So You Think You Can Dance
Season 11
Top 4 Revealed

 

Top 6 Perform
Choreographer: Nick Demoura
Song: “Hide”/NASA feat Aynzil Jones
The Top 6 perform a cool and funky hip hop routine with crazy horror movie-like masks on their faces. It’s actually a pretty cool routine. It uses the music well, and I can spot Casey out of the group. He has such a distinct vibe about him I could spot his dancing anywhere.

 

Sparkly disco ball Cat comes out to introduce the guest judge, three-peat Christina and she tells us each dancer will be performing 3 times. Once with each other, once with an All-Star, and once to solo. And also Rixton is performing…So my major question is…who the hell is Rixton?

 

Routine #1: Ricky and Valerie
Choreographer/Style: Spencer Liff/Broadway
Song: “I’ve Got The World On A Strong”/Frank Sinatra
Performance: The happy-go-lucky pair is back together again and the routine is frickin’ adorable. It’s “twin-girls-holding-cotton-candy-running-down-a-hill-chasing-puppies” frickin’ adorable. That’s how adorable it is. They both really get into character. The swing is a super cute idea and there were some cool moments in it. I love the first time Ricky jumps over the moving swing through the ropes. I love when Valerie throws herself into Ricky’s arms. It’s just a feel-good, happy routine. And Ricky’s shoes are insanely distracting. He’s SO matchy matchy.
Judges: Nigel thought they captured the romantic mood. Christina thought she was pure elegance and grace and Ricky is an enigma. Mary found it light and breezy with honesty chemistry.  Grade: A-

 

Routine #2: Jessica and Casey
Choreographer/Style: Doriana Sanchez/Disco
Song: “Dim All The Lights”/Donna Summer
Performance: I gotta say, it’s been a long time since I’ve seen a Disco routine that’s been this good. Usually it’s a lot of glitz and glamor and flips and spins and lifts and frantic chaos. And while this routine had the first 5 things, there was this cool sense of ease about it. Like they didn’t have a care in the world. It was so much fun. It started out with Casey spinning Jessica around super-fast – I mean seriously faster than normal and it was just uphill from there. I loved seeing the cool disco moves with them dancing side by side. The lifts felt easy and simple (even though they were not) and it looked like they were having a lot of fun out there. I also loved the seemingly abrupt ending. It was just a super fun routine.
Judges: Cat got chills for disco. Mary thought Jessica’s legs were amazing and she loved how classic disco Casey was. Nigel thought it was a lot of fun and he knew how difficult the routine was. Grade: A

 

Routine #3: Jacque and Zack
Choreographer/Style: Jean Marc Genereux/Fox Trot
Song: “Anything Goes”/Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga
Performance: I’m not really that big of a fan of Jacque, so my eyes were drawn to Zack. I thought they performed really well but the dancing overall was just okay. That being said I thought Zack’s actions were bigger and better than Jacque’s but overall I wasn’t impressed with the routine.
Judges: Mary didn’t think it was smooth enough and Nigel wasn’t thrilled with the performance. Christina didn’t feel like their faces came from a genuine place. Grade: C

 

 

Routine #4: Valerie and All-Star Twitch
Choreographer/Style: Wildabeast/Hip Hop
Song: “Yeah”/Usher feat Lil’ Jon & Ludacris
Performance: This song always makes me think of Hitch, but aside from that and Valerie’s distracting costume. I thought this routine was really cute. I love the mixture of classic wedding dances (did she do a little moon walk there on the table?) and I love that she kept her bubbly personality while still getting down and having fun. It looked like they were having a blast out there. I love when the routine was over you could see Valerie checking with Twitch to make sure she did a good job. I thought she did great and I actually watched her a bit more than I did Twitch. That’s a tall order!
Judges: Nigel thought the routine was a lot of fun. He thinks Valerie is a great performer. Christina thought she was amazing. Mary thought Wildabeast brought the beast out in Valerie. Grade: B+

 

 

Routine #5: Jacque and All-Star Will
Choreographer/Style: Sean Cheeseman/Contemporary
Song: “99 Red Balloons”/Sleeping At Last
Performance: It’s a really pretty routine. I love the use of the red yoga ball in the beginning. It really created some beautiful images. It looked so simple yet difficult at the same time. I thought it was really pretty and they both looked good together.  I didn’t 100% buy their love story, but the dancing was spectacular.
Judging: Mary loved the beginning and she thought the routine was gorgeous. Nigel thought she was brilliant. Grade: B

 

 

Routine #6: Jessica and All-Star Ade
Choreographer/Style: Ray Leeper/Jazz
Song: “Boneless”/Steve Aoki, Chris Lake & Tujamo
Performance: The routine looked like it was a lot of fun. It was crazy and it felt almost japanime-like in some instances. Unfortunately I think costume and styling did Jessica a real hindrance. What were those hideous neon green Sasquatch leg warmers on her legs about? I wish she could have just taken those things OFF. And her hair in her faces was definitely distracting. It looked like they were having a lot of fun though and they were into what they were doing. I just wish she was wearing…something else!
Judges: Mary thought the routine was fun, she steals my thing about Sasquatch…Nigel thought the routine was just okay, he didn’t really connect with the routine and Jessica. He also knocks her solo…I know it wasn’t strong but WHAT? Why call her out like that Nigel, seriously. Grade: B-

 

Routine #7: Ricky and All-Star Anya
Choreographer/Style: Jean Marc Genereux/Cha-Cha
Song: “Dare (La La La)”/Shakira
Performance: Seriously, Anya cannot and will not be denied. Girl is gorgeous…and just brilliant to watch. She oozes sexy, and like Ricky says she’s a lot of woman. While she definitely steals the show, I think Ricky held his own. If Mary were to say anything about him, I feel like he needed to get down a little more. Overall the routine was sexy and sultry and eye catching.
Judging: Nigel thought Ricky looked like he had been dancing that style for years. Christina thought Ricky was sensational. Mary thought he was a good lead and took some good control. Grade: A-

 

Routine #8: Casey and All-Star Mackenzie
Choreographer/Style: Stacey Tookey/Contemporary
Song: “Over You”/Ingrid Michaelson feat. A Great Big World
Performance: I actually thought it was quite beautiful. I loved that it was so passionate. Each movement the dancers made had intention and had purpose. I thought the story Casey and Mackenzie told was incredible and I wanted to know more. I really loved Stacey’s choreography in this. There were just some simple subtle dance movements that really caught my eye, Casey running his hand across her outstretched arm, Casey’s turns almost kicking Mackenzie away, the way Casey pushed Mackenzie away. It was very striking and very emotional.
Judges:  Mary thought the movement melted and blended into each other and he had a performance of a lifetime. Nigel loved the story and thought the whole thing made sense. Grade: A

 

Routine #9: Zack and All-Star Fik-Shun
Choreographer/Style: Phillip Chebeeb/Hip Hop
Song: “Sail (Unlimited Gravity Remix)”/AWOLnation
Performance: This routine was like unlike anything I’d every seen on the show. It was really really cool. The movement was so intricate and it was all about the shapes they were making. It was funny, it was exciting, and it was mesmerizing just how cool everything was. Fik-Shun definitely has a happy go lucky vibe about him, and while Zack was more on the serious side (I think he was really thinking about nailing it), I really loved the routine. It made me excited.
Judges: Mary loved it and calls Zack a surprise of the season. (You can see the relief on Zack’s face). Nigel subconsciously insults Zack then realizes what he’s done and takes it back. Christina thinks Zack is a great performer. Cat loves that Zack did his own thing and didn’t try to emulate Fik-Shun. Grade: A-

 

SOLOS

Solo #1: Ricky
Song: “My Tears Are Becoming A Sea”/M83
Performance: Lemme start of by saying, I love it when SYTYCD makes me cry. And seeing Ricky’s Grandma cry over him definitely made the room seem extra dusty at the moment.  Ricky’s solo made me say DAMN. To say it was EPIC would be a severe understatement. Those back kick leaps are freakin’ incredible. I loved his solo and will watch it again. In fact, I’m rewinding my DVR as I write this. Rating: 10/10

Solo #2: Jessica
Song: “I Was Here”/ Beyonce
Jessica’s solo’s are always so full of passion. This solo was a little tamer than others, but she also looked like she was on the verge of tears after her family’s tearful intro package. Though she’s definitely solo’d better, I’m still a fan. Rating: 7/10

Solo #3: Casey
Song: “Lay Me Down”/Sam Smith.
Okay, so first I’m distracted by the fact that Casey’s mother looks Asian. Which means he’s part Asian and it all makes sense now. No wonder I like him. Haha. I just love Casey’s solos. They show so much passion and you can tell he really loves to dance. There’s a lot to see and his song choice is excellent.  Rating: 9/10

Solo #4: Valerie
Song: “What I Like About You”/The Romantics
The blue dress with the black tights, absolutely killer combo. Valerie dazzles in her solo. It’s just so much fun, and goofy, and mesmerizing. I could watch her tap all day. Rating: 8/10

Solo #5: Zack
Song: “Butterfly”/Jason Mraz
I love Zack’s slides. I notice he does them a lot and in a lot of his routines. They’re so fun and cute and they add variety to his performances. The spin at the end of his solo was fantastic. Rating: 7/10

Solo #6: Jacque
Song: “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”/The Andrews Sisters
Her solo was kind of…well…not very special. It was just strange. It didn’t show any personality…and I’m not impressed. If Nigel didn’t like Jessica’s…then he sure as hell didn’t like this. Rating: 4/10

 

My Prediction:
My prediction is that it will be Zack and Jacque going home. No contest the final four should be Ricky, Casey, Jessica and Valerie.

 

Elimination Time:
Casey and Jacque are going home. And WOW that is a shocker I have to say. I mean Casey-wise. I thought for sure he had secured his way into the finals as each performance he has been showing more personality and more skill and dancing his way into my heart.

My Thoughts:
Honestly I think the battle for the winner will be between Jessica and Ricky with Ricky taking it home. He’s been solid all season.

 

Top 5 Performances

  1. Jessica and Casey – Disco
  2. Casey and Mackenzie – Contemporary
  3. Zack and Fik-Shun
  4. Ricky and Anya – Samba
  5. Ricky and Valerie – Broadway

 

Random Thoughts

  • I LOVE the fact that Cat showed a rehearsal clip of Ricky and Valerie’s Broadway routine where her dress gets caught in the swing. It’s adorable and also hilarious.
  • Jessica’s hair in the disco routine is INSANE.
  • Rixton performs. No clue who they are until they start singing. Oh, that song. I actually like it. I guess I won’t fast forward like I usually do during these sorts of performances.
  • I thought the red balloons falling down during Jacque and Will’s routine was a little too cheesy…does that make me dead inside?
  • Anyone else think Christina Applegate is off her judging game this week? She’s not saying much at all.

Final Thoughts
I put in 15 votes for Ricky and 5 for Jessica, though I have to say if Casey were in I would have split it evenly between Casey and Ricky. Next week is going to be so exciting and I can’t wait to see some of my favorite routines. Especially the Jessica/Casey/Travis Wall routine from a few weeks ago. How do you feel about the final four? Do you think it should be Casey instead of Zack? I think the guys were really strong this season but the right two girls are going to the final. Most definitely. As for who will take home the gold? Ricky…I mean come on, it’s Ricky.

 

 

 

 

So You Think You Can Dance

Season 11
Top 8 Perform, 2 Eliminated

 

Being toted as a “A Very Special SYTYCD”, today, the dancers will be paying tribute to Michael Jackson. Now is it just me or does the phrase “Very Special SYTYCD” scare you. I mean we saw what happened with the Very Special Mia Michaels Tribute episode right? I’m also skeptical about the choreographers being boxed into creating performances around only Michael Jackson songs. Sometimes when you have certain restraints the dancing can feel restrained. But I guess we shall see. Maybe I’ll eat my words. Sometimes my words can be fun to eat.

