Posted in Movies, Pop Culture

I would rather have seen ‘City of Angles’ instead

Why is Nicholas Cage attracted to Meg Ryan’s neck?

That’s not a misspelling. I would have rather seen a movie about 45, 90 and 180 degree angles than this movie.

First of all– questions:

*I get why an angel would fall in love with a person but how can person fall in love with an entity with no personality?

*Whose idea was it to use that goo goo dolls song? I used to like it and now I hate it because of this movie.

*Why are angels wearing black? Is that supposed to be a comment on the literature of angels where they are all dressed in white?

*Did Meg and Nicholas Cage consummate?

*What is up with movies/books where the couple consummates one time and then somebody dies? Is that a white people thing?

*Why are all the angels dude? No women angels?

*Why is falling from angeldom a mystery? Andre B said the guy from NYPD Blue fell and had a family and everything. How is that not news?

*Are there angels in other cities? What about towns and countries? What if you’re in a land-locked state?

Now, comments:

*Songs are way better than the movie.

*Cage is not swoon worthy in this. He gave a creepy vibe. Meg Ryan can have chemistry with a chair, but even she couldn’t fix this mess.

*I like that Meg Ryan was a smart doctor

*Why is the family at the beginning of the movie not aware about the risks of surgery? That’s a terrible hospital if they didn’t warn them or make them sign mountains of paperwork.

I don’t understand how I could be simultaneously bored and be asking all these questions simultaneously—but here we are.

Rating: John Lennon in that wife-beater song. Woof.

**Any movie where Andre Braugher is boring (not his fault, it was the essence of being an angel, I guess) is a bad movie.

Posted in Movies, Pop Culture

Happytime Murders — Movie so bad, you wish you were the one being murdered.

That was my face too when I was watching the movie

This movie is trying too hard to be ‘Who Framed Roger Rabbit’ with it’s mixed human + fictional puppet people (I can’t tell if these are muppets or not? I think that’s the point) and being in mystery mode. Except WFRR is a great movie and this one is a hot mess.

Let’s do a compare and contrast:

Roger Rabbit vs Blue guy

Roger is a nervous rabbit with a hot wife and is a known star in cartoons. He begs for help from Bob Hoskins.

The blue guy is a grumpy guy and has a lot of stringy white stuff spraying around in a scene that tries to play for laughs but just feels cringey and desperate. The problem — this character is two (too?) dimensional. You know nothing other than basic stats. Roger, you knew him by his clothes, his voice, his energy, what his house looks like..etc. Two dimensional characters are so general and bland (lack of details that could be communicated through verbal or non verbal cues). Not enough details, so why the fuck should care?

Bob Hoskins vs. Melissa McCarthy

Is there any contest? Although it’s not MM’s fault. This movie was badly written. Unless, she actually wrote the film (I didn’t check). Her character was two dimensional too. See: Bridesmaids and Spy. So MM can act and she’s funny. Maybe she was burnt out by the time she was doing this movie? Who knows.

Not Enough World Building — You’re telling me MM couldn’t just punch the woman puppet in the face?

Doesn’t know what it wants to be, the tone is lacking — Playing it safe…wants to be a comedy, wants to be a mystery noir, wants to be not taken seriously but taken seriously. Either go all the way in one direction (Airplane) or the other (Who Framed Roger Rabbit). WFRR had mood lighting, it had mood music, it had mood locations. Happytime….did they just run out of money? It feels like an glorified SNL sketch that fell flat.

Man, I had a lot to say about this movie!

Posted in Movies, Pop Culture

21 Bridges didn’t have enough bridges

I REALLY wanted to like this movie. I really did but it kinda sucked. Mostly because everything was super predictable and there were like 3 bridges in this movie….and they were all overhead transition shots (i.e. to cut from one scene to another scene to express the passage of time). Chadwick was great, but he’s pretty much great in everything….but I was like, DUDE, I’ve already figured this all out 20 minutes in.

I was watching this with a friend and the first thing I said was, “This is kind of like that movie, The Negotiator.” He says, “Who was the bad guy in the Negotiator?” and I said, “The old white guy who’s supposed to be like the manager type (then J.K. Simmons shows up), —yeah, that guy is the bad guy.”

Spoiler alert? It really isn’t. The partner stuff wasn’t a surprise either. Nothing was a surprise. At least surprise me with all the bridges somehow. I was expecting there were bombs at all the bridges and how were the cops going to get to all those bridges in time before they detonate? Die Hard 3 a la bridges. Alas, there was like 1 or 2 lines on bridges and that was it. Or maybe, have at least, Todd Bridges in the movie and his nickname is 21 or something. Argh.

