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1. Godzilla* (Warner Bros.)

2. Captain America: The Winter Soldier (Disney)

3. Blended* (Warner Bros.)

4. Brick Mansions* (20th Century Fox)

5. The Fault in Our Stars* (20th Century Fox)

6. Think Like a Man Too (Sony)

7. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (Sony)

8. The Other Woman (20th Century Fox)

9. Moms' Night Out (Sony)

10. Draft Day (Lionsgate)

* Available for rental before Redbox and Netflix

Published in Video Top 10

1. Blended* (Warner Bros.)

2. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (Sony)

3. Oculus (20th Century Fox)

4. The Other Woman (20th Century Fox)

5. Need for Speed (Touchstone)

6. Draft Day (Lionsgate)

7. A Haunted House 2 (Universal)

8. Moms' Night Out (Sony)

9. Heaven Is for Real (Sony)

10. Divergent (Lionsgate)

* Available for rental before Redbox and Netflix

Published in Video Top 10

1. Blended* (Warner Bros.)

2. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (Sony)

3. The Other Woman (20th Century Fox)

4. Divergent (Lionsgate)

5. A Haunted House 2* (Universal)

6. Oculus (20th Century Fox)

7. Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return* (20th Century Fox)

8. The Quiet Ones (Lionsgate)

9. Rage (Image)

10. A Good Man (Lionsgate)

* Available for rental before Redbox and Netflix

Published in Video Top 10

1. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (Sony)

2. The Other Woman (20th Century Fox)

3. A Haunted House 2* (Universal)

4. Divergent (Lionsgate)

5. Need for Speed (Disney)

6. God's Not Dead (Pure)

7. Noah (Paramount)

8. Rage (Image)

9. Oculus* (20th Century Fox)

10. The Quiet Ones (Lionsgate)

* Available for rental before Redbox and Netflix

Published in Video Top 10

1. Divergent (Lionsgate)

2. Need for Speed (Disney)

3. A Haunted House 2* (Universal)

4. Oculus* (20th Century Fox)

5. Noah (Paramount)

6. Sabotage (Universal)

7. The Other Woman* (20th Century Fox)

8. Heaven Is for Real (Sony)

9. God's Not Dead (Pure)

10. Rage (Image)

* Available for rental before Redbox and Netflix

Published in Video Top 10

1. Divergent (Lionsgate)

2. Noah (Paramount)

3. Heaven Is for Real (Sony)

4. The Other Woman* (20th Century Fox)

5. Need for Speed (Disney)

6. Oculus* (20th Century Fox)

7. Sabotage* (Universal)

8. God's Not Dead (Pure)

9. Rio 2 (20th Century Fox)

10. Transcendence* (Warner Bros.)

* Available for rental before Redbox and Netflix

Published in Video Top 10

1. Noah (Paramount)

2. Rio 2* (20th Century Fox)

3. The Other Woman* (20th Century Fox)

4. Sabotage* (Universal)

5. Heaven Is for Real (Sony)

6. Transcendence* (Warner Bros.)

7. Cesar Chavez (Lionsgate)

8. 300: Rise of an Empire (Warner Bros.)

9. Bad Words (Focus)

10. Non-Stop (Universal)

* Available for rental before Redbox and Netflix

Published in Video Top 10

The Only TV Column That Matters™ has seen the glory of Syfy’s Sharknado 2: The Second One (premiering Wednesday, July 30) in advance and can definitively report that it’s even more ridiculous than 2013’s surprise … hit? … Sharknado.

This time around, the chompy tsunami hits New York City, and it’s up to Ian Ziering and Tara Reid—as well as Kari Wuhrer, Mark McGrath, Vivica A. Fox and a seemingly endless parade of other guest stars who’ve probably since fired their agents—to shut down the SharkDown. It may be cheesier than an overturned truck of Doritos Loaded in a 7-Eleven parking lot, but Sharknado 2 isn’t entirely predictable—let’s pre-test your pre-knowledge of The Second One:

1. Even though he’s famously battled one before, nobody believes Fin Shepard (Ziering) when he initially warns of a Sharknado hitting NYC because:

