Monday, February 28, 2011

Not My Month

From back pain to frozen bank accounts to being out of work to finding work for a week but having it be useless for the first day to it being the coldest month of the year, it just hasn't been my month.

Just sayin'. There's been no recess.

James Franco: Stoned Is The Way Of The Walk

Gawker knows where it's at.

Today, they explain just how stoned James Franco was when he hosted the Academy Awards last night.

I'd say ''well beyond Pineapple Express''-stoned, but there are better ones in there.

Academy Awards 2011: Meh...

Goddamn are the Oscars ever getting safe.

Best actor, director, screenplay and film - all from the same film - The King's Speech - which, essentially, is: the story of a guy. He's a guy who happens to be King of England, but he's a guy. The movie does everything it can to bring him down to our level, the level of ''just a guy'', with a speech impediment. Lo and fucking behold, at the end of the fucking movie, he can deliver a goddamn speech. It took him two hours of intense training, he even doubted himself at some point, but in the end, he fucking prevailed. Based on a true story.

You know what else was based on a true story, about a fucking guy who wanted something, but something else stood in the fucking way, but two hours later he fucking prevailed? The Fighter. The Social Network. In 2010? The Wrestler. Benjamin Button.

It's the recipe for every fucking damn safe film ever made.

This year, Toy Story 3 was robbed of its Best Picture Oscar, and Inception was robbed for Best Original Screenplay. Keyword: original. Toy Story was more touching and genuinely heart-breaking than any of its live-action counterparts this year. It's a little miracle of a piece of art. And Inception captured the minds of movie-goers for 8 months - and just about no other movie looked as good. Well, Alice In Wonderland looked great, but it was boring as fuck.

I mean, I knew The Imaginarium Of Dr. Parnassus was way too ''out there'' for Academy voters although it was the best, most original, brilliant, inspiring, ground-breaking and eternal film of this year's crop, but Inception was its more viewer-friendly distant cousin of sorts. And it got a lot of the technical awards, which it deserved.

It's just that in general, this year's crop of winners were too safe: give the huge studios their candy, give a few to the independent films, and give the British period piece the good shit. Melissa Leo's acceptance speech was the best, and no one thanked God. And a few thanked their same-sex life partners (in the Year Of Lesbian Films, no less) - which will probably get the right-wing sociopaths pundits to say the godless Hollywood elite rewarded themselves again - and everyone thanked their parents. Which is good - and safe.

The only person who did exactly what he wanted, the way he wanted to do it, without censoring himself was Kirk Douglas, who hit on every woman in sight and seemed to grab Melissa Leo's boob as he escorted her backstage. Because he doesn't give a fuck, and because he is fully aware that he's lived longer than he has left, and he'll let no one get in his way or in the way of what he wants to do.

Host-wise, Anne Hathaway was alright, but pretty-boy James Franco seemed at times stiff as a corpse, and other times too stoned to function. I miss Jon Stewart and Chris Rock, but perhaps the Academy should think of trying out Stephen Colbert, Jon Lovitz or Johnny Depp - people who would do nothing to displease the mass audience but could also have a second degree for people who like to think. Or why not George Clooney? He's Hollywood royalty and is a definite charmer and crowd pleaser.

When the winners are bland, with no Kathryn Bigelow (first female director), no Halle Berry (first black woman), no Michael Moore (politically active and hugely outspoken on current issues), no Roberto Benigni (the surprise winner who walks over people to get his prize), no ground-breaking and genre-changing film à la Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction, the hosts have to provide the entertainment, steal the show, stir the pot. This year's eye candy did not.

Should the Academy insist on having two hosts at once, here are a few suggestions: Brad Pitt and Jennifer AnistonSnoop Dogg and Cheech MarinTrey Parker and Matt Stone; or Quentin Tarantino and Kevin Smith. And, especially for the last two couples, let them write their own scripts. Then go nuts and nominate innovative films. It'll feel like the 60s and 70s again - good.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Context. Antoine Dodson. Hide Your Kids.

