Questions, Comments and Concerns: Dirty Dancing (2017)

Dirty Dancing was the coolest, most grown-up movie when I was eight years old and it was an entirely different movie. The 1987 film was a mainstay of sleepovers and cable tv throughout my ’90s childhood, and it’s where I learned about family summer camps, partner dancing and I guess also abortion. [Traci saw it for the first time as an adult – read her pop culture blind spot post here.] Thirty years (? and also !) have passed since the release of the original Dirty Dancing. Since then we’ve been treated to 2004 sequel Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights, a stage musical that I saw only because it was part of my season package, and now ABC’s TV movie treatment. The 2017 version of Dirty Dancing loosely adapts the original screenplay, makes it a musical – sort of – and stars Abigail Breslin as Baby, Sarah Hyland as Lisa, Debra Messing as mom Marjorie (in what I can only assume is a bid to make us feel even older than we did when we realized Dirty Dancing was 30), Colt Prattes as Johnny and Nicole Scherzinger as Penny, among others. I wanted to like it a bit, but it wasn’t really my cup of tea.

Question: Does this meta-Dirty Dancing framing device serve any purpose?

Dirty Dancing (1987) is the story of a young woman going to family summer camp in 1963 to learn about dancing and herself.

Dirty Dancing (2017) is the story of a 30-something woman going to a stage musical in 1975, of a movie that in the actual universe was released in 1987 (but don’t worry, the 1975 musical still has INCREDIBLY ’80s-looking posters),  which is the story of the time she went to family summer camp in 1963 to learn about dancing and herself.

Maybe ABC just wanted to show off their green screen technology:

Places I’ve seen a more accurate depiction of a person standing on a street in NYC:

(1) New York, New York in Las Vegas

(2) Epcot

(3) Sesame Street

(4) snowglobes

Comment: Baby is an early adopter of Betty Friedan-era feminism

Neither a question nor a concern, just mentioning that the first dialogue is a convo about The Feminine Mystique for whatever reason.

Concern: A costume designer hates Abigail Breslin, a cute young lady

Or is completely unable to tailor clothing to a non-hanger-shaped human. Not sure which would be worse. Two more inches and some work on the darts, PLEASE.

Comment: At least Baby still has anachronistic hair

One of my tv/film pet peeves is anachronistic hair in period films. It was especially prevalent in films of the 1950s to 1980s, but even in this 2017 version Baby has hair that would’ve looked positively nutty in the early ’60s. Still not as bad as Jennifer Gray’s ’80s perm.

See also: Jennifer Gray’s 80s-style jean shorts, crop top, keds combo.

 

Question: How many former So You Think You Can Dance contestants do you think are in the Den Of Vice where the employees go to sing and dance after-hours?

They do a good job.

Comment: Baby looking bemused while wearing Wendy Darling’s nightgown is my vibe during this whole movie.
Question: Honey, what’s this, what’s happening, what’s going on here?

A word on fashions of the late ’50s and early ’60s. Foundation garments were still a THING and ’50s-’60s silhouettes are immensely flattering on ladies with boobs, butts, etc. because the waist is emphasized. These ill-fitting costumes without a proper foundation are just all wrong – even if a fashion-clueless teenager might have looked dowdy by accident, there’s no real need to do that here. Making such an adorable girl dress like my grandma after she gave birth to her fifth child in 1960 ought to be a crime.

Concern: Everyone is really crabby at Baby. Constantly.

Baby: I’ll pay for your abortion.

Johnny: Literally buzz off forever, Baby.

Comment: White struggle: learning to move/clap on the twos and the fours.
Comment: What gets me is, I KNOW Abigail Breslin can sell a dance number.

While I’m watching the classic log scene, I’m blown away by how stilted the dance sequences are, and not just in a “Baby’s just learning to dance” way. I don’t know what to blame – the choreography, the direction, the chemistry – but I stop short of blaming Abigail Breslin because we all remember how she totally sold that iconic dance scene in Little Miss Sunshine.

Question: Is anyone watching Dirty Dancing for middle-aged parents coping with a stilted, loveless marriage?

Doesn’t matter. That’s what you’re getting.

Comment: The scene with Penny and Baby dancing is kind of cute.

The Penny/Baby friendship chemistry is a hundred times better than the Johnny/Baby romantic chemistry. Then they start singing, which is a thing that happens in this production. It’s fine. Oldies, not original songs, which is the way to go I think.

Concern: I have to wait for the end of Johnny and Baby’s mambo performance to find out if it was supposed to have gone well or not.

The audience cheers.

No lift, though.

Started on the two.

Success?

Question: Why was Johnny in prison?

I mean, Johnny was in prison for car stuff. But WHY, you know?

Comment: White struggle #2: Having to leave family camp early.

Not my particular struggle (the idea of my parents ever spending money on something like a family resort-camp is laughable), but presented like it’s a very real tragedy here. Debra Messing pointedly sings They Can’t Take That Away From Me, which is how women in 1963 showed their emotions when their vacation and marriage was about to be cut short.

Concern: Is Debra Messing’s lawyer in her rolodex?

Marjorie wants a divorce and says “I called my lawyer” (and also “I’d rather be alone than lonely”), which causes me to hop on the memory train and get off in the era before cell phones and internet. She either had her lawyer’s number written down or memorized, or the main office had a yellow pages for her home region. Then she either had to use the office phone or a pay phone. Which is all to say that she wants this divorce hard.

Concern: Talk-singing.
Comment: Baby has to tell her whole family she slept with Johnny in order to absolve him of stealing a watch.

And THAT is why you don’t go to summer camp with your family.

Question: Could the costume designer be trolling us?

All of the ’60s styles that would look gorgeous on Abigail and they do this:

Comment: The last half hour of the movie.

Hulu keeps freezing, but I caught the last hour on live TV so we’re good.

The parents aren’t getting divorced because the dad sings the same song the mom did earlier, which is the magic formula to undo divorce feelings.

Debra Messing gets a nice dress. Abigail Breslin gets a better dress than before.

Sarah Hyland learns how to play ukulele and instead of the fun warbling off-key song from the original, we are treated to her singing Bob Dylan. Yes, just a week or so at Kellerman’s and she’s a Betty Friedan-reading, Dylan-listening folk singer with an interracial love interest. As Hairspray – another ’80s flick set in the ’60s with a (better) 2000s remake – would say, Welcome To The 60s. (Marco, Lisa’s friend who teaches her about ukulele and probably love, is cute and charming, played by newcomer J. Quinton Johnson. I like him. And Don’t Think Twice (It’s Alright) Is probably one of my top 10 Dylan songs, anyway.)

The less said about the closing song, the better. I’m just going to say this: the spoken phrase “I had the time of my life” segues into the sung phrase “I had the time of my life.”

Concern: Oh. This framing device, again.

We’re back in 1975. A baby-faced 30-year-old Baby leaves Dirty Dancing, the smash 1970s musical, and runs into Johnny, who stars in it? Directs it? Choreographed it? The musical is based on her book. Their romance belongs to the past, just like the last three hours of our lives. Baby has a husband and young daughter (who really does resemble young Abigail Breslin) who is probably way under the target demo to be watching Dirty Dancing or to care about her mother’s coming-of-age summer. Baby FINALLY has makeup, hair and clothing that suits her. I kind of wish they went full This Is Us and set the bookends in the present day with Abigail Breslin aged up to 70 years old, watching this telefilm from her living room as a grandchild distractedly live-tweets it. Now THAT is an unnecessary framing device I could get into.

 

Revisiting The Gilmore Girls Series Finale: A Laterblog

“I guess so.” Those are the final three words Gilmore Girls fans had to live with for nearly 10 years when the original series came to a close on May 15th, 2007. Not really satisfying when you know that wasn’t how the show was suppose to end.

Who would’ve thought that nearly a decade later, we’d get a re-do. That Amy Sherman-Palladino would be able to write the finale she wanted to and finally reveal the final four words (as controversial as it was) she had been keeping secret for years.

So today, let’s look back at the finale that aired 10 years ago with this laterblog of our thoughts, feelings, and emotions (ALL the emotions), and revisit the finale like omniscient time travelers from the future.

*Ed. Note: We published this laterblog back in 2015, when we were prepping to go to the Gilmore Girls reunion at the ATX TV Festival in Austin – PRE-Revival news. Little did we know what lay ahead of us. Enjoy!


{Originally posted June 5, 2015)

It’s Friday, and you know what they say, “Friday night’s alright for fighting, get a little action in.” While we won’t be serving up any punches or dinners for that matter, we’re ending Gilmore Girls Week with the memorable, controversial, semi open-ended ending to the series – the finale.

We’ve done a number of live blogs in the past, but since we’re watching and recapping it almost exactly eight years later (give or take a month), it’s a laterblog of sorts. However, tomorrow what WILL be live is our reports from the #ATXFestival, where the gang is reuniting. Will there be talk of a real reunion? What does Scott Patterson look like now and IRL? And will Amy Sherman-Palladino ever reveal the final lines she planned for the show?

As this post goes live, we’re already in the thick of it, so follow us this weekend on Twitter & Facebook (links on the right) with the hashtag #CAndSTakeATX for Gilmore goodness and all things television! Now, let’s revisit the final episode of Gilmore Girls and grab the tissues, because we’re highly emotional people.

Traci: I’d like to preface this by saying like Friends, I have only seen the Gilmore Girls finale a very few number of times, as opposed to the countless times I’ve seen every single other episode. I usually stop my chronological viewings on the second to last episode, partly because I can’t handle my emotions, and partly because it gets me all riled up and frustrated that they had to end the entire series that way. But we’ll get to that part later.

In 2007, I made a date with my friend Caitlin to watch the finale together. We both love the show – one of our initial bonding moments in college was when we were studying abroad and us and our friends would get together to illegally watch new episodes of GG on my computer since we couldn’t get it in the Netherlands, obviously. We are both emotional people, so we couldn’t be with anyone else except each other. I went over to her house and I remember it going by so quickly, us both crying and snotting towards the end, and like that, it was all over. I’ve seen it maybe three – four, now – times since. Here we go.

Molly: I just got swallowed up into a flashback of trying to watch tv during study abroad. I had a homestay … and their apartment didn’t have internet. Anyway, it was a really good season of Mira Quien Baile that year. I think there were episodes of Gilmore Girls from that period that I didn’t see until I started rewatching it before ATX. Of course, we studied abroad during season 6, so no great loss there. I’ve only seen the finale once, and my recollections are hazy at best.

