Movies & TV


Documentaries, character studies and more streaming this week

Here’s a look at some interesting new releases available to rent from cable and digital providers and a new title that has recently become available for streaming. Video on Demand “Obit”: Vanessa Gould’s documentary follows the veteran writers at the New York Times who head up the obituary section. Longtime editor William McDonald is featured along with his current team, former...
‘Annabelle: Creation’ scares up a box-office win as summer winds down

‘Annabelle: Creation’ scares up a box-office win as summer winds down

Movie audiences said hello to a scary dolly over the weekend. The horror film “Annabelle: Creation” proved a winner, bringing in an estimated $35 million in its opening weekend in the U.S. and Canada, above studio expectations of $25 million to $30 million and analysts’ projections of $25 million. “We’re absolutely thrilled and elated that audiences really embraced Annabelle...
Filmmakers preserve legacy of East Sixth Street bar La Perla

Filmmakers preserve legacy of East Sixth Street bar La Perla

The old pay phone inside the small East Sixth Street Tejano bar La Perla doesn’t work anymore, but it still hangs on the wall — now just a memory of a time when a ring might have nudged husbands to scoot home earlier than they hoped. La Perla, a neighborhood bar since about the 1940s, has not only withstood the fads of time but has weathered the rapid neighborhood changes all around it...
Mediocre ‘Nut Job 2’ has some radical themes

Mediocre ‘Nut Job 2’ has some radical themes

You never know where you’re going to find the most radical ideas. Somehow, a sub-par animated film sequel intended to quiet the kids for a few hours on a weekend afternoon burns with a proletarian rage. You’d never expect that from “The Nut Job 2: Nutty By Nature,” but somehow, it’s true. First, a warning about truth (or lack thereof) in advertising. In “The Nut...
Longhorn ‘Bachelorette’ Rachel Lindsay plans to take her new fiancé to the Texas-OU game

Longhorn ‘Bachelorette’ Rachel Lindsay plans to take her new fiancé to the Texas-OU game

It’s practically a rite of passage when you’re in a relationship with a Longhorn.  Dallas native and University of Texas grad Rachel Lindsay, whose engagement to 37-year-old Bryan Abasolo was unveiled on the season finale of “The Bachelorette” on Monday night, will be putting her relationship to the test this fall by taking her new beau to the State Fair of Texas...
‘Brigsby Bear’ is charming tribute to joys of fandom, filmmaking

‘Brigsby Bear’ is charming tribute to joys of fandom, filmmaking

“Brigsby Bear” opens with well-worn VHS footage from a long-running but curiously little-seen children’s show called “Brigsby Bear Adventures,” about a talking ursine hero whose magical quests yield tidy if not always intuitive moral lessons (i.e. “Curiosity is an unnatural emotion!”). With its low-grade videography and special effects that could charitably...
‘Person to Person’ can’t make a connection

‘Person to Person’ can’t make a connection

Writer-director Dustin Guy Defa achieves something quite remarkable in “Person to Person”: A dialogue-driven film following more than a dozen characters during the course of one day in New York City, with not one convincing situation or performance. When you have actors such as Michael Cera, Philip Baker Hall and rising comedian/actress Abbi Jacobson, that’s hard to do. Cera and...
‘Step’ is the feel-good sleeper of the summer

‘Step’ is the feel-good sleeper of the summer

The movies have given us lots of reasons to feel exhilarated this summer, from the pop-feminist stylings of Gal Gadot in “Wonder Woman” to the goofy ensemble kick-in-the-pants that is “Girls Trip.” And now we have “Step,” a soaring, heart-bursting portrait of a group of intrepid Baltimore high school students guaranteed to bring audiences to their feet — whether...
‘Wind River’ is a crime drama with a big heart

‘Wind River’ is a crime drama with a big heart

“Wind River,” the latest from acclaimed screenwriter/director Taylor Sheridan, does something remarkable. It exudes empathy and warmth despite occurring in the most formidably harsh winter setting — on a remote Native American reservation in Wyoming, where no humans were ever meant to live. The dangers of the environment are obvious in the opening scene of a young woman running barefoot...
Movies in theaters, 8/11/17

Movies in theaters, 8/11/17

NEW THIS WEEK “Wind River” Grade: B+. Review page 26 “The Glass Castle” Grade: B-. Review page 27 “The Nut Job 2” Grade: C-. Review page 28 “Brigsby Bear” Grade: B. Review page 31 “Person to Person” Grade: D. Review page 32 “Step” Grade: A. Review page 29 NOT REVIEWED “Annabelle: Creation.” R. 109 minutes. The possessed...
‘The Glass Castle’ makes tricky transition to screen

‘The Glass Castle’ makes tricky transition to screen

Writer-director Destin Daniel Cretton has built a body of work that takes a magnifying glass to the individual surviving within a group, weaving portraits of stealth emotional impact. In his breakout film “Short Term 12,” which launched Brie Larson and Lakeith Stanfield into their respective stardoms, Cretton examined the ecosystem of humans living and working in a long-term foster care...
Rob Lowe sends heartfelt message to Austin woman in final days of cancer battle

