Monday

FILM CLIPS:

Here's a zipped .mpg of Julia Stiles's kinda sorta topless scene in Edmond.  Edmond is a David Mamet play adapted into a screenplay by Mamet himself. IMDb listing. It was made with a ten million dollar budget, features an excellent cast, and it is currently playing in a theater near you - provided you live next to one of the whopping two theaters in the USA where it is showing!

Here are three more frames from the clip (others in yesterday's edition)


 

Here's a zipped .avi of pretty Sarah Alexander (of "Coupling") appearing stark naked in some British comedy show.

 


 

This zipped .avi is Malin Ackerman ("Harold and Kumar") making nice-nice with Emmanuelle Chriqui on an episode of Entourage, s3e6.

 

 

 

The Royal Tenenbaums

I got the urge to watch the Royal Tenenbaums again last night when I spotted it on the shelf. Little did I know that the special features include some full-frontal nudity! I don't know who this actress is, but she played "Cinnamon" in a deleted scene.

As for the movie ... well, it's a terrific movie, but it's eccentric and special and may or may not be your cup of tea.

If you were a lit major at any time, or just love literature, you are probably aware that the 20th century legend J.D. Salinger wrote more than just Catcher in the Rye. I sort of stumbled upon his other writing because, like just about everyone in my generation, I read Catcher in the Rye and related to it. I then resolved to read everything else Salinger had ever written.

It wasn't that good a decision.

Most of what he wrote was about a dysfunctional family of Jewish/Irish urban geniuses, the Glasses, whose lives bear no resemblance to anything on the planet earth. These stories are contrived and insubstantial twaddle. The humor is basically New Yorker Magazine insider humor, the kind of stuff that makes pink-clad girls named Muffy and stout good fellows named Biff twitter politely in recognition of finely tuned irony. Not only did I find Salinger's other works disappointing, but it has always been a complete mystery to me that the author of this bullshit could have written Catcher in the Rye. Salinger took the material much too seriously, which made it all just too precious, but there was a core of good material there if anyone had taken the time to see the real potential for humor in a family of child geniuses grown into neurotic, eccentric, and unsatisfied adults. That's essentially what Wes Anderson has done with the Royal Tenenbaums, his own family of Jewish/Irish prodigies.

This film was created by people with tremendous talent - talent at a level not at all short of genius. It is one of the most aesthetically consistent films I've ever seen. The set and costume designs are outstanding, especially in the attention to the tiny details of the Tenenbaum's lives. The photography is lush, and the DVD transfer may be the best I've ever seen. The script can be witty, sad, clever, and even laugh-out-loud funny. There's only one thing about the film which may scare you away. It is a good comedy, but it may not be your kind of comedy. Ask yourself how much time you would like to spend with neurotic, self-obsessed rich geniuses, even when they are being ridiculed? Do you like the characters of P.G. Wodehouse or Edward Gorey, or Salinger's Glass family? Can you relate to John Irving's novels or the cartoons in The New Yorker? If so, the humor here will be right up your alley - you'll see refined, soft-spoken, well-educated, dysfunctional intellectuals exchanging lifeless, passionless, clever words masked in gentle tones, but hiding condescension, contempt, and altogether too much self-loathing. Obviously, some people found the film impossible to relate to. Other types of filmgoers adored the film, and just couldn't get enough of these characters. The split of opinions was reflected in the scores from the major print reviewers in the UK, who assigned every score from 10/10 to 4/10. I can see why some critics were unenthusiastic. I found most members of the Tenenbaum circle, like Salinger's Glass family, to be interesting companions for a time because of their eccentricity, but I also found them tiresome before they had taken their leave.

Except for ol' Royal Tenenbaum himself, the family patriarch. I never got tired of him, or of Gene Hackman's brilliant portrayal.

The Royal character is so engaging that it won me over into this film's camp and got me through the slow parts. Royal is really nothing more than a refined slacker and scoundrel. He can't even remember the last time he told the truth, and he lies so much that even he doesn't always know which of his pretenses contain a germ of truth. Tossed out by his wife for infidelities and his general lack of integrity, he lives in a hotel room for many years, totally ignoring his family until he hears that his wife wants to divorce and remarry. He then concocts a series of preposterous schemes to get back into his family's good graces, including hiring his hotel's bellhop to impersonate a doctor in order to certify a phony cancer diagnosis. His children, knowing him well enough, are suspicious of his sincerity, especially given that his case of stomach cancer (six weeks to live) is accompanied by his inexplicable ability to wolf down three double cheeseburgers with the works.

