TRUE BLOOD Series Finale Recap: “Thank You”

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True Blood‘s final season was a long goodbye, and its finale was an opportunity to craft its legacy regarding what, exactly, we were ultimately saying goodbye to.  To judge True Blood on “Thank You” is, like I mentioned last week, to parallel the fan experience with the relationship between Sookie and Bill.  True Blood had to end for us to live with ourselves.  As Sookie said, “You’re choosing to die because I have no self respect?”  And we couldn’t be more grateful.  Hit the jump for the end.

R.I.P. Richard Attenborough (1923 – 2014)

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Director and actor Richard Attenborough has passed away at the age of 90.  Perhaps best known to U.S. audiences as the kindly but misguided John Hammond in Jurassic Park, Attenborough’s career spanned seven decades and in 1983 he won Best Director and Best Picture for Ghandi.  His other directing credits included the star-studded A Bridge Too Far, the screen adaptation of the beloved stage musical A Chorus Line, and the biopic Chaplin, which earned Robert Downey Jr. a Best Actor nomination.  His notable acting roles include Brighton Rock, 10 Rillington Place, The Great Escape, and many more.  In 1993, Queen Elizabeth II awarded a life peerage to the British filmmaker.

Our deepest condolences go out to Lord Attenborough’s family and friends.  For more in-depth look at his life and accomplishments, click here.

THE STRAIN Recap: “For Services Rendered”

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In “For Services Rendered,” The Strain slowed down the monster onslaught (somewhat) in order to reveal some backstories and world-building.  What it really proved, though, was that all of this is about Abraham versus Eichorst, and younguns need to be seated and learn a thing or two.  (Abraham learned about these vampires, and how to kill them, from his Bubbie, heard?  An Armenian-Romanian Bubbie, no less).  The episode also introduced us to a brand new friend (or possibly foe …).  Hit the jump, if your sword-cane is ready.

MASTERS OF SEX Recap: “Asterion”

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In my recap of “Blackbird,” I mentioned that despite an emotionally compelling episode (in part), Masters of Sex seemed to really just be treading water.  That fact was also a disappointment primarily because of the Buell Green storyline, which flatlined before it had an opportunity to really be anything interesting.  “Asterion” had two major time jumps, but ultimately, they showed that the more things change, the more things stay the same.  Hit the jump for why “some things cannot be undone.”

RAY DONOVAN Recap: “Walk This Way”

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The Donovan clan, who have been living very separate lives this season, were all forced under one roof in “Walk This Way.”  The results were, predictably, a disaster.  But, “Conor wanted the family; Conor got the family.”  In many ways, “Walk This Way” was a perfect capsule episode of Ray Donovan that focused on the Donovans being as messed up as they could possibly be.  As far as what it means for their futures, though, things are not as clear.  Hit the jump for the difference between acne and a priest.

Michael Rooker Talks GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, Making Yondu “More Handsome” in the Sequel, How WALKING DEAD Conflicted with Filming, and More

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Not only has Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy become the biggest movie of the summer, but it’s just highly entertaining fun.  An action-packed epic space adventure, it’s such a fun ride, with great action, plenty of laughs, a ton of heart and perfect choices in music, and it will have you cheering for the snarky Rocket Raccoon and a talking tree named Groot.

During this recent exclusive interview with Collider, actor Michael Rooker (who plays blue-skinned humanoid Yondu) talked about how amazing it is to be a first-time Marvel actor and hit a home run, that he was confident that director James Gunn would put him in the film, if he could just convince Marvel and Disney, how he wouldn’t have been able to do Guardians, if his time on The Walking Dead hadn’t come to an end, how Yondu’s teeth and contacts bothered him more than the make-up, how very similar the finished product is to the original script, what a collaborative filmmaker James Gunn is, how even though he has no idea where his character will go in the sequel yet, he does know that Yondu will be more fleshed out, and that he’d love to see Yondu in other environments like Avengers 3.  He also talked about his next project, Bolden, which is a mythical account of the life of Buddy Bolden, the first cornet king of New Orleans.  Check out what he had to say after the jump.

