So, I'm sitting in the movies today, watching the coming attractions when I see the cutest friggin' thing I've ever seen in my life. Seriously. As in, "I squeaked so loud people were probably wondering just how old I was" cute.

Wall*E, Pixar's newest creation, is going to be solid GOLD. I guarantee it.

I really do want one.

The Trailers


The Stupid is Catching (Or "Ouija Boards")

It's become my little sister's newest obsession. I have to hear about it whenever I pick her up from her friend's house. Tonight, in fact, she and her friends talked to a bad spirit who hated their friend, who was absent from the get-together, and knew the girl's mother.

I know. My little sister's 17, by the way. One of the most popular kids in her school.

The standards must've been lowered since I left high school.

Ouija has really made me see that the human race will seriously resort to anything in order to obtain the unobtainable. Talking to the dead is something that we've been trying to do as a society since the first person died and the second person got kind of lonely and hoped they could still carry on a conversation, even though the first person had just been killed to shit by a Sabertooth tiger.

Today, it's a pop culture phenomenon. My sister would stop at nothing until she could have this "supernatural instrument", which naturally led to me driving my ass to the Toys 'R' Us nearest to my college in order to get one. Thank you, Parker Brothers. You bastards.

Listen up, kiddies, because Auntie R.C. is only going to break this down for you once:

1. If the dead really wanted to be talked to, believe you me, they would find a way to "contact" you. Like throwing shit around your house. I don't know, I just watched An American Haunting the other day.

2. If a Ouija board was truly an instrument to be used in getting in touch with the great beyond, it wouldn't be made accessible to the public. Or sold in a Toys 'R' Us.

3. If a ghost was going to use that little needle thing to point to letters, your hands wouldn't be anywhere near it.

4. A "bad" spirit wouldn't tell you it was so, unless he/she was a fucking nimrod in life. Wouldn't a bad spirit thrive on deception and mayhem and what have you? Only an idiot would tell you, up front, that it's probably not the best candidate as far as honesty goes.

5. A Ouija board wouldn't cost $24.99 (see #2)

It's fun for a party, but don't tell me all about contacting some douche bag who called your friend the C-word, a word I hate, and expect me to take you seriously. If it was real, a legit practice, I'd be contacting Dylan Thomas to ask if the cirrhosis was worth it.



I love a good satire, don't you? Especially when it comes in the form of a show so smart, so witty, and so reminiscent of the old school Hanna-Barbara shows.

From the genius minds of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim comes The Venture Bros., an animated series about Doctor Venture, a failed scientist fumbling in the footsteps of his genius father, Venture's two idiot sons, Dean and Hank, and their bodyguard, a blood-thirsty government agent named Brock Sampson.

This show is GOLD.

It's always the same formula: good guys + bad guy + conflict = showdown = GOOD GUYS WIN = Cheesy ending dialog + Laughter

Christ, it's like doing FOIL in Algebra.

The Venture Bros. takes this formula and turns it upside down, bringing with it villains that have real problems, razor wit and snark, and a dysfunctional family just trying to get along. The formula is an updated one, packed with plenty of laughs (real ones) and hysterically tragic characters that you can't help but love -- even the villains.

When you're not cracking up over Brock Sampson (voiced by Patrick Warburton)'s complete disregard for human life, or the poor, under-appreciated H.E.L.P.eR robot, or sympathizing with the Monarch's henchmen (who have personalities and bits of back story), you're pitying/laughing with the Venture Brothers and their fumbling attempts to be heroes and please their father, whom is never happy.

The show's animation is fantastic, a hip update of the old ways, and is aided by the old school jazz score (but with a 21st century twist).

The Venture Bros. is a triumph, and I can't wait for Season 3 to come out. Seasons 1 and 2 are available for purchase and I highly recommend them to anyone in need of some quality entertainment.


SPOTLIGHT! And it's on.... Cate Blanchett!

This was a tough one, since I was going to capitulate and do an article on Emma Thompson, my favorite actress in the entire world. But that would have been totally predictable.

Instead, I'm going to focus on the woman who's a very, very close second: Cate Blanchett.

Truth be told, I'm not entirely sure when I first saw Ms. Blanchett, but I can certainly name a plethora of movies she's been in and tell you how much I love them. Cate has an old Hollywood quality to her, the classic beauty she possesses and the confidant yet sensual way she portrays her characters. Never once have I ever been disappointed in her performance in any movie. She has that innate talent that is instilled in kids from the UK since birth. (See: Sean Biggerstaff's Spotlight Segment)

Although the fact that she's Australian shouldn't throw you any.

I remember watching Elizabeth I and thinking to myself, "Wow. There are no words to describe this woman; they haven't been written yet." Not one moment went by that I didn't 110% believe that she was Elizabeth I, not some actress portraying her. She was cool (like 'ice', not 'awesome'), she was genuine, and she was almost ethereal in her beautiful gowns and her commanding voice. Whenever I read Elizabeth I's Speech to the Troops at Tilbury, I hear Cate's voice resounding through my mind. In fact, I read it in class and tried to inflict Ms. Blanchett's authority into it -- I can tell you right now, even though I was praised for my handling of the piece, I didn't even come close.

Cate has the Midas Touch, without the 'unable to hug or eat anything' thing. Everything she touches is gold. Whether it's playing the impossible part of an Elvin queen (Galadriel from The Lord of the Rings movies), or a harried teacher having an affair with a student (her Oscar-winning role as Sheba Hart from Notes on a Scandal), or even 3-minute cameos in comedies (Jeannie, Nicholas Angel's ex, uncredited in Hot Fuzz), she commands the screen with such aplomb and grace, it's like reading The Faerie Queene. She's Gloriana (which is an interesting coincidence, since Spenser wrote The Faerie Queene in tribute to Elizabeth I, a role played twice by Cate).

I have yet to see The Good German and I'm dying to see I'm Not There, the biography of Bob Dylan, a movie in which Cate's portrayal of Dylan stole the show. Critic Anthony Curtis praised her performance in "The Chronicle of Higher Education" : He especially praised Cate Blanchett. "[H]er performance is a wonder, and not simply because, as Jude Quinn, she inhabits the twitchy, amphetamine-fired Dylan of 1965-66 with unnerving accuracy. Casting a woman in this role reveals a dimension to the acerbic Dylan of this era that has rarely been noted. Even as she perfectly mimics every jitter, sneer, and caustic put-down, Blanchett's translucent skin, delicate fingers, slight build, and pleading eyes all suggest the previously invisible vulnerability and fear that fueled Dylan's lacerating anger. It's hard to imagine that any male actor, or any less-gifted female actor for that matter, could have lent such rich texture to the role."

That's right. Cate Blanchett, in short, is amazing, and one day I can only hope to meet her. Or, in the extreme of my fantasies, write a role fitting enough for her.

Here's to you, Cate. Never stop making movies. NEVER. Show all these "up and coming" wannabes who they're dealing with.


Holy Preggers, Batman!

Now that finals are over, I have an entire month to post as much as I goddamn well please! Aren't you all glad? I thought so.

This weekend will hold much for me in the way of cinema. There's Sweeney Todd, Tim Burton's adaptation of the play to the big-screen, which is bringing in some fantastic praise from critics (who I don't tend to listen to as much anymore ever since they kinda panned The 5th Element, so fuck 'em), Juno, with my girl Ellen Page, National Treasure 2, which I want to see only because I saw and enjoyed the first one, and maybe Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story.

And despite Gerard Butler being in it, forget P.S., I Love You. There's just something about Hilary Swank that makes me want to take a page out of Eddie Izzard's book and go put babies on spikes.

However, as excited as I am for this sudden burst of cinematic goodness, these movies aren't what's getting everyone all up in arms. How sad is it when some 16-year old crazie goes and gets herself preggo by some kid who looks like he's lived in California all his life, rocking the ganj?

Yes, I'm of course talking about Miss Britney 2.0 Jamie Lynn Spears.

What is with the Spears family? Do they have a genetic predisposition toward the Stupid gene? I don't get why another girl with everything she could ever want -- a highly-rated show, a big fan following, and a bright future -- would just throw it all away for some unsafe sex. At 16.

As my friend Ken says, it boggles the fucking mind.

I really hope Jamie Lynn wakes up one morning, takes a look at her swollen belly, and realizes that she may have ruined the lives of hundreds of young girls who look up to her. The interview she gave to OK! Magazine gives off the impression that it's okay to get pregnant so young, as long as you're up front about it to your parents and the father of the child. Um, wrong message to send to impressionable, young girls. Every time I see a picture of her with a big grin, I want to shake her and ask her if it's sunk in yet just what lies ahead of her.

/end rant

Anyway, kids, listen to your Auntie R.C. and remember: USE A CONDOM. TWO, IF YOU MUST. AND THE PILL. I don't care if your minister says it's against the law of God; God ain't the one building more pews for your spawn to sit in.

Movie reviews this weekend, as well as a new Spotlight article.

"Protection is for pansies!"




