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Review – Perception
Rating: 3. TNT’s new mystery series “Perception” premieres Monday, July 9, at 10 p.m. and it should make at least a few waves in the summer ratings doldrums. Critics described it as “House” meets “A Beautiful Mind” and adopts “Monk” and called the show“amiable.”
Entertainment Weekly gave the show a “B,” and called it a “House–meets–The Mentalist–meets–A Beautiful Mind–meets–She’s All That procedural.” They remark that “The pace is nicely brisk and both leads are amiable presences, but the writers could have worked a little harder…”
The New York Times notes that the show “has aspirations, reflected in its title, to explore questions of illusion and reality,” but also says that it exhibits “forced whimsicality” and “an insistent do-gooder impulse…the sort of thing that could kill a show pretty quickly if allowed to multiply.” And yet, “On other counts,” they say, “‘Perception’ is a palatable, if more than usually implausible, cable mystery.”
Newsday gave the show a “C+,” and said, “ ‘Perception’ is both clever and ridiculous — but should do well for TNT because it’s also familiar.” They also criticized lead actor Eric McCormack, writing that “He’s alternately annoying, brash, weird, smooth, kind and brittle. He’s as insightful as Sherlock or as doddering as Watson — sometimes in the same moment.”
Variety wasn’t impressed, writing that the show “is really just more of the same-old, same-old, with a colorfully flawed (eccentric or crazy, take your pick) hero solving cases that prove almost wholly generic.” “All told,” they said, “ ‘Perception’ feels like an entry-level course, and isn’t nearly as cerebral as it pretends to be. Or maybe it is, and what’s onscreen is all just an illusion.”
The Washington Post called the show’s protagonist “the most unreliable narrator in the history of unreliable narrators,” and wrote, “While this adds a twist to what would otherwise be an average crime drama, it also means that the audience never knows whether a scene is actually happening…For some viewers, this will be a neat trick. For others, it will be maddening.” They also added that “For those who don’t mind getting sent off in lots of false directions, or aren’t going to even try to keep up, ‘Perception’ offers the chance to just go along for an enjoyable ride.”
The New York Post said, “Both the show, and McCormack [the lead actor], are fine, but I’m not sure there’s enough here to keep viewers coming back for more.” They also said that while “Both McCormack and Cook are likable enough, and have an engaging on-screen chemistry…The series…lays on the quirkiness a bit too thickly.”
The Wall Street Journal thought the show fell short, saying, “There are aspects of the series that are engaging—Daniel’s intricately conceived sleuthing for the FBI, for instance—but, as the voices in your own head soon tell you, there’s a lot more of it that’s wearisome.”
The Huffington Post said that “McCormack’s energy and the chugging, unflashy competence of the show around him make ‘Perception’ watchable. For me, it’s not a must-see hour, but TNT has done a moderate service here for those who prefer their hour-long dramas to be procedurally oriented.”
The San Francisco Chronicle noted that “ ‘Perception’ tries to milk the ongoing interest in Sherlock Holmes,” but that “The similarities end there, though…because “Perception” isn’t very smart.” As if that wasn’t enough, they added, “it’s also not very pleasant.”
The Philadelphia Inquirer called it “a clever story told in a flat way,” and said, “While it has a lot of promise, Perception relies on flimsy plot lines and fails to take advantage of its unique premise.”
USA Today says “Perception‘s near-total divorce from reality, while annoying, is not the worst of its crimes. The larger problem is that Daniel’s crime-solving abilities are so randomly applied as to be virtually pointless.
The Los Angeles Times says “If you can overlook both the derivative nature of the set-up — “House” meets “A Beautiful Mind” and adopts “Monk” — and the dangerous absurdity of defining schizophrenia as just another way of looking at things, “Perception” has a certain summery, tweet-friendly entertainment value. “
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Lots of good choices for the daily pick for tonight but we're going with fall finale of "The Crazy Ones" on CBS at 9:00 because we're Robin Williams fans.