T: The coup of getting Christiane Amanpour, Rory’s idol since season one, is absolutely one of the most brilliant cameo castings to ever happen on television. Now that I’m thinking about it, it was probably a sign from the writers that Rory’s story – in this part of her life at least – is done being told. She’s ready to go work and be on her own, without being close enough to Lorelai to drive home to her in an hour. Christiane is a symbol of what Rory could be in the future, and she’s propelling her towards the right direction.

M: It’s really easy to read the Christiane Amanpour appearance as stunt casting, but Traci nailed it. From season one we’ve seen Rory pursue the life she wanted, getting sidetracked during some of those weird years (YACHT HEIST WTF), and this just shows she’s making it to where she wanted to be.

Possibly the most awkward picture taken of all time

T: Lorelai gets weird around celebrities like “Jane Pauley, Harry Belafonte and Marisa Tomei” – why are all these people visiting Stars Hollow??

M: It’s like in Full House where like of COURSE Little Richard and the Beach Boys want to hang out with the Tanners.  But if Norman Mailer is to be believed, the Dragonfly is a great place to sit around during lunch hours.

T: The Stars Hollow High School band is playing Pomp and Circumstance at the Rory’s Graduation Reenactment Ceremony. I’ve always said this – the town puts Rory on a pedestal, and it’s borderline creepy, even though you know they’re coming from a place of love.

Rory Gilmore: Ice Cream Queen

M: That’s true, and it makes me love early seasons Rory for not being a bratty teen when she has everyone fawning over her all the time. In real life, even those of us who were AP/Honors/community service/ extracurricular-type teens barely got more than an “eh, you’re sufficient.” I think I like Stars Hollow better. [Of course, this also makes me sort of dislike Logan-era Rory for turning into a cruddy rich kid.]

2002-era Rory would never have had a Birkin Bag plot device.

T: “Once a screamer also a screamer.” No context for you.

M: I’m actually only on late season 6 in my rewatch, so skipping ahead a bit, but they definitely changed Caesars somewhere, right?

T: I just really love the fact Luke has a sister. And I love that she’s weird. With Luke’s parents gone and him just being an all-around grump, the one person he always has unconditional love for is his sister, even if TJ is being, well, TJ.

M: Do the very wealthy really still dress up for dinner at their own houses, Downton Abbey-style, like Richard and Emily do?

T: I can see rich East Coasters living in like, Brownstones in the Upper East Side doing this.

Normal, casual, Friday night dinner

T: Edward Hermann 😦 So sad every time I see him on the show. Fact: I went to a play he was in in Boston just because he was in it, NOT because I was interested in the history of Aristotle (or whatever it was about).

M: For some reason I thought his character was older, and when Edward Hermann died I couldn’t believe he was only in his early 70s. Too young.

T: I’M JUST SO PROUD RORY GOT A JOB WITH THE FUTURE PRESIDENT

Rory Gilmore – still on the road with Barack Obama in 2012

M: Remember how buzz-y Barack Obama was a this time? It’s kind of like our Gilmore Girls playlist where you have to put yourself back in that time – we’d had 8 years of the same president and it sounds hokey, but we really all were looking for ~hope and change. Also I never saw those 2012 pics and that’s adorable!

T: Reminder this also happened season five:

T: AND CUE TEARS NUMBER ONE:

Emily: “So this is it – we won’t see you again for who knows how long?”

Lorelai: “After dinner drinks for sure”

Richard: “Here, Here.”

T: Everyone being upset about Rory’s reenactment party being cancelled is another Rory Pedestal example. They must have other people graduating this year??

M: Granted she’s not graduating this year, but I always wondered why the town didn’t make a bigger deal about Lane. She was also an exemplary teen/young adult with a single mom. Wait. Do we know anything about Lane’s dad? Or did Mrs. Kim just find her in a basket at a tent revival?

T: They reference Mr. Kim a few times in the early seasons, but falls into the category of folks like Al of Al’s Pancake World and East Side Tilly of Characters Who Are Often Mentioned But Never Show Their Faces

M: Got it, so he’s like the Cathy Santoni of Stars Hollow. Or Cousin Tino.

T: TEARS NUMBER TWO *more of a fangirl flailing and tear up*:

LUKE IS GOING TO SOOKIE TO SECRETLY PLAN THE PARTY ANYWAYS

#LUKEDANESDREAMMAN

T: Ok so the town secretly coming together is sweet and not pedestal-y, since they’re doing it because they actually care a lot about Rory and Lorelai. Clearly at this point, they’re doing it out of love. And that makes my emoji face all heart eyed.

M: I love that Luke brought Sookie in on it. I loved Sookie throughout the show, and now it’s kind of crazy to think we had this future star playing this great secondary character for 7 years.

T: Taylor really hates mylar balloons – noted.

M: Speaking of which, at what point did grocery stores stop selling mylar balloons at the register? And wasn’t it really expensive to keep them all inflated all the time?

T: THIS IS IMPORTANT. I CAN’T BELIEVE I’M JUST REALIZING THIS NOW!!! I just had a flashback to my local Wegmans (Look it up, everyone west of like, Ohio).

tiny mylar balloons in the back

T: I really wish I could make a gif of Luke and co. bringing all the grills and items to set up for the party, then spot Lor and Rory, then run away silently. There are people carrying a table and running.

Photo May 31, 12 45 25 AM

M: I wish I paid closer attention to the townspeople extras throughout the series. Did they reuse a lot of people? On a less heartwarming note, I hate when Jackson breaks out his Osh Kosh B’gosh. He’s also wearing some sort of a Little Rascals type cap.

NAGL unless you’re playing Shirley Temple’s boyfriend or something.

T: I think maybe? But also I don’t think I pay too much attention either. The only person I’ve noticed is the Asian guy.

T: DAVE RYGALSKI NAME DROP

T: TEARS NUMBER THREE:

RORY SAYING GOODBYE TO LANE

I’m so glad Rory and Lane got to have this scene together, especially since in the later seasons, it’s been more focused on Rory and Paris being best friends, since Lane had her own life going on.

M: During the initial Dean vs Jess debate – before it became clear that Dean was just a breathing trash-factory – my bias was always Team Just Hang Out With Lane, You’re 16. Seriously. 30-year-old 2015 Rory is definitely still friends with Lane, and doesn’t even have Dean’s number listed as Dean DontAnswer in her phone anymore. Do you guys do that? Use the surname DontAnswer to remind yourselves not to talk to some people if they call? That was MADE for people like Dean.

T: TEARS NUMBER FOUR:

Lorelai: “It’s too soon. If I start to think about you leaving now, I’m gonna fall apart. It’s too soon.”

M: Total throwback to The Lorelais First Day At Yale, when Rory had a week less time than she thought before starting college. Remember that feeling, like no time would have been enough but they just weren’t prepared for it to be THEN?

T: OMG why have I never noticed the random Asian townsperson finally got to say a line?!!? BRAVO.

Photo May 31, 12 46 21 AM 

M: There’s my answer about recurring extras!

T: TEARS NUMBER FIVE:

LORELAI SNEAKING IN WHILE RORY’S SLEEPING TO TUCK HER IN AND SAY A SILENT GOODBYE

It’s weird – we’re at that age now where a lot of our friends are either about to get married, are already married, or are married with kids, and watching this scene, I had more of a sympathy with Lorelai, thinking to myself how hard it must be to say goodbye to your kid – the one you’ve raised for so long, and now you have to finally set them free. Before, I was just thinking how awesome it was that Rory was going to go on the road with Obama for this great job, which makes sense, because this aired towards the end of my junior year of college. Perspective, y’all.

M: Agreed. I had a moment a few years ago when I realized I was closer to Season One Lorelai’s age than Rory’s. Even though we don’t have kids, I think we’ve made that shift from seeing ourselves as kids – where your place in the world is being someone’s kid, right? – to autonomous adults. So now when I watch things from when I was younger, like Gilmore Girls, I relate to the “adults” more than I could before. DAMMIT TRACI. TEARS NUMBER ONE.

T: NOT EVEN SORRY FOR THE TEARS.

T: TEARS NUMBER SIX:

LUKE SEWING ALL THE TARPS TOGETHER TO MAKE A TENT FOR WHEN IT RAINS

apparently someone has the same feelings as me

T: UGH I HAD TO PAUSE THE EP ONCE THEY LOR STARTED DRIVING IN HER JEEP IN THE RAIN BECAUSE I HAD TO BRACE MYSELF FOR WHAT’S COMING.

T: TEARS NUMBER SEVEN (JUST A STEADY STREAM AT THIS POINT, TBH):

HEARING THE CHEERS FROM UNDER THE TENT

ZACH AND JACKSON RUNNING OUT WITH UMBRELLAS TO GET LORELAI AND RORY

THE SCAN ACROSS EVERYONE CHEERING FOR HER LIKE A FINAL GOODBYE TO THE CAST UGHHH HOLD UP WHERE IS MICHEL

EMILY AND RICHARD SHOWING UP – WAIT LUKE HAD TO CALL RICHARD AND EMILY TO INVITE THEM!! JUST REALIZED THIS NOW.

Richard: “I don’t think this is all for Rory. I think this party’s a testament to you, Lorelai, and the home you’ve created here. It takes a *crying rn* a remarkable person to inspire all of this.

Lorelai: Thanks, dad.

TAYLOR: “BIRTH YOU FROM OUR COLLECTIVE WOMB” YOU’VE CROSSED THE LINE, YET AGAIN.

M: I DON’T LOVE TO HATE TAYLOR. I just hate Taylor. Also he said “gestated” and “nourished” and I haaaate hate hate hate both those words.

T: RORY THANKING LORELAI

M: Reminder that I’m a huge cryer: during Rory’s speech all I can think is I wouldn’t be able to do that without sobbing. I’m real fun at weddings, funerals, days when my friends post pictures of their children on instagram, etc.

T: EMILY TRYING TO GET LOR TO KEEP GOING TO FRIDAY NIGHT DINNERS BY BUYING HER A SPA

M: Also there’s my answer on the dress code! “Don’t wear jeans.”

Emily: “It’s an honor to be your grandmother, Rory Gilmore.”

