Archive for July, 2010

Jersey Shore Deep Thoughts: We’re Fist Pumpin’ in Miami, Bitch! (Or, on the Rest of the Season Premiere)
July 30, 2010

Oh lordy, y’all.  So Jersey Shore‘s second season premiered last night, and much like the above image from Videogum of Snooki and Sammi Sweetheart listening intently to their conchs, it was a strange thing of booze-fueled, sh*t-talking, train-wreck-of-zen beauty, and how could it be anything but?  Let’s discuss a few of my favorite moments, shall we?

Angelina’s returned prompted The Situation to deliver serious FACE:

Truer feelings of utter disbelief, total confusion, and SENSE OF IMPENDING RIDICUDRAMA have never been FACE’d.  Well played, The Situation.  Very well played, indeed.

And let’s not forget when Snooki gave a brief dissertation on revisionist history:

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Jersey Shore Deep Thoughts: On Fried Pickles
July 30, 2010

In last night’s second season premiere of Jersey Shore, JWOWW and Snooki took a road trip down to Miami.  Along the way, they stopped at a restaurant in Savannah, Georgia.  I liked this because I myself am a Southerner who himself hails from Georgia; however, I loved this because one of the items on the menu caused Snooki to put on her NOM NOM NOM face:

But what could it be?  Why the Southern delicacy knows as fried pickles, of course.  Ever the consummate pickle aficionado, Snooki had the following to say about this symphony of kosher-dill tastes and deep-fried textures:

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Carla Gugino in Watchmen
July 30, 2010

When you consider how I feel about Carla Gugino in Watchmen, and then you throw in how I feel about fabulous ladies in fabulous glasses, Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema of Carla Gugino as the original Silk Spectre, replete with latex jowls and rhinestone-studded granny glasses, is a no-brainer.  Seriously, where’s the boozy old-lady Silk Spectre spin-off we all (and by “we all,” I mean me) have been demanding?  Hollywood, I smell a sequel, and it smells like cheap liquor and Elizabeth Taylor’s White Diamonds!

Oh, and do be sure to click to enlarge and appreciate the faux-geriatic fabulousness of it all.

This Week in Irresponsible Mad Men Recaps: Irresponsibility Means Never Having to Say You’re Sorry (For Being So Tardy)
July 29, 2010

Well well well, we finally have a recap for “Public Relations” nearly a week after the fourth season of Mad Men premiered?  Looks like somebody has certainly been slacking off as of late, and I’m not talking about Don Draper:

Okay, maybe just a little, but the man’s probably been day drinking, so give him some slack.  I, on the other hand, have no excuse save for the fact that irresponsible recapping–much like love or hating on sweet potato casserole–means never having to say you’re sorry.

Anyways, the fourth season of Mad Men premiered this past Sunday, which means a whole lot of this was happening, particularly when this scene happened:

Okay, I lied.  When Don had The Luckiest Streetwalker in the World (that’s my name for her because that’s what she is) over for a little Thanksgiving stuffing and face slapping, my brain stopped exploding because I was too busy with all the rage strokes.  Seriously, someone in Mad Men gets paid to have sex with Don Draper AND slap him across the face, even though anybody in their right mind (or naughty bits) would do that for free?  There’s only one acceptable response in situations like this:

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Marlene Dietrich in The Blue Angel
July 29, 2010

If I’m going to be completely honest about these sorts of things, I must admit that my first introduction to Marlene Dietrich–and naturally the beginning of my obsession–didn’t come from Dietrich and director Josef von Sternberg’s first film together, The Blue Angel.  Hell, I can’t even claim to have come around when I saw her infamous same-sex kiss in von Sternberg’s Morocco, which forever boggles my mind that they were able to get Dietrich in a tuxedo kissing another woman past the censors in 1930, during an in-class screening of The Celluloid Closet.  No no, I first swooned for Marlene Dietrich thanks to a Mercedes Benz, this Mercedes Benz commercial to be exact:

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Happy Birthday, Elizabeth Berkley!
July 28, 2010

I hope it doesn’t suck!  Oh, who am I kidding?  It’ll be better than a 10-inch dick, and you know it!

Today’s Fabulous Image(s) in Cinema: Julia Ormond in I Know Who Killed Me
July 27, 2010

I don’t know what persuaded Julia Ormond to get on board the Hot Mess Express and play Lindsay Lohan’s mother in the thriller/slasher/torture porn/masterpiece that is I Know Who Killed, but I do know I’m forever happy she did.  Without her commitment to the craft, the line “This is Mr. Jervis” would be a line about a teddy bear like any other; instead, Julia Ormond makes it one of the most dazzling, mind-bogglingly bizarre things I’ve ever seen committed to film.  I mean, what in the world is she doing with her voice?  And what’s going on with her face?  No, seriously:

Pure FACE poetry is what’s going on with her face, y’all.

