Category Archives: Pop Culture

My Movie Briefs – Take #2

My Movie Briefs – Take #2

Yes, I am so late to the table on this second round of Tiny Movie Reviews (check out the first round here) that I should be too ashamed to even post this. I should feel shame that I have been working at a “real job” instead of going to movies. Or, I’ve been raising “real children” instead of writing about fake ones.

Whatever! I’ve never been very good at shame so…..

The Wolf of Wall Street – I’m trying to come up with a word to fully describe the complete depravity I witnessed in this movie. And, I’m only trying to describe Jonah Hill’s teeth. Don’t get me started on the dwarf-throwing or “anal candling” (a term I have just now coined….I think).

August Osage County – Yeah, yeah, yeah, we get it. You are all Thespians who emote loudly. We are duly impressed.

Inside Llewyn Davis – I think this is just a super long commercial for Zoloft, right? Common side effects of Inside Llewyn Davis may include headache, nausea, diarrhea, dry mouth and increased sweating. Sexual side effects, such as problems with orgasm and ejaculatory delay often do not diminish.

What? Now you’re going to mess with my orgasm?

What? Now you’re going to mess with my orgasm?

Saving Mr. Banks – Sorry Mr. Disney, but even if he is a desperate drunk spitting up blood, I would still totally do Colin Farrell. And, actually, Emma Thompson too. She’s divine.

Her – It’s like when my grandpa goes all apoplectic because his computer box gadget won’t spit the thing out with the mouse do-hicky.  God damned technology!! It’ll be the death of us!!

Dag-blasted son-of-a-bitch! Why I oughtta…

Dag-blasted son-of-a-bitch! Why I oughta…

Weird computer on human sex action that is a sweeping commentary on the loneliness and isolation of the human condition. We get it. Oh, and Joaquin Phoenix – Creeps. Me. Out. Bad. And so do his high-waisted pants.

Rush – Thor can really be a douch sometimes.

American Hustle – I’ve been sitting here for the past three decades waiting for the resurgence of the Jerry Curl. David O. Russell, you complete me.

Philomena – Nuns are mean.

So there you are. A wrap up of the higher-profile movies of the awards season. Now it’s time to settle into the mindless drivel of entertainment that happens this time of year when there are no more awards to be won or careers to be made.

After slavery, AIDs and outer space, I could use a few car chases!

 

2013: An Awkward Death

2013: An Awkward Death

I am, admittedly, slow on the uptake for writing about 2013. After all, 2013 was so last month!

I’m going to blame it on my blinding anticipation of the new season of Downton Abbey. Damned Brits.

So, what can I say about 2013? It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was a year of weirdness, it was a year of boredom, it was a time of unsightly rashes and a time of emotional outbursts.

Does it seem to anyone other than me that 2013 has had the longest death scene ever? Haven’t we been trying to wrap this year up since about June?

The long, awkward death rattle of 2013

turkish2

So, here are a few of the oddities, in a vast sea of weirdness, from the year that made me tilt my head and say “Whaaaa???”

Zygote Infamy

Imagine having a lifetime supply of fame before you even develop limbs. Then imagine eventually being born to some of these parents.

  • We have yet more Kardashian blood on our hands now with the arrival of North West, who will most likely be bi-polar before hitting kindergarten.
  • His Royal Highness Prince George Alexander Louis of Cambridge selfishly took all the focus off of the final season of Breaking Bad by being born.
  • This created…something:

Wiz Khalifa, Amber Rose

  • But, to balance that, so did this:

Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard

  • Brad and Angelina did NOT have (or go get) any more children this year.

Dennis Rodman’s Love Affair

Celebrity couples are just like us!

Dennis Rodman, Kim Jung Il

They show their love in public.

They laugh together!

They laugh together!

They have serious discussions about stuff!

They have serious discussions about stuff!

They clap!!

They clap!!

Same Sex Marriage

A tip o’ the hat to California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, Washington and the District of Columbia.

These states legalized same-sex marriage, thereby ensuring they will all be better pressed, accessorized and smell of lavender.

