Trailer: Romeo and Juliet (2013)

The problem with Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is that the story is so well-known, to do another movie version means it’s not going to be that much different from any other versions already out there.

The most popular – and one of my favourite ever movies – Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet is the benchmark and I think it would be pretty hard to beat.

Italian director Carlo Carlei is the latest to take on Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers with screenplay from Downton Abbey scribe and Oscar winner Julian Fellowes. According to IMDb this is Carlei’s first foray into a big production, previously directing foreign-language and television movies.

Hailee Steinfield and Douglas Booth

Hailee Steinfield and Douglas Booth

The trailer itself is basically the whole movie, it puzzles me why some companies do this because it doesn’t necessarily entice an audience to want to pay to watch something when they know the story so well that it is laid out in the trailer. However, Romeo and Juliet was filmed entirely on location in Italy, just like the original Oscar-winning Franco Zeffirelli version so what will be different about this movie?

Well for starters the main cast are a mixture of veterans and hot newbies; you have Douglas Booth as Romeo cheekbones and eyebrows at the forefront, the very young already Oscar-nominated Hailee Steinfield as Juliet, Golden Globe winner Damien Lewis with a super dodgy haircut as Lord Capulet, Oscar-nominated and the simply great Paul Giamatti as Friar Laurence; along with the dashing Ed Westwick (most familiarly known as Chuck from Gossip Girl) as the main antagonist Tybalt.

Can this fresh cast bring something new to the Shakespeare tale that has been done so many times before?

Will the controversy surrounding the sex scene between 16-year-old Steinfield and a 20-year-old Booth be a hindrance or overlooked for the authenticity?

Only the box office totals will tell us the answer after it is released in October later this year.

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It’s September… again. Television time!

I think its just the way I’m wired, or the fact my mum is a teacher, but September still feels like the beginning of a new year.

It always was when you were at school, college and then university. Now, even though I am *regretfully* not at any of these institutions anymore, my brain still works in school years.

It also helps that in the television world September is the beginning of new pilots and returning shows after the summer hiatus. Even though in this hiatus we were very gratefully given two of the best continuing television shows ever – Pretty Little Liars (PLL) and Teen Wolf (TW).

Tyler Hoechlin as Derek in Teen Wolf. Check out the hilarious recaps from Price Peterson over at TV.com

I will miss these shows until 2013, although the highly-anticipated PLL Halloween episode is just around the corner, and in their place comes some of my favourite returning shows and those new pilots that the American television channels hope will capture the right audience and keep those all important ratings.

Last year I listed my shows in an ingenious way and of course I’ll do that again with an update of those shows that failed to make my grade (or got cancelled)…

Wouldn’t miss if my life depended on it:

  • Fringe – sadly this is the fifth and final season for my favourite show. Pacey will rise again.
  • Revenge – this show has been bumped from ‘Could fall at the first hurdle’ to an absolute must-watch. Last year I felt that this might not do well because it had no big names, I couldn’t have been more wrong. This show ranks in my top five shows throughout the year. Solid storylines, fantastic acting from Madeleine Stowe as Emily VanCamp’s arch nemesis Victoria Grayson, top fashion in the form of Brit actress and my new style/life crush Ashley Madekwe, the boys and scandal. (Currently airing in the UK on E4)
  • Awkward – coming to its summer season finale soon this is just a funny funny show. #TeamMatty all the way.
  • Teen Wolf  – as mentioned above it is one of the best television shows MTV has come out with seriously worth a watch if not for all the abs and nakedness… Returns in summer 2013 😦
  • Pretty Little Liars – Just had its mid-season finale which was mind-blowing, jaw-drop to the floor, oh my god so good. Please watch from the beginning. (Airs on UK Really channel on Freeview, not sure when its returning)

Must-watch:

  • Supernatural – This show has been downgraded I’m afraid. I do love the show and have been a faithful Jared/Jensen fan for many years now, but this show is coming into its 8th season and it lost its juice way back in season five. I still watch it and every now and again there is a really good episode but I think it needs to be let go, gently.
  • The Vampire Diaries (TVD) – Towards the end of the last season I was seriously lacking in love for this show. I mean I still liked it but there were way too many filler episodes and not enough action episodes. There were poignant episodes that worked with the overall arc, but it fell flat until that finale. I’ve seen the season four promo trailer and with Elena *SPOILER* now nearing the undead kind of life there is hope yet! Will she or won’t she? Of course she will! Drink the blood Elena, drink it!

