If you knew the end of the world was coming, you might want to have a last laugh enjoying This is the End, featuring a whole gallery of current Hollywood A-Listers hilariously playing exaggerated versions (?) of themselves. Seth Rogen stars and co-wrote and co-directed with Evan Goldberg this apocalyptic comedy in which Jay Baruchel comes to L.A. to visit old friend Seth and winds up being dragged along to a bacchanal at James Franco’s mansion. As Jay’s discomfort level reaches its peak (he’s not crazy about Seth’s new Hollywood friends, particularly Jonah Hill), he and Seth head out to a convenience store—and lo, the end of the world arrives in the form of explosions, mass chaos and a huge earthquake (which sucks in many game guest stars including Rihanna, Jason Segel and Aziz Ansari), as well as the arrival of some lascivious, murderous, and ravenous monsters. Rogen and Baruchel, along with Jonah Hill and Craig Robinson, take refuge at Franco’s house, and all is semi-well (considering it’s the end of the world) until they’re rudely surprised by Danny McBride, who not only has crashed the party, but proceeds to use up many of their supplies for an exorbitantly wasteful breakfast.
Much of This is the End is seriously funny, as the six stars vie for food (especially the Milky Way bar), attention and affection. All the actors are inspired: if you like Rogen, Robinson, Hill, Baruchel and McBride you won’t be disappointed. Michael Cera also scores, playing himself as so coke and sex-obsessed that an errant light pole barely deters him, while an armed Emma Watson makes a welcome appearance until she takes off with the group’s supplies (as the result of a misunderstanding that goes on a little too long). However it is Franco who especially impresses as a screamingly wealthy, secretive, self-centered version of himself who is obsessed with the idea of sacrificing himself to show what a good friend he is---if not in real life, at least with the proposed sequel to Pineapple Express. The idea of sacrifice in the service of friendship runs throughout the hijinks and the carnage, leading to a satisfying ending…at least for most of the cast.
For some reason, The Internship has been gathering some hostile notices. I hope some reviewers aren’t confusing this second Vince Vaughn/Jared Smith-scripted, Shawn Levy-directed collaboration with last year’s The Watch. I mean, The Watch was grim fare indeed with nary a chuckle among the powerhouse cast. The Internship, which reteams Vaughn with Owen Wilson is another matter altogether: light-hearted, fast-paced, genuinely funny at times, while keeping a smile on your face at other times. Vaughn and Wilson are both at the top of their game as career salesmen who are left in the lurch when their watch company goes under. In the ever-changing world of technology, they’re viewed (by others and themselves) as dinosaurs. Vaughn hits upon the idea of interning for Google, and convinces a wary Wilson to brave a Skype interview and join the ranks of summer interns competing for the rare Google paying job.
Much of The Internship can be seen as formulaic; Vaughn and Wilson have to win over their much younger colleagues, as well as their…younger superiors; there are the inevitable screw-ups; there is the one evil guy who wants to sabotage them (although in a nice moment, he says to Vaughn that he doesn’t have to do a thing-Vince can foul up all by himself); some tentative attempts at romance among the younger and the older set; and the inevitable moment when the guys prove they can still be relevant. However, it’s all good clean fun and features some good supporting turns from Assif Mandvi, Rose Byrne and John Goodman, as well as an amusing cameo from Will Ferrell as a man who makes his living with mattresses.
Now You See Me is a lot of fun indeed-- most of the way through. Four magicians (Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Dave Franco, Isla Fisher) are maneuvered into joining forces by a mysterious benefactor, and one year later, as a group called “The Four Horsemen”, dazzle audiences in Las Vegas with a trick that seemingly involves using an audience member to rob a bank—in Paris—through teleportation. That the trick succeeds all too well brings them to the attention of the FBI (led by Mark Ruffalo and Melanie Laurent) as well as a professional magic-debunker (Morgan Freeman).
From there, the complications mount, and the sleight of hand continues as characters and motives are not necessarily what they seem. While I enjoyed the various twists and turns (though a little Jesse Eisenberg goes a long way), Now You See Me loses momentum at the moment of its biggest trick, consisting of a twist that many might guess in advance—but without an altogether satisfying payoff.
If you’re like me, once summer hits in Los Angeles, live music is a priority to compliment the wonderful weather we get at this time of year.
London based band Bastille are the UK’s next big thing. Their debut album charted in the UK at number 1. Their CD ‘Bad Blood; is a bit of a confusing one. It has a great sound, great vocals and great lyrics, but I get the feeling that they are trying too hard and at times do not come across as authentic.
