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Recent Entertainment articles from Daily Dot

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    Depending on what you’ve been binging on Amazon Prime, you may have to take some vacation time and kick it into high gear. There are several movies expiring from the Prime catalog in June, but the biggest blow comes in the form of several multi-season series. We’re losing Whedonverse entries Firefly and Dollhouse, which is a bummer, but at least they’re both relatively short. Far worse will be the plight of anyone who’s in the middle of an X-Files or NYPD Blue binge. 

    Unfortunately, Amazon was the primary streaming home for the ‘90s cop hit NYPD Blue—it’s not currently available on Netflix or Hulu. The good news is, most of these shows have come and gone several times in recent years, as contracts expire and are then renewed. Hopefully Blue will be back on Prime soon. And if not, the also-excellent Southland is about to premiere on Hulu in June, so…

    As for X-Files, Netflix still has your back.

    June 3

    Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (Unrated and Super-Sized versions also expiring)

    June 6

    All the President's Men

    June 14

    Dollhouse: Seasons 1-2

    Firefly: Season 1

    Lie To Me: Seasons 1-3

    NYPD Blue: Seasons 1-12

    Roswell: Seasons 1-3

    The Unit: Seasons 1-4

    The X-Files: Seasons 1-9

    June 19

    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo: Extended Edition (2009)

    The Girl Who Played with Fire: Extended Edition (2009)

    The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest: Extended Edition (2009)

    Happy People: A Year in the Taiga

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    The good news for Hulu subscribers is that very little is leaving the service in the month of June. The bad news for any subscribers who happen to be parents of young children is, one of the casualties might be that show your kid is currently obsessed with. 

    Several popular PBS kids’ series are going the way of the dodo from Hulu’s catalog at the end of the month, including two that are still on semi-regular rotation in my household: Dinosaur Train and Wild Kratts.

    Here’s some more good news, though: You’ll still be able to stream three seasons of Wild Kratts on Netflix, and one season of Dinosaur Train. Kid demanding more Arthur? Amazon has seasons and seasons of the stuff, all included with a Prime membership. Same goes for Caillou. So, as long as Hulu isn’t your only source of streaming entertainment, you should be good to go.

    June 30

    Arthur (PBS)

    Cailou (PBS)

    Dinosaur Train (PBS)

    Wild Kratts (PBS)



    Gunslinger Girl

    Kino’s Journey

    Last Exile

    Love Live! School Idol Project

    Lupin the Third: Part I



    Space Brothers

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    If you need some comedy in your life to help fight off the rising temperatures, Hulu will have your back this June. First up, the critically acclaimed Hulu original series Casual returns for a second season on June 7. It stars Michaela Watkins as a recently divorced single mom who moves in with her promiscuous younger brother, who attempts to help her navigate the landmines of the modern dating scene.

    Also arriving this month is the second and final season of FX’s Married, which stars Judy Greer and Nat Faxon as a married couple (natch) who are facing all the usual hurdles for a long-time relationship entering middle age: financial hardships, crazy-making kids, and never enough time to fan the flames that drew them together in the first place. Greer is great in pretty much everything, and with only 23 episodes total, Married is perfect bite-size summer binging.

    June 1

    America’s Got Talent: Season 11 premiere

    Maya & Marty in Manhattan: Series premiere

    Southland: Season 1-5

    Apocalypse Now

    Apocalypse Now Redux

    The Black Stallion


    Criminal Law

    CSNY: Déjà vu

    Death Wish 2

    Double Whammy


    The Golden Child

    The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

    Ground Control



    In & Out

    Iron Eagle IV: On the Attack

    Midnight in Paris

    The Million Dollar Hotel

    Mulholland Falls

    One From the Heart

    The Presidio

    The Rage - Carrie 2

    Runaway Bride

    Six Degrees of Separation



    Trading Mom

    Ulee’s Gold


    Wayne’s World

    June 2

    Master Chef: Season 7 premiere

    June 3

    La Seleccion: Season 2 premiere

    Barely Famous: Season 2 premiere

    Rules of Attraction

    June 4

    Love & Mercy

    June 5

    Life or Debt: Season 1 finale

    Miss USA 2016 - Special

    June 6

    Rizzoli & Isles: Season 6

    RuPaul’s Drag Race: Season 8 finale

    The Cokeville Miracle

    June 7

    Casual: Season 2 premiere

    Faking It: Season 3 finale

    Rosaline - Animated short premiere

    June 8

    Family Therapy: Season 1 finale

    June 10

    Burning Man

    June 11

    He Named Me Malala

    June 12

    30 for 30: OJ Made in America Part 1: Series premiere

    Bar Rescue: Season 4 finale

    Your Pretty Face is Going to Hell: Season 2

    June 13

    Famous: Series premiere

    Regular Show: Season 7

    June 14

    The League: Season 7

    Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge: Series premiere

    Ink Master: Season 7 finale

    Awkward: Season 5 finale

    June 15

    To Tell the Truth: Series premiere

    Uncle Buck: Series premiere

    Addicted to Fresno

    Crazy About Tiffany's

    June 16

    Married: Season 2

    June 17

    Home Free

    June 19

    We Bare Bears: Season 1

    June 20

    The Good Wife: Season 7

    June 22

    Stand Up Guys

    June 23

    La Viuda Negra II: Season finale

    June 24

    Elaine Stritch - Shoot Me

    June 26

    Rick and Morty: Season 2

    June 27

    Celebrity Family Feud: Season 2 premiere

    $100,000 Pyramid: Series premiere

    Match Game: Series premiere

    June 28

    Banished: Season 1

    DCI Banks: Season 4

    Houdini & Doyle: Season 1 finale

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    If you’re an HBO Go/Now subscriber and you’re craving a softcore BDSM fix, get it while you can: Fifty Shades of Grey has been a bad, bad film and must now be punished by departing the Go lineup at the end of June. If you’re a fan of the books by E.L. James, or just curious to see what all the fuss is about, you’ve got until June 30 to find out.

