The Academy Awards, 2014

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GOOOOOOOOOOOOOD EVENINNNNNNNG VIETTTTTBLOGGGGGG!!1!!1!

In the immortal words of Staind, it’s been awhile! Three years, in fact. Time flies when you’re working a lot and stressed out and busy with other stuff having fun! But, hey, I’m here now, blogging the Oscars, just like you wanted. You can all stop stop begging and pleading and refreshing your browser over and over OK? I mean, I know the last thing I should be doing is complaining about the devotion of my legions of fans, but to be perfectly frank, it was starting to get a little desperate.

JKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJKJK you guyz! No one cares about this at all!

Of course, Johanna and I will be doing one of our winner-picking competitions. It’s been a long time since we’ve done one of these for the blog, and it’s been really confusing for us. How are we supposed to know who is winning in our relationship if we don’t have award show winner-picking competitions to tell us, you know???

Ellen’s hosting right? That’s all right, I guess. She’s affable and mildly charming. Ellen is to hosting as 2013 was to movies, I think. Good, not great. I liked a lot of what I saw this year, but didn’t really love anything. But who cares, right? It’s the Oscars! Glitz! Glamour! Gowns! Flubs! Snubs! Subs! This message brought to you by Subway. Eat Fresh! Eat Fresh is a registered trademark of the Subway Sandwich Conglomeration.

Johanna has made us both a Gin Fizz for the occasion. Seems very appropriate for this old timey Hollywood event. “I was thinking about calling it the ‘American Fizzle’.” she said sheepishly. Works for me! Stop being sheepish, Johanna! Own your puns!

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OK, let’s get started, gang! While I go google how to spell McConaughey, you guys watch the 2013 version of one of my favorite internet time-wasters, Cinescape. Hats off to Matt Shapiro, the guy who puts these together every year.

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WHICH ONE KING SHOULD HAVE SO MUCH POWER

Only one can win!

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The Cinescape, 2011

So every year, for the past six years, this guy Matt Shapiro has put together great montages of clips from the year’s movies.  And seriously, great job, Matt!  These are really amazing!  This must have been tons of work!  Bravo!  Kudos!

But man oh man as I watched this I couldn’t help but wishing he had a better crop of movies this year to montagify.  Wow were there not a whole lot of great or good movies this year!  I mean, right?!  Remember how last year we had like The Social Network and Inception and True Grit and everything??  And this year we have, like…uh, Moneyball?  I liked Moneyball, right?  Yikes!

Hopefully next year will be better.  For now, I’m going to go watch the montage from 2010. And also download the Deadmau5 song that was in the 2011 montage.

The MTV Movie Awards, 2011

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OK, OK, I know what you’re thinking.  When I did last year’s post on the MTV Movie Awards I said that it would be my last.  It wasn’t the MOST useless award show I blogged about (that honor goes to the Daytime Emmys), but it definitely felt like a waste of time.  But you know what?  Apparently my time isn’t all that valuable, because here we are again.

As usual, my wife Johanna is mixing us a themed cocktail.  Tonight she’s going with a somewhat hastily thrown together offshoot of the cosmopolitan.  Some vodka, cranberry juice, and since we don’t have any orange liqueur and we live in North Carolina where the state-run liquor stores are closed on Sundays, orange juice.  I KNOW, I KNOW, it’s not really a cosmopolitan, but in the wise words of Adam Sandler’s screenwriter, “Just go with it!” [DRINK UPDATE ALERT!  I was later informed that, in addition to the previously listed ingredients, the drink contains blueberry-pomegranate juice, lime juice, and seltzer.  Fancy!]

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She chose this because it’s red, like blood, which is perfect because TWILIGHT!!!1!!!!11!  Speaking of, did you guys see that Vanity Fair article about Robert Pattinson and how he is conflicted about his fame and his crazy fans and he can’t go to a bar without bringing in the police for crowd control and basically seems really depressed, but not in a cool goth vampire way, just in a sad human being way?  Anywayzzz, Johanna named the drink the “Bloody Bella.”

