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<p>Emma Watson in &quot;The Perks of Being a Wallflower.&quot;</p>

Emma Watson in "The Perks of Being a Wallflower."

Credit: Summit Entertainment

'Argo' takes top honors from San Diego Film Critics, 'Perks' gets some love

Critics go their own way with awards for Michelle Williams and Emma Watson

Take that, Anne Thompson! (We kid because we love.) Many of you have noticed the growing presence of word-of-mouth favorite "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" on the precursor beat, and the tender teen drama scored a nifty coup from the San Diego Film Critics' Society today, taking Best Supporting Actress for Emma Watson, as well as the Best Ensemble award.

The "Perks" love is one of several ways in which the San Diego group, who announced their nominations yesterday, distinguished themselves from the herd. Their big winner, "Argo," took four awards including Best Picture and Director: you wouldn't have guessed it a few weeks ago when it was still the consensus Oscar frontrunner, but it's the film's first win in either category thus far.

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<p>Martin Freeman's busier than he's ever been these days and the audience is richer for it.</p>

Martin Freeman's busier than he's ever been these days and the audience is richer for it.

Credit: HitFix

Martin Freeman talks about how Andy Serkis set the tone for 'The Hobbit'

We discuss carrying the weight of the trilogy with the man who would be Bilbo

I guess it's just a matter of time until they announce John Krasinski as the lead in "Episode VII," right? 

I mean, seeing Jim from "The Office" wielding a lightsaber is just as unlikely as Martin Freeman being the lead in "The Hobbit."  And yet, here we are, and I did indeed sit down with Freeman to talk about stepping into the familiar feet of Bilbo Baggins for "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," the first in the three films that will tell the story of the dearly beloved book.

Freeman first came to popularity with his work as Tim in the original UK version of "The Office," and the same qualities that made him perfect for that role have served him well in other roles, like Arthur Dent in "The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy," John Watson on Stephen Moffat's outstanding "Sherlock," and of course, the completely out-of-water Mr. Baggins, far from his Shire, doing his best to survive an adventure.

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<p>Emayatzy Corinealdi and David Oyelowo scored nods for &quot;Middle of Nowhere,&quot; but where is the film in the Best Picture field?</p>

Emayatzy Corinealdi and David Oyelowo scored nods for "Middle of Nowhere," but where is the film in the Best Picture field?

Credit: AAFRM

'Beasts,' 'Flight,' 'Django' lead NAACP Image Award nominees, 'Middle of Nowhere' sidelined

The only ceremony where you'll see Tyler Perry competing with Suraj Sharma

I must confess I don't really get the NAACP Image Awards. On the one hand, the idea of an awards show dedicated specifically to honoring non-white achievements in popular culture seems uncomfortably self-marginalizing in this day and age. On the other, the unhappy truth is that non-white artists and stories are still marginalized in Hollywood, so there's something to be said for a ceremony that celebrates the finest talent the community has to offer.

Why, then, does the NAACP routinely do such a poor job of recognizing that very talent for themselves? This year's list of Image nominees is led by three crossover features with substantial African-American leads (all, incidentally, from white filmmakers): "Beasts of the Southern Wild," "Django Unchained" and "Flight" nabbed four nominations each. Where, however, is "Middle of Nowhere?"

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<p>Young actress Isabelle Allen received one of 12 nominations for "Les Mis&eacute;rables."

Young actress Isabelle Allen received one of 12 nominations for "Les Misérables."

Credit: Universal Pictures

'Les Misérables' leads Phoenix critics' nods

'The Avengers' manages a Best Picture nomination

Another hour, another list of critics' award nominations.The Phoenix Film Critics Society is the latest group to toss their picks into the hat, and they've largely favored the Oscar-season favorites -- "Les Misérables" comfortably leads the way with 12 nominations. The Phoenix folk vote in more categories than most such groups, which is all well and good, though I'm not sure how well-equipped most critics are to judge the year's best stunt work. Novelties in the list include a Best Picture nod for "The Avengers" and, in a less populist vein, a mention for Mary Elizabeth Winstead in a Best Actress category that, oddly, only finds room for four names. Check out the full list after the jump, and at The Circuit.   

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Terry McDermott of "The Voice".

Terry McDermott of "The Voice".

Credit: NBC

Recap: 'The Voice' Tuesday - Top 4 Results

Which three will still be standing for the Finals?

Reality shows should get more dramatic as they approach the finish, not less. And yet, here we are in the penultimate week of “The Voice”. I’m not sure this is entirely the show’s fault. I think we could look back and see certain decisions that ultimately affected the final month of this season. (I still miss De’Borah and think she might still be around were it not for Christina Aguilera’s crazy decision during the Live Playoffs to save Adriana Louise instead.) But given the Final Four as presently constituted, and given the song selections this week, and given the chart placements of those songs overnight, it’s almost unfathomable that Trevin Hunte will make it past tonight.

