Saturday, December 22, 2007
I'm sorry, but are these diaries not just freaky cool?
The Australian business (they've got a cool sound loop on their site) is partnered with an organization for young women called Mercy Ministries.
Inasmuch as you can tell from Yahoo! and Google, they seem to be on the good side of the church racket-thinking of others, compassion, that sort of thing.
Tom Hanks couldn't keep doing sitcoms the rest of his life...but sometimes I really miss that guy, you know?
The script is a crowd pleaser with many laugh-lines. I was reminded that writer Aaron Sorkin's comedy often plays best against darker tones, which is one of the reasons Studio 60 had so many tomatoes thrown at it.
There are also some in-jokes for Sorkin fans. Someone keeps trying to sell Hanks on the idea of a TV drama set in Washington. There's a Gilbert & Sullivan reference. The Indians in the Lobby. And somebody breaks a window.
All this may not mean much of anything to most of you, but I scarfed 'em down like they were doughnuts.
Two of the three name stars are problematical, but I don't think it's really their fault. In a way I almost found myself wishing for Robin Williams to have taken the title role, I think because with Hanks, you always get a nice, safe, comfortable performance.
With Williams, you never know. Give him a good director and script (which this had) and he's worthy of Oscar nominations. But...
As for Julia Roberts...I'm going to assume it was Mike Nichols who directed that her hair and make-up should be done in such a way as to make her resemble a drag-queen version of herself. I'm not even sure it was the wrong decision, the part she's playing-a wealthy Texas woman-is the sort of lady who often looks like a drag queen version.
But Hanks and Roberts use their not-inconsiderable star power, and Hanks especially proves himself, as ever, a talented actor.
Meanwhile, Philip Seymour Hoffman steals the movie so brazenly he might as well be carrying a gun and a mask. You get the feeling he must have had the most fun anyone's ever had in a black comedy version of
the true story of how a playboy congressman, a renegade CIA agent and a beautiful Houston socialite joined forces to lead the largest and most successful covert operation in history
Ned Beatty shows up to remind us that pretty much any time he shows up, you know you're in good hands.
Hot movie star of the year Amy Adams plays Hanks' administrative assistant; she's sexy and funny...as all seem to know by now.
I won't be surprised, however, if there's some blowback from feminists about the place of Adams and other women in this film.
Emily Blunt (above), for example, who shows up, drops her pants, opens her blouse, and disappears.
The natural defense to such accusations might be that the story is, after all, set in the time of Swatch. And is about a congressman who habitually hires pretty young women, bright-eyed and twitchy-tailed as cheerleader coeds, as his office staff, on the grounds that:
"You can teach 'em to type, you can't teach 'em to grow tits."
But that's one thing. You're telling a man's story, you've got to tell the truth. The way the camera lingers longingly on their asses is another, the fact they're identified in the cast list only as "Charlie's Angels" one through four quite another.
They are--as you scroll down, in order: Shiri Appleby
Rachel Nichols (no relation AFAIK)
Wynn Everett, on the left; Mary Bonner Baker...who is the daughter of former Secretary of State James Baker III...on the right, oh yeah, on the right.
'Boy Meets World' actress faces drunken driving charge
NEWPORT BEACH, California (AP) -- Former child star Danielle Fishel, a teen heartthrob on ABC's "Boy Meets World," was arrested this week on a drunken driving warrant from Los Angeles County, police said.
Fishel grew up in Yorba Linda and spent more than seven years playing Topanga, the love interest of "Boy Meets World" star Ben Savage.
In February, Fishel became a special correspondent for "The Tyra Banks Show."
I don't know how to describe the Modern Rose, When I can't refer to her shape against her clothes With the fever of purple prose.
Over at No Smoking in the Skull Cave, Becca posted a handful of pictures of nude model/"actress" Aria Giovanni. I opined:
Remember that line I love from The Science of Sleep? "I like your boobs. I think they’re very friendly and unpretentious.”
Aria Giovanni's boobs are contentious and overbearing. Especially in that first picture.
That's just one fella's opinion, of course.
This hath led S. Frog, who as I have observed on more than one occasion makes me look like Dan Quayle when it comes to "an appreciation of beautiful women," to comment:
Anyone who intellectualizes their opinion of a woman's breasts in those terms is the definition of pretentious and overbearing. I don't need to justify my behavior in a way that makes me look precious and clever. I just like her tits.
I suppose I could express my opinion that, when we die, if we've been good, we get to take an eternal hot shower with Virginia Madsen. Or I could say ooh baby, gimmie soma that.
