Celebrity

The NEXT Blog


The NEXT Blog
The latest in pop culture, celeb news, cool events and entertainment

[11.28.08]

Choke


 
Choke

ALL CHOKED UP.
One word for you: Choke. I only started Chuck Palahniuk’s book (of Fight Club fame) last night, but I can’t get it out of my head! The book’s protagonist, Victor Mancini, is a character who can only be described as unlikable. His idea of income is finagling strangers into giving him money after they ‘save’ his life from a choke he stages. Oh, did I also mention he preys on vulnerable women at sex addiction workshops? Yet somehow I’m completely enthralled. Not so into reading? Check out the film starring Sam Rockwell and Anjelica Huston!
D.K


[11.27.08]

A Christmas Tale


 
A Christmas Tale

Early Christmas
Want to see a movie that is scarier than Twilight and more dramatic than Australia? Find yourself a cinema that is playing the new—and completely satisfying—French film called A Christmas Tale. Set in present-day France, the movie features legendary actress Catherine Deneuve who plays mother, wife and friend to a group of foreign film A-listers (specifically the incredible Mathieu Amalric and the handsome Melvil Poupard) who crash her X-mas day dinner. Because, let’s face it, nothing is as epic as family dysfunction during the holidays.
Elio Iannacci


[11.26.08]

6/10 • 6.5/10 • 8/10
New discs are pouring in or leaking out onto the internet and I wanted to quickly give my thoughts on what I’ve heard.

Kanye West 808 & Heartbreak


 
Kanye West 808 & Heartbreak

REVIEW: Kanye West’s 808 & Heartbreak
Sounds like Indiana Jones meets Grace Jones. Adventurous sounds in thrillers such as “RoboCop”, “Street Lights” and “Love Lockdown” are primo funko classico but lackluster tracks such as “Amazing”, “Bad News” and “Heartless” sound like dated anthems from the turntable of a retired DJ from South Beach or Ibiza. Kanye, you need to kick it up a notch! Rating: 6.5/10

Britney Spears Circus


 
Britney Spears Circus

REVIEW: Britney Spears Circus
Brit’s last pop outing, Blackout, really outshines this disc on so many levels. Even though songs such as “Unusual You”, “Womanizer” and “Lace and Leather” touch on the gold of old school Spears (a la “Toxic” and “Slave For You”), the rest of the album is missing the slick sound bite of Britney pre- and post JT and K-Fed. There’s always remixes. Rating: 6/10

Beyoncé I am…Sasha Fierce


 
Beyoncé I am…Sasha Fierce

REVIEW: Beyoncé I am…Sasha Fierce
Ok, the title of the album is ridiculously hilarious and I’ve been having fun calling people Sasha Fierce for weeks but the music is anything but funny. Beyoncé continues to bust out of the boxes of R&B, soul and pop with the disc and from slow songs such as “Halo”, “Satellites” and “Disapear” to club-thumping beauties such as “Diva”, “Sweet Dreams” and “Hello”, I am digging BK’s combos. My favorite moment off this album is when Missus Knowles growls these so-bad-they’re brilliant lyrics: “When he pull up, wanna pop my hood up / Bet he better have a six pack, in the cooler”. FIERCE 4 REAL. Rating: 8/10.
Elio Iannacci


[11.25.08]

Kath and Kim


 
Kath and Kim

SO BAD IT’S GOOD:
Kath and Kim is the latest series to have me in stitches, starring our cover girl Selma Blair and funny girl Molly Shannon. This sitcom about a whacky dysfunctional mother/daughter duo is totally over-the-top with a kitschy California suburban backdrop (think lots of mall food court scenes, spandex, zebra print, and a Bodyguard soundtrack). Baywatch alum Pamela Anderson is set to make a cameo appearance. Check it out on Thursdays at 8:30pm on E!
A.B


[11.24.08]

The Flying Troutmans


 
The Flying Troutmans

MIRIAM TOEWS IS ON A ROLL:
Last week I attended the Writer’s Trust Awards at the Isabel Bader theatre. Miriam Toews picked up the Rogers $25,000 fiction award for The Flying Troutmans. The novel tells the story of a 28 year-old woman who goes road-tripping with her niece and nephew after their mother is hospitalized. No stranger to awards, Toews snagged the Governor General’s Award in 2004 for A Complicated Kindness. She also recently made her silver screen debut, starring in a Mexican film called Luz Silenciosa, which screened at Cannes.
Alexandra Breen


[11.21.08]

Sunrise


 
Sunrise

IT’S TIME TO TEST YOUR ATTENTION SPAN: Twentieth Century Fox is releasing a 12 Film DVD collection featuring classic silent films by F.W. Murnau and Frank Borzage – two names film students will surely recognize. The Murnau, Borzage and Fox collection is being released on Dec. 9, making it the perfect holiday gift for film buffs. –A.B


[11.20.08]

Marley & Me


 
Marley & Me

A Dog’s Life: Jennifer Aniston was on Oprah last week promoting Marley & Me and looking mighty fine. Pooch lovers (like myself) won’t want to miss this drama based on the autobiographical bestselling novel by John Grogan. But, you’ll need to have your tissues ready. You’re guaranteed to be boo hooing your way through this flick about a golden lab who teaches his owners (Aniston and Owen Wilson) how to live life to the fullest. –Alexandra Breen


[11.19.08]

