Costner Swings into Tow—A few new pieces of information about the Kevin Costner film shooting this summer in Albuquerque have leaked out. Swing Vote (Costner’s first in N.M. since 1985’s Silverado) is an indie comedy about a contentious, evenly matched presidential election, which ultimately comes down to a single deciding vote. Costner plays the all-important ballot-caster, a single father. The film is being written and directed by Joshua Michael Stern, whose only previous directing effort (the 2005 psychological drama Neverwas starring Aaron Eckhart and Ian McKellen) was released direct to DVD. Filming is expected to begin on July 23 in Belen and Albuquerque.
Somebody told Hollywood you love penguins. And in a perhaps misguided attempt to satisfy your unquenchable desire for all things penguin-related, the movie studios have responded by providing you (and, by extension, everyone else in America) with a string of penguin-filled films. So far, we’ve had March of the Penguins,Farce of the Penguins, chunks of Madagascar, every square inch of Happy Feet and at least one episode of “Planet Earth.” ... Well, at least they didn’t find out about your love for unicorns.
If the plot for the ruminative new drama Jindabyne sounds vaguely familiar—a group of men locate a dead woman’s body while on a fishing trip—that’s because it’s based on the Raymond Carver short story “So Much Water, So Close to Home.” Carver’s minimalist tale also planted the story seed for one of the segments in Robert Altman’s L.A.-bound anthology Short Cuts(the one with Huey Lewis’ prosthetic wiener). While Altman’s film expanded somewhat on Carver’s story (which doesn’t run much more than a thousand words), Jindabyne runs away with it, taking it all the way to New South Wales, Australia.
It’s summertime, the sun is shining, the flowers are blooming and the television networks are coasting on fumes. So we can’t exactly fault the summer replacement series “Pirate Master” for failing to live up to the legacy that is creator/producer Mark Burnett’s other tropical-themed, elimination-based, million-dollar reality series. Sure, “Pirate Master” is no “Survivor.” Still, viewed from an it’s-hot-I’m-lazy-and-at-least-this-isn’t-“America’s Got Talent” vantage point, “Pirate Master” may yet unearth enough stupid entertainment to rate as a very guilty pleasure.
“NBA Finals Game One” (KOAT-7 7 p.m.) I don’t know who’s playing. But if basketball actually matters to you, I’m sure you do. In which case, you probably don’t need me to remind you about this. ... I’ll shut up now.