Equally, I could say Mia Sara is a very beautiful woman. Or I could say me wanna love her long time.
I might say that Shannon Elizabeth makes me feverish with passion; that she is in some ways the very model of what there is in a woman to arouse a male. Or I could say she's got a great rack and I'd like to stick my dick into her.
Angelina Jolie symbolizes, for me, the ludicrous standards we set for female sexuality in this culture because she had to wear a padded bra to play Lara Croft.
Oh, I'm sorry, I meant, I want to rub my prick between her titties.
A wise man once said Linda Shayne's sensitive performance in one of her more challenging parts was awesome, that it made movie history, the highlight of the entire movie, amazing and moving. But who cares...she put 'em on the glass!
Of Penelope Cruz, I might just muse, that Richard Kiley could well have been singing about her when he sang, "I Never Met a Rose."
Or, I could ruminate on how fun it would be to tune her breasts like a radio.
Lindsey Shaw could be seen as testament to the celestial joy of a young woman in bloom. Or a slo-mo shot could be taken of her tits bouncing in time to middle eastern music (oh wait-her series already did that).
Even poor dead, dumb drunken floozy Anna Nicole, without a thought above her neck, had in her the woman's gift of life that we all celebrate.
Or um, ah, hotcha!
Lord knows, the last thing I want to be thought of as is pretentious. Well, maybe the second to last.
What I can't stomach are people who're out to convince people that the educated are soft and privileged and out to make them feel like they're less than. You know, 'he may be educated, but I'm plain-spoken...'
-The West Wing
Friday, December 21, 2007
Chaotic Good A chaotic good character acts as his conscience directs him with little regard for what others expect of him. He makes his own way, but he's kind and benevolent. He believes in goodness and right but has little use for laws and regulations. He hates it when people try to intimidate others and tell them what to do. He follows his own moral compass, which, although good, may not agree with that of society. Chaotic good is the best alignment you can be because it combines a good heart with a free spirit. However, chaotic good can be a dangerous alignment because it disrupts the order of society and punishes those who do well for themselves.
Humans are the most adaptable of the common races. Short generations and a penchant for migration and conquest have made them physically diverse as well. Humans are often unorthodox in their dress, sporting unusual hairstyles, fanciful clothes, tattoos, and the like.
Bards often serve as negotiators, messengers, scouts, and spies. They love to accompany heroes (and villains) to witness heroic (or villainous) deeds firsthand, since a bard who can tell a story from personal experience earns renown among his fellows. A bard casts arcane spells without any advance preparation, much like a sorcerer. Bards also share some specialized skills with rogues, and their knowledge of item lore is nearly unmatched. A high Charisma score allows a bard to cast high-level spells.
Find out What Kind of Dungeons and Dragons Character Would You Be?, courtesy of Easydamus (e-mail)
someone on the Okayplayer.com boards posted my interview with Joel Dorn as a way of remembering him.
Also, NPR is featuring a 10-minute interview with Dorn, including excerpts from his reissues.
Thanks to my friend Corey "Kid" Klemow-the future first great Jewish boxer-for the link.
Thursday, December 20, 2007
This is another one of those posts where I make a smart-ass comment I know I'll hate myself for in the morning
Beauty fills us with passion
It graces us with joy & lights up our existence.
A landscape, a piece of music, a film, a dance –
Suddenly all dreariness is gone, we are left bewitched, we are dazzled.
If we get lost
in dark despair
beauty takes us back to Center.
- Piero Ferrucci
More fun with naked ladies, or I have no sense of whether Sophie is Sapphic, but it seems a sensible 'ssumption.
These are sportswomen of a handball club in Spain. Near as I can tell from the awkwardly translated Spanish, they posed for this naked poster in order to raise funds to keep the club active. If it were up to me, it would work.
This is golfer and calendar model Sophie Sandolo.
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Zombie comes off as a smart guy in interviews (and on the DVD commentaries), and it's apparent he tried his best to find a new take on the material, for which he should be commended. I just don't think he totally succeeded.
The best part of the movie comes in the first two "acts," which are almost totally new. Here we see Michael Myers as a child, played by Daeg Faerch, who is worryingly good. Zombie gives us more than one new truly disturbing image here and in this context, I mean that in a good way.
Hanna Hall (below) as Michael's sister and especially Sheri Moon (Zombie) as his mother are well-cast in their likable, doomed roles.
Moon is seen below (at far right) with some of the other women in the cast, along with a guy I don't know but whom I deeply envy.
In fact, almost all the performances in the remake are of a higher caliber than most horror films, and spiced with actors who bring their own "legends" of a sort to the proceedings.
