Feb 03

The River – Advent of New Age in TV Programming


The River from Oren Peli

While it has become apparent the past years that the quality of Hollywood movies has been going downhill, it seems that the contrary is happening to television. For the past couple of years, we have seen quality television shows, some even featuring renowned movie celebrities. Aside from quality, the genre has likewise evolved into more daring concepts previously seen only in movies. Now, we see several TV series with interesting stories and twists complemented by outstanding special effects. TV producers now realize that giving its viewers the best that entertainment can offer may prove to be more profitable than making movies.

Can we credit “Lost” to this evolution in tv programming?  Maybe.  Nevertheless, we now find ourselves glued to our seats at home while we watch the newest the TV broadcasting can offer.  After the success of the Golden Globe nominated American Horror Story recently with Jessica Lange and Dylan McDermott, the highly anticipated The River is up to prove itself next week.  Produced by Steven Spielberg, The River is directed by no less than Oren Peli of Paranormal Activity and Insidious.  As expected, it will feature found footage camera work made popular by The Blair Witch Project, Cloverfield, and of course, Paranormal Activity.  While more traditional TV viewers may find the found footage style annoying, it does have fans now eagerly awaiting the pilot episode.

The pilot had been recently previewed for the press and most reviews rave about how it kept them jumping on their seat every step of the way.  This put fans of the genre on a frenzy, barely able to wait till the series starts on February 7, 2012.  With just a few days to go, I myself wish the days to fly by faster now.  Anyway, here is a synopsis of the show from one review saying it may be the best pilot they have seen in years.

Famed explorer Dr. Emmet Cole (Bruce Greenwood) went looking for magic deep in the uncharted Amazon and never returned. The shocking truth about his disappearance is out there, somewhere, just waiting to be discovered. To the millions of kids who grew up watching his nature show, Dr. Cole was a hero. To his own son, Lincoln (Joe Anderson), he was more of an enigma. Now, six months after he vanished, Lincoln is finally ready to bury the past when Dr. Cole’s emergency beacon suddenly goes off. At the urging of his mother, Tess (Leslie Hope), Lincoln reluctantly joins her on a search for his father. To fund the rescue, they agree to let Dr. Cole’s cagey ex-producer, Clark (Paul Blackthorne), film the mission documentary-style. The mixed crew of old friends and new acquaintances includes the sexy and resourceful Lena (Eloise Mumford), loyal mechanic Emilio (Daniel Zacapa) and lethal bodyguard Captain Kurt Brynildson (Thomas Kretschmann). “The River” stars Bruce Greenwood (“Star Trek”) as Emmet Cole, Joe Anderson (“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Parts 1 and 2”) as Lincoln Cole, Paul Blackthorne (“Lipstick Jungle”) as Clark, Paulina Gaitan as Jahel, Leslie Hope (“24”) as Tess Cole, Eloise Mumford (“Lone Star”) as Lena, Shaun Parkes (“The Mummy Returns”) as Adjay, Thomas Kretschmann (“King Kong”) as Captain Kurt Brynildson and Daniel Zacapa (“Resurrection Blvd.”) as Emilio.

And here is a sneak peek for tv viewers out there. . .

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