Everyone knows the premise of the film: Robert Neville is a brilliant scientist, but even he could not contain the terrible virus that was unstoppable, incurable, and man-made. Somehow immune, Neville is now the last human survivor in what is left of New York City and maybe the world. But he is not alone. Mutant victims of the plague -- The Infected -- lurk in the shadows... watching Neville's every move... waiting for him to make a fatal mistake. Perhaps mankind's last, best hope, Neville is driven by only one remaining mission: to find a way to reverse the effects of the virus using his own immune blood. But he knows he is outnumbered... and quickly running out of time. (Written by Warner Bros. Pictures)

The film is an adaptation of Richard Matheson's 1954 novel of the same name, and the premise rang similarly: Neville is the only survivor of an apocalypse caused by a pandemic of bacteria, the symptoms of which are very similar to vampirism.

I had high hopes for this film, and it did have its good points. The special effects that were used to make New York look post-apocalyptic were phenomenal. Will Smith did an outstanding job as Neville, the last person on earth, and carried the film by himself with great aplomb. And the German Shepherd that played his dog, Sam, should have its own category in the Golden Globes: Best Animal in a Supporting Role.

However, the rest of the film was terrible. It was improbable, it quickly became formulaic at the arrival of two new, unfleshed characters (one which was annoying and the other completely useless), the zombies were something out of a bad video game, and the film never delved into the new psychology of the zombies, which weren't brainless cannibals, but organized -- they even had a leader! Nothing was said on them, even with the one Neville was studying.

The film's ending was disappointing, as were the final words of the voice-over. I walked out once again disenchanted with the movie industry, as well as a screenwriter's ability to transition a story line from novel to film.

My recommendation would be to save your $10 and wait until it comes out to video.

I give I AM LEGEND a 2 out of 5.

On another note, the film came with the trailer for The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. Hell-oh, Ben Barnes! ♥


Girl Talk: not just for females anymore! (Music)

I was getting made up for a photo shoot when my friend, the photographer, asked if we could listen to some music. At my hearty consent, he brought iTunes up and began playing a series of remixed songs that were all set to an incredibly catchy beat. Amazed, I listened carefully and was able to pick out at least 10 songs I knew out of each.

Girl Talk is Pittsburgh mash-up musician Gregg Gillis. He specializes in sample-based remixes, in which he uses at least a dozen elements from different songs to create a "new" song. Seriously. I'll sit there and be like, "THAT'S GENESIS! OMG THAT'S GWEN! AND THAT'S KANSAS! AND THAT'S THE PETSHOP BOYS!"

He plays many shows in clubs, and I almost got to go to one but couldn't due to the FLU. Stupid virus, ruining my life.

Night Ripper is his most recent album, 16 tracks, all amalgamations of rap, pop, old school rock, and grunge. They're amazingly catchy and very fun to work out to. When I was stuck in the Overlook Hotel, I'd listen to them every day on the treadmill. It's a fun album and never gets old, especially when you're constantly discovering the songs in the mixes.

I highly recommend Girl Talk to anyone looking for something bouncy to listen to when exercising, running, or on the highway and in need of something fun.


The Golden Compass: The Review

So, after my mother took me out to dinner I took myself to the nearest Showcase Cinemas and saw the 7:30 showing of The Golden Compass. Going in, I wasn't sure what to expect, having not read the book (I wanted to wait to read it, that way I wouldn't be disappointed).

The movie was okay for the most part. The special effects were decent, but it was the acting that really shined. You know how in some movies, it's the cinematography or the script? This time, it was the acting.

For the six and a half minutes that he was on-screen, Daniel Craig rocked. He commanded everyone's attention, even when he wasn't yelling or giving the Council the 007 Glare. Nicole Kidman came to life for once and put in a stellar performance as Marisa Coulter, the head of the Magisterium, who was simultaneously sweet and poisonous... and had a real douche bag of a monkey for a daemon, or animal spirit. Sam Elliot was a cowboy... literally. He was SO good, what with his drawl and his jack rabbit daemon named Hester and his very shiny gun and his greasy hair and Gregory Peck eyebrow-mustache. Ian McKellen was BOMB as Iorek Byrnison, the armored bear, with his strong voice. Every time he got angry, or spoke, I was like, "bitch is gonna die."

EVA GREEN. I want to be you when I grow up. Why are you so pretty and so talented and pretty?

And last but not least, Dakota Blue Richards. She was fantastic as Lyra Belacqua, the protagonist. This is her breakout role and I do think that after this trilogy is done we shall be seeing more of her. I hope we do. She was the right amount of petulant and sarcastic and brave, never afraid to take charge of a scene, even among veteran actors. She was comfortable and genuine, and reminded me a little of myself when I was younger. You know, running through fields and talking to animals and hanging out with old men and gypsies on dirigibles.

However, as fun and fantastic as the acting was, the movie was terribly rushed. I do know some about author Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials series, and even without reading the three books I could tell that his characters lost their nuances and the plot was simplified in order to appease a two-hour limit, which is a shame, because I would have loved to have learned more about the characters and the world. A lot of people complained that it was hard to keep up and that they didn't understand some of it. Understandable. Some things definitely got lost in translation while filming this.

But for an adaptation, it could have been worse. It was okay, although not as well thought out as the Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings films.

Go see it, though, if you've got 2 hours to spare and want to see two polar bears kick the ever-loving shit out of each other. And while you're there, kick a Catholic. They're protesting kids going to see this movie because they're afraid the kids will read the books and become atheists. That's right, Catholics, let's not allow our children to read. Have them turn on The Real World, instead.

I give The Golden Compass a 2.5 out of 5.

Bitch is crazy!


Go see the Atheist movie! It opened today!


Tin Man was... kinda like lead.

Well, I watched the 2-hour premiere of SciFi's new miniseries, Tin Man, which is a darker spin on Frank L. Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

The premise was interesting: Tomboyish D.G., played by Zooey Deschanel (whom I love), gets whisked into the O.Z. (Outer Zone), where evil sorceress Azkadellia (Kathleen Robertson) is searching for the Emerald and will use whatever means to get it. D.G. is accompanied by Glitch, the former advisor to the former queen whose brain was stolen, Raw, a humanoid lion who is empathetic as well as clairvoyant, and Cain, a former "tin man" or police officer whose family was taken from him.

Unfortunately, the premise, save for performances by Alan Cumming as Glitch, was really the only shining point of the program. The special effects were mediocre at best, and the script made me want to gouge my eyes out with a spork.

It makes me sad that this is kind of meh. I love Zooey, and I think she's a fantastic actress. The role of D.G. would have been perfect for her if only the script had been better.

Azkadellia is horribly cliché; she's every wicked sorceress you've ever seen, and aside from being able to suck the life out of people she's not all that terrifying. She really can't walk in the boots she's wearing, either.

I'm going to try and stick with it, because maybe it'll pick up, but I was so unimpressed that this might be finished for me.

Good try, though, SciFi. Maybe next time you'll get a better screenplay.



SciFi's original new series Tin Man premieres tonight at 9pm.

I can't wait.

Be sure to watch it! I'll post thoughts about it tomorrow!


To those in the northern part of the country....

... I write this letter on your behalf.

Dear God,

It's 19 degrees.

Cut the shit.

Freezing/possibly dying of hypothermia,



It's the most horrible time of the year.

As sure as the sun will rise and as sure as someone's going to rehab, the end of this semester is drawing nigh!

A good portion of this blog's readers (count: 3) are college students, or at least have friends/relatives that are, and they're probably beginning to stress. There are finals to study for, all-nighters, big papers to write. Red Bull's stock usually sky-rockets around this time.

However, every student can easily be distracted, as they are vulnerable and their attention spans drop to that of a sock.

Here are some ways to survive the next two weeks:

1. Make a list. Not like your Santa lists, unless swearing gets you going. List all the things you need to get done, ranging them from most important/time-consuming to least. And check off the things you do finish.

2. Strategize: Plan so that one subject doesn't take time away from another. If you have two papers to write before the end and one is due before another, don't invest ALL your time into the first one. Be sure to outline the second one and keep thinking about it.

3. For the love of all things good in this world (cake, Sean Biggerstaff, books by Terry Pratchett), get the fuck off of Facebook. Even the most well-meaning student can sit down with every intention of writing a paper and instead find themselves on Facebook with five other windows open, not entirely sure how it happened. Do yourself a favor: stay off of Facebook, stay off of AIM (or at least put up an away message that says you can only be bothered if someone's bleeding out their eyes or if the meadow is on fire), and don't text anybody. This is homework time.

4. Start early. The earlier start you get, the more time you'll have to laugh at everyone else for slacking. And believe me, there's no other ego-boost like it.

5. Metabolize! Eat snacks while you work to keep your energy up. Celery, carrots, cookie dough (or, well, don't)... Don't eat anything too sugary or you'll crash and find yourself watching a marathon of Project Runway. Not that I know from experience.

6. Don't be afraid to ask teachers or tutors for help. Too brain-dead to think of your own ideas? Need a kick in the right direction? That's what they're there for! And they usually get paid; teachers and tutors like to see this kind of proactive shit.

7. Take short breaks. NOW you can hit Facebook or Youtube, but limit your time to about 10 minutes or less. Don't get caught up adding stupid applications so you can make Christmas trees or commenting on EVERY picture someone tagged you in. Not only are you procrastinating, but you're being obnoxious.

