Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Top 5: Movies to Make You Cry

So yesterday, I asked if Gran Torino is the new Bravehart (the movie to make men cry), and apparently Braveheart never made any man cry, ever. My intel must be faulty. However, something good did come out this debacle...a post idea! Here now are the top 5 movies that made me cry like a little baby*:

In America - The story of Irish immigrants in America makes me weep every time I see it. Liz watched it recently and said she just got teary. Obviously, Liz = No Soul.

Dances With Wolves - I don't even remember now why it made me cry so hard, but I remember the friend I saw it with said to me after I'd cried through the end credits, "Why are you still crying?" Obviously, that "friend" = No Soul.

Searching For Bobby Fischer - This movie is about a little boy who plays chess. Chess! Who cries at the freaking chess movie?!? I do, apparently. I guess I related to the pressure little Josh (chess boy) felt to be amazing at something, realizing he'd always come up short.

Sense and Sensibility - When Elinor bursts into tears at the end because [Spoiler Alert!] she realizes Edward didn't marry that terrible skeeze, I lose it. Every time.

A Mighty Heart - I didn't realize until halfway through the film that Daniel Pearl was the reporter who was beheaded in Pakistan (I'm not so good with the names sometimes) and I spent the rest of the movie worried they would show the actual beheading. What I should have worried about was the gut wrenching final scene when Angelina realizes her husband is dead. What a mess that made me.

So, many of you noted the movies that made you cry in the comments yesterday, but if you didn't, get on it! I know you're all so stoic and nothing makes you cry, ever, but just make something up if you must.

* It should be noted, I cry at, well, a lot. I mean, I refused to let anyone watch the Gilmore Girls series finale with me because I knew I'd cry through the whole damn thing...and I did.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Add This to Your Queue: Gran Torino

Remember when we used to "review" movies on this site? Let's give that another whirl, shall we?

Saturday afternoon, I popped in Gran Torino, the Clint Eastwood movie from last year that wasn't The Changeling. (Seriously, how does this old man keep pumping out 2 movies in a year?! Madness, I say!) I'd heard great things about the movie and Eastwood's performance and, I must say, the hype was warranted.

Eastwood plays Walt Kowalski, a veteran of the Korean war who's recently lost his wife. He lives in a once lovely neighborhood in Detroit (apparently, those did exist at one point), now rundown and almost exclusively Asian (we are to believe Walt it the last remaining white dude). Needless to say, the combination of PTSD from Korea and Asian neighbors is not such a good mix for old Walt. Anyway, through a series of events, Walt becomes close with the two teenagers next door and a wacky comedy of cultural and generational misunderstandings ensues. (I kid, I kid. There is very little wackiness (though Walt is racist as hell and it's pretty amusing. Only Eastwood could make this curmudgeonly character so lovable)). It's actually an interesting look at culture clashes and the lack of respect paid to the heroic elders in this country. Funny, sad, political and thought provoking, Gran Torino is absolutely worth your 2 hours and your tears.

P.S. If you've seen this and you are male, please comment of my theory that this is the new Braveheart (i.e. the movie to make men cry). Thank you in advanced.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

RIP Michael Jackson

This (mostly) Just In...

Transformers 2: Now with More Racial Stereotypes! - Apparently, the new Transformers movie has twin robots who have gold teeth, talk jive and can't read. Yet somehow, I still believe Shia can save this travesty. My devotion is truly admirable.

Dave Mathews Band: Now with More Shitty Hippie Music! - I won't lie...I liked DMB when I was, like, 18 and didn't know better. Now, I'd file the release of their new album under Things I'm Pretty Sure No One Asked For.

Red: Now with More Sunshine and Happiness! - You guys, I've decided to try and be nicer and friendlier to people (girls on my softball and trivia teams are my inspirations) because it seems sunny people have things called "friends" and "relationships with people rather than televisions." So, we'll see how that goes. I told my friend Nik of my plans to not be so gloomy and he said, "Yeah, we'll see how long that lasts." So nice to have supportive people around you, doncha think?