    Also leaving the HBO catalog are the classic One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest; the John Hughes-scripted ‘80s fave Pretty in Pink; Judd Apatow’s Knocked Up; and the underrated Kingsman: The Secret Service, which is a damn good time. You can also still watch Bryan Singer’s last X-Men movie (Days of Future Past) before you check out his latest one (Apocalypse) in theaters.

    June 30

    Fifty Shades of Grey

    Get Hard

    The Godfather Epic

    The Hills Have Eyes II

    Home Alone 2

    Kingsman: The Secret Service

    Knocked Up

    Malcolm X

    Music and Lyrics

    One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

    Pretty in Pink

    The Purge: Anarchy

    The Rainmaker


    Scary Movie 2

    She’s All That


    Troop Beverly Hills

    Unfinished Business

    What We Do in the Shadows

    Wish I Was There

    X-Men: Days of Future Past

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    HBO Go/HBO Now subscribers still have three of the cable net’s top hits to keep them entertained this June: Game of Thrones, Veep, and Silicon Valley. But given how traumatic this season of Thrones has been, you may need some alternatives to distract you from the violent crying jags that hit every time somebody holds open a door for you. Thankfully, HBO is about to dry your tears by stranding Matt Damon on Mars.

    That’s right, HBO Go/Now subscribers will be able to check out last year’s critically and audience-acclaimed The Martian beginning on June 4. Based on the best-selling 2011 novel by Andy Weir, The Martian stars Matt Damon as an astronaut left behind on Mars after his crewmates believe him to have been killed. Stranded alone on the Red Planet, he must somehow try to survive long enough for a rescue mission to recover him. The flick was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including best actor and best adapted screenplay, and is currently sitting at a damned respectable 92 percent Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes.

    Here’s the rest of what’s coming to HBO Go in June.

    June 1

    101 Dalmatians

    102 Dalmatians

    American Gangster (Extended Cut)

    The Astronaut’s Wife

    A Beautiful Mind

    Black Sea

    Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead

    Dr. Doolittle

    Eight Legged Freaks

    High Fidelity

    Igby Goes Down

    Independence Day

    Jet Li’s Fearless


    Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa

    Maps to the Stars

    The Maze Runner


    Next Friday

    Ocean’s Thirteen

    Problem Child

    Problem Child 2

    Problem Child 3

    The Transporter

    Wall Street

    The Wrestler

    June 2

    Quincy Jones: Burning the Light

    June 4

    The Martian

    June 11


    June 15

    The Boy Next Door

    June 18

    Ted 2

    June 20



    June 22

    Any Given Sunday with Bill Simmons

    June 25

    Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials

    June 26

    Game of Thrones (Season 6 finale)

    Silicon Valley (Season 3 finale)

    Veep (Season 5 finale)

    June 27

    How to Let Go of the World (and Love All the Things Climate Can’t Change)

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    Some nights you turn to Netflix for a bit of comfort food, courtesy of a beloved movie you’ve already seen a million times. Other times, however, you’re looking for something a little more off the beaten path. Maybe it’s an offbeat indie comedy, a challenging documentary, or even a foreign film that widens your perspective on the world. Watching Legally Blonde for the 20th time is great, but if you’re going to pay $9.99 a month for Netflix (or let’s be honest, ask for your roommate’s password), you may as well use it to expand your horizons every once in awhile.

    1) Welcome to Me

    Kristen Wiig has quietly matured into a very fine character actress. Since breaking out in Bridesmaids in 2011, the former SNL cast member has carved out a niche playing troubled women, particularly ones grappling with mental illness. In The Skeleton Twins, Wiig played a woman dealing with depression and infidelity, but Welcome to Me—about a woman with borderline personality disorder who wins the lottery—provides the finest showcase yet for the comedian’s gifts. What makes Welcome to Me, which walks a delicate tightrope between satire and mockery, work so beautifully is how deeply empathetic Wiig’s portrayal is. Alice Krieg, who uses the money to buy her own talk show, is a character created with love and deep affection. Welcome to Me is incredibly painful in its acute observations about narcissism and entertainment culture, but at times, it’s almost sweet in its embrace of difference. —Nico Lang

    2) In Bruges

    Few movies balance the darkness and the comedy that necessitates a “dark comedy” as well as In Bruges. Blisteringly funny but essentially nihilistic at its core, the debut feature from playwright Martin McDonagh cemented his status as a director to be reckoned with. Unlike most scribes who make the jump from stage to screen, McDonagh’s work has always felt cinematic, and with In Bruges, he puts his stamp on an well-worn Hollywood story—that of two misfit hitmen, played here by Brendan Gleeson and Colin Farrell. Gleeson is likable as always, but the real revelation in In Bruges is Farrell—who, as the conflicted Ray, does his best acting while also doing his least acting. It’s a refreshingly restrained turn from the often hammy star and worth taking a look at for anyone who was disappointed in the second season of True Detective (read: everybody). —Chris Osterndorf

    3) The One I Love 

    I mean no disrespect when I say that The One I Love is like the best episode of The Twilight Zone never made. Starring Mark Duplass (Safety Not Guaranteed) and Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men), Charlie McDonnell's feature debut is a perfectly executed exercise in economical weirdness. A married couple (played by Moss and Duplass) on the verge of a split go to a secluded house for the weekend to save their marriage. The two soon find, however, that in the grand tradition of Rod Serling, the estate isn’t what it seems—and neither are they. What elevates the thriller from a gimmick is the nimble writing, which has the feel of a great off-Broadway play. The One I Love dares to ask painful questions about the state of modern relationships. We all want to push our partners to be the best version of themselves, but what would you give up for perfection? —N.L.