 

Group Performance: Top 8
Choreographer: Travis Payne (MJ’s choreographer)
Song: “Place With No Name”
Performance: Random thought,  Jacque looks like Selena Gomez during this dance, is that a weird thing to say? The dance is cool, and funky, and for the most part they all do the same sharp moves, which is super cool, but also points out all the flaws. Ricky starts out in the forfront as is usual for these group dances, but each person gets their own moment to shine which is nice. Well except for Zack, he doesn’t really get a moment.

 

Cat comes out looking fabulous. I mean seriously fabulous. She looks so chic in that white dress with the cape in the back and the white belt. That dress is adorable! Per Instagram, Cat says that dress is an Alexander McQueen, which means it’s breathtaking as well as expensive…as most things are. The guest judge is none other than Channing Tatum wife. Oh, what she has an actual name? It’s Jenna Dewan-Tatum, former dancer/actress/wife to Channing Tatum.

 

The Performances

 

Solo #1: Tanisha
Song: “Warrior”/Havana Brown
Performance: I appreciate that it’s not the typical ballroom routine. It has some flips and tricks that makes it exciting, and her skirt is amazing. Matte black on the outside, shiny/sparkly black on the inside. It really makes her stand out. Grade: B+

 

Couple Performance #1: Ricky and All-Star Jaimie
Choreographer/Style: Travis Wall/Contemporary
Song: “Smile”
Performance: The routine was really pretty. It was almost as if they were doing a Viennese Waltz but in the air. There were so many lifts it was crazy. But it definitely showed off Ricky’s flexibility and technique. The thing I love about Travis’ choreography is that he always finds ways to push the envelope. When coming down from their lifts, the dancers never just landed straight down on their feet, they always landed creatively, whether it be to the side, into a leap, into a turn. And that movie where Ricky picks Jaimie up and spins her around by her shoulders is really fantastic. I’ve never really been that big of a fan of Jaimie. I’ve never been able to connect with her, but she was great in this piece, even if I focused more on Ricky (as I rightfully should). Nothing was really WOW in this piece, but collectively it was a pretty spectacular routine.
Judging: Jenna thinks this piece really highlighted his extension and it blew her away. Mary says it was perfection. Nigel feels like there were some really difficult moves in the piece but that Ricky doesn’t just dance and excel at it, he transcends it. Grade: A-
Ricky’s Status: Safe, was there any doubt?

 

Solo#2: Zack
Song: “Gotta Get Through This (Acoustic Version)”/Daniel Beddingfield
Performance: I’ve missed seeing Zack tap dance. Though he had a little slip in his solo, I loved how he used the entire stage. He looked calm, cool, and in control and looked adorable in his hat. Honestly, I could watch tap dancing forever. Grade: A-

 

Couple Performance #2: Valerie and All-Star Ryan
Choreographer/Style: Jean-Marc Genereux/Samba
Song: “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’
Performance:  First of all YOWZA! Valerie looks HOT. They gave her extensions, and then a dress with no underwear. Haha, I would be SO scared to dance in something like that. The beginning was definitely a bit awkward, even though she was smiling you could see her dancing the moves in her head. You could see her thinking about it. But halfway through, once they got into the rolls she really let herself go and she became more relaxed. That made the performance much more enjoyable. I don’t know technicality-wise how she did, but I thought she looked great and wore the style well, even if it wasn’t perfect. And I love that she doesn’t pull those cheesy ballroom faces (mouth open, dramatic gasping, looking like someone stepped on her toe), she just dances as herself.
Judges: Mary said she attacked it and if Mary is happy, you know the girl did well. Nigel said Valerie showed us how to dance today. Jenna says Valerie has amazing spirit, but she was also super sexy today. Grade: B
Valerie’s Status: Safe! Yes! I think it was my 6 votes.

 

Solo #3: Casey
Song: “Outro”/ M83
Performance: Casey is definitely a different dancer than from the beginning of the show. He just lets it all go. His solo is so mesmerizing. I love that he’s FINALLY broken out of his shell. Grade: A

 

Solo #4: Rudy
Song: “Warrior”/ Drehz
Performance: Rudy gives a strong, powerful, shirtless performance. The kind that Nigel loves. He shows off his musicality and I can’t help thinking he needs a red cape in his hands. Grade: B

 

Couple Performance #3: Casey and All-Star Comfort
Choreographer: Pharside and Phoenix/Hip Hop
Song: “Xscape”
Performance: I don’t know how I feel about this routine. I think it almost became too much about the concept. Especially in the beginning. It was more posturing, less dancing. But that’s not the dancers fault. That’s the choreographers fault. I have to say Casey was really sexy in this piece. It was a whole different side then we’ve seen from him. The best parts were the parts when they danced side by side. Their chemistry seemed a bit off, but it’s also because they are polar opposites. Casey is more quiet and reserved and Comfort is wild and crazy and out of control so their different styles didn’t really seem to fuse. I’m not sure if I liked it or not. I think if you break it down to pieces and individual performances, I liked it. But as a whole it was lacking something.
Judging: Nigel says Casey is growing so much on the show. Jenna says his presence takes over the stage and she loved his performance. Mary says he was strong and committed and it got better as it went on Grade: B
Casey is: IN THE BOTTOM? What?  (please, please don’t tell me the bottom 2 are Casey and Zack! I won’t be able to pick!)

 

Solo #5: Jacque
Song: “Nocturne in C Sharp Minor, (Op. Posth.): Lento”/Dejan Lazic & Pieter Wispelwey
Performance: She does a ballet solo and I have to say I love it. I’m a sucker for ballet. It’s graceful and sweet. Grade: B+

 

 

Couple Performance #4: Tanisha and All-Star Nick
Choreographer/Style: Stacey Tookey/Contemporary
Song: “She’s Out Of My Life”
Performance: First, is it terrible to say whenever I hear this song I think of the N’SYNC version first? Second, as for the routine, it was quite lovely. I have to say though Nick definitely stole the show. The two didn’t really have much chemistry and with such a great song and tender routine they really needed to sell the chemistry. Nick, on the otherhand is amazing, his leaps, his jumps, and he was winner Season 1, 11 years ago. Think about that!
Judges: Jenna says she loved the dancing, but that she wanted more from her performance. Mary says that Tanisha can do anything. Nigel says she’s such a strong dancer with a great core, but that she needs to show her vulnerable side more.  Grade: B-
Tanisha’s status: In the bottom.

 

Solo #6: Jessica
Song: “Taking Chances”/Celine Dion
Performance: Jessica just explodes all over the stage with her performance. Part Celine’s vocals, part strong dancing, Jessica just has this energy and presence that cannot be denied. So far her solo is my favorite of the night, purely on energy alone. Grade: A

 

Couple Performance #5: Rudy and All-Star Allison
Choreographer/Style: Ray Leeper/Jazz
Song: “Dirty Diana”
Performance: Rudy, I love ya kid, but put you next to Allison and she will eat you ALIVE and she does. Allison just had a completely different energy than Rudy did. She left it all on the floor. Her being my favorite dancer it’s impossible for me not to look at her. I couldn’t keep my eyes off her. And while Rudy danced great and showed a lot of strength, I feel like he could have done more. He didn’t grab me or fight for my attention. And with such a dramatic song and routine like this he really needed to do that. Instead he let Allison overshadow him. He had an outstanding partner, a bad ass choreographer, and a great routine, he just didn’t live up to its demands. I wonder what the judges think since I know they love him.
Judges: Mary loved it. Nigel was invested in the story but felt sometimes Rudy fell out of character a bit. He thinks this routine elevated Rudy to another level. Jenny thinks Rudy held his own. (Upon second glance, I see what the judges are talking about, but Allison still stole the show.)
Rudy’s Grade: B // Routine and Allison Grade: A
Rudy’s Status: Bottom Two

 

Solo #7: Valerie
Song: “Dance With Me Tonight”/Olly Murs
Performance: Valerie makes me happy. That’s all I have to say. Grade: B+

 

 

Couple Performance #6: Zack and Mackenzie
Choreographer/Style: Spencer Liff/Broadway
Song: “The Way You Make Me Feel”
Performance: This song is probably one of my favorite Michael Jackson songs. And it always makes me think of Center Stage when I hear it. While I don’t think his character really exuded cool (maybe he needed a leather jacket or something) I thought he danced it really well. They had a lot of chemistry together and it was just a lot of fun. Though it was nothing WOW, they entertained me. I really want Zack to have a breakout moment.
Judges: Nigel is proud of Zack, Jenna thought Zack had a lot of control and personality. He put everything out there. Mary can feel Zack’s spirit and he’s a pro. Grade: B
Zack’s Status: Zack is SAFE! Yay!

 

Solo #8: Ricky
Song: “Haegt, Kemur Ljosio”/Olafur Arnalds
Performance: You can tell how much in love everyone is with Ricky and what he did in his solo is why. He shows technique, he shows musicality, he shows personality, and he just lights up the stage. He’s very similar to Jessica in the way he just enjoys the moment. There’s a reason why everyone loves him, and this is it. Grade: A-

 

Couple Performance #7: Jacque with All-Star Twitch
Choreographer/Style: Dave Scott/Hip Hop
Song: “Slave to the Rhythm”
Performance: Is it weird for me to say I am distracted by Jacque’s stomach? It’s so toned! Moving along I have to say this routine was pretty spectacular. Jacque was dirty, she got low, she was in the groove, she felt the music. I liked that it was more mature and intricate and it gave her a chance to actually dance and not just act like some of the routines we’ve seen.
Judges: They thought Jacque was having a party with it. Nigel noticed Jacque used different muscles and really challenged herself. She has swag. Grade: B+
Jacque’s Status: She’s in the bottom

 

Couple Performance #8: Jessica and All-Star Will
Choreographer/Style: Mandy Moore/Contemporary
Song: “Earth Song”
Performance: This routine had so many CRAZY tricks that showcased just how strong of a core Jessica has. I mean she was doing some crazy one handed moves that I don’t think anyone could pull off. I love the shapes they made and that danger element with each move. And I love how they’d make one formation, and then it would morph into another formation. It really was quite gorgeous. I loved the move where she fell down Will with one leg out then he picked her up and she switched legs.  And crazy thinking, but Jessica reminded me a lot of Allison Holker in that routine. Performance and acting wise. Does anyone else get that sense? Like she could be the next Allison?
Judges: Mary says what Jessica has been producing is extraordinary. She thought she looked terrific, and outside of the crazy tricks it’s the passion that sold it for her. Nigel calls her one of his favorite performer. She was magnificent. Jenna thinks Jessica is the dancer that pops and flourishes. And it was her favorite routine of the night.  Grade: A
Jessica’s Status: Hello, safe, have you been paying attention?

 

Bottom Four:
Casey, Rudy, Jacque, and Tanisha

My Prediction:
In a perfect world Casey gets to stay. As for the girls, I never really connected with either of these girls, but Jacque may have a slight edge because of the ballet, then again Tanisha has been having strong performances. I don’t know who I’d pick to stay, but I’d be find with either of them going home, is that a weird thing to say. As for Rudy, I love him, but I’ve enjoyed Casey’s body of work more. And I just love that kid as a dancer and performer, he’s really broken out.

 

Elimination
Rudy and Tanisha.

 

My Thoughts:
I think Rudy knew it. He was crying before anything happened. On the tears on his face just breaks my heart. I’m okay with this. I’m glad that Casey gets to stay, but ugh Rudy is breaking my heart right now!

