Even when it’s at its best, modern SNL is rarely shocking. Funny, strange, silly and clever, sure. But shocking? Nah. The show doesn’t seem to set out to offend every week. So when the show broke out a fake commercial that depicted 50 Shades of Grey star and guest host Dakota Johnson joining the radical terrorist group ISIS, jaws rightfully hit the ground. Who approved this? And could they start approving more sketches?
With Dakota Johnson guest hosting, last night’s SNL had no shortage of 50 Shades of Grey jokes. For her part, Johnson seemed equally bemused and embarrassed by her controversial new hit, rolling with whatever the show threw at her and always coming out looking far better than her naysayers expected. Her ability to make fun of herself and the film that has turned her into an overnight movie star really came together in the only sketch of the night that required her to play herself.
Modern SNL has one of the strongest female line-ups in the show’s history, so it’s always a pleasure when the writers give this group of extremely funny ladies a chance to shine together. This sketch is a weird one because it feels like such an odd and specific concept that must have been a real pain in the butt to pitch in the writer’s room, but the execution is simply sublime: a group of women start being brutally honest with the people in their lives and immediately celebrate to the impossibly catchy sounds of Sara Bareilles’ “Brave.”
Congratulations are in order for Scarlett Johansson, who is expecting her first child with fiance Romain Dauriac. (We hope you have a happy, healthy child that will never be bothered by parasitic paparazzi with no respect for your privacy.) However, with basic human decency out of the way, one of the biggest questions on the minds of Marvel fans is, how will this joyous news affect production on 'The Avengers 2,' set to begin later this year?
A few months ago, we learned that the terrific Thomas Kretschmann was joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe as supervillain Baron von Strucker (though Marvel refrained from acknowledging it) and we immediately assumed his appearance in 'The Avengers 2' would be a one-and-done performance. Now, a new interview with the actor reveals that, in true Marvel fashion, Kretschmann actually signed on for multiple films and his monocled baddie will continue to threaten the Avengers and their allies in the years to come.
Every Oscar night has its fair share of dramatic and moving moments, but nothing ever comes close to the "In Memoriam" segment, which honors the actors, actresses, writers, directors, producers and technicians who passed away in the past year. Just when you think you've gotten over the death of a talent who truly mattered to you, this portion of the show rears its head and tears your heart open all over again.
As frustrating as it was for an already long ceremony to pause for a seemingly unnecessary musical number, all was immediately forgiven when Pink took to the 2014 Oscars stage to perform a rendition of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" as part of a 'Wizard of Oz' tribute. Sure, that iconic musical fantasy may have nothing to do with anything happening in or around the broadcast, but does anyone really need a reason to celebrate one of the greatest films ever made?
The 2014 Oscars, hosted by Ellen DeGeneres, started off with a bang. The comedienne, who previously hosted seven years ago, took the stage and immediately made it her own. Like any host worth her salt, she took the material given to her and blended it with her own specific persona, giving the telecast a gentle and amusing start.
This weekend saw a brutal showdown between Liam Neeson, the current god of action cinema, and Jesus Christ, the current god of millions of human beings. Since the box office is a "two may enter, but only one may leave" type showdown, the victory ultimately went to Mr. Neeson and 'Non-Stop,' which edged out the son of God and his movie, uh, 'Son of God' to win the weekend.
Everyone can agree that child actors are generally unbearable and drag down otherwise good movies. So what happens when you recast this year's Oscar nominees with a bunch of wooden, smiling and occasionally barely coherent kids? You get the Spotlightz! acting camp, which recreates some of the past year's most acclaimed films in unspeakably awful ways. Thanks for that, 'SNL.'
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