And, a wag of the finger at the rest of you states. You can all continue to wallow in the stench of backward thinking and fear while living in your trailers that lack tasteful yet vibrant throw pillows. No pop of color for you!

Paula Deen

Paula Deen loses endorsements due to stupid racist remarks = $12.5 Million

The sustained consumption of salt, butter and bacon causes obesity and diabetes = $450 Billion

A Spike Lee/Jaime Oliver/Paula Deen Fight Club session = Priceless

Paula Deen

Spike Lee

Jamie Oliver

God’s Bouncer

Mario Jorge Bergoglio, (ex-bouncer, chemist and janitor) dares to be the bad boy James Dean of Vatican City with his crazy ideas of relieving poverty rather than focusing on old news like homosexuality, premarital sex and abortion. What are you, some kinda Christian?

This kid's the pope!

This kid’s the pope!

Don’t get me wrong – My membership card expired many years ago. I mean, I am a thinking human with ovaries who birthed two males of alter boy age, all of which are cause for concern in the Catholic Club.

This Guy

Shut your pie hole. Really.

Duck Dynasty, Phil Robertson

So, in closing, I bid 2013 a tardy adieu and good riddance. Don’t let the door hit you in that freaky ass on the way out.

 

My Movie Briefs – Take #1

My Movie Briefs – Take #1

That’s right, I hand wash my unmentionables.

It’s the holiday season again! Time to get out the big box of decorations, bake treats, dig out my clapboard and director’s chair and listen with a child-like sense of magic as the nominations start to roll in.

That’s right, it’s the start of award season and I, for one, need to change my pants because I AM SO DAMNED EXCITED.

Knowing how busy we all are preparing for that “other” holiday, I figured I’d do a mini-review of the movies that look to be award contenders during this, the holiest time of the year.

Sort of a Reader’s Digest version without the old people cartoons about prostate cancer and hearing loss.

So I present a niblet, a trace, a whisper, and a whiff of my opinion on some of the movies I’ve seen thus far, thereby reducing the essence of the gigantic human effort of creating an enduring piece of cinematic art to one or two snarky lines.

Here are my Movie Briefs. (Not to be confused with my actual lucky movie underwear I’m wearing right now.)

Nebraska – This is nothing short of a renaissance for pissy, stoic geriatric Midwesterners. It’s finally your time in the spotlight! And Will Forte, you adorable bastard, call me.

I’m freezing and it’s too damned loud in here.

Blue Is The Warmest Color – Finally, I can now go out in public to watch my foreign lesbian pornography under the guise of French art house noir! If real porn were one-tenth this good, well, I’d probably have to quit my job.

Dallas Buyers Club – Heroine-chic is so 90’s and so OVER. If you are not sporting retro HIV-chic then I simply cannot be seen with you.

12 Years A Slave – Terrific, fantastic, impactful movie that states what we all grudgingly know deep down inside – white people are just very bad.

Captain Phillips – Tom Hanks acts out exactly how I responded to the news I was having twins with his amazing portrayal of PTSD. Nailed it.

I don't accept this! Re-do the ultrasound now!

I don’t accept this! Re-do the ultrasound now!

Blue Jasmine – Mental illness has never been so exceptionally well dressed. I wanna get me some of that!

Gravity – Sandra Bullock is one badass chick, floating through space all perfectly toned yet “sciencey” at the same time. Only thing that would have made it better is if they threw Melissa McCarthy out there with her. Now that is a buddy movie I can get my arms around.

Enough Said – So adorable, heart-warming and moving that I am suddenly drawn to overweight, balding yet soulful middle-aged men. That’s right, I’m looking at you, Dennis Franz. Call me.

That’s it for now. Stay tuned for round #2 when I’ll give you the 411 on depressed folk singers, dysfunctional families, techno-erotica, corporate greed and Walt Disney. Deck those halls!

My Summer In a Women’s Prison

My Summer In a Women’s Prison

I think it’s time I came clean. I have been harboring this terrible secret for too long and the guilt and stress is eating at my very soul.

You see, while the rest of you have been out frolicking in the summer sunshine, I have hidden in dark corners, waiting until no one could see me and I was at last alone, to give into my dark, terrible addiction of…….online TV series.