 

Top 5 Favorite Routines

  1. Jessica and Will – Contemporary
  2. Rudy and Allison – Jazz
  3. Ricky and Jaimie – Contemporary
  4. Valerie and Ryan – Samba
  5. Zack and Mackenzie – Broadway

Next Week Who’s Dancing With Who

  • Ricky and All-Star Anya
  • Valerie and All-Star Twitch
  • Zack and All-Star Fik-Shun
  • Jessica and All-Star Ade
  • Casey and All-Star Mackenzie
  • Jacque and All-Star Will

 

 

Final Thoughts:
Zack holding Rudy? I can’t even take it. Is it weird to say I wanted to see more of the dancers comforting each other? Sometimes seeing them cry over each other leaving is what makes me like the dancers even more and I think reavealing the all-stars kind of ruins that moment. Is that a weird thing to say too? I mean I guess it ends the show on a happier note, but give me my drama. I like my drama. Anyway! I’m so glad my favorites are still in: Ricky, Valerie, Zack, Jessica and now Casey. My guess for the final 4? Ricky, Casey, Valerie and Jessica. I LOVE Zack to death, but I don’t think he’s going to make it with the performance he had this week. Can you believe we only have 2 shows left?! Unreal! Until next week my friends!

 

 

 

Michael Bay’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was even more terrible than I ever imagined it could be. I didn’t realize it was possible, but I feel like all the technological advances did this movie reboot more harm than good. I went into the movie expecting to hate-watch it, and I came out of it with longing to see the movie I grew up with. Give me foam, animatronic, Jim Henson puppeteered Turtles over dark, over stuffed, creepy CGI Turtles with Angelina Jolie lips any day!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Directed By: Jonathan Liebesman
Starring: Megan Fox, Will Arnett, Alan Ritchson, Johnny Knoxville, Noel Fisher, Jeremy Howard, Pete Polszek, Tony Shalhoub, William Fichtner, Danny Woodburn

 

 

My review for this movie will be in the form of a list. I’m pretty sure you can get the point:

 

Things I Thought While Hate-Watching Teenage Ninja Turtles
**WARNING **
**There are some SPOILERS ahead, but really, I’m doing you a favor**

 

  • Why do the Turtles have lips? (And they kinda look like Shrek…)
  • Splinter looks terrible. He has a nose like a dog and not enough fur.
  • Why is Shredder a Transformer?
  • She’s been in snow, rain, and sewage, how is Megan Fox’s hair so perfectly dry?
  • Why is the Donatello (the smart Turtle) so cliché nerdy? With the gadgets, glasses with tape on it, smart speak etc.
  • Why is there so much exposition? Like, the entire movie is exposition.
  • Why do the characters tell us what’s happening before it happens, while it’s happening, then what happened after it happens? (aka, man, this writing is terrible)
  • Why didn’t April show the pictures of the Turtles to her Editor to make her believe her?
  • Megan Fox cannot carry this entire movie by herself.
  • Megan Fox should have a stronger side-kick then Will Arnett who only provides comic relief lines.
  • Speaking of comedians, this movie had a lot of them, too bad none of them did or said anything funny: Taran Killam, Abby Elliott, Whoopi Goldberg  were all severely underused.
  • The actors did a lot of screaming each other’s names in this movie. Just in case we didn’t know who was who.
  • Contrary to popular believe, people don’t want to sit in movies hearing about how hot the lead character is every other sentence. Megan Fox is hot, we get it. You don’t need to beat us over the head with it. At least there wasn’t an obligatory bikini, wet shirt, or e-fan/windblown shot to emphasize it even more.
  • The Turtles were her pets? Seriously?
  • Thank GOD, there wasn’t a love story.
  • For a movie not being directed by Michael Bay (it was only produced by Bay) Jonathan Liebesman sure used a lot of Michael Bay staples (same shots, noises, actors…)
  • Liebesman missed the perfect moment for the Turtles to say “Cowabunga” and instead when they did say it, it was cut off and well anti-climactic because the Turtles told us it was coming.
  • More pizza!
  • The movie was at its strongest when the Turtles worked together. And by far the greatest sequence was the snow sequence. I have to say the dark looking Turtles look amazing against the white snow. It was a beautiful palette.
  • Why did the entire reporter plot disappear and not circle back at the end?

I watched this movie purely out of curiosity. I knew I wasn’t going to like it. I knew it was going to be terrible. But I’m a movie buff and I had to watch it. While this movie got the dynamics between the Turtle brothers right, it pretty much got everything else wrong. I know Hollywood likes to remake, reboot, reinterpret, and mess with things in the hopes of making them more modern. But modern doesn’t have to mean louder and flashier. Sometimes I think big action filmmakers forget that…

 

Rating: 1 1/2 Stars

 

“Cowabunga!”

SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE

Season 11
Top 10 Perform, 2 Eliminated

 

Top 10 Performance
Song: “Bang Bang”/Jessie J, Ariana Grande & Nicki Minaj
Choreographer: Jamal Sims
Okay, so while the costumes, and the song were totally distracting. The routine was actually really fun. I felt a little of sensation overload at times, but focusing on individual people Jessica and Bridget really stood out. And Ricky did this amazing spin near the end of the performance what was almost off camera. Also, what in the world was Valerie wearing? Poor girl. While it looked like a lot of fun, I feel like less offensively bright costumes would have made for a much better performance. I mean, seriously. Where are my sunglasses?

 

It’s All Stars ya’ll — and I can’t tell you how excited I am for it. But before we dive in I have to tell I’m a little nervous about the votes being entirely in America’s hands. I wish there were a judges save somewhere in there. Cat introduces Tara Lipinski as the guest judge and I’m interested in seeing what she says about the dancers. I have to say I love it when judges give technical feedback like Misty does, and hopefully she does the same. (Is it terrible I thought for a moment she was Oksana Baiul? Her hair’s so big.)

Cat also announces individually she will be announcing who is in the bottom 4 and who is safe. I don’t know how I feel about this decision. I guess for the dancers it’s a little less pressure off them for their performance. And they can’t dance for their life or solo knowing ahead of time what position they are in. I just feel like it’s going to make for some awkward moments. But I guess it wouldn’t be SYTYCD without it’s awkward moments.

 

Couple #1: Bridget and All-Star Brandon
Choreographer/Style: Nakul Dev Mahajan/Bollywood Disco
Song:Disco Khisko”/Dil Bol Hadippa (Soundtrack)
Performance: I have to say, that performance was so high energy! It’s weird meshing two styles but it actually works really well together. There were some cool lifts in there, and I love the dismount Bridget did after she sat on Brandon’s shoulders. It was crazy ending on a no-hand backflip, unfortunately Brandon botched his. Bridget however did a great job, I thought this style fit her well and she didn’t lose any energy with the tough routine.
Judging: Tara loved how crisp it was. Mary thought they had a lot of spirit and it took so much stamina. Nigel things whatever Bridget does she does with her whole heart. Grade: B+
Bridget’s Status: She’s in the bottom two.

 

Couple #2: Tanisha and All-Star Ryan
Choreographer/Style: Leonardo and Miriam/Argentine Tango
Song: “The Gaucho’s Pain”/Tango Jointz
Performance: I have to say, from the beginning this routine had me entranced. Tanisha was definitely in her element. The routine was sultry, sexy, and other “s” adjectives. The lifts looked effortless and seemed to just blend into the next movement. And they had such great chemistry together. I have to say I really really enjoyed Tanisha’s performance. Girls got skills. And I loved the way her legs would wrap around Ryan almost like she was gumby.
Judging: Mary said she made everything looked effortless. Nigel loved the footwork and feels like she never put a foot wrong. Tara was hooked from the beginning and couldn’t take his eyes off of her. Grade: A-
Tanisha’s Status: She is safe.

 

Couple #3: Emilio and All-Star Jasmine
Choreographer/Style: Tabitha and Napoleon/Hip Hop
Song: “Get Low”/Dillon Francis and DJ Snake
Performance: NappyTabs are at their best when they fuse styles different styles and incorporate the dancers strengths into the dance. With this routine they used the concept to give us clever and fun moments, but also gave a chance for the dancers to shine. And they knew to make Emilio the star. Jasmine has a definite presence on stage, but this was Emilio’s routine. It was high energy with a cool blend of styles. And I really love the tutting sections. The intricate stuff is what really gets me because I can’t even clap my hands on the beat. So…there’s that.
Judging: Nigel says Emilio has gotten so much better in the past few weeks. He loved the tutting section. Tara loved the snake action sitting in the chair. Mary thought he was on top of his game today. Grade: B+
Emilio’s Status: He is in the bottom two.

 

Couple #4: Valerie and All-Star Ade
Choreographer/Style: Tyce DiOrio/Jazz
Song: “Hearts A Mess”/Gotye
Performance: Ugh, Tyce. You make me angry. You didn’t stand for your dancers? What? What? Are you saying you didn’t like their performance? Even if she fell on her face, a choreographer has to  show support to his dancers. Come on man. Moving on…I have to say Valerie really impresses me. Okay, yeah so she could have been a little angrier, a little sharper, and a little darker in this piece, but her dancing has so much improved. I mean she’s a tapper for crying out loud and she looked like a contemporary dancer out there. She worked really well with Ade and it was a different side of her. Could it have been better? Yes it could have, but I still liked it.
Judging: Tara thought the dancing was good, but the performance wasn’t there. Mary thought she’s elevated herself this week, but that she could push herself even more. Nigel thought Ade outshined her. He felt she needed to up her performance. Grade: B
Valerie’s Status: SAFE!

 

Couple #5: Rudy and All-Star Jenna
Choreographer/Style: Louie Van Amstel/Cha Cha
Song: “Maps”/Maroon 5
Performance: You know he looked like he was having a lot of fun out there. He’s performance was better than his dancing, but Jenna ate him alive out there. It looked like she was leading him more than he was leading her. I intentionally tried to focus on him and has dancing and he did have his moments out there. But Jenna definitely outshined him. She just had this effervescence on the stage that couldn’t be denied. Performance great, dancing was just meh.
Judging:  Mary thought they were hot and that Rudy had a lot of power. Nigel loves how full of life Rudy is but warns him to not be over the top. Tara loves Rudy’s joy and passion and calls him infectious. Which he totally is. He leaves his heart out there.  Grade: B-
Rudy’s Status: He’s safe. Which kinda surprises me.

 

Couple #6: Jacque and All-Star Chehon
Choreographer/Style: Travis Wall/Contemporary-Ballet
Song: “Adagio for TRON”/Daft Punk
Performance: Okay first, LOVE the idea of meshing Contemporary and Ballet together. I just think there’s something so sexy about point shoes. Second, LOVE the concept for the lighting (for the most part, see below) and how you could see the dancer’s shadows against the wall. This piece was so gorgeous and so thoughtful and careful. I found myself holding my breath for a lot of the piece. Chehon is so strong and such an amazing dancer out there, I loved seeing him back again. What I didn’t like? The fact that the feet weren’t lit! Isn’t the whole point to the dance to be able to see the foot work? I wish there was just a little more light on the feet so I could see those point shoes in action. Let the dancers dance people.
Judging: Nigel loved the choreography and the lighting and he thinks Jacque brought it to another level this week. Tara thought the performance was flawless. Mary thought Jacque was exquisite.  Grade: B+/A-
Jacque’s Status: She is in the danger zone.
Couple #7: Ricky and All-Star Lauren
Choreographer/Style: Mandy Moore/Jazz
Song: “Bossa Nova Baby (Viva Mix)”/Elvis Presley
Performance: That routine was a lot of fun. And Ricky always just brings a smile to my face. He reminds me so much of one of my friends. This style suited him well, it also felt very Broadway. It felt like a very difficult routine because the song was fast, but they were moving a bit slower than the usual beat. At times they fell out of sync, but overall I really enjoyed it and thought that Ricky shined. I loved the moment he and Lauren shared at the end when she put her hand on his chest and he grabbed it. It was so sweet. Ricky just has this life about him when he dances; it makes you want to watch him forever. And that move at the end with them rolling on the ground intertwining their legs was SO adorable.
Judging: Nigel thinks Ricky keeps getting better and better. Tara thinks Ricky is perfect. Mary says Ricky has the skills and can do anything. Grade: A-
Ricky’s Status: Of course he’s safe. If he wasn’t I may have broken my TV.

