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Making It (2018)
Waste of time.
Without a doubt, one of the worst new shows on TV. As a summertime filler, it is simply a waste of brain cells. Poehler should be embarrassed.
A.P. Bio (2018)
Why is this show on the air?
Having read some of the IMDB reviews, I thought 'A.P. Bio' was going to be hilarious. Not only is it not funny, it's awful. Not only is the entire half-hour show not humorous, there isn't even the occasional comedic one-liner. Since Patton Oswalt is such a brilliant comedy actor, I thought his being on this show would be validation of its quality. I was wrong.
Gave the show a VERY generous 2* out of 10 ~ basically because I feel bad Oswalt now has this on his resume.
Absolutely LOVE this show!!!
What a fascinating look at seeing how profiling was developed at the F.B.I. And the fact that they use the stories of actual serial killers instead of fictional ones makes it even more realistic and intriguing. The frightening thing is how much material they have to work with ~ the dozens of serial killers we're aware of...and the thousands we've yet to discover.
I will admit that I've watched the entire first season two times now. Without fail, there was always some nuance, facial expression or background music from that time period that I'd missed that made it worth watching again.
The only thing that frustrated me about 'Mindhunter' is that there weren't more episodes to watch right now. I have to believe that a season two is in the works, as each episode eerily opens up with a scene of the BTK killer in Kansas. Looking forward to Manson, Berkowitz, and the myriad of other deranged killers the show (unfortunately) has to pick from. Gladly gave 10* out of 10.
Light-hearted fluff ~
Let's be honest ~ "Deception" is very similar to show's that have come before it ("Castle")? But it's really not THAT horrible. It's actually fun to see the gimmicks they design to 'solve' crimes.
This show won't win any awards, and probably won't be around for more than just one season. So take it for what's its worth...a mindless hour of passable entertainment.
Living Biblically (2018)
Canned laughter disaster...
'Living Biblically' had the potential to be funny. There's no other show like it on TV, so it didn't open itself up to comparisons ~ like every medical, law and police drama out there. So how did 'Living Biblically' fail so miserably? The atrocious writing followed up by a horrific canned laughter soundtrack. It explains to me why this show wasn't filmed in front of a 'live studio audience'. Unless the chairs were filled with crickets chirping, there would be complete silence...or snoring.
This review wasn't based on just the latest episode, but every one up until now, hoping ('praying') the show would improve. My truth here is that there won't be another episode of 'Living Biblically' watched in this house. Gave the show a VERY generous 1* out of 10.
Sneaky Pete (2015)
First season SO much better!!!
Usually with TV shows, the second season is the best one. You've gotten to know the characters, and most of the kinks have been worked out. 'Sneaky Pete' was so great in its first season, I was thrilled to hear it had been renewed. Unfortunately season two is simply far-fetched and even worse, boring.
Where season one was purely ingenious, season two is simply moronic. Perhaps it's because the great Bryan Cranston is not in it again, but I think it's more than that. It's as if the creators had a great premise for a show and this should have been a mini-series, not a seasonal show counting on renewals.
To say I'm disappointed is an understatement. I love Margo Martindale, Jacob Pitts, and Joseph Lyle Taylor ("Justified"), and Alison Wright ("The Americans"). With season one being so fantastic I thought season two would be even more spectacular. Sadly I was wrong.
The Crossing (2018)
Great premiere episode!
I'll admit I was hooked after seeing the first fully clothed body washed up on the shoreline ~ was it from a capsized boat...a downed airliner? Then you see another body, and another. Why are some people dead yet some still alive? Why do none of the bodies show any evidence of injury?
The town's sheriff seems just as perplexed as notifies a federal agency who takes over. From interviewing the survivors, it seems like these folks are from the distant future (150 years from now) ~ fleeing an oppressive, war-torn country...The United States!!!
Rounded up and put into temporary housing, it couldn't help but remind me of what we did to the Japanese in World War 2, isolate and contain what you don't understand. It also reminded me of another supernatural ABC Show , 'Lost'.
It's apparent that some (all?) of these individuals possess super-human physical abilities...nor, we learn at the very end of the first episode, are they the first of their kind to travel back to the early 21st century!
