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David Tennant

by Moe - 0 Comment(s)

The deceptively young-looking David Tennant is a remarkably versatile actor, but the same can be said of many actors who are classically trained. When he was 16 he auditioned for and won a place at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, the youngest student to ever do so. A three year stint as a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company helped hone his skills.

At the advanced age of four he decided to become an actor, inspired by his love of the BBC show Doctor Who. How ironic then that he would play the iconic Doctor and in the process make himself a household name.

Since leaving Doctor Who his career has continued to rise, with lead roles in films, TV series and theatre. He also voices many audiobooks ranging from Shakespeare to the popular children’s ‘Dragon’ series by Cressida Cowell.

Check him out in 2014’s Masterpiece Mystery, The Escape Artist. This is a dark, taut and well-crafted mini-series with a devilishly good unexpected ending.

United is based on the true story of Manchester United, the youngest championship team in English soccer history and their rise from the ashes of a tragic plane crash that devastated the team.

He seems to really like doing mini-series and Casanova, The Secret Smile and Spies of Warsaw are all well rated in IMDB. A little harder to get your hands on due to current popularity (but worth the wait) is Broadchurch, now starting its second season in Britain, with season one available for holds at Calgary Public Library.

Also, check out the documentary Earthflight narrated by Tennant. Earthflight is a nature documentary filmed with a bird's-eye view of the natural world, joining the journeys of snow geese, cranes, albatrosses, eagles and other birds across six continents. It's very good and worth a watch.


by Moe - 1 Comment(s)


Our good friends at eOne Entertainment have provided us with 25 (double) advance screening passes. Up this time is the new Simon Pegg movie Hector and the Search for Happiness.

Hector’s life seems perfect, but it’s not. Hector (SIMON PEGG) is a successful, well-meaning and eccentric professional, filled with childlike wonder, but he’s stuck. He’s a busy psychiatrist with a thriving practice, living with his beautiful girlfriend, Clara (ROSAMUND PIKE), in a fabulous London flat; but he’s losing patience with his patients, who aren’t getting any happier, and his romantic relationship isn’t going anywhere. Hector feels like a fraud. How can he help his patients be happier when he doesn’t really know what happiness is? And so, Hector sets off on a global quest in search of happiness.

You know the drill. Go to this external site enter the exclusive Movie Maniacs password CaptureHappiness967 and have your double pass sent directly to you for printing. The night of the movie turn up early, exchange this pass for an actual ticket at the box office, and in you go.

The screening will take place:

Thursday, September 25, 2014
Show Time: 7:00 PM
Cineplex Odeon Westhills Cinemas
165 Stewart Green SW
Calgary, AB T3H 3C8

If you claim tickets and find yourself unable to use them, please pass them on. They do not check ID so there is no need to worry about a different name.

Drop me a review through comments if you are one of the lucky ones to go. Want to see more Simon Pegg- we have a good selection here at CPL. He's quite versatile but does lean towards outrageous black comedies like Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and World's End. He also plays 'Scotty' in the new Star Trek franchise.

The Charming Insanity That is The Muppets

by Moe - 1 Comment(s)

I have always been a huge Muppet fan and during the 70's I went out of my way to make sure I caught the Muppet Show. I even have an original Fozzie and Gonzo coffee mug. Each week they brought on a new headliner, and put them in very silly skits into which they threw their heart and soul. Anybody who was anybody appeared on this show over the next five seasons.

The names of the headliners are a little faded now, but in todays terms it would be like having Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Emma Stone, Andrew Garfield, Channing Tatum, Jennifer Lawrence, Tom Cruise, Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Hemsworth as your fall line up — on a televison show — with puppets! It ran from 1976-81 and won many, many awards.

Although cancelled from syndication there were almost two dozen television specials plus theatrical releases in 1979, 1981, 1984, 1992, 1996, and 1999. This was followed by a serious dry spell until funny man Jason Segel, himself raised on the Muppets, decided to ressurect lovable Kermit and company. He wrote a tremendous script and introduced a whole new generation to the charming insanity that is the Muppets. For all things Muppet at the Library click here.

