TV Reviews? You Got It.

Like Jonas on "Dark," take a deep dive into Eclectic Pop's past with an assortment of TV reviews. Click on the pic to travel through the wormhole!

@EclecticPop

TV Rundown: Aug. 24 - 29 | The 'PLL' Shocker & more!

Tyrant | A shocking close to the first season, the finale was a game changer that left viewers on the precipice of a grim outcome. Ashraf Barhom’s sensational performance as the despotic Jamal was sensational as was Morian Atias’ turn as Leila, her closing monologue providing a chilling allocation of revenge. As the hour transpired with riveting repercussions, it made a phenomenal case for a second chapter. “Tyrant” has been a must-see, one of the year’s best new dramas and a stunning accomplishment for FX. 

Entertainment Playlist: Labor Day Weekend Editon

Wondering what to watch this weekend? Eclectic Pop has a playlist of television series, mini-series and movies that are worth watching.

Marathon-able Mini-Series

The captivating mini “The White Queen” follows three relentless women’s zealous battle for power as they do whatever it takes to gain the throne in this stunning period drama starring "Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation" breakout Rebecca Ferguson.

Best-Selling author Ken Follett’s “World Without End” receives the adaptation treatment in an enthralling sequel to “Pillars of the Earth” and it’s not imperative that you watch the original to follow its stand alone sequel.

Best New Movie Bets: Aug. 28 | 'November Man' & more!

Best New Movie Bet: “The November Man” Pierce Brosnan stars as a former CIA operative who must face off against his former protégé (Luke Bracey) during a mission. Seeing Brosnan back in a high octane action thriller should be fun though he’s worth watching in any genre capacity. The studio has alr…

The 66th Emmy Awards | 8 Takeaways from the Evening

The Emmys aired on Monday to their biggest audience in 8 years. Below Eclectic Pop makes 8 observations about the night's festivities.

Few Surprises | “Breaking Bad” dominated yet again and the only good news is that this will be the last Emmy’s they will qualify for. For the past 5 years, ther…

Let's Discuss: The 'True Blood' Series Finale

Saying goodbye was sadder than expected. Known for its bawdy camp, out of this world storytelling and vulgar abandon, “True Blood” signed off in a manner that felt appropriate despite being an about face from the overall tone of the series. All the while possessing the qualities most finales should strive for: closure, a glimpse into the future and a sense that a long crazy ride had been worth hanging on for.

TV Rundown: Aug. 17 - 22 | 'Dallas', 'Tyrant', 'GH' & more!

Dallas | TNT’s sensational reboot kicked off its fresh batch of episodes with a bang, as the aftermath of the blazing inferno and mangled threesome took center stage. Since it premiered, “Dallas” has been one of the best dramas burning up the airwaves and this week’s returning episode proved why. Bobby and Pamela’s sad rebuke of John Ross, the mystery as to who set the fire and Judith Light’s delectably devilish turn as the matriarch of the Ryland family; made for beyond satisfying viewing.

Best New Movie Bets: August 22 | 'Sin City 2' + more

Best New Bet: “Sin City: A Dame to Kill For"

 Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller co-direct this adaptation of Miller’s second installment in the “Sin City” series. When the original “Sin City” was released 10 years ago, it was a visual rarity. An ode to the black-and-white noirs of the 40’s and 50’s with a contemporary spin. Rodriguez maintained the era’s overall atmosphere, complete with the wooden acting style and a gruff narration.

Let's Discuss: How Taylor Swift Is Making Waves

On Monday, Taylor Swift unveiled the title to her new album (1989), released its first single (“Shake It Off”) and a music video to accompany said song. Swift, one of the biggest names in pop culture, has been ensnared in animus ever since.

TV Report Card | 'Fargo' Season 1 Review

Overview: In this FX drama; a twisted drifter, an unassuming salesman, and an upstanding police officer converge on a path for survival and justice.

Storyline Direction Pros: For 10 episodes Noah Hawley’s complex character study and straightforward plot progression, took viewers through the frostily riveting race towards a reckoning. In Hawley’s quest to investigate the dark side of humanity he also infused the simpler side of the human condition.