The film is basically about Royal's bumbling attempts to make up for all the years of neglecting his family. Given his obvious lies and his total lack of social skills, virtually every one of his schemes backfires, and therein lies the humor. And yet he does attain some measure of success. His eventual growth as a person is bittersweet, and it is limited, but he does make progress, and he tries so hard that we find ourselves rooting for him even though we know him to be a complete lowlife. After Royal confesses that everyone thinks he's an asshole, his wife's suitor says "I never thought you were an asshole, just a callous sonofabitch." Royal responds with a sincere thank you! That's about as close as anyone has ever come to saying something nice about him.

It's that kind of film.

 

 

 

 

 

OTHER CRAP:

The trailer from The Piano Tuner of Earthquakes
  • "The Piano Tuner of Earthquakes is the breathtakingly beautiful and long-awaited second feature from the Brothers Quay. On the eve of her wedding, the beautiful opera singer Malvina is mysteriously killed and abducted by a malevolent Dr. Droz. Felisberto, an innocent piano tuner, is summoned to Droz's secluded villa to service his strange musical automatons. Little by little Felisberto learns of the doctor's plans to stage a 'diabolical opera' and of Malvina's fate. He secretly conspires to rescue her, only to become trapped himself in the web of Droz's perverse universe..."

Clerks 2, as reviewed by The Filthy Critic
  • "I can smell shit, and Clerks 2 stinks."

"BUSH ATTEMPTS TO GIVE KIM JONG-IL FULL-BODY MASSAGE" ... North Korean Madman Recoils in Horror

"Caution: retards in area"

"Floyd Landis won the Tour de France on Sunday, keeping cycling's most prestigious title in American hands for the eighth straight year."

"Shyamalan does offer us a few glimpses of the film's monster, which appears to be a grass-covered hound dog. (Note to Shyamalan: Grass isn't scary.)"

Wired News: Classic Comic Book Covers of the forties and fifties

Impressive hi-res picture of the Martian surface

An amateurish PG-rated promo for Stallone's porn movie, Party at Kitty and Stud's!

Elmer and Bertha at a John Holmes movie.

Topher Grace as Venom in Spider-Man 3

With all due respect to a good friend of mine, the late Dale Davis, this may be the greatest surfing footage ever filmed.

Weekend Box Office Results for July 21-23, 2006
  • The overall box office was solid (11% above last year), but its strength lay in a fine field of holdovers, and not in the new films. Every new release performed below expectations, while every holdover beat its prediction.
  • Lady in the Water was predicted to float above the others, but sank to third
  • The raunchy Clerks 2 had finished a promising fourth on Friday, but sank to seventh or eighth on family-friendly Sunday (It is in a virtual tie with Superman for 7th. Either one may end up in the spot when the estimates are replaced by actuals.)
  • Neither of this week's live action comedies could unseat either of last week's. (You Me and Dupree and Little Man finished above Clerks and Super Ex-Girlfriend.)
  • Pirates stole some more records. It became the first film ever to reach $300m in 16 days, and it had the third-highest "third weekend" of all time, behind Spider-Man 1 and Shrek 2.
  • In retrospect, the decision to keep Super Ex-Girlfriend away from critics was the wrong one. It got decent reviews, even some very good ones, which might have helped a box office substantially below expectations.


Tiger wins third British Open, 11th career major
  • Tiger is merely 30 years old , yet Nicklaus is the only man to win more majors.

International Atom Registry Allows Customers To Name Atom After Loved One (The Onion)

Cheney Vs Putin

"The Genuine Sanrio Hello Kitty Vibrator represents Japanese Pop Culture at its Best!"

NBC is resurrecting 'Nobody's Watching,' the quirky 2005 WB comedy pilot, because it found new life on YouTube!

Global Warming is melting Al Gore into liquid form
  • "Now that Gore is melting, some political analysts say he will run more effectively than he did as a solid."

The Kim Jong Il Show, with special guest Tom Cruise

 

Movie Reviews:

Yellow asterisk: funny (maybe). White asterisk: expanded format. Blue asterisk: not mine. No asterisk: it probably sucks.

 

Welcome Says the Angel (1996)

This is a "drugs suck" movie from Zero Pictures, a studio which got its name from its typical budget, which always fits easily within 4 digits. The story is basically about a guy's attempt to get the girl he just met off heroin.

That's about all you need to know. For those more curious, complete spoilers follow:

Joshua (Jon Jacobs) is seen asleep on the side of the highway as the film opens. His motorcycle is laying on its side. He hitches into Hollywood and lands in a seedy bar. There, he meets bartender Charlie (Leroy Jones), who will figure again in the story, gets falling down drunk, and goes home with Anna (Aysha Hauer). She lets him sleep in her bed with her, but not touch her. The "apartment" is an old commercial building with one room, and her bed is inside a car chassis. He wakes up in the morning chained to the bed, where he is kept captive while she leaves, returns with food, shoots up on heroin more than once, and has sex with him. She finally releases him, expecting him to leave. He does, then returns. Seems he is taken with her. She awakes the next morning chained to the bed with her stash missing. We get to watch her withdrawal in near real time.