CeeLo Green called Trevin “that dude” during the Blind Auditions, identifying him as a possible contender to win the entire thing. And even though it looks like he’ll come up short, the future seems fairly bright for him. With the exception of one or two numbers (“Vision Of Love”, “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”), we never saw Hunte’s true potential realized, but rather blinding promise on display on a weekly basis. Part of that has to do with his age, part of it has to do with his experience, and part of that has to do with Green’s tutelage. But no matter. Even if Hunte has the strongest pure voice left in the competition, I’m not remotely convinced that will be enough tonight.
 
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<p>Richie Sambora</p>

Richie Sambora

Credit: Press Here

Exclusive: Bon Jovi's Richie Sambora on Wednesday's superstar Sandy benefit

Listen to his charity single for the Red Cross

Richie Sambora may be in one of the most successful rock and roll bands of all time, but the Bon Jovi guitarist says he’s just a geeky music fan like the rest of us, especially when it comes to being in the presence of some of his music heroes.

Such will be the case tomorrow night when Bon Jovi joins such acts as The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney and The Who for the 12-12-12 Concert to benefit Hurricane Sandy victims.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Skylar Grey in &quot;C'Mon Let Me Ride&quot;</p>

Skylar Grey in "C'Mon Let Me Ride"

Watch: Eminem co-stars in Skylar Grey's crazy 'C'Mon Let Me Ride' video

The songwriter takes a trip to the trailer park

Last we visited Skylar Grey's single "C'Mon Let Me Ride" featuring Eminem, a few things were established: the song is catchy, Slim Shady is a nerd, it's a satire on overtly sexualized pop music and Skylar Grey can play the part exceedingly well.

With the release of the music video to "C'Mon Let Me Ride," the songwriter takes the cynical message even further, with the pair dropping by a trailer park and wreaking hell on its inhabitants, women and men. Grey -- rocking cutoffs and a flannel so hard -- inexplicably pines away for a cowboy who can't be bothered to notice her as he's too busy ogling beauty pageant contestants in a magazine. Those airbrushed airheads come alive and Grey then takes them for a ride (get it?), luring them into clap-jawed evil tanning beds and giving them bunk plastic surgery. The fools are then further goggled by hillbillies from their lawn chairs.

That leaves Grey alone with her cowboy, and they seductively wash her bicycle like it's a car, water everywhere, hands gripping the stems. It's about this time that you notice, even more than before, the lyrics "I'm a sellout for you..."

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<p>Adele</p>

Adele

Credit: AP Photo/Jonathan Short

Adele's 'Skyfall,' Florence + the Machine's 'Breath of Life' among 75 original songs up for Oscar

And no 'Holy Motors' -- Booooo!

The Academy has announced that a whopping 75 tunes are in play for the Best Original Song Oscar this year, and among them were tracks by Adele, Florence + the Machine and The Arcade Fire. I imagine that makes the Oscarcast's producers very happy, that top ticket acts are in play, but they have to be nominated first, folks. So don't go carving out a spot in the show's rundown for these numbers just yet.

Also in play are other popular artists like Keith Urban, Karen O and Katy Perry. I'm personally hopeful that Ennio Morricone's beautiful track "Ancora Qui" gets into the category, and I have a hunch it might. But what a bummer that "Who We Were" from "Holy Motors" didn't make the cut. I have no idea why. Also, the Weinsteins' push for Willie Nelson's "Midnight Run" from "Lawless" bore no fruit, I see. Though The Bootleggers and Emmylou Harris's "Cosmonaut" did.

Check out the full list of qualifying contenders below. We'll have the Best Original Song Contenders page updated in due time. For now, what do you expect will be nominated from the category?

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<p>Donna Summer in 2009</p>

Donna Summer in 2009

Credit: AP Photo

Donna Summer, Rush, Public Enemy are in Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's Class of 2013

Who has to come back again next year?

Rush fans rejoice! The power trio is one of six acts who will be inducted into the  Rock & Roll Hall of Fame class of 2013.

The rockers, whose fans had rallied around their cause for years, will be joined by Heart, Randy Newman, Public Enemy and Donna Summer and Albert King, both of whom will be inducted posthumously.

Upon hearing of the honor, Rush’s Geddy Lee said the victory was really for the fans, who were second only to the KISS Army, in marshaling the troops to get their band inducted. “It was a cause they championed,” Lee told Rolling Stone. “I’m very relieved for them and we share this honor with them, for sure.” He also noted how happy his mom was about the news.

Newman, in his own inimitable way, expressed joy that he will be inducted, god willing, before he dies. “I’m really glad it happened when I was still around to see it.”

Heart’s Ann Wilson, who, along with Joan Jett, should have gotten in years ago,  commented to Rolling Stone, “Some people have an idea of what the shape of rock & roll is supposed to look like... We’re not really it.” My guess is that shape would be a penis.

Public Enemy becomes the fourth hip-hop act to join the hall, alongside Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Run-D.M.C. and the Beastie Boys.

Among the acts on the ballot this year who did not get elected are N.W.A., Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, Kraftwerk, Procol Harum, Chic, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, The Marvelettes, and the Meters.