    4) In the Loop  

    Just because the reality of American politics now rivals most political satire in terms of absurdity doesn’t make In the Loop any less sharp or any less brutally funny. Spunoff from director Armando Iannucci’s BBC series The Thick of It—as well as a spiritual predecessor to his HBO creation, Veep—this 2009 Oscar-nominee for best original screenplay depicts a transcontinental struggle between Great Britain and America to prevent an impending war. Starring familiar faces such as Doctor Who’s Peter Capaldi and Veep’s Anna Chlumsky, In the Loop is the kind of gem of a movie that hides in plain sight. It’s only gotten more incisive in the years since its release, and you’ll have no idea how you lived without Malcolm Tucker’s wonderfully artful swearing once it enters your life. —C.O.

    5) Happy Go-Lucky  

    Happy-Go-Lucky is nothing short of a miracle. Directed by Mike Leigh, the film was developed through the British auteur’s trademark method of workshopping the script with his actors. From Another Year to Secrets and Lies, Leigh’s films appear to take place on the fly, as if we’ve dropped into the lives of other people by accident. But that description masks how meticulously crafted and profound they are. Happy-Go-Lucky is an unbelievably funny meditation on the challenges of optimism, featuring one of the decade’s best performances. Sally Hawkins, who won the Golden Globe for her portrayal of a chipper schoolteacher, makes Poppy an unforgettable creation, the kind of character you hold close to your heart for years. Her ebullient, infectious laugh is worth the price of admission alone. —N.L.

    6) We Are the Best! 

    There’s nothing quite like a simple story well told. While We Are the Best! doesn’t feel revolutionary at first, this straightforward account of three young girls’ attempt to form a punk band in 1980s Stockholm resonates the more you think about it. From Together director Lukas Moodysson, this 2013 film captures the raptures of first friendships, crushes, and musical obsessions in a way that feels so real, it’s no surprise that it’s based on his wife Coco Moodysson own autobiographical graphic novel. Perhaps that’s why We Are the Best! doesn’t sensationalize or trivialize the experiences of young women the way Hollywood and cinema at large tends to. Although the movie is charming and a lot of fun (similar to this year’s Sing Street), it’s also quietly transgressive. And what’s more punk than that? —C.O.

    7) Citizen Ruth  

    Citizen Ruth is one of those movies that becomes a sacred object to those who love it, one you’ll force people to watch for years after you find out they haven’t seen it. Although the film received mixed reviews upon release, the 1996 black comedy has aged impressively, a perfect fit for our era of female antiheroes. When it comes to unlikable female leads, Ruth Stoops is a doozy: A pregnant sociopath with an addiction to huffing paint, she manipulates every person with whom she comes into contact. But as she finds, that goes both ways. Through a series of wacky misadventures (are there any other kind?), her pregnancy becomes a cause celebre among both pro-choice and pro-life advocates. This gives first-time director Alexander Payne (Sideways, Election) a chance to do some searing bipartisan skewering, but it wouldn’t work without Laura Dern’s fearlessly funny performance. —N.L.

    8) Exit Through the Gift Shop 

    Is it an elaborate prank or a piece of high performance art? Is it an inviting work of genius, or is it subtly poking fun at everyone who views it? These questions apply to both Exit Through the Gift Shop as a work of art and to the art world the film depicts. Directed by the ever-enigmatic Banksy, this documentary begins as a co-exploration of the street art movement, and the French shopkeeper who sought to capture it, Thierry Guetta (a.k.a. Mr. Brainwash). But when Banksy decides halfway through the movie that Thierry might not be, so to speak, the ideal candidate to make the definitive movie on this movement, Exit Through the Gift Shop’s narrative takes an unexpected turn. The film eventually becomes a meditation on the idea of authenticity in an art culture that is increasingly commercialized. If that sounds too esoteric for you, don’t worry, Exit Through the Gift Shop is also riotously funny and at times utterly unbelievable. —C.O.

    9) Iris  

    A movie about fashion icon Iris Apfel should be as fabulous as her extraordinary life. On that front, Albert Maysles’ film is a smashing success. The legendary filmmaker has a way with larger-than-life subjects. With his late brother, David, Maysles directed Grey Gardens, the acclaimed documentary about a pair of faded socialites living in a condemned house in the Hamptons. In the film’s most famous scene, Little Edie Beale models her “revolutionary costume for the day,” a bathing suit with a makeshift headwrap and an American flag. Like Edie, Iris was a one-woman trailblazer, someone who refused to be defined by convention. The force-of-nature is a lively presence on screen, but Iris has a quiet poignancy to it, as the aging icon deals with the daily realities of growing old. Iris is so dazzlingly pleasurable that you might not realize how touching this love letter to oddballs everywhere truly is. —N.L.

    10) Room 237 

    Do you like movies? Better yet, are you obsessed with movies? What about one movie, specifically? If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions, you have qualified as a prime candidate for watching Room 237. One of the most original documentaries of the past few years, director Rodney Ascher's exploration of fan theories swirling around Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining is a testament to the power of cinema to captivate and consume. Native Americans, the moon-landing, and more fall in the crosshairs of various Shining truthers whom Ascher allows to expound on their theories at length here. What’s great about Room 237 is that it does not endorse any of these theories, although Ascher uses an objective style, so as not to condemn any of them either. Instead, the movie offers a meditation on how we project our own desires and politics into cinema. It’s essential viewing for movie buffs. —C.O.