8. Be proud of yourself! If you've managed to accomplish one of these things, then there's no stopping you! ... Unless, you know, you get hit by a mack truck or something, but why the hell would you be playing on the highway in the first place?

And remember! R.C. loves you. Sorta.


Um. Holy Cow.

The Center for Marital and Sexual Studies in Long Beach, CA reported one anonymous woman volunteer as having 134 orgasms in the span of an hour.

I don't know whether to be jealous or slap on a chastity belt for all eternity.


The newest segment! Every week on Thursday I will post a song that I think you ought to be aware of. It will be a different genre, band, era, whatever every time -- or at least most of the time. Click the song title, download, and enjoy!

This week's song is Broken Social Scene's powerful Lover's Spit.


**If you download, I want to know your thoughts. So don't click if you don't want to share.**

I first heard this song in a (favorite) Queer as Folk episode and fell in love. Every time I listen to this, I feel an odd combination of depression, envy, and buoyancy.



Denzel Washington is the MAN.

I'll admit, I got this in an email sent to me by my mother (who rocks, btw, and you're all super jealous because she isn't your mother), and I was so moved by it that I needed to post it:

Don't know whether you heard about this

but Denzel Washington and his family visited

the troops at Brook Army Medical Center , in

San Antonio , Texas (BAMC) the other day. This

is where soldiers who have been evacuated from

Germany come to be hospitalized in the United

States, especially burn victims. There are some

buildings there called Fisher Houses. The Fisher

House is a Hotel where soldiers' families can stay,

for little or no charge, while their soldier is staying

in the Hospital. BAMC has quite a few of these houses

on base, but as you can imagine, they are almost filled

most of the time.

While Denzel Washington was visiting BAMC, they gave

him a tour of one of the Fisher Houses. He asked how

much one of them would cost to build. He took his check

book out and wrote a check for the full amount right there

on the spot. The soldiers overseas were amazed to hear

this story and want to get the word out to the American

public, because it warmed their hearts to hear it.

So, the email goes on to asking why A-holes like Madonna, Sean Penn, and that bad Baldwin father continue to make the front page of every paper with their anti-everything trash, but Denzel's charity only makes page 3 of some no-name paper in San Antonio.

Why is that?

Because the American Media sucks, that's why. But we knew that.

Anyway, the point of this was to make you guys aware that not only is Denzel a great actor, but he's a great guy, too.

NEW NAME, NEW.... actually, no, that's about it.

I've changed the name of this blog to "Because Your Life Isn't Interesting". Because it's not.


Something about a watch and talking animals...?

Catholic groups are boycotting Newline Cinema's The Golden Compass, because it supposedly promotes Atheism.

Um, no offense to the Catholics, but shut up, grab some popcorn, and enjoy a movie with Daniel Craig, Sam Elliot, and Ian McKellen as a bear.

Is it December 7th yet? Because I am crawling the walls in anticipation.

Technorati Profile

"Foiled" (2006), a review of Blue October's most recent CD

While you're all working hard on making your wreath balls and writing your X-mas lists, I'm going to tell you all about a band called Blue October.

When my dorm had burned down and I was trapped in the Overlook Hotel, my roommate and I were watching VH1 one afternoon, where the video for "Into the Ocean" was featured. The song immediately struck something in me and I immediately downloaded it and listened to it over and over and over and -- well, you get the gist.

Not long after, I purchased the entire CD, "Foiled", and set about listening to it. However, I only really listened to "Into the Ocean" and "X Amount of Words", because I clearly have an attention span that will allow only two items into my mind at any given period of time.

But I just recently listened to "Foiled" in its entirety, and the CD blew me away.

Blue October is comprised of Justin Furstenfeld (lead vocals), Jeremy Furstenfeld (drums, percussion), Ryan Delahoussaye (violin/viola, mandolin, piano, vocals), C.B. Hudson (guitar) and Matt Noveskey (bass guitar). The band originated in Houston, TX.

The songs are written by Justin, who is a recovering drug addict and alcoholic, and has battled with bipolar disorder through most of his life. Most of the songs are about his battles with addiction, overcoming them, and letting go. And even for the listeners who have never, first-hand, experienced drug or alcohol addiction, the lyrics are relatable and hypnotically beautiful, from the flow and ebb beat of "Into the Ocean" to the smarting, harsh "Hate Me" to the forgiving and hopeful "Overweight". All of the songs are poetry at its finest, and make me wonder just what it is I'm doing with my writing career, because I could never string together those sentences and have them flow like that.

Blue October is innovative and not afraid to throw addiction, something society tends to sweep under the rug and hope it will resolve itself, into the faces of the listeners, not to demand sympathy but rather to remind that there are people out there who need sympathy, or even just a kind word or smile. And they pull that off without sounding preachy in the least.

I recommend "Foiled" to anyone who knows what it's like to hurt and feel alone, or knows someone who feels that way, or just simply wants to listen to beautiful words put to beautiful music.

"Foiled" definitely gets a 5 out of 5.


X-mas List Writing!

No matter your age, you always make a list of the things you want for X-mas. Or Christmas. Or whatever Let's-Exchanged-Gifts-Holiday.

So for years, I've slowly cultivated my list-writing skillz and have come up with a sure-fire way of getting whatever it is you ask for!

Because I'm so nice, I will be posting my own list as an example. Follow along and take notes. By the time you're done, you will be a X-mas list-writing pro!

Dear Santa, (always start off with 'dear'; it shows your sincerity)

You know, I'm used to disappointment, but fourteen years and still no pony?! That's fucking ridiculous and I demand some compensation for the trauma I've suffered. (use expletives and big words -- Santa's old and easily confused)

These are my demands:

1. World Domination
1. A giraffe. Stuffed or live, either is fine. If you can't swing the giraffe, then give me my damn pony!

2. A new cookie sheet. The one I have now is all burnt and one of the edges is curling up... probably from the time I made that giant peanut butter/chocolate chip cookie that was bigger than my head.

3. Sean Biggerstaff -- I don't even need to give a reason for this one.
(Less is more, kids. Great things just don't need words)

4. World Domination

4. The Batmobile. As a Batman fan, I need to show my appreciation for the comic/tv series somehow, and what better way than to advertise it while doing 120 on the highway? No cop would ticket me because they'd all be too busy staring in awe at the blazing tire marks in the road, wishing they, too, had the Batmobile.

5. An apology from Britney Spears for running over one of my family members. It hasn't happened yet, but it's only a matter of time.
(Looking to the future -- always a good decision)

6. The entire collection of MST3k, because a show that awesome needs someone to view every episode repeatedly... and I think I'm just the person for the job.

7. Oh, what the hell. World Domination.
(Santa's extra good to the ones who have big expectations)

8. An end to the Writer's Strike, because dammit, I have screenplays to write and while this stupid thing is going on (I support it whole-heartedly, btw) I can't actually do anything with them!

9. Waitress on DVD. Two words, fat man: Nathan. Fillion.

10. 2-3 inches added to my height. I'm a short ass, and we all know it. Make my life a little easier so I don't need to climb on kitchen counters to reach the top shelf.

11. A new president
(Santa loves politics, kids!) An IQ of at least 90 is a must.

12. Erase the three new Star Wars movies. You know you want to.

13. Bring back the 40's. Please.


Thanks, Santa! Give my love to Mrs. Claus!

Love always,
(This negates all the mean things you said)

ps: Those cookies, believe it or not, AREN'T for you. So stop eating them! Start eating the celery sticks with your pack mules, you could stand to lose a few.

See? Don't you feel more knowledgeable now? NOW GO, MY GENTLE SNOWFLAKES, AND WRITE YOUR OWN LISTS! Don't pull any punches (Santa hates the weak)! And remember: Christmas is a time for giving, but X-mas is a time for everything else! ♥



As sure as the sun will rise and as sure as Britney will run you over, X-mastime is upon us! Or Christmastime. Hanukkahtime. Kwanzaatime. Whatever you believe.

And as your host of this lovely site, it's my job to offer you ideas for gifts, whatever your delight may be. Is it for a lover? A parent? A sibling? A roommate? A person who's not really a friend but you'd feel bad if you didn't get them something?


1. Get better friends


No matter how many new diets come out or how many people you know are on a no-carb, no-fat, no-good kick, everyone abandons their "routine" in favor of the holidays. It's in our blood to bulk up for the winter to hibernate, and what better way to do that than to eat junk food, or as I like to call it, good shit?

Here's a recipe that is bulletproof. And if the gift's for a guy or girl friend, it's sure to get you laid!

Wreath Balls!

You will need...

* 1/2 cup butter (if I hear anyone bitching about how many calories are in butter, I will come over there and beat you.)
* 30 large marshmallows
* 1 1/2 teaspoons green food coloring
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 4 cups cornflakes cereal (like Special K! ... Not the drug.)
* 2 tablespoons cinnamon red hot candies

1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over low heat. Add the marshmallows, and cook until melted, stirring constantly. If you stop stirring for even a SECOND, it will rise up and slay you. Next, remove from heat, and stir in the food coloring, vanilla, and Ketamine cornflakes.