Oh, it started innocently enough. I quite purposefully tried to spread out my True Blood binge this year, limiting myself to two episodes a week of vampires, werewolves, shape shifters, faeries and, of course, very tight Swedish buttocks.

I suppose I do more than my fair share of squats. Does that make me a naughty Swede?

I suppose I do more than my fair share of squats. Does that make me a naughty Swede?

But once my supply of True Blood ran out, I had to hit the seedy cyber streets to find more.

I kept it innocent enough at first, moving on to Hemlock Grove, which is like True Blood Lite. It even stars the younger brother of our naughty Swede, Bill Skarsgard.

Will I ever be as hot as big brother? Only time will tell, my little Nordic friend.

Will I ever be as hot as big brother? Only time will tell, my little Nordic friend.

This one came equipped with gypsy werewolves in high school, Famke Janssen as a Joan-Crawford-meets-Morticia matriarch, and something called a Upir, which is a Russian werewolf who can walk around during the day.

But when did walking around during the day become an issue for werewolves? Alcides does it all the time on True Blood…and, he rarely wears a shirt….and does household chores.

I’ll get right on that gutter once I’ve done something unimaginably sexy with this ax.

I’ll get right on that gutter once I’ve done something unimaginably sexy with this ax.

See, I was too early into my addiction to suspend disbelief. I still needed to wrap all that weird shit in logic.

Instead, I just ended up with feelings of confusion, emptiness and shame.

So, I decided to go for something of higher quality that wasn’t cut with junk.

I started to troll the Sundance Channel and found Top Of The Lake.

This one had no mythical creatures. But, it did have inbreeding, self-flagellation, teen pregnancy, meth labs and crazy face tattoos.

I had no self-control after the first episode and was back to my old ways, binging out and watching the whole thing within a week.

And I won’t lie.

It.

Felt.

Good.

From there it was a free fall into dark subject matter. I remember waking up on the couch after a jag of all 13 episodes of Orange Is The New Black. I think I had blacked out somewhere around the point where Piper is cornered in the shower by a bunch of hillbilly, born-again meth addicts with a homemade shiv.

That’s right, I was freebasing a women’s prison dramedy. But, I had blown my wad and had nothing to fall back on. I had no stash. No new season of anything for easily 6 months at best! How was this sudden detox going to play out?

But, there is always someone out there who will keep you hooked.

And along came Broadchurch. A tasty, dark, disturbing drug from those damned BBC Thugs-on-Thames. But, since it’s a current show, iTunes has become my very own mini-series methadone clinic, only allowing me to watch one episode per week.

I have five more episodes before I am once again left starved, shaking and on the street looking for my next fix.

If I can just hang on until the new season of New Girl, I may get through this yet. Yes, what I need is some lighthearted, innocent entertainment to soothe my darkened soul.

…..unless Jess becomes a Zombie coke whore.

....it could happen.

….it could happen.

The Future – Where You Still Have To Plug In Your Laptop

The Future – Where You Still Have To Plug In Your Laptop

SPOILER BLOG!!! Turn away now if you are one of those people who have to experience shit for yourself instead of heeding the warnings of others. Close this down and jump off that bridge, fool. 

I have emerged from the deep, finally, after not posting for several weeks. Life gets in the way often, but NOTHING gets in the way of my annoyance with bad movies so here ya go.

It’s been a while, thankfully I suppose, since I’ve seen a really terrible movie. Not that many of the flicks I’ve sat through will win any awards, but every now and then there is such a stinker that I just have to get my rant on.

I had high hopes for Elysium.

First of all, it had Matt Damon who, up until now, seems to make good choices in his career. He also is just doggone cute and, frankly, hilarious.

God, you are so right. Just look at me…I’m goddamned adorable!

God, you are so right. Just look at me…I’m goddamned adorable!

Secondly, the director is that South African dude who did District 9 which is, in my humble opinion, a freaking awesome sci-fi movie.

So, I will admit that I may have had unrealistic expectations from the start. However, even if I were DOING Matt Damon, I’d slap him upside that adorable noggin.

In a nutshell I’ll give you the rundown to save you the trouble.