    11) Nightcrawler 

    Jake Gyllenhaal might not be the best living actor, but he is certainly the hardest working. Since 2011’s Source Code, it would be difficult to find someone with a more diverse array of challenging roles—from the explosive boxing drama Southpaw (for which Gyllenhaal famously hulked up) to more sinuous work in Prisoners and Nightcrawler. In the latter, the 35-year-old actor particularly gets under the skin as Louis Bloom, a self-taught cameraman determined to make it in the news entertainment business. Louis gets a job working as a stringer for a producer, Nina (Rene Russo), working the graveyard shift of the lowest-rated network in Los Angeles. Bloom is willing to do anything to get the story, and desperate for ratings, Nina doesn’t realize the monster she’s creating to get it. Directed by Dan Gilroy (The Bourne Legacy), Nightcrawler is a satire of our news media culture so spot-on you may need to shower after. —N.L.

    12) Bronson 

    Director of Drive and the upcoming The Neon Demon, Nicolas Winding Refn’s penchant for exploring themes of masculinity and violence may have reached its peak with this 2008 British film based on the story of the man oft thought to be the country’s most violent prisoner. In Bronson, 19-year-old Michael Peterson is sentenced to seven years behind bars for robbing a post office. He ends up serving 34, three decades of which he carries out in solitary confinement. During this time, Peterson adopts the alter ego of Charles Bronson (yes, like the actor), and the story only gets weirder from there. The center of it all is Tom Hardy in a performance that’s like watching a star about to go supernova. —C.O.

    13) Tangerine 

    So many movies are given infinite resources and still manage to feel so miniscule that they might as well not even exist. Sean Baker’s Tangerine, however, is a testament to how much filmmakers can achieve with very little. Shot on an iPhone, the movie cost relative pennies to make, but Tangerine is a hypnotic, extraordinary film about the friendship between two sex workers. That bond is tested over the course of a very long day, and the plot’s simplicity masks its power. After finding out her boyfriend isn’t faithful, Sin-Dee (Kiki Rodriguez) goes off on a quest to locate his mistress. Meanwhile, Alexandra (Mya Taylor) prepares for a performance at a local club. Filmed on a stretch of Santa Monica known as a nexus of prostitution in the city, Tangerine captures the feel of Los Angeles better than any film I’ve ever seen. It’s simultaneously stylish, low-key, and groundbreaking in its authentic depiction of life on the streets. —N.L.

    14) I Am Love  

    Where do you even start with I Am Love? There’s director Luca Guadagnino’s luscious visual palette, obviously. There’s Tilda Swinton doing classic Tilda Swinton (right before the chameleonic actor became a household name). But most importantly, there’s the overwhelming sense that camp has never been taken so seriously as it was in this 2010 Italian stunner. Receiving a much-deserved Oscar nod for best costume design, everything about this movie is gorgeously over the top. Like the very clothes she lives her life in, the story of Swinton’s Emma Recchi, who experiences love and loss amidst Italy’s upper crust, is fabulous, gorgeous, sumptuous, and completely unsubtle. But it also never blinks, and it’s that blind commitment to its own self-importance that makes I Am Love such a unique watch. —C.O.

    15) The Cook, The Thief, His Wife & Her Lover  

    British director Peter Greenaway’s most famous film was also his most controversial, and this orgiastic feast of sex, betrayal, and cannibalism is just as incendiary today as when it was released. Filmed entirely on a stage, The Cook, The Wife, The Thief, and Her Lover envelops with a rich, painterly lusciousness, and this is not happenstance. The Banquet of the Officers of the St George Militia Company, by the Dutch artist Frans Hals, looms in the background of the film; the movie shares its color scheme—sable juxtaposed with a shocking scarlet. Everything about the film is a jolt to the senses, one that’s thrillingly alive. It’s also memorable for Helen Mirren’s ferocious turn as an unfaithful wife determined to get vengeance for the death of her lover. The film’s gruesome twist shouldn’t be spoiled, and it might not be to everyone’s tastes. But for the right kind of viewer, the meal is bloody delicious. —N.L.

    16) Velvet Goldmine 

    It does Todd Haynes a disservice to think of him merely as a master of queer cinema, because Haynes is simply a master filmmaker—period. Nevertheless, questions about identity often play a big role in Haynes’ movies. In Velvet Goldmine, Haynes explores what happens one’s persona overshadows who that person actually was. The film centers around a journalist (Christian Bale) who sets out to explore the relationship between between famed ‘70s rock stars Brian Slade (Jonathan Rhys-Meyers) and Curt Wild (Ewan McGregor), as well as his own relationship with music. Aliens, Oscar Wilde, Reagan-era politics, references to Citizen Kane and 1984, and a mysterious green broach are prominently featured in a film that equates homosexuality with an otherworldly kind of magic. But the plot isn’t the point of this movie. Velvet Goldmine is a feast for the eyes and ears, and finds the music-obsessed, visually masterful Haynes working in a frenetic energy, which he would largely turn over for a more restrained, subtle directing approach later in his career. —C.O.

    17) Carmen Jones 

    The great Otto Preminger had a long and varied career. The Austrian director is best known for taut thrillers like Angel Face, Bunny Lake Is Missing, and Laura, with the latter ranking among cinema’s greatest film noirs. (It’s certainly the best movie ever made about a guy who wants to pork a painting.) Carmen Jones, though, shows what a marvelously eclectic director Preminger could be. The film reimagines Bizet’s classic opera as a musical drama with a nearly all-black cast, which would still sadly be a landmark achievement today. Its success heralded the rise to stardom of Dorothy Dandridge, the first African-American woman ever nominated in the best picture category at the Oscars, as well as the remixing of genres that would later lead to the ‘70s blaxploitation era. The film remains so influential that Beyoncé remade it twice: both as a Super Bowl commercial and an MTV film. —N.L.