The newest offering is Muppets Most Wanted, and I have to say it has lost none of its charm over the years. Of course it helps that the characters don't age and you can just pop in your A-listers de jour, but the writing itself remains faithful to the original themes and gags we love—like Gonzo and his chickens, ways to explode Beaker and Miss Piggie's unwavering love for her Kermie.

On Thursday September 18th for our regular film night at Crowfoot we will be showing this absolutely delightful movie in the open area in the Kids Zone. No registration required, the movie runs 107 minutes and is rated Family.

Grand Budapest Hotel

by Moe - 1 Comment(s)

Wes Anderson is one talented guy. In fact no less an icon than Martin Scorsese chooses him as his favourite director, and when pressed in an Esquire magazine article Marty says he may be the next Martin Scorsese. High praise indeed.

He started in his childhood writing plays and making Super-8 movies. While attending the University of Texas, where he majored in philosophy, he met Owen Wilson. They became friends and began making short films together. One of their shorts was Bottle Rocket (1994), which starred Owen and his brother Luke. The short was screened at the Sundance Film Festival, where it was successfully received and from this he got funding to make a feature length version.

He frequently casts the same actors while also being able to draw upon the talents of many A listers. Like Woody Allen, it is becoming a feather in your cap to be chosen to appear in one of his films.

His most recent offering is the delightful The Grand Budapest Hotel. Starring among others, Ralph Fiennes, Adrien Brody, Edward Norton, Saorise Ronan, and Jude Law, there are many more fine actors in it and half the fun of watching his films is spotting performers who are often on only for a very brief period. This movie is quirky, charming and original and is Fiennes' best role in years.

Among some of his others — and he takes his time in between films so they don't come out as fast as his fans might wish — are The Royal Tenenbaums, Moonrise Kingdom, Rushmore, The Fantastic Mr. Fox and The Darjeeling Limited. If you don't want to commit to a full retrospective of his films, treat yourself to Grand Budapest. It may be enough to hook you, and if it doesn't I don't think you'll regret the two hours spent.

What's All the Hoopla? Foreign Film Downloads!

by Melanie - 0 Comment(s)

In my first Hoopla-related post, I gave information on how to screen from your portable or tv and an overview of the site and app.

This time, I want to point out that Hoopla has added foreign films in their feature areas that you can browse directly. Simply go to "Browse." The three categories are French, Spanish, and Chinese films. There is an impressive assortment, including art-house, martial arts, suspense and comedy.

Since these are popular checkouts from most library locations, you'll enjoy accessing them through the Hoopla app or site. This type of content may not be available from other providers. Here it's readily and legally available!

Hoopla is free with your library card and is building up as we speak. Not only that, the collection available from Hoopla reflects the needs and tastes of Calgary Public Library Customers so you'll help shape it when you make your selections.

If you you just want to take a peek without making an account (yet!), access Hoopla in our Featured Digital Content link on the library's homepage and choose "Browse."

Orphan Black

by Moe - 1 Comment(s)

In my recent Emmys post I mentioned the series Orphan Black. This Canadian offering first hit the airwaves in March of 2013 and we have seasons one and two---and it has been renewed for a third season. Filmed in Toronto and populated almost exclusively with Canadian talent, it does not necessarily take place in Toronto. Although it makes no effort to disguise its Ontario locales, Toronto is mostly intended to stand in as 'Generica'- any large modern city.

It has already been nominated for and won numerous awards but inexplicably isn't up for any Emmys. This is a head scratcher for me because Tatiana Maslany is easily as good as Claire Danes (Homeland) and Michelle Dockery (Downton), and way better than Robin Wright (House of Cards) and Julianna Marguiles (The Good Wife), both of whom put me to sleep with their performances. And the series itself far surpasses Mad Men and House of Cards, and is as good as Breaking Bad and Downton Abbey (although the one to beat in the Outstanding Drama category still remains for me, True Detective). Now having said this, it won't appeal to as broad a base as some of the above mentioned, but I still strongly maintain it deserves some nods.

