Saturday, August 29, 2009

Labor of Lohan

The other day I hung out with my good friend Lindsay and we commiserated about the loss of status of our once beloved Lindsay Lohan. We were both huge Mean Girls fans and are both major gossip whores so we've followed Lohan's downard spiral for years. We decided the best thing to do was open a bottle of wine and rent Labor Pains now out on DVD. Check out the trailer and my review below:

Labor Pains lead by falling star Lindsay Lohan has had a rough go of it. After initial hopes of a theatrical release the movie was sold off to cable and premiered on ABC Family before limping its way to DVD. The comedy follows the attempts of Thea played by Lohan, to fake a pregnancy in order to keep her job as a personal assistant in a publishing firm.

The movie is an occasionally charming mess. To further beat the pregnancy theme home the biggest subplot involves Thea being promoted to editor of a book on pregnancy. There is also romantic intrigue as Thea begins to fall for her too good looking to be wearing those glasses boss Nick Steinwald played by Luke Kirby. It was rather apparent that director Lara Shapiro and co-writer Stacey Kramer know little to nothing about pregnancy, publishing or office politics. The attempts to fake a pregnancy are laughable as is the complete lack of believability to any of the publishing and office plots.

While many people would be quick to fault Lohan, because of far too well known personal struggles, she herself is the highlight of the movie. It really does speak to her natural talents that she is able somewhat rise above this terrible material. The only other person in the movie who isn’t complete sunk by the wooden dialogue is Cheryl Heins of Curb Your Enthusiasm fame.

The movie is predictable from start to finish, but it isn’t completely devoid of entertainment value. If you’re one of Lohan’s few remaining fans who have been waiting form something this will likely suffice for now. Labor Pains is a simple and basic film, it is funny, sometime even intentionally.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

3oh 3 Roadtrip

I went up North for a long weekend to visit my friend Paul. We had a blast going out to eat, hanging out at the lake and staying up late to sauna, night swim and watch movies. I did forget however that the horrible stretch of road earned its name in part by the lack of good radio available. Somehow I forgot both CDs and my ipod and got stuck with crap for about an hour. So for the way home I bought the 3Oh3 CD

I think the CD is a lot of filthy fun! They're sort of a weird mix of rock and rap, but not in an irritating Linkin Park/Limp Bizkit way (man, even spelling their names is irritating). They have sort of tongue in cheek lyrics about drinking, womanizing and picking fights. The beats are great, really good music to work out to or listen to in the car with your windows rolled down. My personal favorite track is Chokechain, and of course we can't forget their breakout hit Don't Trust Me. But true ME this Colorado duo is worth looking in to, and now has been nominated for the VMAs to boot. And also, Sean Foreman is a total hipster crush object.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Make it work, on Lifetime

So Project Runway is FINALLY back after all of it's behind the scenes drama. I can't even remember the last time the show was on and I had cable, I am extremely excited to watch this new season, check out the promo clip:

The first episode was amazing! The new designers seem to have some interesting characters among them, but I don't have a favorite yet. I always like to watch a few episodes before I pick my pony. Tonight's challenge was to make a red carpet look and best of all was special guest star Lindsay Lohan!!!!! I still loves me some Lohan, even if she has gone off the deep end.

Ari was the first kicked off and I think that I am somewhat disappointed by that. I kind of liked her Samantha Ronson looks and crazy M.I.A. designs. I am also looking forward to seeing the new series Models Of the Runway (though I'd have gone with Modes off the Runway). I've always loved models and modeling shows and one to go along with Project Runway has got to be fun.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

District 9 review

I went and saw District 9 with my friend Scotty and we both thought it was awesome! I have so been wanting some good popcorn FX movies to come out this summer and this one rules. I loved the basic idea of it, the story was good the acting was better and I didn't even hate the tiny baby alien, it was super cute. Check out the trailer and my review below:

District 9 the new film directed by Neill Blomkamp and written by Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell is a summer sci-fi blockbuster unlike any I have ever seen. Told in a documentary style that recalls last years breakthrough hit Cloverfiled, District 9 tells the story of the struggle to deal with an alien refugee camp in Johannesburg, South Africa. Having crash landed twenty years ago the aliens were found starving and delirious inside their ship, they have been living in a refugee camp slum and causing ever increasing tensions with the human populations in the area.