    18) Tell No One  

    The sophomore feature from French writer/director/actor Guillaume Canet, probably better known stateside as Marion Cotillard’s baby-daddy, Tell No One is the kind of sophisticated, Hitchcockian thriller they simply don’t make anymore—at least not in the U.S. Luckily, the French are there to pick up the slack. Starring François Cluzet and Kristin Scott Thomas (Four Weddings and a Funeral)—as flawless in French as the British actress is in English—the movie features a fairly straightforward take on the archetypal “wrong man” plot. However, there are enough shocking twists and turns along the way to keep even the most astute viewer guessing. And for anyone who thinks of foreign films as “boring” or “inaccessible,” Tell No One is the perfect blend of entertainment and intellect to change your mind. —C.O.

    19) The Guest

    Adam Wingard has carved out a niche for himself as the maestro of movies that shouldn’t work. First there was You’re Next, in which an Australian warrior woman makes mincemeat of a group of masked attackers. His movies are absurd yet absurdly entertaining, pitched at just the right level of camp. The Guest may prove the idiosyncratic director’s master stroke. In the horror-thriller, a soldier named David (Dan Stevens) visits the family of a fallen comrade to send his regrets. They invite him to stay. It slowly becomes clear, however, that David is not who he says he is. Stevens, best known for his stint on Downton Abbey, is a commanding presence on screen, and Wingard gets incredible mileage out of the film’s ‘80s-tinged aesthetic, reminiscent of Drive and Donnie Darko. Not everything in the movie works, but when The Guest gets the kitsch to creep ratio exactly right, the movie cuts deep. —N.L.

    20) We Need to Talk About Kevin  

    I know what you’re thinking: school shooting movie, pretty tough sell. Well, you’re not wrong. But We Need to Talk About Kevin is worth watching for how it subverts the genre. From the always bold Lynne Ramsay (Ratcatcher), the film tracks the relationship between Eva (Tilda Swinton) and her son, Kevin (Ezra Miller), from his birth to the incident in question. We Need to Talk About Kevin doesn’t pull its punches: Kevin is naturally disturbing and unsympathetic, and Eva is wary of him from a young age. Was Kevin always the way he was, or was it is mother’s inability to love him that made him that way? And more importantly, should Eva have been a mother to begin with? Some people aren’t meant to be parents. Those are the probing questions Ramsey asks in We Need to Talk About Kevin, ones made all the more haunting by a final scene where mother and son are forced to finally come together, having no one else left to turn to. —C.O.

    21) Queen of Earth  

    Alex Ross Perry does not make movies about people you would like to spend time with. His breakout feature, Listen Up Philip, is about a narcissistic writer (Jason Schwartzman) who spends the entire film alienating everyone. It’s a good film, acidic in its insights about human behavior, and his follow-up is even better. New Yorker film critic Anthony Lane called Queen of Earth a film for “anyone who thinks that there are too many warm hugs in Strindberg,” but that overestimates the movie’s tenderness. No one in Queen of Earth has even heard of a hug. Like Gena Rowlands before her, Elisabeth Moss plays Catherine, a woman on the edge of collapse. She used to work for her father, a famous artist, but he has passed away. During a retreat at a lake house, her relationship with her best friend, Virginia (Katherine Waterston), rapidly unravels as Catherine’s sanity slips away. Moss’s performance is as spellbinding as the movie. —N.L.

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    In the two years since it premiered, Last Week Tonight has enacted enough real-life changes from host John Oliver’s segments for Time to note a “John Oliver effect.”  And while Oliver may brush off the idea, the effect is very real for 9,000 people deep in medical debt.

    Prior to Sunday night’s episode, Oliver revealed that it would be longer than usual and that “it’s worth watching to the end to see why.”

    In the nearly 21-minute segment, Oliver explained the ins and outs of the broken and corrupt debt-collecting industry. People often fall into debt of no fault of their own, their information is often sold for pennies on the dollar, and collectors often harass them (and others in their lives) to pay it—even if the debt was already paid. They’re sometimes sued and taken advantage of because they don’t understand the legalese involved, and some in the industry don’t seem very interested in informing people of their rights. There’s a reason it receives more complaints than any other industry, according to the Federal Trade Commission.

    And it’s incredibly easy to get into the business.

    "It is pretty clear by now debt buying is a grimy business, and badly needs more oversight, because as it stands any idiot can get into it," Oliver said. "And I can prove that to you, because I'm an idiot, and we started a debt-buying company. And it was disturbingly easy."

    Oliver set up a barebones company and called it Central Asset Recovery Professionals, or CARP. “After the bottom-feeding fish,” Oliver noted. CARP purchased nearly $15 million in medical debt for under $60,000, and then he forgave it all in what he believed was the “largest one-time giveaway in television show history.” At $15 million, it’s nearly doubled what Oprah Winfrey gave away to fans with those cars.

    As he said before shouting “Fuck you, Oprah,” it’s the least he can do.

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    Every Korean pop band longs for the day that marks its success as a group of idols—the day its fandom grows large enough to warrant a name and an official color. It's a mark of success in the Korean entertainment world, a sort of confirmation that a group is on the road to greatness.

    Now, the adorable K-pop girl group Red Velvet has become the latest band to receive this honor. The group announced that its official color is coral pink.

    One might wonder why this is such a big deal, or why a band's official color or fandom name matters so much. In Korea, fans rely heavily on the pride of being part of a fandom; being able to represent your favorite band's official color by wearing the right color t-shirt or holding a light stick is very important. It's common to see seas of color at concerts as fans unite by holding up their band's color of choice.