I can't tell you too much about Maslany's performance without giving stuff away, but if and when you do watch it you'll know why I choose hers as the best performance. This is a near-future Sci-Fi/ Thriller combo, with great pacing, lots of plot twists and very compelling characters. Many things here to keep even the most seasoned or jaded viewers guessing.


by Moe - 2 Comment(s)



As promised here we go with the third round of advanced screening passes. Sin City 2- A dame To Kill For airs on Thursday August 21st at Cineplex Odeon Eau Claire Market Theatre at 7:00. To claim your double pass log onto this external site and enter the exclusive Movie Maniacs code SinCity2Cal9964330. Your voucher can then be printed from home. Remember to arrive at the theatre early and exchange this voucher for an actual ticket at the box office, which will then guarantee you a seat.

If you aren't familiar with these films let me tell you they are based on a very dark, violent graphix novel by Frank Miller. It won't be for everybody, so if you have doubts best to pass and let people who really like this franchise claim the tickets. This round of three giveaways was an exception in terms of giving you advance notice, so check back regularly as tickets come up frequently without notice.

Thanks again to our friends at entONE for the passes---they were very generous, gifting us with 75 double passes! Hope you are one of the lucky ones who gets to see either THE GIVER, EXPENDABLES 3 or SIN CITY. If you do, write me with your thoughts on the movie through COMMENTS at the bottom of this or any post- would love to hear from you.

Film Night at Crow

by Moe - 1 Comment(s)

On Thursday August 21st at Crowfoot Library we will be showcasing the movie Divergent. This brand new dvd release currently has hundreds of holds on it, so why not avoid the wait and come see it here.

Due to its running time of 129 minutes we will be starting it a little earlier than usual. Doors will open 5:45 and the movie will start promptly at 6:15. It is rated PG-13 for intense violence and action, thematic elements and some sensuality.

Feel free to bring your own treats and settle in for this well rated film.

More Advanced Screening Passes

by Moe - 1 Comment(s)




As promised here we go with the second offering of advanced screening passes. These are for EXPENDABLES 3 which airs on Thursday August 14th at Cineplex Odeon Eau Claire Market Theatre at 7:00. To claim your double pass log onto this external site and enter the exclusive Movie Maniacs code EX3Cal445318. Your voucher will be emailed to you for printing on your home computer. Remember to arrive at the theatre a little earlier and exchange this voucher for an actual ticket at the box office, which will then guarantee you a seat. In fact, for this one I would arrive close to 6:00 as interest will be very high---this time they have added Harrison Ford, Kelsey Grammer and Mel Gibson to the already testosterone fuelled flicks.

We have secured 25 double passes for our followers, but once they are gone, they are gone. Now remember to check back again because sometime in the next seven days I will release the last of the 25 double passes for another big summer release. And I'll keep you guessing on this title as well but give you a hint. This is also a sequel, one that is almost a decade since the original and is based on a very popular, albeit dark Graphix Novel.

Thanks again to our friends at entONE for the passes.

Free Advanced Screening Passes

by Moe - 2 Comment(s)



The first of three — yes three films for which Movie Maniacs has acquired advanced screening tickets

This first round is for THE GIVER which airs on Wednesday August 13th at Scotia Bank Theatre Chinook at 7:00. To claim your double pass log onto this external site and enter the exclusive Movie Maniacs code TheGiverCal665007. Your voucher will be emailed to you for printing on your home computer. Remember to arrive at the theatre a little earlier and exchange this voucher for an actual ticket at the box office, which will then guarantee you a seat.

We have secured 25 double passes for our followers, but once they are gone, they are gone. But check back in the next 48 hours when I will release a new set of 25 doubles for another big summer release. These passes are for — nah, I'm not gonna tell you — gonna make you keep checking back! Remember, sometime in the next 48 hours!

Thanks to our friends at entONE for the passes.

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