Archive | Canadian TV

An archive of blog entries about Canadian TV programmes and production.


July 17, 2015

What have you been watching? Including X-Men: DOFP (Rogue Cut), The Equalizer and The Last Ship

Posted on July 17, 2015 | comments | Bookmark and Share

It's "What have you been watching?", my chance to tell you what movies and TV I’ve been watching recently that I haven't already reviewed and your chance to recommend things to everyone else (and me) in case I've missed them.

The usual "TMINE recommends" page features links to reviews of all the shows I've ever recommended, and there's also the Reviews A-Z, for when you want to check more or less anything I've reviewed ever. And if you want to know when any of these shows are on in your area, there’s Locate TV - they’ll even email you a weekly schedule.

I’ve had a heavy workload this week, which is why my output has slightly dwindled to a mere two TV reviews:

Sorry about that. But I have been managing to squeeze in some viewing, so after the jump, I’ll be looking at the latest episodes of: Ballers, Dark Matter, Glitch, Halt and Catch Fire, Humans, The Last Ship, Mr Robot, Stitchers, Strike Back: Legacy, Suits, True Detective, UnREAL, and The Whispers. Two of these I’ll be dropping from the viewing queue. Can you guess which ones, Tigers?

Hannibal’s been shunted to Saturdays in the US, by the way, so that’ll have to wait until next Friday now.

I’ve also watched a couple of movies.

The Equalizer (2014) (Now TV)
Denzel Washington reunites with Training Day director Antoine Fuqua for this adaptation of the famous Edward Woodward 80s TV series. Washington is Robert McCall a former CIA agent who retires after promising his deceased wife that he would stop doing the bad things. However, when a child prostitute (Chloe Grace Moretz in little more than a 10-minute cameo) is beaten up by her Russian pimp and Washington exacts revenge, everything escalates as he has to take on mob fixer Martin “I may be a Hungarian-New Zealander but I’ll play any other nationality” Csokas (Rogue, The Bourne Supremacy, Falcón).

There’s not a huge resemblance between this and the original TV series, with the whole movie essentially being the origin story that the pilot episode briefly touched on, it, too, setting up a potential franchise at the end. But surprisingly there’s not much action or even espionage work, to replace the episode-long drawn out violent politicking of the original series. Indeed, we bet the occasional shootout and fight scene and a series of incidents to which Washington presents fait accompli solutions to everyone’s problems.

Not an awful movie, though, there’s a certain degree of intelligence in the script and Washington makes for a very stoic lethal old buffer. But a disappointment for both action fans and fans of the original series. There’s not even a Rolls Royce in it.

X-Men: Days of Future Past: Rogue Cut (2014/5) (iTunes)
Not technically a new film at all, as I’ve already seen and watched the cinema release, but this new cut of the movie promised an entirely new sub-plot involving Rogue that had been excised from the original for running time. This version gives us just a few early additions in the first 90 minutes – a line here, a brief extra scene there – but is otherwise much the same as before. It’s not until towards the end that we get the big additions, and there is indeed an entire new sub-plot that gets added involving rescuing Rogue so that she can take over from Kitty. Everything makes a little more sense as a result and it’s interesting to see they must have refilmed certain scenes as some of the Rogue material conflicts with the cinema cut.

However, to be honest, it’s not that much extra, the extra plot was obviously only in it to crowbar Rogue into the movie, and its excision was no great loss as it all feels a lot slower as a result of the addition. So save your pennies, unless you’ve not seen the original but particularly if you were thinking of buying it on iTunes, as the promised two hours of additional material has so far been a no-show, thanks to an Apple cock-up.

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July 9, 2015

News: More Between, Rectify, Brittas Empire, Sapphire and Steel, a The Machine series + more

Posted on July 9, 2015 | comments | Bookmark and Share

Film casting

Film trailers

Australian TV

International TV

Internet/Canadian TV

UK TV

New UK TV shows

New UK TV show casting

US TV

New US TV shows

New US TV show casting

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July 6, 2015

Third-episode verdict: Killjoys (Canada: Space; US: Syfy)

Posted on July 6, 2015 | comments | Bookmark and Share

BarrometerKilljoys.jpgA Barrometer rating of 5

In Canada: Fridays, some time or other, Space
In the US: Fridays, 9/8c, Syfy
In the UK: Not yet acquired

I said on Friday that I was quitting Killjoys but I had some spare time on Saturday so I thought I’d give it one last chance. I really should have followed my own advice, since although episode three was marginally better than its predecessors, that still didn’t lift the show into the heady realms of ‘average’, let alone ‘good’.

The show is about as generic as it comes, seeing three ‘killjoys’ (bounty hunters) who work for the RAC (ha ha ha!) having to chase after criminals in outer space, usually with some shooting or fighting involved. The first episode introduced us to the three killjoys - well, technically two killjoys at that point (Hannah John-Kaman and Aaron Ashmore) who are joined by Ashmore’s soldier-boy brother with PTSD Luke Macfarlane. Episode two then gave us a bonding exercise between the three that ended with Mafarlane being recruited to the killjoys in lieu of a proper job, with episode three being his first ‘mission’.

All the time, they bicker and squabble with each other, either suggestively or like siblings, depending on the pairings.

And that’s about it. John-Kaman has ‘raised from birth to be an assassin' secrets she’s keeping from the others; Macfarlane has ‘I was in a secret war’ secrets he’s keeping from the others; Ashmore just wishes people would take him seriously.

To its credit, Killjoys tries very hard to world-build and create an SF society on the four worlds in its solar system. Trouble is it’s still very, very boring and its action sequences are hopelessly generic. Although they all have a certain je ne sais quoi, the leads take it in turn to pass round the acting talent between episodes, yet it’s never quite enough to fill any of them up to the brim.

By the end of it, you probably won’t care what anyone’s secrets are and you might as well just watch Guardians of the Galaxy instead.

Barrometer rating: 5
TMINE prediction: Cancelled by the end of the season at the latest

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