Rating: Paul McCartney singing with the Wings.

Posted in Movies, Pop Culture

Top Gun (1986)

Incidentally, I saw no guns on the pilots — biceps or otherwise

My friend and I are slowly watching through all of Tony Scott’s movies and I was surprised to learn that he directed Top Gun! I watched Top Gun when I was a kid, but didn’t understand what the heck was going on, other than, they were really oily during that volleyball scene. How they didn’t attract all the sand and become sand men is beyond me.

So, I tried to pay attention to this movie, the plot and such and I just became obsessed with Tom Cruise’s height in all the scenes. I don’t know what brought my attention to it, I just noticed in one scene he was at Anthony Edwards eyeline and in another scene, he was around his chin. Then, I started watching all the scenes where Tom Cruise is screaming. He and some other guy are screaming…while the boss guy is still sitting on the desk. Why wouldn’t he stand up and intimidate Cruise? I called bullshit and I was distracted with the height thing for the rest of the movie.

Also, if a guy sang you you’ve lost that loving feeling in a bar AND I was his teacher? I don’t know if I could date that guy. I didn’t buy that relationship at all. This movie suffers from what I like to call ‘Zack Morris syndrome’ (see: Saved by the Bell). Basically, the dude is an asshole but gets away with his assholery because he has good teeth and hair.

This movie had the most taking-off-of-sunglasses dramatically scenes I have ever seen.

I give this: Two Beatles…from the Love Me Do song. The simplest song with high crowd factor but no substance.

Posted in Pop Culture, Television

Why ‘Legendary’ is literally Legendary

When I heard this was about ballroom, I was like, there’s a thing with the waltz and the cha-cha-cha? The ballroom scene was jaw dropping to me. Before I insult it, here is the wiki definition:

Ball culture, drag ball culture, the house-ballroom community, and similar terms describe a young African-American and Latin American underground LGBTQ+ subculture that originated in New York City, in which people “walk” (i.e., compete) for trophies, prizes, and glory at events known as balls.

So Legendary is a ball competition for a subculture I didn’t even know existed. The closest thing I’ve seen is probably the musical ‘Rent’ — something I saw in London, loved immediately and didn’t know if Angel was a man, woman….something in between? Didn’t matter, Angel’s voice was amazing and when his bf sings about his death, I always cry (…. sweet kisses, I’ve got to spare, I’ll be there and I’ll cover you….wooooaahhhhh). I think I looked it up later and found out he was gender-fluid.

Anyway, the first 5-10 minutes of ‘Legendary’, I spent really trying to wrap my head around if that person was a man or woman, what were their biological parts, how do they know, etc etc. It wasn’t until I got over my biological gender hang-up that I started to really enjoy the show.

What I was afraid of is what I fear for any minority culture — praising mediocre work just to get the minority into the mainstream. If we are going to shine, it really has to be our best work. Probably why it’s so threatening to whomever hold the white superiority complex, but I think great art comes from great pain, whether we like it or not. I guarantee you if you gave third world countries a million dollar budget, we would see the most amazing art the world has ever seen. But the idea that you are born lucky means that you are superior is bullshit.

Anyway, that’s a whole different post. Back to Legendary. The judges really do make the show at this point. They’re very opinionated and shared a lot of the same views when I watched a mediocre performance versus a standing ovation performance (or it seems, clapping with your fingers and/or snapping seems to be the ultimate compliment). That’s why I was never really into The Voice. It just seemed like a bunch of back up singers with great pipes but missing that sumthin’-sumthin’. For me, it just sounds like mimicry and not like you are living that song in that moment. I think that’s a key to a great performance.

Law Roach is very specific and was responsible for that amazing Zendaya with dreads number (when I started paying attention to her, quite frankly) and realized he was an envelope pusher for a lot of great styles I’ve seen on those entertainment channels. The thing I like most about him is that his fashion choices always make you think….about gender, beauty, dynamics and class. Meghan Thee Stallion and Jamila Jamel I think represents the audience at large and the best of them all — Leiomy Maldanaldo — is the ultimate overall critic. She is one of the most beautiful people I have seen and she doesn’t perform until the LAST EPISODE and you’re like….holy shit, the expert is showing us how it’s done. I love that shit. Also, her outfits are like the most amazing! I wish I could wear that to work everyday. I wonder if I could pull that off. Hmmmm….

First of all — the judges are critical but encouraging. They’ll say why whatever sucked and how to fix it for their next performance. Second of all — it feels like the first competition where there really is no extreme advantage with your gender nor race. Third of all — being surrounded by people who are accepting of every shape, size, gender ID…etc…is so inspiring. It’s how I feel the arts should really be like instead of the same vanilla straight guy narrative we’ve been choking down the past 100 years or so.

