walkingdead

As season four of The Walking Dead creeps towards its close, let’s take a moment to ponder: why do more than 19 million people watch a show about zombies each week? Why do you have to go back to 2008 to find a show that could beat The Walking Dead in the ratings? Compared to other super-powered monsters (like vampires) zombies are pretty pathetic. They can barely even climb stairs. Plus, they’re gross. Did Robert Kirkman, the creator of the original comic book series, dream of the phenomenon it would become?

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buffy1

Here it is, the moment you (and I) have been waiting for: the reveal of my number 1 (not to mention favorite show of all time)! That top spot goes to…Buffy the Vampire Slayer!

Since its inception over a decade ago and the premiere of the pilot episode (the first episode of any series), which aired exactly 17 years ago today (FUN FACT) as of this writing, Buffy, as it came to be known as, lived on in pop culture and its existence has influenced multiple series that came after it. In particular, the popular use of pop culture that was a touchstone of its dialogue and the existence of a “big bad” per season has popped up in other series such as Smallville.

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oscar

On Tuesday, February 25, we had the program The Year in Movies: 2013. It was an encapsulation of the films of 2013 and a little bit of an Oscar preview. Here is a wrap-up of the program:

Based on awards already won, here are the front runners for the Oscars on Sunday, March 2:

BEST PICTURE: “12 Years a Slave”

BEST DIRECTOR: Alfonso Cuarón - “Gravity”

LEAD ACTOR: Chiwetel Ejiofor - “12 Years a Slave”

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nikita

If you have followed this blog series up to this point, then you have probably wondered what that one show was that was canceled in December. It’s time for the reveal…And that 2nd spot belongs to NIKITA!

This sleek and action-packed thriller had it all: Attractive characters, engaging plots (including the subplots), a well thought out and densely plotted seasonal arcs, and lastly, the action itself.

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Sid

Known mostly for his 1950s TV show, Your Show of Shows, Caesar was a comic genius.

Your Show of Shows was so successful and so influential, all of the comedy writers wanted to work for Caesar. And they did…Caesar was known for giving a plethora of comedians and comedy writers their start in show business…including Mel Brooks, Neil Simon, Larry Gelbart, Carl Reiner and Woody Allen. Later, Caesar worked in some movies, including two for former comedy writer Brooks…Silent Movie and History of the World, Part I. He became known with a more modern generation as “Coach Calhoun” in the two Grease movies.

Check out these Sid Caesar movies at the Niles Public Library:

The Busy Body

The Cheap Detective

Grease 2

Grease

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Ramis, who was a comedy movie institution, hailed from Chicago, to which he always remained loyal. He filmed his revered and quintessential film, Groundhog Day, in Woodstock, IL and lived in the Chicagoland area all of his life. Known to most for his acting work in the Ghostbusters films, Ramis’ true calling was as a comedy writer and director…which is where he made his biggest mark in cinema. His early film relationship with fellow Chicagoland native Bill Murray produced such iconic films as Caddyshack, Meatballs and Stripes, in addition to the above-mentioned Groundhog Day. Ramis will be truly missed in the film world and the comedy world.

Check out these Harold Ramis movies at the Niles Public Library:

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angel

Inching closer to the top show, the third spot goes to…ANGEL.

Spun off from the popular cult seriesBuffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel followed the adventures of the vampire with a soul. His mission was to help the helpless in the dank, seedy city of Los Angeles, an area I am quite familiar with. Along with battling actual monstrous demons and vampires, the titular character must also contend with his personal demons as well, repenting all the horrible crimes he committed during his reign prior to the events of BuffyAlong for the ride are a couple of allies, which expands as the series progresses. One of them being Cordelia Chase, the shallow, vain, self centered popular girl from the parent series.

Why should you watch this show?

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oscar

If you feel as passionately about film and the Oscars as I do, join me (Cecilia, Adult Services Librarian) as I review and discuss the best and the worst of Hollywood on Thursday, February 25, 2014 at 7:30pm.

I will talk about the major films of 2013, what the critics thought, and even have some good tips on predicting Oscar winners. I will guess who I think will walk away with the Oscars come Sunday, March 2, 2014 or better yet…what long-shots I would love to see carry awards home.

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cosmos

In 1980, astrophysicist Carl Sagan’s Cosmos: a Personal Journey, opened with this line: “The Cosmos is all that is, or ever was, or ever will be.” Sagan was the world’s most famous scientist during the golden age of solar system exploration. In Cosmos, he invited the world to delve into the history of human scientific discovery. He made the story of 15 billion years of cosmic evolution accessible, exciting, and even personal. To this day Cosmos is the most viewed documentary PBS has ever produced. It has been seen by more than 60 million people worldwide, and inspired a generation of young people to become scientists.

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Schell

Of Austrian and Swiss heritage, Maximilian Schell won a Best Actor Oscar for his role in Judgment at Nuremberg, which as only his second Hollywood film. Never really becoming a megastar, Schell took smaller roles in a variety of interesting and artistic films, though he did get two more Oscar nominations, one for Julia (Best Supporting Actor) and one for The Man in the Glass Booth (Best Actor).

Check out these Maximilian Schell movies at the Niles Public Library:

Abraham

A Bridge Too Far (blu-ray)

The Brothers Bloom

Coast to Coast

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