Did the Hall get it right this year?  In my mind, that’s a resounding yes. Here’s my proof: I am notoriously horrible in making predictions, but I managed to get all five inductees correct this year in this piece earlier this year. The only one I missed was Albert King because I thought only five would go in. 

This year marked the first time the public could vote for the inductees, although their voice was small: the combined public vote counted for one of the 600 ballots.

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place at Los Angeles’ Nokia Theater on April 18 and will be broadcast on HBO on May. 18.

Whom do you feel should be on next year’s list?  Will Chic finally get in on its eighth nomination? Does Rush’s entry pave the way for the long list of prog rockers who are still not in? Hall & Oates? Todd Rungren? And, yes, KISS?

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<p>Anyone else get the feeling Johnny Depp and the horse are going to steal the show?</p>

Anyone else get the feeling Johnny Depp and the horse are going to steal the show?

Credit: Walt Disney Company

Gore Verbinski and Johnny Depp go big with a new 'Lone Ranger' trailer

Can they make lightning strike again with a new franchise?

One of the reasons I really like "Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest" is because the film's existence is such a cheerful, celebratory end zone dance by Gore Verbinski and Johnny Depp, two men who were in desperate need of at least a solid triple at the box-office.

It's hard to remember at this point a time in which Johnny Depp was thought to be box-office poison.  It's true, though.  He had a long and fascinating string of good choices that did nothing to help make him a movie star.  They made him a better actor, and I think his natural talent has mainly to do with the way he would approach his roles.  He made big decisions, risky decisions about voices and make-up and physical traits.  In "Cry-Baby," "Edward Scissorhands," "Benny and Joon," "Ed Wood," "Dead Man," "Fear And Loathing," and more, he did really good work.  The films just weren't hits, though, and it was starting to look like he'd used up his 23 chances.  Tim Burton seemed to be the one collaborator who he could turn to for even a glancing chance at commercial relevance.  I don't think that is the goal of someone's career, but it is a requirement if you're going to keep getting the opportunity to star in interesting and exciting films.

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<p>Andy Samberg is going to brave the always hard to win over crowd at the Independent Spirit Awards tent as this year's host.</p>

Andy Samberg is going to brave the always hard to win over crowd at the Independent Spirit Awards tent as this year's host.

Andy Samberg picks up the Independent Spirit Awards host baton

Another 'SNL' vet gets an emcee gig

Could 2013 provide the world with the best trio, er, quartet of awards show hosts ever?  "Family Guy" and "Ted" wunderkind Seth McFarlane is on board for the grand daddy, the Oscars; "SNL" vets and BFF's Amy Poehler and Tina Fey are making NBC and the Golden Globes must see TV again; and now Film Independent has announced that the usually funny and creative Andy Samberg will top line the 2013 Independent Spirit Awards.  It's signalling a new generation of emcees (for the moment) and at worst should pique casual award show viewers interest.  Granted, the Spirits are broadcast at 10 PM on a Saturday night on low rated IFC, but for those of us in the audience it should be fun.

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<p>Green Day's &quot;&iexcl;Tre!&quot;</p>

Green Day's "¡Tre!"

Album Review: Green Day's 'Tre!' ends the party on a solid note

Last in trilogy marches to a bittersweet conclusion

After releasing two albums of raw and ready rock since September, the party’s over, or at least on its last legs, on “Tre!,” the third in Green Day’s trilogy, out today.

The exhilaration on “Uno!,” released in September, and “Dos!,” out last month,  has been replaced with a certain weariness, but the dozen tunes here still have plenty of bite. Performed at a much slower, less hyper speed than the songs on the first two sets, “Tre!” provides some food for thought for those who have stayed too long too often, while also serving an an excellent showcase for Billie Joe Armstrong’s often plaintive vocals.

Opening with country-tinged waltz “Brutal Love,” most of the songs on “Tre!” come with a tinge of regret whether it’s over a lost love on the horn-laced “Missing You” or a lost childhood (at any age) on the pulsing “X-Kid.”

The band’s familiar quick-tempo-ed bounce returns on the power poppy “Sex, Drugs and Violence,” which is doubly likable for the line:  “Well, I don’t want to be an imbecile, but Jesus made me that way.”

The most interesting cut is the six-minute “Dirty Rotten Bastards,” which is about four songs in one. The tune, which would have sounded right at home on “21st Century Breakdown,” opens with a sing-songy militant bounce before progressing to some serious guitar shredding bolstered by Tre Cool’s relentless drumming,  then shifting into a melodic mid-tempo lament to “all God’s losers,” before majestically bending into a slower section.

The album closes with a piano ballad, “The Forgotten,” which sounds like Green Day crossed with Oasis, and will be familiar with "Twight" fans for its inclusion on the soundtrack for "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2."  Green Day doesn't do happy particularly well, but they've got pissed off, bittersweet, and disenchanted down.

The three albums work as a piece, but also stand confidently on their own individually. Of the three, “Tre” will appeal to Green Day fans who like their music a little more contemplative than mindless.

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