Also as usual, we’ll be competing in a winner-picking competition.  I’m pretty sure these awards are based entirely on online fan voting, which is always fun.  Particularly when the people voting are in a completely different demographic than I am.  I miss being in the 18-24 demo so much!  It was a lot of fun.  To paraphrase Kanye West, no one demo should have so much power.  Particularly when it’s such a stupid demo.  Remember how stupid we were?  Yikes.

Categories and winners will be in bold.  I’d like to ask you all to send your prayers and goodwill out into the world for Johanna, because she really needs the win.  I’m worried she’s going to lose interest; she’s already threatening to boycott the ESPYs.  The ESPYs!  Can you imagine?

All right, let’s go!  Take it away, Jason Sudeikis!  I’ll just be sitting over here mentally preparing myself to hear my wife talk all night about how much of a crush she has on the host.

9:00 – MTV starts off on the wrong foot with me with the reminder that Chelsea Handler hosted the VMAs.  You’re better than this, MTV!  Oh, wait, no you’re not.  I think I’ll zone out for this opening bit.

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9:05 – Not as good as last year, MTV Movie Awards!  I like you, Jason, but you’re no Aziz.

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Also, no one in this audience cares enough about Arnold Schwarzenegger’s infidelity to warrant one joke, let alone six of them or whatever you just did.

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The Academy Awards, 2011

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OMGOMGOMGOMGOMG you guys it’s the Oscars!  We can finally stop pretending to care about all these other shows, because the Oscars are here!

Seriously though, I’ve made a lot of jokes about award shows, but I clearly enjoy them.  Over the past couple of years, however, I’ve realized that this is the only one that takes its job at all seriously.  I mean, the only other award show that even seems like it is moderately trying is the Emmys, and even then approximately two nominees in every category are totally ridiculous.  But nine out of the ten nominees for Best Picture here are really good movies.  And the tenth isn’t really all that bad (Just so you know, the odd man out here is The Kids Are All Right, which was, at best, all right.).  This is a show that respects itself!  And for that, I respect it.

And yes, you did not misread me; I have opinions on all ten Best Picture nominees.  Because I saw ALL TEN OF THEM.  I did my homework!  This is, I’m pretty sure, the first time I have seen all of the Best Picture nominees before the Oscars.  And I am therefore full of opinions on ALL TEN OF THEM.   This should be fun.

Detracting from the fun is the fact that a lot of these categories seem preordained.  As always, my wife Johanna and I will be competing in a winner-picking competition here, and I’m worried that we’ll end up in a tie like we did with the Golden Globes. One can only hope that the costume/sound/editing categories will allow one of us to differentiate ourselves.

Johanna is, as ever, in charge of drinks.  She’s got like a thousand things going on right now, so I’m not going to make her try to come up with something crazy.  I think we’re just going to go with gin and tonics, because it’s a classy drink for a classy evening.  We’ll be upping the classiness to astronomical levels by referring to them as “The Meryl Streep.”  Also, it was 78 degrees outside today!  Warm weather drink alert, whattttt!

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How are we feeling about Anne Hathaway and James Franco as hosts?  I think they could be fun.  Or at least not boring.  Anne Hathaway is musical and funny and super hot, right?  And James Franco is also all of those things, except maybe musical.  I’ve never heard him sing, I don’t think.

So are we ready for this?  Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.  Let’s ease in here, folks.  As always, winners and categories and score and such in bold.

8:31 Johanna is still agonizing over her picks as the obligatory “hosts romp through the movies of the year” montage begins.  These are always enjoyable.  I am not being sarcastic.

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Ridiculous DVDs

Ridiculous DVDs

Were you to walk into the living room of my apartment, it’s likely that one of the first things to draw your eye would be the massive, seven-foot-tall DVD shelf.  I’ve always been vaguely uncomfortable with it.  Having that many DVDs on display and out in the open like that has always seemed a bit tacky.  Besides, as we all get more comfortable with digital media and hard copies of things become sort of unnecessary, having as large of a DVD library as my wife and I do is almost embarrassing.

