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Tube Watch (Week of May 29th, 2014)

The Great Stories team checks in again with you to tell you what we have been watching in the world of entertainment this past week!

 

We start with Jim, our resident aficiando of classic movie fare.  This week, The Tall T (1950’s western kidnap thriller starring Randolph Scott and Richard Boone) was his throwback selection of the week.  He also spent some being a very good and responsible father by introducing his daughter to the world of Indiana Jones with viewings of Raiders of the Lost Ark and Temple of Doom!  Father-Daughter time doesn’t get much better than that I suspect!  On the more recent front, he was pretty unenthusiastic with the allegedly true story of soldiers trying to save precious art from the German in WWII, The Monuments Men which starred Clooney and Damon.

 

Marcel enjoyed Godzilla with a friend at the movie theaters.  He also recommends The Legend of Hercules which just recently hit DVD/BluRay.  Also on the agenda was a viewing of The Nut Job, another recently released animated film, with his mom!  Both gave this one a thumbs up.

 

Melissa, aside from The Nut Job, ended up at the local theater with Chris to see X-Men: Days of Future Past, which could be the best X-Men movie made so far!  They also both took in the recently released Pompeii, and while the story was a bit ho-hum, the special effects were excellent in this Paul Anderson film.  She also suffered through the first episode of Game of Thrones Season One with Chris, deciding that this was not her type of entertainment.

 

Chris, on the other hand, enjoyed Game of Thrones quite a bit, and is looking forward towards his banishment from the bedroom to watch the rest of season one, which fellow blogger Rob was so gracious to lend to him.  On a solo note, Chris also watched Paranormal Activity:  The Marked Ones which will hopefully bring about the end of that played out franchise.  And reaching a little further back into the archives, Too Big To Fail, which was the HBO-produced drama about the sub-prime mortgage crisis starring James Woods and William Hurt.  Not a bad flick about a topic that truly affected just about everyone out there.

 

Rob, amidst his reading material and parenting responsibilities, was still faithful to the current season of Game of Thrones but also managed to sneak out to theaters to see the X-Men movie…..yes, he is a die-hard mutant fan!

 

What were you all watching this week?

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Tube Watch (Week of May 22, 2014)

Another week gone by, and the Memorial Day weekend fast approaches us.  The Great Stories team will be at the Pop Culture Expo in Wilmington, MA on Saturday the 24th looking to give away prizes and find some charismatic talent for a new project, but that is putting the proverbial cart before the horse.  Let’s take a look at how the team filled in their precious free hours over the past seven days!

Chris and Marcel both took to the theaters last weekend to see Amazing Spider-Man 2, and came away feeling that it was a good time.  Not the perfect Spider-Man movie, but entertaining all the same.  Chris also added Godzilla to his movie-going experience on Sunday and was happy to have the memories of the Matthew Broderick version (1998) wiped from his memory.  On DVD, Chris also happened to catch two abduction thrillers.  The first, Beyond (starring Jon Voight) was completely underwhelming and should be passed over.  But the second, Gone (starring Amands Seyfried) was far better and worth a rainy night viewing.  Additionally, he watched the thriller Man on a Ledge (starring Jamie Bell and Ed Harris).  Definitely a worthy picture.  And finally, the true story drama Fruitvale Station, about a young man who tragically loses his life in Oakland after a controversial stop and arrest, which ended up being an effective film documenting the victim’s final day.

Marcel and Melissa both continued to watch the first season of Once Upon a Time, and both are majorly hooked on the story so far.

Rob, per usual, was faithful to his beloved Game of Thrones series this week, but had no other time to watch anything beyond some collegiate lacrosse.  Heck, he had a pile of comics to go through on his way to picking this week’s comic selection, so we can give him a pass, right?  🙂

Lastly, but never leastly (sic), Jim reveled in some Clint Eastwood action by watching The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly.  Not to be outdone with this classic, he also added the Cary Grant/Tony Curtis film, Operation Petticoat to his viewing schedule.  And on the more recent front, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (starring Ben Stiller) which he found to be a well done remake with a great soundtrack.