  • Poor people are noble, rich people are assholes. WE GET IT!
  • Evidently, even though everyone has a tanning bed-like machines in their homes that can cure everything from Leukemia to a blown off face in a matter of seconds, in the future we will still have to plug our laptops into walls for a network connection. Evidently, wireless didn’t end up working so well. Who knew?
  • You can literally change the political and social direction of an entire planet by typing the word “Legal” in some code. Duly noted.
  • Jodi Foster is not only “not” saying she’s gay, she’s also “not” saying she has completely given up on acting. And, given up on her dialect coach, evidently, because she had the weirdest futuristic French accent ever. If that’s how people talk in 2154, thank god I’ll be long dead because I’d stab them all in the eye.

    Do you see my intense stare and severe haircut. I’m ACTING, people!!

    Do you see my intense stare and severe haircut? I’m ACTING, people!!

  • Diego Luna, a BRILLIANT Mexican actor was totally wasted, being relegated to a street urchin looking like a cross between Tonto and Pippi Longstocking.
image

It makes no sense to us either, Diego.

  • Sharlto Copley, who was awesome in District 9, has also gone to waste. His character is so one-dimensionally evil that by comparison you’d think Hannibal Lector ran a soup kitchen.
Would you like your chowder in a bread bowl?

Would you like your chowder in a bread bowl?

So, to summarize. The future looks stupid and even Matt Damon’s awesome abs can’t save us.

The End.

Mosh Pits And Incontinence – Recapturing Youth

Mosh Pits And Incontinence – Recapturing Youth
Step off, bitches!

Step off, bitches!

I’ve been fortunate to have accidentally lived in certain cities during their heydays. In the 1980’s I was in Silicon Valley and San Francisco for the high tech and new wave music boom. 1990’s it was Seattle for Microsoft and the grunge movement.

I’m not sure exactly which city best represents the 2000’s but for me it was split between Portland (before Portlandia existed) and Santa Barbara.

Not sure there is much to say about Santa Barbara…..Michael Jackson’s pedophile case was tried here. Does that count for anything?

As I’ve gotten older and my kids are no longer the parasites they once were, I’ve been trying to recapture a little of the person I was before I turned into the life-giving drone I became.

So, when one of my dearest and oldest friends mentioned that The Specials were on their reunion tour and playing in San Francisco, I immediately committed to getting my saggy ass back up to The City by The Bay to do some serious recapturing.

Let me start by telling you that I have always FREAKING LOVED THE SPECIALS! I believe they are one of the best but shortest-lived bands ever. I am a closet ska girl. I made the DJ at my wedding reception play all their songs, even though there were only a few of us who would get out there and skank (ska dancing for the unenlightened).

One of the steps in recapturing my inner rude girl is going to a concert that is general admittance where one must stand pressed inappropriately against strangers.  In recent years I’ve gone more the barc-o-lounger route, because I say shit like “Oy, my aching back!” or “Is it loud or is it me?” and “What the hell is that smell?”

But see, with a Ska band, you CAN NOT sit down. It is physically impossible not to dance.

This is a scientific fact. Go look it up.

The next step is remembering all the important concert rules. First and foremost of said rules is that one must never “break the seal.” Meaning, hold your pee because once you go the first time, you will have to go constantly through the concert and no one wants to have to go to a bathroom in a venue that would have any band you’d want to see. So, if you hold it until that initial need passes, you can hold it for the duration.

This is yet another scientific fact. See, I entertain AND educate.

Or, at least that’s what used to work when I was in my 20’s and had not yet had children. Suffice it to say that there is really no “seal” to speak of after that.

But, pissing oneself aside, this was one of the most fun nights I’d had in years. It was easy to get right back to that place of feeling so much joy in music that you love while being surrounded by friends that you love.

Plus, I have come up with a new product idea. Concert diapers for the post-30’s crowd. You can buy them next to the t-shirts in the lobby with the band logo on them. Let’s face it, most of the bands could use these too.

Introducing
Piss Off! Concert Nappies ™

 “Not Your Grandma’s Diapers.” ™

Rude Girl is back.

