Thursday, January 31, 2013

A Fond Farewell: The Best Fake Stuff "30 Rock" Ever Created For Us All

This is how I feel about 30 Rock ending. Blerg on you Tina Fey.

Tonight, we say goodbye to one of the funniest shows on TV. If only there was a perfect Joni Mitchell song to commemorate this event. While I shall drown my sorrows tonight in night cheese and a Nancy Drew (it's a Hardy Boy for men, natch), check out some of the greatest creations Liz Lemon and the gang have ever given us, from bar mitzvahs for werewolves to Meat Cat.

Fake Songs: 

Muffin Top- Jenna Maroney's best song ever. She just wants to dance people. 

Werewolf Bar Mitzvah- Tracy's big hit that helped him receive the key to the city of Gary, Indiana

Jenna, "unwindulaxing"

Catching Crabs in Paradise- Jenna's hit that becomes the theme song for the followers of "Unwindulax"- people in Florida whose election votes can't be predicted. 

Balls- A song Jenna made over a summer hiatus... and yes, it just repeats "balls" over and over again.

Night Cheese- Liz Lemon eats cheese at night. It's pretty self-explanatory but it's also completely perfect. 

I'm A Star- Sure it's not a full song but who cares? It'll be your anthem after you hear it. 

Fake Companies/Events: 

Bottoms-Up Day- The day where GE senior level officials do the work of the lowest paid/ranked GE employee for one whole day. It's a real nightmare

Ludachristmas- The TGS Christmas Party. It can get crazy. As Tracy would say, he "likes it so much, he wants to take behind a middle school and get it pregnant." 

Classic Liz, choosing food over a man. This is so not a romantic comedy.

Sandwich Day- "You don't know Sandwich Day? Why it's the best day of the year!" Once a year, the TGS teamsters bring everyone sandwiches from a secret location. But make sure you don't take Liz's sandwich because she'll "cut you up so bad you'll have a chin."

Anna Howard Shaw Day- Otherwise known as Anti-Valentine's Day for bitter, old, single women. 

Kidney Now- Jack's basically fake charity concert to raise money for his real father's kidney. Adam Levine, Mary J. Blige & Elvis Costello (aka international art thief Declan McManus) are all blackmailed into participating. 

Kabletown- The new owner of NBC. (DEFINITELY not Comcast)

Merkins for Hope- The charity Jenna decides to give her chopped off hair to (because Locks for Love won't accept her way too damaged tousles) 

Operation Righteous Cowboy Lightning- Jack's idea of pre-taping a charity benefit show. Sounds like a good idea right? Not so much because the next disaster happens on the island of Mago which is owned by Mel Gibson. But because it's Jack, somehow the idea still works unlike....

Fireworks- Jack's idea to set off a giant fireworks show in the middle of Rockefeller Plaza. It was not a success. 

Fake Shows/Movies/Games: 

Bitch Hunter- NBC's very popular show starring Will Ferrell as Shane Hunter, a man who hunts women with a gun. Because of controversy and complaints from all those feminists, NBC had to create....

"Who Farted?" One of the many "classy" sketches on TGS

The Girlie Show- What Liz Lemon's show was called BEFORE Tracy Jordan came aboard. It's much better now. 

Black Fraiser- The show Toofer used to write for at BET before getting the Girlie Show gig. Just as Fraiser-y and nothing black about it. 

Dealbreakers Talk Show- Liz Lemon's talk show that was never even able to film its first episode because Lemon went "Jenna" on everyone (watch the whole episode, it's amazing).

Rural Juror & Urban Fervor- The first is an indie film (with a difficult to pronounce name) starring Jenna and the second is the sequel written by Kevin Grisham (brother of John Grisham... so you know it's good?).

Jackie Jormp Jomp- Jack's Janis Joplin inspired biopic that could not obtain rights to any of Joplin's songs and thus had to sing versions of each hit with the words changed (for example: Chunk of my Lung over Piece of my Heart). Starring Jenna Maroney as Jackie Jormp Jomp. 

Los Amantes Clandestinos- The show featuring the Generalissimo, a villain who looks exactly like Jack. Jack's ex-girlfriend Elisa had a grandmother who did not approve of Jack because of this resemblance. 

See? Super creepy.

Milf Island- NBC's most famous reality show... exactly as it sounds... and just as creepy. 

Some of the best Tracy Jordan movies: Fat Bitch, Honky Grandma Be Trippin', A Blaffair To Rememblack, Who Dat Ninja, Black Cop/White Cop, Jefferson (Which Tracy wrote, produced, stars in and directed), Hard To Watch: Based on the Book "Stone Cold Bummer" By Manipulate (For which Tracy won an Oscar surprisingly enough), The Chunks 2: A Very Chunky Christmas

Child Hell Fight- a show that will "inoventually"happen

Queen of Jordan- an awesome reality show starring Tracy Jordan's wife, Angie with the best cast ever. 

