TIME movies

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Trailer is Here

Real or not real? This is war.

The full trailer for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay–Part 1 is here.

It’s war between the districts and the Capitol, and the first installment in the last chapter of The Hunger Games trilogy is not shying away from showing the gory details. Fans get their first look at Josh Hutcherson’s Peeta as the mind-warped weapon of the Capitol. There’s also a sighting of Julianne Moore’s President Coin and Game of Thrones’ Natalie Dormer, who will play Cressida. The film’s focus is clearly the intensity of rebellion and war. Katniss, of course, continues to struggle with being the symbol of a revolution, telling Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s Plutarch Heavensbee: “You will rescue Peeta at the earliest opportunity, or you will find another Mockingjay.”

The film is set to hit theaters Nov. 21. You can watch teaser trailers here and here.

TIME Music

Watch Beyoncé and Jay Z Go Out With a Bang Bang in Short Film

A classy black-and-white clip drops ahead of their concert special

Did you forget that Beyoncé and Jay Z are premiering their On the Run Tour concert special on HBO this Saturday? Of course you didn’t — you’ve probably been rewatching that Instagram recording of Jay Z from this weekend trying to figure out if Bey is indeed “pregnant with another one.”

But if you somehow forgot to mark Sept. 20 on your calendar like you did with B’Day, music’s foremost power couple is here to get you absolutely pumped with Bang Bang, the first part of a short film that’s equal parts classy French cinéma and classic Western. Now, when can we get a two-hour HBO special of just Bey staring longingly at Jay Z over diner food?

TIME Television

Review: The Mysteries of Laura Has It All. All Wrong.

It's 2014, but NBC's new crime show finds it hilariously strange that its title character is a mom and a cop.

New York City homicide cop Laura Diamond (Debra Messing) has two jobs, says the advertising for The Mysteries of Laura (Wednesdays on NBC): “Catching bad guys. Raising naughty ones.” She’s separated from her manchild husband (Josh Lucas), which leaves her mostly alone to raise two cartoonishly bratty preschool boys straight out of a Roald Dahl book. She’s a brilliant sleuth and an ace shot, yet struggles to get respect at work, where she shows up driving a car whose seats are littered with Legos and Cheddar Bunnies. This is a murder-of-the-week show, but it is blatantly, bludgeoningly concerned with a single mystery: Can you have it all?

Yes, Mysteries of Laura, you can have it all! You can be a terrible cop show and a terrible parenting show. You can be a ridiculous drama and an unfunny comedy. You can try to glom on to the legitimate problems of working mothers yet insult them, and your audience in general, in the process.

NBC only sent the pilot episode of Mysteries for review, and that’s usually not enough basis to write off a show completely–if the problems are on the level of writing, plot and execution. So to be generous, the pilot of Mysteries is bad in ordinary ways that might eventually be fixed by better scripts. The inaugural mystery is forgettable. There are stereotypes galore, as when Laura encounters an assertive black woman who lectures her parenting thus: “Nasty-ass white kids are ruining America! That’s a problem! You need to beat ‘em!” There is an uptight colleague who lectures Laura for not following “standard procedure.” And this is the sort of show that still uses the comedy-gold zinger, “Ooh, that just happened.”

That sort of thing. Weak, not exactly encouraging, but theoretically fixable. (There are also too many references to shopping at Target for a show about a Manhattan parent.) I would submit that a series of this kind–that is, a lighthearted, throwback mystery procedural that takes advantage of Messing as a comic actress–could work on a network.

But Mysteries‘ real problem is its irritating, relentlessly hammered premise: that it’s not just challenging for Laura to be both a mother and a detective, but that it’s downright staggering, even absurd. Laura is not a mom and a cop and an alien, secretly preparing the planet for colonization by her species. She’s not a mom and a cop and a hundred tiny ducks wearing a Debra Messing costume, in order to pursue their collective dream of fighting crime and raising human children. As NPR critic Linda Holmes sang, it’s simply: “She’s a cop, she’s a mom.” That’s the hook. It is the year 2014.