Rob Lowe sends heartfelt message to Austin woman in final days of cancer battle

An Austin woman got help spreading lung cancer awareness in her final days of battling the disease thanks to a special shoutout from her favorite celebrity.  Alex Charpentier has loved Rob Lowe since she was a teenager, and as the 48-year-old single mom battled cancer from her hospice bed, her family reached out to the “Parks and Recreation” and “West Wing”...
‘Sing,’ ‘Snatched’ and more you should stream this week

‘Sing,’ ‘Snatched’ and more you should stream this week

Here’s a look at some interesting new releases available to rent from cable and digital providers and a title that recently became available for streaming. Video on Demand “A Life in Waves”: You may not know the name Suzanne Ciani, but there’s a strong possibility that her work has permeated your life. A pioneer at the forefront of electronic music, she has utilized a wide...
In dustup over ‘Wonder Woman’ screenings, Alamo offers men free DVDs

In dustup over ‘Wonder Woman’ screenings, Alamo offers men free DVDs

Promoting female-only “Wonder Woman” screenings was a violation of Austin’s equality laws, the Alamo Drafthouse acknowledged in a letter to the city last month. To settle the anti-discrimination complaints, the Drafthouse has offered to send each of the men who filed a complaint a DVD of the film. The city processed two formal complaints against the theater for the two female-only...
‘Dark Tower’ unseats ‘Dunkirk’ at box office

‘Dark Tower’ unseats ‘Dunkirk’ at box office

The long-awaited sci-fi-western “The Dark Tower,” from Sony Pictures and Media Rights Capital, shot straight to No.1 at the box office, unseating Christopher Nolan’s “Dunkirk.” “The Dark Tower,” based on a Stephen King fantasy series, opened to an estimated $19.5 million in the U.S. and Canada, in line with studio projections of $19 million and just short...
‘Sex and the City’ actor Cynthia Nixon reportedly considering run for NY governor

‘Sex and the City’ actor Cynthia Nixon reportedly considering run for NY governor

Cynthia Nixon’s name is being mentioned as a possible candidate for governor of New York. The Wall Street Journal was the first to report Friday that the “Sex & the City” actress has been approached by liberal groups encouraging her to mount a Democratic primary challenge against Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Nixon is active in liberal politics in the state. She has not weighed in on her possible...
Chip Gaines of ‘Fixer Upper’ shoots down rumors he and Joanna are splitting up

Chip Gaines of ‘Fixer Upper’ shoots down rumors he and Joanna are splitting up

Chip Gaines is addressing rumors that he and his “Fixer Upper” wife Joanna might be calling it quits, and he’s definitely setting the record straight. Late Friday night, a Twitter user shared that she is “sick of these ‘stories’ claiming @joannagaines and @chippergaines [are] breaking up,” adding, “Leave this couple alone they are wonderful together...
Hollywood keeps wasting Idris Elba’s talent, and it’s a huge loss

Hollywood keeps wasting Idris Elba’s talent, and it’s a huge loss

As the troubled, long-awaited adaptation of Stephen King’s “The Dark Tower” rolls out to dismal reviews this week, I’ve had to resist banging my head against the wall in frustration, and not because I’m a King aficionado grappling with shattering disappointment. Rather, “The Dark Tower” is the latest frustrating example of how nothing ever seems to go quite...
One filmmaker’s road from a Texas ranch to the red carpet in Cannes

One filmmaker’s road from a Texas ranch to the red carpet in Cannes

When “Wind River” opens in Austin on Aug. 11, it’ll mark the completion of a former Austinite’s cinematic trilogy that explores failure — rather than triumph — on the modern American frontier. Screenwriter Taylor Sheridan’s 2015 drug-war drama “Sicario” looked at violence along the U.S.-Mexico border, his 2016 Western crime thriller “Hell...
‘The Dark Tower’ a pale version of Stephen King’s story

‘The Dark Tower’ a pale version of Stephen King’s story

If “The Dark Tower” had just been an action film laced with grand sweeps of magic and textured touches of science fiction based on an original script, there’s enough interesting moments to earn the film a passing grade. The sad fact is it’s not an original story from writer/director Nikolaj Arcel, but based on a wildly popular series of eight books by the master of macabre...
Movies in theaters, 8/4/17

Movies in theaters, 8/4/17

OPENING FRIDAY “Detroit” Grade: A-. Review page 25 “Landline” Grade: B-. Review page 27 “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power” Grade: A-. Review page 26 NOT REVIEWED “The Dark Tower.” PG-13. 95 minutes. The movie adaptation of the Stephen King fantasy epic about the last Gunslinger (Idris Elba) who is locked in an everlasting battle with the Man in...
Film is surprisingly empowering look at climate change

Film is surprisingly empowering look at climate change

With articles about climate change going viral on social media, reports of extreme weather events and melting glaciers circling in the news, and the president’s recent decision to leave the Paris climate accord, it seems that this couldn’t be a better or scarier time for “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power” to hit theaters. A follow-up to former Vice President Al Gore and...
Summer isn’t over yet — you can still see these films in theaters

Summer isn’t over yet — you can still see these films in theaters

Summer movies come at you fast — sometimes it seems like flicks, even good ones, are in theaters one week and gone the next. Here are six good ones that are still around. “Wonder Woman.” Currently sitting on a stunning world-wide gross of $786 million (divided almost precisely in half between foreign and domestic, an unusual feat these days), “Wonder Woman” is single-handedly...
‘Landline’ coasts on ’90s nostalgia