Weekend Box Office: SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR Is DOA with Just $6.4 Million as GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Reclaims Box Office Throne

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Hoo-boy, people did not want to see Sin City: A Dame to Kill For.  The box office prospects for the follow-up were already looking pretty dim following dismal reviews and lack of general interest, but few would have guessed that directors Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller’s stylized sequel would only make $6.4 million for the entire weekend—for the entire weekend!  That’s down 78% from the first film’s opening weekend, and puts the film at No. 8 on the box office chart, as Marvel Studios’ highly successful Guardians of the Galaxy reclaimed the top spot for the first time since its opening weekend.  The film was usurped by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in its second weekend, but pulled in an impressive $17.6 million over the last three days for a domestic total of $251.9 million.  Guardians is now on track to best Captain America: The Winter Soldier as the highest grossing film of the year, stateside.

Hit the jump for the full Top 10 and analysis.

INTRUDERS Review: Secret Societies, Ghost Machines, and Unstoppable Assassins Abound in BBC America’s Body-Snatching Series

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“In the beginning, there was death.”  This is the mantra of BBC America’s new series Intruders, and the show makes good on that promise from the outset.  The body-snatching drama based on British novelist Michael Marshall Smith’s work spans multiple genres, from the ever-popular police procedural, to the vogue of supernatural deaths and rebirths, with elements of classic crowd-pleasers like secret societies, conspiracies, and yes, even creepy children.  While Intruders is sure to draw comparisons to The X-Files (which makes sense considering that the hit show’s producer Glen Morgan is both writer and executive producer of the new series), it’s much less episodic in nature and skews more toward the cult series Twin Peaks than anything else, thanks in part to its Pacific Northwest setting and layered mystery spiraling around its central plot.  

Hit the jump for my Intruders review, and for why you should welcome this show into your home when it debuts on BBC America tonight at 10pm ET. 

TOP 5: SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR, MEN, WOMEN & CHILDREN Trailer, Pierce Brosnan Plays GOLDENEYE 007, OUTCAST, Chinese Movie Theater Texting

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Available now on VOD and DVD is writer/director Joshua Zeman‘s urban legend documentary Killer Legends. For those who’ve seen Zeman’s solid 2009 effort Cropsey, Killer Legends is a continuation of the filmmaker’s interest not just in urban legends but in the real stories behind the tales. Rather than focus on one subject like its predecessor, though, Legends is made up of four vignettes each devoted to a true crime that helped shape some of our most widely recognized legends: The Candyman, The Killer Clown, The Babysitter Murders, and The Hookman. Individually, I found Zeman’s look at “The Hookman” and its ties to the “Moonlight Murders” of Texarkana in 1946 (the inspiration for Charles B. Pierce‘s The Town That Dreaded Sundown) to be the strongest of the four. On the whole, the doc is a fascinating project that seamlessly blends elements of crime, horror, and nostalgia as you recall the versions of the aforementioned legends that you were exposed to as a kid. Killer Legends is highly recommended if you’ve ever wondered where some of our most popular legends got their start.

All recommendations aside, this week’s Top 5 features interviews for and Matt’s review of Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, the first trailer for Jason Reitman‘s Men, Women & Children, Pierce Brosnan playing N64′s Goldeneye 007 with Jimmy Fallon, the first trailer for Outcast which features some absolute gems from Nicolas Cage, and a report claiming that Chinese movie theaters are looking for ways to integrate audience texts into the moviegoing experience. Keep reading for a brief recap and link to each of the above.

BOND 24 Villain Could Be a Bigger Adversary for Daniel Craig

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I’m one of the people who thought Skyfall was an incredible Bond film.  Between that and Casino Royale (I sort of consider Quantum of Solace to be an interstitial film, almost a short) I actually feel like James Bond is almost a current, relevant character (despite some of the old-fashioned fan service).  So I remain excited for Bond 24 even though it feels like something of a troubled production (the delays, the extensive reworking of the script etc…) because I think Sam Mendes and Daniel Craig really got it right last time.

We last heard that  Léa Seydoux (Blue is the Warmest Color) was in talks to join the film and now we have another bit of casting info on one of the villains of the piece that doesn’t result in a particular performer just yet, but it does indicate a certain (almost retro) direction the franchise could be headed in.  Hit the jump for more on the latest Bond villain.

