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RECAP: "The Walking Dead" Season Two, episode 5, "Chupacabra."

"The Walking Dead" has craft and atmosphere; if only the characters weren't so insufferably earnest and dense. This recap contains spoilers for "The Walking Dead" Season Two, episode 5, "Chupacabra." Read at your own risk.
  • By Matt Zoller Seitz
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  • November 14, 2011 4:29 AM
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RECAP: A bear, a baseball glove and Boardwalk Empire

“Powerful” episodes of cable dramas make a huge impression on viewers, and are often acclaimed as the best of their season. Sometimes the praise is deserved; other times it’s a reaction to the sight of characters we like being diagnosed with fatal illnesses, beaten, raped, killed, etc. Meanwhile, low-key but complex episodes often get short shrift from critics and viewers. I hope that doesn’t happen with tonight’s “Boardwalk Empire” episode, “Two Boats and a Lifeguard,” because in degree of difficulty, it’s impressive, in some ways extraordinary. As written by Terence Winter and directed by Tim Van Patten — a dynamic duo on a lot of great “Sopranos” episodes — “Two Boats and a Lifeguard” seems like just a “housekeeping” episode that’s mainly concerned with wrangling subplots and exploring characters. But as I’ll explain in a moment, the episode went way beyond that.
  • By Matt Zoller Seitz
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  • November 14, 2011 3:53 AM
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Eastwood's "J. Edgar" takes few risks with its controversial subject

You'd think Clint Eastwood would be the right guy to direct a movie about J. Edgar Hoover. After all, who better to tell the story of the 20th century's most influential law enforcement officer, the man who wrote the rule book on fighting crime only to disregard those rules when they prevented him from getting his man, than Dirty Harry himself? Or, to be less obvious, what would the man responsible for "White Hunter Black Heart," "A Perfect World" and "Million Dollar Baby" — movies about men who defied authority, be it Hollywood, the law or God — bring to the life story of the man who held authority over the country for nearly 50 years? Alas, Clint Eastwood's stately biopic "J. Edgar" is a frustrating experience. For nearly 2 hours and 20 minutes we are held captive by the possibility of a major revelation or insight into a man whose obsession with cataloging every single detail of a person's personal and professional lives foretold the collapse of privacy. We get hints, intimations and suggestions of darker urges that shaped Hoover's behavior, but nothing concrete about the man's personality, and no attitude whatsoever toward his actions. Eastwood mistakes vagueness for ambiguity and puts us in the position of being armchair psychiatrists.
  • By Aaron Aradillas
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  • November 10, 2011 9:29 PM
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  • 1 Comment

MATT ZOLLER SEITZ: The big tease of "Glee"

Really, Glee? Was it really necessary to end an episode revolving around virginity loss with a shot of a roaring fireplace? That’s a trick question. Midway through its third season there’s little that’s necessary about Glee, save for the underused Chris Colfer’s performance as out gay teenager Kurt Hummel, the even more severely underused Mike O’Malley’s performance as his dad, one out of every five musical numbers, and Sue Sylvester’s surreal rants, which Jane Lynch sells even when the writing is just sassy word salad. And even those compensatory values aren’t enough to make me watch each week.
  • By Matt Zoller Seitz
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  • November 9, 2011 3:07 AM
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  • 1 Comment

MATT ZOLLER SEITZ: The awesome, thrilling spectacle of Vietnam?

Before I review “Vietnam in HD,” the six-hour History Channel epic, I need to get a couple of caveats out of the way. First, if you have a high definition television, access to the History Channel’s HD signal, and a killer home stereo system, you should record the series and watch it in a dark room with no interruptions, preferably while indulging your inebriating substance of choice. It’s a sound and light show extraordinaire — a trip.
  • By Matt Zoller Seitz
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  • November 9, 2011 12:24 AM
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SLIDE SHOW: THE SIMPSONS save halloween, again

  • By Matt Zoller Seitz
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  • November 1, 2011 9:54 PM
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RECAP: THE WALKING DEAD, Season 2, Episode 3: Save The Last One

Editor’s Note: The following recap of The Walking Dead season 2, episode 3 contains spoilers; read at your own risk.
  • By Matthew Seitz
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  • October 31, 2011 11:35 AM
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  • 0 Comments
More: Television

VERTIGOED: NIGHT MOVES

VERTIGOED - Night Moves (1975) from La Belle Aurore Films on Vimeo.
  • By John Levy
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  • May 1, 2011 10:53 AM
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  • 1 Comment

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