A. It sounds like a bad Syfy movie.

B. He thinks the best pizza in Noo Yawk is made by Biz Markie.

C. How can you trust the judgment of someone who’d re-marry Tara Reid?

D. You can’t tell New Yorkers anything.

2. The movie’s catchy, Ramones-y theme song (yes, it has a theme song) features the lyrics:

A. “Stay away from Central Park / You’ll get your ass bit by a freakin’ shark.”

B. “So damn much trouble we’re in / So ironic our hero’s name is Fin.”

C. “Teeth are raining from the sky / ’Scuse me while I kiss this guy.”

D. “Go, go, go, go, go, go, go! / We’re all gonna die in a Sharknado!”

3. At the beginning of Sharknado 2, Tara Reid loses:

A. Her ability to create even the most basic facial expressions.

B. Any trace of acting talent she may have, arguably, once possessed.

C. Half of her screen time (and probably salary) to Kari Wuhrer.

D. Her left hand.

4. Of the movie’s many B-celeb cameos, the least convincing are:

A. Robert Hays (Airplane!) as an airline pilot and Judd Hirsch (Taxi) as a cab driver.

B. Billy Ray Cyrus and “Downtown” Julie Brown as a doctor and nurse.

C. Andy Dick as an NYPD cop and pro wrestler Kurt Angle as an NYFD fire chief.

D. The Today Show’s Matt Lauer and Al Roker as newscasters.

5. Co-star Mark McGrath, who gets an inexplicable amount of screen time, used to sing in the band and host the TV show:

A. Smash Mouth and Entertainment Tonight.

B. The Spin Doctors and Access Hollywood.

C. 98 Degrees and To Catch a Predator.

D. Sugar Ray and Extra.

6. The guy who wrote Sharkado and Sharknado 2 is actually named:

A. Cyclone Jones.

B. Lightning Lebowitz.

C. Avalanche Johansson.

D. Thunder Levin.

7. In addition to Sharknado 2, Syfy will also soon roll out the new monster flick:

A. Meta Shark vs. Twitter Critter.

B. DinoWeasel vs. SharkAardvark.

C. Mega Shark vs. Mecha Shark.

D. Sharktopus vs. Pteracuda.

8. Beside the whole sharks-sucked-up-into-a tornado thing, the most unbelievable part of The Second One is:

A. Ian Ziering flying through the sky with a chainsaw, hacking up sharks.

B. Tara Reid’s character was scheduled to appear on Live! With Kelly and Michael (who also appear) to promote a book she wrote.

C. Said “book,” titled How to Survive a Sharknado, looks all of 50 pages long.

D. A packed stadium for a Mets game.

Answers: 1: D. 2: D. 3: D. 4: D. 5: D. 6: D. 7: C and D. 8: B, C and D.


DVD ROUNDUP FOR JULY 29!

1 Chance 2 Dance

When a teen girl (Lexi Giovagnoli) is uprooted to a new, East Coast high school in her senior year, she’s torn between two boys and her One Last Shot at becoming a dancer. How many previous shots she’s had at the old age of 17 remains unclear. (Monarch)

Cuban Fury

Speaking of dancing: 20 years after his career as a champion salsa dancer traumatically ended, Bruce (Nick Frost) faces down his demons and gets back on the dance floor to win over a woman (Rashida Jones). See? It’s not over at 17. (eOne)

Mystery Science Theater 3000 XXX

In Vol. 30 (!), Joel, Mike and the ’bots suffer through terrible flicks The Black Scorpion, Outlaw of Gor, The Projected Man and It Lives By Night—episodes that span the Comedy Central and Sci-Fi Channel (not Syfy) years. (Shout! Factory)

Noah

Before a flood overtakes the planet, God tells Noah (Russell Crowe) to build an ark and save the animals because humans suck (as true now as it was then). A poignant family drama based on a true/fake story from an old book/the Bible. (Paramount)

The Other Woman

A wife (Leslie Mann), a mistress (Cameron Diaz) and a younger mistress (Kate Upton) plot revenge against the man (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) who’s been three-timing them all. Also starring Nicki Minaj’s ass, which should get its own movie. (Fox)

More New DVD Releases (July 29)

The Amazing Catfish, Amber Alert: Terror on the Highway, Big Losers, Cold Turkey, The Den, Dragonwolf, Five Dances, The French Minister, Frontline: United States of Secrets, Half of a Yellow Sun, It Felt Like Love, The Protector 2, Secret State, Tennessee Queer.

Published in TV

Leslie Mann is one of my favorite comic actresses, and I’ve been waiting for her to get a project that would put her over the top as one of Hollywood’s go-to actresses. I thought This Is 40 would do the trick, but I was probably the only guy in the world who thought that was a good movie.

Now comes The Other Woman, a film that casts her as a wimpy victim of her cheating husband, Mark (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau). She winds up befriending Carly, his mistress (Cameron Diaz), and she becomes a stronger, independent person as the film progresses.

Whatever.

Director Nick Cassavetes is trying for a straight comedy here, and things work well enough for at least half of the movie. Mann is at her pathetic best while stalking Diaz’s character, crying on her doorstep with Boston Market food in hand as a peace offering, and a big Great Dane in tow. I enjoyed this film in its early stages, thinking it might be the showcase Mann deserved.

Then The Other Woman crashed into a creative wall. I’m not sure about the precise moment when the film goes off the rails. Maybe it’s when yet another mistress, played by Kate Upton, enters the film, and the women start working together to torture and destroy the cheater. Mind you, I am all for a movie in which a cheater gets his comeuppance—just not when one of the revenge-seekers is played by the beautiful but bland Kate Upton.

Or maybe it’s the moment when Carly pours a bunch of laxative into Mark’s drink at dinner, and he proceeds to not only crap his pants, but have a bathroom-stall catastrophe similar to the one Jeff Daniels suffered through in Dumb and Dumber. Daniels made his fecal apocalypse high art. Coster-Waldau makes his feel like plagiarism.

Cassavetes has made some good movies in the past, including She’s So Lovely, with Penn and Travolta, and The Notebook, which gets credit for devastating movie viewers all over the world. The Notebook and, to a lesser extent, My Sister’s Keeper (also with Diaz) show Cassavetes’ talent for making people weep. However, The Other Woman shows that he can also make moviegoers groan. Tonally, the film is all over the place, as if he set out to make a raunchy comedy, and then decided to retreat into PG-13 territory. Indeed, I caught a major moment in which Diaz is clearly over-dubbed while screaming the big f-word. Maybe Cassavetes set out to make a much uglier film, and the studio stepped in and said, “Clean it up!”

By the time near the film’s end when Coster-Waldau’s character smashed his nose, and blood was squirting out of his face, it had ceased being funny and had become a total mess. Not even the mighty Mann’s expert mugging could pull it out of the fire.

The Other Woman was a minor hit at the box office during its opening weekend, so maybe its success will get some decent scripts in front of the talented Mann. It’s hard to watch her in this sort of squalor.

The Other Woman is playing at theaters across the valley.

Published in Reviews