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Archive for January, 2017

La La Land has tied with All About Eve and Titanic for the most Oscar nominations at 14.  The musical/romance film was nominated for Best Picture, Best Actress (Emma Stone), Best Actor (Ryan Gosling), and pretty much everything else it was eligible for.

The other Best Picture nominees were Arrival, Fences, Hacksaw Ridge, Hell or High Water, Hidden Figures, Moonlight, Lion and Manchester By The Sea.

Joining Stone in the Best Actress category are Meryl Streep (Florence Foster Jenkins), Isabelle Huppert (Elle), Ruth Negga (Loving), and Natalie Portman (Jackie).

Best Actor nominees are Gosling, Casey Affleck (Manchester By The Sea), Andrew Garfield (Hacksaw Ridge), Viggo Mortensen (Captain Fantastic), and Denzel Washington (Fences).

The nominees for Animated Feature Film include Moana, Kubo and the Two Strings, My Life as a Zucchini, The Red Turtle and Zootopia.

Deadpool was unfortunately shut out, even in the technical categories.  Doctor Strange received a nomination for Best Visual Effects.  Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was also nominated in that category as well as for Sound Mixing.

You can see a list of all the nominees here on the official website.

Congratulations to all!

#Oscars #DoctorStrange #LaLaLand

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The title for Star Wars‘ Episode VIII has just been revealed to be The Last Jedi.

The ending of Episode VII, The Force Awakens, sees Rey (Daisy Ridley) finding Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) where he’s been hiding since Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), Leia and Han’s son, turned to the Dark Side as Luke was training him along with other would-be Jedi.  Does The Last Jedi refer to Luke?  The last scene of The Force Awakens obviously sets up Rey to be trained by Luke.  I’m hoping this means there would then be two, and not that Luke will somehow meet his end in this film, leaving Rey.

As Radio Times helpfully points out, Luke is referred to as “the last Jedi” in The Force Awakens.  That and the fact that Mark Hamill is (at least rumored to be) in Episode IX, I’m breathing a little easier, but we will have to wait until December 15th to find out for certain.

I’m still not over Han Solo!

#StarWars #MarkHamill #DaisyRidley #TheLastJedi

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Last night the film La La Land and the television miniseries The Night Manager brought home some Golden Globes.

La La Land, the throwback musical film starring Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, won all eight Globes it was nominated for, including Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, and best performance nods for Stone and Gosling.

In the film drama category the winner was Moonlight.  Isabelle Huppert took home the Best Actress award for Elle and actor Casey Affleck won for Manchester By The Sea.

Zootopia won the award for Best Motion Picture – Animated.

Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Laurie won Globes for their performances in the AMC original miniseries The Night Manager.

The legendary Meryl Streep received this year’s Cecil B. DeMille Award.

You can see all the winners and nominees on the official Golden Globes website here.

#Golden Globes #LaLaLand #TheNightManager #TomHiddleston

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The Associates of Sherlock Holmes is an anthology of Holmes-related stories written by various authors.  There are 13 stories, and the book is edited by George Mann, who has himself written some Sherlock follow-on books, as well as scripts for the BBC.  He has also edited other Holmes anthologies and produced a number of other works.

assoc_of_sh_bookEach of the stories center around one of the supporting or minor characters from the original Conan Doyle stories, from lesser-known characters such as Inspector Stanley Hopkins and Helen Stoner from The Adventure of the Speckled Band to the more well-known Irene Adler and Sherlock’s brother Mycroft.

Because they’re from different authors the stories vary widely in whether the author attempts to write in Conan Doyle’s style or not (and whether that is achieved).  Some fell with a clunk with me and others I quite liked.

I would give this book maybe a 3.5 or 4 out of 5.  If you’re a Holmesophile this will give you some good reading, just expect that some stories will be better than others.

The Associates of Sherlock Holmes is published by Titan Books.

Image via Amazon.com

#SherlockHolmes #SirArthurConanDoyle

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Please note that this review of the first episode of Sherlock series 4, titled The Six Thatchers, contains all kinds of spoilers.  If you haven’t seen the episode don’t read any farther.  Fair warning!

I’m also not going to hold back in this review.  As much as I loved the first two series of Sherlock, it started to go off the rails in series three and it has now completed that unfortunate detour.  I wish I could say that after two years Sherlock is back and it’s great.  But unfortunately I can wipe this episode off my DVR and feel no pain.

When we last saw Sherlock (Benedict Cumberbatch) he had killed villain Charles Augustus Magnussen and it looked as though our hero would be banished from Britain.  Just four minutes later, however, he gets a reprieve and it turns out his brother Mycroft (Mark Gatiss, who also wrote the episode) and three others in the British government devised a plan to doctor the security footage of the deed to make it look as though someone else did it.  The reason they do it is that it appears villain Moriarty has made some plans from beyond the grave and they need Sherlock to save the day (brother Mycroft’s spies seem to never be enough, apparently).  Despite the many mentions of Moriarty, however, he really has nothing to do with the episode and is just thrown in for… well, I’m not sure why he’s thrown in.

There is an actual case to be solved, the case of The Six Thatchers, which is a takeoff on the original Conan Doyle story The Adventure of the Six Napoleons.  In the original story six identical busts of Napoleon are shattered and Sherlock works out that a missing and valuable pearl was placed in one of them during manufacturing while they were still wet.  After the busts had been sold the thief had to hunt down and break them all to find it.  This story is speedily dispensed with in The Six Thatchers, with busts of old Maggie standing in for Napoleon.  Instead of a pearl, though, what’s found in the bust is a duplicate of the flash drive that was destroyed in the last series that has details of Mary Watson (Amanda Abbington) and her former assassin team’s info on it.

And here’s where we go off the rails.

(more…)

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