2. Quickly drop big, honkin' tablespoonfuls of the mixture onto waxed paper, and form into a wreath shape with lightly greased fingers (so for those who've always wanted to bathe in Crisco, now's your moment to shine). Immediately decorate with red hot candies. Allow to cool to room temperature before removing from waxed paper, and storing in an airtight container.




Tonight, I decided to show the world my love for Disney by going to see Enchanted, a movie where the animated and real worlds collide. And it was the most adorable thing ever.

Perpetually-optimistic and saccharine Princess Giselle (Amy Adams), having found Prince Edward (James Marsden) just yesterday, is on her way to the chapel to be married to him so that they may have their happily ever after. However, Edward's wicked mother Narissa (Susan Sarandon) refuses to let her son be married, because then she would lose her throne. So she tricks Giselle into taking a little detour to make a wish at a magic wishing well -- and pushes the princess down it, sending her to a world "where there are no happily ever afters", aka New York City, where Giselle is shocked that the real world isn't all sunshine and puppies. She meets jaded divorce attorney Robert Philip (Patrick Dempsey) and they... you probably know where this is going.

What a clever concept, Disney! I mean, seriously. I applaud you. It's about time you came up with something original.

The movie was charming and never had a down moment. Adams delights as Giselle, complete with shocked gasps and swooning and spontaneous singing and choreographed dancing, thinking the best of everyone (she's heard of being angry but never knew it really happened). Dempsey is hilarious as Robert, who doesn't sing or dance or believe in happily ever afters, even after 5 years of dating his girlfriend, Nancy (Indina Menzel). Sarandon, deliciously evil as Narissa, hams it up, channeling every evil Disney queen, from Maleficent to Ursula.

And James Marsden... oh my GAHD, he rocked as clueless and conceited Prince Edward, on his quest to save his true love, which includes stabbing buses and breaking out into song only to be run over by a group of bikers. He was so over-the-top and campy that he completely stole the show.

And the best part? EVERY SINGLE Disney cliché was used. I mean, all of them. From Snow White's poisoned apple to Cinderella's slave labor helpful rodents... Huh. There were a lot of animals in this film. What is this, Esop's fables?

Anyway, Enchanted was light, fluffy fun and a great way to pass 2 hours.

I give Enchanted 4 out of 5. If only because Timothy Spall didn't get enough screen time.


Congratulations, Sean!

Congratulations to Sean Biggerstaff for winning the BAFTA Scotland Award for BEST ACTOR in TELEVISION. He won for his portrayal of Jeremy Wolfenden in Consenting Adults.

That's right, bitches. I told you he's going places.

Photo taken without permission from the Sean Biggerstaff Official Site. I can expect Scotland Yard to arrive at my doorstep with a warrant for my arrest anytime now.


SPOTLIGHT! And it's on... Nathan Fillion!

I first saw Nathan Fillion during the last season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, where he played crazy priest Caleb, who worked for the original evil. And he was so creepy and yet so unbelievably handsome, I (of course) sat up and took notice. After a while, I looked past the good looks and was amazed at the acting, how natural he was and how very comfortable he was with himself and his character.

And I was all, "dayum, the man's good."

It was a year or so later that a friend of mine from college asked me to go to the movies with him to see Serenity, which was a big-screen adaptation of a television show that had been canceled. The girl that lived next door to my dorm was in love with the show and would frequently let people borrow her DVDs. After hearing about it from her and now from my friend, I went and researched the show called Firefly. An outer space western, complete with a snarky pirate-cowboy captain and his rowdy crew. And said captain, Malcolm Reynolds, was played by Nathan Fillion.

"Hells yes, I'll go!" I said to my friend. We went to the movies and I was far from disappointed. While the movie was non-stop action and great effects and humor, it was Nathan who shined as Mal Reynolds, sarcasting (new word!) his way through the film with his devil-may-care grin and southern lilt. And girls all across the galaxy swooned, including this one right here. I was hooked.

For Firefly, Nathan won the "Cinescape Genre Face of the Future - Male" award by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA, as well as the SyFy Genre Awards in 2006 for Best Actor/Television.

Isn't it nice when others recognize greatness?

I then found out that when Fox canceled the acclaimed Firefly, he and Alan Tudyk (another actor made of awesome) threw a party for the cast and crew. The infamous 'We Don't Work for FOX Anymore!' Party. After learning this, I wasn't just hooked, I was in lust love.

Nathan went on to star in the horror-comedy Slither, which I watched for the first time last night. I don't usually do well with horror movies, but I find that as I age and generally care less and less about everything horror doesn't bother me the way it used to. But anyway, what an awesome spoof movie, especially for him. Nathan does snark so well; we're made for each other. He won a 2006 Fangoria Chainsaw Awards nomination for Slither in the category of Dude You Don't Wanna Mess With.

He also had the starring role in the doomed TV show Drive, another Fox canceled production. My mother had been hooked on this show and was devastated when it ended. My weekly TV line-up was so booked that I had no time to watch it, but I, too, was saddened that Fox once again screwed him over (and not in the good, life-affirming way, either).

Waitress came out in 2006 to the delight of critics everywhere. Nathan played opposite Kerri Russell as a doctor with whom she begins an affair (and who the fuck can blame her? I mean, seriously?), but then ends things with him! Bitch is crazy. The film was critically acclaimed. Unfortunately, the director, Adrienne Shelley, was murdered before she could see the film open at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. (RIP, Adrienne)

Sorry to bring down the party. Back to Nathan.

Nathan launched a charitable project called "Kids Need to Read" on August 6th, 2007. I swear to God, the man's making a long-distance proposal to me. Usually I'm the one trying to get kids to read. I reiterate: we're made for each other.

According to www.imdb.com, Nathan's working on the new movie Trucker. WITH MICHELLE MONAGHAN. 2008 is going to be the best year ever.

So, in conclusion:

1. Nathan Fillion is about as close to "GOD" as one can get, aside from Donald Sutherland and Sean Biggerstaff.

2. He's an amazing actor whose talents are totally under-appreciated.

3. My ring size is a 6, but I wear rings on my middle finger only, so a 7's probably better. And I don't wear gold, Nathan, just to give you the head's up.

Go out, my gentle snowflakes, and go buy Firefly and Serenity and Waitress and Slither. You can also watch him on Sundays where he plays Adam Mayfair on Desperate Housewives.

And then write to Fox and tell them that they suck.


What To Watch on a Rainy Saturday Night

Mystery Science Theater 3000. MST3k.

Probably the best show ever.

Do you hate B-movies? Or love to hate them? Would you like to watch a guy and 2 robots watch them and make fun of them all the way through?

Then this is the show for you.

All episodes can be found on Youtube. I recommend "Prince of Space", "Werewolf", and "Santa Claus Conquers the Martians".


Nobody Owns Frank Lucas: "American Gangster" movie review

Ridley Scott, I love you. You know why? Because you directed Alien, that's why. Because you directed G.I. Jane and Gladiator.

And I know you meant well with this film, I really do. But you didn't quite mean well enough.

For the first, oh, let's say 1.25 hours of American Gangster, I had only four thoughts enter my head:

1. Damn, Denzel's still got it, never lost it come to think of it, and will always have it.

2. Those damn kids in front of me better stop throwing shit at the moviegoers in front of them or I'm going to flip my shit, and why the hell are 10-year olds in this kind of a movie, anyway?

3. Wow, this is dragging.

4. Russell Crowe's going to throw a phone at somebody.

While the performances were nothing short of great (what can you expect from Denzel Washington and that guy who uses Nextel as his own personal WMD?), the movie itself was too long, too convoluted, and didn't have enough screen time for Chiwetel Ejiofor.

However, it did somewhat pick up during the second half, only to fall a bit short again. It wasn't until the climax (the police raid) that I really sat up and paid attention to something other than the performances and the dialog. This scene was so eye-popping and -- dare I say it -- real. For a film set in the 1970's, they didn't go all anachronistic and fit the squad with flak jackets and M-16's. They gave them rifles, boot-cut blue jeans, and mallets.

That was one thing I really enjoyed about the movie: they never let you forget what the time period was. Vietnam was always being talked about and being used for financial gain, people were driving cars I don't even know the names of, they were listening to 60's and 70's dance music, and a 20% tip for a full breakfast was $1.

Ridley Scott tried his best, but there was something about this film that fell flat, even among all the charismatic gangsters, the interesting drug ring, the family dramas, the police corruption.

American Gangster is a lot better than most of the movies out there, but it certainly isn't the best. But I recommend it to anyone who has 2.5 hours to spare and whoever wants to see the Denzel Washington at his high point.

Plus, I hear that Russell's buying stock in T-Mobile, so you'd better go if you value your face.

I give American Gangster a 4/5.


Wow, way to knock me out of my comfort zone, ABC.

I was perfectly fine with disliking this season of Grey's. I've felt like it's lost a lot of its magic, especially when we take into consideration the whole thing with Eva (recycling the Denny Duquette storyline? C'mon, Shonda.) and this George-Izzie relationship that makes me want to throw up in my mouth.

So, after missing the first half of last week's episode and tuning in and out of the second half, I decided to sit down and watch last night's episode, "Physical Attraction, Chemical Reaction (4.07)".

