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‘How to Train Your Dragon 3’ Proves How to Finish a Trilogy

MOVIE REVIEW
While not exactly a golden rule, it is known fact that if a movie does well in the box office, chances are good that it will be followed by sequel and more often than not, we’ve come to expect that the sequel won’t measure up to the original. Add a third movie to the mix and you’re just asking for trouble. With animated movies, the expectations are often even lower. (Is anyone really surprised that the Ice Age movies keep getting worse?) But sometimes, as is the case with the Disney/Pixar Toy Story movies, we’re pleasantly surprised. Now you can add How to Train Your Dragon to that short list too.

One thing that DreamWorks Animation has understood about this series is that the story comes first, the hijinks come later. The very first Dragon movie proved that way back in 2010 with a strong story and with each chapter that has come after it, that story just keeps getting better. What started out as a cute kid’s story has become a powerful trilogy. We've seen these chara…

'Happy Together' is a Weird Concept That Could Work

Review of "Happy Together"
Felix Mallard, Amber Stevens West
and Damon Wayans Jr. (CBS)
TV SERIES REVIEW
Following The Neighborhood is Happy Together, a story about a 30-something married couple who takes in a famous singer to live with them. Jake (Damon Wayans Jr.) works as an accountant to Australian pop star Cooper (Felix Mallard). One night when Jake and his wife Claire (Amber Stevens West) is watching Hulu or Netflix (why would you want to share that on CBS?) they are interrupted by Cooper entering their home. He’s burned out by a bad relationship and fame and would like to go “hiding” in a “normal” home. Jake is willing and Claire is over the moon with excitement having a celebrity live with them. Soon, though, the paparazzi finds Jake and a rumor begins that he is having an affair with Claire. This of course is false, but Jake and Claire aren’t sure if they are ready to live with someone so famous. However, it becomes clear that Jake looks to them as parental figures even though they are only about ten years older, or so Claire says.

The concept is a weird one and Wayans and West try to outdo each other to see which one can be more obnoxious. The writing and the jokes here are poor and the laugh track machine once again is working hard. The only real saving grace of the show is Mallard who is so good as the super smooth, nice and appreciative Cooper. In a sense, it’s the big celebrity who is the normal one here. Happy Together might have a chance to continue on if the show can get its main players to calm down a little. Wayans and West really do play off each other well and have good chemistry together. Again, it’s the last few minutes of the pilot episode that are the best. If they can focus on that, they could have a great show.

Happy Together airs on Mondays at 8:30 p.m. on CBS.

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