Once she is over the withdrawal, she decides to give straight a chance. But, Remember Charlie? Yup, he is the pusher, and, in what I saw as the most real plot point in what was a pretty honest plot to begin with, he convinces her to sample his latest score of China White. Joshua comes home to find her near death but manages to revive her. They film ends with an exhausted Joshua embracing her.

End Spoilers

The film is not rated high at IMDb - only 2.5. Is that fair? Who knows? They put every penny of their $2,000 budget on the screen, and all of the characters were believable. The story was also completely believable. On the other hand, the photography was grainy, it was a character piece about essentially unpleasant characters doing unpleasant things, and I am not fond of "drugs suck" films no matter how good they are. I do applaud Zero Pictures for creating a place where would-be film makers can realize their visions without any money, and I will continue to see their films.

Objectively, this is a D-, but it may be of interest to anyone interested in the "drugs suck" genre, or in zero budget film making.

 

During the course of the film, Aysha Hauer shows all of her body parts. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elke Sommer in Deadlier than the Male. No nudity but, hey, it's Elke.
Eva Herman appearing on Wer hat's gesehen (no nudity)
Katja Bienert in Fabian (1979). Nice!
Laura Morante in Dov' mio figlio?

 

 

 

 

 

A Public Service Announcement.

I usually write these things to amuse ever so slightly and ever so briefly.  But today's blather is different.  I am here to warn my fellow readers of the Fun House.  Run away.  Run away.  Run the fuck away. 

When should you run away, you ask.  Whenever you see the cover for a movie entitled H. G. Wells's War of the Worlds (2005).  Everyone knows that Gilbert and Sullivan wrote a competing version of WOTW, so keeping these things straight is important.  This version, which followed a masterly bit of storytelling from the 50's, and came out the same year as the blockbuster version from Spielberg, is the single worst movie I have ever watched.  Ever.  Let's put that in some context, shall we?  Last movie I reviewed was Rent-A-Girl.  And not too long ago I did this thing called Moonshine Love.  Ah, the days of Moonshine Love.  I wish I could say I had watched Moonshine Love last night for one good reason -- then I would not have watched H. G. Wells' War of the Worlds.  I would consider that a vast improvement in my life.


Perhaps it would be best to start by comparing this wretched hunk of donkey shit to the Spielberg movie.  We all know how that one, with Mr. Katie Holmes in the lead, started off right nice.  'Twas almost an hour's worth of serious entertainment.  Things blew up real good, a host of actors portrayed a people in panic; and Spielberg did a great job of pushing the pace to get across the impending doom of individuals and, in the end, of humankind.  Righteous good stuff. But then the former Mr. Nicole Kidman gets into a basement with Tim Robbins and the two of them act the living fuck out of the scene and the whole shebang turns its toes to the sky and dies.  What follows is garbage...the worst of storytelling.  Oh well, it was a good first hour.

And this version?  The first minute is serious entertainment, with the lovely Tinarie Van Wyk-Loost stepping out of a shower and drying off, all the while talking with C. Thomas Howell (that's right...you read that correctly....C. Thomas Howell).  All that is worth watching in this movie is Tinarie Van Wyk-Loost, who looks more than a bit like Angelina Jolie, topless and smiling. Nothing following this scene is worth a nanosecond of your time.  From the time her towel goes around her bod and all her charms get covered, the movie degenerates into the single most atrocious, incompetent, boring piece of movie-making in the history of the universe and other things.  It is claustrophobic, with the camera showing us the edge of destruction.  So often that camera stays right smack on the face of the noted thespian, C Thomas Howell, as he gazes upon horror rather than show us the damn horror.  And when it finally swings 'round to reveal what he has seen, the view is fleeting.  Why?  Because the jackasses who made this thing spent 11 cents on special effects.  The effects are horrible. They are wretched.  They are inane.  Just like the people assigned to do them.  Were CT an actor in any sense of the word, all this might have been less obnoxious ... this tactic of having him portray horror with his face.  Oh, I agree that aged face is a horrible sight, almost as appalling as seeing him in blackface a couple decades ago.  But the tactic of living out the horror in the lines of another's face does not work.  Not one little bit.