Anyway — if you want to see some groundbreaking, amazing (reality!) television, check out Legendary.

Rating: Doritos type binge watching. (I think Doritos is the most addicting chip, which is why I never eat it).

Posted in Movies, Pop Culture

Scariest Movies ever

  1. Event Horizon — I couldn’t even sleep with the lights on.
  2. Thriller by Michael Jackson — I haven’t been able to watch werewolves movies since. I ALWAYS watch it behind my fingers.
  3. The Babadook. It’s so good that I want to watch it again but too scared to do it.
  4. Pumpkinhead — Lance Reddick doing Pet Sematary shit with his son. NO THANK YOU SIR!
  5. Blair Witch Trial — children looking down in corners creep me out.

Movies that tried to be Scary

  • Children of the Corn 3 — first scene…two teenagers are making out in a corn field and then the girl says…hold on a sec, something is poking my back…..AHHHHHH! It’s a severed hand! CHILDREN OF THE CORN 3 TITLE CARD.
  • Poltergeist 1 or 3 — whichever movie that has the boyfriend of the older sister…there’s a scene where he falls in a puddle in the garage and when they pull him out, they ask where the baddies are and he says…in the garage…IN THE GARAGE….IN THE GARAGE!!!! *sobs*
  • Birdemic — Was this supposed to be scary or funny? Like, go all the way in a specific direction.
  • Everything after the original Scream. The original Scream was awesome for it’s meta-examination of scary movie tropes….then becomes a parody of itself. Should’ve just stuck to the first one Wes Craven (I have a feeling this is some studio exec’s decision though).

Posted in Books, Movies, Pop Culture

The Martian — book vs. movie

I saw the movie first and read the book second. Here are some questions I THOUGHT the book would answer:

  • Does Kristen Wiig have a bigger backstory in the book? — Nope.
  • Does Childish Gambino have a bigger backstory in the book? — Nope. He also pops up and disappears in the movie, just like he does in the book.
  • Does Matt Damon really talk that much science in the book? — He does and it drones on and on and I’m like, get to the action already! I’m not an astronaut.
  • How about the ending? He doesn’t end up at a school. I actually don’t quite remember what happens in the book. I think…they all just return home and the captain likes disco….the end.
  • I expected more ABBA. Disappointed on both fronts in the movie and in the book.
  • Do we think Matt Damon lost all that weight? Or RDJ – Avengers – Endgame CGI?
  • Some award should be awarded to Matt Damon pulling out that metal thing and auto-stitching himself. I never quite believed it in Terminator 2.

Overall, the movie has high replay value. I don’t expect to read the book again because Ridley (we’re pals, Ridley and I) did a pretty good job covering the tone and the characters. The secondaries were wasted (except for Gambino’s trip…I was like…was that on purpose?) but the captain, the crew and Matt Damon are all loveable.

Ranking / Rating — (I haven’t figured this out yet, so I’m going to make it up along the way) Three out of Four Beatles.

Posted in Lists, Movies, Pop Culture

Favorite Journalism Movies

I feel in another multiverse, I was probably either a really good detective or a journalist, trying to bring justice to some sort of injustice. Well, I’m also extremely clumsy and I’m not made for gun chases– which is what happens in all journlism movies. Also, there’s always a scene with a multi-layer car garage. What is that about? Car garages sure do get a lot more action than the hundreds of car garages I have waded through. You’d think I’d see a shoot out or a deep throat type of interaction (i’m talking fbi mode) by now because the occurrence in movies is super high.

But, I digress. Time will tell who are next round of journalists are going to be. I think Lisa Ling will be one of ’em, if she’s not already.

5. Good Night and Good Luck

4. The Insider

3. Frost / Nixon

2. Spotlight

1. All the Presidents Men

Posted in Pop Culture, Television

Shows I’m into right now

As if anybody cares but I like writing lists. It makes me feel productive.

  1. Watchmen (love love love so far — especially the soundtrack. Damn Trent Reznor + Atticus Ross)
  2. Succession (The human footstool cracks me the fuck up)
  3. Better Call Saul (Quite possibly better than Breaking Bad)
  4. The Marvelous Ms. Maisel (Tony Shaloub!!)
  5. Killing Eve (I don’t know who I’m rooting for here, the killer or the rookie spy)
  6. Legion (Where’s Oliver??? 😦 )
  7. Silicon Valley (I really wish there was a decentralized internet)
  8. The Good Wife (Each season seems to get worse. I’m on Season 5. What happened to the kids? Why am I not seeing more Eli? And more Elsbeth. Ugh)