Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...

Caryn James

TV Review: “Our America With Lisa Ling,” Newest on OWN

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • February 15, 2011 2:01 AM
  • |
  • 14 Comments
Our America with Lisa Ling (premiering tonight at 10 ET) has a lot that’s promising, and even more that reveals why Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network is struggling with its ratings, why it will be a challenge to move beyond devoted Oprah-istas.
More: TV Reviews

TV Review. "Season 25: Oprah Behind the Scenes," Best on OWN

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • February 15, 2011 2:00 AM
  • |
  • 1 Comment
A month and half after its premiere, one thing is clear about Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network: it’s biggest ratings success, the show people are actually talking about and loving, is Season 25: Oprah Behind the Scenes, which follows the star and her staff as they put together the final season of The Oprah Winfrey Show. Piggybacking on the success of the daytime show is not what makes Season 25 so appealing, though.
More: TV Reviews

TV Review: Samuel L. Jackson, Tommy Lee Jones Film Cormac McCarthy

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • February 10, 2011 4:46 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Tommy Lee Jones and Samuel L. Jackson are confined to a single room in The Sunset Limited, but this film version of Cormac McCarthy’s play distills the same questions that explode in action in his best-known novels and the movies made from them. Just as No Country for Old Men can be seen as a parable of good and evil set in a contemporary gun-slinging West, and The Road projects issues of faith and responsibility across a barren, apocalyptic landscape, the two characters who sit and talk in a shabby New York apartment here deal with moral issues of light and dark straight out of Milton.
More: TV Reviews

TV Review. Bad Title, Funny Show: Matthew Perry's Mr. Sunshine

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • February 8, 2011 3:30 AM
  • |
  • 5 Comments
Strange as this sounds, Matthew Perry’s horribly-titled new ABC series, Mr. Sunshine, is pretty funny, his thoroughly unsunny character like a comic version of House. I actually laughed out loud twice during the pilot, which is twice more than with most sitcoms.
More: TV Reviews

TV Review: Jarecki's "Reagan" Rises Above the Centennial Chatter

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • February 7, 2011 2:30 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Actors are lying all the time, projecting a made-up persona, yet you have to be able to look in their eyes and see something true. That paradoxical job description goes a long way toward explaining the actor-turned-politician phenomenon, and no actor was ever more politically successful than Ronald Reagan.
More: TV Reviews

TV Review: Eye-Opening HBO Doc About “An Afghan Fallen Star”

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • January 26, 2011 2:30 AM
  • |
  • 6 Comments
Afghan Star, Havana Marking’s illuminating 2009 doc about the Afghan version of American Idol, leaves you wondering what happening to its most compelling character: not the young man who won the competition, but Setara, who responded to being voted off by doing more than singing in her modestly veiled costume. She actually danced – scandalous enough even in the post-Taliban years – and let her scarf fall off her head, leading to death threats against her. Now Marking give us an eye-opening follow-up about Setara, who is not quite the rebel many viewers might have expected. .
More: TV Reviews

TV: Skins Returns, Resembling The Little Fockers

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • January 24, 2011 6:22 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Since MTV’s Skins premiered last week, the show about sex-drug-and-alcohol-fueled teens has hit the headlines in a snowball of outlandish responses, beginning with an inflammatory front-page story in the New York Times. According to the story, unnamed MTV executives suddenly worried that the show might violate child pornography laws, which say children cannot be shown in sexually explicit or suggestive situations. And (whoops!) MTV had already made a big deal of the fact that its actors are actual teenagers. Since then, several advertisers dropped out of the series, including Taco Bell, GM and Wrigley. (Even though the first show had a substantial audience for MTV, over 3 million viewers.)
More: TV Reviews

Rickygate, Day 5: Ricky Speaks. Video Highlights.

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • January 21, 2011 3:52 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
Piers Morgan was trying – more like straining – to be clever when he deadpanned his intro to Ricky Gervais’ appearance on Piers Morgan Tonight: “Some say his crime was worse than Watergate.” But it does feel like we’re in Day 5 of Rickygate, the post-Golden Globes dissection of his brilliant skewering of Hollywood self-importance and egotism. This was a much luckier booking for Morgan's show than Oprah was.
More: TV Reviews

TV Tonight: Amy Poehler's "Parks and Rec" and Other Smart Sitcoms

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • January 20, 2011 6:24 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
There are so few really smart network sitcoms -- I'd count four, including ABC's Modern Family -- it's hard to say whether it's good or bad that three of them are back-to-back on NBC on Thursday. The network has been floundering for years, but it has also been steadily redefining its comedy with series like The Office and the brilliant 30 Rock that rely on droll wit rather than punchlines.
More: TV Reviews

TV Review, Onion News on IFC

  • By Caryn James
  • |
  • January 20, 2011 4:23 AM
  • |
  • 0 Comments
The Onion’s website promotes its new mock-news show, Onion News Network, with a pitch-perfect skewering of cable blowhards and anchors: the fake network’s stereotypical blonde anchor, Brooke Alvarez, is “Smugger than Keith Olbermann. Louder than Sean Hannity. Prettier than Anderson Cooper.” That ad is also funnier than most of what you’ll find on the half-hour show. (It starts Friday on IFC, 10 ET.)
More: TV Reviews

Follow Caryn James

Email Updates

Most "Liked"

  • 'The Knick': Steven Soderbergh Recasts ...
  • Swinton and Hiddleston in Jarmusch's ...
  • Michael Fassbender and The Band From ...