 

What did you watch this past week?

 

 

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Tube Watch (Week of May 15, 2014)

Happy Thursday everyone!

Another week has past us by and the Great Stories team filled in their precious free moments with some good material.  Let’s review.

 

Jim was busy with Peter Jackson’s two latest films, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, which he believed to be enjoyable enough but lacking in the “oomph” of the original Lord of the Rings Trilogy that has captivated millions.  A relatively light week for our friend and appreciator of classic Hollywood fare.

 

Rob took in A Game of Thrones, as per usual, but added The Blindside starring Sandra Bullock to his viewing list, which he thought was pretty good.  Also on tap for him was the season premiere of a new HBO series called Silicone Valley.  But he is most looking forward to HBO’s upcoming series The Leftovers, from the mind of Lost writer Damon Lindelof.

 

Chris and Marcel both watched the season finale to Agents of SHIELD, which a series that really has finally taken flight.  They both hope season two can continue the quality level and positive momentum that was front and center for the last few episodes of the season.  They also both watched 47 Ronin, starring master thespian Keanu Reaves <snicker>.  A pretty good samurai movie for sure.  And on top of that, they both took in a nice WWII drama called Emperor, starring Tommy Lee Jones as General Douglas MacArthur and Matthew Fox as the man assigned to investigate the Emperor of Japan’s role in the bombing of Pearl Harbor, as well as the questionable surrender that came after two atomic bombs were dropped on Japanese cities.  Definitely worth your one and three quarter hours of time.

 

And finally, Melissa attempted to watch the Oscar-nominated All is Lost, starring Robert Redford, but was so bored to tears that she fell aspleep (in the middle of the day!).  I think a movie with one actor and no real dialogue to play off of other personalities can be a bit of an acquired taste.  Who knows?  She and Chris also both watched the underwhelming Reasonable Doubt, starring Sam Jackson and Dominick Purcell, about a prosecutor whose job putting away a murder suspect may have been compromised by a poor choice.

 

What were you watching this week?

 

Have a great upcoming weekend everyone!

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Tube Watch (May 8, 2014)

Hope everyone is having an awesome week.  We are back to share what we have been watching over the past week. 🙂

Starting with Melissa, she was happy to discover a Tinkerbell-related feature of the non-animated variety in the two part 2011 TV movie, Neverland, starring the recently past Bob Hoskins (RIP) and Kiera Knightley, but she was quite underwhelmed and it became “Nevermind” on watching part two.  She also continued her journey through Lost by beginning season five.  And she also watched the first few episodes of a newer TV show, ABC’s Once Upon a Time, which quickly won her over!

Chris finally caught up with the rest of the Great Stories team by watching Catching Fire, though he is still not that sold on the merits of the series.  Also on the viewing schedule was the superb Dean Koontz adaptation of Odd Thomas with Anton Yelchin and Addison Timlin (and directed by Stephen Sommers).  Of the few Koontz adaptations out there, this one is easily the best.  That was about it, as NHL hockey playoffs took precedence!

Next up was Marcel, who continued his Agents of SHIELD viewing with Chris, as well as joining Melissa in watching Once Upon a Time.  He has also been watching one of his favorites, The Goldbergs, which appears directly after Agents of SHIELD.

Jim had a relatively light week with only two movies.  His viewing of the Oscar-nominated Philomena was well worth his time.  And it would not be a complete week without one oldie but goodie, as he took in the Cary Grant comedy,  The Awful Truth.

Here’s to heading into our fast-approaching weekend!

The Great Stories Team

 

 

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Tube Watch (Week of May 1 2014)

Hey Everyone….the team is back to fill you in on what we have been watching after taking a one week break to catch some sunshine in beautiful San Diego California.  So, what has been happening the last couple of weeks?