Sure, it’s all too easy to take a line delivered to the girl you believe is your only daughter–the daughter who’s been abducted by a serial killer, lost portions of her arm and leg through a brutal amputation process that involves dry ice and blue glass surgical utensils (don’t ask), and somehow managed to escape–like a she’s just gone through a serious trauma (so, you know, like a normal person), but it takes a special caliber of actor to play that line like you’re in the midst of an exorcism, and that caliber is BRILLIANT.  Lindsay Lohan’s reaction shot pretty much sums it up:

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Katharine Hepburn in Bringing Up Baby
July 26, 2010

Nothing puts me in the mood to caterwaul “DAAAVID!” quite like the delightfully crazy-eyed focus that Katharine Hepburn brings as she attempts to pop an olive into her mouth while wearing one of the most decidedly bonkers veils I’ve ever seen in my all-time favorite screwball comedy, Bringing Up Baby.  I mean, have you seen the masthead?  I wasn’t simply punning on Dirty Dancing, y’all.  No no, think of the masthead as  a multi-layered, metatexual tapestry of terrible punnage that looks like a four-headed ouroboros (one for each of the leading ladies in Sex and the City 2).  Seriously, I’m not sure anything will ever be as egregious as the one-two pun(ch) of “Abu Dhabi Doo!” and “Lawrence of my labia,” and it should probably remain unknown if such a pun exists, but much like Judy Garland or Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant in the following clip from Bringing Up Bay:

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Who Doesn’t Love Sally Draper?
July 24, 2010

I mean, here’s actress Kiernan Shipka from a photo shoot a for a recent piece about high fashions and the child actresses lucky enough to wear them in Interview:

kiernan shipka sally draper

And here she is in a video interview where she calls Betty Draper “evil,” casually refers to Elisabeth Moss as “Lizzie,” and also makes mention to the fact that’s she’s apparently going to throw a tantrum in the season premiere of Mad Men, which is news so exciting my head just exploded:

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Miranda July’s Pink Shoes in Me and You and Everyone We Know
July 23, 2010

I recognize that Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema isn’t the sort of fabulous we’re used to dealing with over at this particular corner of the internet, but Dictionary.com does define fabulous as “extremely pleasing or successful,” and the fact of the matter is that the moment when Miranda July (who also wrote and directed the remarkable and sublime Me and You and Everyone We Know) makes a video piece in which  her two pinks shoes eloquently pantomime the ways we try and connect with each other is indeed extremely pleasing (aesthetically) and successful (at making me want to give Miranda July a hug), so you know what?  Yes, this image is fabulous.

Oh, and do be sure to click to enlarge and appreciate the ))<>(( forever fabulousness of it all.

Today’s Hard-Hitting Question: Who Do I Write Like?
July 22, 2010

So by now I imagine we’ve all come across that little corner of the internet where you can have your writing analyzed and compared to famous authors throughout the ages, the one that’s aptly named I Write Like.  After all, nothing gives your ego a reach around quite like being told you’re like the next Charles Dickens, but only if you like it old and dusty like that.  From what I can tell, some sort of algorithm breaks down things like sentence structure and punctuation, which basically means the Robot Apocalypse is going to be even worse than we could imagine because it’s a pretentious asshole who’s working on his Master’s in Comp Lit.

ANYWAYS, my mother keeps telling me to “write the book,” so I decided to throw a recent post on Lana Turner into this thing and see what my book would look like:

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

HA, that’s rich.  Don’t get me wrong.  I’ve heard David Foster Wallace is an amazing writer, and I know a lot of people who were really torn up by his untimely passing, and one day I plan on carrying around a hardcover copy of Jacqueline Susann’s Valley of the Dolls with the dust jacket for Infinite Jest on it so people will think I’m sophisticated or hip (as opposed to low-brow and helplessly gay) when they see me on the subway, but I seriously doubt people are like, “Oh, that kid who writes Nobody Puts Baby in a Horner is totes the next David Foster Wallace,” and if I really am, literary agents need to start recognizing IMMEDIATELY.  Obviously this thing must be busted, so let’s try another piece, and this time it’ll be about the all new season for the Mad Men avatar generator:

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

AGAIN?!?  Could it be that I’m actually doing something right, and that things that read like the barely lucid caterwauling of a homeless nance are also things that warrant critical accolades and literary awards?  If the third time’s the talent charm, let’s just test one final sample before we put the savant back in idiot savant, shall we?  Don’t fail me now, post about that fabulous L.A. Times Magazine Christina Hendrick profile:

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Fiona Shaw in The Black Dahlia
July 22, 2010

A few years back,I gushed to my mother about what a steal it was when I dropped $5 for a used copy of The Black Dahlia from a nearby Blockbuster.  I went on and on and on about how bad it was, and finally mother stopped me and asked, “Why would you even want to spend $5 dollars on it then?”  I guess that’s a reasonable question (for other people), so consider the above image of Fiona Shaw delivering a perfectly executed side-eye just before sipping her martini my argument for The Black Dahlia being five of my best-spent dollars.