It seems like time-travel shows are in fashion again, and from what I've seen in just week one, I think 'The Crossing' has a good chance of being one of those successful shows!
Having loved Alan Cumming in 'The Good Wife', I was excited to see he was returning to network TV in a new show, 'Instinct'. But after giving it four episodes to see if it would hopefully get better, I can guarantee there won't be a fifth.
'Instinct' committed the cardinal TV show sin...it's boring! There is absolutely no chemistry between the two leads, the storylines are disjointed, and there is nothing that makes you look forward to this show each week.
Perhaps Cumming is inbetween paychecks and that's why he took this gig...or maybe he owed someone a HUGE favor. Either way, it wasn't for the quality or content of this show. What an incredibly sad waste of a gifted actor. Gave 2 VERY generous * out of 10.
Girls Trip (2017)
This movie is an insult to the entire black community. It is FILLED with racial stereotypes, unnecessary foul language and revolting sight gags.
Perhaps the writers were intending on capitalizing on the success of 'Bridesmaids' with this horrible movie. The worst thing is the screen time they wasted on four phenomenal actresses ~ and their dignity.
Alex, Inc. (2018)
One season and done.
With all the comedy show's viewers have available to them each week, I can't see them tuning into 'Alex, Inc'. after one viewing.
Fans of 'Scrubs' might remember Braff narrating each episode...and he does the same thing here. Hey, if the premise worked once why not do it again? Because it's old and stale, that's why. Very 90's.
The storyline isn't fresh either. A guy gets sick of working at his corporate job and decides to venture out on his own ~ deceiving his wife in the process. Honestly can't recommend this show, or give it more than 3*.
Station 19 (2018)
Chicago Fire Wannabee Fails Miserably
Perhaps because 'Scandal' is coming to an end, and 'Grey's Anatomy' is in its 56th+ season, Shondra Rimes is looking for a new venture to undertake. If she's trying to turn Seattle into what Dick Wolf did with Chicago, 'Station 19' is a COLOSSAL fail.
Not only is the acting abysmal, the storylines are as well. Where 'Chicago Fire' is packed each week with firefighters/paramedics attending to car crashes, gas explosions, building fires, etc., ~ with the occasional romantic/personal situation thrown in, 'Station 19' is exactly the opposite ~ an hour long soap opera with the occasional fire related incident gratuitously worked into the plot line.
Note to Ms. Rimes: Just because you can, really doesn't mean you should. Gave a VERY generous 1* out of 10.
The Resident (2018)
Very Entertaining Show!
I liked 'The Resident' from its very first episode, and it's only gotten better each week.
I find there is more realism going on in this show than the public is probably aware exists. A older surgeon, whose passed his operating prime due to a yet unknown health condition (has extremely debilitating tremors in his operating hand), has his minions perform the successful surgeries yet takes credit for their success. Or the doctor who administers unneeded poisonous chemotherapy to patients simply to add to the hospitals bottom line from insurance company reimbursements. And yet other patients are released ASAP if they don't possess exceptional health care, as the hospital is not a to be considered a 'charity ward'.
I find 'The Resident' to be one of the more realistic medical dramas on TV today, and honestly hope it gets picked up for a second season. Gave 8* out of 10.
The Good Doctor (2017)
Really enjoy this show!
Although I will admit it took a while not to view the lead character Shawn Murphy (Freddie Highmore) as Norman Bates from 'Bates Motel', his excellent acting skills lead you to believe he is genuinely a practicing physician on the autistic spectrum.
An absolute genius in the medical field but lacking necessary social skills, it's endearing to see Highmore try to acclimate to societal norms while holding true to his superior medical knowledge. Although many of his colleagues were instantly dismissive of him practicing in the hospital, his numerous 'saves' with medical suggestions have brought them around...sort of. A few are still genuinely apprehensive.
How wonderful this show must be for parents who have children with this medical condition ~ that the world is not as close minded to these individuals as it once was. Gave 8* out of 10..
Sorry...don't get all the negativity!
9-1-1 is supposed to be a FICTIONALIZED show of calls 911 operators receive...it is NOT intended to be a realistic documentary.
