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<p>Jack Pierce's make-up may not have scared my kids, but they both seemed riveted by 'Bride Of Frankenstein'</p>

Jack Pierce's make-up may not have scared my kids, but they both seemed riveted by 'Bride Of Frankenstein'

Credit: Universal Home Video

Film Nerd 2.0 Film Fest kicks off with an unplanned viewing of 'Bride Of Frankenstein'

An accident may have set the stage perfectly for Saturday

The Universal Monsters have loomed large in the imaginations of my kids even before they saw a single film about them. There are Frankenstein and Dracula and Creature From The Black Lagoon toys in the house, and there was a series of monster books that were given to Toshi by his godfather when he was born that were some of his earliest bedtime fascinations.

It's been a slow process of actually introducing the films to them, though, and one of the ones that I've been holding off on was "The Invisible Man." Then one recent afternoon, we were looking at Reelizer, an amazing website featuring alternative poster art, and they saw a killer "Invisible Man" piece of art, and that's all she wrote. They both became determined to see the movie as soon as possible.

Once I decided to do this festival, I started figuring out when I could show them things, and I didn't take into account the baseball practice and the two games that are also happening on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. So the only way it makes sense for them to be able to see everything and still go to bed by 8:00 on Sunday night so they're ready for school the next morning is if we cheat and show the first movie on Thursday.

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<p>Rosario Dawson does some of her strongest work ever in a key role in Danny Boyle's new thriller 'Trance'</p>

Rosario Dawson does some of her strongest work ever in a key role in Danny Boyle's new thriller 'Trance'

Credit: Fox Searchlight

Danny Boyle's 'Trance' is a sly, stealthy thriller with memory on its mind

Rosario Dawson has never been better than she is here

I am wildly fond of Danny Boyle, but I am not always crazy about Danny Boyle's films.

I think ultimately, I like the energy and the wit with which he approaches the puzzle that is filmmaking. He understands that a film is, first and foremost, a theatrical experience. Watching "Trance," I felt the same cool sense of self-assured style that made "Trainspotting" such an electrifying experience the first time. There are points in "Trance" where the soundtrack and the visual palette are like an assault of sorts. It is a powerful visceral experience.

As a script? If you'd asked me 2/3 of the way through the film, I would have told you that I thought it was a stylish but slight riff on the heist thriller. Boyle and his screenwriters Joe Ahearne and John Hodge are ultimately up to something more than that, but it's stealthy and sly and very, very sneaky, and I like that. It helps that Boyle has been playing these kinds of games for 20 years now with audiences, and he's gotten extraordinarily good at the technical craft of what it is that he does. He knows that by the time you sit down in the theater, more likely than not you've seen a trailer that suggests this is going to be a weird mind trip of a movie, and so he lets you know right up front that this is going to be that, but he also drops just enough hints to let you know that he wants it to count.

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<p>&quot;Mad Men&quot; star Vincent Kartheiser</p>

"Mad Men" star Vincent Kartheiser

Credit: AMC

Interview: 'Mad Men' star Vincent Kartheiser discusses a maturing Pete Campbell

Or has Don Draper's former adversary matured at all?
By now, you've probably read Denise Martin's Vulture interview with a wonderfully animated Vincent Kartheiser, in which the "Mad Men" star shared his opinions on Twitter and bill-shredding, while also flicking paper footballs at his interrogator. 
 
I had a different kind of interview with Kartheiser. In our conversation, the "Angel" veteran talks about Pete Campbell's development from Don Draper's dangerous wunderkind adversary to his current incarnation, a differently discontented man with a receding hairline, a double-chin and a growing realization that he's no longer the youngest man in the room. 
 
Kartheiser talked about how his own maturation process hasn't always mirrored Pete's and he discussed a physical transformation that includes shaving back that hairline.
 
Throughout the interview, Kartheiser was tearing pieces of paper into one-inch-wide strips and the ripping sounds are frequently audible on my recording. It was only after hearing my colleague's story that I realized those strips were likely nascent paper footballs. 
 
No projectiles were aimed in my direction. But I think it's an interesting interview anyway...
 
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"Scandal"

 "Scandal"

Credit: ABC

'Scandal' recap: 'Molly, You in Danger, Girl' but she isn't the only one

Huck and Olivia should watch their backs, too

It's funny that, even in a fictional Washington D.C., we'd find so many characters tortured by the lies they've told. Everyone from the advisor's boyfriend to the President himself seems to lie awake at night, wondering about who they really are other than, of course, lying liars who lie. I guess we should all be happy that fake Washington D.C. has a big, judgmental conscience with which to flog themselves, as I'm pretty sure that's not the case in real life. 

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<p>Barbra Streisand</p>

Barbra Streisand

Credit: AP Photo

Barbra Streisand returns to the director's chair with Bourke-White/Caldwell love story

The film will be her first directorial effort in 17 years

After inking a deal with worldwide sales firm Aldamisa International in February to tackle her first directorial endeavor since 1996's "The Mirror Has Two Faces," Barbra Streisand has settled on a project: a love story based on the relationship between photographer Margaret Bourke-White and author Erskine Caldwell.