Seriously, when it comes to performances, The Black Dahlia is by and large one of the most baffling experiences of all time.  Most everyone seems to be aiming for ’40s-film-noir only to achieve awkward-and-forced-like-bad-pulp-dialogue, Hilary Swank looks absolutely nothing like “that dead girl” despite Scarlett Johansson having a line of dialogue that explicitly insists otherwise, and then there’s Fiona Shaw.  She plays Hilary Swank’s wealthy boozehound of a mother, Ramona Linscott, and she’s incredible.  I’m not entirely certain what–if any–direction Brian DePalma gave her because her performance is from a completely different movie about a batshit crazy drunk who won’t take anybody’s sass.  She’s like Carla Gugino in Watchmen, lighting up the screen and warming the camp-adoring cockles of our hearts with each slurred word and wildly over-exaggerated gesticulation.  For example, a less inspired actress would probably sloppily eat the pot roast in this scene, but not Fiona Shaw:

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Today’s (Much Belated) Fabulous Image in Cinema: Cate Blanchett in Notes on a Scandal
July 21, 2010

When things get quiet over at this particular corner of the internet, the reality is there’s only person we have to blame, and that person is me.  The only problem with this is that I’m a blame shifter, so when things get quiet over at this particular corner of the internet (at least this time around), it’s Christopher Nolan’s fault.  Seriously, he’s the man behind Inception, and I’m merely the owner of the mind that movie melted, which mean he’s the one who committed the mind crime!  (Get it?!?)  Besides, Joseph Gordon Levitt looking positively dapper (or do I mean Draper?) in a suit and vest will muddle your brain for days like that.  Oh, and the Mad Men Fever obviously isn’t helping my crazy, either.  Anyways, we’re not here to talk about Inception (YET); we’re here to talk about Today’s (much belated) Fabulous Image in Cinema, and Today’s (much belated) Fabulous Image in Cinema is from Notes on a Scandal, so let’s talk about it.

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Lana Turner in Peyton Place
July 15, 2010

The first time I saw this particularly melodramatic moment from Mark Robson’s 1957 adaptation of Grace Metalious’s notorious novel Peyton Place, I found myself marveling at how much emotional anguish she projects through her hands.  She grasps at the railing as if it its physicality were the only thing allowing her to hold down her emotions; however, since this is a melodrama we’re talking about, of course Lana has to sink to the stairs and sob as she clutches to the posts, which is the sort of thing that reduces me to a haphazard assortment of gay male stereotypes.  That’s just how these things how these things work, and you can’t brush them off as cheap cliche when they play out so exquisitely.

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Since The Sorcerer’s Apprentice Comes Out Today, Here’s the Great Work of Art to Feature Nicolas Cage in 2010
July 14, 2010

So The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is coming out today, and while I wouldn’t say it looks bad, it also doesn’t particularly good, and it definitely doesn’t look like Knowing:

See what I mean?  Kind of meh, but maybe that’s just me, and I digress.

The reviews have been coming in over the past few days, and they aren’t too favorable.  Right now, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is sitting at a rather unfortunate 35% over at Rotten Tomatoes, and the consensus with RT’s list of Top Critics is like taking a Chinatown bus from Badtown to Worseville:

Obviously this isn’t the impressively bleak 15% Knowing received last spring, which is sad because I probably won’t enjoy The Sorcerer’s Apprentice nearly as much Knowing, but equally obvious is the fact that I will inevitably see this at some point anyways.  After all, that’s why the intewebs gave us Cageflix.

ANYWAYS, good or bad or deliciously awful, the one thing for certain about The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is that it is by no means THE work of art to feature Nicolas Cage in 2010.  No no, that accolade belongs to Brandon Bird’s Uncanny Valley, which you probably have never heard of, and that’s precisely why you need to change your ig’nant ways:

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Nobody Puts Baby in a Horner’s Amateur PR Corner: Angry Mel Gibson Edition
July 14, 2010

Once upon a time, when Mel Gibson would get angry, things had a tendency to get hilarious:

sugar tits

Sugar tits?  Sugar tits.  You gotta love it.