 

Couple #8: Casey and All-Star Kathryn
Choreographer/Style: Spencer Liff/Broadway
Song: “Maybe This Time”/Liza Minnelli
Performance: The thing I love about Casey is that I feel like he’s just here to dance. It seems like whenever he talks to the camera or is too much in the spotlight he feels a bit uncomfortable, but when he dances that’s when his personality comes out. And man on man, his personality came out in this routine. The routine started out sweet and simple-like, and Casey was pulling out some great moves. Then there was this breakout moment, where Casey just seemed to shed all the restraint he usually shows and he just let it all out. It was sassy and really just spectacular. Seeing a dancer have that breakout moment always makes me excited. I thought Casey was outstanding and he’s quickly moving up to be one of my favorites.
Judging: Mary thinks Casey is becoming a star. Nigel thinks Spencer found a style that really fits Casey. Tara calls Casey a gentleman and says she felt the chemistry. Grade: A
Casey’s Status: SAFE

 

Couple #9: Jessica and All-Star Twitch
Choreographer/Style: Nappy Tabs/Hip Hop
Song: “U Got Me Up (Underground Goodie Mix ’93)”/Cajmere feat. Dajae
Performance: This routine was so much fun and I have to say Jessica tore it up. I saw a whole different side to her usually sweet personality. She had sass and an attitude and sex appeal. As Nigel would say she danced like a woman. It was a really cute routine and Twitch as always is a great performer. I could watch him dance all day long.
Judging: Tara calls the performance unreal. Mary calls her performance off the charts and her movements were so spot on. Nigel says Jessica is living up to her potential. Grade: A+
Jessica’s Status: Duh, Safe.

 

Couple #10: Zack and All-Star Amy
Choreographer/Style: Sonya Tayeh/Contemporary
Song: “Europe, After The Rain”/Max Richter
Performance: I have to say I could have done without the rain noises. In fact I could have done without any music at all. This piece had such strength to it. I felt as if the dancers were using every single muscle in their body. It was so powerful and haunting at the same time. Even though it was really beautiful I can’t call it there. I can’t really place the word that I want to call it. But it was so moving. There were some definitely WOW moments and I always love it when dancers wrap themselves around each other.
Judging: Nigel thought Zack was stunning. Mary said Zack made her feel something and brought Sonya’s story to life. Grade: A
Status: Zack’s in the bottom. And his tears make me want to hug him. How is he in danger America? He’s so great!

 

Bottom Four
Jacque, Bridget, Emilio, Zack

My Thoughts
How is ZACK in the BOTTOM? Over Rudy? Okay Rudy has the heart, but Zack has the heart AND THE SKILLS. He is an incredible dancer and he gives it his all every time. My vote for who should go home, Jacque and Emilio. But I feel like Emilio is a fave and that my fave will be going home…Don’t Go Zack!

Elimination
If it means Zack being safe, I guess I’ll take Jacque. I really really really wish both Zack and Bridget could have been safe. She’s such a great performer but maybe people relate to Jacque more. Plus her performance today was pretty great. That being said, as much as I like Emilio, Zack deserves to stay and I’m going to vote vote vote for him tonight! Bridget and Emilio are going home…

Top 5 Favorite Routines

  1. Jessica and Twitch – Hip Hop
  2. Casey and Kathryn – Broadway
  3. Ricky and Lauren – Jazz
  4. Zack and Amy – Contemporary
  5. Tanisha and Ryan – Cha Cha

 

Next Week All Stars Pairing

  • Tanisha is with All-Star Nick (Season 1)
  • Valerie is with All-Star Ryan (Season 6)
  • Rudy is with All-Star Allison (Season 3)
  • Jacque is with All-Star Twitch (Season 4)
  • Ricky is with All-Star Jaimie (Season 3)
  • Casey is with All-Star Comfort (Season 4)
  • Jessica is with All-Star Will (Season 4)
  • Zack is with All-Star Makenzie (Season 10)

 

 

Final Thoughts
The night was filled with some really strong performances, but the standouts of the night were definitely Jessica and Casey. Casey is quickly moving up in my book to being one of my favorites. I love that his personality is finally coming out. I’m extremely sad to see Bridget go, but Jacque performed really well tonight. That ballet routine was tough. Also, is it mean to say I think Allison will be totally wasted on Rudy? Yeah probaboly. Here’s how I voted tonight: Jessica – 4, Ricky – 4, Zack – 6, Casey – 6. Ricky is still my favorite, but I figure he’s everyone’s favorite so I put more support behind the other under dogs. Is it next week yet?

 

 

 

 

I never thought I’d say it, but my favorite movie of the year, so far, involves a raccoon with a rage problem and a tree that only says 3 words over and over and over again. I went into Guardians of the Galaxy with high, but skeptical expectations and the movie manage to exceed them. It’s a fun and unpredictable fantasy, comic book movie that anyone who’s a nerd at heart would love. Plus it’s frakkin’ hilarious.

Guardians Of The Galaxy
Director: James Gunn
Cast: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, David Bautista, Lee Pace, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, John C. Reilly, Glen Close, Djimon Hounsou

Guardians of the Galaxy is unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. It feels retro, current, and futuristic at the same time. It’s smart, funny, silly, cheesy, action-packed and full of unexplainable depth. The main characters are developed perfectly which is a big feat because I knew nothing about any of the characters beforehand. The movie did a great job about making you care about these new and unknown characters. Star Lord, Gamora, Rocket, Groot and Drax are a group of criminal misfits brought together by happenstance. They’re strange, quirky, and quick to anger, each with a tragic backstory of their own. And it’s their faults that bring them together to prevent their common enemy from destroying the world.

While the plot itself may not be the most original plot (in fact a lot of other reviews compare it to Avengers, saying it lacks originality and has overlapping themes.) the thing people often forget is that these movies are comic book movies. They’re about good vs. evil. Misfits banding together. Ordinary people doing extraordinary things. It’s why most people read comic books. It’s relatable but also fantasy driven at the same time. It’s rooted in the impossibly possible. Anything can happen. And it does happen. Can you REALLY call a movie involving a CGI tree and raccoon, lacking originality?

There is a lot going on in Guardians of the Galaxy. Stunning visuals, fantastic and colorful set design, and just the cooky craziness “galaxy itself.” At times it can all be sensation overload. But I loved the blending of time and genres and I loved that the movie had a lot of heart. There were moments that made me laugh out loud and other moments that made me tear up. This movie is definitely pushing Chris Pratt into Action Star/Heartthrob/Chris Pine territory. It’s the ultimate summertime popcorn movie but with a lot of substance. And it’s unlike any other movie (Marvel or not) out there.

 

Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

 

 

Random Thoughts (**mini spoilers**)

  • There were so many hilarious and quotable lines in the movie. “Nothing goes over my head. I have great reflexes, I will catch them.
  • I absolutely loved the soundtrack.
  • Interesting articles about Rocket the raccoon. Kirk from Gilmore Girls is amazing!
  • Loved the ending teaser was just that, a teaser. You don’t always need a WOW moment.
  • Got lingering questions? This article probably has the answers.
  • I’d like a Groot of my very own, thank you.

dancing groot

 

 

 

 

So You Think You Can Dance

Season 11

Top 14 Perform, 4 Eliminated

 

 

Top 14 Group Performance
Choreographer: Stacey Tookey
Song: “Last Moment “/Christophe Filippi
Performance: The routine is very serene and as ethereal like qualities to it. The performance really gives Ricky time to shine as he is the forefront of the routine. The girls are wearing waaaay too much skin toner for my liking, but I get it, they’re supposed to be Greek Goddesses. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if Nigel or Mary made some Game Of Thrones quip as they try to stay be pop culture relevant. Again, as I always feel in group routines the camera should always go wide. I’d love to take in the entire routine rather than have parts of it isolated for my viewing pleasure whether I like it or not. I can’t wait for the day where TV watching can be interactive and we can zoom in our out to our hearts content creating our own close-ups. But I digress…

Cat comes out looking great in that dress of hers. I know it’s a little weird and wacky but I like it. I almost get sort of an Asian vibe off of it. Her Instagram tells me it’s a Mara Hoffman dress which makes total sense if you’ve ever been to Anthropologie.

She announces that the Top 10 Dancers will be revealed tonight meaning 4 dancers will be going home. And I can’t believe it. I actually voted last week, I voted for Zack, Ricky, and Bridget with the majority of my votes going to Zack and Ricky. In a perfect world it would be: Brooklyn, Serge, Carly or Jacque or Emily (because those girls are kind of interchangeable to me) and Casey (because despite him being a good dancer, he hasn’t shown any personality).

Today’s guest judge is Christina Applegate who always makes for some fantastic quotes.

 

Who’s In the Top 10
Bridget, Emilio, Jacque, Ricky, Tanisha, Rudy, Valerie, Zack

My Reaction
I’m immediately LOVING IT. It was the right call America, my Top 3 are in, my bottom 4 are not “in” yet. Good call! (I’m a little embarrassed as to how excited I got about the reveal, especially when she announced Zack was in).

Who’s Potentially Out/Bottom Six
Brooklyn, Serge, Carly, Emily, Casey, Teddy, Jessica

My Thoughts
I’m glad we’ll get to see their solos, because it’s been so long. I really hope they do dance with for lives and we get to see some of their personality. It’s interesting to see that the people in the bottom are pairs still. I really hope that Jessica doesn’t get eliminated. I think the girl has a lot to offer and something amazing can happen when she’s paired with an all-star. She needs a Mia Michaels breakdown moment.

 

Couple #1
Who: Bridget and Emilio
Choreographer/Style: Ray Leeper/Jazz
Song“Long Road To Hell”/Avicii
Performance: The routine actually seemed like a lot of fun. But there was something a little off about it. It’s as if their energy levels weren’t matched. Bridget was sharp and tight and slinky, and Emilio was a little looser in his movements. I found myself focusing more on Bridget because she just commanded my attention whereas Emilio seemed to disappear. He didn’t bring his personality into the piece. The choreography was great, it was very jazzy, but there was something off there.
Judging: Nigel thought Emilio was fantastic, but didn’t like what Bridget did. (Nigel, you’re crazy!) Christina is blown away by Emilio. Mary thought the movement suited Emilio…maybe I need to watch the routine again?  Grade: B-

 

Couple #2
Who: Tanisha and Rudy
Choreographer: Mandy Moore/Contemporary
Song: “Seduces Me”/Celine Dion
Performance: Okay first of all, the choreography is stunning. Really stunning. I think Mandy Moore killed it. However, I don’t feel like it was performed really well. They didn’t have much chemistry. I didn’t feel the passion. Some of the tricks felt labored and I really wanted them to dance with such abandon. I didn’t see the passion in their faces, I saw it in some of the movements. They had a couple of moments there where it was really working, but unfortunately I don’t think it was performed as good as it could have been. I mean imagine if this piece had been performed by like Neil Haskell and Melanie Moore, or Chehon and Allison Holker…
Judges: All the judges loved it. Am I missing something here? Am I being too tough? Am I a hardass? Or are the judges super crazy today since all the dancers that have performed thus far are safe.  Grade: B

 

