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TV Wasteland: August Heat
True Blood bows out, while other summer regulars keep on trucking.
By Rob Vaux
August 20, 2012
© Mania/Robert Trate
True Blood wraps up its fifth season this week, Grimm tackles two nights with the same episode, and Samwise Gamgee visits the Creature Cantina. Don't believe me? Take a look
Grimm (NBC, 10:00 PM EST)
Nick's mother lends her boy a hand in taking on the Maucais Dentes, while Monroe and Rosalee hurry to find a cure for Juliette.
Alphas (Syfy, 8:00 PM EST)
The team heads out to rescue an abducted Rachel, which I imagine would piss them off something fierce.
Warehouse 13 (Syfy, 9:00 PM EST)
Brent Spiner and his organization have apparently stolen artifacts from the Warehouse, even as a new one pops up in the hands of an abnormally tough hockey player.
Groundhog Day (AMC, 8:00 PM EST)
According to director Harold Ramis, Bill Murray's hapless weatherman spends thousands of years trapped in the same day. That will seriously do your head in.
Alien 3 (Cinemax, 8:00 PM EST)
Ignore the director. I'm sure he won't amount to much.
Iron Man (FX, 7:00 PM EST)
If the prospect of waiting three years for the next Avengers film -- or three weeks for the first one -- is too much to bear, FX comes to the rescue with the surprise hit that stated it all.
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (IFC, 9:45 PM EST)
"Vell, Zaphod's just zis guy, you know?"
Teen Wolf is off this week.
Face Off (Syfy, 9:00 PM EST)
A new season of the monster make-up show kicks off with contestants having to recreate a creature from the Star Wars cantina. Sean Astin serves as a guest judge.
Collection Intervention (Syfy, 10:30 PM EST)
"Hand over your lovingly cultivated passel of stuff, you nerds! We don't want you to be happy!" Thanks for not reinforcing stereotypes, Syfy.
Cowboys and Aliens (Cinemax, 7:45 PM EST)
The prospect of Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford taking on invaders from outer space in the Old West should have been a knock-out. Instead, it just puts us to sleep.
The Rundown (Cinemax, 10:00 PM EST)
Every time I get mad at The Rock for making a crappy film, I just think of this and smile.
Spy Kids (Disney, 8:00 PM EST)
Many, many people seem to think this Day-Glo nightmare of a family film is actually worthwhile. I am not one of them.
Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen (FX, 8:00 PM EST)
Be honest with me: all these films start to blur after a while, don't they?
Shadow of the Vampire (IFC, 8:00 PM EST)
This uneven art house horror film starts with a great idea -- what if Nosferatu star Max Schrek were a real vampire? -- then adds a terrific performance from Willem Dafoe in the lead. Unfortunately, it delivers absolutely nothing else, leaving us to mourn what might have been.
The Descent (IFC, 10:00 PM EST)
Neil Marshall scores a bullseye with the tale of six female spelunkers encountering a nightmare in an unexplored cave. One of the best horror films of the last decade and a must-see for any genre fan.
Futurama (Comedy, 10:00 PM EST)
I suppose it was only a matter of time before the gang tried to knock over a casino.
Haunted Collector (Syfy, 9:00 PM EST)
Have I mentioned that I want to lock these guys in the basement from Cabin in the Woods and let the monsters go nuts on them? Because I do.
Paranormal Witness (Syfy, 10:00 PM EST)
The gang travels to the Capitol Theatre in Salt Lake City to determine whether or not it's haunted.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Parts 1 and 2 (Cinemax, 7:30 PM EST and 10:00 PM EST)
Cinemax delivers both halves of the Harry Potter finale back-to-back, which I'm betting is the perfect way to view them.
Jurassic Park (BBC America, 6:00 PM EST)
Wait a minute… if I follow this correctly, the tyrannosaurus is actually the hero!
Daredevil (FMC, 7:00 PM EST)
A cool adaptation of the gritty comic-book hero, plus Jennifer Garner's navel. What's not to love?
The Exorcist (IFC, 8:00 PM EST)
Get your spoons ready, because pea soup is on the menu!
The Core (Showtime, 7:45 PM EST)
There are Oscar winners in this. Seriously.
TRON: Legacy (Starz, 9:00 PM EST)
Am I the only one who wanted to see more of TRON in the film that bears his name? A small gripe against a terrific movie, but there it is.