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<p>Mads Mikkelsen as &quot;Hannibal&quot;&nbsp;in the new NBC&nbsp;drama.</p>

Mads Mikkelsen as "Hannibal" in the new NBC drama.

Credit: NBC

Series premiere: 'Hannibal' - 'Aperitif'

What did everybody think of Bryan Fuller's take on Hannibal Lecter and friends?

I published my review of "Hannibal" yesterday. As you can see, I was a big fan. Despite Bryan Fuller's track record, I went in assuming I'd hate it, just based on serial killer drama burnout. Instead, Fuller, David Slade, Hugh Dancy and company really impressed me with a show that's both fairly faithful to the Thomas Harris books (the killer from this episode is taken straight from "Red Dragon") while feeling like its own thing.

My hope is to add this to the weekly review rotation, though given the sheer number of interesting shows airing this spring, I can't promise that I'll get to it every episode.

In the meantime, though, I'm curious what everybody else thought of this one. Did you enjoy Mads Mikkelsen's more understated Hannibal the Cannibal? How did you feel about the visual device for showing how Will Graham learns to think like the killers? Was it creepy, or cliched? Did anyone make the mistake of trying to eat while watching? And will you watch again?

Have at it.

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<p>Danny Boyle, James McAvoy and Vincent Cassel on the set of &quot;Trance.&quot;</p>

Danny Boyle, James McAvoy and Vincent Cassel on the set of "Trance."

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures

With 'Trance' on the way, ranking Danny Boyle's 10 feature films to date

Counting down the Oscar-winning director's filmography, from worst to best

It's been interesting watching British critics dance around Danny Boyle's "Trance" (which opened in the UK last week, and hits US screens tomorrow), squaring the film's superficial genre pleasures with the director's unlikely new status as a national treasure. Boyle has, of course, been regarded with affection for some time now, both at home and abroad, but in the last five years, his career has taken a turn for the prestigious that wasn't easily seen coming.

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<p>On &quot;New Girl,&quot;&nbsp;Jess (Zooey Deschanel)&nbsp;and Nick (Jake Johnson)&nbsp;ran into Russell (Dermot Mulroney).</p>

On "New Girl," Jess (Zooey Deschanel) and Nick (Jake Johnson) ran into Russell (Dermot Mulroney).

Credit: FOX

Review: 'New Girl' - 'First Date'

Nick asks Jess out, but Russell's presence complicates things

A review of tonight's "New Girl" coming up just as soon as I shoot up a bear with Hep C...

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<p>Gillian Jacobs as Britta in &quot;Community.&quot;</p>

Gillian Jacobs as Britta in "Community."

Credit: NBC

Review: 'Community' - 'Herstory of Dance'

Britta tries to cover up a mistake, and Abed tries to date two women at once

A quick review of tonight's "Community" coming up just as soon as I'm in an all-girl kazoo band...

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<p>On &quot;Parks and Recreation,&quot;&nbsp;Ben (Adam Scott)&nbsp;revisits his hometown.</p>

On "Parks and Recreation," Ben (Adam Scott) revisits his hometown.

Credit: NBC

Review: 'Parks and Recreation' - 'Partridge'

Ben returns to his hometown, Jamm sues Ron, and Ann and Chris struggle with compatibility

A review of tonight's "Parks and Recreation" coming up just as soon as I know how many pounds of money I have...

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<p>Last night's &quot;The Americans&quot;&nbsp;is available online for those who missed the final scene due to a DVR&nbsp;mix-up.</p>

Last night's "The Americans" is available online for those who missed the final scene due to a DVR mix-up.

Credit: FX

FX apologizes for 'The Americans' DVR snafu

FX publicity department takes the blame for listings error

Last night, I published my review of another terrific episode of "The Americans" that had a particularly memorable final shot (no spoilers). Then the commenters began expressing their confusion — and anger — because their DVR recordings had cut off at an earlier, more mild moment in the final scene.

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<p>Yeah, that's pretty much exactly how I&nbsp;remember my prom, too.</p>

Yeah, that's pretty much exactly how I remember my prom, too.

Credit: MGM/UA

Chloe Grace Moretz gets in touch with her powers in the new 'Carrie' trailer

How has Kimberly Pierce made this new version feel contemporary?

When I first heard about the casting for Kimberly Pierce's "Carrie," I thought she was making a mistake.

Don't get me wrong. I think Chloe Grace Moretz is very talented. The problem seemed to me to be that Moretz is someone who projects a self-confidence and a natural strength that makes her a tough fit for Carrie White, who is so insecure she's practically transparent. In the movie "Let Me In," it is young Kodi Smit-McPhee who plays the weak one, and Moretz is the stronger friend who teaches him how to take some control over his life. As Hit Girl, Moretz is a deadly little whirling dervish, afraid of nothing.

When I was on the set of "Kick-Ass 2" in November of last year, Moretz had just come off of this experience, and she was still mulling over the experience. She is almost always accompanied by her brother Trevor, her acting coach, and her mother, and the two of them talked candidly with me about how hard a project "Carrie" turned out to be and what an emotional experience it was. They seemed to feel that it was a very difficult thing to get right, and that Kimberly Pierce had, at the very least, a clear idea of why she wanted to tell the story again and how that story might be relevant to kids dealing with a modern type of bullying.

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