Malvo, a deranged hit man, and Lester, a bashful insurance salesman proved to be the linchpins of the season, as their cat-and-mouse game of psychological subterfuge and violent confrontations made for an ever-intriguing mystery. Who would come out on top? It was the question at the heart of the series’ neo-noir story.

Let's Discuss: Whether Pleasing Fans Is A Priority

“You can’t please everyone” is an old adage that rings with unquestionable truth. In the entertainment arena, it is an edict that seemingly absolves creative powers from the responsibility of pleasing fans. There will always be unpopular decisions that send out reactionary shockwaves, and there is no keener an example of this than the vocal supporters of Daytime soaps. With the constant threat of cancellation looming overhead, there should be more pressure than ever to please.

Taylor Swift's Live Steam: Everything You Need to Know

Donning a white crop top and matching skirt, Taylor Swift announced her new album ‘1989’ complete with a retro Polaroid picture serving as the cover art. It will be released October 27th and fans can anticipate a deluxe edition.

The deluxe will incorporate original audio recordings of select songs, taking listeners through the evolution of her creative process. Hard copy CDs will include a pack of 13 Polaroid pictures in an envelope. CD packages will contain various and differing collections of snaps.

TV Rundown: August 10 - 15 | 'PLL', 'True Blood' & more!

Pretty Little Liars: Emily finally came to her senses about Ali in “A Dark Ali”. After ranting about Emily’s undeterred faith in Ali for weeks, she deserves some kudos for finally seeing the light and acknowledging her mistake. As the Liars join forces to fight the foe within, things are about to get exciting.

A major highlight of the episode belonged to Hanna and Mona’s interaction. As interesting as all of the other dynamics on the show are, Hanna and Mona’s frenemy-ship is one of the most compelling of the series and this week proved why.

Best New Movie Bets: August 15 | 'The Giver', 'The Trip to Italy' & more!

Best New Bet: "The Giver"

Lois Lowry’s 1993 children novel gets the film treatment in this adaptation directed by Philip Noyce (who helmed the exceptional 1989 thriller “Dead Calm” among others). “The Giver” centers on a radical society in which there are no emotional variances (peaks and valleys), in an attempt to quell human tensions for a manufactured utopia. When young Jonas (newcomer Brenton Thwaites) becomes the “receiver of knowledge” he is mentored by The Giver (Jeff Bridges) which leads to a possible societal shake up.

There have been a few changes made to the original novel, such as the lead character Jonas being aged from 11 to the more cinematically opportune 16. “The Giver” is anchored by veteran talents, the stupendous Jeff Bridges and Oscar titan Meryl Streep, who takes on a sinister role as the film’s villain.

“True Blood” star Alexander Skarsgard is also in the mix along with music superstar Taylor Swift, in a hopefully more fleshed out role than her part in “Valentine’s Day”. For readers who’ve longed to see the book come to life, it’s been a considerable waiting period and meeting loyal fans’ expectations could prove challenging. For non-readers it’s a chance to take in yet another movie revolving around teenagers battling a dystopian (or in this case “utopian”) society.

Also Opening:

“The Expendables 3” Sylvester Stallone and Jason Statham are back with the latest installment in the “Expendables” franchise and they’ve brought another bevy of 80’s and 90’s action stars with them; including Wesley Snipes, Antonio Banderas and Harrison Ford. While some viewers might be worn out by the premise, it has yet to get boring, personally. A chance to see a multitude of these nostalgic stars in one movie and in some cases, squaring off for the first time, still elicits excitement. 

"Let's Be Cops" stars FOX's "New Girl" co-stars Jake Johnson and Damon Wayans Jr. as a pair of buddies who decide to fake being cops after being in costume for a sorority party gets them mistaken for the real thing. Buddy movies can often give way to some hilarious hi-jinks and it's directed by Luke Greenfield who brought audiences the raunchy 2004 comedy "The Girl Next Door" so it sounds promising.