And it was good.


Did I miss a meeting? I mean, seriously, I was all good with Grey's going steadily downhill. I'd come to terms with it after the whole "let's crash a CRUISELINER INTO A FUCKING BRIDGE" hullabaloo, or whatever happened.

And today? I felt a spark while watching. The spark I'd felt back when I first started with Season 1. Maybe it's the Dr. Hahn replacing Burke as the Cardiothorastic guru, or maybe it's Derek and Meredith hopefully getting their shit together. Maybe it's Lexie Grey, Meredith's half-sister, and all of her adorable awkwardness.


Whatever it is, life is slowly creeping back into this show. I do have a few complaints that ABC may soon fix:

1. You turned Callie from a kick-ass force of nature into a scatter-brained, incompetent, mopey incompetent. Um, stop?

2. I still think Kate Walsh needs to come back to the show. That Private Practice is wonderfully mediocre and she's squandering her talent there. But if she wants to bring Tim Daly with her, then by all means...

3. Izzie and George used to be likable. Now they're just annoying. And together, they make me want to go out and start lighting fires. Do whatever you have to in order to end this. Izzie'd already said she'd lost the love of her life when Denny died, and then two seconds later she's confessing her love to George? I don't buy it, and neither does the rest of the audience. CUT. THE. SHIT.

Conclusion: Looks like my Thursday nights are booked again. Damn.


Interview with the Va-- Director.

The stairs groaned their displeasure as I walked up to the door that would lead me to my very first interview, two plates of home-made chocolate chip peanut butter cookies balancing in my hand. All I could think about was that I knew how it would go: he would listen to my questions, stifle a laugh, and then suggest I come back once I gained a modicum of intelligence.

It was almost enough to make me leave the cookies at the door and high-tail it back down the stairs.

But despite my worries I knocked and waited a moment until the door swung open, revealing Devon Scalisi, veteran actor of Salem State and first-time director. He smiled disarmingly and ushered me in, thanking me again for doing this (and for making cookies).

"This is my first interview," Devon admitted as we took our two-person party into his room. He sprawled out in his computer chair, the very picture of relaxed grace, and I sat stiffly on the edge of his bed, shuffling my questions and toying with the blue bedspread. His fingers tapped out a cigarette from a pack that materialized out of nowhere, deftly igniting the end. Devon took a drag from it and sighed at the rush of nicotine.

"That's good," I laughed, voice quavering. "This is my first interview, too. We can be horrible together!"

He snorted and I added 'suave' to the list of the things in life I've failed at being.

"Okay," I began, taking out my camera to film the entire conversation, and suddenly he sat up straight, all business now, eyes smoldering and mouth pinched into a thin line. "Why 12 Angry Jurors?"

Harmless question. Hopefully I would get an answer just as innocuous.

With a thoughtful noise, he tapped the accumulating ashes from his cigarette into a glass ashtray. "Why 12 Angry Jurors… when I first started to look for a play, I started to think about ensemble, something where no one would be hogging the spotlight. It was important to me to have everyone on the same page. When you have leads, for example: they have their bows at the end, and if you have something like A Doll's House, Nora and Torvald will undoubtedly take the last bow. As they should, for they're the two characters that move the story along. I didn't want to have [in 12 Angry Jurors] main characters that the story revolves around. Sure, there are characters that speak more than others in the show, but you need the 12 to move the story along. I wanted an ensemble piece where the characters would be on stage together, growing together, with no separation."

He trailed off and then smiled, satisfied, while I sat there gaping like a fool, wondering how I would ever edit something that in-depth, how I would be able to take anything out of an answer like that and still leave it whole.

"Cool," tumbled inadequately from my lips and I inwardly groaned. He must have thought I was the most life-challenged person to ever walk the earth. I drew in a shaky breath. "I, um, sorry." I glanced back down at the sheet of paper, at the second question which was horribly cliché. My career in journalism was looking dismal. And then I remembered that I wasn't a journalist.

I lifted my head and met his eye. He'd been acting all his life; I could act for the next half hour and make him believe I was Confidence incarnate. "You're an actor first, having performed in a great many plays (including William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, Edward Albee's Zoo Story, John Guare's Six Degrees of Separation, and Samuel Beckett's Endgame), so when was it that you first started acting? What was your first actual performance?"

A grin lit Devon's face, and I relaxed. He was going to play along. " I first started acting -- my first actual play performance -- my senior year of high school. I had a teacher who, with the drama department, was putting on a musical, and I wasn't a musical guy, I still have problems with them but have learned to embrace them more now." He laughed and shrugged, tapping the ashes off his cigarette, quickly burning to the filter. "So, I didn't participate and my teacher wanted to know why. I told him I didn't have any interest. He asked me what I would like to do, and I said I'd like to perform gritty, little one-acts, grittier theater, because I had done some class work for Equus at the time and it really enticed me.

"So we turned a classroom into a make-shift, small little black box theater, and we would perform these one-acts for an audience who could fit into this classroom. I did three of them my senior year, one or two or three-person shows, and I loved it. That was my first real taste of theater."

His answers were so fluid, so natural, that I felt I was watching a really good movie, where it feels like no time at all passes. I was so enraptured with his words, absorbing them, that it took me a moment to realize he had finished and was now looking expectantly at me for the next question.

"When did you decide you were ready to direct?"

He chuckled. "Oh, wow… hm. That's a good question." I glowed under the praise. "I'd taken a directing class a year and a half ago, but because of my schedule I had to drop it, I had too much going on. Then I re-took it last year, but I mean… I knew I wanted to try it eventually. I like to think I have an organized mind, a grander scheme of a conceptual vision, but I would never actually label myself as a potential director. I've always been an actor-in-training. After being here so long, I felt I'd come to a point -- in my Super Senior Year," he broke off to grin, "and decided that in the setting of a student theater ensemble production (shows put on and acted by students) it would be the time to start directing."

It was time to reveal a secret no journalist would ever admit to: "So, I don't know all that much about the play" -- ouch -- "but I know that there's this idea of a mandatory death sentence, which couldn't be instilled in the current justice system. In what kind of world does the play take place?"

His answer was immediate. "1975. Catherine Bertrand (the artistic director) and I were deciding on a time for the play to take place, and we decided upon 1975 after some research. It was the year of Taylor vs. Louisiana, a case in which -- in the end -- his verdict shouldn't have been. It was also a time in which women didn't serve on a jury panel… actually, 1975 was the last year that this rule was present. Louisiana was the last state to get rid of it.

"1975 was a violent era. The social norm was changing; it was a post-hippie world, Vietnam was ending, Nixon resigned… people were turning to sex, drugs, disco as modes of escape while the reality was that things were extremely tense. Angry. It was an era of hostility. The Taylor vs. Louisiana case just added to it: a panel of white men deciding the fate of a minority."

Almost finished. "The play was originally titled "12 Angry Men", but there are women cast in some of the roles. What were your intentions behind this?"

A bright smile curled his lips. "Sherman Sergel wrote a version titled 12 Angry Women, but the dialog was softened. Women are normally written to be more sensitive -- I don't like that, and I didn't like that version, so I used the script from 12 Angry Men. I wanted the women to have language tendencies of men."

I grinned, his happiness infectious. "Do you plan on directing anything in the future?"

"Yes! In fact, the theater group I helped co-found, Counter-Productions Theater Company, is putting on a production of Glengarry Glen Ross by David Mamet at the Factory Theater in South Boston. It's another grittier play, another depiction of the raw side of the human equation. The violent deconstruction of man, and the greed of man."

Trying to think of a good segue-way into my last question failed, so I asked outright, staring at this man, a chameleon, a creator, a voice that spoke above most others. "Any advice for all the aspiring directors out there?"

"Know why you want to do a show. "Because I like it" doesn't cut it. Have a reason, know how you want to affect an audience. Theater exists for the audience, not for the glory of a director. Find honesty in the piece. You have to love a show to illustrate what it can do for everyone else."

12 Angry Jurors is playing at the Callan Studio Theater November 8th, 9th, 10th at 8pm and the 11th at 2pm.


Gone, baby. Just gone.

Ben Affleck, I'm not a religious person by any stretch, but I mean it sincerely when I say that I forgive you your trespasses.

Ben's directorial debut was fan-f*cking-tastic, and I mean that. It's so nice to pay $10 and not see something that sucks. Gone, Baby, Gone was ridiculously good. There wasn't a bad thing about it.

Let's start with the synopsis: In the gritty streets of South Boston, a little girl named Amanda McCready goes missing, her disheveled mother begging on TV for whoever it was that took her to let her come home. Local private investigators and lovers, Patrick Kenzie and Angie Gennaro, are asked by the little girl's aunt and uncle to assist in the case, already the police's top priority. Along with two detectives, Patrick uncovers a conspiracy that delves far deeper than mere police corruption.

Casey Affleck ("the cuter and better actor" Affleck brother) bursts into his first leading role with such genuineness and skill, you'd think he'd been an A-list actor for years. He was so quietly real, so hard as Patrick, both real man and character having been cultivated on the streets of Southie. On a scale of 1-10, his performance was a 10 to the 10th power.

