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Thompson on Hollywood

Now and Then: 'Enlightened,' HBO's Masterpiece of Heartbreak

"Enlightened" opens with Amy Jellicoe (Laura Dern) gag-sobbing in a bathroom stall, mascara streaking down her cheeks in mournful black rivulets. Like the rest of Season 1 of HBO's masterpiece, which returns for Season 2 on Sunday at 9:30, it isn't all that funny. But to call "Enlightened" simply a comedy is unjust: it's a symphony of regret.
  • By Matt Brennan
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  • January 7, 2013 2:01 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Bizarro, A-List Movies Lead HBO Lineup: TCA Winter Press Tour 2013

Two provocative new star-driven movies – both about real-life musical geniuses whose lives took a dark turn – dominated HBO’s presentation Friday at the Television Critics Association press tour in Pasadena. In one, Al Pacino plays reclusive record producer Phil Spector, convicted in 2009 of the gunshot murder of B-movie actress and House of Blues hostess Lana Clarkson. David Mamet directed from his own screenplay, and Helen Mirren plays Spector’s defense lawyer. The other, directed by Steven Soderbergh, features Michael Douglas as the late impresario Liberace, and Matt Damon as his much-younger chauffer and lover, Scott Thorson.
  • By Amy Dawes
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  • January 5, 2013 4:03 PM
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  • 1 Comment

HBO to Premiere 'Parade's End' Miniseries This February, Starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Rebecca Hall

UK five-part mini series "Parade's End," adapted from Ford Madox Ford's novels, will premiere on February 26-28. Benedict Cumberbatch, Rebecca Hall and Adelaide Clemens star and are directed by Susanna White. Tom Stoppard penned the drama, set in early 20th century Edwardian England.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 4, 2013 5:57 PM
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  • 1 Comment

HBO Announces Documentary Film Lineup for 2013, including 'Mea Maxima Culpa' and 'Life and Times of Tim Hetherington'

HBO announces their documentary lineup for the first half of 2013, including Alex Gibney's "Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God," Sebastian Junger's "Which Way is the Front Line from Here?: The Life and Times of Tim Hetherington" and Steven Pressman's "50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 4, 2013 3:58 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Julian Fellowes Talks 'Downton Abbey' and The Crawleys in Season Three Preview

PBS features "Downton Abbey" creator Julian Fellowes in a brief video previewing season three...
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 4, 2013 12:45 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Tom Hanks Narrates NatGeo's 'Killing Lincoln,' Based on Bill O'Reilly's Book

There's more Lincoln in store, and it's lined up at the National Geographic Channel. "Killing Lincoln" is based on Bill O'Reilly's book about the final days of the president and John Wilkes Booth's plot to kill him...
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 3, 2013 1:29 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Now and Then: 'Justified' and the Anti-Antihero

Tony Soprano. Dexter Morgan. Walter White. Television's latest "Golden Age," on cable and in the ancillary afterlife, is full of men who break bad. Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant), the U.S. Marshall at the heart of "Justified," may not be squeaky clean, but he's a saint by comparison — and the key to the series' subtle genius.
  • By Matt Brennan
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  • January 3, 2013 7:22 AM
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  • 5 Comments

Is TV As Gay Friendly As We Think It Is?

NPR delivered a superbly reported expose on its January 2 Morning Edition: "Who's Gay on TV?" White gay dads, they concluded, are "the pop culture gay flavor of the minute."
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • January 2, 2013 4:08 PM
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  • 4 Comments

What TV to Watch this Winter: 'Downton,' 'Girls,' 'Top of the Lake,' 'House of Cards' and More [VIDEO]

Check out this photo gallery from the Daily Beast on the 18 TV shows to watch this winter. Included in the list are buzzy returning series like PBS' "Downton Abbey," HBO's "Girls," FX's "Justified" and IFC's "Portlandia," while intriguing newcomers like Netflix's David Fincher-Kevin Spacey collaboration "House of Cards" and Jane Campion's Elisabeth Moss-starrer "Top of the Lake" also make the cut. Left off presumably because it is already under way is BBC America's guilty pleasure second season of "The Hour," starring Romola Garai ("Atonement"), Ben Whishaw ("Skyfall") and Dominic West ("300").
  • By Beth Hanna
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  • January 2, 2013 12:26 PM
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  • 0 Comments

'Downton Abbey' Christmas Special Spoilers Cause Twittersphere Uproar, Ruining Season 3 for American Audience

"Downton Abbey" fans, you might want to block your ears and eyes. The UK regularly enjoys their native period drama before us Yankees, so spoilers are to be expected for those following "Abbey" chatter.
  • By Sophia Savage
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  • December 26, 2012 1:55 PM
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  • 2 Comments

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