Watch: 20-Minute GOTHAM Featurette Delves Deep into the Upcoming Origin Story Series

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The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards will be held this coming Monday, which means the 2014-15 TV season is fast approaching.  One of the new shows that many are curious about is Fox’s Gotham.  The series is essentially a Batman origin story without Batman, as it follows a young James Gordon (Ben McKenzie) as he works to clean up the city of Gotham.  The show will introduce a gallery of classic Batman villains from The Penguin to The Riddler to Poison Ivy, and we even get a very young Catwoman.  I’m curious to see how this show can sustain itself if it’s mostly made up of teases and hints and in-jokes (again, Batman will not materialize), and a new 20-minute Gotham featurette offers a behind-the-scenes look at how showrunner Bruno Heller and the cast see this story unfolding.  The constant “wink-wink” nature could get old fast, so hopefully the focus can remain on Gordon without relying too much on references to the more familiar aspects of Batman lore that we’ll never see.

Hit the jump to watch the new Gotham featurette.  The show also stars David MazouzDonal LogueBarbara Kean, Jada Pinkett SmithRobin Lord TaylorCamren BicondovaSean PertweeCory Michael Smith, and Zabryna Guevara.  Gotham premieres this fall on Fox.

Allison and Adam Predict the 2014 Primetime Emmy Winners

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It was another fantastic year for television, and the 2014 Emmy nominations mostly captured that (…more or less). But when it comes to winners, the Emmys can be a wily beast, as seen in last year’s bevy of baffling wins (Jeff Daniels for NewsroomBobby Cannavale for Boardwalk Empire, among others).  Expect the expected with the Emmys, usually — unless they go completely off the wall.

This year, I have requested the expertise of Collider’s own Adam Chitwood to assist me with picks, not only because he closely follows the awards circuit year-round, he also has a much better track record than I do for picking awards winners in general.  Hit the jump for our guesses about how the results will play out and why in our 2014 Emmy predictions.  The 66th Primetime Emmy Awards, hosted by Seth Meyers, will air live on NBC Monday, August 25th at 8pm ET/5pm PT.

An Introduction to SHAZAM: What Is Dwayne Johnson’s Superhero Debut All About?

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SHAZAM!  With the recent word that Dwayne Johnson will most likely be playing a major role in an upcoming Warner Brothers. adaptation of the comic character Shazam aka Captain Marvel, now seems like a good time to go over what this comic involves, exactly.  Including who is “The Big Red Cheese”, his arch nemesis Black Adam, and which stories are the best “go-to’s” to learn more about both of these characters.  At present, Johnson says he has yet to decide whether he’ll be the hero or the villain of the picture, but rest assured, he’s certainly built and has the charisma to play either.  Hit the jump learn more about Shazam and the upcoming Shazam movie.

Stephen Gaghan Set to Direct the Pilot for AMC’s Geopolitical Drama WHITE CITY

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Academy Award winning screenwriter Stephen Gaghan is a busy guy right now.  Not only does he have Matthew McConaughey nearing a deal to star in his upcoming feature, Gold, but now he’s also gearing up to direct and executive produce an AMC pilot, too.  It’s called White City and is being described as a geopolitical drama about Western diplomats and journalists in Afghanistan.  We last reported on it well over a year ago when it was amongst a list of shows AMC had in development.

The concept comes from co-writers and co-executive producers Nick McDonell and John Dempsey.  McDonell wrote the book Twelve, which was adapted into a film that hopefully you’ve forgotten by now.  He also worked as a journalist, covering Iraq and Afghanistan.  Dempsey is a former resident of Kabul who became a senior advisor on Afghanistan.  Hit the jump for more on what they’ve got in the works.

John Simm and James Frain Talk INTRUDERS, the Unsettling Tone, Providing Answers by the End of Season 1, and More

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From writer/executive producer Glen Morgan (The X-Files), the BBC America drama series Intruders is about a secret society devoted to chasing immortality by seeking refuge in the bodies of others.  A missing wife (Mira Sorvino), an assassin (James Frain) covering his crimes and a child (Millie Brown) on the run are all seemingly unrelated, but will intertwine to reveal a conspiracy that will lead former LAPD cop Jack Whelan (John Smith) question everything.

During this exclusive interview with Collider, actors John Simm and James Frain talked about what attracted them to Intruders, having a brilliant novel to work from, trusting in their creative team, the show’s unsettling tone, that they will provide answers by the end of the season, and what’s to come for their characters.  Check out what they had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.

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