Archive | French TV

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


July 4, 2016

What have you been watching? Including Spotless, 19-2, American Gothic, Preacher and Outcast

Posted on July 4, 2016 | 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. 

Yep, Monday again. So much for those grand "Friday or over the weekend" ambitions. Still, given I'm away on Friday, and Game of Thrones, Silicon Valley and Secret City have all now finished, the task isn't so insurmountable, so maybe Monday ain't so bad.

Elsewhere, I've reviewed the first two episodes of Queen of the South (US: USA Network) and passed a third-episode verdict on BrainDead (US: CBS; UK: Amazon). I didn't get round to watching the megachurch-tastic Greenleaf (US: OWN), I'm afraid, because it looked dull, soapy and full of Oprah Winfrey. A preview of The Night Of… (US: HBO; UK: Sky Atlantic) will be coming at some point this week, I hope, although given it's an adaptation of BBC One's Criminal Justice, I'm not 100% psyched for it. I'm also halfway through "stupid teens at 80s summer camp" horror The Dead of Summer, so I'll hopefully be reviewing that this week, too. And given that Amazon released the first two episodes of Showtime's Roadies today, I might give them a stab, too.

That means that after the jump, I'll only be taking a look at the latest episodes of 19-2, American Gothic, The Last Ship, Outcast, Preacher and Silicon Valley, as well as last week's Secret City. Netflix also dumped season two of Marco Polo in our laps on Friday, but I haven't watched any of that yet, I'm afraid. Again, not 100% psyched for it and it sounds like there may be even more historical liberties taken this season than there were last.

But also on Friday, Netflix gave us…

Spotless (France: Canal+; UK: Netflix)
Frenchman Marc-André Grondin runs a crime-scene clean-up company in London, but is falling on hard times. Then his wayward brother Denis Ménochet (Inglorious Basterds) turns up with a dead drugs mule in his camper van freezer, and soon Grondin's financial luck is changing for the better, even if does mean he's working for criminals to clean up their dirty work.

It's a very curious affair - a French/British co-production with two French leads playing two French brothers who never speak a word of French to each other, even when they're alone, except in flashback to when they were kids and saving their mother from their murderous father. Seemingly a drama at first, albeit a terribly written drama with some terrible dialogue, it becomes a comedy-drama by the end of the first episode and almost enjoyable. Almost.

Nevertheless, despite being written by a Brit and clearly filmed by people who aren't content simply to show the tourist parts of London, there's a distinct lack of reality to any of it and Grondin's character is irritating and stupid. Running out of cash? Maybe you shouldn't try to send your kids to private school while living in a huge house in central London, just as all your contracts are suspended. 

It's already been renewed for a second season by Canal+ and the Esquire Network in the US, but unless episode two is significantly better, I won't be watching the rest of it.

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June 30, 2016

News: Netflix's Lost in Space remake; Preacher, 12 Monkeys renewed; Canal+ revamps; + more

Posted on June 30, 2016 | comments | Bookmark and Share

Internet TV

French TV

New UK TV shows

  • BBC One green lights: Rochdale grooming drama Three Girls, with Maxine Peake, Lesley Sharp, Paul Kaye et al

US TV

US TV show casting

New US TV shows

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June 27, 2016

What have you been watching? Including Game of Thrones, 19-2, Le Bureau Des Légendes (The Bureau) and Zoolander 2

Posted on June 27, 2016 | 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. 

State of the country, politics, the world, et al right now:

Sob. Oh well, let's talk about tele to try to cheer ourselves up. Last week, I reviewed the first few episodes of:

However, a few new shows have also stuck their heads up the parapets this week, so in the next few days I'm hoping to review Greenleaf (US: OWN), Queen of the South (US: USA) and maybe The Night Of (US: HBO) - it's only a mini-series.

Obviously, this was supposed to go up over the weekend, but owing to post-referendum blues and a general desire to boxset a certain French TV show, that didn't happen. However, I haven't had time to watch anything more than Game of Thrones from last night's usual bumper crop of shows. So after the jump, I'll be talking about that, the latest episodes of more or less the only shows that don't air on a Sunday - BrainDead, Cleverman and Outcast last Sunday's Preacher, Secret City, Silicon Valley, Still The King and Westside, as well as the return of Canada's good show, 19-2, and the whole of season 1 of Le Bureau Des Légendes (The Bureau). Some are for a-chopping, though, and some are on a lifeline.

(For those of you wondering, I couldn't be bothered to watch episode 3 of Animal Kingdom or Uncle Buck, after their uninspiring performances last week. Soz)

But first, a movie!

Zoolander 2 (2016) (iTunes)
Sequel to everyone's favourite Ben Stiller movie, although it only became such once it came out on DVD, since it tanked a bit at the box office. It sees Stiller, Own Wilson, Will Ferrell, et al, returning as their original characters, who have all gone their separate ways after Derek's school collapsed just a couple of days after opening. Then incomprehensible fashion designer Alexanya Atoz (Kristen Wiig) invites them to star in her new fashion show in Rome, and they're soon imbroiled in a Da Vinci Code parody that sees the likes of Justin Bieber being killed off to protect a terrible, terrible secret, with fashion policewoman Penelope Cruz their ally in solving the crime.

I was a bit wary of this, since it got bad reviews, and the movie itself is really not much more than that Da Vinci Code twist on the original Zoolander structure. However, surprisingly, it's actually quite gigglesome, with plenty of laughable moments, huge numbers of odd cameos (Kiefer Sutherland, Susan Sarandon, Fred Armisen, Anna Wintour et al), references to everything from Dune to Star Wars and the general surrealism that pervaded the original still managing to percolate through. 

Very stupid, but cheered us up a lot on Friday.

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