All posts tagged: William Shatner

'Ant-Man' stars ants, and Paul Rudd.

Farkakte Film Flashback: Buggy ‘Ant-Man’ Edition

I saw “Ant-Man” over the weekend, and given the fact that advance buzz (so to speak) was iffy, I was pleasantly surprised: It was the funniest Marvel movie yet, and it fully embraces its ludicrous premise (something about being able to make people shrink by “changing the distance between atoms,” a concept that only sounds even mildly reasonable because it’s uttered by Michael Douglas). But one of my favorite parts of the movie is its cast of supporting characters — no, not Michael Peña, although he is awesome. I’m talking about the ants, whom Ant-Man controls by harnessing the something in their whatsis … actually I don’t think they ever really explain how it works, but who cares? Unlike most movie bugs they’re a huge help to our hero, and one of them — SPOILER ALERT! — even gets a name (Antony) and a heroic demise. It also made me think of certain other, previous bug movies, some of which are definitely lesser than “Ant-Man,” but which all hold a space in the pantheon of creepy …

WilliamShatner.com

The Popdose Interview: William Shatner

William Shatner is one of the greatest Canadian exports of all time, a full-fledged North American treasure. He is also a man who is unafraid to stay on topic, so if you’d like to get him to open up, it’s best to stick to things predominantly to matters related to current projects. Popdose was offered the opportunity to spend 10 minutes on the phone with the individual some call the Shatman, and we snapped it up giddily, but don’t dive in with expectations of an in-depth interview about his life and times. In truth, the most in-depth we got in our conversation came when discussing how much we both enjoy the adrenaline rush of getting a good story during an interview. Still, we did talk about his latest documentary project, The Captains Close Up (a.k.a the reason we were chatting in the first place), what other docs he’s got in the pipeline, what musician he’s collaborating with on his next album, and if there’s a chance we might actually get to see him acting again …

He feels...young

The Great Summer Movies: KHAAAAAAAAN

There’s an old man on a spaceship. He’s cheated death, tricked his way out of death, and patted himself on the back for his ingenuity. He never loses. He’s facing down a madman with a vendetta against him, and he’s literally racing against time. He wins, of course, and just as he settles into his default air of smug self-satisfaction, he looks to his right. An empty chair. A missing friend. “Jim, you’d better get down here.” At first glance, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan doesn’t feel much like a Trek movie. It feels more like one of the original series’ “bottle shows” where all the action had to take place on standing sets so that they could afford to build Vulcan in a sound stage for next week. There’s not much exploration of strange new worlds, and no new life forms or civilizations. The proceedings feel epic anyway, because like all great Trek, Wrath isn’t really about sci-fi mumbo jumbo at all; it’s about theme and character. Beyond William Shatner’s nascent paunch …

police-academy[1]

10 Movies…That Are Fifth-Quels (To Prepare You For Another Fifth Movie in a Franchise, ‘Scary Movie 5’

Most movie series don’t make it to five films. Either the filmmakers run out of ideas, or the studio reboots the characters. The latest “fifth-quel” is Scary Movie 5, which, since it’s in a franchise that just parodies whatever horror movies and cultural moments came along since the last one came out, doesn’t have to concern itself with such matters. Here are some movies that kept the gravy train going—formula and tired plotlines be damned! Death Wish V: The Face of Death (1994) The Death Wish series reflected and defined the ‘70s as a grimy, violent, seedy place, where there were brutally violent bad guys just asking to get shot by the stone-faced, equally brutally violent good guys — and it actually lasted into the ‘90s. Once more, Paul Kersey is a magnet for thugs as a woman he loves gets brutalized and he has to write some wrongs and vigilante the shit out of some shit. Starring a 73-year-old Charles Bronson. The Dead Pool (1988) The iconic Dirty Harry film series reflected and defined the …

TV Review: “$#*! My Dad Says” Is Still $#*!

How did I end up here, on a Thursday night, flipping through the channels and suddenly landing on CBS; y’know, the Tiffany Network, or more accurately as of late, the network where the cops are hunting down the killer/abductor/threatening presence against some stripper (as Roger Daltrey sings “Behind Blue Eyes” behind them). Worse than that, how did I land on $#*! My Dad Says, and when I did, was there any way the impact could have killed it? I’m not living in a bubble, I assure you. I know what people have been saying about the show, and in defiance of it, CBS not only seems to be behind it all the way, the organization has also optioned another Twitter-feed-based sitcom. A look at the credits would sway someone inclined to draw opinion from credits (TV nerds all, I assure you), with a cast including Mad TV alums Nicole Sullivan and Will Sasso, a go-for-broke  lead in William Shatner, and an equally game Missi Pyle as a boss-from-Hell. An associate producer is Laura Kightlinger who, …

Sugar Water: $#*! You’ll Be Hearing on TV Soon

On May 12 the American Civil Liberties Union filed two free-speech lawsuits in Scranton, Pennsylvania, defending citizens who were charged with using profanity by local police. Seven days later CBS announced its fall schedule, which includes the William Shatner sitcom $#*! My Dad Says, the first TV show to be based on a Twitter account, namely Justin Halpern’s Shit My Dad Says page. The watchdog group Parents Television Council, upset that the word “shit” is alluded to in the show’s title, has threatened to challenge the broadcast license of any CBS affiliate that airs the series — and promos for it — before 10 PM, even though the network has scheduled it for Thursdays at 8:30 this fall. In the past year, feature films like Inglourious Basterds and programs like Oxygen’s Dance Your Ass Off have pushed the boundaries of acceptable language on theater marquees and in TV Guide. The cable channel FX has practically built its reputation on airing original shows such as It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia that employ “shit,” “asshole,” and “goddamn” so often …

“Boston Legal” Premieres … On TV Land! And … Popdose Has … A Contest!