LORELAI PASSING BY KIRK AND TAYLOR AND BABETTE ONE LAST TIME

OBVIOUSLY THIS REUNION KISS

ME: 

M: UGH Speaking of Titanic, when Rory walked into the party it was like when Old Rose dies or whatever, and she’s back on the ship being greeted by everyone. Except Rory’s not dead, though she is embarking on life on the political campaign trail, so same dif. For some reason I was really excited to see Gypsy.

T: OKAY BUT FRREAL THE ONE LINE I WILL NEVER FORGET AND IS ETCHED IN MY MEMORY SURROUNDED BY A FLOOD OF TEARS:

T: I JUST HAVE A LOT OF FEELINGS ABOUT THIS EPISODE AND THIS SERIES THAT IT’S ACTUALLY WEIGHING DOWN ON MY HEART

M: We’re blogging this in advance because when this post goes out we’ll be at ATX, and maybe we should have waited to watch this together because my dog looks concerned and I don’t think she “gets it.” When I think of finales I’ve gotten emotional about – this one, Parks and Recreation, The Office, Parenthood – they’re all shows about love and about how there’s genuine good in people. IT’S JUST REALLY LIFE AFFIRMING I’M OKAY.

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Pop Culture Blind Spot: Darby O’Gill And The Little People

Three truths and a lie, St. Patrick’s Day Edition:

  • I grew up Irish dancing and thus I never went to school on St. Patrick’s Day because I had performances.
  • I mostly look like a leprechaun.
  • Every year, my family watched Darby O’Gill and the Little People sometime around St. Paddy’s day.
  • I despair every time someone calls it St. Patty’s Day. Who’s Patricia?

Answer: As you probably guessed from the post title, I’ve never seen Darby O’Gill and The Little People. The 1959 Disney movie is a cheesy, beloved Irish-American classic starring (according to Wikipedia)… Sean Connery?! Woah. In my defense, in the 90s if your family didn’t have the VHS tape of a movie or it didn’t air on a station you got, you just didn’t see it. I’m rectifying that now, so please don’t disinvite me from the next ceilidh or soda bread baking night.

Set design of Irish movies from the 1940s-1970s is the main reason for a lot of lingering Irish stereotypes. Namely, that it’s always vaguely the 1800s with thatch roofs and dirty stucco walls and like … spinning wheels and butter churns and shawls everywhere.

Is the old lady, The Widow Sugrue,  the same old lady from The Wedding Singer? I know it’s impossible but one has to wonder.

It’s not.

If you’re playing Irish Movie Bingo, fill in your square for Pretty Young Lass Needs A Husband

It takes me about 3 minutes to get into the mode where I understand what anybody is saying. It’s not because I’m not used to Irish accents. It’s because these aren’t Irish accents (Katie’s is often OK. Widow Sugrue’s reminds me of elementary school plays where you didn’t know how to do the accent you were supposed to do so you just talked weird).

It’s called Darby O’Gill and The Little People, and for whatever reason I assumed Darby would be a leprechaun too. Nope. Just a guy.

If you’re playing Irish Movie Bingo, fill in your square for Group Of Men Telling Legends In A Pub.

The special effects of Darby talking to leprechaun King Brian are surprisingly very good. Sometimes I think modern CGI makes things look more fake than old-school camera tricks.

The image links to an explanation of some of the *movie magic.* I’m duly impressed.

It also reminds me of the parts of Mr. Rogers when take the trolley to the Land of Puppetville or whatever that was.

If you’re playing Irish Movie Bingo, fill in your square for Village Priest Solving A Financial Problem.

Young Sean Connery could get it.

By the way, Sean Connery is one of those people who’s never been young. He’s 29 here and his face is care-worn and weathered.

Everyone’s sideburns are huge. Little House on the Prairie sideburns.

If you’re playing Irish Movie Bingo, fill in your square for Woman Leans Out A Half-Door.

If you’re playing Irish Movie Bingo, fill in your square for Old Man Plays The Fiddle.

These leprechauns have the best outfits. They’re total Keebler Elf getups.

I’d live inside this Leprechaun Ceilidh. It’s like the Trolls hideout without all the LSD, or Munchkinland without the specter of murder. Yet, anyway.

So many dorky Irish in-references: Brian Boru, the harp that once thro Tara’s halls, a tribe of people cowering away from direct sunlight (no? Just me?).

When Darby plays his fiddle really fast and the leprechauns start dancing crazy, you could forget what I said about “without all the LSD” before. This is trippy.

If you’re playing Irish Movie Bingo, fill in your square for Somebody Gets Someone Drunk In Order To Trick Them.

Always been a sucker for a cat vs leprechaun sequence. Another triumph for old-school special effects.

All these songs sound the same. Bless Janet Munro and Sean Connery. They’re trying so hard to have Irish accents in their scenes together. Sean Connery has natural 21st Century American Invisalign Teeth. Janet Munro, an English actress, definitely looks Irish.

Darby would be a cute name for a dog, right?

Darby, requesting whisky: The best in the house!

Barmaid: [look of shock and fear, because best in the house means things are SERIOUS. Also because Darby gives the drink to a man inside his rucksack.]

I start laughing out loud when Katie starts singing in a drippy voice while preening her weird short bangs and suddenly I can’t stop laughing.

Keep expecting this to turn into an SNL sketch where King Brian is really gross or filthy.

If you’re playing Irish Movie Bingo, fill in your square for Woman Gets Offended When Man Loves Her.

The banshee looks like you’re meant to be looking at it through special glasses.

“29. Sean Connery is TWENTY NINE” – me, out loud, trying to convince myself that Very Adult Man Sean Connery isn’t even 30 here.

The ghostly horse and carriage is actually spooky in a laser light show at the planetarium kind of way. If I saw this as a kid I’d be unnerved.

By the way, the headless horseman doesn’t really have an Irish accent, either.

I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but I laugh every time they sing that stupid song.

If you’re playing Irish Movie Bingo, fill in your square for Characters Drive Away In A Horse-Drawn Cart.

The bottom line: I enjoy old movies, and this was an enjoyable old movie. The underlying question with our Pop Culture Blind Spot posts is whether cult favorites are good of their own accord, or if you have to have some sort of earlier sentimental connection to them to really love them.  I could see being really into Darby O’Gill And The Little People if I had loved it as a kid, and seeing at is an adult I have a healthy appreciation for the old-school special effects and the imaginative story. It actually made me realize, in comparison, how much more I liked last year’s St. Patrick’s Day Pop Culture Blind Spot, The Quiet Man. In the battle between Rugged Men Who Aren’t Irish Playing Rugged Men Who Are, Sean Connery vs John Wayne, John Wayne takes this round.

Questions, Comments, Concerns: Beaches

In an attempt to get back into regularly scheduled programming – both on the blog and life-wise – I watched a Lifetime movie this week. It was a remake of Beaches, the classic 1988 Bette Midler/ Barbara Hershey friendship drama that I don’t remember ever seeing. This reboot takes the action to 2017 and stars Idina Menzel and Nia Long. It was exactly what I’d expect out of a Lifetime remake of a beloved movie with good actresses in it. Take that how you will.

Comment: I’m not coming at this with a lot of history with Beaches.

I thought “didn’t I do a monologue from that for auditions for a while as a kid?” but that was Brighton Beach Memoirs. I think I saw Beaches on TV as a child but I don’t really remember it. Guess what I’m saying is, I’m not expecting to have my memories of Beaches tarnished, I’m just expecting a better-than-usual Lifetime movie.

Comment: They did a really good job with the 80s flashback clothing!
Concern: The 80s being a flashback. I was alive then!

Part of the time anyway.

Concern: When you’re such a musical theater nerd that you know the child versions of CC and Hilary.

CC is Gabriella Pizzolo (Fun Home) and Hilary is Grace Capeless (The Lion King). Goes without saying, they’re adorable and talented in that classic older-than-their-years Musical Theater Child way.

Question: Did they just say this was supposed to be Vegas?

For some reason I thought it was meant to take place in Coney Island or something.

(Per Google, the flashback in the original was set in Atlantic City, which makes way more sense. Sorry. Must have misheard something)

Comment: I can see why people love Beaches.

The segment where the letters are going back and forth is really sweet.

Concern: I don’t love Idina in this role ??

OF COURSE I know Idina is talented. Obviously I loved Rent and Wicked. I don’t dispute that Idina Menzel knows what she’s doing. Just what she’s doing here isn’t working for me. I’m willing to admit the problem is probably me, I just wasn’t expecting to feel this way.

Comment: Love the throwback to Idina’s early lounge/wedding/bar mitzvah singer days though.
Comment: PEN PALS ARE LIKE INTERNET FRIENDS.

I don’t know why it took me this long to realize it, but I suddenly relate to this story more.

Question: Is CC’s apartment really messy or just really cluttered or somewhere in between?

(It’s messy, right?)

Concern: I shouldn’t have laughed so hard at “there’s only one dreidel song.”
Question: There’s gonna be singalongs??

They start singing Oh Come All Ye Faithful and my hopes for this movie skyrocket.

Question: Is the show CC’s in SUPPOSED to be bad?

I legitimately do not know.

(They go on to say that it’s supposed to be good. Huh.)

Comment: Nia’s acting at her father’s funeral.

Good work.

Concern: This friendship really isn’t bringing out anyone’s best selves

I just can’t imagine being this mean to one of my friends, ever?

Like I said, I don’t have any history with this movie but I was expecting a lot more warm fuzzies. Someone better give someone else a kidney soon.

Comment: I went from zero emotional investment to crying when Idina sang about “don’t let the last time I hurt you be the last time…”

This is either the magical power of Beaches, which I’ve known about for years but never witnessed, or the magical power of Idina Menzel, which I know very well.

I think my lack of investment may be because I never really have friend breakups on purpose, I just sometimes suck at keeping in touch with people on accident.

Comment: I miss the beginning of the part where they’re putting a crib together because it sounds and looks like a commercial.

Like, where one woman would start explaining to the other why she likes her new brand of tampons.

Question: When is something awful going to happen?

Because Hilary is adorably pregnant and happy and CC and Hilary love each other and there’s, like, an hour to go. I’ve started to emotionally invest. IS THIS WHAT EVERYONE WAS REFUSING TO TELL ME ABOUT BEACHES.

Comment: Hilary delivers the most gorgeous 2-month-old baby ever.
Concern: Shit. Hilary’s gonna die. Isn’t she. ISN’T SHE.
Concern: C.C. is singing I’ll Stand By You.