 

  • Dexter – I gave up on this show not so long ago, got back into it and the season six finale had my jaw firmly on the floor. Going into season seven Dexter’s dark passenger is possibly in danger of been uncovered by his sister. What will he do?
  • New Girl – I love this show, it’s so laugh out loud funny that I can’t get enough. I don’t watch many comedy/sitcom shows so this more than fills my quota. I love Zooey Deschanel. Jess and Nick need to be together.
  • Homeland – Woah. Double woah. Argh *hair pulling*. I’m looking forward to seeing how this show moves forward as the end of the first season saw Carrie possibly losing a vital piece of information.
  • Once Upon a Time – This show is a way of escape, and with a little wish that the fairy tale world really does exist. The introduction of Hook, Mulan, Sleeping Beauty, Jack (of Beanstalk) and a possible new prince in the form of  Julian Morris hopping over from PLL has me yearning for its return.
  • The Newsroom – I’ll add this onto my list even though it’s on hiatus now until next summer. It took me until episode four to like this, the first few episodes were horribly shouty and a bit jumbled. The turning point was that episode and it defined what the show was about and how each episode was going to work, episode five was brilliant and gave our very own Brit actor Dev Patel the chance to shine because lets face it I DO NOT LIKE MAC. Emily Mortimer’s charcter is annoying to say the least, and don’t even get me started on Maggie (shouty, SHOUTY, and weak). The love quadrangle between Maggie/Don/Jim/Sloane is irritating and sometimes distracts from the news element that is at the forefront of the show and it wasn’t until the season finale that I even noticed Sloane liked Don(!) she doesn’t need a man she is too smart. Aaron Sorkin deserved GQ’s Writer of the Year!

Olivia Munn was on hand to award Aaron Sorkin with GQ Writer of the Year.

Returning shows:

  • Hart of Dixie – I have to admit I’m a huge OC fan and so watch this for Rachel Bilson, oh and Wilson Bethel’s abs.
  • Apartment 23 – Another comedy, with the best hook of them all James van der Beek plays an over the top version of himself. The. Best. Character. Ever. And also the possibility of a Dawson’s Creek reunion… well Busy Philips at least.
  • Glee – I don’t like Glee. I don’t like the singing, and I am really not a fan of the character Rachel, and Finchel (hopefully that will be ending in the new season). I do however love Santana and Brittany S. Pearce because they are funny. I still watch it for some reason.
  • Nikita – This show feels hit and miss sometimes, like it’s really good but then it’s just not. I’m not sure if it will get past season three, we’ll see as it managed to nab a renewal.
  • Gossip Girl – Thank god this is the final season. If I had written this three years ago I would have this show on the ‘Wouldn’t miss if my life depended on it’ list, now it sits down in the shows I will watch just to see what happens. The last season was such a ridiculous let down that I’m hoping the 10-episode final season will go out with a big bang.
  • 90210 – I’m not sure why I watch this because looking at AnnaLynne McCord’s body every episode makes me stupid jealous.
  • Surburgatory – This show is another funny one, and I loved the Clueless reunion with Alicia Silverstone and Jeremy Sisto in the first season. I like it actually but it’s got a way to go before it gets bumped up a list.

Wilson Bethel as Wade in Hart of Dixie

 

New picks:

