2015 SAG awards: images and winners list

logo_banner.jpg_rgbLast night was the 21st Annual SAG awads, and it was, as always, a Who’s Who of acting talent.  I could blah blah, but y’all want pictures and a list of winners.  I would too.  So?  Check out the photos below, courtesy of the Guild.  Read on for the full list of winners…and CONGRATULATIONS to winners and all nominees!

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Off the Shelf — Rat Queens Volume 1: Sass and Sorcery

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Nutshell: Inappropriate, raunchy, with dialogue that’s borderline NSFW?  Yes please. Gorgeous art, an addictive story, great dialogue and lovely letters.  Leaves you wanting more, which is the highest compliment I can give a series.  If this is the new face of fantasy comics, I’m all in. Grade: A

Story: Four badass fighters for hire have to clear the forest of goblins.  Think D&D, but with way more cursing and booze.  And I don’t know about you, but my D&D days were filled with cursing and booze.  Filled.

Best Lines:

“Did you seriously pack candy and drugs for dinner?”
“What’s with men and tentacles?  Sick of this shit.”
“You put an arrow in my favorite boob, fuckwit!”

Thoughts:  I used to play D&D.  Didn’t we all?  *crickets*  Anyway, if I were to play nowadays, this is how I’d want to play it; a gang of whipsmart gals who are into sex, drugs and violence, and give zero fucks if you’re down with that or not.  This is the D&D you wish you could play, with characters that’ll launch a thousand cosplays come Comic-Con.  Rat Queens are what Xena, Warrior Princess would be if she had a gang of galpals, no edit button, and a predilection for illicit substances.  Yeah, definitely awesome.

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AMC does it again: missed Oscar pics? Best Picture Showcase arrives February 14th and 21st!

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I love me some awards shows.  And I love to catch the movies that get tapped for Best Picture.  This year’s crop is a good one too: The Grand Budapest Hotel, Whiplash, Birdman, Selma, Boyhood, The Theory of Everything, The Imitation Game and American Sniper.  So when I was asked if there’d be a Best Picture marathon this year, I began to snoop the interwebs.  And bingo!  February 14th and 21st at AMC theaters y’all.  Here’s the deets from AMC:

See the Best Picture nominees before the Oscars® and predict the winner like a pro.

We’re splitting the movies into two-consecutive Saturdays, so you can attend one day, or both days. Or, enjoy all the films in one day with the 24-hour marathon in select markets.

So, if you’re busy on Valentine’s Day, get your marathon on on the 21st.  Security Square, Owings Mills and White Marsh will have both the two-day fest and the 24 hour marathon.  Personally, I’m dying to hit DC for the Uptown marathon.  Megascreen!  And also, balcony seats.  Balcony seats rock y’all.  Grab your tickets — and if you’re going on Valentine’s Day, an aisle buddy — and get your Oscar on!

Anyone else just wanna show up to the theater in a onesie, with blanket and pillow?  Just me?

And if there’s any info on the Oscar nominated short films — usually shown at The Charles each year — I’ll letcha know.

Off the Shelf — Frankenstein (Dover Graphic Novel Classics)

Frankenstein Dover Classics

Nutshell: A quick refresher for fans of the story, though grown-ups may wish for a tale they can really dig into.  A perfect intro to the story for kids ready to get their classic scare on. Grade: B

Story: A man in the arctic collapses while on a search for “a demon”.  As he recuperates, he tells the sailors who rescued him a strange tale of how he tried to play god and create life.  To nothing but disastrous results, naturally.  You know the deal.

Thoughts: Only 50 pages?  Sweet!  Er, I mean seems like it’ll be a cool abridged version.  The intro even tells readers they can color the pages if they’d like.  (The book is described as for readers 8 and up.  So don’t expect gore y’all.)  Green’s artwork has that coloring book/woodblock print vibe, with plenty of space for your own personal colors, without too much worry about coloring outside the lines due to intricacies.