‘Landline’ coasts on ’90s nostalgia

Three of the key creative members of 2014’s heartfelt abortion dramedy “Obvious Child” have re-teamed for the ’90s family comedy “Landline.” Director Gillian Robespierre once again joins forces with writer Elisabeth Holm and star Jenny Slate for this story about multi-generational complications of life and love. The specificity with which Holm and Robespierre have...
Alright, alright, alright: 11 great Matthew McConaughey roles

Alright, alright, alright: 11 great Matthew McConaughey roles

What with “The Dark Tower” opening this weekend and Austin favorite son Matthew McConaughey starring in it (and dressed exactly like he just stepped out of one of his Lincoln ads), we’re taking a look at eleven McConaperfomances and putting them into a definitive (yes, definitive) McConaranking. It is entirely possible your favorite isn’t on here, especially if you liked &ldquo...
‘Detroit’ is an uncomfortable but compelling look at real-life horrors

‘Detroit’ is an uncomfortable but compelling look at real-life horrors

“Detroit” is excruciating. And it’s outrageously good filmmaking, shining a light on a crucial period in our nation’s history: the African-American rioting of 1967 that tore Motown apart. Director Kathryn Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal approach the larger issues surrounding racial injustice by zeroing in on one real-life character, Larry Reed, the lead singer for an R&B...
WATCH: McConaughey shares new catch phrases over bourbon with Stephen Colbert

WATCH: McConaughey shares new catch phrases over bourbon with Stephen Colbert

The prince of Austin Matthew McConaughey joined CBS “Late Show” host Stephen Colbert on the couch Monday night ostensibly to publicize his role as the Man in Black in the film adaptation of Stephen King’s novel “The Dark Tower.” But McConaughey also continued to shamelessly plug Wild Turkey as the Kentucky bourbon maker’s “creative...
Anne Hathaway and Nacho Vigalondo join forces, and it’s ‘Colossal’

Anne Hathaway and Nacho Vigalondo join forces, and it’s ‘Colossal’

Here’s a look at an interesting new release available to rent from cable and digital providers and a few titles that have recently hit streaming services. Video on Demand “Colossal”: Spanish filmmaker Nacho Vigalondo took on his biggest budget and cast with this ambitious and darkly comic tale of Gloria, an alcoholic writer (Anne Hathaway) coming fresh off a failed relationship and...
‘Confederate’ series facing vehement backlash, critics demand HBO scrap it

‘Confederate’ series facing vehement backlash, critics demand HBO scrap it

Any hopes HBO had that it had calmed the “Confederate” fallout last week were dashed big time on Sunday night. Foes of the future series from “Game of Thrones'” creators took to Twitter during the “GOT” season finale to make their feelings known. As the latest “Winter is coming” machinations played out onscreen, HBO came out with a formal statement about...
Matthew McConaughey talks about how he named his son Matthew without naming him Matthew 

Matthew McConaughey talks about how he named his son Matthew without naming him Matthew 

One of the wonderful things about Matthew McConaughey press tours is that we learn so much.  Recall when he talked about his father buying a hot watch when he was promoting “Gold” and where his hair for that movie came from. Over on “Good Morning America,” our hero revealed that his eldest son, Levi, 9, is named for the actor’s favorite Bible verse, Matthew...
‘Dunkirk’ is still holding own against box-office rivals

‘Dunkirk’ is still holding own against box-office rivals

In this weekend’s box-office battle, Sony newcomer “The Emoji Movie” was no competition for Warner Bros.’ “Dunkirk.” The WWII drama took first place for a second week with an estimated $28.1 million in the U.S. and Canada, beating analyst expectations of $25 million. Grosses for “Dunkirk” have been bolstered by powerful reviews and widespread interest...
McConaughey, music and a trip back to camp

McConaughey, music and a trip back to camp

Here are some of the best and highest-profile new releases in music, movies, TV and more on the horizon in August. As always, dates are subject to change without notice. 1. “Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later” (Netflix) Look, it could be not so great. I fully acknowledge this. But I also submit that “Wet Hot American Summer” finally getting its due over the past few years...
‘Game of Thrones’ must end tragically to be true to itself

‘Game of Thrones’ must end tragically to be true to itself

After Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) set triumphant sail for Westeros at the end of the sixth season of “Game of Thrones,” and after a rather talky beginning to the seventh season of the series, the end of the most recent episode of the show came as something of a shock. Euron Greyjoy (Pilou Asbæk), the recently crowned pirate king of the Iron Islands, got the jump on Dany&rsquo...
Dinges: After health scare, KVUE anchor ready to return to work

Dinges: After health scare, KVUE anchor ready to return to work

Jenni Lee was in the middle of anchoring KVUE’s “Weekend Daybreak” when it happened. Blurry vision. A hellacious headache. Nausea. Something was clearly very, very wrong. “I couldn’t even read the TelePrompTer,” she said. “I went straight to the ER after that.” After some tests, doctors told her, in essence, that part of her brain was dangling into her...
Here are the best bad reviews of ‘The Emoji Movie’

Here are the best bad reviews of ‘The Emoji Movie’