This can’t be good. Hilary now has a precious, beautiful 7-year-old. Oh, no.

Concern: “Mommy is tired.” “You’re always tired.”

Oh NO.

Comment: You know you watch a lot of Lifetime movies when you get to the last hour and fully realize that the commercials are gonna start coming every 5 minutes.
Comment: This movie is unexpectedly guilting me for being Type O and unable to donate.

SORRY.

Maybe I’ll work on it.

Comment: Now they’re back to the scene they opened with.

Which means Hilary’s gonna die. Come on, Beaches. This is NOT the week for this.

Comment: “Want to know the most magical thing about being a mommy? I’m always with you.”

Beaches can burn in hell.

Comment: “I want you to take Tory.”

What are you trying to do to me, Beaches.

Comment: “I put it in my will.”

You’re really still going, Beaches.

Concern: Is she going to really die right in the middle of Oh Come All Ye Faithful?

(She doesn’t.)

Comment: This movie has been brought to you by Guilt Over Not Donating Blood
Comment: OH WOW. I forgot that (a) Wind Beneath My Wings was from this movie and (b) for whatever reason, I always hated Wind Beneath My Wings.

Like, I’m half sad, half furious that this song is playing.

Comment: I take back what I said about not liking Idina in this role.

Slow burn, was all.

Concern: If little Tory comes on stage to sing I’m going to die.

She didn’t. I live.

But you know who doesn’t?

Hilary Whitney. RIP.

Comment: Going from this to Steel Magnolias feels like a very irresponsible programming choice, Lifetime.

 

 

Salute Your Shorts Live Blog: Zeke The Plumber – Open Air Toilets & Brain Plunging

In keeping with our Social Media Hashtag week, we’re celebrating #ThrowbackThursday and the 25th birthday of Salute Your Shorts by rewatching the favorite episode of my childhood, Zeke The Plumber (don’t worry, this isn’t one of our real theme weeks …. but the one we have on deck next week is gonna be non-stop, if you know what I mean, and I think you do). We only had five days during Big Orange Couch Week, and we focused on Are You Afraid Of The Dark, Clarissa Explains It All, The Secret World of Alex Mack, The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo, and All That. But if you were a 90s Kid (TM), you’ll also hold Camp Anawana in your hearts. And when you think about it, it makes you wanna fart. Which was a great joke when you were 6. 

You can watch the episode here! Or, preferably, somewhere legal instead. Ready? Go!

  • The episode opens with a child holding a 90s camcorder and narrating a walk through the woods for his parents. Remember camcorders? And how if you didn’t have a heavy, expensive piece of equipment and the ability to convert those little cassettes to videotape, your memories just had to live in your brain?
  • Sometimes, we look back on terrible haircuts of the past and think “well, it was fashionable then. Times change and someday we’ll all think we look dumb now, too.” This isn’t one of those times. I knew Budnick’s red mullet was bad when I was in kindergarten, and I know it now. Looking back, it actually might be the first time in my whole life I identified that somebody had bad hair.

    But also, this wasn’t totally out of left field in the early 90s – it’s not like he made up this weird hairdo. The 90s did.

  • It’s almost on the fence between ‘mullet’ and ‘too much of your hair is bangs.’ MAKE UP YOUR DAMN MIND BUDNICK.
  • I, um… I don’t remember if I noticed that Ug Lee’s name was “ugly” as a kid. I do remember assuming that he was Budnick’s dad or uncle, because wherever two or more redheads are gathered, I will assume that they’re related. (My childhood BFF and I were both tiny freckly gingers; we loved that people thought we were sisters.)

    No but. They do look alike, right???

     

  • Let’s talk about the theme song. First of all, why do people/Ug put zinc oxide just on their noses? I’ve never had a sunburn that encapsulated just my nose but surely there’s a reason. Also, this may be the genesis of me thinking it was super dorky that I had to wear sunscreen all the time. Anyway, all of the characters are set up in the opening credits. ZZ is a goody-goody who loves nature (she’s Dawn from the Baby-Sitters Club, mas o menos), Ug doesn’t know what’s going on around him, Donkey Lips is a Bobby Moynihan character, Budnick is a shit-stirrer with silly hair, Telly likes sports, Dina is the pretty popular girl, and Sponge is small. There’s a blonde boy I don’t remember well (Michael) who was just … regular … I think? Like if Salute Your Shorts were a movie, he would have been played by one of the Corys.

  • The kids are telling ghost stories and I have questions. Are they supervised? And where did they get all those candles? And matches? Does anyone else think this looks like a huge fire haz? I never went to camp; this all may be very normal.
  • The gist is: Zeke the Plumber was a camp plumber who had no nose. He hit a gas pipe, couldn’t smell the gas and lit a match (I HAVE MORE QUESTIONS, like why would he light a match in the first place, and why are there so many damn matches at this camp, and surely he knew he punctured a pipe, ok?). So Zeke dies and only his plunger was left behind, which I don’t think he needs in a hole with a match, but I’m not a plumber so what do I know.
  • Wow all of these kids are so young! I thought Dina and Z.Z. were so cool and sophisticated and they looked like literal babies:

  • Zeke the Plumber appears in the boys bunk, spending his afterlife plunging children’s toilets, which seems like an odd choice but you do you, Zeke. More specifically, he is plunging the OPEN AIR TOILET THAT JUST HANGS OUT IN THE BUNK ALL THE TIME. Was this there before? And is this camp or prison?!

  • On a related note, I have a weird ghost toilet in my basement and the floor drain near it started spewing water last week …. and all I could think was “in what universe would someone need a haunted toilet in their basement anyway?” I’ll tell you what: a universe in which you’re keeping someone in your basement. That’s all.
  • Nevermind. Zeke was a dream. He “found” Michael’s stuffed hippo in the toilet and plunges his brain.
  • How expensive do we think this camp is?
  • Now, via dream,  Zeke tells Telly he can turn her into a professional ball player, plunges her brain, and sends her to a ball instead. But all the kids dream Zeke the same so he’s obviously real, right?
  • Sponge has an enormous laptop, because this was still that era where being really into owning a computer meant you were a nerd on TV. For a moment I think he’s about to look up Zeke the Plumber, but then I remember that we were years away from it being normal to have internet access, and even more years away from wifi. Maybe that nerd-o was playing Oregon Trail or Carmen Sandiego.
  • Now Budnick is going to spend the night in the woods at the spot where Zeke died. Hold on, I have questions again. How do they know, and why was he digging a hole in the middle of the woods, and why is there a gas pipe in the middle of the woods?
  • The kids all set out to punk Budnick to get him back for scaring them with the Zeke the Plumber story.
  • The punkers become the punk-ees, as Budnick replaces himself with a dummy with a melon-head and sets off soda cans.
  • Ug impersonates Zeke and Budnick catches him in a rope trap, and I know I’m getting old because all of this seems like a lot of damn work just to prove a point.
  • Ug looks exactly like all the kids imagined Zeke The Plumber, which in my estimation means that he’s a real ghost after all.

Questions, Comments and Concerns: The Wolfpack

The Wolfpack is a documentary about the Angulo brothers, 6 teenage(-ish) boys kept almost entirely confined to their apartment by their father, Oscar. The boys watched thousands of movies, became obsessed with film, and even recreated favorite films at home: transcribing scripts, assigning roles, and building props by hand. On one of their early forays into the streets of New York City they met filmmaker Crystal Moselle, who was intrigued by their matching long hair and dark suits, looking like the cast of Reservoir Dogs. A friendship began based on their mutual love of film, and eventually Moselle began a documentary about the Angulo brothers’ lives: The Wolfpack.

Unlike most of our Comments, Questions and Concerns post, this is actually a GOOD movie. It’s just that there’s so much going on here that we do have a few questions, comments and concerns about this most unusual family.

Comment: This is a documentary with no narration, very few talking heads, and no name cards.

So if you didn’t see the 20/20 special on the family ( or any of the myriad articles about these brothers, you’ll be figuring out what’s going on as the doc progresses. But other than some trouble keeping the boys’ names straight, you’ll be just fine.

Comment: Someone in this family is a prop master in the making.

Link: The Wolfpack brothers show us how to reenact our favorite films.

In their film recreations, the Angulos create their own props and some of them are really impressive, especially when you remember they were literally using what they had around the house.

Question: Did anyone else transcribe films and TV in their youth?

I think I remember rewinding my VHS tapes to take down dialogue from shows and movies I really liked in the pre-internet era, so while these kids do have some things in common with those of us who had more typical childhoods.

Comment: Understatement of the year: “If I didn’t have movies, my life would be pretty boring.”

It’s a phrase a lot of us can at least somewhat relate to (feel free to substitute movies with TV, or music, or theater), but coming from a teen whose only connection with the outside world was through movies, it’s on a whole other level.

Concern: What would it be like to be Vishnu?

First of all, Vishnu is the only girl in this family. Second, she’s described as special and in her own world, and was reported to have some sort of developmental disability. How did she get the services she need when her family rarely left their apartment? (NB: This isn’t answered, and for good reason: Vishnu isn’t really a subject of The Wolfpack. That’s a good choice because if she does have a developmental disability it would be harder to obtain her knowing consent, and anyway none of it is our business. However, I imagine that her life is probably every bit as fascinating as her brothers’.)

Concern: How does this HAPPEN?

One boy wonders how his parents fell in love in the first place. While more extreme than most of us, this is pretty relatable – when your parents have been together forever, it’s hard to picture them as the young people who first met each other.

In this case, the boys’ Midwestern-raised hippie mom, Susanne, met their father Oscar in South America. They moved to New York. Susanne was under Oscar’s control and Oscar began to shun the outside world, allowing the children to leave the apartment – closely supervised – only about once a year, if that. I understand, on a level, how overwhelming NY would be to a man from a less-populated area, especially when it’s plausible that he has some issues with paranoia and narcissism.

As for their mother,the boys mention Oscar hitting her sometimes, but there wouldn’t even need to be much or any physical violence with this level of psychological control. It’s almost like when you hear about cult members who have realized the leader isn’t what he promised to be, but it’s too late to leave.

Comment: THAT HALLOWEEN SCENE WAS SPOOKY AS HELL THO

The brothers film children trick or treating outside their window. Meanwhile in the apartment, they record themselves in costumes lighting hay on fire and doing a spooky circle dance to This Is Halloween. It was so eerie I almost had to fast forward. If you want evidence that some boys in the group are born filmmakers, look no further. With no budget or script , they sure did evoke Halloween terror.

