Welcome to Artcetera. Arts-and-entertainment writers and critics post movie news, concert updates, people items, video, photos and more. Share your views. Check it daily. Remain in the know. Contributors: Mary Abbe, Aimee Blanchette, Jon Bream, Tim Campbell, Colin Covert, Laurie Hertzel, Tom Horgen, Neal Justin, Claude Peck, Rohan Preston, Chris Riemenschneider, Graydon Royce, Randy Salas and Kristin Tillotson.
Movie lovers: There's a new player in town.
Starting Tuesday, Get TV is available on WUCW, 23.2. The channel, which launched nationwide in February, offers pre-70s classic movies like 'The Talk of the Town," "From Here to Eternity" and "Suddenly."
The channel is owned by Sony Pictures Entertainment.
The Twin Cities joined the family Tuesday morning,along with Oklahoma City and Madison. The channel is currently in roughly 35 markets.
When FX announced it was going to produce a new version of "Fargo," I had my doubts.
TV shows based on beloved movies usually belong in the woodchipper. In fact, an earlier attempt starring Edie Falco never saw the light of day. Plus, the show was being created by Noah Hawley, whose previous credits include writing for "Bones" and cooking a mean lasagna. Why the heck did this fella think he could be the third Coen brother?
So you could have knocked me over with a snowflake when I took in the final product. Not only is the mini-series the front runner to take home an Emmy; it just may be one of the most engaging, brilliantly acted, unpredictable products ever seen on TV.
Last night's finale was thoroughly satisfying as both Lorne Malvo (Billy Bob Thornton, pictured) and Lester Nygaard (Martin Freeman) get what was coming to them. Watching Nygaard turn into Heisenberg's little brother was both hilarious and harrowing, a perfect protagonist in the Coen World. The expression on his face when he literally was treading on thin ice should also make him an Emmy front runner.
Not everything was perfect. Some characters, like Oliver Platt's Stravos Milos, disappeared into the ether. Colin Hanks' accent was more Canadian than Minnesotan. And having Molly Solverson (Allison Tolman) suddenly turn into a damsel-in-distress in the last reel didn't quite gel with the rest of her arc.
This should be the model for more programs down the line: A limited series with a tidy ending that doesn't leave us hanging.One writer responsible for almost every line of dialogue. Great actors who don't feel bogged down by a series that could have them handcuffed for five years.
Let's also give the directors and cinematographers credit for capturing the look of northern Minnesota. Sure, it would have been nice if they actually had filmed here, but the Canadian landscape was such a convincing fill-in, I could practically see Bemidji's Sanford Center in the distance.
Now the big question: Will "Fargo" come back? Or more pointedly, SHOULD it come back?
Hawley has said that if FX picks it up, which it hasn't done yet, the next season will take place in a different city with different characters. Not sure I can take him at his word. He also told us that the TV series has no connection to the movie, which was clearly not the case. (Pointing out the references to the film as well as other Coens' projects was part of the fun). I sure wouldn't mind spending more time on the couch with Molly and Gus, the sweethearts of the season.
But maybe we should leave well enough alone.
It's hard to imagine Hawley being able to match these past 10 episodes. Then again, he's already overcome my initial pessimism. Maybe he can do it again.
Perhaps there are some roads you DO go down.
Ryan Seacrest/AP photo
The hardest working person in Los Angeles is taking a break to come to Minneapolis.
But Ryan Seacrest won't be on vacation. He's making the trip as part of the "American Idol" auditions on June 18, roughly six months before the series returns to the air. It's the show's first visit back here since 2006 when more than 10,000 hopefuls showed up.
The judges--Jennifer Lopez, Harry Connick, Jr., Keith Urban--won't be joining him on this outing, but will come to Minneapolis for the Judges' Round at a time that has yet to be determined.
The nitty gritty:
WHO: Men and women 15-28 years old as of June 18 who are eligible to work in the U.S.
WHERE: Mariucci Arena, 1901 4th St. SE, Minneapolis
HOW: Wristbands will be distributed starting at 7 a.m. June 18. Contestants will not be allowed to camp out or line up before 6 a.m.
KARE, the Twin Cities' NBC affiliate, has won two Edward R. Murrow awards, which are among the most prestigious honors in the electronic media world.
The station was cited in feature reporting was a piece called "Climbing Out" and in hard-news reporting for "Know Before You Tow."
MPR was also recognized for its website.
The awards will be presented Oct. 6 in New York.
Melissa Etheridge and Linda Wallem/photo by Richard Shotwell
We don't know if the third time will be a charm for Melissa Etheridge, but we can guarantee that she's going to have a lot of laughs. The rocker, who previously had long-term relationships with Julie Cypher and Tammy Lynn Michaels, got married Saturday to Linda Wallem, who spent time at the Dudley Riggs Brave New Workshop in the early 80s. Wallem was attending the University of Minnesota, but dropped out of school when the Minneapolis-based comedy troupe came calling.
Wallem would go on to create the Showtime series, "Nurse Jackie" with another former U of M student, Liz Brixius.
In a 2010 interview with the Star Tribune, Wallem spoke highly of her time in the Twin Cities.
"The best thing I ever did was learn improv," she said. "You're forced to open your mind, open yourself to possibilities. I credit Brave New Workshop with everything."
Etheridge and Wallem, both 53, have been dating since 2010.
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