So “The Emoji Movie,” an animated feature film starring the voice talent of T.J. Miller, James Corden, Anna Farris, Maya Rudolph and others of presumably sound mind, opens today. And it is getting SLAUGHTERED. It is currently holding a legit stunning 0 percent over at reviews aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.  Yes, zero. Zilch, nada, zip.  “A big (expletive) doughnut hole,&rdquo...
‘Atomic Blonde’ loses its punch in second half

‘Atomic Blonde’ loses its punch in second half

The ’80s are back, baby — the fashions, the tunes, the Russian spies. The Cold War is so hot right now, and action thriller “Atomic Blonde” is here to capitalize on that moment. Charlize Theron stars as the titular blonde in this violently stylish spy flick, doing her own version of “John Wick” as a taciturn secret agent with a very impressive set of skills. Directed...
Pugh gives a breakthrough performance in calculated ‘Lady Macbeth’

Pugh gives a breakthrough performance in calculated ‘Lady Macbeth’

Exact and exacting, made with formidable skill and unwavering focus, “Lady Macbeth” is a film that demands to be admired and cares little if you actually like it. A cold and unnerving tale of the twin deranging powers of passion and oppression, it’s a 19th-century costume drama impeccably made on a minuscule budget with some very modern thematic concerns in mind. The first feature...
Movies in theaters, 7/28/17

Movies in theaters, 7/28/17

OPENING FRIDAY “Atomic Blonde” Grade: C+. Review page 23 “City of Ghosts” Grade: A-. Review page 24 “Lady Macbeth” Grade: B. Review page 25 “13 Minutes” Grade: C+. Review page 26 NOT REVIEWED “The Emoji Movie.” PG. 92 minutes. In this animated film, three emojis embark on an epic adventure through a smartphone to save their world from being...
‘Ghosts’ is powerful chronicle of citizen journalists in Syria

‘Ghosts’ is powerful chronicle of citizen journalists in Syria

American audiences have enjoyed a recent spate of documentaries that take us beyond headlines and just-the-facts news stories about the Islamic State, Iraq and Syria and that give us, instead, a glimpse of the people whose lives have been so viciously upended by militancy’s rise in the Middle East. The latest, “City of Ghosts,” chronicles the heroic efforts of citizen journalists...
A portrait of the man behind 1939 plot to kill Hitler

A portrait of the man behind 1939 plot to kill Hitler

The German historical drama “13 Minutes” opens with the sound of strenuous human grunting, accompanied by the regular ticktock of a mechanical timer. It’s Nov. 8, 1939, several hours before an explosive device, planted by Georg Elser, is set to go off, almost killing Adolf Hitler, who, as history tells us, had left the building in which the bomb was planted mere minutes earlier (hence...
Is actor like his meme-able ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’ character?

Is actor like his meme-able ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’ character?

Even in a show as whacked-out and packed with funny people as Netflix’s doomsday-cult comedy “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” Titus Andromedon has a way of stealing a scene. The character, an actor with a voice from the heavens and a wardrobe from a costume shop’s clearance aisle, once sang in the streets of New York in a frilly yellow dress like Beyoncé and used a house...
Slain Austin police officer featured in documentary film on cop deaths

Slain Austin police officer featured in documentary film on cop deaths

A little more than five years ago, an Austin police officer arrived at a Wal-Mart in North Austin, responding to a call about a suspicious, intoxicated man wandering around the aisles. The officer, a 40-year-old retired Marine named Jaime Padron, and a store employee approached the man, Brandon Daniel, near the front entrance of the store at Interstate 35 and Parmer Lane. Padron grabbed Daniel&rsquo...
Get lost in a sci-fi world with Scarlett Johansson

Get lost in a sci-fi world with Scarlett Johansson

Here’s a look at an interesting new release available to rent from cable and digital providers and a few titles that are hitting streaming services this week. Video on Demand “Ghost in the Shell”: Scarlett Johansson was controversially cast as the lead in this adaptation of the popular Japanese manga. Already a proven action hero (see Luc Besson’s “Lucy”), she takes...
‘Dunkirk,’ ‘Girls Trip’ wage war on box-office expectations

‘Dunkirk,’ ‘Girls Trip’ wage war on box-office expectations

In a rare weekend tug-of-war among three wildly different original films, the box-office figures are a testament to big-budget risks begetting big-time payoff — at least, if you’re Christopher Nolan. The releases of Nolan’s “Dunkirk,” Malcolm D. Lee’s “Girls Trip” and Luc Besson’s “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets” marked...
Ice Cube strikes out, delivering worst rendition of ‘Take Me Out to the Ball Game’ ever, maybe

Ice Cube strikes out, delivering worst rendition of ‘Take Me Out to the Ball Game’ ever, maybe

Rapper-turned-actor Ice Cube showed up at Wrigley Field in Chicago to take a swing at an old classic during the seventh inning stretch at the Cubs game on Saturday. Social media lit up afterwards, calling Cube’s rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” one of the worst baseball fans had ever heard. Judge for yourself: But not everyone panned it. Some fans thought the rapper...
‘Wonder Woman II’ in the works after smashing success of part one