Chris was busy watching the NHL playoffs commence by taking in both Bruins and Kings games but did make time to watch a very entertaining crime thriller/action movie called Gangster Squad with Josh Brolin, Sean Penn, and Ryan Gosling.  And that was about it for his solo viewing fare as most of his free time was spent quietly murdering his phone in the hotel pool while covering the tracks of his crime.  😉

Melissa turned in some marathon viewing of Lost episodes, and managed to get through half of Season Three and all of Season Four in the past two weeks.  Impressive!  She is even doing a fine job piecing together the storyline and guessing at the upcoming plot developments (without cheating by internet).

Marcel has been keeping close tabs on Agents of SHIELD as it runs quickly towards the season finale, and loves the events that are unfolding.  Yes, this series has definitely hit a good groove!  He also watched a couple of older comedies, Click with Adam Sandler and Mean Girls 2, which he enjoyed.  On the not so good front was the A&E remake of Bonnie & Clyde with Emile Hirsch and Holiday Grainger.  He says quite simply, “it was terrible”.  As plain spoken as a twelve year old can be!

Rob has had no time for anything but repeated watches of Game of Thrones.  He might be in heaven if that show played on a 24 hour loop.  😉

And finally, Jim continued his Alfred Hitchcock marathon from our last Tube Watch entry by adding The Birds to his list.  He also took in the fantastic Breakdown starring the GREAT Kurt Russell.  Love Jones, a 1997 romantic comedy starring Larenz Tate and Nia Long, met his approval (I assume his wife put him up to this one!).  And he took time to watch A Boy Named Charlie Brown with his wonderful daughter Amy.  Ah yes, to share the joys of your own childhood with another generation is really one of the best things about parenting, isn’t it?

That is all from the team this week.  Check in again soon!

 

-The Great Stories Team

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Tube Watch (Week of April 17, 2014)

Reviewing what the Great Stories team has been watching over the past week, we start with Jim.  Our resident fan of the old classics took a marathon run through some classic Hitchcock films such as Rebecca, Saboteur, Lifeboat, and Spellbound.  He highly recommends all of these movies.  In addition, he also watched 2001’s Bandits, starring Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton, and Cate Blanchett.  Another winner in his book!

 

Marcel was not happy with our selection of The Sandlot for his Friday movie night this past week, and instead watched The Anchorman 2 with his brother Thomas.  We know Jim was very sour on this film, but to the less sophisticated minds it was a big hit.  He also watched Agents of SHIELD with Chris, as the fall out from Captain America 2 continues to spill into the TV series to great effect!

 

In addition to watching Agents of SHIELD, Chris took time to see the much lauded Clooney/Bullock movie, Gravity.  The special effects awards were well deserved even if the story was a bit one dimensional, but that was not really the point, right?  Clocking in at just about 90 minutes, it is worth the view (especially for those of you with a nice big screen in your living room)!

 

Melissa managed to watch nothing Tinkerbell or faerie-related this week, but did catch Frozen for the second time.  Yeah, that movie was Disney’s best animated flick in ages.  She also finally completed season three of Lost and even started on the fourth season.

 

Rob, on the other hand, was mired in more personal busyness (and comic reading of course!).  But he did manage to keep up with the epic Game of Thrones series on HBO.  Maybe next week will allow him a little more diversity to his viewing pallet?

 

What were you all watching this week?  Let us know here!

 

The Great Stories Team

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Tube Watch (Week of April 10 2014)

So, what were we watching this past week?

 

Chris and Marcel ventured out to the theaters this past Tuesday night to catch Captain America:  The Winter Soldier, which was all sorts of epic!  Do not miss this one!  They both followed it up by catching Agents of SHIELD the following night to see the crazy fall-out from the events that transpired in Cap’s latest movie.  This series has officially arrived after a mediocre start.  The tie-in to the Marvel Universe and the events both surprised us and left us in great anticipation of next week’s show.  In keeping with the Marvel theme, they both watched Avengers Confidential: Black Widow and Punisher, which was a decent animated feature film.

 

Chris also found time to watch the PG-13 horror Insidious 2, which was OK, and not up to par with the first movie.  Additionally, he decided to watch the direct to DVD horror The Fields starring Tara Reid.  Why?  I have no idea.  But he would probably choose waterboarding as an alternate activity next time around.