The makers of this movie decided to go Mel Gibson on us.  They have turned the original's light-handed approach to the wisdom of the Almighty into a heavy angst-ridden struggle by an Australian preacher as he tries to make sense of aliens killing His people.  You get minute after minute of bathos and faux piety and the kind of internal and eternal struggle that is covered nicely in a class of 5th-grade Sunday schoolers.  This stuff is so god-awful the Mrs. and I howled in pain as one scene after another plumbed the same depths with an intellect shorter than the former Mr. Mimi Rogers.  We wore out the frickin' FF button.  I am sending the producers of this movie a bill for its replacement.

I could go on.  The silly-ass bastards hired Gary Busey's son to play the quintessential Gary Busey role of a crazed military commander.  All the boy had to do was watch one or two of his dad's later efforts and then imitate him as best he could...which turned out to be not so good.  They also hired the lovely Tinarie to play Howell's wife and the mother of their 10-yr-old son.  Tinarie is 26 years old right now.  She was at most 24 when the movie was filmed.  And she looks younger.  That would have made her 14 when the kid was supposed to be born.  Fourteen... as in years old.... as in the age of Jerry Lee Lewis's cousin when he married her. All that suggests the producer needed to read more carefully.  Tinarie is from South Africa, not South Carolina.

Perhaps all that is wrong with this making of War of the Worlds can be summed up in one scene.  CT and the Aussie preacher are making their way through the Virginia countryside to Washington DC.  CT has to get there to see if his child-bride and his son (played by his real-life son) are still alive.  But are they hauling ass, moving with any alacrity, adopting a pace that befits their mission?  No way, dude.  They are walking at a pace that a couple of octogenarians who have discovered true love in their last years might achieve on a particularly bad, arthritic day.  And then, for no reason we could see, they stop.  Dead stop, no movement, right there in the middle of things. 

Would only the movie had done likewise. 

 

Tinarie Van Wyk-Loost. Movie clip (zipped .avi)
 

 

 

 

 

Oz's film clips are in yesterday's edition, in the top (Scoopy) section.

Snapshot

Sigrid Thornton is a well-known actress in Australia. Snapshot (1979) was one of her earliest movies and she is shown topless as she goes for a paddle in the local bay.


Sheba, Baby

Sheba, Baby (1975) is disappointing from a nudity point of view.

All we have is a lot of cleavage from Pam Grier

and some unknowns.


Return to Paradise

We see side nudity from Anne Heche

and Is Issayira

in Return to Paradise (1998).


Aunt Agatha's Apartment

There's no visible nudity in Aunt Agatha's Apartment aka Rent Control (2002).

We see some nice cleavage from Carmen Electra

and we see a topless Melissa Joan Hart from behind.


The Long Riders

Pamela Reed

and some unknowns

are all seen topless in The Long Riders (1980).


Constantine

They worked hard to make sure nothing is shown by Rachel Weisz in Constantine (2005).


Alexander

Rosario Dawson is completely naked in Alexander (2004)

and there are some minor pokies by Angelina Jolie.


Eye for an Eye

No nudity in Eye for an Eye (1996).

Sally Field

Wanda Acuna

and Charlayne Woodard

are shown in various stages of undress.


Greedy

Again, no nudity but we see some sexy caps of Olivia D'Abo

and Nancy Travis

 in Greedy (1994).


Dirty Dancing

Jennifer Beals looks good in Dirty Dancing (1987), with some nice pokies and other sexy scenes.



 

 

 

 

Room 6 (2006)

I'll fly in the face of conventional wisdom here, because most of the critics and viewers hated this 2006 supernatural thriller, while I liked it a lot.

Amy is a teacher who is terrified of hospitals, because of something that happened to her as a child. Even now, it's not unusual for her to have horrific nightmares about hospitals. When she and finance Nick are involved in a traffic accident, and he is badly injured and taken away by ambulance, she must face her worst fear, by following him to the hospital. One slight complication: she wasn't told the name of the hospital he was taken to.

Amy is unable to locate Nick in any local hospital. She is aided by the driver of the other car, who is himself trying to locate his sister taken to the same unknown hospital. Finally, the driver, who is an ex-hospital orderly, finds out that they were taken to St. Rosemary's. That is also a problem, since St. Rosemary's closed in the 1920's amid rumors of Satanic rituals being performed by the staff on patients. When Amy and her new friend finally do locate St. Rosemary's, she gets far more than she bargained for.

The best part of this movie is the ending. While very sad, it explains everything, and the whole movie suddenly becomes clear. It's quite a ride, and I enjoyed it.

Christine Taylor Various

 

 

 

 

The Women of "Busty Coeds"

August Avila

Nicole Oring

Nicole Oring and August Avila together

Summer Fields