Jolene — Clichés abound in this episodic adaptation of an acclaimed short story by Ragtime author E.L. Doctorow that documents a tumultuous decade in the life of a teenage girl. Jolene (talented newcomer Jessica Chastain) journeys from abusive foster homes, bad marriages, even a correctional institution where she attracts the attention of a lesbian guard (Frances Fisher), and, of course, a stint as a pole dancer. Broad performances by a notable supporting cast, including Dermot Mulroney, Michael Vartan, Theresa Russell, and Chazz Palminteri, only add to the film's somewhat frantic pace.
Saw 3D — In a week short on new movie releases (Halloween is pretty well restricted to high-gloss horror flicks), the Saw franchise purports to be wrapping itself up with Saw 3D: The Final Chapter. Of course, with horror movies it’s never a final chapter until the franchise stops making money — and even then sometimes these films just make the direct-to-home video move. But in the latest Saw, producers have at least made an effort to beef up the plot a bit by incorporating the first film’s star — Cary Elwes — into the last installment.
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest — Around the same time Stieg Larsson’s trilogy of thrillers was becoming a staple in American bookstores, a film adaptation of the final installment in the series was hitting theaters in Sweden. Now the films are being remade stateside, so before fans learn how director David Fincher and actors Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara fare with the American adaptation of the first book, find out how the trilogy ends with the well-received The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest.
"Another Drunk Chick" by Julie Brown — In a track from her new album,
Smell the Glamour, veteran parody artist Brown takes clever aim at the excessive party girl image of bi
pop tart Ke$ha to the tune of her undeniably
catchy "Tik Tok."
"Poison" by Nicole Scherzinger — The Pussycat Dolls may have made her famous, but from the second Nicole Scherzinger took to the stage as bisexual performance artist Maureen in this summer’s Hollywood Bowl production of Rent, it was clear the singer-dancer is destined for solo success. The first single off her long-delayed debut album (tentatively titled Her Name Is Nicole) is a rock-infused dance track by Gaga producer Red One. On “Poison,” Scherzinger’s powerful Broadway belt soars over the catchy beat, and it’s clear from watching the video the Dancing With the Stars singer was more than a bit inspired by Maureen’s black catsuit. The album is due out early next year, but sink your teeth into this in the meantime.
Watch the videos below.
The Facts of Life: The Complete Fifth Season — Materialistic Blair and dykon Jo experience a bumpy transition to freshman year in college until Mrs. Garrett opens Edna's Edibles, her gourmet food shop, paving the way for all her girls (Tootie and Natalie round out the foursome) to remain together. Future sitcom stars Jami Gertz, Helen Hunt, and Jean Smart make early TV appearances during the fifth season of the long-running series.
Back to the Future: The Complete Trilogy — Fans of the Back to the Future franchise will likely jump at the chance to see hour-long, behind-the-scenes documentaries accompanying all three films — and seeing Michael J. Fox in such good spirits remembering some of the best moments of his career is a thrill. The first and third installments stand up better over time than the second (mostly because of its completely inaccurate look at the future, which now is just five years away), but all three movies are imaginative, involved, and great family fun.
Sex and the City 2 — Yeah, we know, the film was roundly trounced by critics who justifiably took issue with its unwarranted length, the shallowness of the ladies' antics, and how annoyingly shrill Carrie has become since marrying Big. Yet on the positive side, the extravagant vacation the women take to the Middle East provides a shameless, scenic wallow, and it's difficult to resist a wedding (Stanford and Anthony's) this opulent and so gay that no less than Liza Minnelli herself manifests to officiate the ceremony and perform a zany cover of "All the Single Ladies."
Watch an exclusive-to-Blu-ray bonus feature on the filming of the wedding sequence below.