‘Wonder Woman II’ in the works after smashing success of part one

A sequel to the summer blockbuster “Wonder Woman” is in the works; at least, that’s the word following a weird Warner Bros. flash card announcement at Comic-Con over the weekend. The studio flashed a title card with the words “Wonder Woman II” during a “Justice League"panel, according to CBS News. Lead actor Gal Gadot is expected to reprise her role as the...
Unaired 'Game of Thrones' episode posted online after HBO hack

Unaired 'Game of Thrones' episode posted online after HBO hack

Update: Citing sources familiar with the HBO hack, The Verge reported that a leaked copy of episode four of the seventh season of “Game of Thrones” came from one of the network’s distribution partners and not from hackers who targeted the company last month. “We take this breach very seriously and have immediately initiated forensic investigations at our and the...
Sam Shepard is the coolest honorary Texan of all time

Sam Shepard is the coolest honorary Texan of all time

If there is such a thing as the ultimate honorary Texan, well, we could all do a lot worse than Sam Shepard. The Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright,  Oscar-nominated actor, author and embodiment of a singular kind of American Western intellectual masculinity has died at the age of 73 from complications of Lou Gehrig's disease, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Seriously, every MFA program...
'Game of Thrones' script appears online after hackers target HBO: reports

'Game of Thrones' script appears online after hackers target HBO: reports

Hackers have targeted HBO in a major cyberattack, stealing unaired episodes from a variety of shows and leaking at least one alleged script from the popular fantasy show “Game of Thrones,” according to multiple reports. In a statement released Monday, network officials confirmed that “proprietary information” was compromised in a cyberattack. “We immediately began investigating...
Ryan Seacrest to return as host of 'American Idol' revival

Ryan Seacrest to return as host of 'American Idol' revival

It’s official: Ryan Seacrest will return to “American Idol” to serve as host for ABC’s reboot of the singing competition. Kelly Ripa made the announcement on Thursday morning’s episode of “Live with Kelly and Ryan.” “We’ve been talking about it for a little while but I am happy to confirm … with absolute confirmation that Ryan Seacrest is...
Chip Gaines rocked a man bun and people are loving it

Chip Gaines rocked a man bun and people are loving it

It’s been a somewhat rocky year for the Gaines family -- the “Fixer Upper” stars caught backlash from a Buzzfeed story about the couple’s Waco church’s anti-LGBTQ views, and Chip Gaines was accused of fraud and sued by his former business partners. But that’s not stopping HGTV’s first family from staying positive, loving life and taking...
Stuntman injured on 'The Walking Dead' set declared dead

Stuntman injured on 'The Walking Dead' set declared dead

A stuntman seriously injured on the set of AMC hit “The Walking Dead” has been declared dead. Richard Hawk, coroner for Coweta County, Georgia, confirmed to WSBTV.com that John Bernecker died Wednesday. Bernecker had been seriously injured in a fall and was taken by medical helicopter to a hospital. “They were doing a stunt and something went wrong,” Hawk told...
'America's Got Talent' pays tribute to contestant killed in crash, share posthumous audition

'America's Got Talent' pays tribute to contestant killed in crash, share posthumous audition

Television talent contest “America’s Got Talent” on Tuesday shared the audition of a Virginia doctor who blew away the judges but died in a car crash before his tryout could air. Dr. Brandon Rogers, 29, was killed June 11 in a car crash in Maryland, just weeks before his performance was scheduled to air. “At the request of his family, we would like to honor his memory by sharing...
How to throw an epic ‘Game of Thrones’ watch party this season

How to throw an epic ‘Game of Thrones’ watch party this season

Season 7 of ‘Game of Thrones’ starts Sunday, and if you’re not planning on going to one of these watch parties in town, you may want to throw your own watch party at home. We’ve gathered some suggestions for how to throw the perfect ‘Thrones’ party, no matter how good (or bad) you are at Pinterest DIYs. Impress your friends (or maybe just make them giggle)...
Winter is here: Where to celebrate ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7 in Austin

Winter is here: Where to celebrate ‘Game of Thrones’ Season 7 in Austin

Winter is no longer coming, it has arrived: The seventh season of “Game of Thrones” premieres on July 16, and there are a number of ways to celebrate its return. Watch the premiere on a 25-foot screen at The North Door. The North Door’s watch parties are the most famous in Austin, and they’re back for another year. Each week to follow, they’ll be showing...
Patrick Dempsey really loves this Texas restaurant’s pie — and no, he’s not moving to New Braunfels

Patrick Dempsey really loves this Texas restaurant’s pie — and no, he’s not moving to New Braunfels

Patrick Dempsey, a.k.a. McDreamy of “Grey’s Anatomy” fame, reportedly bought a home on Lake Jacksonville several years ago, and he’s been splitting his time between Texas and California ever since. And he’s not immune to Texas’ charms: He’s fallen in love with a little restaurant in Jacksonville called Sadler’s Kitchen. In particular, he’s fallen...
Who is the best live-action Spider-Man of all time?

Who is the best live-action Spider-Man of all time?