Were you to actually approach the shelf, however, things would really start to get embarrassing for me.  Impulse purchases and rash decisions abound.  There is nearly as much chaff as there is wheat.  Both my wife Johanna and I own movies that not only are we not likely to watch again, we didn’t even really like them the first time.

Below is a list of sixteen that struck me as particularly ridiculous.  These aren’t necessarily the worst movies we own; a couple of these are actually pretty good.  But, for one reason or another, none of these films deserves a place in our DVD collection.  Most of them don’t belong in the DVD library of anyone who wasn’t directly involved in their production.

16) Coyote Ugly

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I almost cut this out of the list so that I would have an even fifteen.  I mean, even without having seen this I know that it’s a terrible movie.  But if being terrible were the only consideration, this would be a much longer list; inclusion here requires a DVD to be particularly useless.  Johanna expressed surprise, however, when I went to put it back on the shelf, saying that this was the movie she was most embarrassed to own.  That was enough to re-earn it a spot.

15) Patriot Games/Clear and Present Danger

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OK, so these aren’t terrible movies.  I mean, as far as action movies go, they’re a little bit quaint by today’s standards, but that’s still Harrison Ford and not Steven Seagal on the cover there.  But the question remains, what would possibly compel me to buy one of these on DVD, let alone BOTH?  And I can guarantee that these were separate purchases and not some discount two-pack.  I decided, on two individual occasions, that I needed to purchase a Jack Ryan movie on DVD.  And, both times, Harrison Ford’s Jack Ryan.  Not Alec Baldwin’s Jack Ryan.  Not Ben Affleck’s Jack Ryan.  What was my motivation?  I’ve never even read a Tom Clancy novel!

14) Papillon

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The first half of this movie is actually kind of great!  The second half just keeps going and going and going and is a mess.  But quality isn’t really the issue here.  Why do we own this?  I’m kind of surprised this is even available on DVD.  How many of you have even heard of this movie?

Actually, the more I think about it, the more I’m glad we have this.  How many copies of this can their even be in circulation?  I’m guessing no more than 500.  I now consider myself a part of a very exclusive Papillon club.

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The Golden Globes, 2011

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We warmed up earlier this month with the People’s Choice Awards, but now Awards Season begins in earnest with the Golden Globes.  By the way, People’s Choice Awards, you may need to reassess your existence if you’re nothing more than an unnoticed ramp-up to the ridiculous disaster that is the Golden Globes.  And I’m sure you noticed that I didn’t even bother with you, Critics’ Choice Awards.

As per the usual, my wife Johanna and I will be competing in a winner-picking competition.  We’ve done this for nine award shows and I’ve beaten her eight times.  Her one win?  Last year’s Golden Globes. That doesn’t bode well for me tonight; I suspect her tendency to make at least one or two crazy choices really helps her because of the general goofiness of the Hollywood Foreign Press.

She wants the win, too.  You guys should have seen her agonizing over her ballot!  I thought she was going to have a breakdown making her picks.  She also had to fulfill her role as award show bartender.  In honor of the foreign voters and the drunken, vaguely trashy vibe of the evening, she’s whipped us up a wine spritzer with equal parts Chardonnay, Sprite Zero, and Diet Orange Fanta.  As she set it down in front of me she said, “These are relatively disgusting, BTW,” but I’m enjoying mine so far.  She’s calling it the “Slutty Exchange Student” and assures me that she’s working on a second concoction for later this evening.

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All right, let’s get started.  As always, categories and winners in bold.  Take it away, Ricky Gervais!

8:01 – Here’s Ricky!  As I said last year, I think he’s perfect for this job, mostly because he doesn’t seem to care much about offending people and he doesn’t seem stiff and over-prepared.  I’m looking forward to it.

His drinking a beer on stage thing is starting to feel like a gimmick, though.

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8:04 – The audience has definitely warmed to him since last year.  He’s getting more laughs from the famous people up front.  Robert De Niro is certainly enjoying himself.

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