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The Meg is Closer to ‘Jaws’ Than ‘Sharknado’

MOVIE REVIEW When Steven Spielberg’s Jaws opened in theaters in 1975, it took the world by storm. Not only was the movie hugely popular as it was genuinely scary, it actually affected society in a strange way. Audiences began to have an irrational fear of sharks even when swimming at a lake. When Jaws 2 came to theaters three years later, everyone knew the catchphrase, “Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water…” Since then, it’s been hard for movie studios to be able to drum up the same excitement with their own Jaws knock-offs. Shark movies became a joke. Even Jaws 3 and Jaws: The Revenge were met with disdain (and with good reason). But sharks are still a popular subject, just not one that we take very seriously anymore.
This brings us to next big shark movie, The Meg which judging from the trailers alone, looks like another campy knock-off movie and while it indeed is campy, it isn’t as much as you would think. When comparing movies, The Meg is closer to Jaws tha…

ABC’s ‘Lucky 7’ is a Winner

(L-R) Anastasia Phillips, Stephen Louis Grush, Lorraine Bruce, Summer Bishil
and Matt Long (Photo: ABC Television)

 TV SERIES REVIEW 

Sometimes advertising can fool you. After seeing commercials for ABC’s Lucky 7 a dozen times or so, I didn’t have much hope for it. While the premise sounding intriguing, how far could they go with it? As it turns out – pretty far.

Lucky 7 answers the question on everyone’s mind, “What would you do if you won the lottery?” with the lives seven people. The seven are employees of small Gold Star Gas ‘N Shop gas station in Queens, New York. It’s a gas station, car repair center and mini-mart. Together, the group has pooled their money together for the state lottery never really thinking that they would actually win. Each of the close-knit group has a circumstance in their lives that would really benefit if they won:
  1. Matt Korzak (Matt Long), his pregnant girlfriend Mary (Christine Evangelista), and son are currently living with his mother and she is driving them crazy. His brother  Nicky, an ex-con, lives there too and works with Matt. Mary swears that she will move out if something doesn’t change soon.
  2. Nicky Korzak (Stephen Louis Grush) has a large, unknown debt he needs to pay off and he has a big crush on co-worker, Samira.
  3. Samira Lashari (Summer Bishil) is a second-generation Pakistani immigrant and a talented musician who dreams of going to Juillard.
  4. Denise Dibinsky (Lorraine Bruce) is struggling with losing her weight and keeping her husband.
  5. Leanne Maxwell (Anastasia Phillips) is a single mother who could definitely use the money, but it not looking forward to the fame as she has some things in her past she is trying to keep hidden.
  6. Bob Harris (Isiah Whitlock, Jr.) is the kind-hearted manager of the station who would like to purchase the station as his own.
  7. Antonio Clemente (Luis Antonio Ramos) is actually the unlucky one of the bunch. To be fiscally responsible, he pulled out the lottery pool months before.

Those scenarios are not enough to keep viewers interested and the writers know this, so they threw in a few other twists to the individual stories as well to keep us all guessing how it’s all going to work out. The show is also primarily a comedy, so you don’t have to take the stories too seriously. However, from watching the pilot, the show has heart as well.
In short, the Lucky 7 team will have to decide if their grass is any greener than it was when they lived on the other side. Secrets will be shared and friendships will be tried and most importantly, the characters will be challenged to see who they really are inside in the weekly morality tale.

Lucky 7, based on the British hit The Syndicate, was written by David Zabel (ER, Detroit 1-8-7) and Jason Richman (Detroit 1-8-7) and is executive-produced by Steven Spielberg, Darryl Frank, Justin Falvey, Zabel and Richman. It is a clever and smart comedy that is also fairly clean and non-offensive. So far. The show premieres Tuesday, September 24 at 10:00 p.m. (ET) on ABC.

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