Tag: Glenn Close (Page 2 of 2)

Please, won’t you lend a television critic a hand?

The Television Critics Association has officially begun the gearing-up process for its 25th annual awards, which will honor the finest work of the 2008-09 season as selected by the association’s 200-plus member critics and journalists. One of those members is yours truly, and I figured I’d see what the readers of Premium Hollywood had to say about the nominations and who they’d like to see win the various categories. I’ll have to submit my votes by June 10th, but since the winners won’t be announced until August 1st (the ceremony takes place at The Langham Huntington Hotel and Spa in Pasadena, CA, with Chelsea Handler opening the ceremony), so speak up quickly. There are a couple of things I’m on the fence about, and I’d be interested to hear your thoughts before I make my final selections.

PROGRAM OF THE YEAR

* “Battlestar Galactica” (SciFi Channel)
* “Lost” (ABC)
* “Mad Men” (AMC)
* “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)
* “The Shield” (FX)

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN COMEDY

* “30 Rock” (NBC)
* “The Big Bang Theory” (CBS)
* “The Daily Show” (Comedy Central)
* “How I Met Your Mother” (CBS)
* “The Office” (NBC)

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN DRAMA

* “Breaking Bad” (AMC)
* “Friday Night Lights” (NBC/DirecTV)
* “Lost” (ABC)
* “Mad Men” (AMC)
* “The Shield” (FX)

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT MOVIES, MINI-SERIES AND SPECIALS

* Summer Olympic Coverage (NBC)
* “24: Redemption” (Fox)
* “Generation Kill” (HBO)
* “Grey Gardens” (HBO)
* “Taking Chance” (HBO)

OUTSTANDING NEW PROGRAM OF THE YEAR

“Fringe” (Fox)
“The Mentalist” (CBS)
“No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency” (HBO)
“True Blood” (HBO)
“United States of Tara” (Showtime)

INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT IN COMEDY

* Alec Baldwin (“30 Rock”)
* Steve Carell (“The Office”)
* Tina Fey (“30 Rock”)
* Neil Patrick Harris (“How I Met Your Mother”)
* Jim Parsons (“The Big Bang Theory”)

INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT IN DRAMA

* Glenn Close (“Damages”)
* Bryan Cranston (“Breaking Bad”)
* Walton Goggins (“The Shield”)
* Jon Hamm (“Mad Men”)
* Hugh Laurie (“House”)

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN CHILDREN’S PROGRAMMING

* “Camp Rock” (The Disney Channel)
* “The Electric Company” (PBS)
* “Nick News” (Nickelodeon)
* “Sid the Science Kid” (PBS)
* “Yo Gabba Gabba” (Nickelodeon)

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN NEWS & INFORMATION

* “60 Minutes” (CBS)
* “The Alzheimer’s Project” (HBO)
* “Frontline” (PBS)
* “The Rachel Maddow Show” (MSNBC)
* “We Shall Remain” (PBS)

HERITAGE AWARD

* “ER” (NBC)
* “M*A*S*H” (CBS)
* “Saturday Night Live” (NBC)
* “The Shield” (FX)
* “Star Trek” (NBC)

Fatal Attraction

Despite a premise that reads like a sci-fi film – Michael Douglas steps outside his marriage to Anne Archer with Glenn Close? In the peak of her “George Washington with a perm” phase, no less? – “Fatal Attraction” is actually a tremendously effective sexual thriller, one that remains not only a high point of the genre, but the apex of director Adrian Lyne’s career. Lyne, who has a tendency to get lost in his own fog machines, puts his visual brilliance to good use here, mixing in the usual stuff (billowing curtains, colored lights, smoke) with a delicately crafted, steadily building tension and a trio of excellent performances from Douglas, Close, and Archer. Misogynistic? Perhaps. Deserving of a Best Picture nomination? Doubtful. Two hours of sleek, (mostly) believable thrills? Absolutely.

The new Blu-ray transfer gives the movie a gorgeous 1080p facelift and a 5.1 Dolby TrueHD audio mix, but not much else; though “Fatal Attraction” comes with a healthy selection of bonus materials, including a commentary track from Lyne, an alternate ending, screen test footage, and some featurettes discussing the making of the film and its social impact, they’re all holdovers from the last DVD reissue, which is going for under $10 new at Amazon. What it boils down to – as seems to be the case all too often with these catalog Blu-ray titles – is whether you think it’s worth an extra $10-$15 to watch the movie in high-def. Unless you’ve always wanted to count the hairs on a boiled rabbit, your money is probably better spent elsewhere.

Click to buy “Fatal Attraction”

Old Show, New Season: “Damages”

If we were to organize those readers of Premium Hollywood who’ve watched the entire first season of “Damages” into two groups – the ones who watched it when it originally aired and the ones who watched it when it came out on DVD – and took a quick poll about why the latter group watched it on DVD, I’d guess a sizable number of people would say one of two things:

1. I missed the premiere, and when I tried to pick up the series a few episodes in, I felt like I’d already missed too much.
2. I missed an episode during the season, and I knew I’d never be able to figure out what happened, so I just decided to wait for the DVD.

Yeah, it’s true: “Damages” is that kind of show…and I should know, having been one of the people who missed the premiere. But when I got the Season 1 DVD set, I blew threw it as quickly as my schedule allowed. It was an enthralling thriller which managed to be that rare breed of legal drama which almost never set foot in a courtroom, with gripping performances from Glenn Close, Ted Danson, Rose Byrne, and Željko Ivanek and many a moment that left you breathless. In the end, Ellen Parsons (Byrne) went through hell and back, leading her to declare war on Patty Hewes (Close) by teaming with the FBI to bring her down from the inside, all the while maintaining a front and pretending to be her number-one employee.

Season 2 begins in approximately the same chronological manner as Season 1, starting in the present with a jarring opening scene, then jumping back in time to begin the process of explaining how things got to that point in the first place. How odd it feels, though, for the initial flashback scene to show Patty Hewes making an appearance on “Live with Regis and Kelly.” Not that we haven’t gotten the impression that Patty’s a major public figure in the world of law, but it feels rather jarring to see her in the comparatively day-glo lights of the “Live” stage. Still, you can also imagine it setting Patty up for a big fall when she waves Ellen onto the stage and declares to the studio audience and the millions of viewers watching at home that she’d be lost without her.

But will Patty fall this season? Well, if she doesn’t, it certainly won’t be for lack of Ellen trying to make it happen. “You just want to arrest Patti Hughes,” she says to her two FBI contacts. “I want to destroy her.”

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