- Boardwalk Empire
- Ray Donovan
- Three Stooges repeats
- Breaking Bad
- Black Mirror
- Ray Donovan
- The Mindy Project
- Children's Hospital
- South Park
Morris Levy is the producer of the HBO film, "Seduced and Abandoned" in which actor Alec Baldwin and director James Toback’s attempt to raise financing for a new film. When not busy producing movies, here's what Levy likes to watch:
Check out our interview with Levy for more insights.
Glenn Howerton plays Dennis Reynolds on FX's It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (on which he is also a writer and executive producer). For a guy that funny, you might be surprised (or not) to learn that he's also a fan of dark dramas. Here's what he likes to watch:
More insights on the actor/writer and It's Always Sunny can be found in our interview with Glenn.
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New on VOD
Here are the new VOD films for the week of December 10, 2013. Click on a movie title for more information, trailers and reviews.
Fast & Furious 6. Rating: 4 (out of 5). The sixth installment of the Fast and Furious franchise, the film follows a professional criminal gang led by Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) who have retired following their successful heist in Fast Five(2011), but remain wanted fugitives. U.S. Diplomatic Security Service agent Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) offers to clear the group's criminal records and allow them to return home in exchange for helping him to take down a skilled mercenary organization led by Owen Shaw and his second-in-command, Dominic's presumed-dead lover Letty Ortiz. The film premieres on VOD on Tuesday, December 10. According to Chicago Tribune, “it’s a surprising, unlikely delight.” Reviews, video and more.
The Hunt. Rating: 4 (out of 5). Things are finally starting to look up for Lucas, after a tough divorce and the loss of his job. But a lie that he molested a child starts to shatter his life, and he is forced to fight for his life and dignity. This Danish film will be available on VOD starting December 10. USA Today gives it 4 stars (out of 4), and writes, “Unsettling, forthright and thought-provoking, The Hunt is also brilliantly titled.” Reviews, video and more.
Some Velvet Morning. Rating: 4 (out of 5). A man, Fred, arrives on the doorstep of his mistress, Eve, after four long years, and says that he finally left his wife. When she rejects him, his persistence turns into obsession, and a dark history between them is revealed. Neil Labute writes and directs. The film will be available on VOD starting Tuesday, December 10th. Film.com describes it as “A horror film with no blood, a rough ride that kicks you in the stomach.” Revies, video and more.
Here Comes the Devil. Rating: 2 (out of 5). Felix and Sol’s preteen son and daughter get lost overnight after taking a casual hike to a desolate, cave-riddled mountainside. The children return but things turn for the worse, though, when their behavior changes. The film will be available on VOD starting Friday, December 13th. According to Screen Crush, “This is a hardcore midnight cult WTF-fest that’s odd, noisy and weird.” Reviews, video and more.
Battle of the Year. Rating: 2 (out of 5). The Olympics of breakdancing called Battle of the Year, held every year, attracts the best teams from around the world. The US hasn’t won in fifteen years. B-Boy Dante (Laz Alonso), a Los Angeles-based Hip Hop mogul, wants to put America back on top, so he enlists the help of his championship basketball coach friend, Blake (Josh Holloway), to train his team. “Battle of the Year” comes to VOD on Tuesday, December 10th. The Hollywood Reporter thinks “The young dancers' undeniable skill and athleticism is squandered in this formulaic, overly familiar dance movie.” Reviews, video and more.
Hours. Rating: 1 (out of 5). Nolan Hayes (Paul Walker) arrives at a New Orleans hospital with his wife going into early labor. The day that is supposed to be one of the happiest turns into one of the worst, as Hurricane Katrina hits and forces an evacuation from the hospital. Nolan and his premature newborn were told to stay in the hospital and wait for the ambulance. But when no one returns to help, Nolan is forced to make life-and-death decisions. The film will be available on VOD starting Friday, December 13. According to We Got This Covered, ““Hours” is one of the most relentlessly tedious films of the year, despite star Paul Walker's valiant efforts.” Reviews, video and more.