Ed Harris played detective Remy Bressant, a man who's seen many things, who believes that sometimes you need to do the wrong thing in order to do the right. Harris, a veteran actor, was awesome, and not at all what he appeared. Bressant was the kind of anti-hero you love... only to find your faith in him shattered when you get too comfortable. There were moments where I felt like he was yelling at me, he was so into it.

The supporting cast was great, Michelle Monaghan as Angie, the idealist girlfriend and voice of reason. I loved her so much as Harmony in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, one of my favorite comedies, and I was glad to see her skill wasn't limited to just humor. Amy Ryan as coked-out Helene McCready was phenomenal, continually having me torn between cringing at her language and indifference to her child's disappearance and sympathizing with her as the reality of the situation came crashing down upon her. Amy Madigan as Beatrice was amazingly heartfelt, her desperation to find Amanda at any cost just tugged at me. Titus Welliver is a new face for me, but he was great, although his mustache was a bit distracting (it had its own life force, like Sam Waterston's eyebrows).

And Morgan Freeman is Morgan Freeman. 'Nuff said. There are no words for his greatness.

The cinematography, though, was what clinched it, the shots of Boston, of the real people who inhabit Southie, never sparing us from those who would be deemed ugly or disgusting. There would be shots of the sides of buildings, eroding with time and carelessness, graffitied, everyone leaving their mark. There was one shot of a quarry, surrounded by jagged cliffs, that reflected the sky in the water, and it was like looking up a well into the sky up-side down. I wanted that image hanging on my wall, it was so well captured.

The film itself always left you guessing until the very end, never revealing a thing. The viewer learned with Patrick, was a part of the investigation from beginning to end to after-end. It was a poignant piece that will definitely stay with me, cement Ben Affleck's career as a director, and open up a mess of doors for the littlest Affleck.

I give Gone Baby Gone 5 out of 5.


Rest In Peace...

Robert Goulet is dead.


Nov. 26, 1933 - Oct. 30, 2007


It's, like, impossible....

... that TV has a show THIS good. Seriously. I remember when I used to like Grey's Anatomy, but not even that or Heroes can compare to the love I have for Dirty Sexy Money.

But Trip wasn't so awesome in this episode. WHICH SHOWS HOW AMAZING AN ACTOR DONALD SUTHERLAND REALLY IS!!!!

In the latest episode, "The Bridge", it's the twins' 25th birthday, which means that they're being awarded $25 million each. To "help them get started" in life. Their first checkbook. Um, I better get some of that when I turn 25. The things I could do... the places I could travel...


Brian Jr. tells Mei Ling Hwa that Brian Sr. is his father and she freaks the eff out, announcing that she's made her choice and wants a divorce. Brian has a meltdown of his own, confides in Nick (!!), and eventually goes to Mei Ling Hwa for a second chance. She orders both father and son out of the house until she makes her decision. The two Brians go to live with Trip and Letitia in Brian Sr.'s old room. IT'S SO CUTE.

Karen wants Patrick to get Freddie into the exclusive club Patrick's a member of. When he refuses, Karen sweetly asks after his special friend (Carmelita)... "the one with the low voice and the eyeliner". WHAT A GOOD DELIVERY. Karen, I can't like you, I need to hate someone on this show. But God, you were so bomb in this episode. Natalie Zea, you're so cool. I want to be you when I grow up. Anyway, Patrick eventually brings Freddie into the club, and Freddie's welcomed warmly by two members who reminisce about some golf thing Freddie did in the past, yadda yadda, yawn.

Nick has a meeting with Simon Elder, who tells Nick (vaguely) about his past and the role Dutch played in it. Simon and Dutch were apparently good friends... and Simon implies that Trip probably had something to do with Dutch's plane going down. After a very insightful limo-ride, Simon leaves Nick with a "no-strings" option: go work for him and do all the charity work Nick wants to do (but can't, since he's babysitting the Darlings).

As for the twins, they are split over the Natalie Kimpton thing and therefore demand to hold their own birthday parties -- for $2 million... each. Juliet gets the house to hold hers, and Jeremy... gets the Brooklyn Bridge.

Yes, let me repeat that: the Brooklyn Bridge.

Juliet then learns from her friend, Astrid, that a pregnant Natalie had asked Astrid for a tampon the previous week at a club. Seems Natalie ain't so preggo no mo'. Jeremy confronts Natalie about it at his party and she admits that she'd thought she was pregnant, but when it turned out she wasn't she just kept up the story. Jeremy, heartbroken, tells her to stay away from him. And then proceeds to sing "All By Myself" on top of the bridge, a move that causes his party to be broken up by the cops.

Trip and Jeremy have a bit of a tiff over Jeremy being irresponsible with his life, for not being the kind of man Trip wants him to be. Nick tells Trip that he's not being fair to Jeremy, that Jeremy needs to live his own life. At the end of the episode, Jeremy apologizes to Trip and asks him for help in finding a job, which makes daddy so proud and Courtney all teary-eyed.

Letitia was in this episode somewhere, but she cheated on Trip (and therefore Donald Sutherland) for 40 years, so she doesn't count.

But it makes me wonder if the DNA reports show that it's not that one of the Darlings isn't hers, but that Nick may be a Darling....

Verrrrrrry interesting.

AND NOW I HAVE TO WAIT ANOTHER 2 DAYS UNTIL THE NEXT EPISODE!!!!! Which I won't even see. Thanks a lot, Halloween. You ruined everything.


Blessed Irreverance... Or, the return of the "chester" comics.

Chester Comics was a series of short, semi-surreal comics about the people at my former college. They were quite the hit, but after I transferred I stopped making them. However, I decided a few weeks ago that I would continue them, only dealing with a much broader playing field, different people and subject matter...

And I bring them to you!

edit: I hate this blog template.


The Day Has Come, and What a Sad Day It Is....

What day, you might ask? The day I got through about ten minutes of Heroes before I decided it'd be worth my time to make some eggplant parm and doodle.

AKA: I didn't care enough to watch it. The show is just so boring, and these "twists"... I'm passionately ambivalent about it all. Just like tonight. It's on in half an hour, I have an essay to write, and I really couldn't care.


In other news, Dumbledore from the Harry Potter series is gay. If anyone didn't see that coming, please exit out of this window and never return. (see below)

I was really surprised J.K. Rowling didn't out Remus, who was gayer than a summer morning. But he's dead and happily reunited with his ex-convict-but-not-really boyfriend in the afterlife. Or something.


Anyway, I really want to see Gone, Baby, Gone. Really really. Has anyone seen it yet? Would anyone be willing to go? Not this weekend, I have a slew of Halloween parties to attend, but sometime soon?

SPEAKING OF! My Halloween costume?

I was going to learn how to do a backhand spring, but then I would've been Harley Quinn in a wheelchair.



Oh, for crying out loud. This so figures.

Thanks for dashing all my hopes and dreams, WGA.



SPOTLIGHT! And it's on.... Sean Biggerstaff!

SPOTLIGHT, my newest segment, is about actors or actresses you should really be aware of.

I'm pleased to announce that the first (and foremost!) entry goes to Sean Biggerstaff. For those of you who know me, you know I can never say enough about Cashback or The Winter Guest (although as much as I talk about Sean in that movie, I'm actually saying more about Emma Thompson... but I digress).

I swear to God, the UK feeds their kids some secret drug that makes them superior to everyone else. All the talented actors and actresses come from across the pond. Hey, UK, can you send us some of that stuff over here? We're really lacking (not counting Donald Sutherland, Morgan Freeman, and Kevin Spacey. I was going to list Cate Blanchett and Judy Dench, but, oh, they're from the UK, aren't they?).

Anyway, Sean Biggerstaff made himself known to me when I saw the first Harry Potter movie. For those of you still scratching your heads, he played Oliver Wood. And he was quite the commodity in my eyes, because as an American child I was taught only three things about Scotland (his home country):

1. It's the land in which men wear skirts.
2. There's a dinosaur in a lake.
3. Sean Connery created the universe.

So to see someone that young command a five-minute scene with such relaxed confidence and good humor was pleasantly surprising. (But remember that I was thirteen at the time, so it was mostly "OH MY GOD, HE HAS A SCOTTISH ACCENT!" But looking back, I can appreciate the actual acting now.)

I was fortunate enough to stumble upon www.imdb.com a couple of years ago, so one day after re-watching that scene in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, I wandered on over to IMDB to see if Sean had any other films out.

He did. Former fashion photographer-turned-writer-director Sean Ellis put out an Oscar-nominated short called Cashback, which was then made into a feature-length indie film of the same name. Starring... you guessed it! Sean Biggerstaff.

(Sidenote: I can hear the girls giggling over his last name. Yes, it's riotous, great, we're done, moving on.)

I purchased Cashback (for an obscene amount of money... more than $19.99, I can tell you that much) on Amazon.com, because I couldn't find it for the life of me in stores. Apparently Best Buy only caters to huge blockbusters like Pirates of the Caribbean instead of wonderful sleepy films like Cashback. Well, boo to them. Anyway, I watched it one afternoon while straightening my hair. It required a second watch.

