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There are some movies which are famous and wide-spread only through the weekend of the premiere. They are pointless, useless and stupid. Most often, these movies are comedies. But there are some comedies which are not entirely comedies. There are stories about love and disgrace, hatred and forgiveness, and all these in disguise if a sift and light summer comedy. The Way Way Back is a story of reincarnation, even in such a short time and under such comical circumstances, always touch to depth of soul. It is unlikely that a summer at an Aqua park and several new acquaintances can abruptly change human’s life. However, this is precisely what happens in the The Way Way Back. And it is portrayed so normal and fine-looking, that not to believe it is simply impossible. The studio which brought us once such heartwarming stories as Juno and Little Miss Sunshine is about to restore our faith in humanity one more time. This summer comes yet another one life-affirming, gentle, a little clumsy, but nevertheless charming comedy Way Way Back. It might seem that nothing could be said more about the beauty of the human soul in the guise of an extremely awkward shell and the importance of genuine values than it already has been said, but there are many possible points of view. This time, the point of view belongs to a socially-awkward teenager boy (Liam James), who is constantly bullied by his mom’s douche boyfriend (Steve Carell) and has no basics of social knowledge whatsoever.

A pleasant boy, who had all the changes to grow up and to be a successful man, loses faith. He has nothing to live for, nothing to love, only suffer and disgrace. Nobody cares about him, even his mother has more interest in her new douche boyfriend, who, by the way, always seizes an opportunity to humiliate Duncan. Duncan is self-conscious, he has no self-respect whatsoever. In other words, Duncan is a classical loser. But something changes, when his mother’s boyfriend takes the whole family on a vacation to his beach house. Duncan changes, his life changes and it will never come back to be the same.

By the will of the fate Duncan meets an actual spiritual guide (Sam Rockwell), who explains to him how important is to believe in yourself and how unimportant is the opinions of others. Over time, Duncan becomes stronger and stronger, so he finds a lovely girl who, of course, is at first confused, but then falls for changing Duncan more and more. Throughout the movie, we trace the emergence of Duncan as a man and as a person. All this comes easily, effortlessly, in the relaxed atmosphere of a summer frivolity. It takes only one dig deeper, and immediately comes the realization that The Way Way Back is not a mindless comedy, It is a story of a boy, who became a man. It is a story of love so pure and unconditional, that there are no conventionalities to hold it back.

It seems like every couple years we get an all new animated Spider-Man series. I grew up (and was introduced to the webslinger with Spider-Man: The Animated Series, and before I was born there was the very cheesy but loveable Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends. In the years since Sam Raimi’s first Spider-Man movie we’ve had a decent short lived CG animated series from MTV and The Spectacular Spider-Man. which was geared towards very young children. Now we’ll be getting an adaptation of Brian Michael Bendis’ long running Ultimate Spider-Man series for Disney XD.

Set in high school, the series was a fresh (and updated for the times) look at Spider-Man’s origin and early years. Villains were reintroduced, sometimes with a twist (Spider-Man’s father helped create Venom) and things were a lot more straight forward (Bendis did not have to worry about decades of continuity).  I’m actually surprised that the series hasn’t been brought to the small screen yet, and I think it is ripe for the screen. I skipped Spectacular, but I might just give this series a chance.

The official synopsis:

This animated series from Marvel follows Peter Parker who, as the storyline begins, has been Spider-Man for just one year. He’s fought villains, saved lives, but still has much to learn about being a super-hero. Now, Nick Fury gives Peter the chance to go to the next level — to train to be a real super-hero and become The Ultimate Spider-Man. But before he can do that, Peter will have to learn how to work with a team of fellow teenage super-heroes.

The series will be paired with The Mighty Avengers for a Marvel Comics hour of animated shows!

This past week, Ricky Gervais let it slip that he will be returning to The Office in the season’s final episode, reprising his role of David Brent from the original UK series. He appeared earlier this season in a blink and you’d miss it encounter with Steve Carell’s Michael Scott.  Also guest starring in the hour long season finale is Arrested Development‘s Will Arnett, who Gervais has spoken about wanting to get to fill Carell’s large shoes in the past. Could Arnett be joining the show full time for its 8th season? Or could they be distracting us with Arnett and are really just slipping Gervais into the role he knows so well? We will not know for sure until the end of the season. In the meantime we should just enjoy Carell’s final episodes (the last of which will be in the final week of April).

TV News Blurbs…

TNT has renewed Southland for ten more episodes. Ben McKenzie, Shawn Hatosy and Regina King are all returning for the show’s forth season. The network has also ordered ten episodes of a new crime drama, Perception, which stars Eric McCormack and Rachael Leigh Cook. In the new series, McCormack is an eccentric neuroscientist who uses his unique skills to help the FBI solve crimes.

NBC has finally announced the premiere of The Paul Reiser Show. The new show from the Mad About You star focuses on Reiser as a fictional version of himself as he struggles with life after having a successful TV series and tries to get along with a new group of “friends” – the parents of his kids and his wife’s friend’s husbands. The show shot their pilot in a park that is walking distance to my home, so I’m really interested to see how they used the location and I love supporting stuff that shoots nearby (shout out to Parks and Rec also!)

Phew, all of that writing (and news reporting) really makes me want to take a break. I think it is time that I take a vacation to a nice holiday park for the weekend. Don’t you need a break too?

Posted on March 22nd, 2011 by ThePit | Comments Off on TV News: Spider-Man Gets Animated, The Office & More!
Filed Under Entertainment