In case you didn't get what the title of my last post referred to, I decided to revisit a terrible crime (or attempted crime) that became a tremendously catchy song thanks to the magic of Auto-tune.

The back-story: there was a break-in in Madison County, AL, but instead of trying to steal stuff, the alleged criminal crawled into the bed of a sleeping Kelly Dodson and tried to rape her. Her brother, Antoine Dodson, came in to help, but the criminal escaped.

Then the media heard of the story and TV reporters were dispatched on the scene. Antoine proved to be highly quotable, and The Gregory Brothers remixed his voice into one of their catchy songs, fast-tracking Dodson to web immortality.

Here it is, first the story, then the video and song:

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Hide Your Kids, Hide Your Wife. Wait, No, Just Hide The Kids

I can't believe I missed it during the last Holiday season: the fucking Pope - the one in service right now who looks like the evil Emperor from the Star Wars films, Pope Benedict XVI - claimed pedophilia was just a sign of the times, that it was ''fully in conformity with man and children''.

This, from the same man who said:
laws which legalize same-sex marriage contribute to the weakening of the principles of natural law,” and to “confusion about society’s values,” and claimed that same-sex marriage “attacks” the “endangered species” that is mankindEven before he was elected Pope, he knew of the pedophile priest sex abuse scandalyet did not act.
Jesus fucking Christ.

It's no wonder some are attempting (uselessly, I'm afraid) to have him answer for The Church's crimes and opinions.

Friday, February 25, 2011

How The Back Pain Creeps Back Into My Life When I Least Expect It

Two years ago, out of nowhere, I came upon the worst stretch of back pain I'd ever had. It's back. Not as bad as back then - I can move, walk (with a cane), sleep. But the second-worst of my life, definitely.

It's at the bottom of my back completely, and it stops me from being able to get up when I'm seated or lying down, or even walk properly. And when the pain hits, it's sudden, and strong enough to will me directly to my knees - which I no longer do, because it's even more of a pain to get up from.

It's the reason why I haven't been posting for the last few days - my back can't handle my fucking chair. It wasn't just that I was content with finally averaging more than a post per day in a given month for the first time, I promise.

It's cost me a trip to Québec City with the Lindbergh Line, and has made my tolerance towards bankers dissipate. I think I'll eat red meat tonight, it'll give me the impression that I killed something, which might quench my desire to do just that.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Arcade Fire Backlash(es)

Two Sundays ago, Arcade Fire won the Grammy for Best Album (before winning the Brit awards two days later), beating the likes of Eminem, Katy Perry... and enraged a shitload of Justin Bieber fans. Which, of course, is good in itself. Now, if they could just kill themselves in protest...
Uh... no it's not. Just like it wasn't when New Kids On The Block didn't beat Guns N' Roses, just like it wasn't when the Backstreet Boys and N'Sync and Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera and the Spice Girls co-existed... wait, yes, that was weird. No, actually, no, it was boring. And safe. But mostly boring.

The most common response from ''common people'', of course, was: ''Who is Arcade Fire?'', as can be seen in this clip:

And Facebook posts like this one:
The legality? Like having a decent band win over mass-dump-whore-pop-that-will-be-forgotten-in-5-years is illegal or something?
I guess since she came out, Rosie O'Donnell's finger is elsewhere than on the pulse of the youth...

This clip answers the question, albeit a tad too well:

With the obvious ''their song was in the trailer for Where The Wild Things Are'' bit and all. But what I find funniest from talk show people is they were all given free promo copies of the Grammys 2010 Nominees in which Arcade Fire appear, of course, and where it's specified they're in the running for two of the top prizes. And yet, as half-assed journalists, they never felt the need to inquire further about this mystery act?

They had better beware, because hipsters just might attack them for their ignorance:

For more Arcade Fire fun, make sure to visit the blog: Who Is Arcade Fire. Hour of fun.