    Not all bands participate in this tradition, but most popular bands do have a fandom name. Now Red Velvet has to choose its name, which is just as big of a deal for it as its color.

    Fandom names help a group's fans find each other on message boards, on Twitter, and even in person. It's easy to make a friend in a K-pop community by realizing you are fellow members of the same fandom.

    Red Velvet has seen continuous success since its 2014 debut, so it seems like the right time for the group to celebrate. Not only are they precious, but they favor talent and fun over the blatant sexuality that has seeped into the identities of so many other girl groups.

    Now let's hope these girls don't have to wait six years like f(x) did before coming up with a fandom name. Get on it, SM!

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    Paying your rent by selling homemade hooch? That's the premise of Under the Table, a new webseries debuting today via BitTorrent Bundle. 

    Three roommates living in Los Angeles—Riley (Cindy Chu), Ang (Maggie Monk), and Lisa (Michaela Myers)—hatch a plan to pay rent after it's discovered that the credit card scam Ang's involved in has been compromised. To lure in a younger generation of potential clients, they set up a an ill-advised Harry Styles kissing booth near a school. In another episode, Lisa advertises the hooch (and their home address) via YouTube, which invites the interest of the LAPD. 

    Series creators Lauren Davis, Andra Whipple, and Hanna Bowens all met while working at CollegeHumor, and like most great ideas, the seeds of Under the Table were planted at a bar. Davis says she and Whipple were "talking about lack of diversity and lack of opportunities for women who don't fit specific molds," and decided the world needed a series about "a bunch of idiots who brew their own hooch." 

    Why hooch? Davis went to school in Richmond, Virginia, where there is a legit moonshine culture. "There's something hard and visceral about moonshine," she says, and wanted the series to reflect that feeling. 

    Under the Table was crowdfunded last September on Indiegogo, and the description notes that they want to "help prove women aren't funny." Davis says this was around the time when Michael Eisner made public statements about how it's hard to find women who are funny and beautiful, and the funding of a webseries starring, created, directed, and written by women was a chance to poke holes in that particular misconception.  

    The five-episode series sticks to this focus. There are no romantic relationships—"the plot is pretty much driven by women's needs in their lives and how to survive, and their incompetence at doing so," Davis says. It's been compared to Broad City, and Davis thinks that show resonates with women and men because "it's honest, and captures the way we talk to each other, the way we view ourselves." 

    She adds that they partnered with BitTorrent because they support independent filmmakers, and the platform has been elbowing its way into livestreaming and original content. Missy Laney, who recently joined BitTorrent as director of creative initiatives from Sundance, says Under the Table is yet another flag planted in terms of representation: "Hanna, Lauren, and Andra are the latest in the line of comedic talents who are helping to authenticate portrayal of women in media." 

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    Seven teens were taken to the hospital and 21 more were treated on the scene after a Dolan Twins tour event got out of hand in Freehold, New Jersey this weekend.

    Two-thousand attended the kickoff of YouTubers Ethan and Grayson Dolan's 4ou tour at the iPlay America Event Center in Jersey. The 16-year-old duo, who have 2 million subscribers on YouTube, paused the show for an hour to help restore order. As they were in a non-seated venue, fans reportedly rushed the stage upon seeing them, crowding those camped out in the front. 

    They communicated with fans via Twitter to help the police.

    Freehold police treated 21 people at the scene, and seven were taken to local hospitals and treated for panic, anxiety, and breathing difficulty. 

    YouTubers and Vine stars often take their talents off the screen and into IRL events throughout the country. The Dolans are the latest in the trend, appearing onstage and conducting meet-and-greets for fans. 

    The iPlay Arena released a statement on Facebook explaining that after fans crowded the stage they asked guests to sit on the floor for the remainder of the show. There were no serious injuries.

    We reached out to the Dolan twins for comment and will update this story when they respond.


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    There are plenty of streaming services dedicated to replicating a TV-watching experience on our computers, tablets, and phones, but how do you market toward younger viewers who never grew up with traditional TV in the first place? 

    AT&T thinks it has the answer, and the telecommunications giant announced Monday that it will launch a new video subscription service with programming specifically geared toward younger viewers.

    According to Variety, the still-unnamed service will specialize in "anime, video games, niche action sports, and other fare off the beaten path." In other words, the kinds of video that Amazon, Hulu, and Netflix don't prioritize very highly. 

    Amazon launched a similar bundled video service for Prime members in late 2015 but with an emphasis on prestige programming from networks like Starz, A&E, and AMC. This new AT&T project hopes to appeal to a viewer who likes a less linear viewing experience. 

    San Francisco-based company Ellation is developing the product. Its claim to fame is Crunchyroll, a subscription-based anime video service that reportedly has more than 800,000 paid subscribers.

    Internally, the service is still being referred to as "Project X," though trademark registrations and URLs purchased by the companies suggest they're leaning toward calling the service Vrv. The name could reportedly be announced as soon as this month, and the platform could launch later this year. 

    AT&T also announced a more traditional streaming TV service earlier this year. 

    H/T Variety

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    Kimbo Slice, the former internet fighting sensation who went on to become a mixed martial arts star, died Monday night.

    Reports began filtering out Monday evening that Slice had been rushed to a Florida hospital with an unknown ailment, and by late Monday, there were unconfirmed reports that the 42-year-old had died. The Los Angeles Times confirmed Slice's passing late Monday night.

    "We are all shocked and saddened by the devastating untimely loss of Kimbo Slice, a beloved member of the Bellator family," Bellator MMA official Scott Coker said in a statement. "One of the most popular MMA fighters ever, Kimbo was a charismatic, larger-than-life personality that transcended the sport.