Couple #3
Who: Jacque and Zack
Choreographer/Style: Jean Marc Genereux/Paso Doble
Song: “Dragula”/Rob Zombie
Performance: It was odd, it was cooky, it was crazy, and it was captivating. Just like Jean Marc Genereux. I liked it, I have to say. Though I wasn’t really crazy about the song choice, I thought they danced it was great intensity. Zack was definitely the all-star in the routine, I just can’t say enough good things about him. It was all very dramatic.
Judges: Mary loves that Zack gets into his character. Nigel loved that the concept didn’t overshadow the routine and thought they were fantastic. Christina loves Zack’s presence. Grade: B

 

Couple #4
Who: Emily and Teddy
Choreographer/Style: Warren Carlyle/Broadway
Song: “From This Moment On”/Kiss Me Kate (Original Soundtrack)
Performance: I actually really liked it. It was easy going. It wasn’t too showy. It took me back to those old school black-and-white movies where they couple is just dancing around in the streets. And I just love watching Teddy perform. He has this thing about him where you can spot his dancing from a mile away. He puts such personality into every move he makes. Emily also did a fantastic job, she was slinky and smooth. They were a little off in the end, they seemed to fall out of sync then stumble at the end, but overall I loved the feeling of nostalgia it brought.
Judging: Nigel acknowledges how tough the style was, but he wasn’t a fan of the performance and thought the ending was sloppy. Christina enjoyed it and the style but acknowledges they had some problems. Mary liked the routine, but thought they could have performed it better. Grade: B

 

Couple #5
Who: Jessica and Casey
Choreography/Style: Travis Wall/Choreography
Song: “Like Real People Do”/Hozier
Performance: Travis Wall has done it again people. He took me to another place. I felt like I was watching a romantic indie movie montage where the couple is running through a field of daisies all happy and in love. There were so many great moments in this piece that sent shots of warm fuzzies to my heart when they happened. The jolt Jessica felt all throughout her body when they first kissed. When she went spread eagle into the air as the music crescendo. When Casey swung her around from side to side like. This Jessica was the Jessica that we saw at the beginning of the show. She had this light inside of her that we saw during the Top 20 performance. And that light was also in Casey. He was definitely swoon worthy with this performance. He was so careful, and gentle, but masculine at the same time in the way that he took care of her during this piece. Plus there was one moment in the piece where he had a genuine loving smile on his face. I loved it. It was SO SO gorgeous. Now excuse me while I download this song and rewind the performance to watch it again, with the same goofy little, smitten smile on my face.
Judging: Christina believed everything that was happening in the routine and loved the little subtleties on the routine like Jessica just gasping. (I love everything Christina said about the performance. She’s just so eloquent) Mary loved the jolt during the kiss, and she was sold on it. Nigel called them both magical and said they were high on love. It showed throughout the routine. I love it when judges get so excited about a routine they get breathless. That is how you know a routine is really special aside from the cookie cutter comments. Did Jessica and Casey just solidify themselves in the Top 10? Grade: A+

 

Couple #6
Who: Carly and Serge
Choreographer/Style: Jean Marc Genereux/Quickstep
Song: “A Cool Cat In Town (Aerophon Mix)”/Tape Five feat. Brenda Boykin
Performance: Usually the quickstep is the kiss of death, so hearing they had this routine didn’t give me high hopes for them. That being said Serge was extra bouncy in this routine. He was so light on his feet, I really enjoyed it. Carly was a little heavier with her steps. While the routine was cute, there was nothing really WOW about it, and after the fantastic performance from Jessica and Casey, I don’t have high hopes for these two.
Judging: Mary thought they coped well with the steps. She loved their topline, but thought they could have worked more on their feet. Nigel loved that they looked like they are enjoying themselves. Grade: B

 

Couple #7
Who: Valerie and Ricky
Choreographer/Style: Pharside & Phoenix/Hip Hop
Song: “Turn Down For What”/DJ Snake & Lil Jon
Performance: At first I wasn’t too sure about it. I felt like the costumes and the styling was distracting. I felt like Valerie wasn’t really fitting in and felt more like a Raggity Ann Doll, but somewhere in the routine it just sucked me in. I think it was the leg wave. It looked like they were having a lot of fun, and there were a lot of cool tricks and things I’d never seen in there. It was interesting, inventive and entertaining.
Judging: All the judges loved it and thought it was a lot of fun. Mary thought they had great musicality. Grade: B+

 

Solo #1: Serge
Song: “Wicked Games (Radio Edit)”/Parra for Cuva feat. Anna Naklab
Performance: It’s always hard to judge ballroom solos, especially when it’s male ballroom dancers because most of the time they don’t have shiny outfits and fringe to distract us, but Serge managed to draw me in with his eyes. He was very sexy and was out in full force. Though nothing WOW happened, I got good vibes from it. Grade: B

Solo #2:  Carly
Song: “Not About Angels”/Birdy
Performance: I thought her solo was just okay and I wish she showed off more of her personality. There was something subdued about it. Grade: B-

Solo #3: Casey
Song: “Kiss Me”/Ed Sheeran
Performance: This solo is how solo’s should be. He just looks happy to be dancing and has a completely different energy about his solo than Carly did. He was showed such range and control and was really just a joy to watch. Grade: A-

Solo #4: Emily
Song: “Infra 8″/Louisa Fuller, Natalia Bonner, Nick Barr, Ian Brudge/Chris Worsey
Performance: I loved the story that Emily was telling with her dancing. She had great musicality in the beginning there using her limbs to help us hear the beats of the music. I wish we could have seen just a little bit more, but her solo was elegant and pretty. Grade: B

Solo #5: Teddy
Song: “If I Ever Fall In Love (Original Acapella Version)”/Shai
Performance: He gets bonus points for using such a great (and old school Shai) song. His routine had a lot of personality in it. And it reminds me how original he is when he dances. I wish it was a little more energetic however. Grade: B

Solo #6: Jessica
Song: “Fever”/Beyonce
Performance: I think only this girl could perform a sexy song in a red dress while still keeping her face sweet and not resorting to just rolling around on the ground doing stripper moves. She showed great control and technique and looked cute to boot, but she needed a jump or trick in there to make it really memorable. Grade: A-

Group Routine #1
Who: Bridget, Jacque, Tanisha, Valerie, Brooklyn, Carly, Emily, Jessica
Choreographer: Mandy Moore
Song: “My Immortal”/Evanescence
Performance: Mandy wanted it to be powerful and I think it was. Those girls put their all in the routine and you can tell because they all come out of it crying. I thought it was both beautiful and powerful.
Judging: They judges all love the routine and call it Mandy’s gift for everyone. And you can tell it really brought everyone together, judges, and the dancer girls. Grade: B+/A-

Group Routine #2
Who: Ricky, Rudy, Serge, Casey, Teddy, Emilio, Zack
Choreographer: Travis Wall
Song: “Wave”/Beck
Performance:  I don’t know what they guys are wearing, it looks like something Sonya would put them in. That being said despite this routine being done to such a serene song, it felt so high octane and high adrenaline. You can tell all the boys were going off an adrenaline high after falling off the stage. It was a great routine with some really cool movements and moments. And I really like the juxtaposition of a serene song with some strong, powerful movements.
Judging: They love it, of course they did. It’s Travis. I’m pretty sure he’s a wizard that can do no wrong. Grade: A-
Elimination Time
There’s only 5 minutes left in the show, so there’s no time to waste. It’s time to announce who’s going home. Nigel and the gang save Jessica and Casey meaning Emily, Carly, Serge, and Teddy are going home.

My Thoughts
After Travis’ routine, there was no doubt in my mind that the judges weren’t going to save Jessica and Casey. It was the right call, and frankly the only call. I really think these two dancers will thrive with the All Stars. While it’s sad to see Teddy and Serge go home, I won’t really miss Carly, sorry to say.

 

Top 5 Performances

  1. Jessica and Casey – Contemporary by Travis Wall
  2. Valerie and Ricky – Hip Hop with Pharside and Phoenix
  3. Male Group Routine – With Travis Wall
  4. Jacque and Zack – Paso Doble with Jean Marc Genereux
  5. Female Group Routine – With Mandy Moore

 

The Reveal of the All-Stars
Cat announces who will be paired up with which All-Star. And while I think it was cheesy to announce it with the dancers’ faces on camera I have to say I kind of love the fact that we know ahead of time who is with who.

  • Rudy is with Jenna (Season 10)
  • Jacque is with Chehon (Season 9)
  • Zack is with Amy (Season 10)
  • Bridget is with Brandon (Season 5) (Does this mean he’s off Britney’s tour?)
  • Ricky is with Lauren F. (Season 7)
  • Tanisha is with Ryan (Season 6)
  • Emilio is with Jasmine H. (Season 10)
  • Valerie is with Ade (Season 5)
  • Casey is with Kathryn (Season 6) (I love this pairing!)
  • Jessica is with Twitch (Season 4) (This will be one for the books people)

I’m particularly jazzed about the Jessica/Twitch and Casey/Kathryn pairings. I think it’s just going to make some great TV and I can’t wait to see Chehon and Jasmine dancing back on the stage. They are definitely two of my faves.

Final Thoughts
So come this (Thursday) morning, I have watched and re-watched the Travis Wall routine about 15 times. No lie. I’m pretty sure this episode will long stay on my DVR. I had Alex Wong’s performance with Twitch on my DVR for two years, until I realized (well not realized, more like remembered) there was this thing called You Tube that could replay my favorite routines to my heart’s content. Still there’s something comforting about great dance performances being saved on my DVR. Gotta go, time to watch Travis’ routine again…Until next week, my friends!

 

 

 

 

So You Think You Can Dance
Season 11
Top 16 Perform, 2 Eliminated

 

Top 16 Perform
Choreographer: Mandy Moore
Song: “Take Me To The River”/Annie Lennox
The dance has a total 80s vibe which is pretty cool. Overall it’s a pretty good routine, the dancers dance more as a group than as individuals which I really like. I should have guessed Mandy Moore was the choreographer. Her routines she choreographs always seem to have this timeless quality about them.

Cat comes out wearing an amazing sweater dress. That’s all sparkly and shows of her legs. Really it’s a fantastic dress. I’m also all about that ring. Getting down to business, Cat announces…

 

The Bottom Six
Bridget, Marquet, Brooklyn, Serge, Tanisha, and Zack

My Thoughts
Okay, so I called a lot of these kids last week, but ZACK? What are you CRAZY AMERICA? What? I wish, wish, we could see these guys solo, but alas, the show must go on. My prediction, it’ll be Brooklyn and Marquet going home.

