review maniac

Editor’s Note: Our review of Maniac originally ran as part of this year’s inaugural Stanley Film Fest coverage, but we’re re-running it now as the opens in limited theatrical release and premieres on VOD starting June 21st. Frank (Elijah Wood) is a lonely small business owner looking for love in all the wrong places. Sure, he meets a few girls through online dating services, but none of them work out beyond the first date. Though to be fair to the women, the evenings only go sour around the point Frank decides to scalp them for not living up to his dead mother’s high standards. His life gets a jolt and a singular chance at happiness when a photographer named Anna (Nora Arnezeder) stops by his mannequin restoration shop and asks a favor. The two develop a friendship, perhaps the first Frank has known is his life, and he begins to fall for her. It’s the closest thing to real love he’s ever felt and she’s the closest to redemption that he’ll ever get. But happiness just isn’t in the cards for Frank, and the pull of the knife begins again. This is Maniac, and not only is it one of the best serial killer films in years, but it’s also one of the most beautiful, creative and affecting ones, too.


Channel Guide - Large

The premise of the new CBS sitcom ¡Rob! is only interesting if you’ve never heard of Fools Rush In or Guess Who or the Meet the Parents trilogy or perhaps if these are the only movies that you’ve ever truly enjoyed. After a six-week courtship, Rob (Rob Schneider) has eloped with Maggie (Claudia Bassols), having never met her mother and father. Being introduced to the in-laws under these circumstances would probably be distressing for most people but it is particularly so here because Maggie is Mexican-American and Rob…isn’t. Awk-ward! What’s worse, Rob is apparently unable to have a normal conversation with someone whose ethnic background is different than his. “I’m a huge fan of Mexican culture,” he says, trying to endear himself to his father-in-law Fernando (Cheech Marin). He continues: “This dip is excellent. I believe it’s called guacamole.” Was this the kind of woo he was pitching when he first met Maggie?


Channel Guide: A Column About TV

Ah, the television midseason. By now, the public has decided which new shows they’ll stick with (Revenge, 2 Broke Girls, New Girl), which they’re unsure about (Pan Am, Prime Suspect, Once Upon a Time) and which aren’t even worth thinking about (The Playboy Club, Free Agents). There’s little chance that if something hasn’t become appointment viewing by now, it’s worth cancelling the DVR season pass. So while we’re all finally getting over the tragedy that was Charlie’s Angels, the network bigwigs are using their highly-representative sample (comprised, one can only imagine, of elderly people, religious zealots, and the entirety of the state of West Virginia) to determine just what they’ll throw at us next. Sure, some of the best shows have been birthed out of a midseason replacement (ahem, Happy Endings, ahem), but the pickings are often more than slim – shows the networks don’t often find strong enough to debut with their fellow newbies in the fall. So what will we have to look forward to (or to run away from) in our TV Guide in the coming weeks? Sure, PBS will kick off the second season of critical and ratings darling Downton Abbey January 8th, while NBC’s 30 Rock is back January 12th. Cee-Lo Green will once again be gracing our television screens with The Voice’s post-Superbowl premiere, and Timothy Olyphant will be emanating his rugged swagger on Justified once more, as the lawman drama kicks off its third season January 17th. But what of the newly minted […]

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published: 12.17.2014
published: 12.15.2014
published: 12.12.2014
published: 12.05.2014

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