    "Outside of the cage he was a friendly, gentle giant, and a devoted family man. His loss leaves us all with extremely heavy hearts, and our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Ferguson family and all of Kimbo's friends, fans, and teammates."

    Slice, whose real name was Kevin Ferguson, made himself into an internet star in 2003 by destroying opponents in backyard fights that were uploaded to YouTube. He racked up millions of views with violent fights like this. And this.

    After making a name for himself online, Slice competed in minor-league MMA organizations like Elite XC and Bellator MMA while making a few appearances in UFC, the biggest and most-popular organization in the sport.

    One of his final fights came against faded MMA star Ken Shamrock, who seemed to be in control early in their 2015 match before Slice made a strong comeback to cement the final big-name victory of his career.

    And while Slice was never a great fighter—at least on a professional level—that doesn't mean he didn't bring plenty of value to the sport.

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    The Late Late Show host James Corden is preparing to host the Tony Awards on Sunday night, and what better way to get a feel for the gig than by recruiting some of Broadway’s best?

    First to join Corden for Carpool Karaoke is Hamilton creator and star Lin-Manuel Miranda. The duo jam out to “Alexander Hamilton” and “Guns and Ships,” and you better believe Corden can keep up with Lafayette’s speedy rapping.

    Soon enough, Audra McDonald, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, and Jane Krakowski join the car, offering Corden advice and belting out some of Broadway’s biggest hits over the years—in multi-part harmony, of course.

    They ended the whole thing with “One Day More” from Les Miserables while putting their own twist on it. And yes, it’s as magnificent as you think it is.

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    Justin Timberlake’s latest hit, "Can’t Stop The Feeling," already has more than 40 million streams on YouTube. It's a leading song of the summer, bolstered by its carefree, dance-heavy music video. 

    And if you watch, you'll see one self-taught street dancer who landed a spot in the video thanks to social media.

    Maceo Paisley, 30, started posting videos of himself dancing a little over a year ago. He says they caught the attention of Timberlake’s producers.

    “He called me up and was like ‘We got this secret project and it’s a professional gig and we would love to have you come out,’” Paisley tells the Daily Dot.

    Paisley, whose real name is Maceo Keeling, doesn’t have the largest following on social media—5,000-plus Twitter followers, 2,000 on Facebook—but he says a little luck goes a long way.

    “Compared to others in the dance community I have a very small audience, but it just so happens that it doesn’t always take much in order to get exposed. It’s like share your work and be in the right place at the right time,” Paisley says.

    He describes his style of dance as a unique street choreography with influences of hip-hop, tap, and South African Pantsula, a speedy footwork technique that emerged in the 1950s. Paisley says when he signed on to a dance agency shortly after arriving to L.A., he felt confined and pressured to fit into hip-hop.

    “I was kind of disenchanted with the dance world for a little after that,” Paisley says. But after parting ways with the dance agency, Paisley started to shift his focus to promoting his moves on social media.

    “I started doing a dance video almost every week on my own and that led to some people finding me and putting me on music videos,” Paisley says.

    He recently started using Flipagram where he also posted a tutorial video of the choreography in Timberlake’s video. It has more than 260,000 views a week into going live.

    Paisley says using Flipagram has generated larger audiences for his dance videos over other platforms like Instagram or YouTube. (For the uninitiated, Flipagram is a storytelling app that prides itself in offering users various ways to present photos and videos.)

    “I think that platform has a lot more people that are interested in dance and it’s a little less saturated than competing with someone’s awesome pictures of coffee cups,” Paisley says.

    Regardless of the social platform, he's on to something. Type in "Maceo Paisley" on Facebook and you’ll see that 48,000-plus people are talking about him. He's a dancer, army veteran, poet, musician, designer—a modern renaissance man. 

    Originally from Massachusetts, Paisley says his eclectic upbringing has everything to do with what he puts out to the world.

    “My parents played everything from Garth Brooks to Parliament and the Funkadelics, to Celine Dion. We had all of that bumping in the house,” Paisley says.

    He was never professionally trained as a dancer, but he taught himself how to dance in his apartment. “I would record myself dancing and watch it back,” he says.

    Paisley says working with Timberlake was an unexpected pleasure: “In between takes we were laughing and joking. He was keeping everyone entertained and high energy as if he were one of us.”

    And while Paisley enjoys watching his social media following blossom, he mostly wants to get people everywhere up and dancing. Right now he’s focusing on throwing parties—the kind where there are no backs against the wall.

    “I think there’s something cathartic and special about dance that is so unique to other art forms. You don’t need a paintbrush, you don’t need a microphone, you don’t need a drum set, you just need what you were born with,” Paisley says.

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    June 7 would have marked Prince's 58th birthday, and to honor his life and memory, Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has made a proclamation: Today is Prince Day. 

    Since his death on April 21, tributes and remembrances have filled the internet, though his albums were absent from most streaming sites, save for Tidal. Today the streaming platform, which previously hosted some 30 Prince albums, released 15 more, including rare gems The Black Album, Crystal Ball, and Chaos and Disorder

    In the week after his death, Prince's singles and albums sold more than 4 million copies. His relationship with streaming music sites and the internet was famously complicated, though with the discovery of a vault at his Paisley Park home, containing scores of unreleased music, we might have access to more Prince in the future. 

    In honor of this day, the Current will also be playing the top 58 Prince songs this afternoon, as voted by listeners. 

    H/T Stereogum 

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    YouTubers love a challenge, and recently YouTubers have loved drama with each other, so YouTuber Ryan Higa came up with a way to combine the two.