  • 666 Park Avenue – I’m going to give this a couple of episodes, but by the sound of it the plot doesn’t sound strong enough. This could ‘fall at the first hurdle’.
  • Cult – I like the meta feature of this show, and I like Alaric Matt Davis. The idea is that journalist Jeff (Davis) is on the hunt for his missing brother who just before his disappearance became obsessed with a CW show called Cult. There’s lots of mystery around the show as it is believed it sends out subliminal messages and has a huge fanbase related to this, but as it has been pointed out, the show has apparently only aired a few episodes and in this day and age television shows don’t get a massive fanbase that quickly. I can put the errors aside if the show is good though.
  • The Carrie Diaries – This was going to happen in some form or another, the CW have placed an unknown fresh face as the centre of the show and are hoping for the best. AnnaSophia Robb plays a young Carrie in 1984, who when offered a internship at a law firm in New York snaps up the chance to get away from her Conneticut home life. She meets (Brit actress Freema Agyeman, Doctor Who) Larissa Loughton style editor at Interview Magazine and can’t get enough of her life and the life Carrie could have. There are plenty of issues that this show could throw up, especially the 80s dress code, and surprisingly Freema is probably one of the few mixed race actresses in a lead/supporting role on the CW…
  • Beauty and the Beast (2012) – Lending my support to a Smallville alumni, Kristin Kreuk stars as the beauty in this CW show, what I’m more interested in is how ugly an gruesome they will make the beast? Of course it’s the CW so probably not so much if the promo poster is anything to go by… (See below)
  • Arrow – Another CW show, and if you were a Smallville fan you’ll recognise the back story to the character of Oliver McQueen the billionaire playboy former orphan who goes missing presumed dead after a shipwreck and returns as some kind of vigilante. Green Arrow worked in Smallville as a support/sidekick/Justice Leage team member, but I do not feel ‘Arrow’ can carry a whole show by himself. Plus it’s not even the real Green Arrow, Justin Hartley has been replaced by a younger pretty brunette Stephen Amell.
  • Partners – Sophia Bush (of One Tree Hill fame) returns to television in what sounds like a fun show, don’t know if I’ll stick with it though.
  • The Following -Kevin Bacon on the small screen as a retired FBI profiler, tracking down a serial killer who has created his own cult of murderers. The premise sounds interesting, but some reviews of the Comic-Con screeners say there are major holes in the dialogue and that it’s basically “a Xerox of a copy of every serial killer movie, TV show, or novel of the last 20 years“.

Beauty and the Beast promo shot… I can just see a scar.

Cancelled:

  • Ringer – Poor SMG, she may be preggo with another baby but her show got cancelled. I admit I stopped watching it after about 9 episodes so it’s no loss, I just hope she finds something else to keep her on the tv!
  • The Secret Circle – Naaaawww I really liked this show and I really really really like Price Peterson’s recaps, as hilarious as the Teen Wolf ones. I was surprised it got cancelled, but it just didn’t get the ratings it needed to get renewed. Sad because the background story was intriguing, as well as the idea of killing off nearly all the adult characters.
  • Terra Nova – This was just so bad. I feel sorry for Steven Speilberg as a producer of the show, because it was his name attached to it that made me watch it in the first place. I had this idea that it would basically be a television series of Jurassic Park because it was set 85million years in the past. Obviously not.
  • Alcatraz – Gutted this got cancelled, I think the history of the show was so interesting even if the rest of the show was slightly predictable.
  • Pan Am – Think I watched two episodes before I got bored, I don’t think I’m suited to period television. Hence the reason I do not watch Downton Abbey.
  • Awake – I was going to give this a chance but then just forgot to watch it. I like Jason Isaacs and I would have liked to have found out which of his two worlds was the real one.
  • Charlie’s Angels – Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. WWTT?!Gl

Maybe…

It’s September already?

Those are the words falling miserably out of mouths up and down the country, and really we shouldn’t be surprised. It happens nearly every year, we sit on the edges of our seats waiting for that moment when the sun will burst through the seemingly never ending run of clouds so we can spend more than a mere minute outside with our loving friend vitamin D.

It never happens and September rolls around with us feeling even more glum than the beginning of the year when we promised we’d give up that thing we LOVE to make us lose weight or to pretend we feel better about ourselves (just remember that time is coming again soon, 17 weeks, don’t hate on me for pointing this out I loathe that time of the year).

BUT, what comes with September, is the start of the television season. You may think I’m crazy but autumn (or fall) is when the country is supposed to retire in front of the box snuggled up on the couch with no sun to distract them, no more balmy evenings but cold and rain to keep them inside to watch the latest offerings on the tele.

And as I’ve mentioned countless times before US television is what matters, although as the cold months draw in UK television is good, one show I’m looking forward to is the Body Farm a spinoff from the very greatly missed Waking the Dead. And all the other thriller, killer drama’s that appear lovingly on my screen.

Every year there are double the amount of programmes on US tv, brand new shows competing with veteran shows, those that win over audiences are the successors some with devoted fans prevail others never last beyond their second or third episode after when viewing figures fail to ignite.

I happen to have a tough schedule this year, with 30* shows currently on my timetable I don’t know how I’m going to manage. My fellow US tv lover has 40, and has just discovered the wonders of a livestreaming channel, and the joy of no sleep whilst watching The Lying Game at 2am in the morning (I do not have the fortune of being able to stay awake until 2am I have to rise at 7am to get ready for work, he currently works from home on his own hours).

