Red Widow spins a web of deadly cliches

US broadcast networks have had little luck launching midseason shows this year and Red Widow, premiering on the Seven Network, is unlikely to change that trend.

Bland and toothless, this drama, about a woman who ends up working in organised crime, attempts to meld suburban-mommy drama with a mob story, but fails to come up with anything that’s remotely interesting to watch.

Marta Walraven (played by Aussie actress Radha Mitchell) lives in upscale Marin County outside San Francisco with husband Evan (Anson Mount, Hell on Wheels) and their children.

Marta’s father is a Russian mobster and Evan has some comparatively minor dalliances in illegal activities such as pot-smuggling. Marta has turned a blind eye to any nefarious doings in her immediate or extended family.

Then Marta’s dumb-dumb brother, Irwin (Australian actor Wil Traval), is stupid enough to rip off crime kingpin Nicholae Schiller (ER’s Goran Visnjic), and soon tragedy strikes.

Evan is murdered, and Marta has to beg Schiller to leave her family alone.

He seems to agree that if she does one job for him, she’ll be done, but anyone who has watched TV in the past 40 years knows there will be more to it than that, otherwise Red Widow would cease to exist, as fantastic a prospect as that might be.

There are some clear Sopranos elements on the surface (mob plus family drama), but let’s not sully The Sopranos by granting that Red Widow offers anything more than a glancing, faint echo.

Red Widow is written by Melissa Rosenberg, who wrote the screenplays for all of the Twilight movies before adapting this show from the Dutch series Penoza, but even Twilight, laughable as those films could be, had better-drawn, more-relatable characters than Red Widow.

When Marta isn’t learning how to be a mobster, she’s managing the lives of her children, including primary-school-age Boris (Jakob Salvati), who gets expelled for taking a gun to class to confront a bully. This half of the story is no more compelling than the equally dull mobster-in-training plots.

There are many problems with the show’s pilot, which has a one-hour premiere on July 1.

Evan comes across as the most compelling, conflicted character, and when he dies the whole show deflates. Evan and Marta as a couple prove more engrossing than Marta on her own.

In its first hour, Red Widow flirts with the notion that it has a sense of humour, then quickly dispenses with that in favour of the sobering business of a woman learning the ropes of the mob trade, a predictable, boring enterprise.

Unlike a black widow, which mates and kills, Red Widow seems more likely to bore viewers to death.

  • Red Widow premieres on the Seven Network at 9pm on July 1.
Leon Walraven uit Raalte is nu écht wereldrecordhouder

RAALTE – Hij heeft nooit profvoetbal gespeeld, maar Leon Walraven uit Raalte heeft iets gepresteerd waar een Christiano Ronaldo of een Lionel Messi alleen maar van kunnen dromen. Bekijk ook… Leon Walraven uit Raalte verplettert record voetbal …

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JMP Analyst: Buy Dip In Salesforce, Stock Worth $90
  • Shares of salesforce.com, inc. (NYSE: CRM) have appreciated 10.41 percent over the past year, rising almost to their 52-week high on December 4 at $82.14.
  • JMP Securities’ Patrick Walravens has maintained a Market Outperform rating and price target of $90 on the company.
  • Walravens believes that the stock offers an attractive “capital appreciation” opportunity, given the company’s fundamentals, “tone of business” and the pullback in the stock year to date.

Analyst Patrick Walravens mentioned that there were several reasons why investors should buy salesforce.com, including JMP’s due diligence with industry sources suggesting that the company “had a strong F4Q16, which should set the company up well for FY17.”

Walravens also believes that Keith Block’s promotion to Chief Operating Officer two days after the end of the quarter was a “positive indicator of business momentum.”

In addition, Walravens stated that he was not concerned regarding the pending change in the role of Tony Fernicola, President of Enterprise, since Mr. Fernicola’s change was “100 percent planned” and he had already helped deliver a strong F4Q16.

According to the JMP report, the “Special Event in San Francisco yesterday laid out some new products that should open a number of incremental market areas for salesforce.com, including Field Service Management, a ~$1.3B market, and Configure, Price, Quote, a ~$2.8B market.”

The billing growth estimate for F4Q16 has been raised from 21 percent to 22 percent, while the non-GAAP estimate has been raised from $0.19 to $0.20 on revenue growth of 24 percent.