Malcolm "A Clockwork Orange" McDowell plays Dr. Loomis, and wisely doesn't even try to compete with Donald Pleasance's indelible portrait. Brad Dourif is the town sheriff. Dourif has been in over 100 movies or television shows including One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest and the Lord of The Rings films. He's also the voice of Chucky in the Child's Play movies. A great character actor, Dourif isn't given as much to do here as in some of his other roles, but he's an oddly reassuring presence nevertheless.
But when it comes time for the third act, Michael's bloody return home as an adult, things have to move so fast that (although I do think Zombie wanted me to) it was almost impossible to care about any of the victims. Almost but not impossible. To an extent, good casting comes to Zombie's rescue here.
At age 10 (give or take), Danielle Harris played the daughter of Laurie Strode, the Jamie Lee Curtis character from the original Halloween, in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers. This is still the only sequel worth a damn.
Here, actually 30 but impressively realistic as 17, she plays one of the best friends of...Laurie Strode.
Her nude scene in the film has gathered some...let's call it "acclaim." But beyond the novelty of-"Whoa! That's Jamie Lloyd all grown up-and topless," her casting has an effective echo of the earlier sequel.
When the grown-up Michael, played by Tyler Mane, who is 6'9 (!) is standing over her bloodied, screaming; 5-foot form, she looks for the world like she's 10 years old again. And although I had almost no feeling for her new character, I still had enough left over for Jamie Lloyd to care when she was in peril.
On the other hand, I had no residual feelings for Kristina Klebe, as Laurie's other best friend, Lynda. But she plays her part well, which is more than it asks for.
She also looks good naked, which is precisely what it asks for.Plus, I gotta love her fashion sense (and based on her MySpace page, much of her musical taste).
Laurie is played by Scout Taylor-Compton, seen in the middle below between Harris and Klebe. Taylor-Compton is appealing, but given too many grim things to do.
An alternate ending available on the second DVD of the set may not be scarier than the (Chainsaw Massacre-inspired) one Zombie eventually went with, but it is more interesting. I wish he'd stayed with it for that reason.
Final word: The new movie is bloodier, though probably not unrealistically so, than the original. But nowhere near as full-blooded.
Reuters: Britney Spears' sister is pregnant at sixteen
People.com: Lynne Spears's Parenting Book 'Delayed Indefinitely'
I'm not even going near saying anything about the state from which the father of the younger Ms. Spears baby reportedly hails...
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
I had the pleasure of interviewing Dorn by telephone about five years ago and I remember him as being a funny, friendly storyteller, which sense you got from his thoughtful and always-worth-reading liner notes, too.
His reissues of artists the likes of Les McCann and Eddie Harris were often among the best, if not the best, music I heard in any given year.
I thought his Paul Desmond compilation was so beautiful that I included a reference to it in the play/screenplay/novel I've been schlepping around.
And I mustn’t forget Aaron Neville's irresistible Orchid in the Storm.
Back when I used to do more music reviewing than I am these days, I could almost always rely upon releases from Dorn's various labels.
Looking it up to include a link here, I was reminded that my review of Dorn's experimental Head Jazz collection was the first I wrote after 9/11; I embraced it like a lover.
His releases introduced me to artists, material and styles that would become musical "friends" of mine. Including Bobby Darin; the Heavy Flute and Have You Had Your Vitamin B-3 Today? collections.
So, thanks a lot, Joel.
Your Score: Woodstock
Wishy-Washy: 34%, Mental: 59%, Physical: 40%
Perhaps the world's most uncoordinated bird, Woodstock is Snoopy's best friend, activity partner and occasional secretary. With his erratic flight patterns, he has trouble avoiding anything roughly between him and his destination and usually spends the winter holed up in Snoopy's kennel. Be extra careful playing baseball or football, as sports become a lot more challenging when the ball is six times bigger than you are.
|Link: The Peanuts Character Test written by timberlineridge on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the The Dating Persona Test|
Came across this while I was looking for something completely different and wanted to share it. It comes from a Flickr member screennamed Zero G, who also put together a list of other things that happened in '77.
He's from the UK, but there's enough crossover that if you're like me you'll recognize more than a few things. Also a personal essay and annotations of the above collage.
Monday, December 17, 2007
Sunday, December 16, 2007
|You Are Surrealism|
Dreamy and idealistic, you've created a world that is all your own.
It's very likely that you've either dabbled in drugs or are naturally trippy.
You are always trying to push beyond the boundaries of your culture and society.
You believe that art, love, and freedom can change the world.