All my new friends and me in a month or so. I'm the lady in blue, obvs.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

So you're saying the Hannah Montana Movie has a chance?

The Academy is going to nominate 10 films this year for the Best Picture Oscar. Ten! Because that broadcast isn't nearly as long and self-indulgent as it could be.

These are for sound editing ALONE!!!

Apparently they used to do this back in the day, and since we're in the middle of The Great Depression: Version 2.0, Hollywood thought it would be fun to make it feel even more like the '30s. I'm not sure if this means more good movies or more crap will get Best Picture nods, but one thing's for sure: This will finally be the year that your "take a shot every time there's a montage or clip package" will give everyone at your party alcohol poisoning. Hooray for Hollywood!

Harry Potter: The Musical

Holy cats, you guys! Apparently, the University of Michigan did a Harry Potter musical recently and now the entire thing is on YouTube. The opening number looks totally rad:

Oh, how I miss my nerdy musical theater roots sometimes.

P.S. I'm assuming this will get the same response I received when I sent this to Garney and Liz (aka deafening silence (something must be wrong with my gmail!)), but I don't care. I'll post what I want and you'll like it!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

My Current Obsession

My current obsession is Hoyt Fortenberry* from True Blood. I like Hoyt because he is cute and nice and loves his mom. I also like Hoyt because he doesn't like skeezy girls. Someday, I would like to meet a boy like Hoyt, but that will probably never happen because he only exists in my television.**

* Note I am not obsessed with the actor who plays Hoyt (aka Jim Parrack, who literally just got a Wikipedia page...not that I've been, like, looking for one or anything) because he is engaged to some girl who is not me and that's just how I roll.

** Also, I don't know why this is written like I'm 10 and recapping my summer vacation. I may be losing it.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Top 5: All Time Gingers

Since this week is apparently "Top 5 List" week, I thought I'd keep it rolling with a list I really can't believe we haven't made yet. Here are my Top 5 Gingers:

Molly Ringwald - The Queen of the 80's teen flick, Molly is my hero for giving Farmer Ted her undies, telling Steff what's what and dancing her ass off in the library.

Jenny Lewis - The Queen of Indie Rock. One of Let's Make Out's best songs at the moment is Jenny's "Acid Tongue."

Conan O'Brien - The funniest Tonight Show host since Carson.

Elizabeth I - My all time hero. Beth the First wouldn't marry because she knew it would mean giving up her power, so she just had dudes write her zillions of love poems instead. One of the OG feminists.

Ron Weasley - So, he's fictional. We still love him more than most real people. And this reminds us HP6 is out in theaters in less than a month! Huzzah!

Your favorite gingers in the comments, please.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Top 5 Movies that Dave likes but most other people think are retarded

It's been so long since posting here, that I pretty much forgot how Blogspot works. OK, I hit these things with letters on them and stuff comes up on the screen. Got it.

So like McDonald's Dollar Menu, fantasy sports and genital warts, there are certain things in life that I find both facinating and enjoyable, but that most of you other quasi-intelligent humanoids out there find either dumb, repulsive, pointless and/or all of the above.

Well since our "staff" here is relishing in top 5 posts, it's only fitting to jump on board in the trademark witty, sophomoric Dave H. fashion. So here we go, if you don't like any of these movies then you are a major hater, and ergo fuck you...

1) Double Team (1997)-Jean Claude Van Dam and Dennis Rodman

In this action/adventure epic, Van Dam plays a counter-terrorist agent chasing some random, semi-competent euro-trash villian named Stavros. However, his target proves quite elusive and cunning, thereby requiring the assistance of a Swiss black-market arms dealer named Yaz, played by none other then Dennis Rodman. Needless to say, most people will pre-judge this flick as gi-normously retarded just from the main two stars. But no, this is one non-stop thrill ride, culminating in a over-the-top romp in the Roman Colusieum which involves an underground bomb, rocket launchers and rabid Bengal tiger! And the hoop-related one liners utterd by the Worm are simply priceless:

(Throws two guys through a car window, simulataneously knocking out both of them and the drive)--

"That's a Three Pointer"

(Tosses a stick of dynamite down a manhole, blowing up a bunch of terrorists)

"Just like a Free Throw"

If you've seen this movie and hated it, raise your hand. OK, all those people with your hands raised, you're stupid.