Sure, it’s vulgar and demeaning to women, and I’m hardly saying misogyny is ever defensible, but you also get the feeling that he intended it as some sort of sweet talk, in which case he might as well start quoting Showgirls instead of love sonnets.  Besides, that phrase is positively quaint when you consider the nightmarish word garbage that makes up first, second, third, or fourth (and most likely more TK!) recorded rants directed at his wife, Oksana Grigorieva.  Seriously, nothing punctuates a Hallmark greeting card quite like “Sugar Tits,” though you’ve gotta admit that “I should’ve woken you up and said f*cking blow me, bitch!  I should’ve f*ckin’ woken you up and said blow me!  You would’ve liked that better, yeah?  But you need the goddamn sleep!” makes a great Valentine’s Day card from that special man who never puts his own needs before yours.

Anyways, seeing as I’m a total pro at rehabilitating busted-ass public images (when I’m not being a total queen, at least), let’s all take another little trip over to Nobody Puts Baby in a Horner’s Amateur PR Corner and see what–if anything–can be done to help Mel Gibson save face in the public eye:

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Veronica Cartwright in Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
July 14, 2010

There are plenty of actresses out there who deliver perfectly serviceable freaking-the-f*ck-out FACE, but I will forever stand by the notion that Veronica Cartwright had a hot moment in the late ’70s where–between Ridley Scott’s Alien and Philip Kaufman’s superlative remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers–she made it her business to lose her shit on a completely different level.  I mean, have you seen her in Invasion of the Body Snatchers?  Frightened Veronica Cartwright and bugnuts hysteric Veronica Cartwright are basically the same thing, which simply goes to show how much she COMMITS.  Seriously, a long-standing appreciation of scream queens has taught me that there’s many a way to portray fear on film, but nobody else does it with quite the same panache as Veronica Cartwright.

And as usual, don’t hesitate to click to enlarge and appreciate the fabulousness of it all.

When AT&T Is Being the Worst, Christina Hendricks Once Again Reminds Us How She Is the Best
July 13, 2010

You know what’s only twelve days away?  The fourth season of Mad Men.  While that’s still twelve days too many in my book, I do manage to console myself with the reminder that at least I don’t get my cable from AT&T’s U-Verse.  According to Dealine.com, AT&T thinks AMC is “among the least-watched and most overpriced per viewer,” and as a result there’s talk that U-Verse customers might miss out on the fourth season premiere on account of AMC being dropped from U-Verse’s lineup.  This just goes to show that the only thing spottier than AT&T’s wireless service is the logic behind their cable service decisions, which is saying a lot, but I digress.  After all, when life gives you the bad-idea lemons, LA Times Magazine gives you gives you fabulous-Christina-Hendricks-profile-ade!

Seriously, it’s quite fabulous, and I could go over the highlights for you, but I wouldn’t want to ruin it for you if you haven’t already read it, even though I know you’ve already read it because you’re so good about being on top of things.  Besides, I really don’t need another sadness stroke thinking about how Christina Hendricks filmed Life as We Know It in Atlanta.  Honestly, if I had known this was happening, I would’ve flown down for an impromptu “family visit,” which would have in fact look suspiciously like that one time that kid tried to give Megan Fox a rose:

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Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: Karen Black in Day of the Locust
July 13, 2010

I’m not saying that we need a remake of What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?, and that’s because you really can’t improve upon Robert Aldrich’s masterpiece of high camp horror.  That said, I would like the above image be exhibit A in that–if there were to be a What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? remake–John Schlesinger should helm it, and he should cast Karen Black in the role of Baby Jane AND Blanche Hudson.  Sure, you might expect me to push for everyone’s favorite hard-boiled-egg enthusiast to reprise one of the roles (either would do, really), but is there a band devoted to the voluptuous horror of Faye Dunaway, or even just some slightly curvaceous creepiness?  No, I didn’t think so.

And as usual, don’t hesitate to click to enlarge and appreciate the (garish) fabulousness of it all.

[Update: In an embarrassing oversight brought to light in the comments, John Schlesinger sadly passed away in 2003.  Looks like a certain fantasy project just went from improbable to impossible.]

Today’s Fabulous Image in Cinema: The Dolphin Statue in Twilight
July 12, 2010

This past weekend, I may or may not have finally sat down and watched Twilight for the time (don’t judge me), and I may more or may not have really enjoyed myself (like I said, don’t judge me).  Regardless of what did or did not happen this past weekend, though, there is definitely a dolphin statue at the end of Twilight, which of course can only mean one thing: super-secret Showgirls reference!  While it remains unclear as to who would be responsible for this homage to the Greatest Movie Ever Made (a cheeky set designer’s assistant?  Catherine Hardwicke?  STEPHANIE MEYER?!?), that doesn’t mean we can’t discuss the Dolphin Statue as if it’s a thing that it’s most probably not.  Besides, my money’s on the Mormon (then again, when is it not?), so let’s talk this one through, shall we?

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