Question: What would happen if we all talked to people who seem interesting?

The filmmaker (Crystal Moselle) saw this pack of long-haired, suit-wearing brothers on the street. Like most of us, she wondered what on earth their story was. Unlike most of us, she went up to them and asked. What would I find out if I started talking to the characters I see on the street?

(That’s gonna have to remain a mystery. Riding public transit to and from work, I have enough unwanted interactions with strangers without seeking them out.)

Concern: The level of control Oscar had is staggering, and I thought I’d heard everything.

Only Oscar had the keys to the apartment. If he told the boys to stay in one room, they weren’t allowed to leave. He kept seven children so stifled that many neighbors didn’t even know they existed.

Comment: My heart was in my throat during “the escape.”

Mukunda, then 15,  sneaked out of the apartment wearing a Michael Myers mask. He seemed “off” (as a teen in a horror movie mask would) and eventually, concerned strangers called the police. Mukunda was admitted to the psych ward, which he considers a positive experience as he was finally able to interact with non-family members. THEN, upon returning home, he told his father “I refuse to talk to you, I refuse to take your orders, we are no longer father and son anymore.” That has to be one of the bravest things I’ve heard in my life.

From that point on, the spell was broken and the brothers began to leave the apartment.

Question: Should Child Protective Services have intervened?

And in fact, what are the bounds of legality here? I say this as someone who concentrated in family law in a New York state law school, but this is such a gray area. There’s a push and pull between allowing parents the freedom to raise their children, but to intervene if the child’s health and safety are in peril. Is isolating the children at home a form of abuse or neglect?

Concern: YIKES at one of the boys thinking their mother should still homeschool them.

There’s nothing wrong with homeschooling if that’s what both the parents and kids want, and everyone’s getting a good education. The yikes comes because maybe a rule where nobody in this family says that another family member shouldn’t have to leave the apartment would be a good thing, moving forward. (To be fair, he doesn’t say she should never leave AT ALL, but that working outside the home wouldn’t be best when she is qualified to teach the brothers. Also he certainly has insight that we don’t into what Susanne actually wants to do in life.)

We’ll get to this later, but the best and most freeing thing for Susanne might be to move back to where there are open spaces, which she says she misses, particularly if as her son said, having to go out into New York to work would be too taxing on her.

Concern: The hair thing.

The boys have super-long hair, at least until some make the decision to cut it. Their father says it gives them power. Their mom has really short hair. Her decision or nah?

(If it is, and she’s chosen to look different from her family members, that’s pretty cool.)

Question: What would the real world seem like if all you knew was movies?
Comment: I would have loved to see more of the filmmaker’s interactions with the brothers.

I think leaving herself out of the film was a good choice, that’s just my own curiosity. It’s an interesting dynamic and like I said above, reaching out to these kids on the street isn’t something your average person would have done.

Concern: In old footage, Susanne looks at Oscar like Michelle looks at Jim-Bob.

I guess the concern would be that there are hundreds of Michelles looking at hundreds of Jim-Bobs like that.

Comment: Just want to make it clear I’m not blaming Susanne here.

Is there a chance she’s at fault for some of this? Sure, she could be, but I don’t have enough info here to say that. Susanne was very controlled by Oscar for a long time, and she’s obviously a thoughtful and intelligent person who really loves her kids (and even Oscar).

Concern: Oh no. Is Oscar comparing himself to Jesus now? Oh. no.

Comparing yourself to the Christ: almost always a bad sign unless it’s in the vein of “when the weather is warm, Jesus and I are both known to wear sandals” or “Jesus and I both have an Aunt Elizabeth.”

Comment: Sometimes Susanne’s accent really betrays her Midwestern roots (especially when talking with her mom) and I love it.

I also enjoy how very excited she was to reconnect with her family. This is why I love this documentary: I am so rooting for the boys and their mom. (I do feel for Oscar, on some level, and hope he finds some peace.)

Question: Did anyone else practically cheer seeing one of the boys getting a job on a set and interacting with coworkers like anybody else?

Guys. I’m just really into the triumph of the human spirit. They’re gonna make it after all. I’m sure of it.

Comment: ONE OF THEM MOVED OUT!

Jobs. Haircuts. Rock bands. Environmental protests. Girlfriends? I knew this was coming, but I’m amazed anyway.

And we start with the kids watching trick or treaters through their window, and end with them picking pumpkins and apples out in the world. Because at last, they live in it.

Concern: I’m very happy for everybody but if they do any more of this spooky Halloween shit I SWEAR TO GOD.

You’re very great at spooky masks and eerie sequences but I’m’a have to turn this off now.

Pop Culture Blind Spot: Flashdance

Despite being alive in the late 1980s, there are a bunch of movies from this decade that I am totally blind to – Dirty Dancing, Ghost, Top Gun, all of which I’ve since seen. Flashdance is one of them.

This movie was released on April 15, 1983, which makes it nearly 33 years old and three years older than me, so this should be a nice FLASHback to the 80s. Although since we’re deep into Cheers, it shouldn’t be that much of a shock.

Knowledge of this film:

Not Jennifer Grey but rather Jennifer Beals is a dancer and she pours a bucket of water on her person. Also, that What a Feeling song.

Actual IMDb description:

A Pittsburgh woman with two jobs as a welder and an exotic dancer wants to get into ballet school.

SHE’S A STRIPPER?!?!?!?! WHO WANTS TO GET INTO BALLET SCHOOL?? LIT’RALLY NO IDEA.

The title scrolls across the screen like a screensaver from Windows 95. There was a similar title card in The Bodyguard, was this just a thing then??

So Jennifer Beals a legit welder? In the 80s was this a common job for women? Or was it just in Pittsburgh because… steel?

If Irene Cara’s What a Feeling *now I’m dancing for my life* music wasn’t playing throughout these opening credits I would think this is a horror movie with all the shots of coal and people welding in the dark.

Ok, Jennifer Beals is a stripper but have any of her male co-workers been to her strip club because I feel like that would be an awkward conversation the next morning in the locker room.

Ah yes, the iconic water scene. She’s actually a good dancer. Especially since she’s dancing on water. I would’ve broken half my bones at this point.

Oh is she an exotic dancer in who doesn’t strip?

Well the guy who just walked in knows her social security number and tells his pal that she works for him. So there’s that.

Richie, the cook at the bar/strip club, wants to get out of Pittsburgh and move to Los Angeles, but a guy (who I’m assuming is the big boss) tells him, “They don’t let short people into Hollywood.” I CAN BUST THIS MYTH RIGHT NOW.

“This place is so small you have to go outside to change your mind.” – Richie, A short-order cook who’s definitely going to make it as a comic in LA.

Nick looks like a typical “hunk” from the 1980s. Like Tom Selleck or Dustin Diamond.

She’s holding a Pepsi that is an old school metal can and besides the big hair it’s one of the props that makes it obvious it’s the 1980s.

She’s a Maniac is from this movie? What is this weird lunging she’s doing? I’ve obviously seen this running in place move but she’s not even dancing she’s doing weird warm-ups.

Jennifer Beals – do we even know her character’s name yet it’s Alex – enters a dance school where the hallways are lined with leotard and tight-wearing ballet dancers and it’s like Save the Last Dance all over again.

Is this secretary related to Meryl Streep?

Tom Selleck is hitting on Jennifer Beals and just wants to get a snack with her. Get a freaking snack with him Alex.

Alex has a QT old grandma.

She also has a priest she goes to to confess. Gotta get that coveted Catholic demographic in the theater.

Some dude who’s trying to get people to watch the exotic dancers just used the word “cunts”, so he is problematic.

There is a workout montage set to the tune of I Love Rock and Roll and it is the MOST 80s thing I’ve seen.

There are two pop-locking/breakdancing kids (?) in the street and they are my favorites so far.

I realized there have been two dancing scenes sans dialogue (a skating rink and crossing guard) in a row and I think it’s because Alex is attempting to pick up new dance moves from the literal streets? IS THIS NOT SAVE THE LAST DANCE?

Richie is doing his stand-up act at the bar and no one is laughing. BLESS. The joke that makes everyone laugh: “I’m just a cook. This is my big break. If you don’t laugh then I’m gonna put cockroaches in your hamburgers!”

But really, this club is not a strip club no one has gotten naked. Do these clubs still exist? It’s like Chippendales but more clothes (remind me to tell you about my recent experience at Chippendales).

The dude with the offensive language, whose name is apparently Johnny, tries to grab Alex and get her to go with him to “drink wine and smoke some weed” and I hate him. He also beat up Richie, so he’s the worst.

Nick Selleck comes out of the literal shadows to save Alex and instead of getting a ride home from him, she decides to bike home in the dark. Come on Alex, Selleck isn’t going to do anything to you (he drives behind her the whole time for safety).

Alex has a friend named Jeanie who is a competitive ice skater and it makes me yearn for the Olympics/The Cutting Edge movie. JEANIE FELL. SHE FELL AGAIN. THOSE DAMN TRIPLE AXELS. Her dreams are shattered.

Alex and Nick are on a date and she takes him back to her place (an old warehouse?) to eat pizza. BOW CHICKA WOW WOW.

She changed into a sweatshirt and took off her bra in front of him. This is their first date. And it doesn’t matter because they slept together. Their next date is literally walking down a railroad track which leads to a landfill of steel. Guys, just because you work as welders doesn’t mean you have to make your dates themed as such too.

WHAT IN THE FRESH HELL IS THIS I CAN’T STOP LAUGHING IT’S LIKE A 1980S GEISHA DURING A DREAM SEQUENCE OF HOW PEOPLE FROM THE 80S PICTURED THE FUTURE. OMG LITERALLY THIS SONG IS CALLED IMAGINATION AND HAS THE WORDS “FANTASY” IN IT

“Do you know how to do the horizontal mambo” Asshole dude GTFO

Whooaaa Alex just threw stones through Nick’s window in anger but I missed why she is so upset.

Richie is leaving for LA to go for his dreams as a stand-up coming and I am truly sad to see him go but happy he’s

Oh Alex saw Nick with some blonde chick at a dance benefit, who turned out to be his ex-wife.