 

Couple #1
Who: Valerie and Ricky
Choreographer/Style: Nakul Dev Mahajan/Bollywood
Song: “Dilliwaali Girlfriend”/Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (soundtrack)
Performance: The dance is high energy, but I actually feel like the style suits Valerie more than it does Ricky. For Ricky, the style seems almost goofy and a little sloppy. Valerie is calm, cool, and collected and she’s taking to the style in ease. That lift they do is very messy, but overall they held it together. I just wish Ricky wasn’t so…bouncy.
Judges: Mary calls the routine full of life. Valerie was beautiful and Ricky was strong. Nigel thought the routine took great energy and they kept it up throughout. Misty realizes how hard they worked. She was continually impressed by Ricky. Grade: B-

 

Couple #2
Who: Bridget and Emilio
Choreographer/Style: Travis Wall/Contemporary
Song: “The Leaving Song”/Chris Garneau
Performance: I’m pretty sure I could have watched a full 2 hours of this routine. In fact, I felt as if the story was just getting started, and I wanted to learn more. There were SO MANY wonderful things about this routine. And if Bridget goes home after this performance it will be a TRAVIS-TEY (see what I did there? Couldn’t resist). Her movements were so stunning, and visually striking. She fully got into character and her sweet demeanor just disappeared. I almost forgot Emilio was a hip hop dancing until Travis incorporated some of his movement into the choreography. The only thing I wish was that there was more light so I could see what was going on. Love the pose when Emilio lifted her up and she spread her arms and legs. Love her dipping down, chest out leg up as he caught her. That took a lot of trust. Love her grabbing onto his leg with her legs and holding onto the bars for support. Really I wish this routine would have continued for 2 more minutes, I felt like it was 30 seconds long. Emilio’s face is so full of emotion when the routine is over.
Judges: Nigel loves Travis’ choreography. He loves how Emilio pointed his toes and is excited about his growth. He thought Bridget was magnificent. Misty thought the choreography highlighted them. Mary loved everything about it. She thought it was really special and Bridget exceeded her expectations. Grade: A+

 

Couple #3
Who: Tanisha and Rudy
Choreographer/Style: Dave Scott/Hip Hop
Song: “Good Kisser”/Usher
Performance: First, that outfit Tanisha is wearing is so distracting. What is happening there? Damn. However, the routine is sexy and suave. They are super cute together. Rudy looked real cool, I love the all black suit. However, Tanisha stole the show with her outfit. The style really suited her and she didn’t over do it.
Judges: They loved the performance. They can’t get over Tanisha. Rudy did a great job as well. Nigel thought the routine suited them and Rudy was able to step out of his usual self. Tanisha, of course, grabbed Nigel’s attention. Grade: B+

 

Couple #4
Who: Jessica and Marquet
Choreographer/Style: Dimitry Chaplin/Smooth Fox Trot
Song:  “I Put A Spell On You”/Nina Simone
Performance: I have to say, I felt like Jessica did a lot of the work there. And she looked fantastic. But I wished that there were more fox-trotty elements in there. It seemed like a lot more leg movements and lifts, etc, but that has more to do with the choreography then the couple. They had good chemistry and they danced it well, but the ballroom element of it was missing.
Judges: Mary thought there were some good moments, but that their technique wasn’t so great. She wasn’t too impressed by Marquet, but thought Jessica did amazing. Nigel didn’t think the routine flowed enough and was distracted by the lifts. Misty thought Jessica was beautiful but that she needs to be aware of her neck. Misty felt Marquet needed to be more grounded in his feet. Grade: C+

 

Couple #5
Who: Carly and Serge
Choreographer/Style: Mandy Moore/Contemporary
Song: “Foolish Games”/Jewel
Performance: Maybe it was the point to the routine, but I felt like Serge was a little careless with Carly, just tossing her around. When she fell she fell heavy and it was distracting. I literally thought “be careful!” There’s a way to show carelessness, while still being in control and I don’t know how in control he was. Carly’s dancing was so fluid and powerful, but I didn’t really feel like Serge did too much. I felt like he could have been bigger in his movements and he needed to show more emotion. I do love to see Mandy Moore back choreographing.
Judges: The judges love them together. And give Serge a lot of compliments, even though I don’t feel all that connected with him as they do. I think he’s growing in his dance, but not quickly enough. The judges however love them. Grade: B+

 

Couple #6
Who: Emily and Teddy
Choreographer/Style: Jonathan Platero & Oksana Dmytrenko/Salsa
Song:  “Bruk It Down”/Mr. Vegas Feat Alison Hinds
Performance:  Teddy brings this energy and personality in his dancing where he could just be doing a terrible job and you’d never know because he has so much confidence. Emily starts out strong, but then somewhere in between she seems to lose her confidence and it feels a little awkward and labored, like she’s just trying to get through it. She seems to be focusing too much on the dancing and not so much on the performing. Don’t get me wrong, the routine is tough, but she made it look super tough.
Judges: Misty felt Emily was uncomfortable and unstable in her footwork, but is impressed with how she recovered from her slip. She thought Teddy was giving her salsa. Mary commends them for dancing the tough routine and thought they got through it. She thought Teddy was feeling it and he really had it. Nigel mentions how Emily dislocated her shoulder earlier today and explains how her feeling nervous probably has to do with that fact. It does explain a lot. Grade: C

 

Couple #7
Who: Jacque and Zack
Choreographer/Style: Sonya Tayeh/Jazz
Song: “Back to Black”/Beyonce feat. Andre 3000
Performance: Zack dances like a man. He is just so strong! I seriously couldn’t take my eyes off of him. I feel like he out danced Jacque and again I forgot about her. I love the move where Zack ran to her and did a sort of hand stand over her, and then sank to the floor. I love how he adopted Sonya’s hunched shoulders. I just love the kid. Jacque honestly could have been anyone.
Judges: Mary loved the choreography. He loves how Zack stays in character. Nigel thought it was an interesting routine, but didn’t feel emotionally connected to it. Misty expected more refinement from Jacque and wanted to see more of her personality. She thinks Zack is fabulous and is impressed by him. Nigel asks her if she’s tougher on the guys than the girls and Misty says yes because the guys are at another level. I agree with her! Grade: B

 

Couple #8
Who: Brooklyn and Casey
Choreographer/Style: Wildabeast/Hip Hop
Song: “Hustle Hard Remix”/Ace Hood feat Rick Ross & Lil’ Wayne
Performance: I don’t know if this makes sense, but they’re both too pretty to dance hip hop. They are way to pretty for how hardcore this song is. They’re trying. They’re hitting it hard, Casey gets a little tired at the end there, but it’s all just a little awkward. Brookyln fits in a little more than Casey does but the style doesn’t suit them as much as I wish it did. I think it has a lot to do with costume and hair and make-up too. They could have been done up dirtier.
Judges: Nigel is not really sure their outfits say hip hop. He thinks they need to get down more. Nigel thought Brooklyn was trying very hard. Misty thought Brooklyn was great. Mary thought it was hard hitting near the end and thought Brooklyn took it up another notch. Grade: C+

 

Group Routine #1
Who: Brooklyn, Casey, Emily, Emilio, Tanisha, Serge, Valerie, Zack
Choreographer: Sonya Tayeh
Song: “So Broken (Live)”/ Bjork
Performance: I really really REALLY liked this piece. It was so brutal, and ugly, yet beautifully haunting at the same time. I felt like they were dancing as the group, they weren’t trying to be showy. I loved the move where they all fell over at the same time. It was really a WOW moment. This piece was subtle and not subtle at the same time. And I LOVE the closing shot on their faces just breathing and being in the moment. This piece left me tense, staring at it through clenched eyes. Cat said it right, it was gorgeous.
Judges: Misty felt like Tanisha was the team captain. Mary called Sonya brilliant and that they were all stars. She loved their passion. Nigel wanted to be a part of the routine because he wanted to experience what it was like to be in it. Grade: A

 

Group Routine #2
Who: Bridget, Marquet, Carly, Ricky, Rudy, Jacque, Jessica, and Teddy
Choreographer: Travis Wall
Song: “Love Runs Out”/One Republic
Performance: This piece has so much energy and it has me from the opening shot. The outfits are super adorable and that sequence in the middle when Carly falls back and forward and back again is super thrilling. I’m so mad the camera didn’t focus on some of the other amazing things that were happening in the routine. Sometimes I feel like the camera is focused on less interesting aspects of the dance. Ricky had this amazing move but instead the camera got it from a weird angle and Jessica was the focus. Sometimes I wish the camera would try less cool things and just showcase the dancers dancing.
Judges: Nigel talks about how the dance was live cut, and I wish it wasn’t. Misty is taken with Ricky and I have to say she’s right. He’s the star in everything that he does. And he’s super adorable. Mary thought it was brilliant. She thought Marquet tore it up in the routine. Grade: A-

 

Top 5 Favorite Routines

  1. Bridget and Emilio – Contemporary
  2. Group Routine #1 – Brooklyn, Casey, Emily, Emilio, Tanisha, Serge, Valerie, Zack
  3. Group Routine #2 – Bridget, Marquet, Carly, Ricky, Rudy, Jacque, Jessica, and Teddy
  4. Tanisha and Rudy – Hip Hop
  5. Jacque and Zack – Jazz

 

Elimination Time
After today’s performances, I still think it’ll be Brooklyn and Marquet’s time to go, even though Brooklyn did a good job today. Nigel tells us next week we’re losing 4 dances. WHAT? What is this blasphemous! Damn you FOX and your cutting down the show. Why couldn’t we have lost 4 dances in the beginning?  Anyway, onto the elimination, the dancers going home are: Marquet and Brooklyn.

My Prediction for Bottom Six
Next week, I think it’ll be Teddy, Casey, Serge, Emily, Jessica, Jacque in the bottom six. At least that’s who I hope who will be voted in the bottom six.

 

Overall Thoughts:
I hope Zack isn’t in the bottom six next week. He’s been killing it and I don’t understand why people aren’t voting for him. He and Ricky are my definite favorites. Also, what was up with Lucy Hale? She’s a terrible singer. I like her as an actress, but country doesn’t suit her voice and she was terrible live. Moving on, I can’t believe we lose 4 dancers next week. Hopefully my favorites Zack, Ricky, and Bridget will be safe. I’d love to see the dance with all stars. Wouldn’t you love to see a Ricky/Allison Holker, Bridget/Alex Wong, Zack/Katee Sheen duos? Until next week!

 

 

 

I missed a week! I know, I know, I know. So, here are my Six Random Thoughts from last week’s only so-so episode.

  1. I was not as taken with Carly and Serge’s performance as the rest of the judges were.
  2. Ricky is still hands down my favorite.
  3. Teddy is a definite character, but he won me over with his performance. He was hitting it so hard.
  4. The Marquet/Jordan routine. Ouch. It was so sloppy and frantic. And I really like Marquet!
  5. Zach may be my second favorite dancer. The African routine with him and Jacque was so great!
  6. I can’t believe Marlena went home over the other two! And Casey and Serge busted it out tonight, so Nick was the right choice even if Nigel kicking him had the same impact as if he had kicked a puppy on live TV. Nicks face may have brought tears to my eyes.

 

So You Think You Can Dance: Season 11

18 Perform, 2 Eliminated

Top 18 Perform
Song: “How It’s Done”/District 78
Choreographers: Christopher Jennings and Krystal Meraz
Performance: I have to say the performance is pretty amazing. The chess theme was super cool, the routine was intense and had a lot going on. It was also visually stunning. Bravo costume department! I’m also loving that it was done by fresh blood.
Bottom Six Dancers
Bridget, Emilio, Emily, Stanley, Jourdan, Teddy

My Thoughts
Um…I don’t understand this bottom 3. Really I don’t. Of this three, who do I want to go home? Jourdan, I guess for the ladies…but for the guys. I really like them all. I guess I would say Emilio? For the love of GOD Nigel, keep Stanley.