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© 2016 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

JMP Analyst: Buy Dip In Salesforce, Stock Worth $90 - Benzinga: JMP Analyst: Buy Dip In Salesforce, Stock Worth $90
Shares of salesforce.com, inc. (NYSE: CRM) have appreciated 10.41 percent over the past year, rising almost to their 52-week high on December 4 at $82.14. JMP Securities’ Patrick Walravens has maintained a Market Outperform rating and price target of …

Calgary Food Bank February Events

CALGARY, AB–(Marketwired - January 28, 2016) -

Forest Heights Dueling Pianos
Forest Heights Community Hall, 4909 Forego Avenue SE
Friday, Feb. 5
6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.
After the event became a smashing success last year, Forest Heights Community Hall is hosting another evening of awesome dueling pianos – with revered Las Vegas piano players Van Walraven and Lark Knowles – to support the Calgary Food Bank. Tickets are $25 for the show, and all drink tips and piano donations will support the Calgary Food Bank. Call ahead for tickets and come out for an evening of community, music and laughs!

That’s Amore
Calgary Farmers’ Market, 510 77 Avenue SE
Sunday, Feb. 14
11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
In celebration of Valentine’s Day, the Calgary Farmers’ Market is hosting dueling pianos at the Food Court Stage to benefit of the Calgary Food Bank! By making donations, patrons can request songs from the players. But music isn’t the only entertainment. Market-goers are can make their own edible fruit flowers and capture the moment in a photo booth. Show your love for your community and great music this Valentine’s Day!

Calgary Winefest
BMO Centre, 1410 Olympic Way SE
Friday, Feb. 19 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 20 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Winefest Calgary is back to spoil your senses with delicious food and wine while helping the community! The Calgary Food Bank has been a long-standing charity of choice for this event. But this year, to sweeten the deal further, Winefest will contribute $1 for every pound of food donated, and topping off monetary donations by 25 per cent. Plus, guests who donate are given a food bank prize ballot to be entered to win a $100 Sobeys Grocery Gift Card and two tickets for the Saturday afternoon session for 2017 Winefest Calgary! Tickets are $80 and every sip and sample is included in the ticket price.

Visit our website for more information on these events and the Calgary Food Bank.

This release is transmitted courtesy of Marketwired.

Red Widow stings Traval into action

Aussie actor Wil Traval says appearing in the US suspense drama Red Widow has done “wonders” for his career in Hollywood.

Traval plays the seedy drug runner Irwin Petrov in the Seven Network series that premieres on July 1, which also stars fellow Aussie actor Radha Mitchell.

For Mitchell, she’s taken on the lead character of Marta Walraven, a stay-at-home mum, who is caught up in a drug-running scheme operated by her husband, which happens to also involve organised crime and Russian gangsters.

Traval was hooked on the series the moment he read the script, he says, and will forever be grateful at being cast as Petrov.

“One of the big hurdles you need to get over as an Aussie actor in the US, is getting work on their soil, as they like to see you in an American production,” Traval tells AAP from Hollywood.

“Once you get a job here it certainly changes people’s perception of you and it (Red Widow) has done wonders for me here.

"It was definitely my biggest and exciting break in Hollywood.”

Red Widow was one of three shows Traval was called back to audition for during the 2012 pilot season.

He also tested for Chicago Fire but was pipped for the lead role by fellow Aussie Jesse Spencer.

Despite losing out to Spencer, Traval says being cast on Red Widow was a blessing.

“When I got this job, I thought this is fantastic because this was the script I preferred of the three.

"The character was complicated and morally grey and all those sorts of things, and it was the type of character I really wanted to play.”

Unlike the US premiere, which ran for two hours, Red Widow launches on Seven with a one-hour episode.

Traval believes the 60-minute premiere will be enough for Aussies audiences to get their teeth into the plot lines and also the shady characters.

“I think an hour is great, I think it will work really well and it’s enough to learn who the characters are, where the series may or may not be going.

"It certainly is enough to whet the appetite.”

  • Red Widow premieres on the Seven Network at 9pm on Monday, July 1.

Laços mais fortes para uma vida mais leve…

De acordo com uma pesquisa holandesa publicada pela revista “Child Development”, a criança que não tem amigos na escola pode se estressar com mais facilidade e se sentir sobrecarregada diariamente.

A avaliação foi feita durante o período de dois anos numa turma em que as crianças apontavam quem eram seus melhores amigos e quem estaria mais propenso a sofrer bullying. Sendo assim, o nível de cortisol era medido pela saliva das crianças para verificar o estado emocional de cada uma.

E sabe qual foi o resultado?

Quem tinha mais colegas para contar revertia situações negativas e se sentia mais seguro quando se deparava com algum problema. “O número e a qualidade das amizades podem servir de proteção contra a rejeição”, diz Marianne Riksen-Walraven, autora da pesquisa. Por outro lado, os alunos menos entrosados estavam geralmente mais preocupados e estressados com o dia a dia em sala de aula.

Esse é um dos motivos que nos faz criar e repensar as atividades, as brincadeiras e os eventos que acontecem aqui no Mopi. Assim como estamos dispostos a debater questões tão importantes para a sociabilidade e comunicação dos nossos pequenos da melhor maneira possível.