2) Cabin Boy (1994)-Chris Elliot

Our favorite star of Get A Life stars in this hilarious comedy:

"Snobby school boy goes left, and mistakes the "Filthy Whore" for his millionaire dad's yacht. He joins four filthy fishermen for hijinx on the high seas." (IMDB)

It's been a while since watching this one, but rest assured the laughes in this movie are as countless as they are tasteless. The "Do You Wann Buy a Monkey" line is prehaps David Letterman's greatest cinematic achievement, and as I recall there is also some great herpes and gay pirate humor mixed in. Instant classic to me, instantly repulsive to most.

3) Benji: The Hunted (1987)-Benji The Dog

Basically, Benji's dumb-ass owners somehow loss the fucking dog, and he ends up in the "wilderness" of the Oregon coastline. In this harrowing tale about bravery, friendship and the will to survive, some asshole hunter shots this mother cougar, with Benji randomly bearing witness to the entire grizzly scene. He then stumbles upon four of the orphaned cougar kittens, taking them in and protecting them as his own while also trying to figure out how to return to his masters. Nature fucks shit up, though. There is a bad-ass wolf the does something if I recall, and one of the cubs gets preyed upon by some kind of giant eagle/flying bird. Honestly, the nature cinematography is pretty cool. In the end, since it's Disney, everything turns out OK, and the dog licks the shit out of some stupid kid's face. However, it is nice to occasionally watch a movie with lots of nature and little to no dialogue for a Hollywood screenwriter to mess up. So cuddle up with a pint of Knob Creek and a package of salami, and enjoy the ride (god knows I'm probably the only one that did).

4) The Fish That Saved Pittsburgh (1979)- Julius Erving, Johnathan Winters, Kareen Abdul-Jabbar

"The Pitsburgh Pythons basketball team is hopeless, and the worst team in the NBA. Maybe with the aid of an astrologer, and some new astrologicly compatable players, they can become winners. They in turn decide to hold open tryouts and they only select players who are born under the same zodiac sign, Pisces. And what they get are some weirdos but when they play together, they are phenomenal. " (IMDB)

Awesome flick, and in my opinion a much better watch then the hockey cult classic "Slap Shot." Then again, I'm biased due to liking a basketball better and being a Pisces born in 1979. This was Major Leage before there was Major League, except nobody really liked or watched it for some reason. The awesomeness of this movie is hard to put into words, so check out the team intros for the "Championship Game" between Los Angeles and Pitt. Keep your eye out for a stoned Kareem and Marv Albert (pre hooker-biting version):

5) Alexander (2004)- Colin Farrell

So pretty much every critic and friend that I know who has watched it has shit/pissed/both on this movie. Too long, too boring, too much stuff that probably never happened. However, for me it was an extremely interesting historical drama, in which the liberties that Ollie Stone took added depth and intrigue to perhaps the greatest world leader in all of history. Murdering his best friend in a drunken rage, taking on a savage Asian concumbine and a decent into madness upon invading India are all wonderful brushstrokes in this portrait of a most complicated individual. (NOTE: author DID NOT ENJOY guys making out in this movie).

So there you have it. If you are somehow on board with me on ALL FIVE of these masterpieces, then I suggest that you call your therapist and book an extra 2-3 sessions per month. Late.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Top 5: Popular Movies I don't Get

Even Adm. Adama in kabuki makeup couldn't make this thing interesting

You know those movies that the whole world gushes over and says you MUST SEE, so you do, and then you’re kind of left thinking, “Huh”? You don’t exactly hate it, but you don’t see what the fuss is all about either. Well, here are five of mine:

Bladerunner – According to this movie, in ten years, Los Angeles will be a dystopian hellscape of slow pacing and predictable plot twists. Really, who didn’t see it coming that Sean Young’s character is a replicant? I mean, besides the main character ... who is supposed to be a great detective. This movie made me fall asleep on both a young Harrison Ford and Rutger Hauer, which is unforgivable in and of itself.