American Dreamers: The Great Gatsby, Pain and Gain
The American Dream-success, excess, money, more money—is the subject of two very entertaining films attracting the crowds to your local cinemas. The bigger draw is the latest adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel, The Great Gatsby, brought to the screen with maximum 3-D (or 2-D if that’s your choice) razzle-dazzle--and a surprising degree of sensitivity by Baz Luhrmann.
Nohoartsdistrict.com is dedicated to promoting local musicians/bands. Sarah D caught our attention! Here is what she has to say....
Kick off the summer enjoying live music. Check out the festivals below and for more events, visit our calendar
5 May 2013 at 2:00 PM
CINCO! Hottest Concert Of The Year! 30 Of Social Media's Most Popular Stars
Avalon Hollywood, 1735 Vine St, Los Angeles, CA
May 5 2013 at 11:00 AM
30th Annual Topanga Blues Festival
Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum (Topanga, CA) 1419 North Topanga Canyon Boulevard Topanga, CA 90290
Starts May 11, 2013
Eat See Hear Festival 2013
May 12, 2013 at 3:00PM
10th Annual Mother's Day Jazz & Blues Extravaganza
June 7th, 8th, & 9th, 2013
Queen Mary – Long Beach
June 20 & 21 2013 11:00 AM
Vans Warped Tour 2013
June 15 & 16
Playboy Jazz Festival 2013
**** Father’s Day Weekend! ****
June 29, 2013 at 6:00 PM
24th Annual Mariachi USA Festival
Good vocals go with just about any genre and can also save many ill composed songs. Luckily James Blake has not only good vocals, but also good instrumentals to go with it. The London born singer-songwriter and producer has recently released his sophomore album ‘Overgrown’ and just like his debut self-titled release ‘James Blake’ he has taken his talents and shared them with the world.
Jackie Robinson (Chadwick Boseman) is at the plate many times in 42, Brian Helgeland’s effective, occasionally rousing film that focuses on Robinson’s first few years in the majors with the Brooklyn Dodger organization.
The wonderful thing about the movie Dorfman in Love, playing at the NoHo 7 theater on Lankershim Boulevard, is that it is an extremely well acted story with quite a few unusual twists.
Daughter, originally just the solo work of Elena Tonra, have spent the past few years making a name for themselves, so their debut album was highly anticipated and it is safe to say that they truly lived up to their expectations. ‘If You Leave’ is a wonderful collection of songs from the three piece band.
"You let your hair grow out," says Andy Williams as we soundcheck for the interview. "You look like a fucking hippie."
Real Magic is Lacking in Oz and The Incredible Burt Wonderstone
Jack the Giant Slayer reunites the formidable team of Bryan Singer and Christopher McQuarrie (Usual Suspects, Valkyrie) for an entertaining spin on the Jack and the Beanstalk/Jack the Giant Killer fairy tales.
The NoHo Arts District dot Com team likes to showcase the immense talent we have in our growing one-mile neighborhood. We had the pleasure of meeting and chatting with North Hollywood band Glass Battles.
The British folk scene is one that is truly thriving at the moment. Each week it seems that we are introduced to a new fresh-faced artist or act that claim they are going to take the genre further.
Perhaps you’re sitting home right now, wondering which February release not to see…or you might be consulting the list of Oscar nominees to determine which you should see before Oscar night. Then again, you may just want to catch up on some nice things you (and Oscar) might have missed.
It's the last day of the Summer Slaughter tour and things are hectic in Anaheim.
Funeral For A Friend has finally released their eagerly anticipated album ‘Conduit’ and things are sounding interesting. This band is without a doubt a huge influence on the current British post-hardcore scene. Their debut CD ‘Casually Dressed & Deep in Conversation’, was of such high quality it has been said by many that the band have never really matched up to the standard they so highly set themselves. As the albums went on we heard the band start to stray from their roots that started it all, not to say they were any less appealing, they just didn’t seem to have that nostalgia that they possessed in their first record.
In Allen Hughes’ modern-day noir throwback Broken City, Mark Wahlberg has big problems: he’s a troubled former NYC cop (after a controversial, incendiary shooting years earlier put him in the crosshairs of ambitious police commissioner Geoffrey Wright and seemingly sympathetic mayor Russell Crowe) ekeing out a living as a private eye.
