A place for anything and everything that comes to mind.

Monday, February 28, 2011


If you went to sleep as soon as the Oscars were over, you missed something big...something HUGE: Tom Hanks next Oscar winning role as himself, the Pag Dad.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Katharine the Great

Gorgeous. Witty. Intelligent. Best voice ever. Heckuva sportie. Connecticut's most prized citizen.

In my opinion, she's the greatest actress that's ever lived. Oscar would agree. The great Katharine Hepburn was nominated for 12 Academy Awards and took home four* for: 1933's Morning Glory, 1967's Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?, 1968's The Lion in Winter, and 1981's On Golden Pond. On Golden Pond was the first film I ever saw with this amazing lady, I was five, and I cried. Oh, sure, you might say. A five-year-old will cry at anything. I actually cried because I was moved beyond words as she got down on the ground with her dying husband, telling him how much she loved him. I didn't know exactly why I was crying all of a sudden, but I knew I was feeling her sadness at the thought of him leaving her after all the years they had spent together. It was then I fell in love with movies...and her. The fact that these moving pictures contained stories and characters that became real and can make you celebrate, rejoice, and cry with them.

Meryl Streep is a close second to the Hepburn of the Katharine variety, and she's also fantastically talented. I've really come to appreciate Streep as of late. She'll never be as great as Kate, one will.

*Five, you count the Supporting Actress Oscar Cate Blanchett got for playing her in 2004's The Aviator.

To Live & Die by the Red Carpet

I love everything about the Oscars: the glitz, the glamor, the witty pitter patter before each statue is handed out, the celebration of moving pictures that truly are moving, and of course, the red carpet fasion. While I'll be talking about the winners the next day around the water cooler (or copier machine, in my case), many just focus on who wore what and who looked, well...terrible.

Yahoo! has tried to rival VF's Hollywood catalog by putting together some of the worst Oscar fashion atrocities in recent years. There are some humdingers available for your perusal, but my favorite fashion mishap is at left. Nothing says 1989 like a sweet pair of velvet biker shorts.

Day 26

TCM's 31 Days of Oscar is nearing its end, and it's celebrating the eve of Oscar in a big way. Catch the three Oscar sweepers on this Saturday, February 26. Click HERE for the times and rundown. You can start your day off with some classic remakes, many consider better than the originals (too bad you can't say that more these days, huh, Hollywood?). After the big three, stay tuned for some real-life, bad-A women portrayed by Jessica Lange and Meryl Streep. Not a bad day before the big day.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Gettin' Revved Up

Here are a few Oscar sites to help you along your way this week before the big shoo:
Vanity Fair 2011 Hollywood Portfolio catches the best of the best for the 17th year in a row. I've only missed out on one in the past 17 years, and I'm still mad. If you don't want to shell out the cash, check out the gorgeous snapshots here.

Turner Classic Movies celebrates the Academy Awards every year with their 31 Days of Oscar. See the best of the best, unedited, and commercial free. TCM is the best movie channel on cable, premium or no.

The Official Oscar site offers you a ballot for your party, daily Oscar trivia, plus those splashy commercials starring this year's hosts.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences offers insight into the academy, a list of the past winners, and gives the lowdown on all that other "stuff" (for example, that film preservation that Scorsese is always on about) the AMPAS does, besides that big, flashy show once a year.

Monday, February 21, 2011

How to Win Oscar

It's often been said that truth is better than fiction, and smart actors live by this adage. You're almost guaranteed to bring home a golden boy if you're man/woman enough to walk in someone else's shoes. From Sean Penn to Helen Mirren to last year's golden girl, Sandra Bullock: if you want some Oscar gold, go for the real deal. Below you'll find a short list (from the 80's to the present) of some of my favorite acting greats who've nabbed Oscar by getting real.