Perhaps some of the viewers are offended by the same-sex relationships (both male and female) that take place on the show...or the older woman dating a much younger man. Although I find a lot of the stories poignant, I find just as many frightening.
9-1-1 definitely won't win any awards, but it's a pleasant way to spend one hour a week watching a show that's different from everything else the major networks seem to churn out these days. Gave 7* out of 10.
Although you might see some similarities to 'Friday Night Lights' in 'Rise', this show is completely different ~ although both shows ironically were created by the same individual.
A group of theatre students, encouraged by a teacher new to that department, decide to produce more challenging theatrical productions...such as the controversial 'Spring Awakenings'. This is completely unlike the acceptable standard fare of 'Grease' which they have performed year after year. Needless to say they are met with great resistance, as the play deals with issues such as same-sex relationships, abortion and promiscuity. Even more significantly, the fictional Stanton High (in Pennsylvania) lives and breathes its football, and one of its critical players wants to act in the plays which would take time away from his football practices.
In the first episode alone, 'Rise' dealt with teen homelessness, poverty and a transgendered individual. If you were hoping for a 'Friday Night Lights' comeback like so many shows are doing these days (Roseanne, Will and Grace, Hawaii 5-0), you'll be sadly disappointed. But if you're looking for an entertaining show that addresses some provocative subjects with heart, I think 'Rise' will leave you pleasantly surprised. And...as we've seen with the Parkland, Florida students in the last month, teenagers CAN affect a difference in our schools ~ and our thinking.
Good Girls (2018)
Mediocre at best...
Having just seen Christina Hendricks in 'Tin Star', I had high hopes for the quality of projects she's been taking since 'Mad Men'. Suffice it to say 'Good Girls' was sadly underwhelming.
The premise is ordinary ~ three women find themselves in desperate need of money due to various financial predicaments. To solve this problem they knock over a local grocery store, only to find it was owned by a money-laundering gang who wants their money back immediately.
With all the choices available for television viewers these days, I can't see many wasting their time on this mediocre offering. Gave a VERY generous 3* out of 10.
Officially jumped that shark!
At the beginning, 'Arrow' was a very entertaining, intelligent Marvel show. But the producers just didn't know when to stop (probably riding that gravy train), and now it's unwatchable. It's obvious they've run out of entertaining plot lines, and are simply filling up the screen with boring drivel.
Yes, I gave the show 7*, but that was for the shows first three seasons. As there is nothing offered in the negative star category, I can't rate it for the last two seasons.
It's time to stick a fork in 'Arrow'...it's (been) done.
A gift from India!
I am so glad I stumbled across this Indian TV show on Amazon! In short, the main character's son needs a lung transplant desperately, as he only has six months to live if he doesn't get one. So his adoring dad takes matters into his own hands to move his son up the transplant list by ingeniously killing (or trying to kill) all those in front of his son the transplant list.
What makes 'Breathe' so exciting are the devious methods he concocts to knock off his victims...and the people who have the misfortune of trying to unravel his plan
Having binged the first season in just two days, I was upset that there was no season two immediately available for viewing. I don't know how 'Breathe' faired with Indian audiences, but I certainly hope it is/was renewed for another season. There are subtitles of course, but please don't let that be a deterrent to you watching this great show! Yeah...it's that good!
The House (2017)
Without a doubt, one of the WORST movies I have ever seen. Poehler and Ferrell must have been desperate for money to be associated with this bomb. There are not enough negative adjectives in the dictionary to describe how bad this flick is. Avoid at all costs!!!
Father of Invention (2010)
Seriously...what was Spacey thinking?
I don't know if Kevin Spacey made this atrocious movie because he lost a bet, or was simply doing someone a favor, but it CAN'T be for the quality of the script!
Spacey plays the character Robert Axle, a 'fabricator' who invented a hazardous product that landed him in prison for 10 years. After he gets out, he reconnects with his daughter who wants nothing to do with him, and ditsy ex-wife who has burnt through the fortune he left behind trying to record an album (although completely tone deaf, but nobody will tell her).
Axle cleans up his disheveled prison look (complete with a man bun), to 'fabricate' a successful child finder wristwatch, which completely redeems his career.