Boston Legal, that fast-paced and irreverent series created by the famed David E. Kelly (The Practice, Ally McBeal) has joined the lineup on TV Land, airing five nights a week at 11:00 PM. The legal dramedy starred James Spader and William Shatner. In the five years it aired on ABC, the show also featured the fine talent of Candice Bergen and John Laroquette, among others. Both Spader and Shatner won Emmys for their performances. Since we Popdose people like to give things away to our loyal readers (in the case of our TV section — which has been lacking in material lately– really loyal readers), we are happy to give the opportunity to one lucky winner the following prize: A $50.00 VISA CASH CARD and a COPY OF BOSTON LEGAL SEASON 5 on DVD. Pretty awesome, huh? To win this great prize pack, all you need to do is send an e-mail to me (malchus@popdose.com) with the correct answer to the following question: PLEASE DO NOT POST THE ANSWER IN THE COMMENTS SECTION. Name the …

DVD Review: William Shatner in “Kingdom of the Spiders”

Giant insects were all the rage in the nuclear-obsessed 50s—the king-sized ants of Them! (1954) led to an all-out assault of creepy-crawlies, with Tarantula (1955), The Black Scorpion (1957), The Deadly Mantis (1957), and Earth vs. the Spider (1958) part of the vanguard. The 70s brought the threat of ecological catastrophe, and the genre downsized to their level. Godzilla vs. the Smog Monster (1971) and The Giant Spider Invasion (1975) gave way to the angry worms in Squirm (1976), The Swarm and The Bees in 1978, an army of regular-sized ants munching on Suzanne Somers in the 1977 TV movie It Happened at Lakewood Manor, Claude Akins vs. Tarantulas: The Deadly Cargo in another 1977 TV movie and, if your nerves could stand the trip to the drive-in after all that televised terror that year, Kingdom of the Spiders. Or, more accurately, Kingdom of the Tarantulas. Not that the arachnid-sensitive will notice, as they’ll be too busy ducking under the couch as the thousand or so critters wrangled for the show go about their business. …

Bootleg City: Evan Dando and the Lemonheads

To celebrate/exploit the release of Varshons, the new covers album by Evan Dando‘s Lemonheads, Bootleg City is covering its own covers-filled edition from July 27, 2007. Of course, back in those days there was no Popdose. “But Mayor Cass,” the children always ask, “where did people go when they wanted to download music for free and write comments underneath the accompanying text that was only tangentially related to said text?” “My my!” I answer. “What big words you have in your … um … don’t tell me … starts with a V …” That’s when their smiles usually vanish. “Fine, we’ll dumb it down for you, old man. What was it called before it was called Popdose?“ For those who don’t know, before there was Popdose there was Jefitoblog, and whenever its creator, Popdose’s Jeff Giles, was foolish enough to allow guest writers to contribute, he’d often have to upload all their MP3s for them along with all their text. Uploading MP3s is a time-consuming, hand-cramping, soul-fisting process. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun being mayor …

Sugar Water: Running Scared From Progress

I didn’t accomplish much in April. Now it’s May. Oh yeah, I did ask my girlfriend, Aimiee, to marry me, as threatened in my last Sugar Water column. And the answer was no, but don’t start crying for us just yet. See, she wants to marry me, but as she put it, “If gay couples can’t legally marry in Illinois, why should straight people like us have that right? Plus you abandoned Xing, our seven-year-old adopted Chinese son who’s actually our daughter, in Nebraska right before that safe-haven law was changed last November, which brings up a wide range of trust issues.” See, all I have to do is convince the Illinois Supreme Court that gay marriage isn’t a threat to the moral fiber of our state — or Chicago’s chances of hosting the 2016 Summer Olympics — and Aimiee will be my wife. Of course, at the beginning of April I was pretty crushed since there seemed to be no way Illinois would legalize gay marriage, but suddenly its corn-fed neighbor Iowa was down …

Unsolicited Career Advice for… Jandek

To know the unknowable is one of the great pursuits of sentient beings everywhere.  Has been for as long as there’s been sentient beings.  But to truly know the unknowable (or at least be rendered confused and queasy from it), spend an hour or two listening to and pondering the music of the outsider artist Jandek.  Or, like Uncle Donnie, stumble upon him completely by accident and start writing him harassing memos, offering career advice.  Your call.  – RS TO: Jandek FROM: Don Skwatzenschitz RE: Career Advice I know who you are, Jandek. Oh, you think you’ve pulled the wool over everyone’s eyes, but I know where you are and where you live and where you’ve made all 55 of your records—every last uncomfortably atonal, virtually indecipherable one of ’em. How, you might ask? I have friends in the Houston suburbs who had me over for dinner last month while I was in town for the John Basedow Abdominal Exercise Seminar and Chili Cookoff. You might know my friends—Carrie and Tom Milkowitz. As in your …