National Geographic’s new limited series – Valley of the Boom – goes behind the scenes of three Silicon Valley stories you probably don’t know – how Netscape didn’t become the browser of the people; how theglobe.com set a record for the highest first-day price gain for a new stock offering in 1998, and how con man Michael Fenne founded Pixelon, a multimillion-dollar streaming video tech company – as a total con.
Valley of the Boom premieres on Sunday, January 13, 2019 (9/8C). Check out the teaser below.
ABC has released the pilot for its new drama series The Crossing online – it can be screened at abc.com and the ABC app, Hulu and electronic sell-through platforms, as well as on demand across MVPD and digital MVPD providers until March 30th.
When 47 refugees wash up on the shore of Port Canaan, the local sheriff discovers that they are fleeing a war… from 180 years in the future and the country they’re fleeing from is America!
The Crossing premieres on ABC on Monday, April 2nd (10/9C).
Teresa, Sean and Liz review the newest in this kid’s movie franchise. Is it better than Brave? Funnier than Ice Age? How does it compare to Madagascar 3? See what they have to say.
Starring Teresa Lo (@TeresaLo_Tweets), Sean Wright and Liz Manashil (@LizManashil).
Directed by Amy Taylor (@WalknCandyApple).
Edited by Brian Jahns.
Produced by David Freedman, Aaron Fink(@AaronEvanFink), Pedro Raposo and Cooper Griggs.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days stars Zachary Gordon, Robert Capron, Devon Bostick and Steve Zahn. It is directed by David Bowers, written by Gabe Sachs and produced by Nina Jacobson and Brad Simpson. Genre: Family Comedy.
Sunshine Cleaning, which opened wide this weekend, is a quirky, entertaining dramedy that mines the same kind of vibe that propelled Little Miss Sunshine to hit status. It’s about pursuing a dream even though it would have appeared that it was too late. It features a very familiar performance from Alan Arkin as Joe, the eccentric father to sisters Rose [Amy Adams] and Norah [Emily Blunt], and grandfather to Rose’s equally eccentric young son, Oscar [Jason Spevak].
Rose works for a home cleaning company [a kind of maids-on-wheels gig], but was once the captain of the cheerleading squad and girlfriend of the quarterback. She’s still the girlfriend of the quarterback, Mac [Steve Zahn], a married police detective], but that’s the only thing her life has in common with her younger self. This is not where she thought she’d be – something that being invited to a baby shower for a former fellow cheerleader drives home.
Norah was probably the class clown until she dropped out and began a series of wage-slave jobs. Where Norah is responsible and maybe more than a bit worn down, Norah still acts like she’s in high school. We meet her as she gets fired from yet another job.
When Mac suggests that Rose get involved the lucrative crime scene cleanup game, she takes the idea and runs with it – dragging Norah along with her. Working together has opposite effects on the sisters: Rose really gets into it, learning everything she can about the job – and excelling at it [plus, she believes it makes things better in some small way]; Norah, who really needs a handler at all times, is easily distracted and not really interested – a combination that brings about some really bad results. Since Rose needs the money to get Oscar into a private school, where he can get the kind of attention an eccentric kid like him needs, this drives a huge wedge between her and Norah. Meanwhile, Joe is trying various get-rich-quick schemes with little to no success.
Sunshine Cleaning is not the next Little Miss Sunshine, but that’s okay. It is a witty dramedy that gives us interesting characters who react to their circumstances in very real ways. The script, by Megan Holley, is rich enough in terms of both characters and situation that it feels real and we can easily relate to them. Director Christine Jeffs draws a solid performance from her cast, but I doubt that Amy Adams and Emily Blunt are even capable of turning a bad performance. Where Jeffs’ skill shows, is in her work with young Jason Spevak. Oscar could have been just another precocious kid, but he’s not – in a world of precocious kid actors, Spevak is intriguingly fresh. He cloaks his character’s intelligence within his eccentricities in a way that really does make Oscar unique.
If Sunshine Cleaning doesn’t quite hit all the heights to which it aspires, it still has enough wit and intelligence and warmth to balance its darker moments [and there are a number of them, right from the fade in]. It is a solid, entertaining film.