Tuna and I disagreed strongly on this one. He liked it, and I
felt it was nearly a complete waste of my time. The damned thing
doesn't even really have a script, just a premise: some recent
college grads are in Europe for a last fling before assuming adult
responsibilities, and some of them are reconsidering their
commitment to join the rat race. That's it. Pretty much the entire
script. The rest was some laid-back "winging it," and the dialogue
basically just consisted of repeating the premise again and again in
different words. "Why are you here, son?" "Oh, I'm having a last
fling before my job starts, but I'm reconsidering whether to join
the rat race." When the star (Joshua Jackson) is not mouthing the
trite dialogue, he's keeping a journal of drawings and poetry which
would embarrass a 13 year old girl. Dennis Hopper is on hand
as an American expatriate club owner, and he delivers some
dialogue which is only peripherally related to the plot, and sounds
to have been not only improvised, but also influenced by vast
quantities of mind-altering chemicals.
The complete lack of a
script is matched with some very poor cinematography. The landscapes
are composed nicely, but the action scenes are shot and edited so
confusingly that the characters have to recap what has just happened
with dialogue. Leonor Varela is pretty enough, but is almost always
blurred, or grainy, or improperly lit, or half out of the frame, or
shaking in a hand-held shot. And her allegedly Spanish character
inexplicably speaks English with an accent characteristic of South
American Spanish! ("Are jew coming?", e.g. I have spent months and
months in Spain, and even more time in South America, and I never
heard any Spaniard pronounce "you" this way, but many if not most
South Americans do.) I guess the problem is that the actress,
who does speak Spanish, also actually speaks perfectly unaccented
American English, and her natural speech patterns would not have
been in character, so she fabricated an accent she was familiar
with. (Her father is Chilean, her mother French.)
There are some plusses in the film, and I suppose Tuna responded
- The camera is in love with both Joshua Jackson and Leonor
Varela. Not only are they physically attractive, but they both
come off as very likeable, easy-going, genuine people. Joshua
gives off that nice-guy vibe of a young Tom Selleck, and Leonor
has a kooky, energetic free-spirit thing goin' for her. Their
romance is credible and sometimes fun to watch.
- Part of the film is an actual bullfight - not a staged
re-enactment, but the real thing in real time, filmed with the
permission of the bullfighter. Another portion is the actual
"running of the bulls," with cast members actually participating
on camera. If you have never seen these events, this will open
- The film has an eclectic and sensuous sound track of Spanish
Weird Al interviews Eminem. (Sorta. It's pretty funny.)
My favorite parimutual sport. Siamese midget kick boxing, or "Thai
little persons' combat," for you sensitive folks.
What will the Vikings' new uniforms be? Some concepts
The Straight Dope: Thank you for dying: Did 250 million people in the
industrialized world die from smoking over 10 years?
- As Cecil points out, the number is absurd. The total number of
deaths in the industrialized world, from all causes, was
between 110 million and 125 million deaths in the ten year period
1995-2004. In other words, according to Christopher Buckley's
statistic, smoking causes 200% of all deaths!
- The real number is about two million smoking-related deaths per
year, which represents about one in every six deaths in the
industrialized world. Of course, all of those people would have died
anyway, sooner or later, so from a statistical standpoint, smoking
does not cause more people to die, but causes them to die SOONER.
Therefore, the meaningful statistic is the amount of life lost per
smoker, and the best available answer seems to be 15 years.
The MooTube -
the first internet CowCam
A trailer for 'The Omen,' an updated version of the 1976 horror
Page Six reports that Lara Flynn Boyle is rumored to have arthritis,
- Must be the only paper which reports their report is
unfounded--in the very same report. The Superficial
commented: "What's the point of following up on a lead if you're
going to report it anyway? I might as well make up whatever story I
want and just throw in a "their rep said it wasn't true" at the end.
This just in, Katie Holmes bought a kangaroo to ride around the
house. When asked, her rep responded that the rumors are not true.
My God, it works!"
This week's movies - update:
Silent Hill - 33% positive reviews.
- The critics generally agree. If they were evaluating the look of
the film, it would have close to 100% positives. If they were
evaluating the script and acting, it would be close to zero percent
positive. The only difference from critic to critic in determining
the overall rating is the weight they assign to those elements.
Think of a Ewe Boll film with cinematography by Caleb Deschanel.