So during the pilot, a character finds it amusing that Laura is actually, “a middle-aged policewoman, just like Rizzoli!” (Hint to producers: the fact that this joke references Rizzoli & Isles–one of billions of cop dramas that have involved middle-aged women–is itself proof that the premise of your show is maybe not so fresh.) At another point, Laura interrogates a suspect, who sits down on a juice box one of her kids left on the chair. Because she’s a mom, dragging mom stuff into a non-mom work environment! Hilarity must needs ensue! There’s an unsettling, patronizing theme in the first episode of showing Laura solving problems at work by drawing on her mom-powers and what an earlier century would have called “women’s intuition”: solving a crime, for instance, by paying attention to mascara and jewelry. It’s not as if Laura actually catches a fleeing criminal by, I don’t know, hurling one of her kids’ freshly microwaved Hot Pockets at him. But again, I’ve only seen one episode.

I don’t doubt that Mysteries‘ makers–it’s created by Jeff Rake, based on a Spanish series, and co-producers include Greg Berlanti and McG–believe they’re making an entertaining but sincere statement about The Way We Live Now. OK. Is it challenging for parents in our society to balance childcare and full-time work? Definitely. Do women in particular get burdened with “second shift” jobs after a full day’s work? No doubt. And series from The Good Wife to Borgen to Louie treat these conflicts as part of life–emphasis on part.

But Mysteries is so insistent on treating Laura’s status, 1960s-style, as a comical absurdity that it seems less connected to the overcommitted lives of child-having TV viewers, not more. The Mysteries of Laura has all the novelty and subtlety of an Enjoli commercial. All it ends up proving is that it can shoot the bacon, fry it up in a pan–and then whack you over the head with it.

TIME Television

Tommy Chong: Dancing With the Stars Isn’t Allowed to Show Pot Leaves or Bongs

ABC

The show starts tonight at 8 on ABC

A new season of Dancing with the Stars kicks off with pointed toes, arched feet and a whole new cast of once-and-future celebrities eager to strut their stuff on the dancefloor. Among the new cast for the show’s 19th season are the delightful potpourri of NASCAR driver Michael Waltrip, designer Betsey Johnson, actress Lea Thompson, The Carlton originator Alfonso Ribeiro — and, of course, pot-smoking comedy legend Tommy Chong. As it turns out, Chong’s a lifelong fan of the form — although he’s new to the sparkles and dance pants.

“I love dancing,” Chong says. “I’ve been trying to learn tango for years. This is the perfect environment for me, because you have to learn and you only have a few day. You can’t get tired, you can’t get sore, you can’t hurt yourself — you just have to show up and do the job.”

While Chong is frank about the fact that he’s hoping to re-kick start his career by joining the show (“The exposure reinvigorates careers we contestants might have left. We’re trying to stay in the spotlight,” he says), he’s not just dancing on the ballroom floor — he has a platform, too. His issue, perhaps unsurprisingly, is medical marijuana. “I want to be the poster boy for the marijuana community,” says Chong. “They can point and me and say, ‘Look at him! He’s 76 years old, he can dance, he’s healthy, he has a beautiful wife and he smokes marijuana for medical purposes.”

“Medical marijuana is my passion in life. I went for jail for my beliefs. Now that we’re getting legal, I want to focus on the benefits of medical marijuana — it helps little children with epilepsy and MS, and it helped me with my cancer.”

Chong’s passion may be increasingly socially acceptable, but there are some network considerations to keep in mind.“The show’s not allowed to show pot leaves or bongs,” said Chong. “But they have Tommy Chong, who really is a pot leaf.”

While Chong won’t be wearing bedazzled pot leaves on his costumes, he is paying homage to his favorite medicine. “I wear a lot of green,” he says. “Peta, my partner, is going to look like a little marijuana bud.”