Here’s a run down of my list, what I will without a doubt not be missing, what I will be giving a try, and what I think will fall at the first hurdle even though it has made it to my list.

Wouldn’t miss if my life depended on it:

  • Fringe (Fox) – my love of Josh Jackson would never waver (I love you Pacey).
  • Supernatural (CW) – J-squared always have a place in my heart.
  • Vampire Diaries (CW) – Ian Somerhalder, those eyes, that body (Sorry you always play a dead guy).

Must-watch:

  • Gossip Girl (CW)
  • Nikita (CW)
  • Family Guy
  • Dexter (Showtime)
  • America’s Next Top Model (CW)
  • Glee (Fox)
  • Game of Thrones (HBO)
  • Desperate Housewives (ABC) – this is the final series (thank god).
  • One Tree Hill (CW) – just getting back into this show after ditching it when Lucas and Peyton did…

New picks:

  • Apartment 23 (Fox) – it has James van der Beek in it, as himself. Nuff said.
  • Hart of Dixie (CW) – Summer is back, sorry Rachel Bilson.
  • New Girl (Fox) – I love Zooey Deschanel.
  • Ringer (CW)- Sarah Michelle Gellar on my screen again, and with a really great show.
  • The Secret Circle (CW) – From the same author of Vampire Diaries LJ Smith, and the man behind both tv shows Kevin Williamson (Dawson’s Creek, Scream)
  • *Terra Nova (Fox) – Forgot that this finally had an air date after being pushed back a few times, big CGI production, dinasours and produced by The Speilberg, I have to give it a try at least. (Sounds a little Primeval)
  • *2 Broke Girls (CBS) – I missed this when making the list, noticed it had Kat Dennings starring who I LOVED in Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist.
  • *Pan Am – I don’t know why I forgot to put this show on the list, an original series following the Mad Men lead it’s set in the “Jet Age”. My only worry is I’ve never watched Mad Men because it didn’t appeal to me so I may lose interest…
  • Revenge (ABC) – the lead returns to the town she grew up in but noone recognises her… no big names. (REALLY GOOD)

    The Ringer

Could fall at the first hurdle:

  • Alcatraz (Fox) – only thing attracting me to this show its from the creators of Lost and has Hurley in it.
  • Charlie’s Angels 2011 (ABC) – I loved the originals, the movies were ho-hum, I’m not sure the gloss and glamour will work in the noughties without making it tacky but I am prepared to be swayed. AWFUL
  • Grimm (NBC) – great idea but is it strong enough to hold up for more than one season when there’s already a show like Supernatural that covers the ‘grimm’ aspects. A possible replacement if SN finishes after season 7?
  • Once Upon a Time (ABC) – same idea using fairytales, but the look of the show could be a let down.
  • Revenge (ABC) – the lead returns to the town she grew up in but noone recognises her… no big names.
  • The Finder (Fox) – this is a latecomer to my list so I’ll be applying last to join first to go if it fails to impress me.
  • Awake (NBC) – another one that I could let go, I just like the premise of living a life while you dream.

On hiatus:

  • Falling Skies (TNT)
  • Pretty Little Liars (ABC Family)
  • Teen Wolf (MTV)
  • True Blood (HBO)

If there are any other shows that you will be watching that I haven’t listed and think it would fit into my schedule then let me know. I like having US tv buddies, discussing the ins and outs of the shows are much fun and can make you go crazy (PLL ha).

*Most recent additions

Green Lantern Review

I liked Green Lantern, I’m not entirely familiar with the lore of the comic book history so I couldn’t tell you what was right and what was entirely wrong. I’ll tell you what was right Ryan Reynolds, his star has been on the rise for so long always loitering in the background with B-movie comedies and heart-lighted romances now he’s hit the lead actor role and he did well as Hal Jordan.

His comedic style of acting is very similar in a lot of his movies, but it worked in Green Lantern, there were some moments where you had to laugh out loud it’s all about perfect delivery.

What I would say about the movie as a whole is that the beginning was slow, but slow in the fact it was trying to fill you in in the background of the story that an audience may not necessarily be familiar with so it was needed. But then the action seemed to jump quickly into him being the superhero and saving people and then boom the big-baddie Parallax invaded earth after being set free from it’s prison and then Hal Jordan saved the day.