Paramount is breathing life into its 'Star Trek' franchise by setting
'Mission: Impossible III' helmer J.J. Abrams to produce and direct the
11th 'Trek' feature
- It will center on the early days of seminal 'Trek' characters
James T. Kirk and Mr. Spock, including their first meeting at
Starfleet Academy and first outer space mission
"Snow White and the Seven Dwarves: A Steamy Adult Morality Tale"
Bush to Assume Presidency in Continuing White House Shakeup
Press Secretary Scott McClellan Will Lie for Food
Great headline from Germany:
"Germany's Golden Boy Displays New Golden Balls"
The trailer for the Lake House - a romantic ghost story
- "A lonely doctor (Sandra Bullock) who once occupied an unusual
lakeside home begins exchanging love letters with its newest
resident, a frustrated architect (Keanu Reeves). When they discover
that they're actually living two years apart, they must try to
unravel the mystery behind their extraordinary romance before it's
This week's movies, update:
American Dreamz - 43% positive reviews
- This is the lampoon of President Bush and American Idol. I
haven't seen it, but to tell you the truth, the negative reviews
seem to have consistently ignored what the movie actually did and
whined about how they wanted it to be angrier, not so safe and
good-natured, not so affectionate and generous, less of a sitcom and
more of a harangue.
- In other words, if you prefer laughs to anger, you may like it
better than the approval numbers might indicate. Ebert and
Gleiberman both praised it, while acknowledging that it's more of a
screwball sitcom than an angry satire.
This week's movies - update:
The Sentinel -35% positive reviews. This is the Secret Service
mystery with Michael Douglas, Kiefer Sutherland, Kim Basinger and Eva
- Some critics were not very kind: "It's obvious that nobody
believed in this project longer than it took for the check to
- "The Sentinel could easily pass for a generic straight-to-DVD
release if it wasn't for the presence of Michael Douglas."
Barney and Fred, as they might be re-imagined by Tobe Hooper
I'm The Decider .... Koo-Koo-Ka-Choo. The Beatles, as interpreted
by the President.
Leaning Tower of Pisa Replica (Be sure to watch the short video
all the way to the end.)
Cargo ship gets wedged into the rocky shore
A 2002-word Palindrome
The international trailer for The Death of Mr. Lazarescu
- Anyone who has waited for treatment in an emergency room or
chafed under the less than devoted care of a disinterested doctor
will recognize Mr. Lazarescu's dilemma. A 60-ish widower, living
alone in Bucharest with his cats, he feels sick enough one evening
to call an ambulance. This is the beginning of his Dantesque odyssey
deep into the bowels of a big city medical establishment. It's a
story that could take place anywhere and Mr. Lazarescu could be your
next-door neighbor – or he could be you.
A clip from Driving Lessons
- Ben (Harry Potter's Rupert Grint) is a shy teenager living in
London who is trying to escape from the clutches of his stern and
religious mother (Laura Linney). He finally gets his chance when he
meets a retired actress (Julie Walters) who whisks him off to
Edinburgh, where he learns to drive, dance, and pick up girls.
Jeremy Brock's loosely autobiographical coming-of-age tale is part
"Harold & Maude" with a dose of "The Graduate." "Driving Lessons" is
the directorial debut for Jeremy Brock (who penned the screenplay
for "Mrs. Brown"). It is also Grint's first starring role after
completing four Harry Potter films. Linney ("You Can Count On Me,"
"Kinsey") and Walters ("Educating Rita," "Billy Elliot") are both
two-time Academy Award® nominees. The film also features an eclectic
soundtrack by artists that include Sufjan Stevens, John Renbourn and
Salsa Celtica. The film is produced by Julia Chasman ("Quills," "The
Dave Barry's pick as "Headline of the Day" ... (real headline):
Butts' competitive juices ignite Dogs
Family Guy meets the Roadrunner
White House Easter Egg Roll Photo Album (Satire from
Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format.
Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.
"South Beach Academy"
South Beach Academy (1996) is a titty flick comedy farce set in Miami. Our hero, Keith Coulouris, works as an instructor for his uncle's Beach Academy, which seems to be more of a private club on the beach. Uncle Gene (Al Lewis) is a gambler and lady's man who has bet everything on a beach volleyball game with "the evil crook" who wants his valuable real estate. Coulouis's brother, Corey Feldman, shows up in town and tries to help. The story revolves around convincing Elizabeth Kaitan, a former Olympic volleyball player, and her team, to play for the academy. The main point of the film was to show female breasts, which they did early and often, including Elizabeth Kaitan, Tiffany Cara, Kristina Rodriguez, Ute Weigel, Amy Lynn Rosenthal, Patricia Edmunds, Lorelei Leslie and a host of unknowns.