 

Who: Zach and Jacque
Choreographer/Style: Keone and Mari Madrid/Hip Hop
Song: “Stay With Me”/Sam Smith
Performance: First of all, the outfits — adorable. Second, starting on the floor with the hand tutts – adorable. Third, the dancers — adorable. Zach is amazing guys. He just hits everything so hard and puts his all into everything. He definitely out dances Emily. But the routine is super sweet, and the look on Zach’s face makes me swoon, even though he’s WAY too young for me. He reminds me of a less creepy Freddie Highmore.
Judges: The judges love it. Nigel loved the choreography and loved seeing them challenged. Nigel loves the way Zach commits to everything he does. Cat thinks this performance reminds her of the Mark/Chelsea routine, but I think it reminds me more of the Melanie/Marko routine.
Rating: B+

 

Who: Jourdan and Marquet
Choreographer/Style: Dee Caspary/Contemporary
Song: “Disappear (Demo Version)”/Mikky Ekko
Performance: This performance was almost perfect. There was just something off about it and I don’t know what. Maybe it’s chemistry. The song was beautiful. I am downloading it right NOW. The dangling umbrellas were super cool. It made the whole thing feel magical. The choreography was beautiful and I can see where Dee was taking it. It’s just something was missing. Feeling. Chemistry. Something. I also feel like the dancers could have been more graceful. I felt like they were dancing in mud. They need to be lighter on their feet.
Judges: Nigel feels like he’s not connecting with these two dancers. Misty also feels like something is missing from Marquet as well. He thinks it’s a lack of vulnerability. Mary basically repeats my judgment on the performance. I’m a genius.
Grade: C+

 

Who: Stanley and Jessica
Choreographer/Style: Tyce/Contemporary
Song: “Funkier Than A Mosquitos Tweeter”/Nikki Costa
Performance: This routine is really unique and it’s a lot like Tyce. It’s a little showy, a little strange, and really memorable. I like this couple. Though I think Stanley and Jessica need to build on their chemistry, if they get it right, they could be fantastic together. Jessica is so amazing; I couldn’t keep my eyes off her. I have to say I really liked this routine. AND it came from Tyce. WEIRD!
Judging: Misty wants them to be aware of being TOO expressive. Mary thinks Stanley gives good air and has moments of brilliance. Mary says Jessica has everything so she doesn’t need to over sell it. Nigel wants Stanley to focus on his core.
Grade: B+

 

Who: Bridget and Emilio
Choreographer/Style: Anya and Pasha/Jive
Song: “Happy”/Pharrell Williams
Performance: My first thought, they’re in the bottom and they have the Jive. Someone wants them to go home. My second thought, the routine is so adorable. Bridget looks so great and she SOLD it. They looked like they were having a lot of fun and it was so bouncy and happy. Personally, I think they killed it. I really like Bridget, I hope she stays, her personality came out and I loved it.
Judging: Mary thinks Bridget captured the energy, and though Emilio has some work to do, he did a great job. Nigel thinks Emilio is growing and thinks Bridget is gorgeous. Misty loves their performance. She thinks Bridget was perfection.
Grade: A-

 

Who: Emily and Teddy
Choreographer/Style: Tyce DiOreo/Contemporary
Song:  “Ne Me Quitte Pas”/Nina Simone
Performance: Can I just say, I was totally into this piece, until I HEAR Tyce yell “YES” in a quiet moment and I suddenly become distracted. COME ON TYCE. Let the dancers just dance. Okay, moving on. The piece was actually really powerful. It wasn’t conventional. It was dirty and frustrating, and took me to another place. Everything was right about this piece. The song was perfect because it took me to another place. Like a French couple fighting in the streets trying to figure if they should stay together or not. Teddy was killing it. He just gets it and his movement is so beautiful. As for Emily, there were moments I didn’t think she was very strong, but then she pulled out some brilliant move or emotion that made me think twice. That ending was brutally gorgeous. I really liked this piece.
Judging: Nigel loved how ugly it was, because sometimes love is ugly. (Sometimes Nigel says very meaningful things.) Misty thinks Emily’s body speaks French. She thinks she was stunning. She thinks Teddy translates into any genre. Mary thinks Emily delivers and was mesmerized by Teddy.
Grade: A

 

Who: Brooklyn and Casey
Choreographer/Style: Bonnie Story/Jazz
Song: “Crazy Little Thing Called Love”/Michael Buble
Performance: This piece was really cute, but Casey brought out way more personality than Brooklyn. I couldn’t take my eyes off him. He’s really a great dancer. Brooklyn kind of disappears and you forget about her. I definitely loved the turn Casey did when he held his leg, I just wish that it wasn’t shown in the rehearsal footage because it’s a WOW moment. I also didn’t feel like Brooklyn and Casey had a lot of chemistry. Casey carried her through this piece, literally and figuratively.
Judging: Brooklyn had some issues, but Casey was on fire. Brooklyn was challenged really hard being out of her style. Brooklyn is going to have to keep up with how great Casey is.
Grade: B

 

Who: Valerie and Ricky
Choreographer/Style: Lacey Schwimmer/Viennese Waltz
Song: “I Won’t Give Up”/Jason Mraz
Performance: Ricky was definitely doing the hard work here, but the piece wasn’t as light as I felt it should have been. Ricky and that dress made Valerie look GOOD, but I felt the dance could have been more floaty. That being said, Ricky is AMAZING. Again a male dancer out dances his female partner. What I do like about this piece, however, is the choreography. It added a lot more technical things into it than just them spinning around the stage. And they had great chemistry. You could see how much Ricky was taking care of Valerie in every step.
Judging: Mary says there are a few technical things they both have to work out. Valerie showed perfect emotion but she has to watch her topline. Nigel loved their performance and felt Valerie came up to Ricky’s standard. Misty says technically Ricky is beyond what the show has seen.
Grade: B

 

Who: Serge and Carly
Choreographer/Style: Luther Brown/Hip Hop
Song: “Senile”/Young Money feat. Tyga, Nicki Minaj & Lil Wayne
Performance: First of all, I gotta say the concept and the choreography were FANTASTIC. There were moments out there where they really looked like dancing skeletons and it was pretty great. Carly knocked it out of the park. She was hitting it hard, she got into character, and she was killing it. I just wished she brought out a little more personality. Serge, while he definitely struggled with “hitting it hard” and his ballroomy-ness came out, killed it in the personality department. He was creepy, he was focusing on being menacing to the camera. I just wished he focused a bit more on keeping the moves sharp. When he danced next to Carly you could definitely see what he was lacking in.
Judging: Nigel doesn’t think it’s a performance that will get votes, despite him knowing how hard they worked. Nigel gets all political in his remarks  – if you didn’t like it Nigel just say so. Misty is impressed with Serge despite his faults and thought Carly was great. Misty politically calls Nigel “old”. Ha! Mary saw how hard they worked and loved the piece.
Grade: B-

 

Who: Tanisha and Rudy
Choreographer/Style: Warren Carlyle/Broadway
Song: “Sing Sing Sing (Part 2)”/Fosse (Original Broadway Cast)
Performance:  I have to say Rudy is looking good in his gray vest and pants. He actually seems a lot more into the piece than Tanisha is. She has one look on her face, but he looks like he’s having a blast. The choreography is exciting and complicated and it brings out the post in their personality and skills. It’s actually pretty un-freakin’ believable what they do. Rudy is a rockstar! And you can see how excited he is about it. It’s so adorable.
Judging: Misty thinks this piece was Rudy. Mary calls the piece a show stopper. She thought Tanisha was on fire, and that Rudy has dance running through his veins. Nigel admires Tanisha’s technique, but loves Rudy’s spirit and thinks he’s magic.
Grade: A-

 

Elimination Time
So okay, after these performances, who is going to be going home is going to be a tough one. Out of these 6 who do I want to see go home? For the girls, it’s an easy choice, I would pick Jourdan. I just haven’t been able to connect with her this time and she’s too similar to the other girls. The guys whoever, it’s a more difficult though, sure Stanley had an off day last week. But he’s brilliant up there on stage. I’m a bit neutral to Emilio even though he has a fantastic personality; however his performance today was one of my favorites. If Teddy goes home, there is something wrong with those judges.

Nigel tells us he’s going with America’s vote as the bottom: Stanley and Jourdan are going home. I guess it was the right call. As hard as it is to say about Stanley, it was a tough choice, I guess I’m okay with it.

My Prediction
I think the bottom six for next week should be Tanisha, Brooklyn and Jacque, and for the guys as much as I like him Marquet, Serge, and Emilio. These 6 are the 6 I’d be okay with going home. Sorry to say.

 

Quotes:

Cat to Emilio – “I love how Serge just slapped your butt.”

“I’ve been taped to a tree before, but not another person.” – Valerie

 

Random Thoughts:

  • When Cat told the dancers to have chins up, immediately I thought of Sound of Music. Don’t know why.
  • When Cat says “duet with the dancers” I think it sounds like she said “do it with the dancers” and I’m twelve.
  • Emily looks like Hilary Duff.
  • Love the fact that Lacey taped Valerie and Ricky together in rehearsal, but girl, can we talk about that hair? No. Just no.

 

Overall Thoughts
This is shaping out to be a very difficult season to call for the guys. All of them are spectacular in their own ways and show a lot of personality. The girls need to step it up. I have a lot of hope for Jessica and Valerie but they both need a break out moment, Jessica peaked TOO SOON! See ya in a couple of days! I promise turn around on my reviews will be shorter!

 

 

One of my favorite things about So You Think You Can Dance is watching the other dancers get so excited about each other’s work and performance. There’s something really special about the way they support each other and Not Vegas, aka Pasadena, was a great reminder of just that fact. At the end of Pasadena, when the Top 20 was revealed, I had my favorites, tappers Valerie and Zack, Marcquet, and of course Jessica (I mean her solo was amazing). Did that remain with the Top 20 Performance? I guess we’ll find out!

 

So You Think You Can Dance
Season 11
Top 20 Performances

 

 

Who: Top 20
Choreographer/Style: Sonya Tayeh/Jazz
Song: “Stalker Ha” by Kingdom
My Thoughts: This piece definitely had Sonya’s signature all over it. It was energetic and it showed off everyone’s stomping skills. I will never understand her costume choices though. Is it weird to say one of my favorite parts of the performance as the end when the kids are just breathing heavily. There’s just something about them all breathing in as one that’s really beautiful.

I have already decided Ricky is my favorite. I think it’s the beard. I hope they don’t make him shave it. It really makes him stand out, well that and his crazy flexibility. I can’t wait to see more. My overall impression of this group, a lot of the girls and guys look really similar. SYTYCD definitely has a type.

Jason Derulo is the guest judge, which is, well strange because this show doesn’t seem like his thing. I know he’s a performer and all, but I enjoy the show a lot more when they hire other dancers to judge…you know…the dancing. Maybe he will surprise me.

 

Time for the Performances, each dancer will be dancing in their own style.

 

Who: Brooklyn and Serge
Choreographer/Style: Dimitry Chaplin/Cha Cha
Song: “Hell Yeah” by Midnight Red
The Routine: I’ve never been a big fan of Dimitry’s as a choreographer. As a shirtless ballroom dancer? Hell yeah. Choreographer, not so much. I’m not a fan of the use of contemporary music in ballroom music, it just doesn’t always work. And Dimirtry is a fan of using strange songs in his routines. I’m also just not a big fan of his choreography. That being said, the couple looks HOT. Serge is STRONG, and as for Brooklyn, she looks great, but I’m distracted by what seems like a label sticking out of the bottom part of her dress. Yes, I’m checking out her butt, I don’t know why. Serge definitely killed this one but Brooklyn needed more strength and control.
Judges: Mary felt that Brooklyn was nervous, but that Serge looked great. Jason thought the routine was steamy. Nigel thought they uplifted the group with their energy.
My Grade: C

 

Who: Emily and Casey
Choreographer/Style: Travis Wall/Contemporary
Song: “All of Me” by John LEgend
The Routine: This routine has me from the beginning with the help of the lighting, the costume choices and the amazing amazing song. But the dancers really bring it. Casey has incredible strength and I love the move where he lifts Emily by spreading his arms and standing on his toes and she clings to him like a monkey. Okay, that didn’t sound very lovely, but it LOOKED lovely. Casey also transforms when he dances. He has this “pretty boy”, “”well groomed thing about him, but when he dances, it all fades away. And his dancing really shines. As for Casey, I feel like she could be a bit more graceful, but then I forget all my critique with that great stretching balancing act. Girl uses every single muscle when she dances from the tippy tips to her toes and fingers. It’s very beautiful.
Judging: Jason is excited and uses great words to describe the dance. It was vivid! And they did tell a great story. I’m impressed Jason. Nigel loves how the choreography fit the music and loves the lengthening of their styles as the music went into falsetto.
My Grade: B+

 