And a third. And a fourteenth. Because it was good. I could go into the cinematography and the directing choices, but as great as those were this movie was all about Sean. His portrayal of Ben was genuine. It's what I love most about his acting, of what little I've seen. He has this knack for just sliding into character and making the performance so believable that I have trouble discerning him from the character he's playing. It happened with Oliver, it happened with Tom (The Winter Guest), and it happened with Ben. Within the first ten minutes of the movie, I felt as if I, too, had insomnia and hadn't slept in forever. And I was totally and completely certain that Ben was indeed an artist just coming out of a break-up who was so unsure of what to do with all of his newfound free time (time he would have once spent sleeping) that he joined the graveyard shift at a supermarket.


Reader's Digest version: Sean became Ben, inside and out. End of story.

Sean just played the lead in the BBC drama Consenting Adults, all about the life of Jeremy Wolfenden, and is in an upcoming movie, Hippie Hippie Shake, alongside Sienna Miller and Cillian Murphy about counterculturalist Richard Neville's misadventures in London at the end of the 1960s. It sounds like a promising premise. Everyone loves the 60's.

But back to Sean.

I really hope to see more of him sometime soon, and I hear that his stage work is phenomenal. Maybe one day I'll be able to see him in an off-Broadway play, or even on Broadway! Wouldn't that be something?

Sean Biggerstaff has fast become one of my favorite actors, right up there with Donald and Alan. He's just too talented not to be. A lot of people aren't aware of him (until I mention Oliver Wood, and then comes the collective "Ohhhh..."), and they should be. So my advice is to re-watch the Quidditch scenes in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, rent The Winter Guest, buy Cashback, and petition to bring him to American shores so we can see him on stage.

Sean? Here's to you and your illustrious career!

Sidenote 1.5: I wrote him a letter not too long ago. I've become that which I hate: those annoying fangirls. Ugh. Whatever, he's so cool that he deserved it.

Sidenote 2: I won't even lie. I'm in the middle of writing a screenplay, and I'm writing one of the main characters for him. Good thing the Writer's Guild isn't going on strike or this would be a waste of time. Oh, wait...

(+) =

... You guys have no idea what I'm talking about.

Maroon 5 was a bit fushia...

Well, I have to admit that I'm a bit disappointed in Maroon 5. I saw them last night at the Fleet Center (or whatever they're calling it this week) in Boston, along with 260,000 screaming 14-year olds.

I don't know what it was. Perhaps it was Adam Levine's awkward connections with the crowd, continually making innuendoes about feeling heat and being sexy. The only time I was interested in him speaking was when he introduced the band members.

They did play some of their best hits, but I was disappointed to find that they focused more on songs from Songs About Jane than they did from their new album, It Won't Be Soon Before Long. They never played "Not Falling Apart", which is one of the best songs on the album, nor did they play "Back At Your Door", which is my favorite song off of It Won't Be Soon...

And that 6 minute drum solo? Genesis's drum solo went for 11 minutes longer, and it was a lot better.

Because Genesis is better, but that's another story.

All in all, it was an okay concert. The Hives opened for them and I enjoyed their performance. I've never seen anyone so energetic on stage before, not even when I saw Bon Jovi. But if you have the chance to see Maroon 5, I suppose you can take the opportunity.

And then my mother (my concert buddy) told me that she could've gotten tickets for the Gone Baby Gone premiere (Ben Affleck's new movie), and didn't so we could see Maroon 5. I could've been on the red carpet asking Ben Affleck about his new directing career (which is being lauded by critics) but instead I was at a wonderfully mediocre concert.

Sometimes I wonder if my family members stopped getting oxygen to their brains.



Two movies in a weekend. Not bad. But today, my gentle snowflakes, I'm here to talk about the most amazing legal drama I've seen in a while: Michael Clayton.

See, whenever I go to see a George Clooney movie, I'm afraid it's just going to be a bunch of "ooh, look at me, I'm good-looking." And as much as George loves mugging for the camera, this movie was really great.

Two of my favorite actors were in this: Tom Wilkinson (AWESOME British actor) and Tilda Swinton (AWESOME British actress). I smell a pattern!

George Clooney stars as Michael Clayton, the "janitor" sent by a major law firm to clean up messes. He's the best at what he does... too bad he doesn't do the whole 'life' thing too well. Between a failed foray into the restaurant business with his alcoholic brother (who got into trouble with the Irish mob, leaving Michael to pay his dues) and a gambling problem, Michael can't find the time to pay attention to his son or take a day off.

He works for Kenner, Bach & Leeder law firm, cleaning up all of the client messes, hit and runs, and handling stories about crooked politicians or "shoplifting housewives".

U-North, the agrochemical company that is being represented by Kenner, Bach & Leeder, is successfully closing a 3 billion-dollar case in which small farm owners filed suit against the company, claiming that the U-North chemicals were hazardous and potentially lethal. The company's brilliant litigator, Arthur Edens (Wilkinson -- MY MAN!), has a breakdown and holds in his possession everything that could sabotage the case, giving the money to the plaintiffs. And U-North's in-house chief counselor, Tilda Swinton (the White Witch from Narnia, kids), is doing everything she can to keep it quiet.

But it falls to Michael to clean it up, and possibly learn things about himself in the process. Like that, yes, we know you have a perfect smile, thanks.

This movie totally had my attention from the get-go. It's incredibly smart and very suspenseful. I took my YiaYia (grandmother in Greek)to see it, and she really enjoyed it. It made her think afterward.

YiaYia: "You know, Courtney, you say that every movie you see is good."
Me: "That's because I don't see bad movies, YiaYia."

I give Michael Clayton a 5 out of 5. You guys should really invest your $10.25 to see it. You won't be disappointed.

ps: Whatever you do, pet the goddamn horses.



Mysterious deaths, red carpet cat fights, and kick-ass transsexuals -- OH MY!

This show really has everything. I almost wish I was a part of the Darling family, if only because the entertainment factor goes up exponentially when they're around.

Episode 3 of Dirty Sexy Money was really good. Just like episodes 1 and 2.

In this episode, the conflict to be dealt with is one that we've suddenly seen an increase of ever since Paris Hilton made it popular: a sex tape. Nick is charged by Darling family publicist Rebecca Colfax (who's as cutthroat and hilarious as anything) to pay the man ONE MILLION DOLLARS (Austin Powers...? Anyone? No? Darn) who has the tape of Karen with her fianceé's caddy and is threatening to release it onto the internet.

That, and Nick goes to the police with the collection of all of the dealings (legal and illegal) of Simon Elder, which had been in his father's briefcase the day he died. Nick believes that Elder was definitely involved with his father's death. Despite Tripp ()'s warnings that the police won't be of any help, the police indeed prove to be useless (quelle surprise), as no one wants to tackle the world's richest man. Tripp pleads with Nick to let him help, but Nick isn't entirely sure that Tripp had nothing to do with the death, either.

Jeremy is going to find himself in hot water soon, involved in a relationship with twin sister's former best friend and now hated rival, Natalie Kimpton. Juliet feels (with her "twintuition") that something is up with her brother, despite his vehement denials. It culminates in a showdown between Juliet and Natalie on the red carpet the night of her brother's senate campaign kick-off. Jeremy sides with his sister in front of all the press, much to Natalie's chagrin, but he makes it up to her by giving her a diamond necklace.

Speaking of Patrick, he made me fume when he broke up with Carmelita, the transgendered woman he's been seeing. She stands up for herself and makes quite an exit. You go, girl! But Patrick laments the loss of her to Nick during a limo ride. ("She made me 30 pairs of underwear with my favorite Yankees on the butts... That's love. What kind of jerk throws that away?")


Patrick kicks off his campaign by ending his speech with an epitaph of Nick's, "Tomorrow is another day, of opportunity, of chance." AND THEN HE GETS BACK TOGETHER WITH CARMELITA!!!!

Speaking of:

THAT'S HER!!! Isn't she absolutely gorgeous?! Her name is Candis Cayne, and she's just beautiful. And a great actress, if Dirty Sexy Money is anything to go by. I actually got into a fight on IMDB's message board about her with some Bible-thumping bitch who kept saying that the child Candis and her husband adopted is going to grow up depraved, because Candis isn't a real woman and God hates her.

You can imagine my retort. Just let me say that it was good.

So, back to the sex tape debacle: Nick goes to pay off the man for the sex tape with the million he got from one of the family's MANY vaults full of money, but the man's girlfriend explains that someone made a better offer -- three million. She doesn't know who bought it. It turns out, at the end of the episode, that SIMON ELDER (gasp) bought it, but one of Elder's lackies gives it to Nick with all legal documents and copies.

The lacky warns Nick: "He's not the man you think he is, and neither is your boss."


Next episode? LISA GEORGE FINALLY TELLS OFF KAREN! That's right, Karen! You're annoying and Nick doesn't love you anymore. SO BEAT IT!


Words are flowing out....

.... and they're flowing out because this movie was good.

While I'll admit that director Julie Taymor was a bit self-indulgent, Across the Universe is definitely worth the $10. It's not your typical musical, which makes it all the more real (and better).