Fake Food/Food-Related Items: 

One of Liz's many many crazy dreams. 

Cheesy Blasters (and Meat Cat, the face of CheesyB)

Adultaraisin- Tracy Jordan's Ben and Jerry's ice cream flavor. 

Funcooker- a portable microwave that unfortunately shares its name with Tracy's butt. 

Sabor de Soledad- a cheeto-like chip that causes you to think you're having a baby. (definitely glad these aren't real) 

The only words that can truly describe my annoyance for no more "30 Rock" were coined by Liz herself: "BLERG!" & "NERDS!" We'll miss you TGS Cast and Crew (and Jack). You're pretty awes. Everyone should watch the SERIES finale of "30 Rock tonight at 8 p.m. As Tina Fey said herself: TAPE THE BIG BANG THEORY FOR ONCE PEOPLE.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Oscar Nominations (And My Snap Judgments)

Check 'em out!

Best Picture (Great List but sadly no Moonrise Kingdom)

Beasts of the Southern Wild
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty
Les Miserables
Life of Pi
Django Unchained

Best Actor (No surprise here)

Daniel Day-Lewis- Lincoln
Hugh Jackman- Les Miserables
Bradley Cooper- Silver Linings Playbook
Denzel Washington- Flight
Joaquin Phoenix- The Master

Best Actress (Good surprises with Wallis and Riva)

Jennifer Lawrence- The Silver Linings Playbook
Emmanuel Riva- Amour
Quvenzhane Wallis- Beasts of the Southern Wild
Jessica Chastain- Zero Dark Thirty
Naomi Watts- The Impossible

Best Supporting Actor (Arkin sneaks in, not a bad thing)

Christoph Waltz- Django Unchained
Phillip Seymour Hoffman- The Master
Robert De Niro- Silver Linings Playbook
Alan Arkin- Argo
Tommy Lee Jones- Lincoln

Best Supporting Actress (Jacki Weaver sneaks in, again not a bad surprise)

Sally Field- Lincoln
Anne Hathaway- Les Miserables
Jacki Weaver- Silver Linings Playbook
Helen Hunt- The Sessions
Amy Adams- The Master

Best Original Song (Congrats to Seth MacFarlane & Adele!!)

Before My Time- Chasing Ice
Pi's Lullaby- Life of Pi
Suddenly- Les Miserables
Everybody Needs a Best Friend- Ted
Skyfall- Skyfall

Best Original Score (Interesting addition of Newman here, sad to see Johnny Greenwood get snubbed again)

Dario Marianelli- Anna Karenina
Alexandre Desplat- Argo
Mychael Danna- Life of Pi
John Williams- Lincoln
Thomas Newman- Skyfall

Animated Film (Pirates! beats Rise of the Guardians)

Wreck-It Ralph
Pirates! Band of Misfits

Foreign Film

Amour- Austria
No- Chile
War Witch- Canada
A Royal Affair- Denmark
Kontikki- Norway

Adapted Screenplay

Ben Zeitlin- Beasts of the Southern Wild
Chris Terrio- Argo
Tony Kushner- Lincoln
David O. Russell- Silver Linings Playbook
David Magee- Life of Pi

Original Screenplay (Biggest snub in my opinion- No Rian Johnson for Looper)

John Gatins- Flight
Mark Boal- Zero Dark Thirty
Quentin Tarantino- Django Unchained
Michael Haneke- Amour
Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola- Moonrise Kingdom


David O. Russell- Silver Linings Playbook
Ang Lee- Life of Pi
Steven Spielberg- Lincoln
Michael Haneke- Amour
Ben Zeitlin- Beasts of the Southern Wild

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Updated: Oscar Predictions Assessment- AKA What I Got Wrong

Well as per usual, the Oscar nominations were as most reporters call a "mixed bag." I call it a clusterf*** of emotions. Some nods were obvious (as in Lincoln getting nominated for literally everything) and some were completely infuriating (let's get to that). Excuse any written outburst you see, it's all still a bit tender.

Best Picture:
1. Zero Dark Thirty
2.  Lincoln
3. Les Misérables
4. Argo
5. Beasts of the Southern Wild
6. Silver Linings Playbook
7. Life of Pi
8. Django Unchained
9. Moonrise Kingdom
10. Amour

The Academy went with 9 again this year which is no real surprise. And the list is pretty much the most predictable list ever created. Some pundits thought Skyfall might make it at the last second but as much as I enjoyed that film, there was no way a Bond movie/big budget flick like that would register with the Academy. Have we all forgotten the tough snub for The Dark Knight? And that was a much better film.