Best Actress:

  • Sissy Spacek as Loretta Lynn
  • Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf
  • Resse Witherspoon as June Carter Cash
  • Helen Mirren as Queen Elizabeth II
  • Marion Cotillard as Edith Piaf
  • Sandra Bullock as Leigh Anne Tuohy
Best Actor:

  • Ben Kingsley as Gandhi
  • F. Murray Abraham as Antonio Salieri
  • Jeremy Irons as Klaus von Bulow
  • Philip Seymour Hoffman as Truman Capote
  • Forest Whittaker as Idi Amin
  • Sean Penn as Harvey Milk
  • Colin Firth as King George VI (c''s a lock)

There are always exceptions to rules, even in the land of Oscar. Denzel Washington, nominated for playing Malcolm X, in Spike Lee's fierce and fiery X, was denied Oscar in 1992. 8-time nominee, and first time winner, Al Pacino, took home the coveted statue that evening for his portrayal of suicidal ex-Marine, Col. Frank Slade in Scent of a Woman. (Great tango scene, by the way.)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sweeping Oscar

Few have done it; many have tried. You might think there have been many Oscar sweeps. Surely such cinematic greats as Gone with the Wind, Citizen Kane, West Side Story, Gandhi, and American Beauty have swept the Oscars. Nay, my friends, nay. Only three have accomplished this fete in Oscars' 80+ years.

Let's rewind a bit. What constitutes a sweep? A film must take home the little gold man for the five major Oscar categories: Best Film, Director, Actor, Actress, and Screenplay. The three cinematic gems that have accomplished this are as follows:

1934's love story, It Happened One Night. Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert sizzled with chemistry in this Frank Capra classic.

1975's study of sanity, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Milos Forman brought big guns, Jack Nicholson and Louise Fletcher, to the screen in this adaptation of Ken Kesey's novel of a psych ward where the inmates strive to take over. You'll never look at a nurse's whites the same way again after watching Louise Fletcher's calm and eerie portrayal of Nurse Ratched.

1991's psychological thriller, Silence of the Lambs. This one gave us a new, classic recipe for fava beans and chianti, Jodie Foster her second golden gentleman, and Sir Anthony Hopkins a much-deserved first.

An honorary sweep goes to the final installment of already classic nerd trilogy, Lord of the Rings. The Return of the King was nominated for 11 Oscars in 2003, and it took home every one. However, none of the fine actors (specifically, Sean Astin) were recognized for their work.

There's no chance of a true sweep this year, but tune in on Sunday, February 27, to see if The King's Speech can do a pseudo-sweep with a Supporting Actress Oscar going to the ever eccentric Helena Bonham-Carter. It's a long shot, but could happen...especially after their sweep at the BAFTAs.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Are You Ready???

8 days and counting until the 83rd Academy Awards! Have you made your Oscar picks? Do you have your annual Hollywood issue of Vanity Fair to drool over until the Red Carpet? How do you feel about the big star co-hosts? Did you place a bet AGAINST Colin Firth winning for Best Actor?...Cause if you did, you won't be rewarded for gambling big.

Only 8 days left to get ready, so get those ballots printed, invite some chums over, and get some fondue pots out for some classy eats...IT'S OSCAR TIME!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Getting Reacquainted with Old Friends

It's wonderful having a newborn. So many things to be grateful and excited about: first smiles, lil giggles, cute outfits with itty bitty feets attached, and midnight feedings. Wait. What did I just say? Midnight feedings are fun? Why, YES, they ARE.

Not only did I manage to watch every episode of Gilmore Girls in 7 weeks, finding new friends to know and love, I've also been able to revisit an oft overlooked spin-off series, Angel. Sure everyone always remembers Buffy, but what about a Angel (sic)? The die-hards remember, but not the everyday Joe of TV viewership. Season 3 has to be one of the most spectacular, well put together seasons of television of all time. I had hesitations going into Season 4, because how could it be anywhere as good? Well, it certainly comes very close. And, while Season 5 has more stand-alone episodes than a final season should, it's still bloody brilliant (pun INtended).

Maybe you could care less about a show six years dead, maybe you could care less about Jossy Whedon and his vampire universe, but seriously, folks, this is some fine television. Darkly comedic, tragically romantic, and genuinely entertaining. (Oh, and the cast's not too hard on the eyes, either. Seriously, everyone of 'em. Kinda disgusting.) Do yourself a favor and check out...and forgive me for not reporting on this sooner. :)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

And, the Oscar Goes To...

Meryl Streep for her role as former UK PM, Margaret Thatcher. What's that, you say? You don't remember seeing her on an Oscar ballot? Well, that's because she'll be receiving it at next year's big show. Seriously, people. If you're Meryl Streep and a script for a Maggie Thatcher role comes across your table, you take it, cause you know some Oscar gold is in your future. Good luck, Ms. Streep, and start getting that acceptance speech ready now.