Personal Space Invaders

Personal Space Invaders

At one time or another we have all come across one. Some of you may even be one. What I speak of is the Close Talker, the all-too-frequent person who just loves to get all up in your space.

It seems like, and this may just be me and my pile of neurosis, but the universally agreed-upon personal space boundary of 18 inches to 4 feet seems to be in jeopardy. I’d love to think it’s simply my exceptional magnetism that is causing people to stick to me like flies on shit, but I believe it may be a wider spread problem.

It seems to crop up all over the place. At work, social events, standing in lines. Who hasn’t had that  person behind you in line seeming to climb up on your back while waiting to buy their Hot Pockets and Tab?

No one will take your crappy food products, honey. Back off and relax. Do NOT make me mark my territory….because I will. In fact, it’s one of the few times when I sort of wish I had a penis, as marking off that distance would be much more effective with that tool at my disposal.

We are not in China, people! We have wide open prairies here.

We are not in China, people! We have wide open prairies here.

Then, there are those who get up in your junk because they are simply liquored up. These people live in the “negative-space” world where they actually seem to try to crawl inside of you.

Now, I understand situational space limitations when one needs a drink at a crowded bar. I’m not an animal, people. I have feelings.

Barkeep! Another Gin Fizz for the little lady!!

But, if you are pushing your way in for, let’s say, your 10th drink, I no longer have the empathy I would have had for your 1st or 2nd.

I had an experience just recently with this exact situation. While standing at the bar of a groovy new hotspot I started to feel a strange pressure against my back that slowly turned into a full-body press. When I turned around to see who my assailant was, I realized it was a famous person who I will refer to as “Sam” because that is his name.

This fine establishment was obviously not his first stop of the night as he was doing that squinty-eyed swaying sort of thing that indicates either an astigmatism and vertigo or being tanked. Me thinks it was the latter.

So, instead of swaying and toppling over, why not just lean up against someone and hope they don’t make any sudden moves. Find a human lamp post, as it were. And if said lamp post is a woman, and I am a drunk dude, all the better.

I was a human lamp post to the stars. A very proud moment for me. Though not so much for him as he was soon escorted out of the place.

So, the moral of  the story is simply this:

Back the hell off!!!!

I will leave you all with this educational film. Watch it and learn. And, by God, stand your ground!

 

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly of Fashion

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly of Fashion

“If you wore a trend the first time around, you don’t get to wear it the second time around.”
― Stacey London

Oh, Stacey London, you are the Socrates of Style. If only people listened.

Like death and taxes, one can always take comfort in the consistency of bad fashion making a return appearance in our culture. It is a testament to the creative limitations of the fashion industry.

And proof that we are a planet of lemmings.

I’ve often wondered where fashion trends are born. I know where they all die – in the back of my closet. But what sort of demented mastermind came up with the idea to resurrect culottes (which first came into fashion as knee-breeches commonly worn by gentlemen of the European upper-classes from the late Middle Ages or Renaissance).

Yeah, I read shit.

I picture a room full of these guys huffing hairspray and coming up with the Summer line.

I have been unfortunate enough to have been the willing victim of several hideous fashion trends. Just like the rest of you, I have happily worn shoulder pads so big I had to step sideways through doorways. I’ve worn neon mini skirts with suspenders and sang “Oh Mickey You’re So Fine” whilst kicking up my sparkly tennis shoes.

Let’s take a moment to walk down memory lane. Well, not so much memory lane, since most of this crap is back or on it’s way back into the fashion focus. Maybe more of a walk of shame.

Hammer Pants (or the “I’ve taken a dump and you can’t tell” pant)

Then:

A bit of street pimp with a dash of Ali Baba.

Now:

Jesus, Chris Brown, did you beat Rihanna with that thing?

The One-piece Jumper

Then:

Just because you could make it in you hobby room, does not mean you should.

Now:

I want to wrap him in a blanket and put him down for a nap.

I want to wrap him in a blanket and put him down for a nap.

 Overalls

Then:

The item of clothing that knew no racial, gender or economic boundaries.

The item of clothing that knew no racial, gender or economic boundaries.

Now:

Here, let me just put on my jaunty chapeau before I hit the fields, Pa Joad.