The cast was perfect; they worked so well with and off of each other. Especially Jim Sturgess (Jude) and Joe Anderson (Max): best friends if I've ever seen them. Evan Rachel Wood did a wonderful job, and I was also really impressed with Martin Luther McCoy for his JoJo (Jimi Hendrix) and Dana Fuchs, who played the role of Sadie (Janis Joplin). I'd been listening to the soundtrack for about three weeks before seeing the movie, and when I first heard the song "Helter Skelter", I thought Janis had come back from the dead.

However, in a single scene, Eddie Izzard (that's right!) as Mr. Kite stole the show. It was surreal as can be and I absolutely loved it. After taking the course Surrealism and Rebellion with a man sent to earth as a gift (Michael Deragon, my former professor), I felt I could appreciate it a lot more. And appreciate it I did. I was so impressed with the circus scene. I'd see it again just for that.

The songs were great, even Bono's renditions of "I am the Walrus" and "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds". You'd think that ANY cover of ANY Beatles song would be terrible, especially any done by Bono... but these were not terrible in any way. Like I said, I've been listening to the soundtrack non-stop. I highly recommend you get your butt to Amazon.com and buy it. Totally worth it.

There were some issues I had with transitions, but that's purely technical and fades away in the backdrop of a movie I won't soon forget.

I give Across the Universe 4 out of 5.

Grey's Anatomy

Dear Grey's...

You jumped it. I'm probably done with you.



I *was* going to review for Dirty Sexy Money...

... but something happened on the way to the TV.

So, I'm at home, all geared up to watch Dirty Sexy Money before Grey's Anatomy starts at 9pm. My mother was kind enough to tape it for me, so I'm fast forwarding through the tape (which has all her shows on it) and I stop right at the beginning of the newest episode of Bones.

I used to watch Bones sporadically when it was in its first season. And if I happened to be in the room when it was on, I'd watch it. I really enjoyed the chemistry between David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel; they reminded me of Detectives Olivia Benson and Elliot Stabler from Law & Order: SVU. You were just DYING for them to get together. But I never really made the time for Bones.

NOW I'm wondering what the eff I've been doing!!

Right from the start of the episode (titled: "Death in the Saddle"), I was hooked. Some little kid on a field trip finds a dead body behind some bushes, maggots writhing in and dropping out of its eye sockets. I was like, "EWWWWW...... awesome."

So naturally I need to watch it and find out who did it. Another thing in common with Law & Order.

The body is missing its feet, which are found several, um, feet away. Severed with precision. Also during examination, raw oats and molasses are found in the victim's stomach... horse food. Dr. Brennan, or "Bones" as she's called, researches it and discovers that racing horses are buried separate from their feet. The feet get their own resting spot, as the feet of a horse represent power.

Which leads them to discover what the victim, Ed Milner, had been up to.

He was into "pony play", a sexual role-playing game derived from S&M where the submissive one is dressed up and assumes the identity of a horse, and the dominant one plays the rider, who commands the horse. The "pony" is treated exactly as a horse would be: saddled, bit in the mouth, led around on a lead, given commands, eat from troughs, and are rubbed down and placed into stables. When in the role of a "pony", the man or woman loses their real identity and truly becomes the horse.

The best part? Ed Milner's pony name is "Mr. Ed". I had to pause the tape and crack up for a good two minutes.

Agent Booth, played by David Boreanaz, is less than impressed. He's quick to judge and fly out with the snappy comments -- which I love.

While Booth and Bones investigate the mansion that houses these pony games, Angela Montenegro, an artist who specializes in reconstructing facial features and crime scenes and also Bones's bffl, is trying to undergo hypnosis to remember the name of the man she'd married one drunken night in Tahiti so she can divorce his ass and marry her boyfriend, Dr. Jack Hodgins, THE MOST SNARKY MAN ON THE PLANET AND AFTER MY OWN HEART.

I actually didn't pay much attention to this substory. I was too focused on my jealousy of how pretty Michaela Conlin (Angela) is and how much T.J. Thyne (Hodgins) rocks my skull.

Eric Millegan's Dr. Zack Eddy, the akward and neophyte GENIUS, is so hilariously tragic. He's so awkward. I love him.

Hodgins and Eddy are like the bffl's you see in every sitcom... except together they're COMEDIC GOLD.

"You really suck all the fun out of any moment of personal triumph." Hodgins wins at life.

But anyway, it turns out that Mr. Ed's (tee hee... "A horse is a horse, of course of course") rider, "Annie Oakley", killed him because she'd left her husband for him, but he wasn't prepared to leave his wife (who was divorcing him anyway after finding him in the stable being rubbed down by Annie). So, she buried him like a horse, complete with slamming a hoof knife into his forehead, which is how horses are slaughtered.

Okay, I need a second to get that image out of my head. And possibly take a minute to cry. I hate humans. We should pull a Caligula and elect a horse into the senate. I mean, we've already got a bunch of asses there, anyway.

But I digress...

I think after this smartly funny and interesting episode that I'm going to have to take time to continue watching it.

And don't even get me started on how House is still so cool. I didn't get to finish that episode... Grey's came on.

Conclusion: I STILL didn't get to see Dirty Sexy Money!!!

You like that? Yeah, I thought so.


Five Days, Episode 2..... Thoughts.

Thoughts on the second part of "Five Days":

1. Wow, Matt. Just attack/walk out on everyone who says the wrong thing. That sort of behavior makes you look really innocent to the press.

2. Kyle's mom, you're the MAN. Sort of.

3. Kyle. Kyle, Kyle, Kyle. I have no idea what role you play in this whole thing, but you freak me out and therefore deserve to be arrested. Glad the police agreed with me.

4. ROSIE!!!! Safe... and totally physically unharmed? In your great-grandfather's trailer? Um. Quoi?

5. Dear wannabe journalist whose name I can't remember,

You're a fame-greedy, shameless whore and I hate you. And your mother wore stupid hats.

Not yours,

6. PENELOPE WILTON, YOU WIN AT LIFE. "How did I get to be so old?"... your press conference... YOU. Oh my God, you are so awesome, even if you're playing a not-so-good mother. BUT YOU DO IT SO WELL. I LOVED YOU AS BARBARA IN SHAUN OF THE DEAD.

7. Tanya, stop talking. kthx.


9. I have no idea what you're doing, Sarah Wheeler, but crying in your car after being told to leave the family alone was kind of sketchy. God, I hope you're not some crazy stalker/not planning on stealing Ethan.

10. Iain, you rock. Get down with your camera-shy self.

This show is so good. As a character drama, though. It ain't no Law & Order or CSI.


Proof That God Hates Me.

Of course when I start writing screenplays the Writer's Guild is threatening to go on strike. And now producers are telling writers that their services are no longer needed.

Did the boat leave and I just wasn't on it?


Read it here: http://www.abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/story?id=3706514&page=1

Oh, Hollywood. GET IT TOGETHER!

"No One Mourns the Wicked"

And nobody in all of Oz
No Wizard that there is or was
Is ever gonna bring me down!

I am fortunate enough to have a mother who exceeds the definition of "AMAZING". Not only is she my best friend and loves me unconditionally, but she bought me tickets to see Wicked at the Boston Opera House last night (She also bought me Genesis concert tickets, The Police concert tickets, and Maroon 5 -- which is coming up next week, with a review).

After seeing Wicked for the first time, I can only say this: _______________.

That's right. I have no words.

The play was nothing short of spectacular. I was absolutely riveted... even when my sister spilled her sprite all over my foot. I've never seen anything like Wicked. The special effects were incredible, the costumes were beautiful and brilliant, and the performances? Oh man. I needed a cigarette when all was said and done.

For the unworthy idiots people who don't know, Wicked is the prequel to TheWizard of Oz. We learn how Glinda and Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West, got to be who they are. AND OH MY GOD, WHAT A DELIGHTFULLY COMPLEX AND SURPRISING STORY.

I won't spoil it for those who haven't seen it yet, but let's just say that the whole thing about the Wicked Witch being evil...? TOTAL misunderstanding.

Victoria Matlock played Elphaba, and she was fantastic. She was wonderfully sarcastic and sharp, and she conveyed so much emotion into every word she spoke. I was so impressed by her.

But it was Christina DeCicco who stole the show as the self-absorbed and uproarious Glinda ("the 'guh' is silent"). She absolutely glowed. And she was SO. DAMN. FUNNY. Oh my God, she did this hilarious childish falsetto and acted like a spoiled brat through half of the play. Sometimes, you had to wonder if she was on Speed. Christine was the Captain Jack Sparrow of the entire play. Show-stopping and side-splittingly good.

I'm so happy that I got to go. Even though the cast will most likely be different (shame), I'd love to go again. I would have really liked to see Idina Menzel reprise her role as the original Elphaba on Broadway. Oh well.

Wicked is playing in Boston from 09.12.07 -- 11.09.07. I suggest you do whatever it takes to see it. You can get tickets on the Boston Opera House website or Ticket Master.

Note: I was made aware of this a year or two ago. If you're a student, you can present your student ID an hour before whatever show you want to see starts and get in for $25. Your seats might not be great, BUT STOP YOUR BITCHING BECAUSE YOU'RE SEEING THE PLAY.