The Fighter (Fri.)
Already acclaimed by critics and a favorite for Oscar consideration, boxing drama The Fighter opens in select theaters on Friday. The based-on-a-true-story film is about pro boxer “Irish” Micky Ward, played by star and producer Mark Wahlberg, and his crack-using older brother Dickie Eklund, played by Christian Bale. It's the most traditionally mainstream feature yet -- and the first based on someone else's screenplay -- for director David O. Russell (Three Kings), and strong support is offered by Amy Adams (Leap Year) as Ward’s girlfriend and Melissa Leo (Frozen River) as his mother.
Say hello to your mother at the official website.
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm (Tue.)
Most of the major consoles have had their biggest year-end games already released, but PC fans and World of Warcraft subscribers are anxiously awaiting Tuesday’s release of the latest expansion pack, Cataclysm. Following the last expansion pack, 2008's Wrath of the Lich King, Cataclysm sees a return of Warcraft II’s Deathwing the Destroyer. The dragon’s return creates a drastic overhaul of the game and even raises the level cap from 80 to 85. New towns, new skills, new dungeons, new zones, new races, and much more have been added to ensure the lasting appeal of one of gaming’s most enduring franchises.
Stay up all night at the official WoW website.
Tron: Legacy soundtrack by Daft Punk (Tue.)
After seemingly endless stories about Daft Punk doing their first-ever cinematic score for Tron: Legacy and the release of various official and fake leaked tracks, the actual album is finally being released on Tuesday. The 22-track soundtrack album features a mix of a traditional orchestral score (sounding a lot like Hans Zimmer’s work for The Dark Knight and Inception) and a slightly watered-down version of Daft Punk’s style of electro. Instead of embracing their own sound or diving completely into a standard score, Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo have played it safe and split the difference. Expect it to play well against the film’s imagery when it opens next week.
Ride your light cycle to the official soundtrack website.
The Tourist (Fri.)
Captain Jack Sparrow and Lara Croft hit some international waves in this thriller about an American tourist, played by Johnny Depp, who runs into a mysterious English lady of action played by Angelina Jolie. In The Tourist, opening Friday, the mismatched couple are on the run through Venice and Paris as they’re pursued by an agent played by Paul Bettany (Legion). In addition to the attractive trio, Rufus Sewell (The Pillars of the Earth) and ex-Bond Timothy Dalton are among the distinguished international cast starring for director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck (The Lives of Others).
Take a trip to the official website.
Animated Christmas episode of Community (Thu.)
NBC’s clever sophomore comedy Community might be ratings-deprived (aren’t all NBC shows?), but it sure knows how to cater to its fanbase by continually peppering its community college setting with leftfield ideas. This Thursday (at 8pm) sees its most ambitious episode yet, a stop-motion animated Christmas episode entitled “Abed's Uncontrollable Christmas.” Hijinks ensue when Abed wakes up and the whole gang is stop-motion animated. He then begins to question his Muslim upbringing and the true meaning of Christmas.
Get animated at the official Community website.
Carrie Fisher's Wishful Drinking premieres on HBO (Sun.)
Carrie Fisher’s excellent one-woman show/memoir Wishful Drinking is now an HBO special, airing Sunday night at 9pm. The former Princess of Alderaan recounts her fascinating and troubled upbringing with her famous parents Debbie Reynolds (Singin’ in the Rain) and singer Eddie Fisher (who recently passed away in September), her adventures as the bun-haired Princess Leia in the original Star Wars trilogy, and her battles coping with bipolar disorder. Fisher’s intelligence and wit turn a story that would otherwise be tragic and heartbreaking at times into a hilarious and unforgettable experience.
Have a sip at the official website.
Closing the book on last week
|Weekend Box Office Champion (Estimated, U.S. only; source: Boxofficemojo.com)|
|Tangled 72||$21.5 million; 2nd week at #1|
|#1 Album on Billboard 200 (Source: Billboard.com/Nielsen SoundScan)|
|Kanye West: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy 92||1st week at #1|
|Top-Rated Primetime Broadcast Show (Source: Nielsen)|
|Dancing with the Stars [Tue] (ABC)||24.2m viewers; week of 11/22 -11/28|