“The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies”: At Last, Closure

Hobbit

Sometimes, low expectations pay off.

I skipped the second movie in the unnecessarily protracted trilogy of Peter Jackson’s Hobbit movies because I found the first one laborious and lumbering. In The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Jackson & Co. mistake a lengthy running time and an enormous budget for grandeur and momentum. The narrative progresses listlessly, with an endless opening sequence that establishes the characters and plot in painstaking detail, lengthy battle sequences that neither advance the plot nor illuminate the characters, and an inevitably inconclusive ending that left me with little enthusiasm for one more round, let alone two.

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The M&M Report, Episode 23: Ty Meems

Pharrell and Lupita

Listen to Episode 23 of The M&M Report here.

(Note: “Ty Meems” is “The M&M Report” Travoltified.)

This week on The M&M Report, Devin Mitchell and I sat down as soon as the Oscars to unwind with thoughts on Ellen DeGeneres, Lupita Nyong’o, Steve McQueen, Matthew McConaughey, Cate Blanchett, pizza, selfies and much more.

Thanks for listening!

The M&M Report, Episode 22: Wrong Side of the Tracks

House of Cards

Listen to Episode 22 of The M&M Report here.

This week on The M&M Report, Devin and I welcomed a very special guest: self-described “House of Cards enthusiast” Leah Doolittle. Leah and Devin kicked off the podcast with an in-depth discussion of the best and worst of season 2, from the twist in the premiere to the shockers later.

After Devin and Leah’s discussion, I offered my thoughts (okay, a rant) on the subject of pop-culture shaming in the first installment of Mark Occasionally Doesn’t Like Things. Why is it acceptable for people to tell me that I have to watch House of Cards just because they watch it and think it’s cool? It’s not.

Finally, Devin and I offered some brief thoughts on Jimmy Fallon‘s first week as host of The Tonight Show. So far, Jay hasn’t breathed a word in dissent, but there’s still time.

Next week, we’ll be doing something special. Instead of doing another preview of the Oscars and then talking about the show a week later, when you’ll have already forgotten about it, Devin and I will press “Record” immediately after the telecast ends on Sunday night, and you can listen to it by Monday morning. We’ll talk best and worst moments, biggest surprises and much more.

Until next time…thanks for listening!

Click through for the time breakdown.

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Golden Globes 2014: Who Will Win…and Who Should

Amy Tin

Just for fun, here are my predictions for tomorrow night’s Golden Globe awards, presented without comment. Let’s see how many I get right, based almost entirely on speculation. Bonus: my preferences in every category except the ones in which I’ve seen none of the nominees.

Best Picture, Drama: 12 Years a Slave
My pick: 12 Years a Slave

Best Actress, Drama: Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
My pick: Cate Blanchett

Best Actor, Drama: Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
My pick: Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave

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