Best Director:
1. Kathryn Bigelow: Zero Dark Thirty David O. Russell: Silver Linings Playbook
2. Steven Spielberg: Lincoln
3. Ben Affleck: Argo Michael Haneke- Amour
4. Tom Hooper: Les Miserables Ben Zeitlin- Beasts of the Southern Wild
5. Ang Lee: Life of Pi

WOW. I don't know where to start. Oh wait, yes I do. HUGE snubs for Kathryn Bigelow and Ben Affleck. I know, I know, Bigelow has won it before. Fine. But what does Affleck have to do to get a Director nod? I call conspiracy here!

On a positive note: Glad to see David O. Russell score a nom for Silver Linings Playbook. Great director, great movie.

Best Actor: 
1. Daniel Day-Lewis: Lincoln
2. Bradley Cooper: Silver Linings Playbook
3. Joaquin Phoenix: The Master
4. Hugh Jackman: Les Miserables
5. Denzel Washington: Flight

5 for 5! Awesome but take too much credit. This one was obvious. Even the Joaquin Phoenix "surprise".

Best Actress: 
1. Jessica Chastain: Zero Dark Thirty
2. Jennifer Lawrence: Silver Linings Playbook
3. Emmanuelle Riva: Amour
4. Rachel Weisz: The Deep Blue Sea Quvenzhane Wallis- Beasts of the Southern Wild
5. Naomi Watts: The Impossible

I'm actually glad to be wrong in snubbing Wallis on my list. That little girl was incredible in Beasts of the Souther Wild. I feel like a complete failure. What did I achieve at 9 years old? I could read at a 12-year-old level. That's about it.

Best Supporting Actor:
1. Alan Arkin: Argo
2. Robert De Niro: Silver Linings Playbook
3. Phillip Seymour Hoffman: The Master
4. Tommy Lee Jones: Lincoln
5. Christoph Waltz: Django Unchained

Another 5 of 5 for another fairly obvious field.

Best Supporting Actress: 
1. Anne Hathaway: Les Miserables
2. Amy Adams: The Master
3. Sally Field: Lincoln
4. Helen Hunt: The Sessions
5. Ann Dowd: Compliance Jacki Weaver- Silver Linings Playbook

I'm trading in one surprise nomination for another. Glad to see such a great cast all get nods here. That's not only a testament to them but to David O. Russell for writing a great script and directing his cast to glory.

Best Original Screenplay: 
1. Mark Boal: Zero Dark Thirty
2. Paul Thomas Anderson: The Master Michael Haneke: Amour
3. Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola: Moonrise Kingdom
4. Quentin Tarantino: Django Unchained
5. Rian Johnson: Looper John Gatins: Flight

Michael Haneke's nomination is no real surprise but I was really hoping the Academy would take a leap and give some recognition to the brilliant Looper script by Johnson. It was definitely one of the most inventive movies of the year and it gets nothing. This is a real disappointment.

Best Adapted Screenplay: 
1. Chris Terrio: Argo
2. Tony Kushner: Lincoln
3. Stephen Chbosky: Perks of Being a Wallflower David Magee: Life of Pi
4. David O. Russell: Silver Linings Playbook
5. Lucy Alibar & Ben Zeitlin: Beasts of the Southern Wild

Another obvious alternative here. Chbosky was a bit of an uncertainty since the movie wasn't a huge success. Magee did a commendable job adapting subject matter that could be really tough for the screen.

Best Animated Feature:
1. Wreck-It Ralph
2. Brave
3. Paranorman
4. Frankenweenie
*ADDITION* 5. Pirates! Band of Misfits

Wasn't sure if the Academy would go for a full 5 here. But glad they went with the absurd yet adorable Pirates! over Rise of the Guardians.

Best Original Score: 
1. Dan Romer & Ben Zeitlin: Beasts of the Southern Wild
2. Johnny Greenwood: The Master Thomas Newman: Skyfall
3. Mychael Danna: Life of Pi
4. John Williams: Lincoln
5. Alexandre Desplat: Argo

Wow. The Academy either really doesn't like Paul Thomas Anderson movies or just really hates Radiohead. Poor Johnny Greenwood. I personally love his movie scores.

The Oscars will air on February 24th. And if the Oscar nominations were any prediction for the actual event, Seth MacFarlane will do just fine. As long as he brings some of his irreverent Family Guy humor (with a little extra class), that'll go Pig. That'll do.

Anyone else have any big beefs with the Academy? Do you agree that the Academy would nominate Steven Spielberg for awards even if he remade Pootie Tang? Are you one of the weirdos who's upset that Matthew McConaughy didn't get nominated for basically just taking off his shirt (as per usual) and terribly singing a song in Magic Mike? Seriously was that a serious bid for a nomination? Anyway, explain in the comments section!! Can't wait to be more annoyed by the eventual winners with all of you!