Monthly Archives: February 2015

Happy Monday!

The Oscars are right when they’re right and they’re wrong when they’re wrong.

While it’s a painfully obvious observation, it’s true. After watching our favorite movies throughout the year, movie fans become invested in a particular story, actor or actress, director, writer, composer, etc. When the awards shows arrive with its unrivaled opulence, the quiet roar of cheering begins in millions of homes around the world. For countless and valid reasons, we hope, hope and hope that that one movie or collection of people win. It makes sense, they unequivocally deserve it for the right reasons. A celebration of great cinematic achievement and connection to a moving picture awaits.

Then, the unthinkable happens.

No, not John Travolta. However, he did show up on stage with Idina Menzel. She introduced Travolta ever-so-perfectly as “Glom Gazingo.” That’s what we call a frozen burn!

The unthinkable happens when the wrong person is awarded the golden statue or the right person wasn’t even nominated. Or, worse yet, how about when Harold Ramis and Joan Rivers were shamefully absent from the “In Memoriam” tribute.

Not cool Academy, not cool.

Then, there are the mute-worthy political speeches and awkward moments. It is Hollywood, after all. Thankfully, host Neil Patrick Harris provided some funny comic relief throughout the 3 1/2 hour extravaganza. Conversely, there are performances and speeches that move us and certain winners who are seen as a validation of what’s right with the movie world. At a minimum, the Oscars provides its billion-plus viewers with a few heartwarming moments, as last night’s ceremony did.

This live performance was one of the things that, by everyone’s accounts, went 100% right last night:

What would have been more awesome? If The Lego Movie would have been nominated for a lot of Oscars in big categories, along with this amazingly original science-fiction space epic…

Living in an Odd Van Down by the Comic Book Store in Malibu

Spoiler Alert: Information from last night’s CBS lineup (The Big Bang Theory, The Odd Couple & Two and a Half Men) and The Goldbergs are revealed below

From sunrise to sunset, yesterday was crazy.

First, battling a cold completely confused my mind, which resulted in a non-Goldbergs blog post. Have no fear though, that’s partly what today is for.

Erica wanted vehicular freedom from gas tank-obsessed Murray, so she manipulated Barry’s A-Team singing sweet spot that results in the best/worst van purchase of all-time. Meanwhile, Adam sought to rid himself of being known as “the nice guy.” This brought out Adam’s inner Don Rickles and Andrew Dice Clay, to the obvious anger from his family/comedic targets, to amplify his rep as the class clown. Adam’s journey to discovering his identity in middle school was an all too real portrayal. We try so hard to fit in and to be the person everybody else wants us to be. It’s a terribly awkward, embarrassing and frustrating moment in our lives.

In middle school, all we wanted and needed was for someone to be nice…

As for Erica and Barry becoming known as “van people” in their neighborhood (including their principal), all it took was delicious secret corn, the B-Team (for Barry) gas tank emptying and two genetically stubborn people conversing (Erica and Murray) to realize living in a van was not an ideal situation. Plus, the ’80s classic, “The Way It Is” by Bruce Hornsby & The Range helped significantly.

It’s a wonderful thing to have such a nice, funny family on television.

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Second, CBS owned last night’s sitcom battle. As in completely and entirely. The evening began with an emotional Big Bang Theory that finally dealt with the real life death of the wildly funny Carol Ann Susi/Mrs. Wolowitz. It coincided with the re-opening of Stuart’s comic book store with a sharper look, including some familiar furniture as pointed out by Howard. Plus, the phrase “let it go” got a genuinely welcomed resurgence back into our psyches thanks to Penny (inside joke for viewers of the episode).

Following the #1 sitcom on television was the premiere of CBS’s next great sitcom, The Odd Couple. Written as a modern revival to the ’70s comedy, it stars Matthew Perry (Oscar Madison) and Thomas Lennon (Felix Unger) as, well, an odd couple of roommates. For a pilot, it was fantastic! The writing and on-screen chemistry started slowly, as expected. But, by the end, the characters and writers revealed a promising (and hilarious) spark that will build into a roaring good fire of laughs. Like most great sitcoms, it will take a season or two to find its rhythm and pulse of its characters and story. Recall the necessary patience and development it took Seinfeld, Frasier, That ’70s Show and Friends to find its genius a few seasons in. The Odd Couple has an awesome cast and as they continue to fall into their respective roles more naturally as time goes on, this show will prove to be really special. Matthew Perry and Thomas Lennon have finally found their successful follow-up roles to their iconic television characters of yesteryear.

And then there were these, “men, men, men, manly men, who hoo who would show up?”