We had a topless car wash, a strip club where one of the team worked under Ron Jeremy, topless score card holders, and random topless on the beach girls.
IMDb readers say 4.8, and I tend to agree. While the constant parade of hooters is nice, there needs to be something else to sustain a film, and this one was missing it. The transfer was nto at all good, as the video was over-saturated and blown out through much of the film. This is not good when you are basing your entire film on eye candy. This is a D.
From DeadLamb, here is "American Idol" judge Paula Abdul showing off about 4 acres of cleavage while stopping by "The Tonight Show".
next up, here is Cameron Diaz showing a little leg and a little cleavage as well in scenes from "In Her Shoes" (2005).
Jennifer Elise Cox is probably best known as 'Jan Brady' from "The Brady Bunch Movie" (1995) and "A Very Brady Sequel" (1996), Nowadays, she mostly does guest spots on about a billion TV shows. Here she is showing a thong view and wearing some lingerie while on an episode of "CSI: NY".
Pat's comments in yellow...
CELEBRITY BABY HYSTERIA ROUND-UP
He Was, And Is, An Absolute Creep - Tom Cruise praised Katie Holmes for
staying silent during childbirth, with the help of an epidural, saying, "Kate was,
and is, an absolute champ." The London Sun tabloid claims Cruise recorded the
birth and within hours, his car was seen leaving the hospital for the Church
of Scientology Center. A Scientology insider claimed that Tom would be
required to report back to senior church officials about whether the birth was
silent and if Katie was given drugs. He would also have to hand over all notes and
recordings for them to decide if anything traumatic happened that would
require Katie to undergo extra auditing.
* Or, if she screamed even once, human sacrifice.
* I can't imagine that Katie Holmes might have gone through anything
* I'd rather be audited by the IRS; they're more reasonable.
* It looked like the masked, black-robed orgy scene in "Eyes Wide Shut."
* Can't they just read every detail of the birth in the tabloids, like
Prince William, Maybe - Tom and Katie's baby is already old news: the
tabloids are refocusing on Namibia to await Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's baby.
Ignoring hungry lions and government warnings not to harass the celebrities,
reporters are packing villages near the game preserve resort where the pair is
hiding out. In a feature on the hysteria, New York magazine quoted a gossip
insider as saying this "could be the most beautiful baby in the world." The
magazine said, "Not since Jesus has a baby been so eagerly anticipated."
* By tabloid reporters...Nobody else gives a crap about other people's baby
* The difference is that when Jesus was born, wise men flocked to see Him.
* Jesus could return at any time, but the media would be too busy with this
* There's only one explanation: this baby will be the Anti-Christ.
* On the bright side, hungry lions and too many tabloid reporters are two
problems that could solve themselves.
MADONNA PLANS DISCO CRUCIFIX
Critics Will Crucify Her - Madonna may be a Kabbalah convert, but she's still
using Catholic imagery to shock audiences. The London Sun reports that shows
on her new concert tour will start with Madonna descending from the ceiling
on a giant cross covered with diamonds and crystals, like a disco ball. The
disco crucifix reportedly cost over $10 million, and an insider said, "It'll
create a blinding light, like she is landing on the spaceship from 'E.T.'"
* This is so nobody will be able to see her wrinkles.
* A giant cross covered with diamonds...She's now ripping off ideas from
* Madonna's audience might be reaching the age where it's not a good idea to
tick off God.
* If she's so into Kabbalah, let's see her be lowered from the ceiling on a
thin, red string.
NBC SERIES CANCELED AFTER THREE DAYS
Now You're Cookin' With Gasbags! - NBC planned to run the new reality series
"Celebrity Cooking Showdown" every night this week, but it was yanked after
three days of posting some of the lowest network ratings in history. Opposite
"American Idol," it pulled a Neilsen rating of 1.1. The final two episodes
won't even be burned off on cable but will be made available for viewing online
* The problem was, they defined "celebrity" as loosely as they did "cooking."
* The "celebrities" on that show were such Z-listers, they actually agreed
to work for food.
* If you're one of the 1.1 percent of Americans who had nothing better to do
than watch Tom Arnold make tuna casserole, perhaps you might want to consider
* They're retooling the show...When it comes back, the celebrities will be
cooking on ice skates.
* NBC hoped it would be the next "Deal or No Deal," but to viewers, it was
just "No Deal!"