And at 76, Chong is also the oldest member of the cast — not that he’s worried about the competition.“I’m not dead. I’m not Fred Astaire, but I’m alive,” he laughs. “I don’t have to take my shoes off at the airport. I got the old people vote. I got a decent shot.”

When asked if his demographic of medical marijuana partakers would remember to watch, Chong says he hoped that his fans would not only remember, but vote — because he’s competing to raise awareness for medical marijuana. “It’s more than just winning a contest — it’s really showing people the benefits of this miraculous plant,” he says.

As for the question on everyone’s mind? “Cheech will come whenever I tell him to,” says Chong.

Tune in to ABC tonight at 8 p.m. to see Chong cha cha on the dance floor.

TIME celebrity

Even Taylor Swift Loved This Video of Frat Bros Performing ‘Shake It Off’

The lip dub video was good enough to earn them all an invite to one of her concerts next year

A casual one hundred million people have watched Taylor Swift’s music video for her newest single “Shake It Off” since it debuted last month. The infuriately catchy song has been in everybody’s head — including, we now know, a group of fraternity brothers at Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky.

The Delta Sigma Phi brothers performed a spirited and well-choreographed lip dub video that shows them ducking in and out of their fraternity’s houses many rooms. They dance, they sing, they play instruments and give off a vibe that very much suggests forget the haters. A link in the YouTube description also encourages viewers to donate to a fundraising campaign for a Transylvania alum suffering from lymphoma.

The video is so good that T-Swift herself caught wind of it and promised to invite the bros to one of her shows:

Although if Taylor had been a hater and said mean things about the video, we’re sure these dudes would have taken her advice and shaken it off.

 

TIME celebrities

Cops Detained Django Unchained Actress After 911 Call for Indecent Exposure

LAPD releases statement in response to public complaint by Danièle Watts that she was unfairly treated

Los Angeles police say Django Unchained actress Danièle Watts was detained and handcuffed after the cops received a 911 call about a couple involved in indecent exposure in a car.

On Thursday, Watts posted an account of the incident on her Facebook page, writing that she had not been doing anything wrong when she was approached by the police: “I was handcuffed and detained by 2 police officers from the Studio City Police Department after refusing to agree that I had done something wrong by showing affection, fully clothed, in a public place,” the post reads.

In a statement, the Los Angeles police said a 911 operator received a call that a man and woman were involved in indecent exposure in a silver Mercedes with the car door open. “Upon further investigation it was determined that no crime had been committed,” the statement reads. “Ms. Watts and her companion were subsequently released.” The department says an internal complaint investigation has been launched to look into the incident.

Watts says she was merely kissing her partner, Brian James Lucas, when the police approached them asking for identification. Lucas gave the police his ID, but Watts refused to hand over hers in the belief that she’d done nothing wrong. The police subsequently handcuffed Watts. According to Lucas’ account on his Facebook page, he believes the police thought Watts was a prostitute.

“It’s not a crime to be fully clothed showing public affection in our car,” Watts said in an interview with CNN Monday. “It’s my right and my pleasure to enjoy myself… I don’t feel like I should be ashamed about it.”

Watts told CNN she was “humbled by the experience” of having her story told to the world.

TIME Television

Mindy Kaling: I Wish Every Actress Could Shoot a Sex Scene With Chris Messina

Mindy Kaling
Mindy Kaling Paul A. Hebert—Invision/AP

Yes, Kaling has read your weird Mindy Project fanfiction — and she loved it

Fox’s The Mindy Project returns for its third season on Sept. 16, which means America is back to getting regular doses of television’s most entertaining ob-gyn: Dr. Mindy Lahiri, who’s giving her relationship with on-again-off-again office flame Danny Castellano (Chris Messina) another go. TIME caught up with Mindy Kaling to talk about the new season’s sex scenes, Beyoncé-inspired erotic fanfiction and her favorite bloody TV shows.

TIME: What can you tease about the new season?