 Bonus Now:

I…wha?....huh??? I am a business man. No, I am a blue collar man. No, I am a bookish hipster. How about just NO!

I…wha?….huh??? I am a business man. No, I am a blue collar man. No, I am a bookish hipster. How about just NO!

Double Bonus Now:

What do we love more than a hillbilly? A BRILLIANT hillbilly!

What do we love more than a hillbilly? A BRILLIANT hillbilly!

I could go on for many pages about neon, ripped up t-shirts, Varnais sunglasses, mock turtlenecks and platform tennis shoes. But, I think we all get the rather sordid picture here. So, I will leave you with a quote from my favorite famous gay, who is NEVER wrong.

“Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months.”
― Oscar Wilde

Ode To A Naked Gold Man

Ode To A Naked Gold Man

 

The big event arrives on Sunday

our hearts are all aflame

Daniel, Sally, Helen, Ben

MacFarlane, don’t be lame

 

The glitz and glamour of red carpet style

The men all handsome and lean

With yards and yards of wardrobe tape

Nary a nip will be seen

 

Who will be the big winner this night?

Could it be Zero Dark Thirty?

Or maybe Silver Linings will win

Bradley Cooper makes me feel dirty

 

Lincoln, Django, Life of Pi

All wonderful movies, surely

But with runtimes over 2 hours long

Our bladders were starting to get surly

 

Bradley, Daniel and Joaquin

Denzel and Jackman, Hugh

Thespians every one of them

But which one would you screw? (you know you’ve thought about it….)

 

Who will be the lucky presenter

For Beasts of the Southern Wild

To say the name Quvenzhane Wallis

Big name for such a small child

 

Chastain, Lawrence, Riva, Watts

Each one is the one to beat

Their acting chops are unsurpassed

Honey, please get something to eat

 

Adele will sweep the Best Song prize

And I for one could hug her

I only hope she drinks lot’s o’ plonk

So I can ‘ear ‘er say bollocks and bugger

 

So prepare your snarky comments, all

Let’s judge and rip and tear

Which awkward speech will get played off

Who will trip on a stair

 

You may all wonder why it is

Oscar makes me weak in the knees

The simple, honest, truth is this

I  f**king love movies!

Valentine’s Day – SPOILER ALERT From A Grumpy Non-Romantic

Valentine’s Day – SPOILER ALERT From A Grumpy Non-Romantic

I am not a Valentine’s Day type of gal. It’s never mattered what my relationship status has been. I just have never gotten into it.

I see it like I see New Year’s Eve – it’s amateur night.

But, in honor of St. Valentine (who most people think was made up by Geoffrey Chaucer who I love so maybe it all makes sense after all) I will throw a giant bucket of cold water on the event everyone is hoping will happen tonight.

Yep, I’m all sour grapes. Turn back now.

With the constant deluge of “leaked” celebrity sex tapes, I think we may all be under the misguided idea that we are looking pretty hot and sexy ourselves during “the sex.”

I hate to burst any bubbles, but most of the time these celebrities are fully aware they are being taped so they are adjusting their responses accordingly, able to look seductive and well-coiffed even at the peak of the experience.

They are THESPIANS after all, with many having completed the all-important Porn Method Acting 101 class.

The rest of us, however, look like we either stubbed our toe or ate a lemon when we reach the top of the mountain. But we don’t know it and we don’t particularly care because NO ONE IS LOOKING.

It’s in our DNA to close our eyes because otherwise the human race would cease to exist. It’s hard to get that picture out of one’s head once it’s there.

Let’s face it, real people sex, while lot’s of fun, can be kind of ugly to look at since, despite what may be happening in your head at the time, we are not professionals.

Exhibit A:

What we think we look like.

What we think we look like.

 

The terrible reality.

The terrible reality.

So, Godspeed, my romantic darlings. Buy those giant hearts full of chocolate and the red roses, wear that super tight dress to dinner and, for the sake of humankind, keep those eyes closed!

[Creative disclaimer: In reality, I am a hopeless romantic. Hell, Love Actually is my favorite movie! But hopeful and happy is just not as funny as bitter and grumpy.]