It was almost too easy to guess what was going to happen, but then I suppose you get what you see on the package a classic superhero adventure movie not trying to disguise its purpose, to entertain and see a character come to life on the big screen.

I’ll move onto the other main reason I wanted to see this movie, Blake Lively. Another rising star, from her turn as Serena Van Der Woodsen on CW’s Gossip Girl, to her minor role in Ben Affleck’s fucking awesome movie The Town she is trying to come on leaps and bounds (and by dating an A-list Hollywood movie star ahem). The problem I have as much as I love her, her style, her hair, her legs, I couldn’t help but watch the Green Lantern and her playing test pilot Carol Ferris and seeing Serena Van Der Woodsen with dark hair and a nicer personality. There was no depth to her character she seemed to be an easy on the eye addition, someone to bring Hal Jordan back down to earth (literally) and to play the purpose of someone he loves and cares for so a villain can kidnap and hold ransom. Standard story line.

The villain who I mentioned earlier is Parallax, a former Guardian of the Green Lantern Corps who feeds on people’s fear. Hmm this sounds familiar… J K Rowling are you are fan of comic books? The weird creature that Parallax became was a floaty head cloaked in the skeletons of the people he consumed fear from, a big fat dementor in comic book form (those of you that haven’t read/seen Harry Potter, sod off somewhere else because you won’t know what I’m talking about). To me the villain seemed pretty unbeatable, like impossibly unbeatable, yet somehow the newest recruit of Green Lantern Corps defeated him using the sun and some energy formed into two aircrafts. What? Too easy. Ah well.

I’m not going to say this is the best movie ever, it doesn’t come to par with X-Men: First Class because it’s different and it’s DC not Marvel. I am looking forward to seeing where they go with this because it’s easily a 3-movie franchise. Definitely worth a sequel at least, especially after the genius turn from Mark Strong (one of the most underrated actors there is and he’s British) in the secret scene after the credits. We all knew he wanted the ring the Guardians made to try and defeat Parallax, a ring of pure fear but Sinastro didn’t get to wear it well until he slipped it on and turned his suit yellow… Ooo shocker! Oh and I forgot to mention Peter Sarsgaard, he was good, weird but good.

Gossip Girl Poll

For those of you that are watcing the new season of Gossip Girl I have created a little poll that I would like you to partake in.

A little recap – The first few episodes were centred around the wonderful Paris, where Blair and Serena had spent their summer chasing after boys and clothes. Unbeknownst to them Chuck had been shot and was being nursed to health by French beauty Clemence Poesy (for all intents and purpose Eva), she was from a poor background and did not know who Chuck really was, ahhh love. I thought her character was fantastic, and it enabled Chuck to be nice for once whilst lavishing her with gifts (after he revealed who he really was thanks to Blair). She stood up to Blair, nothing could bring Eva and Chuck down, well until a strategically placed passport tut tut Blair. Now she has gone, aww sad face.

Ed Westwick and Clemence Poesy (wearing Fendi Spring 2010) on set

And then we come to Juliet played by Katie Cassidy, I don’t like her character one bit. Devious, mean, and crap at playing the Blair and Serena game. She isn’t who she appears to be, which obviously makes for a good storyline but I don’t think Katie Cassidy brings as much glamour as Clemence does, she’s slightly cheesy. Her character is playing love interest to Nate, and he’s already suspicious but not suspicious enough which is stupid. Durrr Nate open your eyes she wants to take down Serena!

Katie Cassidy with Chace Crawford

Now who is the better character or actress, would you like Eva to come back pregnant or Juliet to be Serena’s long lost sister. You decide. Well you don’t really decide that’s upto the writers, but you catch my drift.

BFFs

Oh look Anna Wintour and Blake Lively carry on being BFF’s as they sat next to each other front row at Fashion’s Night Out: The Show. Blake wore a yellow tribal patterned Marchesa dress with Christian Louboutin heels, Anna wore her standard outfit of a patterened mid-length dress, shades and her infamous bob.

Gorgeous as ever

BFF's

Blake’s boob fetish

I think Blake Lively has a fetish with her own boobs. I’m not saying she shouldn’t they are a good pair, but she always has them out, I refer to Comic-Con in her square slash Preen outfit and now on set on Gossip Girl. She was spotted alongside new cast member Sam Page (those Desperate Housewives fans will recognise him as Bree’s weird stepson) who I hope fits in as well as Aaran Tveit did.

Sam Page and Blake Lively on set