If my review sounds like a complete mess, than I have accurately captured the essence of this movie. It's hard to believe the genius behind 'American Beauty' and 'The Usual Suspects' had anything to do with this incredible waste of time. Gave a VERY generous 2* out of 10.
Felicia's Journey (1999)
Brilliant psychological thriller!
I am SO glad I stumbled across "Felicia's Journey', as it is a fantastic diabolical thriller that reminds you of the films from the late-great Alfred Hitchcock!
I am intentionally not going into specifics about the rich, incredible story-line of this film. I do not want to alert the viewer to the shocks and gasps that one will unexpectedly encounter throughout the entire course of this movie! Saying it is both phenomenal and brilliant would be a major understatement.
Highly, highly recommend! 🎞
Age is JUST a number!!!
How fantastic to see seniors healthy, happy and energetic ~ doing things in their final years that some people can't do in their prime!
From jumping rope, to roller skating, to singing and dancing, these people are simply incredible in what they can still do. I don't hold anything against people who might have been professionals 50+ years ago, but still have 'it' today. One 93 year old female dancer from the vaudeville era had better legs than some 20 year olds today!
Quite frankly, I'm enjoying 'Forever Young' even more than Steve Harvey's original 'Big Shots'. It's great seeing seniors from around the world doing phenomenal things with their bodies and their minds. No bingo and banana pudding for these folks!
The American (2010)
Two hours of my life I can never get back...
Sometimes a George Clooney movie is excellent ('O Brother Where Art Thou'), quite good ('Michael Clayton') or moderately entertaining ('Up in the Air', any of the 'Oceans'), etc. Which is why I had no reservations watching 'The American'. Simply put...huge mistake.
What looked promising in the opening ten minutes turned out to be THE most exciting scene in the entire movie. Many adjectives can be applied to this film, and none of them are good ~ choppy, anticlimactic, boring... Perhaps the crux of 'The American' is that so many story lines remained open and unexplained at the conclusion of this disheveled mess for 'artistic sake'. I just found it to be a cinematic waste of Clooney's obvious acting talents.
Who knows, perhaps he was offered a fortune to take this forgettable role and that's why he did it. It certainly wasn't to enhance his body of work. In the end gave the flick a VERY generous 3* out of 10, only because both he and the scenery were enjoyable to look at.
United Shades of America (2016)
Interesting Documentary Show ~ from the black perspective
Now in its second season, CNN's series 'United Shades of America' addresses different issues throughout the country ~ with a completely different spin. Hosted by African-American standup comedian W. Kamau Bell, he presents things through a refreshingly different prism.
For example, Bell interviews white privilege advocate Richard Spencer, a neo-Nazi who abhors any race that is not his own, travels to Puerto Rico to talk to its residents about it becoming the 51st state, and what it's like to be a Muslim in small town America. It is interesting to hear stories reported by a person of color as they have insights to things that may be unknown to mainstream white America.
Past episodes have focused on people who have gone 'off the grid', what is entailed in buying a gun, and the dangerous street gangs of Chicago. All in all a very fascinating show, especially since it's addressed from a new perspective.
Heart-wrenching Coming-of-Age Story
'Moonlight' is the moving coming-of-age story of a young black boy, Chiron, who is having difficulty coming to terms with his sexuality, as well as the abuse he receives from his drug addicted mother.
Based on the semi-autobiographical book by Tarell Alvin McCraney ('In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue'), it explores three stages of Chiron's life ~ from the pre-teen years through adulthood. It focuses on topics such as homophobia, drug and child abuse, poverty, and inner-city crime. The first movie to feature an all-black cast, 'Moonlight' is both breathtakingly beautiful and incredibly tragic.
One highlight of the film was the portrayal of Juan by Mahershala Ali, a character who acts as the surrogate father to Chiron's non-existent one. Ali won a well-deserved Academy Award for his amazing performance in the film, along with 'Moonlight' itself winning the Oscar for Best Picture.
Everything from the music (R & B, hip-hop, classical), to the amazing photography, to the incredible performances delivered by the actors, indicates why this film was THE best of the last movie season.