 So far a mere five actors have played live-action versions of Spider-Man.  Some are good, some are bad, some are just kind of there. Here they are, in ascending order of awesomeness.   The virtually anonymous actor who played Spidey as a silently spelling superhero on "The Electric Company” skits “Spidey Super Stories.” (Man, that’s a lot of alliteration...
Watch: Teens sucked into video game in 'Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle' trailer

Watch: Teens sucked into video game in 'Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle' trailer

More than 20 years after audiences watched a hairy Robin Williams emerge from an enchanted board game, Jumanji is back. Sony Pictures on Thursday morning released a new trailer for “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle.” The film follows the adventures of four high school students who are sucked into the tropical world of Jumanji after they find an old video game console while cleaning out their...
‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ is the best Spidey film in years

‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ is the best Spidey film in years

“Spider-Man: Homecoming” rules. Here are 12 take-aways.  1. No, really, this is the best Spider-Man movie in years, possibly since the first two, “Spider-Man” (2002) and “Spider-Man 2” (and I say that as someone who always thought Tobey Maguire was a little overrated and that Andrew Garfield was a little underrated). 2. Tom Holland, on the other hand,...
If Texas were a Hogwarts house, it would be Slytherin

If Texas were a Hogwarts house, it would be Slytherin

Hey, TIME Magazine said it, not us. For the 20th anniversary of the release of the first Harry Potter novel, TIME worked with the Cambridge University Department of Psychology to create its own Sorting Hat quiz (though there’s no competing with the O.G. quiz on Pottermore, created by Queen J.K. Rowling herself). Since Monday’s anniversary, nearly 330,000 people have taken the quiz...
Movies set in Texas: 10 of the most important since 2001

Movies set in Texas: 10 of the most important since 2001

Inspired by The New York Times’ recent power-rankings of the greatest films of the 21st century so far (which included one of Texas’ own great filmmakers), we decided to look at the most important Texas-set films of the 21st century. Now, these are films that are set  in Texas, not necessarily ...
The Alamo Drafthouse is turning 20 and it is here to party

The Alamo Drafthouse is turning 20 and it is here to party

  It was 20 years ago today (OK, not actually today) that Tim and Karrie League  opened the first Alamo Drafthouse on Colorado St. Over the next two decades, the Alamo Drafthouse rewrote the rules for movie-going.  There had been Drafthouse-style movie theaters before but none with the Leagues’ mix of good food, clever booze, enthusiastic cinephilia, canny genre bookings and a...
Celebrate Harry Potter’s birthday with the Round Rock Express

Celebrate Harry Potter’s birthday with the Round Rock Express

Harry Potter and baseball: it may not sound like a winning combination (although in my humble opinion, anything combined with Harry Potter sounds great) but when a game falls on the wizard’s birthday, well, you run with it. The Round Rock Express is celebrating the 37th birthday of The Boy Who Lived on Monday, July 31 with Harry Potter Night featuring pre-game Quidditch on the field, Hogwarts...
13 things to keep in mind when thinking about the Han Solo movie controversy

13 things to keep in mind when thinking about the Han Solo movie controversy

The Disney-firing-the-directors-of-the-Han-Solo-movie story just keeps chugging along. In sum: Several outlets reported on Tuesday that Disney had fired (yes, fired) directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (“The Lego Movie”) off of the upcoming Han Solo Star Wars spin-off movie.  On Thursday, the Hollywood Reporter reported that Ron Howard, one of the most well-respected mainstream...
San Antonio radio station hosts ‘men-only’ movie screening in response to ‘Wonder Woman’ screenings

San Antonio radio station hosts ‘men-only’ movie screening in response to ‘Wonder Woman’ screenings

After Alamo Drafthouse announced “women-only” screenings of the recently released “Wonder Woman” movie, the theater chain gained national attention. Some praised the theater for its decision to send a message of female empowerment, while others — including a New York attorney who filed a complaint with the City of Austin — claimed the screenings...
‘Transformers: The Last Knight’ is generating some of the summer’s most savage reviews

‘Transformers: The Last Knight’ is generating some of the summer’s most savage reviews

Head over to Rotten Tomatoes. You might notice the reviews for “Transformers: The Last Knight” are in. And they are BRUTAL. Currently clocking a jaw-dropping 15% on RT, “The Last Knight” is very easily one of the year’s most critically maligned films, and the reviews for it are hilariously nuts. To wit: From the Village Voice: “After all is a Transformers movie...
Kirsten Dunst really loves the Alamo Drafthouse and fried pickles

Kirsten Dunst really loves the Alamo Drafthouse and fried pickles

Kirsten Dunst may not be from Texas, but we may as well make her an honorary Texan.  She’s reportedly engaged to Texas actor (and her “Fargo” costar) Jesse Plemons, who was honored at this year’s Texas Film Awards. But she also really loves another Texas staple: the Alamo Drafthouse. On “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” she told Fallon that...
Beat the heat with the Austin summer movie guide

Beat the heat with the Austin summer movie guide

The heat is officially here, so let us celebrate the one thing that unites all Americans during the punishing summer: Seeing movies with air conditioning (or outside after the sun goes down).   Here we go: Looking for the new, new thing? Here are 40 movies opening this summer. Celebrate the brand new beauty that is the Austin Film Society Cinema. Their current slate ...
GIVEAWAY: Get free tickets to an Alamo Drafthouse screening of ‘The Big Sick’

GIVEAWAY: Get free tickets to an Alamo Drafthouse screening of ‘The Big Sick’