“I broke your fucking window!… Go fuck your blonde!” I LOVE ALEX

LOL at all the other welders cheering them on from the peanut gallery

Yo Alex is serving in this tuxedo look.

Nick’s ex-wife LOL she looks like a Scandinavian socialite.

What’s happening here? Is it Halloween? It’s Halloween. There’s a free for all on the stage.

Alex applied for an audition to the dance conservatory and she got in!

Alex realizes Nick made a phone call to get her the audition, which she obviously didn’t want because she is a strong, independent lady of the 1980s who doesn’t need any GD help from any man.

Oh finally a strip club with actual stripping. It’s like everyone hates their lives here. Apparently Jeannie ditched being an ice skater and decided to only be a real stripper.

HAHA Alex straight up pulls Jeannie from the stage as she’s stripping. AND Asshole guy comes out of nowhere to tell her to not take Jeannie away and Alex pushes him away. It is great.

“When you give up on a dream, you die.” Nick Selleck says to Alex, and Alex realizing she could end up like Jeannie as a real stripper all at the same time.

Is QT grandma not actually her grandma? Alex is calling her Hanna. OMG SHE DIED. YESTERDAY. NOOOOOO

But NOW I bet Alex is going to use her pain and suffering to follow through on her promise to QT grandma Hanna to get into the dance school.

In full disclosure, I’m getting hungry and there are 20 minutes left of this movie and I can barely pay attention.

But Alex is back in the Priest’s confessional and crying? She’s sinned, obvs.

Alex is back in her black leotard from when she was lunging for this audition, and  I’m really wondering why type of dance she’s qualifying this as. She’s literally gliding by the judges’ table and pointing at each of them hahahaha Yup, she’s incorporating breakdancing in this audition. And apparently she got in because the next scene was see is her running outside to meet Nick and she’s super happy about it.

So that was fine, I guess. I’d say don’t waste your time on it?

Questions, Comments, Concerns: Curly Sue

Curly Sue is having a MOMENT. Alisan Porter is back on TV, the movie is streaming on Amazon Prime, and believe it or not, the 90s sets and outfits look surprisingly fresh. All of that meant that we were due for a rewatch – but don’t worry, we have some comments, questions, and concerns about the whole thing.

Concern: It’s been so long since I’ve seen this movie, it almost feels like it should be a Pop Culture Blind Spots post.

Curly Sue was a mainstay of early 90s HBO, and I used to watch it constantly. But that was 25 years ago, and I was a little kid. What I remember: a shyster pals around with a little girl, cooking up schemes. Was her name even Sue? Can’t remember. It was like a John Hughes-y take on Paper Moon, but set in 1991.

Comment: Curly Sue is now a contestant on The Voice.

Alisan Porter, AKA Curly Sue, wasn’t just another talented tot – she’s a talented adult, too. Of course, if you watched Curly Sue on regular rotation in the early 90s, you won’t be surprised.

Comment: Orphans from the late 80s/early 90s had all the best swag.

Like. I’m glad I have parents, but otherwise I’m pretty jealous of that sweet orphan swag

Curly Sue has this awesome bag covered in pins and ribbons, Punky Brewster had mismatched shoes and the coolest bedroom ever.

Comment: Somewhere in my brain, the instrumental Curly Sue theme has been lying dormant just waiting for me to rewatch.

Question: Is the opening sequence ever going to end?

We inventory Curly Sue’s bag for fully 3 minutes, which is longer than I spend packing for a cross-country trip.

Comment: Law offices were so steely during this era.

I spy: mahogony, modern art, shoulder pads, hairspray. Shards of rubble (?) on the windowsill, artistic empty vessels, UFO lamps, recessed canister lighting.

It looks like how someone from 1991 would decorate an office from “the year 2000.”

Concern: I mentally refer to James Belushi’s hair as a “nice mullet,” then I catch myself.

As mullets go, ok? As mullets go: nice.

Not sure if that’s my low standards for early 90s fashion, but it’s surprisingly non-ratty for a mullet. It looks freshly shampooed and brushed. He nurtures it.

Concern: “However much you love me, that’s how hard you hit me. However hard you hit me, that’s how much you love me.”

This is Belushi instructing Curly Sue to knock him upside the head but ALSO a primer into the psychology of abuse so IDK about you but I’m having a great time.

Question: Were there security cameras in 1991?

Curly Sue and Belushi stage a fake car/pedestrian collision in a parking garage (that’s why Curly Sue had to hit him), but I think in ’91 a closed circuit camera would have cleared that up. Weren’t we all into hidden camera shows during this era? There was no internet; America’s Funniest Home Videos and Candid Camera were our internet.

Concern: Steve Carell is a vampire

Steve Carell, impervious to the forces of time and age, plays a fancy restaurateur. Someone please hunt down Carell’s Civil War daguerreotype?

Comment: 1991 was the fanciest year ever.

Look at these people in their money-colored music hall dressed like they’re definitely at a benefit concert for some sort of Country Day School.

Comment: Calling it: the icy blonde lady who got scammed is going to marry Belushi and be Curly Sue’s new mom.

I think this because Belushi told C.S. that’s who she should hope for as a mom, and because the icy blonde lady looks pensive while she thinks about C.S. at the money-colored music hall.

Concern: a crappy man steals Curly Sue’s ring at the homeless shelter and pawns it.

I just kind of feel like if it was worth money, Belushi (AKA Bill Dancer) should have sold that before making Sue beat a grown man to score a free dinner. Is all.

Comment: THE FIRST CELL PHONE JOKE IN CINEMA HISTORY, maybe.

Remember when cell phones themselves were a punch line, and the joke was that the person who owned it was a Mr. Burns-style mega-millionaire? A phone rings in a restaurant, everybody instantly grabs their giant Zach Morris phones and raises them to their ears. It goes without saying, the restaurant is fancy… 1991-fancy.

Comment: How you know you’re rich and important in movies: an assistant runs alongside you telling you calls and appointments that came in for you.
Question: You know what movie this isn’t?

Different movie entirely.

Answer: Life with Mikey.  (It turns out all of the scenes I thought I remembered from this movie were from Life With Mikey.)

Comment: I will never be rich enough to have a 1991-Rich bathroom.

I love the unnecessary floor lamp and the child-sized house plant.

Question: Did the trailer say this was a movie about going “from rags to riches – and back again!”?

Because that seemed like a really popular trailer tagline for a while there.

Comment: OF F’ING COURSE THE ICY BLOND WOMAN’S NAME IS GRAY.

“Mrs Gray?”, Curly Sue asks.

“No, just Gray” the Icy Blond Woman answers.

Of. Freaking. Course.

Concern: This creepy-ass child’s bedroom.

Curly Sue asks – in the style of a Newsie or a background orphan from Annie – why Gray doesn’t have children because she “has enough dough for lots of them.”

More importantly, why doesn’t Gray have children when she has a fully decorated LITTLE GIRL’S BEDROOM off of her bedroom?

(Also, Gray doesn’t have children because like the sterile modern art in her chilly law practice, she is an empty vessel.)

Comment: You better sing, Curly Susan.

Comment: the makeup department is having a blast doing the egg on Belushi’s head; I can tell.

Really going for it.

Question: Why is Gray’s boyfriend trying to go to sleep in the Haunted Little Girl Bedroom in the middle of the night, anyway?
Comment: Gray’s kitchen really holds up because 1991 is so fancy that its kitchens are from the future.

Some Chip & Joanna shit right there.

Subway tile, glass-front cupboards, stainless steel, minimalist hardware. Is that a copper farmhouse sink?

Comment: This looks fun!

“I’m human cereal, suckers!”

Question: Do you know who I love?

Gray’s surly housekeeper, who dresses like a youth from Sister Act 2. “I don’t usually smoke cigars. My friend had a baby.”

Concern: Curly Sue can’t spell.

Curly Sue spelled asphyxiate as a stunt, but can’t spell the word cat, and thus can’t read/write. Alisan Porter plays this scene so well – no hammy child actor stuff, just really natural.

Comment: Belushi isn’t Sue’s dad, but he “got her from a one night stand.”

I don’t know about you all, but I’m going to need way more info.

Question: Is Gray the Miss Honey of this movie?

She makes a pitch to Curly Sue that somebody’s going to have to tell Sue about girl stuff or whatever, and Gray would make a great fake mom, I think.

Question: How long do you have to go to school to be a lawyer?

The surly housekeeper says lawyers go to school for 20 years, which I guess is true if you’re counting preschool? IDK I’m a juris doctor, not a math doctor.

Comment: I want to go shopping at a nice store in 1991.

See also.

I know, you know: 1991 was fancy. But more importantly, Gray has a saleswoman present her with different things she might like, which Gray then approves or vetoes. Then they box everything up for her in neat parcels. Maybe I just need to go to better stores.

(When I was about 4, I loved to read a story from the 1950s about a little boy whose mom has a shopgirl at the department store find him new summer clothes – red and blue sandals, plus a red and a blue “nice, cool playsuit” – and has them wrapped in paper and tied with string. It all sounded so tidy. Before we had words for the concept, that was 100% my aesthetic)

Comment: Gray has a nice blowout.
Comment: It’s GrEy, with an E.

Like Grey Poupon, the nice mustard that was fashionable at the time. I’m not going back to change it.

Question: How much fabric is in this wedding veil?

You could prevent zika in 3 brazilian villages with this veil

Needless to say, the bride’s name is Tiffany.

Concern: Grey is getting involved in Belushi & Sue’s cons very quickly for a chilly attorney made of stainless steel and shoulder pads.
Concern: What if this is all a long con on Grey? I’ve grown to really like her and I’d never forgive Belushi.

I’d forgive Sue but only because she’s so freaking cute. Also, I’m not feeling any chemistry between Grey and Bill Dancer, like any at all, and I usually ship everything. Their relationship feels exactly like what it is, a shyster staying with a lawyer for a bit because she hit him with her car.

Comment: Maybe every movie I love is just a variation on Annie.
Question: If Belushi is so good at piano, and Sue’s such a good singer, why don’t they busk? Or get jobs?

I know it’s garbage to ask why homeless people don’t “just get jobs” but these are fictional people and I do wonder.

Comment: Grey’s boyfriend (?) calls in an abuse and neglect complaint on Belushi and I gasp “no!” out loud.

John Hughes always made you care about his characters, who were often really, really terrible parents/legal guardians.