Burn Notice (USA, 9:00 PM)
The problem with stopping a trained assassin is that he might cotton to your plans, and when you head out to some Third World hellhole to ice him, he'll probably be ready for you. Why do I mention this? No particular reason…
The Truman Show (AMC, 8:00 PM EST)
Jim Carrey hits a career high as a reality TV star unaware that his entire life is being constantly filmed.
From Dusk till Dawn (IFC, 10:30 PM EST)
Have you ever heard Cheech Marin's pussy speech bleeped out? It's quite funny… though IFC is kind enough to leave it as the filmmakers intended.
The Smurfs (Starz, 8:15 PM EST)
I suppose we can forgive it for Hank Azaria's sake. Okay, no we can’t.
Outlander (Syfy, 6:30 PM EST)
AKA Space Jesus Will Save Us.
The Fifth Element (Syfy, 9:00 PM EST)
I'm not fond of this film, but I will never get tired of watching Milla Jovovich plunge through two vertical miles of traffic.
Lost Girl (Syfy, 10:00 PM EST)
Bo is asked to stop a potentially disastrous Fae alliance, even as the price of the war climbs ever higher. This one has an ugly ending, kids. Fairly warned thee be, says I.
Jurassic Park III (BBC America, 9:00 PM EST)
Pteranodons are scary… or so this fair-to-middling sequel assures us.
Night at the Museum (FMC, 7:00 PM EST)
Who knew that the notion of a museum coming to life would be so boring?
Puss in Boots (HBO, 7:30 PM EST)
He's great as a sidekick, but not so great when starring on his own.
Fight Club (IFC, 8:00 PM EST)
Edward Norton's character is crazy… which means we can literally believe nothing that we see.
Godzilla (Showtime, 6:30 PM EST)
I think we all need to just lay this inept misfire aside and forget it ever happened.
Real Steel (Showtme, 9:00 PM EST)
It's amazing how far Hugh Jackman can get on pure unfiltered charisma.
Incidentally, Grimm is repeating its Monday night episode at 9:00 PM EST tonight, in case you miss it.
The Destinations of Doctor Who (BBC America, 9:00 PM EST)
The latest Doctor Who special recounts the various eras and locales of the god Doctor's adventures.
Thirteen Ghosts (Syfy, 7:00 PM EST)
Though gimmicky and overly focused on its gorgeous set design, this bloody remake of the William Castle original is a surprising amount of fun.
Haunted High (Syfy, 9:00 PM EST)
Now this is a Syfy original movie: the tale of an evil headmaster who returns from the grave to haunt the school he once controlled. It will be cheesy, stupid and well-nigh irresistible.
Aliens (Cinemax, 6:45 PM EST)
It’s not the director's cut, but it still kicks just as much ass as it always did.
Wanted (FX, 8:00 PM EST)
I applaud this film for refusing to tone down the general asshat qualities of its protagonist. It doesn't always make for enjoyable viewing, but it certainly gives it some originality.
Rambo 4 (IFC, 8:00 PM EST)
Thank you, John Rambo, for showering the screen with patented Lionsgate CG blood. Nobody does it better than you.
Rambo: First Blood Part II (IFC, 9:45 PM EST)
Stay away from politics, big guy. It's not your strong suit.
The Rock (Showtime, 7:30 PM EST)
Crazy Nick Cage, crazier Michael Bay, and Sean Connery somehow holding onto his dignity in the middle of it all. Now that's what I call a party.
True Blood (HBO, 9:00 PM EST)
Season Five ends with Alcide trying to stop JD, and Eric trying to stop The Authority. Knowing this show, it's possible that neither one of them will succeed.
Rambo III (IFC, 8:00 PM EST)
You've got to see it to believe it: uber-patriot John Rambo actually joins forces with the Taliban to defeat the invading Soviets. History plays funny tricks sometimes…
Taken (FX, 8:00 PM EST)
Seriously, just leave Liam Neeson's kid alone. It will be better for everyone.
Aladdin (ABC Family, 8:00 PM EST)
It's no longer a top-tier Disney film. It probably never was.
Raiders of the Lost Ark (Syfy, 6:30 PM EST)
The Blu-ray's coming kids. Get pumped!
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Syfy, 9:05 PM EST)
Yes, even for this one.