Eclectic Pop

where "pop" culture gets "eclectic"

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Retro Movie Review: 'Notes on a Scandal' (2006)

Seldom does a film read like a novel ("Notes on a Scandal" is based off one). As the intensely cerebral work of reading can often be too personal to convey on camera. Getting inside a character’s mind depends on many variables and while films have successfully been adapting fiction's protagonist with success for a long time, it has not been executed quite at the personal level this film achieves.

10 Classic Films Worth Being Thankful For

#10: Dark Victory (1939)

Bette Davis' Oscar winning performance, anchors one of the sudsiest, black and white movies ever. Davis plays the free-spirited and indulgent, Judith, whose carefree life comes to a halt when she is diagnosed with a brain tumor.

After falling in love with her doctor (George Brent), she discovers that he and her sister have engaged in subterfuge over her condition. This is an enthralling drama that keeps you guessing. Despite being an old-timey weeper, the subject matter focuses more on living than dying, which is a pleasant detour for these types of films.

Movie Review: 'Deadfall' (2012)

When a brother (Eric Bana) and sister (Olivia Wilde) who are on the run, part ways to avoid being caught, they head on a collision course towards a fateful Thanksgiving. One sibling finds a further fall down the rabbit hole and the other, a possible shot at redemption. 2012's “Deadfall” depicts characters that are on the outskirts of the mainstream.

Movie Review: 'Chasing Mavericks' (2012)

Surf, sand and the beautiful beaches of California work in unison to produce a sports drama that is charmingly adept at creating heartfelt moments and truly touching sentiments about life. “Chasing Mavericks” is based on the true story of Jay Moriarty (Jonny Weston), who implored his gruff neighbor and surfing guru, Frosty (Gerard Butler) to help train him to surf the world’s biggest waves, the mavericks.

Spotlight Artist | The Sweet Remains

The Sweet Remains are, as the name of the band suggests, sweet. The trio’s gentle harmonies envelop listeners into the warm ambiance of love, in its purest form. While, quality love songs are hard to come by, The Sweet Remains have made more than their share of original and poignant contributions to the cause.

Their debut record ‘Laurel & Sunset’ from 2009 is a dreamy escape to tender romance through soliloquy filled lyricism. Enhancing the ability of the poignant lyrics to be heard is the trio’s crystallized vocal performances.

Retro Movie Review: 'A Simple Plan' (1998)

1998’s “A Simple Plan” features a simple premise that asks a simple question: what would you do? With that daring quandary it provokes its audience to slowly lose their innocence as they are faced with the prospective consequences of their answer.

As is so common in real life, trouble makes its presence known with a gentle nudge and this is the greatest deceit of all because the nature of such trouble exposes itself as not being all that dangerous to begin with. It's just a little bit of a bad thing, right? How the single speck of a bad, or grey deed can devolve into one more bad deed to cover the first is a gradual slide this film explores with intense study.

See It or Free It: 'Witches of East End'

Following in the footsteps of “Charmed”, “Practical Magic” and “Witches of Eastwick” (the TV show and movie); “Witches of East End” finds supernaturally empowered women, fending off the surrounding threats to their existence.

Julia Ormond plays Joanna, a mother who has protected her grown daughters, Ingrid (Rachel Boston) and Freya (Jenna Dewan-Tatum) from learning they are witches. As one might expect events force her to show her hand and with the help of her flighty sister, Wendy (Madchen Amick), both attempt to guide the girls through their newfound powers.

Delta Rae: Chasing Twisters (EP Review)

Delta Rae returns with their new EP 'Chasing Twisters', a magnificent addition to their music catalog that picks up, right where they left off. After blazing onto the music scene with their debut album ‘Carry the Fire’, they show no signs of slowing down with their latest, exhilaratingly frenzied offer.

Delta Rae demonstrate the exceptional talent of music veterans that know the sound they want to create and create it they do, with reckless abandon and fevered passion. A seamless blend of folk, country, blues, current and 70’s era rock with a tinge of pop appeal, thrown in for good measure. They are a powder-keg of talent, bound to explode into the stratosphere.

Movie Review: 'Last Vegas' (2013)

Branded by some as a senior citizen version of “The Hangover”, it’s easy to draw surface-level comparisons between the two films. Both share the plot similarity of a group of male friends going to Vegas for a friend’s bachelor party. That is where the similarities end though.

There are no drunken …

Song of the Week: 'You Fill My Heart' by Jason Walker

Ever since stumbling onto this song on YouTube, it has dominated my playlist. Jason Walker gives listeners a wondrous 3 minutes 40 seconds that spares no instrumental expense with its grand piano melody working as its centerpiece, which effectively packs the sentimental punch at the heart of this soul stirring ballad.

Retro Movie Review: 'Hannah and Her Sisters' (1986)

After hearing this touted as the greatest film in Woody Allen’s repertoire, there were obviously high expectations going in. Judged against the backdrop of Allen’s cornucopia of other films, it is strangely endearing. The answer to whether it is his best film; is up to personal interpretation.

Personally, the answer is that it is not. Analyzing the film based on its own merit, it is still an entertaining and thought provoking work that investigates all of the core questions that are at the heart of most of Allen’s theatrical explorations.

Retro Movie Review: 'French Kiss' (1995)

French Kiss Movie Poster Meg Ryan Kevin Kline
Where has all of the romance gone? For the past ten years, quality romantic comedies have been hard, if not impossible, to come by. “French Kiss” serves as a time capsule to a better era. The year was 1995, and America’s sweetheart was Meg Ryan, the reigning queen of the rom-com genre.