Comment: Grey’s giant scrunchie was such a  status-symbol.
Concern: I’m very distressed about Sue getting seized by CPS, but also, on paper Belushi is an unfit parent.
Comment: Very sure temporary foster care wouldn’t be allowed to just randomly cut Curly Sue’s hair like that.

Ward Of The State hair.

Question: Was a person from the future involved in this production?

When Grey (and Bill?) become Sue’s legal guardian, and Grey wears her school drop-off casual look, she’s wearing the same olive-green jacket that every girl has now.

 

Pop Culture Blind Spot: Leap Year

We got a bonus day yesterday, which apparently means that women are *allowed* to propose to their boyfriends instead of the other way around. It’s a tradition that dates back for centuries, and seems to derive from lore in the U.K. and Ireland. And despite the fact that – GASP – women can propose any damn day they want, there was still a bunch of ladies who got down on one knee yesterday and popped the question. Like this woman I found on Instagram, for example. She not only posted about proposing on the days leading to the big day, but in a video, the big moment seemed… anti-climactic?

While this lady’s proposal wasn’t filled with a lot of fanfare, there is one that could possibly be way more dramatic – Amy Adams in the film Leap Year. I’ve never seen this movie, so what better time than an actual Leap Year to dive right in?

Knowledge of this film:

Amy Adams falling in love with some guy who’s British. On February 29th? Andddd I’m out.

Actual IMDb description:

Anna Brady plans to travel to Dublin, Ireland to propose marriage to her boyfriend Jeremy on Leap Day, because, according to Irish tradition, a man who receives a marriage proposal on a leap day must accept it.

…. I was close. Moving on.

THIS TAKES PLACE IN BOSTON????? I NEED THERE TO BE A HORRIBLE FAKE ACCENT (odds are yes).

ADAM SCOTT IS IN THIS?? GUYS IT’S BEEN ONE MINUTE AND I’VE LEARNED SO MUCH.

Photo Feb 29, 10 22 16 PM

So Amy/Anna’s job is a realtor? Luxury type? No, she “stages” apartments. When people are selling their place, she basically set dresses the home to make it more sellable. There’s a job for this??

“We’ve got an 8:00 rezz…” Adam Scott, but also channelling Tom Haverford. I just realized he must have filmed this on a break from Parks? Or just before Parks?

John Lithgow is Amy Adams’ father??? Honestly, who else is going to pop up in this movie?

Photo Feb 29, 10 24 43 PM

Anna thinks her BF/Adam Scott is going to propose to her at this fancy dinner – reminder that this is not how you propose.

Turns out Adam presented her with a box of diamond earrings. Bummer.

He gets a call during dinner about an aorta emergency (he’s a cardiologist) and he has to leave… but also leaves her with the check??? And he’s leaving straight from the hospital to Dublin for a cardiologist conference. So, um, peace out?

Photo Feb 29, 10 25 56 PM

In Ireland tradition a woman can propose to a man every four years “That’s ridiculous” says Anna. ALSO SAYS TRACI. This movie was made in 2010, and I feel like women empowerment, feminism, etc. has made great strides since then, which makes me think this movie might not fly in 2016? Not like this was a big blockbuster six years ago, but I’m just saying a lot more people would speak up and argue how dumb this idea of chasing after a man just to propose to him on the one day where roles are reverse is stupid.

Also, they really should’ve released this movie on a leap year.

“I may have underestimated the storm just a little bit.” – the captain piloting a plane through horribly turbulence says as the oxygen masks fall from overhead.

They have to land in Wales due to the weather, which means Anna is in quite a pickle with her proposal plan.

Why did Anna wear heels on the plane? She’s dressed like she’s going to a business interview.

She is The Perfect Storm-ing it and it’s utterly ridiculous.

Photo Feb 29, 10 30 35 PM

WELL. This is why you don’t wear heels on the plane.

Photo Feb 29, 10 31 07 PMAnna ends up at a bar in… Dingle? She asks around for a taxi to drive her to Dublin, but surprise, surprise S.O.L. She has to spend the night at the small town’s inn, which happens to be upstairs and Matthew Goode is the bartender/innkeeper?

She is out of juice on her *Blackberry*, but the only place to plug it in is underneath the bed. She can’t reach it, and tries to move the bed, which leads to breaking the drapes, and knocking over a dresser and lamp. Then when she does plug in her phone, it sparks because OBVIOUSLY and she manages to cause a blackout in the inn and throughout the entire town. This is why people hate Americans.

Matthew Goode is v tall and has to duck his head when going through all the doorways.

His character is also kind of grumpy and crochety, which is the exact opposite of all the people I met when I was in a small town in Ireland. Back when I was studying abroad in college, my friends and I took a weekend trip to Ireland. We went to the Cliffs of Moher and a small town near that called Doolin, where my friend’s best friend’s family is from. We spent part of St. Patrick’s Day in this small town, and this town center reminds me of Doolin and I have all the nostalgic feels rn.

Photo Feb 29, 11 34 33 PM

“It’s a Vuitton.” Anna

“…what??” Matthew Goode LOL

Anna tells Matthew Goode (whose name is Declan, because the writers wanted to make sure you knew they were in Ireland) about her #LeapYearProposal and he thinks it’s the dumbest thing he’s ever heard. I’m with him on this one.

“What are you, the Lucky Charms leprechaun?” SICK BURN, ANNA.

God this is so picturesque and gorgeous it makes me want to go backkkk 😦

Photo Feb 29, 10 36 39 PM

Declan has been eating in 90% of his scenes so far. He’s like the Rusty Ryan of Ireland.

Anna accidentally makes their car roll back and off a cliff into some kind of marsh and what in the fresh hell. Is she supposed to be this clumsy?

Sans car, she decides to star walking with her Vuitton suitcase. A van passes by and he basically steals her suitcase and drives away. Also there were weirdos in the blacked out back. Declan warned her.

Photo Feb 29, 10 37 26 PM

Whyyyyy is she still wearing heels?

Anna and Declan end up at the same bar as the dudes who stole her suitcase, and they’re creepily going through her shit, including her underwear? Declan starts a fight and comes to her rescue which means they’re going to fall in love.

Declan’s been calling Anna “Bob”, which she now finds out means “Cash/Money”. Again, SICK BURN.

She finally gets a train ticket to Dublin, but still has two hours to kill, so she and Declan go to visit a castle, because Ireland is awesome and there’s one around every corner. He tells her the story and his fake Irish accent is so good that I can only make out half of the legend. Something about this Romeo & Juliet type couple that consummated their relationship at the castle. Who knows.

Um it looks like they’re standing in front of a green screen??

Photo Feb 29, 10 38 58 PM

It’s starts downpouring yet again and Anna slides down a giant hill. She’s really not doing well in Ireland.

Oh no she missed the train. I’m actually a little sad for her.

The cute old dude working at the train station is v sympathetic and brings them to his house in Tipperary, where him and his wife are super against couples sleeping in the same room if they’re not married, so they have to pretend they’re Mr. and Mrs. O’Brady-Callaghan.

When did Declan say Heads I win, Tails you lose. JOEY?

Yo Declan straight up beheaded a chicken with one swift motion. It’s disturbing (they don’t show it on screen), but Anna is also taken aback and says, “You just surprised me. You keep doing that.” They are faLLING IN LOVe.

“Always kiss like it’s the first time and the last time” says the random dinner guest who’s making out with his wife too much at the dinner table.

Of course old train guy then forces Anna and Declan to kiss. He very forcefully starts chanting “KISS THE GIRL” and even slams his hand on the table. This is borderline abuse mixed with uncomfortable arousal from the old dude (They give in anyways).

BTW, Declan is charging Anna for this entire excursion, and they’re currently at 675 Euros for 2 days of travelling. Prediction: she dumps Jeremy and Declan’s final line is something like, “You still owe me”.

IDK if it’s because of the Perfect Storm ref or this scene where they’re sharing a bed or both of them pretending to hate each other when clearly they’re into each other, but these two remind me of Pacey + Joey.Photo Feb 29, 11 22 15 PM

Declan overhears Anna talking to Jeremy on the phone and he is clearly jealous. He takes his homemade Irish breakfast and goes to sulk in the pantry. Reminder: Anna and Jeremy – still a couple.

“Never start a journey on a Sunday or a full moon,” says an old Irish man. Earlier someone brought up the bad luck of a black cat crossing. I was not aware this country had so many superstitions.

It starts violently hailing and they find refuge in a building which turns out to be a wedding, and Declan accidentally yells out “JESUS CHRIST!” but Anna immediate saves him and says, “-is Lord!” Truly great teamwork, kids.

The priest invites them to attend this wedding, and at the ceremony, we find out Declan used to be married. So there’s the romantic comedy secret he’s been hiding.

The blue lights at this reception are similar to the ones at the restaurant in Boston where Jeremy gave her the earrings – I don’t know whether this is supposed to be a juxtaposition or not because is this the type of movie that would do that?

Photo Feb 29, 11 01 25 PM

Someone starts spinning Anna and her HIGH HEEL accidentally falls off and flies right into the bride’s forehead, leaving her with a nasty mark. Then she accidentally spills wine on the bride’s dress. Why is this her character trait?? Amy Adams is too classy to be clumsy (name of my debut album).

Gah this is so pretty!

Photo Feb 29, 11 03 07 PMThey’re sharing a tender moment and it looks like she’s about to kiss him and it turns into vomit. Because she’s drunk from the open bar, not because she suddenly has a stomach bug.

For a brief moment Declan thinks Anna straight up left him and went on the bus to Dublin without saying goodbye and he is extremely bummed. She actually went to get them coffee, and in that moment she realizes he cares for her and it’s really sweet and I am INTO IT.

They finally make it to Dublin and it turns out his ex lives there with the guy she cheated on him with, who happens to be his friend. Rough times. Earlier, Declan asked Anna what she would grab if there was a fire, knowing her answer would be something of great monetary value (you know, because he calls her Bob). His answer is that he would (if he could) take the claddaugh ring that used to be long to his mom. The only caveat is that he gave it to his ex Kaleigh and he doesn’t have it anymore. I’m guessing this is going to come back into play later?

She offers him the cash she owes him and he only wants to take the quarter (heads I win, tails you lose).

I love you Adam Scott, but you are such a good villain/douche and he’s not even trying to be in this one!

OH Jeremy proposes to Anna right in the middle of this hotel lobby and she looks up to get Declan’s confirmation and he’s gone.