Want to see a movie at Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar for free? The Alamo Drafthouse is giving away passes to see “The Big Sick,” a movie based on the real-life courtship of “Silicon Valley” actor Kumail Najiani and Emily V. Gordon. The screening will take place at 6:30 p.m. on June 27 at Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar. Here’s a full synopsis of the film, which...
GIVEAWAY: Get free passes to see ‘Baby Driver’ before it hits theaters

GIVEAWAY: Get free passes to see ‘Baby Driver’ before it hits theaters

What do Jon Hamm, Jamie Foxx and Ansel Elgort have in common? They all star in the upcoming “Baby Driver,” which you can get free passes to see. Click here and enter the code “BabyDriverAAS” to claim your free tickets. The pass is valid for up to two seats for the showing, which takes place at 7:30 p.m. on June 21 at Regal Metropolitan Stadium 14. Passes are...
The ATX TV fest presents a free screening of 'Parks and Rec' with the Pawnee Harvest Festival

The ATX TV fest presents a free screening of 'Parks and Rec' with the Pawnee Harvest Festival

Every year, the ATX TV festival sponsors an event that is free and open to the public. This year? An outdoor screening of “Parks & Recreation” at the Hotel San José Parking Lot (1316 South Congress Ave.) along with their very own version of the Pawnee Harvest Festival. On June 9, look for music courtesy of Jazz Mills & Stephanie Hunt, Dre. Joe and Trent Langley, Harvest Festival...
Still have a VCR? Where to find VHS tapes in Austin

Still have a VCR? Where to find VHS tapes in Austin

    Do you still have a VCR? Would you like to use it? Nobody can blame you. As the VHS tape gave way to the DVD, the Blu-Ray and streaming, thousands and thousands of movies never made the jump to the latter formats or services. Genre films were especially hard hit -- thrillers, horror, science-fiction and the like. A recent NPR story noted that archivists at the XFR Collective are working...
Watch two stoners get their minds blown by Buc-ee’s in upcoming film ‘Ripped’

Watch two stoners get their minds blown by Buc-ee’s in upcoming film ‘Ripped’

Buc-ee’s is pretty amazing. It’s massive, it’s got great food and it has the best bathrooms anywhere in Texas. Well, it’s now featured in an upcoming movie. In “Ripped,” comedians Russell Peters and Faizon Love smoke some top-secret pot from the CIA and are transported 30 years into the future. They’re amazed at the price of gas, why everyone keeps looking...
Austin’s drive-in movie theater has added a bar and a West Austin pop-up theater

Austin’s drive-in movie theater has added a bar and a West Austin pop-up theater

For those who love to feel drive-in movie nostalgia, Austin’s only drive-in theater, Blue Starlite Mini Urban Drive-in, is expanding. The theater, which relocated from the east side to South Austin earlier this year, has now added a bar at the South Austin location and a pop-up location in West Austin. The new Blue Starlite Cinema Saloon will to the public in August, serving local beer and Texas...
Joss Whedon claps back at haters of women-only ‘Wonder Woman’ shows

Joss Whedon claps back at haters of women-only ‘Wonder Woman’ shows

Can’t an Amazon warrior princess make her solo movie debut without being burdened by controversy? Apparently not, as the hits in the saga of Alamo Drafthouse’s women-only “Wonder Woman” screenings keep coming. First, the men who just couldn’t handle the idea of a place for women to celebrate the first female-led superhero blockbuster of the modern era together emerged...
Quidditch is a real sport — and the major leagues are coming to Austin next weekend

Quidditch is a real sport — and the major leagues are coming to Austin next weekend

Any good Harry Potter fan knows that the world’s best fictional sport has actually become reality and it’s gained popularity over the last decade. The sport, played on brooms in J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter” series, was adapted to a real-life full contact sport in 2005 and is particularly popular on college campuses. It’s somewhat of a blend of basketball,...
Amazons, bondage and superhero secretaries: the story of Wonder Woman

Amazons, bondage and superhero secretaries: the story of Wonder Woman

If there is one takeaway from the buzz and hype surrounding “Wonder Woman,” which opens in theaters nationwide June 2, it is that this is a blockbuster that people are taking very, very personally. All the hype is understandable. Starring Israeli actress Gal Gadot as the immortal Amazon, “Wonder Woman” is, with the exception of perhaps “Elektra,” the first superhero...
‘Bachelorette’ Week 2: Dallas’ Rachel Lindsay hangs with celebs and kicks a liar to the curb

‘Bachelorette’ Week 2: Dallas’ Rachel Lindsay hangs with celebs and kicks a liar to the curb

First of all, full disclosure: I watched this week's episode late because Memorial Day, so this recap is a little late. SORRY, FRIENDS. The good news is, the show's nonsense continues regardless of which day you watch it. Also, I messed up and I thought "Tickle Monster" guy went home last week, but he didn't. Forgive me. He's still here, in all his tickle monster glory, on the first group...
Dallas ‘Bachelorette’ Rachel Lindsay makes her debut

Dallas ‘Bachelorette’ Rachel Lindsay makes her debut

Welcome to another season of the beautiful disaster known as the “Bachelor” franchise. This “Bachelorette” season’s star, Dallas native and University of Texas graduate Rachel Lindsay, met her 31 suitors Monday night in an episode that was filled with — you guessed it — drama. Let me just start by saying that Rachel is a badass boss lady. She&rsquo...
5 Great TV shows that can help your preschooler learn a second language