"It was surreal being there," bassist Johnny Adger says of touring Europe in 2010 with Them Crooked Vultures. "On the first night, [Dave Grohl, John Paul Jones, and Josh Homme] introduced themselves to us. I was like 'yeah, I know who you are,'" he laughs.
Kathryn Bigelow’s gripping Zero Dark Thirty portrays the search for Osama Bin Laden in the aftermath of 9/11, through the eyes of a determined, young, lone-wolf CIA officer (Jessica Chastain)-- and the movie pulls no punches.
Ryan Minic is the creator of Ryan's Rock Show. Ryan's Rock Show is a daily resource for music news and candid video interviews covering the most relevant bands in the rock music community.
Manchester alternative rock newcomers Shooting Pigeons have just release their debut EP ‘City of Peace’. Consisting of a mere four tracks, the band really had to focus in on their talents to get people to listen to them; and that is exactly what they did.
When I first learned that Quentin Tarantino’s next project (after the grand Inglorious Basterds) was going to be the spaghetti western homage Django Unchained, I’ll admit I was a trifle concerned; for every classic A Fistful of Dollars, there are at least twenty messy spaghetti-o rip-offs with titles like Eat My Lead and Die, Zartana!
When they landed in Philadelphia after an 8-hour flight from France, Hypno5e's bassist Gredin and their light guy were denied entry into the US. "Customs wouldn't let them in," drummer Thibault Lamy says, smoking a hand-rolled cigarette on the front patio at Bonnerhaus.
Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln gets off to a shaky start; after (what is for Spielberg) a rather perfunctory Civil War battle scene, various Union soldiers, black and white, talk to a seated, pensive President Abraham Lincoln (Daniel Day Lewis) about the war, injustice, equality, and the speech they’ve all taken to heart, …you know, The Gettysburg Address.
Wiz Khalifa is currently one of Hip-Hop’s hottest musicians and has recently realised his latest album ‘O.N.I.F.C.’. So how does it compare to ‘Rolling Papers’?
How did you get started in the music industry?
Noah: I started recording myself around sixteen. I started with an actual 4 track tape recorder and worked my way up to teaching myself
Pro-Tools and some other software. Now I pretty much do the same thing, just at a slightly bigger scale. I record everything at home,
and work independantly for the most part. I guess the only difference now is that more people listen to what I make, so that's cool.
What makes your music unique?
Noah: I'm a big fan of juxtaposition. It seems like bands can go in a very electronic direction, with synths and drum machines, or a very natural
direction with acoustic guitars and natural drums, slide guitar ect. I like to take my favorite elements of both and try to play them
against each other. And then find a harmony between the two that's compelling. I think that juxtaposition is what makes a lot art
compelling. Something that you want to look at or listen to more than once.
What would you call your style of music?
Noah: Acoustic songs with a lot of electronic elements.
Indie is probably where I fit in the best, literally and genre-wise, but I've always made music similar to what I make now.
And I've never felt like I fit in comfortably into any genre. But I think a lot of artists feel that way, so I'll leave it to other people to
decide what to call it.
What has been your favorite gig so far and why?
Noah: I was playing at someone's house in Northern California. I was outside and the place was in the mountains. As soon as I started playing
there was a really strong echo coming from the mountains on both sides. At first I thought it was going to be distracting but after a
few minutes it got really addicting. After a while I was just making sounds to hear what they would sound like coming back.
That was really fun.
Any advice to a band/solo artist trying to cut their first CD?
Noah: Yeah, people aren't as interested with the specific sound of your music as much as the soul behind it. Don't force anything,
and keep it simple.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Noah: Making music no matter what. Hopefully on an even bigger scale.
What do you like about NoHo?
Noah: I live in the arts district so there are so many awesome things so close together. One of my favorite things in NoHo is
"Kulak's Woodshed". It's a music venue that's set up like a TV studio and the perfomances are broadcast live on the internet.
It's a great place to play and there's a very supportive music community there.
Daniel Craig’s third outing as James Bond, Skyfall, kicks off with a terrific pre-credit action sequence that culminates in a ferocious hand to hand battle on top of a speeding train (is there any other kind) and ends with our hero being taken for dead--I won’t spill the salient details, except to say that the circumstances lead Mr. Bond to feeling a little embittered—and--spoiler alert--reduced to drinking a bottle of Heineken in a wretched room (rest assured, Bond fans, he does not enter a swanky establishment to order one). This opening sequence, paired with a memorable title song from Adelle, and you have one of the best beginnings in the Bond canon.
French touch indie rockers Boolfights are on the verge of releasing their latest album ‘Feral’.