Movie Review: 'And So It Goes' (2014)

Michael Douglas and Diane Keaton shine in their first joint venture as co-stars. Directed with a deft hand by Rob Reiner, he keeps the heartfelt moments tenderly genuine, while maintaining a comedic bite. “And So It Goes” tells the tale of the curmudgeonly Oren (Douglas) who is emotionally isolated and an annoyance to most of those around him.

Remembering Robin Williams (1951-2014)

As long as I can remember Robin Williams was a part of the cinematic universe. He was a consistent presence who entertained audiences by bringing laughter to one of his countless comedies or surprising in a dramatic turn.

Whether he was a car salesman trying to make a deadline (“Cadillac Man”), a …

TV Rundown: August 3-8: 'Tyrant', 'The Leftovers' & more!

Tyrant: Barry made his boldest grab for power yet, as it becomes increasingly clear that he might be the titular “tyrant” to which the title refers. At first unassuming, Barry continues to descend into a moral void with every passing episode. He has known the depths of Jamal’s madness since the third episode and his lack of action has been disturbing.

Jamal’s latest act of violence towards the end of this week’s episode, while predictable, made for a head-scratcher. There was no motive whatsoever. New to the mix was Molly’s sister, a flighty home-wrecker looking to “find herself” at an opulent palace. It’s a character reminiscent of Tammy’s sister on “Friday Night Lights” who came to live with them at casa de Coach.

Best New Movie Bets: August 8 | 'About Alex' & more!

Best New Bet: "The Maid’s Room"

In 2002 Paula Garces made a memorable impression in the sci-fi adventure movie “Clockstoppers” playing Jesse Bradford’s love interest. Now, 12 years later she takes the lead in this dramatic thriller about a maid who starts working for a wealthy family over the summer and becomes privy to the suspicion that the son might be hiding a lethal secret. Suspense thrillers are currently a rarely produced genre so when one is released there is always a jolt of excitement.

Movie Review: 'Joe' (2013)

A visceral depiction of backwoods life that is authentically searing and hauntingly exasperating. Director David Gordon Green picks up where he left off with his last film “Prince Avalanche”, a slow, character driven drama that drops actors amidst the fray of ordinary people.

“Joe” is somber and comparisons to last year’s indie favorite “Mud” are quickly dispelled as the enchanting whimsy of boyhood that defined the former never breathes in the proximity of the stark realism that conjures “Joe”.

Must-See Movie Review: 'Little White Lies' (2010)

A magnificent ensemble leads this dramatic comedy about a flawed group of friends who head out on a lavish vacation, despite their beloved buddy suffering a severe motorcycle accident shortly before their planned excursion.

Movie Review: 'Lucy' (2014)

Lucy Movie Poster, Review
When it comes to Luc Besson’s illustrious filmography you will find a plethora of cinematic treats. From “La Femme Nikita” to what is arguably his best film, “Leon: The Professional” to last year’s “The Family,” he has supplied a bevy of entertainment throughout his career. “Lucy” joins the annals of his previous work’s entertainment quotient.

TV Rundown: July 27 - August 1: 'Teen Wolf', 'PLL' & more!

Teen Wolf: Scott saved a well-bound Liam and then proclaimed at the end of the episode that he would save everyone on the dead pool (aka the kill list of supernatural persons). Someone has become mighty confident in their abilities.

Elsewhere, Malia and Derick worked to sniff out a mystery and Lydia used her Banshee powers to realize that someone close to the pack is marked for death. Will they actually expire? Here’s hoping they stay among the living.

Pretty Little Liars: Hanna’s downward spiral continued as her fellow Liar’s finally seemed to notice something was amiss. Caleb, who had previously been a positive influence on her, is also backsliding and the two seem destined for a personal oblivion at this juncture.

Best New Movie Bets: August 1 | 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Earns Top Spot

Best New Bet: “Guardians of the Galaxy”

Chris Pratt finaly gets a chance to take on a leading film role in Marvel’s latest superhero movie. The story follows Peter Quill (Pratt), a pilot, who steals an orb desired by the villainous Ronan (Lee Pace). To protect the orb and save the universe, he forges a turbulent alliance with a band of misfits and together they become known as the “Guardians of the Galaxy”. Composed of Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista), Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel) and Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper) they set out to defend the galaxy.