumably, was the last we’d hear about Mr. Tarantino’s Natural Born Killers. … Read More

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District 13 Revolutionaries Stare and Brood in New ‘Mockingjay’ Posters

Be thankful Lionsgate is doing such a great job coming up with propaganda-inspired Mockingjay — Part 1 promotional materials, because if it weren’t, we’d already be sick of this stuff, over three months before the film’s premiere. Back in June, the Capitol’s oppressive regime offered us a stunning series of posters celebrating the districts they exploit. Now, secret rogue territory District 13 has issued its response, in the form of these portraits of its heroic leading revolutionaries, doing what revolutionaries do (brood, stare dreamily into the bright yet frustratingly far-off future). While you won’t spot the Mockingjay here, there are plenty of other familiar faces. … Read More

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The 25 Best Cop Shows of All Time

It’s a big day for fans of ’80s television, cop shows, and, basically, things that are good: after first and second season releases that ended in 2006 and never resumed, the pop culture saviors over at Shout Factory have stepped up with a massive, full-series DVD box set for Hill Street Blues, the ground-breaking dramatic series that continues to influence quality television to this very day. And while it’s easy enough to earmark Hill Street as one of the best police series of all time, how do all those perp-chasing, car-crashing, rule-bending, good-cop-bad-cops actually stack up against each other? … Read More

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‘True Detective’ Was a Case Study in the Drawbacks of TV Recap Culture

Now that 48 hours have passed and HBO Go is fully recovered, it’s safe to assume that most of the millions of people attempting to watch the True Detective finale have done so by now. After weeks of anticipation, crazy co-star Oscar speeches, and increasingly elaborate theories from the Internet hive mind, the general consensus (although much of the Flavorwire staff dissents) is that the final hour of HBO’s latest powerhouse was, well… not what fans hoped it would be. And inevitably, disappointment with True Detective‘s final hour translates into disappointment with True Detective as a whole. Nic Pizzolatto’s brainchild is still a wonderful way to spend eight hours, of course, but it’s also a cautionary tale in making any definitive judgements about a show — especially a show like this one — before it’s over. … Read More

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Miss ‘True Detective’? Enjoy the Trailer for the Nadir of Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson, ‘Surfer, Dude’

Once there was a movie about a sun-dappled surfer living the dream, not wearing a shirt, ever, and using… Read More

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‘True Detective’ Season 1 Finale Recap: “Form and Void”

Well, there you have it. Eight episodes and a case spanning over 15 years, and we finally get our answers. The first season finale had much of what you would expect: a creepy murderous duo, a violent battle, blood and disgust and philosophizing and reconciliations. Yet the season didn’t end with a bang — not a loud one, at least — but a whimper. It was a predictable and simplistic ending to a mass conspiracy that has turned us all into obsessive detectives, combing every inch of episodes for clues and using our blogs as the internet version of Rust’s crazy wall. So, was it worth it?

… Read More

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