On Wednesday, "American Idol" crowned its new champion, Phillip Phillips, a 21-year-old crooner from Georgia. However, not everyone was pleased with Phillips' win. After all, this is the fifth "White Guy With a Guitar" to win the reality talent competition, and some critics were tired of it.
"Those attractive, guitar-plucking fellas don't actually do that well once they've ventured out of 'Idol's' protective embrace and are expected to sell albums under their own steam -- and that's a problem for "Idol" as much as for the winners themselves," writes HuffPost TV's Laura Prudom.
"American Idol's" predictable "WGWG" winner wasn't the only thing that got critics snarking. It turns out that "Men in Black 3" didn't bring back the nostalgia that writers longed for. TIME calls the film, "so creaky and out of touch it inspires pity." Meanwhile, one person (literally, only one) didn't quite like Wes Anderson's heavily-praised "Moonrise Kingdom."
Can these harsh critiques all be right? Or should these writers be prescribed some sunshine and massages this Memorial Day weekend? Let us know which critical torpedoes landed on deserving targets and which fell wide of the mark in the comments.
Is HBO's 'Hemingway and Gellhorn' A Waste Of Time?
When you're looking for things to do this weekend, go outside, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/maureen-ryan/hemingway-and-gellhorn-hbo-review_b_1540274.html?ref=tv" target="_hplink">says HuffPost TV's Maureen Ryan</a>, and whatever you do, don't watch HBO's "Hemingway and Gellhorn." <blockquote>Not only is "Hemingway and Gellhorn" wretched, it is bathed in pretentiousness and pseudo-intellectual delusions of grandeur. It's not just crap, it's expensive, painfully "artistic" crap starring a lot of actors who should have known better once they took a look at the script, which is hilariously awful.</blockquote>
Is 'Men In Black 3' Out Of Touch?
Fifteen years ago, Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith were quite the dynamic pair, fighting aliens and erasing memories like alien-fighting, memory-erasing pros. According to <em>TIME</em>, <a href="http://entertainment.time.com/2012/05/24/men-in-black-iii-somebody-get-tommy-lee-jones-a-gold-watch-already/" target="_hplink">the magic is sadly gone</a>. <blockquote>Agents K (Tommy Lee Jones) and J (Will Smith) are back, but the reliable tart and taciturn vs. sweet and sassy energy between them is absent, as if they filmed their scenes independently, acting opposite puppets in front of a blue screen. Their banter is blather.</blockquote>
Too Many 'White Guys With Guitars' On 'American Idol'
Phillip Phillips is the fifth "<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/laura-prudom/american-idol-phillip-phillips_b_1541360.html" target="_hplink">White Guy With a Guitar</a>" to win "American Idol," and according to HuffPost TV's Laura Prudom, that's a problem the show needs to address. <blockquote> Those attractive, guitar-plucking fellas don't actually do that well once they've ventured out of "Idol's" protective embrace and are expected to sell albums under their own steam -- and that's a problem for "Idol" as much as for the winners themselves.</blockquote>
'Chernobyl Diaries' Is A Generic Horror Flick
Something tells us that the harsh critical response toward the "Chernobyl Diaries" is nothing compared to the <a href="http://news.moviefone.com/2012/05/21/chernobyl-diaries-controversy-survivors_n_1533615.html" target="_hplink">backlash its received from the Friends of Chernobyl Centers U.S.</a> However, it's not exactly winning over the critics either. <em>USA Today</em> thinks the horror film is a <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/life/movies/reviews/story/2012-05-25/chernobyl-diaries/55202326/1" target="_hplink">sub-par thriller</a>. <blockquote>There are a few jolts, but no real surprises in this predictable thriller, co-written by Oren Peli, who did a far more effective job of scaring audiences out of their wits with Paranormal Activity. Perhaps he should stay confined to Southern California suburbs instead of exploring the site of foreign nuclear reactor disasters.</blockquote>
John Mayer Is ... Beige?
John Mayer took a few years off to get over his "Shadow Days," but now that he's out of the darkness, it looks like the only color he's seeing is ... beige? Getting called "twisted" by Taylor Swift will do that to you. <em>The Los Angeles Times</em> praises Mayer for his "expert musicality" on his new album <em>Born and Raised</em>, but when it comes to putting pen to paper, <a href="http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/music_blog/2012/05/album-review-john-mayers-born-and-raised.html" target="_hplink">he's just "not a very smart lyricist."</a> <blockquote>Mayer tries to experiment with color here, but as anyone who's ever vigorously finger-painted knows, combine too many colors and you create a single hue. These lyrical scribbles color the entirety of "Born and Raised" beige.</blockquote>
This One Person Didn't Like 'Moonrise Kingdom'
Wes Anderson's "Moonrise Kingdom" has gotten almost universally rave reviews. Almost. <blockquote>"Sadly, Wes Anderson has turned into one of those infectiously adorable kids who grow up oblivious to the fact that what once was cute has just become obnoxious, yet he keeps trying anyway," <a href="http://www.comingsoon.net/news/reviewsnews.php?id=90282" target="_hplink">writes Ed Douglas for Coming Soon</a>. "Who knows whether Anderson is so aware his fans expect certain sensibilities he feels the need to play up to them constantly or if he really thinks this is what movie audiences want to see, but he'll always have plenty of A-list enablers on board to help do whatever he wants."</blockquote> "Moonrise Kingdom" stars Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Tilda Swinton, Bill Murray, Frances McDormand and Harvey Keitel. The film has a sparkling <a href="http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/moonrise_kingdom/reviews/?sort=rotten" target="_hplink">95 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes</a>.
Is TBS' New Sitcom 'Bland And Mediocre'?
Danny Masterson is great in a supporting role. Look no further than Steven Hyde on "That's 70s Show." But when it comes to playing a leading man, Masterson has a lot to learn, <a href="http://www.avclub.com/articles/men-at-work,75443/" target="_hplink">according to the A.V. Club</a>. TBS' new show, "Men At Work," stars Masterson as Milo, whose longtime girlfriend has just left him for another guy. The A.V. Club calls it "<a href="http://www.avclub.com/articles/men-at-work,75443/" target="_hplink">bland and mediocre.</a>" <blockquote>But everybody on the show feels like they've been bought at a figurine shop and unwrapped, then cruelly forced to dance for our benefit.</blockquote>