 

Jim was getting his Oscar on with viewings of Best Picture 12 Years a Slave, which he found 100% worthy of its award.  Best Picture nominee Nebraska was also on his viewing list, which he found to be quite dull and decidedly not worthy of its place on the consideration list (though he did mention that June Squibb put in a funny performance).  He didn’t make it through twenty minutes of Anchorman 2 before gonging it.  But his palate was redeemed by American Hustle, which he says is well worth our time.  That’s a lot of big time movies in one week, man!

 

Rob was a little off his viewing schedule thanks to those parental duties (including his part time lacrosse coaching gig) but did find the opportunity to see the season premiere of Friends with Better Lives, which he said was only OK.  The Game of Thrones fan that he is brought him a second viewing of the season opener.  And Big Bang Theory was also on his couch potato to do list.

 

Melissa, as previously discussed last week, watched Pirate Fairy AGAIN!  Yes, she is a Tinkerbell fanatic.  Somebody get her some help….or some fairy dust…PRONTO!  And she did not catch one episode of Lost Season Three, which means she is still about a decade behind the rest of the world.  LOL.

 

Well, that is it for Tube Watch this week.  Check in with us again next Thursday for another installment of “Which Tinkerbell movie will Melissa Watch this Week?”  😉

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Tube Watch (Week of April 3rd)

We are back with another round of Tube Watch.  So what were the Great Stories family and friends watching this week?  Let’s see…..

 

Marcel watched Khumba, an animated tale of a Zebra who is kicked out of his herd and strikes out on his own to find redemption and acceptance.  From the sounds of laughter emanating from the living room, I’d say the movie was a hit!  He also got back into Agents of SHIELD with Chris for a great episode leading into this week’s Captain America movie premiere (more on that in our trailer blog today).

 

Rob was all-in on TV series as he caught the season finale’s of How I Met Your Mother (he was not happy with the ending) and The Walking Dead (stupid six month cliffhanger endings!).  On top of that, he watched Big Bang Theory and the animated Spectacular Spider-Man Season One (highly recommended).  He also took the time to view the second installment of The Hunger Games with Catching Fire, which he thought was only OK.

 

Jim made Catching Fire a very popular choice amongst the Great Stories team this week.  Marcel had seen it last week, so that only leaves Melissa and Chris as the lone holdouts.  He claims (much like Marcel) that the second movie is a big improvement on the first.  Also included in his viewing this week was Enchanted (a movie Melissa has probably seen about 30 times and is her favorite film of all time).  I am not sure he enjoyed it as much as she did, but it was a definite thumbs up with the adorable Amy Adams in the lead role.  Lastly, he caught About Time, a time traveling romantic comedy starring Rachel McAdams, which he thought was funny and inventive.  Richard Curtis directed this one, who is also responsible for the film Love Actually, which Jim recommends to everyone.

 

Chris kept up the trend of turning to Netflix for tv shows he never got around to.  It was a little more Bates Motel as well as the first three episodes of JJ Abrams’ Revolution, about an event that wipes out the power grid in America.  So far so good on that show!  He also watched the old classic Marilyn Monroe/Tony Curtis/Jack Lemmon comedy Some Like It Hot, at Jim’s suggestion.  But you can read his thoughts on that one in The Honor Roll blog that came out earlier this week.

 

Melissa continued her quest to get through Season Three of Lost…..she really is upset with that character Julia (yes, she refuses to call her Juliette, since that is her niece’s name).  And she half paid attention to the newest movie arrival in the household while she cleaned the bedroom.  Yes, another Tinkerbell adventure, The Pirate Fairy in now in her possession.  Anticipate a repeat and more thorough viewing by next week’s blog.

 

We’ll be back next week to check in with another Tube Watch.  Happy viewing to you all!

 

-The Great Stories Team

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Tube Watch (Week of March 27th)

We are back with another round of Tube Watch.  So what were the Great Stories family and friends watching this week?  Let’s see…..

