Kristen Schaal

For its first  sequel, the newly-minted Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs franchise has decided to take things in a slightly different (and tastier) direction. Instead of putting Flint Lockwood (voice of Bill Hader) and his lovely lady Sam Sparks (Anna Faris) back into harm’s (meatball’s?) way in another town besieged by giant food, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2 has organically grown its fresh story, piling on to the logic of the first film in a clever new way. In the new film, Flint has joined The Live Corp Company, run by his idol Chester V (Will Forte) and his “highly evolved orangutan with a human brain” Barb (Kristen Schaal), and he’s happily working away, unaware that his disaster-prone FLDSMDFR machine is actually still running, and it’s evolved quite spectacularly. The FLDSMDFR is now churning out food-animal hybrids, food-imals, and as totally adorable as some of them may be (seriously, they’re cute), not all of them are just around to be squishy-cute (like the tacodiles probably!), and they’re taking over Flint’s island hometown of Swallow Falls. USA Today got the exclusive on some adorable new images (via ComingSoon) of some of the food-imals in the new film, which you can check out after the break. While they are all both cute and inventive, if we had to choose a favorite, it’s easily those pudgy, butter-tongued baked potato hippos (they are called, wait for it, Hippotatomus). Good God, those things are charming. There are also delicious looks at Bananostrich, Cantalope, […]

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Channel Guide - Large

Bob’s Burgers creator Loren Bouchard and his crew have come up with—hands down—the most captivatingly strange sitcom on network TV. Now in its third season and having recently been picked up for a fourth, the Emmy-nominated animated series is the gem of Fox’s Sunday night cartoon block. What’s more, its continued existence may be a sign that the network has finally turned a corner when it comes to canceling shows with cult followings. Bob’s Burgers revolves around the Belchers—swarthy Bob (H. Jon Benjamin), his supportive wife Linda (John Roberts), and their three equally but distinctly quirky children, Tina (Dan Mintz), Gene (Eugene Mirman), and Louise (Kristen Schaal). They own a burger joint that does okay business (and have an apartment above the restaurant, making them one of the few TV families with an economically realistic living situation). While there are some basic similarities between Bob’s Burgers and the rest of the Animation Domination shows (they’re all cheeky or irreverent and primarily about eccentric nuclear families), the tone and style here are almost jarring next to the raucous abrasiveness of the Seth MacFarlane toons and the silly wit of The Simpsons.

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Jennifer Garner in Butter

Editor’s note: With Butter finally hitting theaters tomorrow, here’s a re-run of our AFI FEST review, originally published on November 8, 2011, to spread all over your movie theater popcorn. Jim Field Smith’s Butter has been packaged and sold as its own consumable commodity – as some sort of smart, politically-minded satire. Butter is certainly funny in spats, but smart satire it is not, as there are no hard lessons taught or learned within the film. It may be too easy to say that Butter goes soft by its end – but the wording works here, both in terms of a mildly clever food pun and as an actual critique of how the film flip-flops with its tone and message before settling on an easy conclusion. The world of competitive butter-carving is hilarious and bizarre, a fine setting for a straight comedy that culminates with a character incredulously summing up its ridiculousness – “you put it on toast!” – but everything in Smith’s film is just too obvious to transcend basic laughs.

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Channel Guide: A Column About TV

Because I have the sleeping habits of a 75-year-old golden girl, I rarely stay up past 11:00 pm (sometimes even 9:00 is pushing it). But I’m more than willing to cast aside my senior citizen bedtime if it means that I get to watch The Heart, She Holler—Adult Swim’s latest foray into live-action comedy. This twisted six-part miniseries, starring Patton Oswalt and Bob’s Burgers’ Kristen Schaal, is a hodgepodge of Lynchian surrealism, Southern Gothic melodrama, and absurdist humor. Although Adult Swim is known for its incendiary programming, The Heart, She Holler, which first aired earlier this month, is arguably the most subversive and definitely the most disturbingly funny live-action comedy currently on the network (and who would expect anything less from a show produced by PFFR, the company behind Wonder Showzen?).

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You wouldn’t think it possible, considering the fact that Pixar has recently taken us to the deep space with Wall-E and to the far reaches of Earth in Up, but I have a feeling that Toy Story 3 might be their biggest adventure yet.

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published: 04.17.2014
D+
published: 04.17.2014
B-
published: 04.16.2014
B+
published: 04.16.2014
C-

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