ARTS IN LOS ANGELES
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May 2017

Celebrating the Arts since May 2012

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Television!

THE WIZARD OF LIES!

The Wizard of Lies (starring Robert De Niro) airs May 20th on HBO

THE WIZARD OF LIES!

  • By RICH ANDREW
  • Photo By Craig Blankenhorn/HBO

The mastermind behind the biggest cover-up of the financial sector, Bernie Madoff earns a new moniker in HBO’s latest film The Wizard of Lies, an exposé that seeks to uncover the man behind the monster. Much of the film’s wizardry lies with its wondrous cast as Robert De Niro does the impossible in his portrayal of a man deemed so irredeemable. De Niro’s artistry is a show of Madoff’s atonement, accosting us with the regrets of a man who merely wanted to know greatness — if just for a moment — but couldn’t admit his ultimate failure.

That kind of greatness is found in Michelle Pfeiffer as Ruth Madoff, and though she thoroughly disappears into the role, she’s not to be overlooked. Pfeiffer’s agony unveils Ruth’s naiveté, and she dares us to suffer alongside a wife hated for her husband’s sins, now broken in ways that can never be fixed. She’s even ostracized by her sons, played by Nathan Darrow (House of Cards) and Alessandro Nivola (American Hustle), both so convincing in their ignorance of their father’s fraud and the inescapable indignity of whether they knew.

HBO pulls off a compelling feat in how the film beautifully coerces sympathy for every member of the Madoff clan. Bernie Madoff may be The Wizard of Lies, but HBO’s film proves to be quite the revelation.

The Wizard of Lies” premieres May 20th.

Twin Peaks Returns!

Twin Peaks returns May 21st on Showtime

Twin Peaks Returns!

  • By Rebekah Rejniak
  • Photo Courtesy of Showtime

After 26 years of radio silence, co-creators David Lynch and Mark Frost are back with Season Three of the cult classic, Twin Peaks. Although the plot has been shrouded in secrecy, Frost has confirmed several things: the new season is a continuation of the series, it’s set in present day, and the lapse of 25 years will be addressed. David Lynch — famed for his use of the uncanny — will direct all 18 episodes. And yes, walking sex, David Duchovny will return as Denise Bryson, transgender DEA agent.

For those that need a refresher, lets revisit a few major plot points. Brace yourself for SPOILERS. The entire series opens with the death of Laura Palmer, which sets in motion an occult chain of events. The anti-hardboiled Agent Cooper arrives in Twin Peaks to investigate Laura’s death, among other things. With each episode we realize this small, sleepy Northwest town is full of freaks and hosts a supernatural realm. The series ends with Agent Cooper stuck in an alternate dimension while his doppelganger escapes into the real world.

Seasons one and two are available to stream on Showtime until May 31, while the 1992 prequel film Fire Walk With Me is available until May 1. The show will reunite the majority of the original cast, while including many new additions straight from the Lynch Universe including, Laura Dern, Eddie Vedder, Trent Reznor, Monica Bellucci, Jim Belushi, Michael Cera, Balthazar Getty, Ashley Judd, Tom Sizemore, and Naomi Watts.

The new season debuts on May 21st on Showtime.

13 Reasons Why!

13 Reasons Why is streaming now on Netflix

13 Reasons Why!

  • By Adam Tyler Hughes
  • Photo Courtesy of Netflix

As of late, Netflix has become known for its original content. From great shows like House of Cards, Sense8, and Jessica Jones, the streaming services has solidified itself with strong programming. But at the end of March, something new hit Netflix, and it rocked everything. That something was 13 Reasons Why.

13 Reasons Why is an original episodic series based off a book with the same title by Jay Asher. It chronicles the reasons why a high school student named Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford) committed suicide. Each reason is based on a person she interacted with at school, and each reason is outlined with a story recorded on cassette tapes. The series follows Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette, Don’t Breathe) as he listens to these tapes and uncovers secrets being hidden by fellow students.

The importance of this show cannot be understated. It seamlessly intertwines the backstory of Hannah’s suicide and the present story of those she’s blamed and those who are dealing with her death. For anyone who wants to understand how negative words and actions can impact the lives of teenagers, this show is one to see. Selena Gomez serves as executive producer, having originally been slated to play Hannah. The series also stars Alisha Boe (Teen Wolf), Christian Navarro (Vinyl), and Kate Walsh (Private Practice).

The first season of “13 Reasons Why” is now streaming on Netflix.

Dirty Dancing!

Dirty Dancing airs May 24th on ABC (pictured Colt Prattes and Abigail Breslin)

Dirty Dancing!

  • By Kenne Hoffman
  • Photo Courtesy of ABC

ABC dances it’s way aboard the television movie musical bandwagon with a remake of the 1987 hit film Dirty Dancing. ABC’s fresh perspective will delve deeper into the iconic characters and the social themes of race, women’s rights and socio-economic division of the early 1960’s. Not so different from today’s societal challenges. Based on real life experiences of writer Eleanor Bergstein’s family vacations in the Catskill Mountains. Frances “Baby” Housman (Jennifer Grey) falls for the ruggedly handsome resort dance instructor Johnny Castle (Patrick Swayze) against her father’s (Jerry Orbach) wishes. Dancing won the Oscar for Best Original Song for “(I’ve Had) The Time of My Life.”

ABC’s remake with Abigail Breslin (Scream Queens, Little Miss Sunshine) assuming the iconic role of “Baby” along with newcomer Colt Prattes as dance instructor Johnny Castle. Deborah Messing (Mysteries of Laura, Will & Grace), Sarah Hyland (Modern Family), Katey Sagal (Sons of Anarchy, Married with Children) and Nicole Scherzinger (The X Factor, Pussycat Dolls), among others, round out this all-star cast. Iconic songs like “Time of our Lives,” “Do You Love Me,” “Hungry Eyes,” and “She’s Like the Wind” that made Dirty Dancing a hit have been updated. The expanded storyline goes a (dance) step further showing what happens with Johnny and Frances after that fateful summer. Remember, nobody put this baby in a corner!

Dirty Dancing” airs May 24th on ABC.

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