Thor


 
Thor

WTF WEDNESDAYS: Since we get so many questionable cds, movies, books and products landing on our desks, we decided to share with you, our loyal readers, which ones are just beyond bizarre. To begin this once-a-month portion of the blog (look for it on any given Wednesday next month), we have a doozy of a cd for you by a Vancouver-based rocker from the 70s. His name is Thor (no joke) and he decided to re-issue his album of ’77 called Keep The Dogs Away. A former Mr. Canada and Mr. U.S.A. (both bodybuilding not beauty contests), Thor looks like an oilier version of cheesy 90s model Fabio and sounds like Weird Al trying to sing heavy Metallica and Abba….at the same time. Included on this ridiculous cd is track that was recorded in Toronto called “I’m Thor” which essentially gives you the lowdown on who this peculiar Viking really is. I think he should seriously consider recording a duet with Paris Hilton. – Elio Iannacci


[11.18.08]

Katy Perry


 
Katy Perry

SHE’S HOT WHEN IT’S COLD. Katy Perry is coming to Toronto! The gorgeous singer-songwriter will be wowing crowds at Kool Haus on March 30, 2009. Tickets went on sale on Saturday, and at only $16.50 you’ll get a big-artist show at an indie-artist price. I can’t wait to see what she wears! Check Katy out in the February issue of FLARE! – D.K


[11.17.08]

Angela and Andy’s official wedding site


 
Angela and Andy’s official wedding site

OFFICE ROMANCE. It seems The Office just keeps getting better and better. Check out Angela and Andy’s official wedding site (designed by Andy himself). You can read about all aspects of their nuptials, from Andy’s proposal in Dunder Miflin’s parking lot to their recent choice of wedding location – Dwight’s family’s beet farm. Take part in the hilarity at www.angelaandy.com.–Dalia Kagan


[11.14.08]

Art Gallery of Ontario


 
Art Gallery of Ontario

DESIGNER DIGS: The wait is over! The Art Gallery of Ontario is re-opening today with its newly designed Frank Gehry digs. Enjoy free admission November 14-16. –Alexandra Breen


[11.13.08]

Labelle


 
Labelle

OLD SCHOOL GOLD Labelle—the music trio that became famous for singing “Lady Marmalade” before Xtina and Pink were even born—have come together to record after being on a 32-year hiatus(!). The reunion album, which was launched last month, is called Back To Now and it is pure soul gold. Lenny Kravitz produced two marvelous songs off the disc (“System” and “Candlelight”) that make you wish you were back in the 70s. That was when the group was at their most fashion forward—wearing breast plates and Hussein Chalayan-esque outfits that Madonna, Kylie, Beyonce, Whitney and a million other divas eventually copied. –Elio Iannacci


[11.12.08]

Grace Jones Hurricane


 
Grace Jones Hurricane

LADIES AND GENTLEMAN…MISS GRACE JONES: After waiting 19 years to record a new album, pop star/fashion muse Grace Jones has just released a disc called Hurricane. Known as a major inspiration behind artists such as Keith Haring, Helmut Newton and Andy Warhol, Jones’ visual and sonic legacy is one that continues to influence the runway and the radio. Her new album’s title track is one of my most played songs these days because it showcases Ms. Jones’ lion-like vocal ferocity. –Elio Iannacci


[11.11.08]

Barack Obama


 
Barack Obama

POWER OF CHANGE If you were as inspired by Barack Obama’s presidential victory as I was, you’ll be pleased to hear that Edward Norton (American History X) has been working on a documentary about the President-elect since 2006. The HBO flick will air sometime in 2009. –Alexandra Breen


[11.10.08]

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas


 
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

FORBIDDEN FRIENDS I saw the movie Changeling last weekend (a definite must-see) and a preview for The Boy in the Striped Pajamas captivated me. Based on the novel by John Boyne, it is the story of Bruno, the young son of a Nazi Officer living on the grounds of Auschwitz during WW2. Bruno befriends a Jewish boy of his same age who lives on the other side of his house’s fence. This film is sure to be both heartbreaking and moving; it opens this Friday. –Dalia Kagan


[11.7.08]

etchpression


 
etchpression

TECH ART:Looking to add some artistic flair to your favorite tech items? Checkout www.etchpression.com. It’s a Montreal-based company specializing in etching gadgets. –A.B


[11.6.08]

Role Models


 
Role Models

COMEDY ALERT. I think we’re all in need of a good laugh during these tough economic times – check out Role Models, coming to theatres this Friday. The movie stars Paul Rudd and Seann William Scott as two men sentenced to becoming mentors after a series of run-ins with the law. As if that doesn’t sound funny already, the addition of Christopher Mintz-Plasse (Superbad’s McLovin) will surely guarantee some laughs. –D.K


[11.5.08]

A Single Man


 
A Single Man

FILM NEWS: Christopher Isherwood’s A Single Man is next up on my to-read list. Tom Ford recently announced that he is going to direct the film adaptation of this drama about a gay college professor who loses his long-time partner. Rumours in blog land are that Flare cover girl Julianne Moore and Colin Firth will be playing the leads. –A.B


[11.4.08]

Amazon Kindle


 
Amazon Kindle

DIGITAL BOOKS: The Amazon Kindle is definitely going on my Christmas list. Not only does this wireless electronic reader hold over 200 books, but you can also use it to read blogs, newspapers and word documents. – Alexandra Breen


[11.3.08]

Metric


 
Metric

IT’S ABOUT TIME. For those of you (like myself) who have been anxiously awaiting Metric’s new album, who have been fanatically checking their website and obsessively stalking their MySpace – the shenanigans can finally end! Tickets recently went on sale for the Jingle Bell Rock 2008 Tour – a concert series put on by Canadian indie bands to help raise funds and awareness for youth in distress. Metric is scheduled to headline with support from Tokyo Police Club, The Dears, and Sebastien Grainger and the Mountains. Check out www.ilovemetric.com for more info about the tour and to see a video of band front-woman, Emily Haines, talk about the album (set to be released in early ’09) and new single, “Help, I’m Alive.”– Dalia Kagan


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