5 Great TV shows that can help your preschooler learn a second language

If you want your kids to speak both English and Spanish, the following bilingual TV shows can support your efforts by helping preschoolers learn new words and phrases in both languages. The shows also teach gentle, age-appropriate lessons such as cooperation, problem-solving, and the importance of family. The main language of these shows is English, but you can find them dubbed in Spanish with phrases...
Set sail on Lady Bird Lake with ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ and ‘Fitzcarraldo’ Memorial Day weekend

Set sail on Lady Bird Lake with ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ and ‘Fitzcarraldo’ Memorial Day weekend

Ahoy! Alamo Drafthouse is hosting two boat parties over Memorial Day weekend, giving Austinites the chance to take a cruise over the long weekend and enjoy a movie. On Saturday, May 27, the Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales Boat Party Adventure features a screening of the film at 11 a.m. at Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar followed by a “pirate adventure” on Lady Bird Lake...
Alamo Drafthouse offers gift certificate to settle Austin texting suit

Alamo Drafthouse offers gift certificate to settle Austin texting suit

The Alamo Drafthouse has long led the charge for no texting or talking during movies, often enlisting celebrities to spread the word. But when founder and CEO Tim League learned about a lawsuit that Brandon Vezmar of Austin filed recently against a woman seeking the cost of her ticket because of her texting during their movie date at the Barton Creek Square theater, League said he was...
GIVEAWAY: Win tickets to watch the new ‘Baywatch’ on a beach

GIVEAWAY: Win tickets to watch the new ‘Baywatch’ on a beach

Want to see the new “Baywatch” with Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron? Want to see it on a beach?  The Alamo Drafthouse is hosting a “Baywatch on the Beach” movie party May 24 at Volente Beach Water Park in Leander, and we’re giving away five pairs of tickets to the event. Tickets include access to the water park as well as dinner, drinks and a shark-themed...
'American Idol' set to return to television

'American Idol' set to return to television

Just over a year after “American Idol” aired its final episode on Fox, ABC announced that it will bring back the popular voice competition for the 2017-2018 season. Fox announced in May 2015 that the 15th season of “American Idol,” which debuted January 2016, would be its last. But on Tuesday, ABC announced that it would bring back the show in conjunction with FreemantleMedia...
Jimmy Kimmel responds to critics of his health care plea

Jimmy Kimmel responds to critics of his health care plea

Jimmy Kimmel delivered a tearful opening monologue last week on his late-night show about his son, who was born with a heart condition, and the state of health care in America. That monologue spurred an outpouring of support for the “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” host, but not everyone found him convincing. Kimmel spoke last week in support of the Affordable Care Act ahead of a vote in the U.S....
May the Fourth: What kind of dog would Chewbacca be?

May the Fourth: What kind of dog would Chewbacca be?

It’s Star Wars Day, in case you didn’t know (May the Fourth be with you—get it?) and a local startup has an answer to the question we know you’ve been asking yourself for years now: What kind of dog would Chewbacca be? Austin startup Embark, a dog DNA testing company, used its expertise to analyze the “Star Wars” character and interpret what dog breeds could...
10 things to know about Ryan Seacrest

10 things to know about Ryan Seacrest

Kelly Ripa announced Monday that Ryan Seacrest will become her co-host for “Live.”  The radio and TV star is from Atlanta. 1. In an interview with Atlanta Magazine in 2003, Seacrest said his idol, WSB-TV’s John Pruitt, inspired him to want to be on TV or radio someday. 2. He graduated from Dunwoody High School in 1992. 3. He studied journalism at University of Georgia...
Will Ferrell reprises role as George W. Bush for 'Not The White House Correspondents Dinner'

Will Ferrell reprises role as George W. Bush for 'Not The White House Correspondents Dinner'

Comedian Will Ferrell reprised his role as former President George W. Bush on Saturday night to thunderous applause at “Not the White House Correspondents’ Dinner,” hosted by Samantha Bee. The event was taped as journalists gathered at the Washington Hilton for the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Meanwhile, President Donald Trump addressed a crowd in Pennsylvania. "...
Disney offers sneak peek ahead of ‘Pandora – The World of Avatar’ park opening

Disney offers sneak peek ahead of ‘Pandora – The World of Avatar’ park opening

Disney was preparing to release information on the number of jobs that will be created and the impact on the economy its newest attraction, Pandora – The World of Avatar – will have on Central Florida when it opens on May 27. The attraction will feature a bioluminescent rainforest, dining, shopping and two new rides – Avatar Flight of Passage and the Na’vi River Journey. Situated...
Austin actress Amber Heard is reportedly dating Tesla CEO Elon Musk

Austin actress Amber Heard is reportedly dating Tesla CEO Elon Musk

Amber Heard and I were both born in Austin. This weekend, the “Magic Mike XXL” actress went ziplining in Australia with a space-bound automotive innovator worth $15 billion. I cleaned my bathroom and listened to podcasts. According to multiple reports, Heard and Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk are officially an item. The actress and mogul both posted photos to their respective Instagram...
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