Glengarry Glen Ross – Maybe it’s the overacting, maybe it’s the overwraught script, maybe it’s the fact that it looks like it was shot with a camcorder in a local public access studio, but I just couldn’t get into this David Mamet “classic.”

Caddyshack – Seriously guys, there’s like three funny lines in the whole movie. Stop. Quoting. It.

The Matrix – Yeah, the special effects are cool. I’ll give you that. But when this movie came out, everyone was hailing how “smart” and “groundbreaking” it was. As if no one had ever imagined that the world around us was just a false construct. (Hello: Alice in Wonderland, The Truman Show, pretty much every person ever over the age of 6). Plus, it stars Keanu Reeves, and all the CGI in the world can’t give that nice young man acting chops.

Gone with the Wind – Four hours of watching an Antebellum Paris Hilton learn that sometimes life is hard? Frankly my dear, I don’t give a [hoot].*

*Edited because this is a family blog.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Top 5: Songs about "Taboo" Subjects

I don't know why I thought of this topic. Just go with me here:

1. Suicide: "Jeremy" by Pearl Jam - This one has San Diego ties.

2. Abortion: "Brick" by Ben Folds Five - My friends and I debated for hours whether this song was about AIDS or abortion. Ahhh, the innocence of youth.

3. Masturbation: "Longview" by Green Day - My now uber Mormon friend and I used to sing this song while playing foosball in her garage. Seriously, good times.

4. Heroin/Crippling Depression: "Hurt" by Nine Inch Nails - I kinda like the Johnny Cash version better.

5. Mass Murder: "Nebraska" by Bruce Springsteen - Springsteen recounts the story of Charles Starkweather and his teenage girlfriend and their killing spree across the US in late 50's. The song is kinda creepy...just like the true story, which inspired Oliver Stone's Natural Born Killers.

So, what do you think? Agree? Disagree? Am I creepy for even imagining this post? You know what? Don't answer that last one...

Friday, June 12, 2009

Don't try to define me, man!

Netflix is kind of like my Mom: We love each other to death, but it doesn’t really “get” me.

Netflix is always making suggestions to me based on movies I’ve rented and rated, but the suggestions rarely pan out. I mean, “You liked Kill Bill, you’ll probably like Face Off"? What kind of big bang created the universe in which that makes sense?

But it’s really adorable just how hard Netflix is trying. Like, they keep coming up with these increasingly specific, yet totally incongruous categories of movies. My favorites have been arriving the past few days. Yesterday – based on a recent rental of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – there was a list of “Emotional Medical Dramas.” Today, based on my giving The Silence of the Lambs five stars, there’s a category called, “Critically Acclaimed Violent Crime Movies.” And finally, my favorite: After I queued up Frozen River, they gave me a category called, “Emotional Dramas Featuring a Strong Female Lead.” (A category which includes The Duchess. OK ….)

This is kind of making me want to add just a shitload of random movies to my queue to see if I can get recommendations for things like, “Suspenseful Blaxpoitation set in the Midwest,” or “Derivative 1980s Teen Comedy with a Pleasing Geeky Sidekick to Evil Jock Ratio.” Any thoughts on how I can accomplish this? We’re all in this together people!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

David Letterman is Awesome

I haven't watched the Late Show in years (as you know, I'm a grandma) but I've always loved David Letterman, and this clip just reminded me why.

Seems Dave got himself into trouble recently because made some jokes about Sarah Palin's family trip to New York. He said that the toughest part for them was keeping Eliot Spitzer away from their daughter, and said that Alex Rodriguez knocked their daughter up during the 7th inning stretch of a Yankee game.

