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  • Caryn James
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    Ryan Murphy's Stunning, Campier-Than-Glee "American Horror Story"

    Sex, ghosts, murder and old movies create a post-modern, post-Gothic swirl in FX’s stunning new series American Horror Story. Co-created by Ryan Murphy (Nip/Tuck ) and Brad Falchuk (Murphy's co-creator on Glee), the story of a damaged family and a haunted house is more macabre than Nip/Tuck and has a higher-than-Glee camp quotient. You can’t be seriously terrified of a show in which the housekeeper – Frances Conroy channeling Mrs. Danvers in Rebecca – finds yet another body in the basement and wearily deadpans to her cohorts, “You get the shovel, I’ll get the bleach.”

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    More: TV Reviews
  • The Playlist
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    Martin Scorsese's Cut Of 'Margaret' Longer Than Current Version; Producer Turned Down TIFF Premiere

    After six years of legal battles and editing bay drama, Fox Searchlight finally released Kenneth Lonergan's long awaited "Margaret" this weekend in a handful of theaters. Pushed by a marketing campaign that could generously be called "modest," the film opened to fairly dismal numbers and even though it will rollout to more cities next weekend, the extended imbroglio seems to earned the movie a quiet death. Except, in the court of law, the saga of "Margaret" is not over (more on that in a second) but moreover, for anyone who has seen the film, the news that a longer version of Lonergan's film never made it to screens will be an added frustration to a picture that flirts with greatness only to become unhinged in its wild second half (indeed, it split The Playlist team in half).

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  • Women and Hollywood
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    Melissa McCarthy Hosts SNL

    I'm traveling abroad so I can't access some of the clips that look so great, but I will put in links to sites that you can access in case you missed the show. From posts on the blogosphere it looked like she kicked butt, was fearless and the good news is the ratings were up from last week.

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  • Shadow and Act
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    The "Queen Hussy" Chronicles w/ Pete Chatmon: Issue 2

    Just a little over 2 months after wrapping principal photography, my team and I are proud to announce the premiere of Queen Hussy Episode 1: Puss N Boots (yesterday @ 9am). The amount of talent and hard work contributed to this project has been phenomenal. Favor upon favor upon favor from folks I personally look forward to paying on future work.

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  • The Playlist
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    Last-Minute Reshoots Saved James Franco's Character From Death In 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes'

    We're not sure that there was a bigger surprise this year than "Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes." A tired franchise, from a creative-interference-happy studio, with a green director and a plot straight from "Deep Blue Sea?" Even without the initially unpromising trailers, it looked like a late-summer flop. But happily, it was nothing of the kind: the film became easily the warmest-received blockbusters of the summer, launched director Rupert Wyatt onto the A-list, and has taken an impressive $400 million haul; not bad for a film that allegedly cost less than many of its tentpole competitors. A franchise was (re)born.

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  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
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    NYFF: Roman Polanski's "Carnage"

    On paper, it’s easy to see why Yasmina Reza’s Tony award–winning play God of Carnage might have appealed to Roman Polanski, who with Reza has adapted the play and directed it into Carnage, a brisk, amusing, and frustrating cinematic chamber drama. A claustrophobic bourgeois horror story about two couples of Brooklyn parents who meet over cobbler and coffee after one of their sons strikes the other with a stick, Reza’s play has superficial similarities to previous Polanski films like Rosemary’s Baby, Cul-de-Sac, and Repulsion, each of which places its protagonists in confined spaces over extended periods of time and observes as the carefully calibrated identities they present to the outside world slowly come apart at the seams. Read Chris Wisniewski's review of Carnage.

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  • Press Play
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    MATT ZOLLER SEITZ: HOMELAND: Best new show of the fall?

    Showtime's "Manchurian Candidate"-style CIA thriller pushes against the cliches of espionage TV By Matt Zoller Seitz Press Play contributor

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    More: Television
  • Shadow and Act
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    VOODOO Comic Book Debuts With Controversy and THE FURY OF FIRESTORM Instantly Blasts Away

    In the final week of the first month of ‘The New 52’, or the easier to say DCnU (as the fans named it) reboot of the DC Comics’ universe of characters with the canceling of all existing books and retooling them with modern versions of fan favorites (most notably a extreme shift in the Superman family of books) and new #1 issues, the so-called sexist portrayal of women gets way ahead of costume changes and the like with Voodoo #1’s release. (SPOILERS AHEAD)

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  • Shadow and Act
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    The Mathematics Of Movie-Making, Hollywood Studio-Style! (Things That Make You Go Hmm...)

    As I've already said in recent posts, there's quite a bit of *old* S&A content sitting on our former site (going back to our beginnings in April 2009) that I'll be reposting here at our new location - content that I think remains relevant and topical, speaking to or addressing discussions we've had, and continue to have here on S&A.

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  • Thompson on Hollywood
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    Strike Back Episode 7: Expect the Unexpected

    Strike Back Episode 7: Expect the Unexpected

    Strike Back's heroes are far from perfect; reviewer David Chute admires their resilience in responding to the unexpected. “Is this normal?” asks an appalled European Union hostage in Kosovo at the midpoint of Episode 7 of Strike Back. It's an obvious question, after the third or fourth wrenching plot reversal has turned everything upside down yet again; when everything is right on the verge of going irretrievably FUBAR. Section 20 operative Damien Scott (Sullivan Stapleton), in a grace-under-pressure, “come to think of it” sort of way, says, "well, yeah." For Scott and his comrade in arms, Michael Stonebridge (Philip Winchester), this life-threatening swirl of menace, this sense of being trapped inside a cyclone, is just another day at the office.

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    More: TV, Reviews, HBO