Mindy Kaling: There’s something sexy and fun about all the new boyfriends coming in, but we found that with Mindy and Danny together, the show is actually so much more rated-R than before. It’s delightful for us, because we’re all kind of neurotic, slightly over-educated perverts. So that was great.

Their first sex scene looks awkward. What was it like to shoot?

A joy. Chris Messina is the most in-touch-with-his-body person of all time, and all he does is make you feel beautiful and confident. I’ve known him now for quite some time and we’re so comfortable with each other that I wasn’t self-conscious at all. I wish on every actress that they get to shoot a sex scene with Chris Messina, because it’s great fun.

Have you read any of the Mindy-Danny fanfiction that’s online?

A couple years ago I read something, and it was fantastic. I was like, “Okay, I better not read any more of this because I could be enjoying this too much.”

I found one that was both kind of X-rated and Beyoncé-inspired.

That’s wonderful. That could have been one of my staff.

You’re writing the follow-up to your first book, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns). Any tips for writer’s block?

For every nine hours that I’m “writing,” only one hour of it is productive time. So for me, I just make sure that I’ve put in the hours of procrastinating, Internet and wandering around my house, and then I’ll have one hour of actual productivity.

Grey’s Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes is guesting on The Mindy Project. Will there be jokes about her fictional hospital?

There are none in the script yet, but I have obviously loved Shonda for such a long time, and she’s a fan of our show. Her character went to Dartmouth [where Kaling and Rhimes both studied], so it’s an organic way to bring her into the show to play herself. She’s being such a good sport about it. It’s a super funny cameo.

Have you learned anything weird about medicine from playing a doctor?

One thing I’ve noticed from going to my own OB-GYN is how everything is so streamlined in a way that we have to keep up with the technology on set. My own doctor, who’s in his 60s, is using his iPad, and everything’s portable and wireless in way that a lot of shows don’t keep up with. That was one thing we had to do.

The show pays homage to many rom-coms. What do you say to people who claim the genre is dead?

The romantic comedy is alive — it’s just not in the same places I think we’re used to finding them. I find them so much more on television, and television is so much more of a writer’s medium.

When it comes to television, are you a binge-watcher?

I can only marathon shows. I can’t just watch 21 minutes of it, I’ll need to watch nine episodes, so the Netflix model is great for me, because I love to watch an entire season in a day. Also for my schedule, that works best.

What shows are you into right now?

I’m waiting for The Walking Dead to return. I love Game of Thrones.

Those are pretty bloody. Are you squeamish?

I’m not squeamish about blood, except for hearing. I can’t hear stories about people getting their arm caught in the door or anything like that. If people tell me violent stories, I can’t listen to that. But I can watch it like a sociopath!

A version of this story also appears in the Sept. 22 issue of TIME, on stands now.

TIME Scotland

Vivienne Westwood Backs Scottish Independence at London Fashion Week

Designer Vivienne Westwood gestures backstage before the presentation of her Vivienne Westwood Red Label Spring/Summer 2015 collection during London Fashion Week
Vivienne Westwood wears a "YES" badge and Scottish flag backstage before the presentation of her Vivienne Westwood Red Label Spring/Summer 2015 collection during London Fashion Week on Sept. 14, 2014. Suzanne Plunkett—Reuters

Controversial English fashionista says she is "very unpatriotic about England because it is being completely ruined"

Vivienne Westwood knows how to make a statement.

The English fashion designer and notorious rabble-rouser showed off her support for Scottish independence ahead of this week’s referendum on secession from the United Kingdom during the fashion show for her Red Label S/S collection on Sunday at London’s Fashion Week.

The 73-year-old designer didn’t just have her models walk the catwalk wearing “Yes” badges — which is the motto for the independence campaign — but she also left notes explaining her views on every seat in the venue.

Westwood first revealed her pro-independence stance in a video, called “Vivienne Says Yes,” on her official website a few weeks ago:

But after her show on Sunday, Westwood expanded on her view to reporters, saying that despite being English herself, she “hate[s] England” and is “very unpatriotic about England because it is being completely ruined.”