 

Our friend Jim watched some classic pscho on a plane-type action with Turbulence, which he quite enjoyed.  Ray Liotta and Lauren Holly star in that one.  He also screened Unknown, starring Liam Neeson.  A truly awesome suspense flick!  And knowing how much Jim appreciates older films, you had to know that there was going to be something made before yours truly had a license to drive….The Purple Rose of Cairo with Mia Farrow and Jeff Daniels (under the direction of that creepy Woody Allen).

 

Rob, on the other hand, did not spend so much time watching movies, but did take some time to catch up on The Walking Dead, as well as attending a Game of Thrones Season Four Episode One viewing party hosted by HBO in Boston.

 

Marcel took in a viewing of Catching Fire, the second Hunger Games movie, and claims that it is far and away a better movie than the first!

 

Chris risked life and limb by starting a new (to him) series from A&E called Bates Motel starring Vera Farmiga as Norma Bates and Freddie Highmore as the young version of the character made famous in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho.  Only one episode in, but it has him hooked for more, much to Melissa’s Chagrin.  He also watched a very dull 1996 frontier adventure movie called The North Star, starring Christopher Lambert, James Caan, and Catherine McCormack, about a Native American who attempts to lay claim to a goldmine owned by an immoral land baron in Nome, Alaska in the gold rush of the 1800’s.

 

Melissa and Chris both took a 2012 movie called Lawless (starring Tom Hardy, Shia LaBeouf, and Guy Pearce), about backwoods moonshine runners and dirty cops during prohibition.  Not a bad flick.  She also caught up on more Lost Season Three episodes….who doesn’t love that show, right?

 

What are you watching this week?

 

We’ll check in again next week, but would love to hear some recommendations from you!

 

-The Great Stories Team

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Tube Watch (Week of March 20th)

Hi Everyone,

Just checking in to let you know what the Great Stories family have been watching at home in our living rooms and snuggled in bed.

 

Chris watched You’re Next, a home invasion horror movie, much to his wife’s chagrin.  Yes, banished to the office to watch on the PC since this movie was not sanctioned as acceptable.  LOL.  He recommends it if you are looking for a good intense movie experience.  He did happen to watch the comedy Last Vegas (with Michael Douglas, Morgan Freeman, Robert DeNiro, and Kevin Kline), to make up for his “poor taste”, with his wife.

 

Marcel watched Hours, starring the late Paul Walker, but claims the movie was a bit disappointing.  For a 12 year old, he has some pretty sophisticated taste in movies.  He does recommend Freebirds, the time traveling turkey movie with Owen Wilson and Woody Harrelson providing voices, as well as Justice League: War (the animated DC movie).

 

Melissa watched the Disney animated classic Peter Pan.  Heck, anything with Tinkerbell is going to find a prominent place on her viewing list. She also continues to catch up with the rest of the world viewing Lost Season Three episodes (only the best tv show in the last couple of decades!).

 

Our friend and sometimes columnist Rob watched all thirteen episodes of the just released Clone Wars:  The Lost Missions as well as Perks of Being a Wallflower (drama/romance), which stars Emma Watson, Ezra Miller, and Logan Lerman.  He recommends both very highly, but what does a man who thinks Moon Knight is the greatest character in the Marvel Universe know?  😉

 

And finally, our friend Jim spent his week watching lots of classics including North By Northwest (Hitchcock), My Fair Lady (Audrey Hepburn), andThe Owl and the Pussycat (with Barbara Streisand).  He especially recommends North By Northwest, as one of Hitchcock’s best films!  On the more recent front, he viewed Inside Lleweyn Davis, a movie about the folk music scene in 1970’s era Greenwich Village, which he also recommends highly even though the lead character is a “complete jerk”.  LOL.  Plainly spoken Jim!

 

 

What are you watching this week?

 

We’ll check back in again in a week to let you know the next movie Chris picks that gets him ex-communicated from the bedroom once again!

 

-The Great Stories Team