District 9 begins by following Multi-National United (MNU) employee Wikus Van de Merwe (Sharlto Copley) who has been given a promotion, through family connections, to lead the effort to relocate the aliens to the new District 10 far outside the Johannesburg city limits. In early footage Wikus seems cheerful and excited about the task of getting the inhabitants, referred to as Prawns, to sign eviction notices. The light mood is contrasted by intercutting comments of family and colleague that ominously foreshadow events to come in the film.

From there we follow Wikus as he attempts to evict the Prawns in District 9, which has become a violent and dangerous slum. As the film progresses we delve deeper into both District 9 itself and the politics behind it. The Prawns have been increasing in population over the past two decades, which lead to the call for them to be relocated. After attempting to serve one of the eviction notices Wikus is injured and subsequently infected with alien DNA, which increases the tensions for him, and the situation in general as he become a man on the run.

The plot of the film is exciting enough on its own, but it takes on deeper meanings when viewed as symbolic of many other conflicts in the world today. It would be easy to dismiss it as just another “humans are the real monsters” type story, though that point is made quite clear. Viewed in the context of other cultures and populations that have been displaced though war, famine or disease District 9 takes on an emotional impact that is hugely uncommon in a summer blockbuster. Using aliens to represent the oppressed can allow filmmakers to address important humanitarian issues to an audience that might not seek out a film with such themes. Making the oppressors humans, for a change, forces the audience to see themselves in the villains of the piece and highlights the ethical issues involved.

Of course none of this would be possible if the movie itself weren’t so damn well made. The effects are tremendous! The special FX on the main Prawn, Christopher Johnson, are so well don . Short of Gollum himself I have never seen a more emotionally complex performance from an unreal creature The lowered budget special effects are completely unnoticed because of the documentary style of the filming. And what really makes the movie is the fantastic performance of Sharlto Copley as Wikus. From his dopey, bumbling opening scenes to his completely believe badassery at the end, he delivers. I could not believe how few previous credits he has considering he completely carries this movie in the acting department. For Copley alone District 9 is worth seeing. District 9 has finally made up for the fairly lame 2009 summer season by showing that movies still can be well made, deep and kick ass. Definitely one to check you.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Seven mintues in heaven, or GOOP yeah that's the one

So our good friend Gwyneth Paltrow over at GOOP! has posted a new cooking video with a great "fast" recipe for dinner for four.

LOL Ok, I gotta say GOOP! only makes me heart Gwyneth even more. I enjoy how completely out of touch with reality she is. She clearly means well but has no idea when she comes across as charming and when she comes across as self-centered or just loony toons. Either way, this particular recipe doesn't seem too bad and I can't help but find it hilarious that she apparently hired a camera man and editor to put together cooking clips for her blog. Or who knows, maybe Moses holds the camera and Apple is a wiz at imovie.

And also, just for the record I do enjoy her as an actress but only in supporting roles. Seven, Talented Mr. Ripley, Iron Man = Awesome Sylvia, Sliding Doors, Shakespeare in Love = slit wrists...any questions?

Monday, August 10, 2009

sun, fun, art, beer

Well the hot times have continued. Yesterday I spent the day going between the the Uptown Art Fair and the lake with my friend Lindsay. It was so hot and sweaty, which I love but hate to sweat in public so after checking out some good, bad and ugly art we dashed over to Lake Calhoun and then popped in the water for a quick refresher before making out way to Feligio down for happy hour. All and all pretty excellent for an unplanned Sunday afternoon.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Wet Hot American Summer

Yesterday was a blast! It was extremely hot and humid out, you couldn't step outside without starting to sweat. Lots of people really hate that kind of weather, but for one Saturday after one of the coldest summers in years I found it a fun change of pace. After our sleep over/ wii party at Lindsay's (who was house sitting our in the burbs) we headed over to Ken's mother's house for his sister's graduation party. Congrads to Ellie on graduating and winning a Fulbright to go to Germany! Quite the achievement! The weather was sweltering, but it was nice to eat food and sip cool drinks outside, even if it felt like a steam room with little sprinkles of rain here and there.

After going home and relaxing a bit we got ready to go over to the Pizza Luce block party in uptown. Even after the sun went down it was still hot and muggy out, and then the tornado sirens went off. We decided to still brave it and headed over to uptown for some pizza, beer and music. We met up with Chrissy, Naomi and some others and had tons of fun but by the end of it everybody was hot and worn out, so we drove over to the lake, stripped down and jumped it. An excellent, refreshing end to a hot summer day.