While many famous Scots have weighed in with their views on whether the country should break the 307-year-old union with England, Wales and Northern Ireland — including Sean Connery, Ewan McGregor and Gerard Butler — Westwood is perhaps the most prominent English voice to champion Scotland’s independence.

Of course, this isn’t the first time Westwood has waded into politics. One year she sent her models down the catwalk bearing signs denouncing the treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay. She has also protested against fracking and climate change and has publicly supported both Wikileaks founder Julian Assange and former U.S. soldier turned national secret leaker Chelsea Manning.

Yet Westwood, who launched her fashion career in London in the 1970s, has long been influenced by Scotland. Her designs have often included tartan and she even created her own pattern and clan, called the “Westwood MacAndreas,” for her 1993 A/W collection. The tartan was even officially registered by Scotland.

Despite her enthusiastic support, Westwood also said she would not be moving her business to an independent Scotland. “I’ve got 200 people working for me, I just can’t relocate just like that,” she told Reuters. “I will just have to keep making lots of tartan and use the Scottish mills.”

TIME celebrities

A Statue of Amy Winehouse Has Been Unveiled in London

Amy Winehouse Statue Unveiling
A statue of the late Amy Winehouse is unveiled in Camden Town on September 14, 2014 in London, England. Dave J Hogan — Getty Images

The sculpture was unveiled on what would have been the late songstress’s 31st birthday

English soul, R&B and jazz singer Amy Winehouse has been immortalized in bronze three years after her death at the age of 27, with the unveiling of a life-size statue of her on Sunday in Camden, North London, the BBC reports.

The statue, created by sculptor Scott Eaton, portrays the iconic artist with a hand on her hip and a red rose in her signature beehive hairdo. Eaton told the BBC that his sculpture intended to capture her “attitude and strength, but also give subtle hints of insecurity.”

The unveiling took place on Winehouse’s 31st birthday, in the presence of her parents, relatives and fans. Her father Mitch said that seeing the statue was “incredibly emotional” and that Eaton had done an “amazing job in capturing her.” He also said his daughter had been “in love with Camden,” and that fans associated the district with her.

Winehouse, who struggled with alcohol and drug abuse, was found dead at her London home in 2011. Her death was attributed to accidental alcohol poisoning.

[BBC]

TIME movies

The Imitation Game Takes Top Prize at Toronto Film Festival

War, injustice and Benedict Cumberbatch combine in the biopic of British cryptologist Alan Turing

The Imitation Game, a World War II drama starring Benedict Cumberbatch as a cryptologist who helps the British score a huge intelligence coup against the Nazis, won the 2014 Grolsch People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival.

The People’s Choice Award is the festival’s most prestigious prize and considered a bellwether for Oscar wins.

Morten Tyldum’s film — set for release on Nov. 21 — casts Sherlock star Cumberbatch as Alan Turing, the computer genius who cracked the German Enigma code — a massive boost for the Allied war effort. Unfortunately, an ungrateful government prosecuted Turing in 1952 for being gay and revoked his security clearance. (Homosexuality was not decriminalized in the U.K. until 1967.) Turing committed suicide in 1954.

Keira Knightley co-stars in the film as a code breaker and Turing’s jilted fiancée.

Three of the past six People’s Choice Award winners at the Toronto Film Festival have gone on to win the Best Picture Oscar (Slumdog Millionaire, 12 Years a Slave and The King’s Speech), the Toronto Star reports.

Meanwhile, the People’s Choice prize in the documentary category went to Hajooj Kuka’s Beats of the Antonov, about Sudanese refugees struggling not just to survive but also to preserve their traditions. The Midnight Madness Award, for films in the action, shock, horror and fantasy genres, went to Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement’s What We Do in the Shadows, a comic film about three New Zealand vampires sharing a flat.

The 11-day festival wrapped up on Sunday, after screening 392 films from 79 countries.

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