    As prominent YouTube stars like Pewdiepie and KSI have taken digital swings at each other in public lately, Higa has wanted to get in on the feud action too. One problem: He doesn't have a problem with anyone.

    "As much as I want to be a part of the whole drama scene, I don't want to fight with anyone," explains Higa in his most recent video. "Back in the day when I started, in 2005 and 2006, YouTubers didn't fight with each other. We all helped each other out."

    So Higa is lending a helpful content hand for YouTubers who don't have actual feuds. He suggests they beef with themselves, participating in his #RoastYourselfChallenege. 

    “The idea behind this challenge is basically to look at yourself as if you’re another person and then do exactly what the title says—roast yourself,” he explains. “Once you realize and call yourself out on your flaws, it’s a lot harder to make fun of someone else’s flaws.”

    Several big name stars have already taken the bait.

    As for Higa, he went with the rap battle roast—burning himself for being an Asian college dropout, losing a Teen Choice Award, and never being on Ellen. All solid burns for a YouTube celebrity, delivered from the guy who knows best.

    H/T Tubefilter

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    The band Good English is currently experiencing backlash after its drummer wrote a letter defending Stanford rapist Brock Turner. 

    Last Thursday, Turner was sentenced to just six months in jail for the sexual assault of an unconscious woman in January 2015, a sentence that fueled outrage on social media, especially when paired with his father's tone-deaf letter to Judge Aaron Persky, lamenting his son's well-being and future.  

    But another letter has been circulating. The Cut obtained the letter—part of a court probation report—penned by Turner's childhood friend Leslie Rasmussen, the drummer for Dayton, Ohio, trio Good English. It was reportedly also written to Judge Persky, and starts off by discussing what a "sweetheart" Brock was growing up. 

    Then it gets into the blame game. Rasmussen claims the woman was probably about to blackout from drinking, and was probably flirting with Turner. In a powerful and widely circulated letter, the woman assaulted by Turner highlighted how she wasn't allowed to tell her own story; Turner and his attorneys were writing the script for her. 

    She goes on:

    Brock is not a monster. He is the furthest thing from anything like that, and I have known him much longer than the people involved in his case. I don’t think it’s fair to base the fate of the next ten + years of his life on the decision of a girl who doesn’t remember anything but the amount she drank to press charges against him. I am not blaming her directly for this, because that isn’t right. But where do we draw the line and stop worrying about being politically correct every second of the day and see that rape on campuses isn’t always because people are rapists.

    The band's Facebook page has been disabled, as has its Twitter account. A Bandcamp still lists gigs for this weekend, though several have now been canceled. 

    It's dispiriting to see Rasmussen join in on the victim-blaming, especially when women in the music industry routinely face instances of harassment and abuse that often take years to come out, if they do at all—because of a culture of silencing and victim-blaming. One need only look at the wave of accusations against former music publicist Heathcliff Berru earlier this year to know that predatory behavior is often swept under the rug in the industry—allowing it to continue—and statements like "He's always been cool to me" or "He's always been a sweetheart" only shield abusers from repercussions or questioning. 

    We've reached out to the group for comment. 

    H/T Yahoo 

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    Meryl Streep may be famous for her range, but she's truly outdone herself with her latest role.

    The actor attended the 2016 Public Theater Gala on Monday night dressed as presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump—complete with his signature combover and facial tan lines. A large tie, oversize suit, and body padding completed her look.

    Streep paired up with Christine Baranski to sing a parody version of Cole Porter’s “Brush Up Your Shakespeare” for the audience, which means she delivered such lyrics as, “You’ll let me know, why all the women say no,” while in character.

    H/T New York Daily News

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    YouTube star Alexis G. Zall joins the prestigious club of successful YouTubers who have come out of the closet on their channels with her most recent video, "18 Tips for 18 Years."

    Other prominent YouTubers who have come out on their channels recently include Troye Sivan, Connor Franta, Ingrid Nelson, and Joey Graceffa. What sets Zall apart is that while many YouTubers make coming out the central point of video announcements, Zall included the info in her yearly birthday video as No. 8.

    “I'm about to get gay," she announces. "It is totally OK to be a girl who likes girls or a boy who likes boys. And me, personally, I am a girl who likes girls.” 

    Moving on from her sexuality, Zall shares her love for nail polish and about how she can be both pretty and smart, without discrediting either. It's a pretty typical clip by Zall, who usually speaks to her 1 million subscribers about trying new candy and testing as-seen-on-TV products. Her sexuality is just another factoid about her to share with her budding audience. (In fact, she hit 1 million subscribers the same day she posted her coming-out video.)

    Zall is getting support from her fellow creators and fans.

    H/T Tubefilter

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    Ricky Dillon has officially become the latest social media personality to release his own book. Dillon, known for his vlogs, musical career, and previous membership in YouTube supergroup Our2ndLife, has joined forces with Simon & Schuster’s Keywords Press imprint to publish Follow Me, a memoir that is now available from major retailers.

    Follow Me is described as “a memoir of challenges,” in reference to the challenge videos Dillon often posts on his YouTube channel. As he shares new challenges with his readers, Dillon also uses Follow Me to show what the day-to-day life of a social media star looks like.

    Dillon’s off-YouTube ventures have typically sold well (his debut EP RPD in particular was a big hit on iTunes), and Follow Me seems like it too will generate plenty of attention. On the day of its release, it began to make an impact on several of Amazon’s category-specific bestseller lists.

    Dillon will support the release of Follow Me with a book tour that will hit six cities in one week. The tour will begin June 8 in Birmingham, Alabama, and will conclude June 15 in Los Angeles. For details about those events and everything else related to Follow Mecheck out the book’s official website.

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