Who: Valerie and Zack
Choreographer/Style: Anthony Morigerato/Tapping
Song: “Sing” by Ed Sheeran
The Routine: I’ll be honest guys, I can barely walk up (or down) a set of stairs without falling. Maybe it’s an inner ear thing, but I digress. What these kids did is so awe-inspiring. Nothing only were they tapping up and down, backwards and forwards, one leg and two legs, but they were keeping an intricate delicate rhythm. And they were in sync. It was quite thrilling. Plus they’re ADORABLE. Valerie has this Ashley Williams kind of thing about her and I‘m pretty sure I could fit Zack in my pocket (even if he is as tall as Cat). The routine was extremely difficult, but they made it look easy and fun.
Judging: Nigel thinks they are magnificent. He thinks their technique is great and they are very likeable. Mary loves the rhythmic conversation and felt like they were teaching her the song. Jason has a tap background (who knew) and appreciates how difficult that routine was.
My Grade: A

 

Who: Bridget and Stanley
Choreographer/Style: Bonnie Story/Contemporary
Song: “Doesn’t Mean Goodbye” by John McLaughlin
Routine: There’s something about Bridget that I really like. I think it’s just that she seems like a normal girl. She’s not over made, she’s just a normal, beautiful girl. She also has great chemistry with Stanley and when they dance side by side together I get goosebumps. It’s so beautiful. Though nothing special amazing happened, the routine was sweet, the dancing was graceful, and the story was compelling.
Judging: Mary loved the “love roll” where they held each other’s heads and rolled on the ground. She loves Stanley’s legs and leaps and loves Bridget’s lightness. Jason said they looked effortless, then asks Bridget to massage his feet…um…awkward. Nigel loved their classic technique.
My Grade: B

 

Who: Jacque and Jourdan
Choreographer/Style: Ballet
Song:  Pas de Deux from Black Swan
Routine: Is it weird I want to immediately dislike Jourdan because she spells her name with a u? Is it weird that the spelling of Jacque’s name frustrates me? Is it unreasonable? Does that make me s vindictive? Okay, just checking. Fortunately, Ilike them more when I realize they will be doing ballet on point. The routine is great, unfortunately they aren’t really together. They don’t have a connection. I know it’s hard and difficult and with time it could have been better but their mistakes were too distracting. Now I admit, I’d never in my life be able to do anything close to that, but I just wish they were a little more together, that would have made all the difference.
Judging: Jason gives us this jem, “That was beautiful, I loved to watch it.” Nigel can’t wait to see what else they can do, but you can tell he didn’t like it as much as he wanted too. Mary loves to see ballet on the stage.
My Grade: C

 

Who: Marcquet and Marlene
Choreographer/Style:  Louie Van Amstel/Brazilian Samba
Song: “Morning Drums” by Gregor Salto
Routine: Marcquet is even more my favorite now that I hear he’s afraid of ants. Why? I can’t really tell you. It just does. And after seeing them dance, I have to say I’m a fan of these too. They just looked like they were having so much fun out there. And that color looked amazing on Marlene. There was a nice build up into their shakes and shimmies and I couldn’t help but smile. The routine was so full of energy and even though I don’t know much about ballroom, their routine was better than any ballroom routine I’ve seeon on SYTYCD. They looked professional and showed great personality.
Judging: Nigel loved it and thought they had incredible passion. Mary loved their “hot rolls” and loved their intention.
My Grade: B

 

Who: Carly and Rudy
Choreographer/Style: Stacey Tookey/Contemporary
Song: “Take It Easy” by Jetta
Routine: Rudy seems like a big goofball and Stacey wonders if he can pull himself together. He knows he needs to get serious. As the routine starts, I can’t help thinking that Carly reminds me of Allison Holker. She just puts everything into her dancing. The routine is really quite beautiful, even though Rudy struggles a bit with the lifts, the windmachine is working really hard to make it all look effortless. And when they dance side by side in sync it is so beautiful. I really enjoyed it. They both put so much heart into it. Cat teases Rudy about how he’s a crier and that makes me like the both of them even more.
Judging: Mary thinks it was really beautiful. She notices that the lifts are a bit labored, but loves his heart. Jason felt that anything was possible watching them. Nigel loves Carly’s technique and thinks that Rudy has room to grow and that he wears his heart on his sleeve.
My Grade: B+

 

Who: Emilio and Teddy
Choreographer/Style: Christopher Scott/Hip Hop
Song: “Night Shift” by the Commodores
Routine: First impression, Teddy is a pretty boy, and he’s a bit strange. I think he’s trying too hard. I also can’t believe he’s a b-boy. That being said, the two boys have a lot of chemistry. The routine is light and fun, and the boys glide around the stage like it’s covered in wax. Emilio shows a lot more personality than Teddy…who I’m still not convinced is a hip hop dancer. He totally looks contemporary.
Judging: Jason runs his joke from the beginning of the show into the ground and beats the dead joke with a stick. He loves the routine and thought it was seamless even though they spent a lot of time dancing apart. Nigel loved the boys’ ability to connect and loved Emilio’s tricks. He also mentions Teddy is not all hip hop and it all makes much more sense to me. Mary loved Christopher Scott’s musicality.
My Grade: B-

 

Who: Jessica and Ricky
Choreographer/Style: Sonya Tayeh/Contemporary
Song: “Vow” Meredith Monk
Routine: Ricky and Jessica connected in more ways than one during rehearsal. Their heads, literally connected. Could they connect in this piece? The answer is yes. This performance was the definition of breathtaking. The music was so quiet, just a woman, singing acapella, a song that sounds similar to the Star Trek Theme, but it was so mesmerizing. It captivated you. It made the piece less noise, serene, subtle. Your focus was soley on the dancers and it was so captivating you couldn’t help but hold your breath. I frankly couldn’t take my eyes off of these two, they’re probably the shortest in the competition but Ricky with his beard had such strength and control, and Jessica’s legs are just crazy special. I do wish this couple was an actual pair because I agree with Nigel, they would have fun away with the competition.
Judges: Standing O. None of them could stop raving about the piece. Jason Derulo was holding his breath, just like I was. Also, you know a piece is good when the choreographer herself is taken aback by the performance and can’t help but say WOW.
My Grade: A+

 

Who: Tanisha and Nick
Choreographer/Style: Louie Van Amstel/Cha Cha
Song: “I’m A Freak” by Enrique Iglesias feat Pitbull
Routine: Tanisha reminds me of an actress who I can’t place right now, but when I do, you’ll totally get what I mean. Unfortunately she has zero chemistry with Nick. I think their high difference was really a detriment to him. He seemed to be struggling a bit and I really want to like him. They both had a lot of energy, but I wish they had more of a connection.
Judging: They don’t really have much to say, which makes me think they didn’t really like it all that much.
My Grade: C

 

 

My Prediction:
I think the bottom three girls will be Jourdan, Jacque, and Tanisha or Brooklyn and the bottom boys Nick, Casey and Serge. Right now, it’s hard to put those guys in the bottom three. I think the guys are really strong this season, but I need to see a bit more personality from the ones that I picked for the bottom. In fact all the bottom 6 I picked need to be able to seperate themselves from the pack. So, who will go home? My guess is either Jourdan or Jacque…and as for the boys? No idea. Nick, I guess?

 

Top 5 Routines:

1)      Jessica and Ricky – Contemporary
2)      Valerie and Zack – Tap
3)      Emily and Casey – Contemporary
4)      Marlene and Marcquet – Brazilian Samba
5)      Carly and Rudy – Contemporary

 

Overall Thoughts:
This is going to be a good season, and I ALREADY can’t wait for all stars. Who wants to see Ricky dance with Alison or Jessica dance with Alex Wong? This girl. My favorites are still the same, but I’ve added Ricky to the list. Oh Ricky…

 

 

Reviews in a Hurry

 

 

Angelina Jolie, MaleficentMaleficent
Directed By: Robert Stromberg
Starring: Angelina Jolie, Sharlto Copley, Elle Famming, Sam Riley, Brenton Thwaites, Juno Temple

Maleficent, by far, is one of the scariest villains in Disney history. As a child, she scared me to death. The dragon, the thorny branches surrounding the castle, the green smoke—she was just creepy and the impact of her evilness is something I always remember even now as an adult.

Now as for Angelina Jolie, I’ve never been a fan of hers. I can’t even tell you the last movie I really liked that she was in. That being said, her performance as Maleficent was the only thing that made this movie watchable. And while the story was well, lame, and the other characters were, well, one-dimensional and boring, Angelina had an over powering presence that was undeniable. She was absolutely mesmerizing as Maleficent, immersing herself into the role completely. She was committed. If only the rest of the movie lived up to her performance.

The movie needed to take more risks, but instead it fell back on the “no one is really bad if you take the time to get to know them” mentality Disney likes to adopt. I’m not saying that message is a bad thing, it’s just you can be evil with a heart and still have a tragic ending. (See Once Upon A Time’s Evil Queen.) Something deeper needed to happen, but instead I felt as if this story negated the entire way I felt about one of my favorite fairy tales Sleeping Beauty, and Maleficent herself.  Rating: D+

 

 

 

A-Million-WaysA Million Ways to Die In The West
Directed By: Seth MacFarlane
Starring: Seth MacFarlane, Charlize Theron, Amanda Seyfried, Liam Neeson, Giovanni Ribisi, Neil Patrick Harris, Sarah Silverman

I like Seth MacFarlane, his dirty humor, his charming good looks, his self-deprecating dialogue…I guess I just understand the man. So his movie about a passive, cowardly sheep farmer, desperate to win his woman back after running from a gunfight, was a winner in my book.

The thing about Seth MacFarlane’s work is that no matter how much you hate the guy, you can’t help but admit that the people who work with him look like they’re having A LOT of fun. And this movie is no different. The cast looked like they were genuinely happy to be there, no matter what ridiculous, hilarious, crude things came out of their mouth. And I have to say Charlize Theron should do more comedy because she was surprisingly on her comedic game, while still managing to class up the movie.

Sure the jokes in this movie were hit or miss, but for every three bad jokes there was one joke that made you laugh so hard you couldn’t breathe. For every cringe worthy moment, there was a moment that literally made you think “yes!” A Million Ways to Die in the West isn’t a movie for the faint of heart. If you don’t like MacFarlane’s type of humor you won’t like this movie. But if you’re in the mood for a good time, jokes that will make you laugh, and a cast that looks like they are having a blast doing ridiculous things, then this movie is for you. And this movie was indeed, for me.  Rating: B

 

 

 

X-Men Days of Future Past
Directed By: Bryan Singer
Starring: Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Hugh Jackman, Peter Dinklage, Shawn Ashmore, Nicholas Hoult, Evan Peters

I am a fan of the original X-Men series. And while the “reboot” movie was excellent and the cast exciting and new, there was a big part of me that longed for the return of the cast. Thus, when I heard Days of Future Past was going to combine the new with the old, or the “past” with the “future”, I was thoroughly excited. The only problem is, after watching the movie, I was more excited and concerned about the future (original) mutants than I was with this pack of newbies.

Wolverine’s present (technically future) consciousness is beamed into his past self in order to help stop the present/future mutants from being wiped out. He goes back in time to convince the younger Xavier that he needs to make changes in order to fix the future. Oh and also Mystique is the key to everything. While I love Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy, the truth is, they aren’t Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen. There’s just something about these two that makes me want more. Throw in two key “don’t-want-to-spoil-it” cameos from though-to- be-lost mutants, and all I really want is to see another X-Men movie with the original cast. Enough of this dual timeline crap.
That being said, this movie wasn’t bad, it’s just my focus shifted and I was left unsatisfied. I don’t know how you would make it better. Wait, I do. Continue with both the past and future time lines but as separate movies. More Quicksilver! More Shawn Ashmore! Bring Wolverine to the dark side and have an Avengers vs. X-Men kind of film….I could go on…but I won’t.  Rating: B-