WARNING!! Each Show is for MATURE Audiences only
By far my favorite of the ones I will list; the story is deep and rich. With plenty of drama, twist, sex, and action to ply your entertainment appetite episode after episode. It is one of the first shows I’ve seen to follow movie cinematic elements for a tv series. Now all other shows are following suit, making riskier more costly production decisions. Now new Tv shows are turning into mini movies and I love it. Enough about it’s influences, Spartacus has a compelling storyline and never goes the way you expect it to. How the writers keep the material from getting stale and stagnate I will never know. There are so many plots on plots on plots….yet everything is kept together with no glaring loose ends. Shock value is at an all time high in this show. From visual to story, full frontal penis to back biting betrayal, it is a smorgasbord surprises. Liam Mcintyre steps into the role of Spartacus after the great Andy Whitfield passed. Andy’s shoes are extremely big to fill, but I give Liam credit for not trying to live up to the energy Andy brought, because it would be impossible (the man was amazing see Spartacus first season and you’ll understand). Liam brings more compassion to the role, although I don’t see the strength of a leader in him yet…but I’m hopeful. The language in the film may be confusing to some, so for those thinking of giving the show a try, know that it has a language of it’s own. It may be startling at first (and it’s not authentic Roman) but you get use to it and even may fall in love with it. Spartacus airs on STARZ Fridays, I believe Netflix streaming services shows older episodes from time to time. Check out this video about the show and look for episode views coming from me soon.
2. The Walking Dead
This show…wow. What could have been a lame “Oh my God look at me run for my life every episode show I’m so scared and it never stops” turned into a sleeping giant for me. It takes the Spielberg approach which turns the human being into the monsters rather than the actual monster’s themselves being the menace. The Zombies in this series serve a a back drop or an element to push the plot forward. The real focus is how the ensemble cast deal with their own issues. I recommend starting with Season 1 if at all possible because their is an apparent character arch between both seasons along with transformations, and revelations that occur. It is so human and primal and asks the constant question what if and what would you do. You feel protective of each character as they go through each struggle. You come to find out that the life struggles we go through now and those during a zombie apocalyptic simulation are not that dissimilar. This is not a monster movie by far, but be advised…you will be afraid at times. It amazes me that a series can scare you consistently and you not get jaded by it (though it doesn’t attempt to every episode). Give this one a try even if you don’t like horror dramas, I doubt you will be disappointed.
3. Game of Thrones
Where do I begin with this one. The writing is solid but I guess you can expect that since the book series has done so well (I haven’t read them, but I’m currently reading the first book which the series is inspired by). Again, if you like great writing and unpredictable moments and stories than look no further. The whole world created here is so vivid an real that I’m almost willing to except to as part of World History. There has been so much care and consideration that has been put into everything. They even had a linguist design the Dothraki language (a fictional group of nomads). The costuming says so much about each character and the scenery is caught in beautiful cinematic detail. The acting is top notch and art direction one to be taking into account in award season. The title is self-explanatory in regards to the show. It is about the games people play to gain, regain, and maintain power; a recipe for intense drama, misdirection, and unbelievable characters being killed off. The series like Spartacus consistently makes bold choices. The pacing is a bit slow at times but I feel it is necessary for you to digest everything that has been taking place. Sophisticated writing and style makes this a must watch.
4. House of Lies
House of Lies…still trying to figure this one out. Among it’s dirty jokes and numerous sexual innuendos and array of random sexy scenes, this dirty minded show has a little charm to it. One could say the the dirty world reflects its protagonist Marty Con who will do anything to win in a consulting deal. This is the only comedy on my list and it does have plenty to offer within it. The main story line is subtly, revealing itself piece by piece each episode. The consulting negotiations serve as a back drop or a red herring if you will; It is what the story contains but not necessarily what it is about. This is the wildest show on the list (in my opinion surprisingly) and deserves atleast a 2 episode look. You may find yourself coming back for more. The writing is witty and smart but also has a low brow presence. Watch as the talent Marty Con struggles to swindle his clients, be a good father, struggle with his past, and attempt to keep it all together. I may include a more in depth review at a later date. Catch House of Lies on Showtime Sundays.
5. The River
The River is an extremely new series. It is not as raw and Raunchy as the other shows listed, as a matter of fact they try to be as PG-13 as possible (bleeping out the cuss words). This show is not the best on my list but I feel hopeful about it right now. The writing is cheesy and it is not as scary as it lets on but there is still something there. I feel that this show may pick up around the fourth episode…if not, then it will fall off my rather. It is shot well and has a very unique styling (courtesy the makers of paranormal activity whom work on the show). I believe their may be good things on the horizon for this show. It could however be a hit or miss. Either it will be great or cancelled, I doubt there is much grey area for this show. Join me in giving it a chance. It airs on ABC Mondays
These are just a few shows to help spice up your TV entertainment experience. Add a dash of these to your weekly viewing experience and you may regain a new found pleasure in watching TV or rekindle the fire. Enjoy and remember…for MATURE AUDIENCES ONLY
Shame directed by Steve McQueen is definitely a film for the independent film goer. If you like pensive and provocative movies with substance, you will enjoy this one. For those who are confused with the trailer or unfamiliar with the title at all, Shame in a nutshell is primarily about a man’s struggle with addiction. There are elements of addiction strung about through the story within other characters but the main character Brandon Sullivan (played by Michael Fassbender) is the main focus. We follow Brandon and observe how his addiction affects his daily living, how he views the world around him, and how his addiction affects others. Director Steve McQueen took a minimalist approach to the way the film was shot and edited. I thought this was brilliant given the fact that the film was very detail driven. McQueen seems to be following the motto “show don’t tell” and strategically uses music, sound/silence, textures, objects, and obstacles to add to the depth of the overall film and the psychology of the main character. I really appreciated the natural feel of the film. It is like the director set up the shots and got out off the way. What I mean by this is that there are no fancy cuts, no over dramatic music that exceeds the mood of the scene in which it is placed, and no overly contrived background activity. The clean shooting method juxtaposes the dirty subject matter and intensely focused acting to create a story that seems like a slice of life rather than an act put on for the viewer. One example of this is an elevator scene where we ride the elevator from the bottom floor all the way to the main characters’ floor. Furthermore, there are many intimate shots and moments that drive the film and makes the audience feel like a fly on the wall. Everything was shot purposefully and just simply works. Michael Fassbender is brilliant in this role. He seems to be constantly brimming with desire, so much so that you can see it through his intense eyes. In the films he says a lot without saying many words at all. His inner monologue is strong and I get the sense that he is constantly hiding his secret addiction. Carey Mulligan plays his sister in the film, and did exceptionally well. She is almost equally as pensive and troubled and their relationship to each other is very clear. If you are going to see this film, and I highly recommend you do, I suggest you go with independent movie enthusiast or true movie lovers. The pacing can be a bit too slow for those use to mainstream films that are driven by a rudimentary formula (ie. boy meets girl, they break up and boy does something sweet to get her back) rather than intense stories that deal with peoples darkest struggles and how they work through them…or lack there of. I say this because I took 3 friends, one doesn’t watch independent films; her favorites are goofy films. She felt as though the film did not have a plot but the plot is evident to those familiar with independent films focus. I also advice that you pay close attention to detail because there are little easter eggs that the director places in view (such as a character gesturing and their ring is in the shot or many erect figures and so on…). So go out and enjoy the film and if you are not going alone keep in mind that it is rated NC-17; which I feel was done very purposefully and tastefully for the story. Enjoy 🙂