As far as the story goes, it actually benefits from Green’s edits, moving the pace forward quickly, serving the panel format perfectly.  Victor Frankenstein is still a douchebag that abandons his creation as soon as he realizes that it’s not just a pipe dream, and The Creature’s pain and thirst for vengeance against the “father” that slighted him is palpable.

The story ends rather abruptly, but what do you expect for 50 pages?  Still, the main storyline — man vs. creature he created, themes of overreaching, longing for family/acceptance, and vengeance — are all here.  As a grown-ass woman, I’d have liked a more in-depth graphic interpretation of the tale.  But this Frankenstein is perfect for young readers.  Violence is off-panel, and though the characters are all shades of grey, children will most likely see “moster bad, victor good”.  That’s a decent start; let ‘em pick apart narrative later.

Publication 411: TPB published 11/19/2014.

[NOTE: I received a copy of this title pre-publication via Netgalley.  I received no compensation for my review.]

First pics: Leonardo DiCaprio in The Revenant

More January movie drops, but with a twist; this time it’s The Revenant, based on a true story and starring Leonardo DiCaprio.  NO trailer or poster yet, but as this is a January 2016 release that’s not a surprise.

Here’s the synopsis:

Deep in the uncharted American wilderness, trapper Hugh Glass (Leonardo DiCaprio) is severely injured and left for dead by a traitorous member of his team, John Fitzgerald (Tom Hardy).  With sheer will as his only weapon, Glass must navigate a hostile environment, a brutal winter, and warring Native American tribes in relentless quest to survive and exact vengeance on Fitzgerald. Based on a true story, THE  REVENANT is directed and co-written by renowned filmmaker Alejandro González Iñárritu (“Birdman,” “Babel”).

Any DiCaprio fans looking forward to this?  ‘Til next January, feast your eyes…

THE REVENANT THE REVENANT

Baltimore Screening Pass-palooza: The DUFF

the duffLike teen comedies like She’s All That, Mean Girls, Princess Diaries, or any other film where there’s a bunch of gorgeous girls and one that seems pushed to the side?  Wonder what would happen if that girl got the spotlight?  The DUFF plans on giving you a look. Here’s the synopsis:

Bianca (Mae Whitman) is a content high school senior whose world is shattered when she learns the student body knows her as ‘The DUFF’ (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) to her prettier, more popular friends (Skyler Samuels & Bianca Santos). Now, despite the words of caution from her favorite teacher (Ken Jeong), she puts aside the potential distraction of her crush, Toby (Nick Eversman), and enlists Wesley (Robbie Amell), a slick but charming jock, to help reinvent herself. To save her senior year from turning into a total disaster, Bianca must find the confidence to overthrow the school’s ruthless label maker Madison (Bella Thorne) and remind everyone that no matter what people look or act like, we are all someone’s DUFF.

Interested?  Of course; so read on for how to score passes…

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Desert Dancer images and poster

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Here’s a new film for the US that’s been out and about in Europe for awhile.  Sounds like a very compelling story.

Here’s the synopsis (from Wikipedia):

Set in Iran, this powerful and unbelievable true story follows the brave ambition of Afshin Ghaffarian. During the volatile climate of the 2009 presidential election, where many cultural freedoms were threatened, Afshin and some friends (including Elaheh played by Freida Pinto) risk their lives and form an underground dance company. Through banned online videos, they learn from timeless legends who cross all cultural divides, such as- Michael Jackson, Gene Kelly and Rudolf Nureyev. Afhsin and Elaheh also learn much from each other, most importantly how to embrace their passion for dance and for one another

Desert Dancer should be coming to local theaters soon, but I haven’t seen any word on Baltimore release dates as of yet.  The images look amazing though, don’t they?

Frieda Pinto and Reece Ritchie

Freida Pinto and Reece Ritchie

(Photos: Desert Dancer Productions Ltd.)

(Photos: Desert Dancer Productions Ltd.)

Reece Ritchie and Frieda Pinto

Reece Ritchie and Freida Pinto

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