Following an unlikely 12-year run on CBS, Chuck Lorre’s raunchy, addictive and tumultuous sitcom came to an end last night. Having been at the taping for a couple scenes in the series finale two weeks ago today, which included Rose revealing Charlie was alive in the Malibu living room with Alan, Evelyn and Walden and Jake’s surprise return, it was still a tightly-held secret if Charlie Sheen would actually return. As curious viewers discovered, Charlie made a cameo as a Warner Bros. cartoon and, courtesy of a convincing stand-in from behind, in the must-see final scene. The finale had plenty of laughs, especially with funny pans and one-liners to studio cameras about the show and a series recap with guest officer ArnoldĀ  Schwarzenegger interviewing Alan and Walden as part of their pursuit to find the raging and “Silence of the Lambs-escapee” Charlie from Rose’s Sherman Oaks dungeon.

It was sad to see the show give its final curtain call, but it was time. Given the circumstances with Charlie Sheen and Angus T. Jones, Two and a Half Men could only continue for so long. One of the cool things about seeing a show taping live is learning inside information. In honor of the show’s success, and the fact it managed to be the longest running sitcom in television history, we learned that night that Warner Bros. would be renaming Stage 26, “The Two and a Half Men Stage.”

That’s winning.

As is this:

(CBS)

(CBS)

Winter’s Sun

Reports are circulating that the controversial governing body FIFA will solidify its controversial decision to reward the Middle Eastern country of Qatar with the 2022 World Cup. The grandest prize in soccer/world football will all but certainly be played during November and December due to extreme heat in the nation’s summer months.

So, what’s the problem everybody? (and yes Sheldon Cooper, that’s sarcasm)

With the exception of Major League Soccer (MLS), virtually every major soccer league in the world competes during the winter months listed above. This includes a heavy majority (nearly all) of World Cup participants and its biggest global stars. It unnaturally interrupts their seasons and the critical evolutionary stage for team chemistry and individual development in training camps and league competitions, as well as the UEFA Champions League. Listing just a few big negatives with Qatar hosting the 2022 World Cup in its winter months starts with why?

That’s easy: money. Literally. Next.

The nation has no rich soccer history or traditions (ironic, right?), the summer heat is unbearably hot and the process for obtaining hosting rights was reported to be blatantly corrupt. Soccer-centric countries like Belgium & the Netherlands were passed on, including the undeniably enthusiastic up-and-comer United States of America. Remember, the USA hosted the 1994 World Cup and did a great job. Consequentially, the nation and its people have been inspired by the beautiful game ever since. It’s domestic league MLS was launched in 1996 and is about to enter its 20th season.

When you think of world-class soccer, Russia and Qatar instantly comes to mind, right? FIFA certainly hopes so because those are where the next two World Cups will be played. There are some countries where the World Cup should not be awarded. Whether it’s unsatisfactory infrastructure and venues, safety, entertainment for ticket buyers, lack of soccer culture and identity, corruption, safety, weather and overall atmosphere. There’s also the small fact that some nations haven’t earned this exclusive right to host a World Cup. Bear this in mind: the Netherlands finished 3rd and 2nd in the past two World Cups, yet they were been denied hosting rights for 2018 and the foreseeable future. South Korea and Germany (speaking from experience for Germany) did an excellent job hosting in 2002 and 2006. Going to games and being in that atmosphere in Germany was unforgettably amazing! It was world-class. In South Africa and Brazil in 2010 and 2014, there were a range of complaints and concerns. Even though Brazil is the most famous soccer country in the world, there were still serious questions that needed answering beforehand.

Recent news surrounding the 2022 World Cup occurring during Qatar’s winter months won’t quell speculation of FIFA’s scandalous decision-making DNA. In fact, it will only further intensify this corrupt reputation, maintaining the stigma that this group has a selling price for its services and, most devastatingly, its values.

Apologies. I meant “values.”

Mr. Langdon’s Fiery Cinematic Return

(The Telegraph)

(The Telegraph)

Dan Brown’s literary thrill ride “Inferno” has officially announced the key members of its cast for the big screen adaptation set for release during October in 2016. According to Columbia Pictures, Tom Hanks (Robert Langdon), director Ron Howard and producer Brian Grazer will be working with the following actors and actresses:
  • Felicity Jones (Dr. Sienna Brooks)
  • Irrfan Khan (The Provost)
  • Omar Sy (Christoph Bruder)
  • Sidse Babett (Dr. Elizabeth Sinskey)

Fans of Dan Brown (and “Inferno” in particular) are no doubt excited that details have and are being finalized for this amazing story’s Hollywood treatment. Along with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, next year is lining up to be well worth the wait.

2016 Fashion Prediction: Tweed jackets and Mickey Mouse watches will be in.