MOBILE USERS: m.isthmus.com
Connect with Isthmus:         Newsletters 

Thursday, December 18, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 26.0° F  Light Snow
The Daily

TELEVISION

We all scream over Stephen King's Bag of Bones

The miniseries Stephen King's Bag of Bones wastes no time scaring you to death. With horror movies, I can usually keep my wits about me at least through the credit sequence, but not this time, thanks to merciless music, editing and imagery. >More
 Moms say I Hate My Teenage Daughter; we hate them too

It's hard to believe that Fox, the same network that premiered New Girl this fall, now gives us I Hate My Teenage Daughter. Where New Girl is a sophisticated take on the sitcom genre, I Hate My Teenage Daughter is painfully old-fashioned, with cornball punchlines that drive the laugh track mad. >More
 Kim Kardashian karries on

I got caught up in the excitement of Kim Kardashian's whirlwind romance with basketball player Kris Humphries, which played out on Keeping Up With the Kardashians. True, Kim and Kris had known each other only for a few months, but come on -- his name started with a K, the same as all the Kardashian sisters. >More
 Woody Allen calls himself a failure in a revealing documentary

More than a decade after the disappointing Wild Man Blues, American Masters gives Woody Allen the documentary he deserves. Allen has long been a remote figure, loath to grant interviews or make personal appearances. The two-part "Woody Allen: A Documentary" allows us to get as close to the writer/actor/director/standup comedian/clarinetist as we ever have and probably ever will. >More
 Chuck expertly mixes spy action and comedy in its final season

Despite its awesomeness, the comic spy series Chuck has been under threat of cancellation ever since it premiered in 2007, and NBC has finally decided to pull the plug after the current season. But until then, we can enjoy the adventures of Chuck Bartowski (Zachary Levi), the lowly retail clerk who became a superspy when an "Intersect" downloaded amazing skills into his brain. >More
 Hell on Wheels is a ripping frontier yarn

Hell on Wheels is the rare contemporary Western that actually registers as credible. The subject is the construction of the transcontinental railroad after the Civil War. That may sound prosaic, but the production has the epic quality of genre classics like The Searchers and High Noon, digging into the blood-red guts of our frontier history. >More
 Wild boars get the upper hand in American Hoggers

Truth be told, the title American Hoggers didn't fill me with anticipation for this new reality series. But it turns out to be a fascinating look at boar hunters in Texas, where the feral beasts are terrorizing landowners. Veteran hog expert Jerry Campbell and his kids come to the rescue with horses, lassos and hounds equipped with GPS tracking systems -- and despite all the weaponry, it's still a fair fight. >More
 Pearl Jam is immortalized in a Cameron Crowe documentary

I prefer Nirvana to Pearl Jam, but now Pearl Jam have something their Seattle rivals don't: a career-capping documentary by a brilliant filmmaker. American Masters' "Pearl Jam Twenty" was directed by Cameron Crowe, known for Jerry Maguire and Say Anything, as well as his side career as a Rolling Stone music journalist. Crowe does justice to 1990s grunge with ferocity and wit, putting as much creative energy into his art as Pearl Jam do into theirs. >More
 Man Up gets modern dudes just right

I usually wince when a network sitcom panders to the 18-to-49 male demographic (see this year's Last Man Standing, last year's Traffic Lights). But the new Man Up hits this demographic where it hurts. It's a brilliant satire of male pretension and male pride, so painfully on target that it might drive away the very viewers it seeks to attract. >More
 Laura Dern finds intermittent serenity in Enlightened

Laura Dern joins the list of brilliant actresses (Edie Falco, Laura Linney, Toni Collette) who have made cable TV an exciting place to be. Dern created and produced Enlightened, a new drama about -- sorry, there's no other way to put this -- life. She stars as Amy, a corporate executive who spectacularly loses it in the office after her affair with a married coworker goes bad. >More
moviesmusiceats
Select a Movie
Select a Theater

Promotions Contact us Privacy Policy Jobs Newsletters RSS
Collapse Photo Bar