The Palin's find out about it, and issued these blistering statements about how Letterman was joking about child rape and stuff.

So Letterman goes on the air to apologize, as only he can. You have to watch it to get the full affect, but I just think he handles it perfectly. See, the real problem was, the Palin's took their 14-year-old daughter on the trip with them, not the 18-year-old one that everyone knows about, the one with the baby. But all that aside (and politics aside: this really has nothing to do with the Palins as people or politicians) I think Letterman does a really good job of pointing out some of the absurdity of the whole "I say something controversial, you freak out, I apologize, someone else says something controversial, and on and on and on" thing that goes on nowadays, but without actually coming out and saying it, you know?

By the way, can he please get rid of Paul Shaffer?

Nice Guys are the New Bad Boys

You know how sometimes you read a sentence or see a moment in a film or hear a lyric that totally makes you say out loud to no one, "Holy crap, that is dead on!" Such was my reaction to this post about "nice guys" (which I especially loved because generalizations are awesome). Penned by a gay man, the post discusses the "new" nice guy...the one who claims to be unlike "all the other guys," but is really out to get laid like every other guy in the known universe (nice touch with the Cusack photos throughout, as Johnny pretty much encompasses this idea like no other). Read it to capture the true brilliance, but in case you are unwilling to click, here's his list of signs that maybe a guy isn't so nice after all:
1. Does he think he's awkward? If he describes himself as awkward, there's a problem. (To quote Edith Wharton: "[T]he inner vanity is generally in proportion to the outer self-depreciation.") We're misusing that word most of the time anyway. If everyone's awkward, then no one's awkward, okay? (That's the closest I'll ever come to Ayn Rand Objectivist thought.)

2. Is he a currently attractive former geek? That's a red flag. He's probably not looking to settle down, even if he plays you Sufjan on his guitar. He's most likely looking for help discovering his newfound hotness.

3. Does he perform improv and have a huuuuge crush on Tina Fey? Look out! You might think those loose-fitting khakis paired with Nike sneakers are endearing and the prospect of having a guy watch Mean Girls with you sounds like a dream come true now, but it's only because he thinks she's a hottie on 30 Rock. Would he have dated her in college?

4. Does he still listen to The Shins? All I'm going to say is that the dude from The Shins roughed up his America's Next Top Model girlfriend. I didn't even see that one coming.

5. Does he have a blog? YIKES.

Just un-freaking-canny.

Does this mean we get the day off?

Huzzah! Swine Flu has officially been declared a "Pandemic" by the WHO. (BTW, since when does Pete Townsend declare world wide health emergencies?)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Programming Notes

Some exciting TV happenings this week:

Top Chef Masters
- Premiering tonight on Bravo, TCM takes real, famous-ish chefs and makes them compete, Cajun Style! Err, I mean, Top Chef Style! Pros: Professional chefs should make for some amazing food porn and all the winnings go to charity. Cons: No Tom Colliccio and no Tom Colliccio. Let's all see if life without Tom is worth living, shall we?

Pushing Daisies Finale - Saturday night will be our last night with Ned and Chuck and Olive and Emerson. Apparently, creator Bryan Fuller had enough notice to wrap things up for us in a somewhat satisfying way. Is it bad that I kinda want Ned and Chuck to finally kiss even though that means she'll die again?

True Blood Season 2 - The best HBO show since, well, Big Love starts it's second season Sunday night. Liz is watching season 1 now and I cannot wait to have True Blood viewing parties. You are invited, too, obviously.

