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Caryn James

'Non-Stop': Liam Neeson and Killers on a Plane (Review & '60 Mins.' Video)

  • By Caryn James
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  • February 26, 2014 12:30 AM
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  • 1 Comment
I will see Liam Neeson in anything, which doesn't mean I want to. So it was a relief to find that Non-Stop -- Taken meets Speed on a plane, with a dash of Agatha Christie -- was as breezily entertaining as a commercial action thriller is supposed to be.

Lady Mary Meets Vic Mackey in Funny or Die Spoof

  • By Caryn James
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  • January 3, 2014 10:33 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Lady Mary is the kind of role that could stereotype an actress, but Michelle Dockery has the good sense to be making fun of her aristocratic counterpart already. In this Funny or Die spoof, she plays opposite Michael Chiklis in a pretend -- but painfully close to real -- new TNT crime series, Tough Justice.

'Downton Abbey,' Season 4: Bad Lines, Extra Melodrama, Still Irresistible

  • By Caryn James
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  • January 3, 2014 12:19 PM
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  • 0 Comments
"Kiss me now!" says Lady Edith to her married beau, as they sit the middle of a restaurant. "Kiss me!" says Cora, Countess of Grantham to Lord Grantham as he heads off on a trip. "Kiss me!" says ... oh, at least a couple of other people in season 4 of Downton Abbey, as if writer and creator Julian Fellowes were intermittently channeling dialogue from some bad romance novel.

'Downton Abbey' Ends Season 3: What Will We Do Without You-Know-Who?

  • By Caryn James
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  • February 17, 2013 10:45 PM
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  • 4 Comments
Oh dear, just when things were looking better. . . . If you haven’t watched the game-changing final episode of Downton Abbey, Season 3, you might want to turn back now, because all will be revealed.

'Downton Abbey,' The Middle Class and Money ('Ya Gotta Spend It on Somethin' ')

  • By Caryn James
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  • January 3, 2013 9:01 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Season 3 of Downton Abbey – as soapy, dramatic and witheringly funny as ever, and at times shatteringly sad – begins in the spring of 1920, and everything now has a whiff of the modern. Daisy the kitchen maid rides a bike through the village, Mary and Matthew are planning their wedding, Anna is determined to find the evidence that will free Bates from prison, and in the midst of all that comes the real bombshell. Lord Grantham has made a very bad investment, losing most of his American wife’s fortune; they may have to put Downton on the market. Viewers caught in the 2008 economic crisis can relate.

Charlotte Rampling and Michelle Dockery Go Spying in Sundance Channel's 'Restless'

  • By Caryn James
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  • December 7, 2012 9:00 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Once a spy, always a spy – that’s the premise of the sleekly entertaining and wonderfully (if sometimes implausibly) cast thriller Restless. The two-part period piece on Sundance Channel (Part 1 premieres tonight, Part 2 next Friday) offers a double-whammy of time periods. The story begins in the 1970’s with a single mother and graduate student named Ruth Gilmartin. Because she is played by Michelle Dockery  -- Lady Mary from Downton Abbey – and is every bit as commonsensical as that character we get the added wit of seeing Lady Mary transported to the future, where she wears hippie-chic bellbottoms and oversize sunglasses.

Previewing The Irresistible Downton Abbey Finale: There Will Be Answers

  • By Caryn James
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  • February 17, 2012 2:16 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Heading into this Sunday’s Christmas-themed finale of Downton Abbey, you might worry that the season would end with another excruciating cliff-hanger. Mary and Matthew are undoubtedly in love, but will the question of their on-and-off and currently still-off engagement be resolved? (Really, only House and Cuddy were more back-and-forth about things.) I won’t give away the resolution, but there is one at the end. The series could have ended there, but this second-season conclusion also sets us up for season 3 -  and of course, who knows what might change then?

Best Downton Abbey Mashups and Parodies

  • By Caryn James
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  • February 11, 2012 9:01 AM
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  • 1 Comment
One of the surest signs that Downton Abbey has become a full-blown hit and pop-cult phenomenon is the mini- and strained flap that has erupted about whether it is snobbish or middle-brow or an old-fashioned soap opera. I don’t see why it can’t be all three. The series satisfies our indulgent fantasies of an old-fashioned life of leisure. Of course we know it’s pure illusion; even Michelle Dockery, who  plays Lady Mary, told David Letterman about her working-class roots, and the fact that her ancestors would surely have worked downstairs.  But what a satisfying fantasy!

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