Let's Discuss: Movie Endings, Specifically 'Martha Marcy May Marlene' And 'Warrior'

Warning: The following article contains spoilers regarding the ending of the movies, “Martha Marcy May Marlene” and “Warrior”.

You’ve watched a movie that is so marvelous, you can barely think of what is coming around the bend because you are so absorbed in all of the events that are being portrayed. The movie has you enraptured, deeply within its grasp and then…it ends.

Not just any ending though, a completely ‘Where the heck did that come from?’ ending. Sometimes the movie does not even give you that, it just ends abruptly with the screenwriter expecting you to finish where they left off and make up your own ending.

This can culminate in hours of frustration and obsessive bristling whenever the film is brought up or mentioned, in the future. At first, you remember it fondly until, your mind warps back to remind you of the hauntingly unfinished ending that permeated the rest of the film.

Must-See Movie Review: 'Far and Away' (1992)

Far and Away Tom Cruise Joseph Donnelly Nicole Kidman Shannon Christie Universal Pictures
There are love stories, and then there are love stories. What makes a good love story is subjective, and most times, it has a very strict formula. Boy meets girl, the girl is with another guy, the girl is too gutless to say what she wants, as a triangle usually follows.

See It or Free It: 'Dracula'

NBC’s daring re-telling of pop culture’s most enduring vampire legend, Bram Stoker's Dracula, is a huge gamble. The show takes place in historical England and tackling period pieces can be tricky, especially when done on network TV. As the CW has learned with “Reign”, the cable success of “The Tudors” and “Game of Thrones” cannot be duplicated by simply having actors don period clothing and masquerading around in grand sets.

There have to be characters that can transport the audience through time and “Dracula” nails that crucial feat. The tweaks done to the narrative are well executed and the show presents itself with a lavish quality.

Song of the Week: 'Wild Child' by Brett Dennen

Refreshing is the first word that comes to mind when the folksy single “Wild Child” begins. Culling from a luxurious guitar rhythm, the song’s catchy hook is what pushes it over the edge and into enduring appeal. It’s infectiously invigorating, energetic and filled with an earthy frenzy.

As a result, the repeat factor of the song is off the charts. As one could easily identify, the lyrics capture the enigmatic journey of a soul desiring freedom, as Dennen gleefully proclaims “I am a wild child mama”.

Interview with Nina Yasmineh

Nina Yasmineh is the talented musician behind the intrinsic pathos that compose the EP ‘Seven  Years’. In this interview; she offers some insight into the meaning behind her music, her sound and her musical journey as an artist.

Movie Review: 'Seduced and Abandoned' (2013)

“Seduced and Abandoned” follows actor Alec Baldwin and director James Toback (“Harvard Man”) as they attend the world renowned, Cannes Film Festival, to obtain funding for a movie they bill as an homage to “Last Tango in Paris”. In their film, Baldwin would star opposite Neve Campbell (“Scream”) in a lust story, set amidst the backdrop of the War in Iraq.

Nina Yasmineh: Seven Years (EP Review)

Nina Yasmineh’s EP, ‘Seven Years’, is an ethereal journey into existential self-discovery. The 4 track EP emits a storm of emotion that is rich in artistry. Yasmineh displays a passionate verve with her vibrant lyricism and sentient vocals. The genesis of the EP is the titular “Seven Years”. A powerful piano centered melody, elementally anchors the song, setting off its intrinsic tone. It’s a personal anthem that proclaims acceptance of one’s inner self.

The Wild Young Hearts: Pretty Girls (EP Review)

The Wild Young Hearts bring their west coast swagger to an EP filled with the infectious warmth of the California sun. There is a rollicking and self-assured keenness that shines throughout the aptly titled, ‘Pretty Girls’ EP. ‘Pretty Girls’ is filled with a spunk and liveliness that courses throughout its entire duration.

Beginning with a dazzling piano melody in the strictly instrumental, “Interlude”, the EP kicks off with a steady musicality. “Caroline” is a punkish endeavor that’s cheeky lyrics emit a startling charm. It's reminiscent of the era of 60's surfer rock, with a modernized twist.

The Bedroom Hour: Themes (EP Review)

The Bedroom Hour comes on strong with their mesmeric EP, ‘Themes’. There is a quality of other-worldliness to their sound and an 80’s synth-like eminence to the EP. Opening with “Shadow Boxer” The Bedroom Hour pulls you into the luxurious instrumentation that luminously lights the rest of the album.

“Tyrannosaur” opens with a catchy rift that develops into a haunting melody. Accompanied by an ethereal vocal performance, this song captures a lot of emotional resonance. “Themes” follows and it is a brief and intensely poignant number with fervent melodious charm.

Let's Discuss: 'The Vampire Diaries'

When this season began it was with such sweet promise. What a difference 5 episodes can make. This has been the worst season of the series so far and with no end in sight, Eclectic Pop has narrowed down the top 5 worst things happening on the show thus far.

#5: Delena Who?

For fans of Damon (Ian Somerhalder) and Elena (Nina Dobrev), the much ballyhooed and off-screen “summer of love” that Elena has been whining about having, since Stefan (Paul Wesley) was in a trunk, was shown for .02 seconds before she was having visions of Stefan. What a pay-off for fans that have waited 5 seasons to see them together!

See It or Free It: 'Ravenswood'

The set-up is creaky and the execution is a massive fumble. Ravenswood is a spin-off of Pretty Little Liars and that is perhaps the greatest hurdle the show fails to make it over. The creative universes of each of the respective shows are irreconcilable, vastly varying in tone.

While Pretty Little Liars exists in a sunny, realistic yet creepy setting, Ravenswood is steeped in the supernatural, explaining nothing by way of plausible explanation and instead focusing on paranormal activity as the sole cause.