Also, is anyone watching Rescue Me this season? It has some really brilliant moments that blow my effing mind. Catch up on Hulu if you can.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

You Are Enough

After some not so flattering pictures of me surfaced on the Facebooks (this is why you must always control the distribution of photos yourself. Life lessons, people!), I decided maybe I need to take my exercise routine from theoretical to actual. So I perused the Fit TV section of On Demand housed in Coach Taylor (aka my DVR) and came across Cardioke. Basically, it's a dance workout that encourages you to sing along (thus reaping, like, double cardio goodness or something. I didn't sing out loud because I didn't think the neighbors would appreciate me jumping up and down AND singing. I do have some manners, you know). Anyway, Cardioke is brought to you by the son of the Tae Bo king, Billy Blanks Jr and it's actually kinda fun (in a dorky, at home workout kind of way. Don't you judge me!)

All that to say, the cool down number is the most unintentionally hilarious thing, maybe, ever. As Billy Jr. explains in the clip, his wife was inspired by all the emails people sent in about their struggles with weight loss so she wrote this song. Just...watch:

So remember today, you are enough. You're welcome.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Rank: The Coen Brothers

Yesterday, I finally watched Blood Simple and have now watched all 13 of the Coen Brother's films. Here's how I'd rank them. Try to tell me I'm wrong:

The Good
1. No Country for Old Men
2. The Big Lebowski
3. Fargo
4. Raising Arizona
5. O Brother, Where Art Thou?
6. Miller's Crossing
7. Blood Simple
8. Barton Fink
9. The Man Who Wasn't There
10. Burn After Reading

The Bad
11. The Ladykillers
12. The Hudsucker Proxy

The Intolerable
13. Intolerable Cruelty

Well, am I right or am I right?

Lyric of the Day: Broadway Edition

Hey! The Tonys were on last night!
"And if I'm flying solo, at least I'm flying free."

- Wicked "Defying Gravity"

Friday, June 5, 2009

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Lyric of the Day*

With the Not Being Very Inspired to Blog Lately bug infecting most of the interwebs, I though, "Hey! Why not just post some stuff other people said." Laziness accomplished.

"I told myself the only way to vaguely get along in love is to like the other slightly less than you get in return. I keep feeling like I'm being undercut."

- Los Campesinos "We are Beautiful, We are Doomed"

* I tend towards really depressing lyrics sometimes. Just, you know, as a heads up.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

What's your Damage?

You guys!! According to Winona Ryder they're making a sequel to Heathers. Well, f*ck me gently with a chainsaw! This is fantastic news.
Teenage suicide/don't do it

The Band is Back: And This Time, it's Serious!

I've mentioned our band before...the one Liz and I formed and call Let's Make Out. Until this weekend, it was mostly just a joke...an idea we talked about, but never really did anything about. Dave would ask "How's Let's Make Out?" and we'd say, "Still theoretical." Well, theorize no more friends! This weekend, we had our first official band practice. Liz hooked up her ax to the amp and I tried to pretended it hasn't been forever since I used my voice for anything other than screaming Kelly Clarkson songs in my car. We plan on tackling an open mic night soon and then, as Liz said, "After our first open mic appearance, we'll immediately be the darlings of the local Coffee House scene. We'll outgrow that by July, and start playing gigs at the Casbah. This will lead to a short but flattering write up in Pitchfork, and by September we'll be signed to the same label as Sufjan Stevens and touring Europe." Totally happening.

I just thought I should give you, our loyal friends and readers, a heads up so you can brag about "knowing" us before we were big. Also, Let's Make Out merch is gonna be huge!!!

Monday, June 1, 2009


I was reading this morning about how the last living survivor of the Titanic just died. But the article totally buried the lead. Let me explain:

Millvina “You Just Don’t Hear Names like Anymore” Dean was only 8 weeks old when her family set sail on the Titanic in 1912. They were leaving England to go live in America, as was the custom in at the time. Little Millie, her mother and her two-year-old brother made it into a lifeboat, but her father went down with the ship. (Like a real man, Cal!)

But here is the freaky part: Millvina died on May 31, the 98th anniversary of the Titanic’s launch. Her brother died in 1982 – on the 80th anniversary of the ship’s sinking. How creepy is that?!?!?! Am I the only one who finds this extremely creepy!?!?!?

Yeah. I probably am.

Can someone please seriously make this movie?