ACTUALLY this reminds me of Once. Except this movie probably has a happier/more satisfying ending.

Declan meets Kaleigh – hopefully to get the ring back? OMG is he going to fly to Boston and propose to Anna with the ring??

Apparently Declan’s bar was in danger of being closed if they didn’t raise enough money but the local barflys all pitched in and saved it? That was a random plot (unless I missed it).

Ok so in the beginning, Anna and Jeremy apply for a fancy apartment at “The Davenport”, and while they’re in Ireland (but still separated), Jeremy tells Anna they got the news they got the apartment. Flash forward to Jeremy back in Boston where they’re throwing a housewarming party in their new digs, and he’s explaining to their friends that one of the folks on the board frowned upon couples who are not married living together (callback to the lovely Irish train dude who made Anna and Declan kiss). So basically Jeremy only proposed to get the apartment?!?

Photo Feb 29, 11 07 05 PM

Anna is astonished that Jeremy did this, so after some cinematic stares over their palatial home, she pulls the trigger on the fire alarm to see what Jeremy would take (if there’s a fire, etc. etc.). He immediately tells Anna to grab “laptops, camera, whatever” and lit’rally says, “I got the video camera – I still haven’t put the proposal up on Facebook, so I’ll do that later.” And she peaces out.

Cut to Ireland and Declan’s running a bustling restaurant – how much time has passed? Is it still Leap Day? Is SHE going to propose??

Anna’s dressed like she got her dress at a knock-off Anthropologie circa 2003 and her hair even has one of those zig zag headbands from 8th grade.

Photo Feb 29, 11 40 29 PM

“Here is my proposal: I propose we not make plans. I propose we give this thing a chance and let it work out how it works out. So what do you say? Do you wanna not make plans with me?”

Um I love this. It’s reminiscent the “I’m just a girl…” line from Notting Hill. Anna basically is like, “I’m a notorious planner, but this one time I don’t want to do any of that shit and see how it works out. In front of his whole restaurant.” Appresh.

And his answer: walks out and closes a door. Awk sauceee.

“I guess that’s an Irish no.” Anna

She goes to the cliffs and you hear Declan come out of nowhere to say, “Mrs. O’Bradycallaghan. Where the hell are you going?” MRS. O’BRADYCALLAGHAN I AM INTO THIS SO HARD.

WELL WELL WELL HE PULLS OUT THE CLADDAGH RING and says, “I reject your proposal and I don’t wanna not make plans with you. I want to make plans with you.”

Ugh propose to me on these cliffs

THIS IS RIDICULOUS THEY BARELY KNOW EACH OTHER THOUGH THIS IS LEGIT THE SECOND TIME THEY’VE EVEN KISSED. JUST GET TOGETHER AND SCREW THIS MARRIAGE PROPOSAL

“It’s gonna cost you.” Declan

“Put it on my bill.” Anna

I WROTE THIS MOVIE, IT’S FINE.

“It’s good luck to get engaged on a Sunday.” Full. Circle.

Live Blog: Academy Awards 2016

Hi pals! It’s that time of year again – watching the Academy Awards and liveblogging it, despite the fact we haven’t seen half the movies. Relive the memz with our liveblog!


12:08 AM

That’s a wrap, everyone! Thanks for joining us, and please stop by tomorrow while we discuss our best and worst dressed picks! Promise we won’t list Leo 10 times in a row for Best Dressed. Probably.


 

12:05 PM

Best Picture

The Big Short

Bridge of Spies

Brooklyn

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Room

Spotlight

Traci’s Pick: The Revenant

Because Leo needs this.

Molly’s Pick: The Revenant

I will go down with this ship.

Winner: Spotlight

M: Okay, that was my second-most-likely pick.

T: Same. except I haven’t seen it.

M: Hmm. I.. well, I think I’m really happy that this is going to get a lot more focus on the abuse in the church. But strictly AS A MOVIE I wasn’t blown away, if that makes sense?

M: Chris Rock invited everyone to the BET Awards. No, but what if everyone shows up? Little Jacob Tremblay. His hot parents. Those guys with the skull necklaces. Leo. His mom.

T: What’s happening here the winners were forced to come out and literally get a golden shower

M: It reminds me of the end of the telethon episode of Full House. Ugh. I’m not even cultured enough to properly WATCH the Oscars.

T: It’s a memorable episode, TBH.

M: As was this evening. IDK, just still very happy for Leo.

WAIT. They’re playing Public Enemy’s Fight The Power. AHAHAHAHA


12:05 AM

T: I’M SO NERVOUS I’M ABOUT TO VOMIT

M: I CAN’T THINK OF NORMAL THINGS TO SAY, just Titanic quotes.

T: WIN IT FOR KATE. WIN IT FOR MR. ANDREWS.

M: FOR CORA. LITTLE CORA.

T: FOR THAT SWEET OLD COUPLE WHO DIED IN THEIR BED.

M: AND THAT MOM READING THE STORY TO HER TWO CHILDREN.

T: AND THE STRING QUARTET THAT DIDN’T STOP PLAYING

M: THEY WENT DOWN WITH THAT SHIP AND SO WILL I.

Best Actor

Bryan Cranston, Trumbo

Matt Damon, The Martian

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant

Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs

Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

Traci’s Pick: Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant

I S2G IF LEO DOESN’T WIN.

Molly’s Pick: Leonardo DiCaprio

I’LL NEVER LET GO.

Winner: LEONARDO DICAPRIO

T: KATE BUT WAIT KATE KATEEEEEEEEE

M: WHERE IS KATE.

T: HE SAID “CATON?” AND I THOUGHT HE SAID KATE

M: AHAHAHA ME TOO.

M: You know what else was about man’s relationship with the natural world? Titanic.

M: Ahhh, there she is.

Seriously, very classy of the producers to let Leo talk without cutting him off. It’s midnight EST, we’re all about to turn into pumpkins anyway.


11:50 PM

M: Current state: “Now I have the steady hand” Rachel Green.

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett, Carol

Brie Larson, Room

Jennifer Lawrence, Joy

Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years

Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

Traci’s Pick: Brie Larson, Room

The Academy could pull a surprise and pick faves Cate or Jennifer, but Brie’s been slaying left and right. It’s her year.

Molly’s Pick: Brie Larson, Room

Let’s make up for Jacob Tremblay’s non-nomination.

Winner: Brie Larson

M: And there I go again (crying, naturally). Mostly because of how beautiful and honest her performance in Room was.

ALSO: 

She just seems like a peach.

T: Just think, Brie wins an Oscar AND Jacob Tremblay. She’s also incredibly composed for just winning an oscar.

M: That’s what I said about her in the preshow – that she always seems so calm! Someone get me the number of Brie Larson’s yoga teacher or meditation…guy?


11:40 PM

M: I always feel like awards shows are the west coast’s revenge, because they usually get the raw end of live tv.

Which is to say, I’m in New York and I’m tired.

T: God bless time zones.

Best Director

Adam McKay, The Big Short

George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road

Alejandro G. Iñárritu, The Revenant

Lenny Abrahamson, Room

Tom McCarthy, Spotlight

Traci’s Pick: Alejandro G. Iñárritu, The Revenant

Two-peat for Alejandro?? Probs.

Molly’s Pick: Alejandro G. Iñárritu

Revenant was the best movie I’ve barely been able to watch.

Winner: Alejandro G. Iñárritu

M: Yay! I hope this means we hear a lot more Revenant for the rest of the awards (read: Best Actor).

T: To be clear, Kate and Leo are separated by one aisle and a Cate Blanchett. Just so we can get an idea of the floorplan for whatever happens next.

M: I’ve never more wanted to be Cate Blanchett. Or an aisle.


11:32 PM

M: Quincy Jones is one of the most powerful people in the entertainment industry but I look at him and think “wow. Rashida’s dad.”

T: same. SAME.

T: Is Pharrell’s hair blonde???

M: Confirmed: Pharrell’s hair is blonde. Somehow makes him look even MORE like an ageless vampire-person than usual.

Best Original Song

“Earned It,” 50 Shades Of Grey

“Manta Ray,” Racing Extinction

“Simple Song #3,” Youth

“Til It Happens to You,” The Hunting Ground

“Writing’s on the Wall,” Spectre

Traci’s Pick: “Til It Happens to You,” The Hunting Ground

We’re in the middle of a Gagaissance, and she’s has been campaigning for her first Oscar hard. One step closer to EGOT, Gaga.

Molly’s Pick: “Til It Happens to You,” The Hunting Ground

I don’t know any of these songs.

Winner: “Writing’s on the Wall,” Spectre

M: Truth, this was a boring-ass song and I LOVE Sam Smith.

T: Awww I’m happy for Sam despite the fact I don’t care too much for this song. *disclosure (no pun intended) we wrote that at the same time

M: 11:28 PM EST. But thanks for all your little sketches, Oscars.

Sacha Baron Cohen’s bit fell flat right?

T: WHAT YEAR IS IT, ALI G???

T: Just realized how many exes Rachel McAdams is surrounded by tonight. Two, by my count?

M: Before you finished, I was about to reply “HOW MANY EXES,” so thanks for anticipating that.


11:17 PM

T: Honestly, Jacob  Tremblay, I want to put you in my pocket and and bring you around with me all day.

M: “I loved you in Madagascar!” Jacob Tremblay, my son. (Just kidding, I’m sure Jacob Tremblay’s hot parents love him very much.)

T: Speaking hot parents – or maybe not – this Irish dude is QT.

M: Agreed.

T: The academy: “We didn’t nominate any black folks, so here are “International stars Sofia Vergara and this Korean actor I’ve never seen in my life’ presenting Best Foreign Language Film. BOOM, DIVERSITY.”

M: “I don’t think you understand, here is an ENTIRE TROOP BEVERLY HILLS OF COLOR.” – The Academy

M: Is this gonna be the year everyone realizes they love Joe Biden?

T: JOE BIDEN JUST SAID, “HEY MATT, HOW ARE YOU” AND POINTED AT MATT DAMON.

M: Man. I wish Joe Biden was running for President. Too late for Biden to be making a surprise Oscar night, pre-Super Tuesday announcement? No?

T: GOD that would be a GD dream.

M: Gaga is doing basically a fancy version of the song Paige won the talent show with on Degrassi. (IDK I’ve muted it but I’m almost positive.)

T: Really glad I didn’t wear make-up today!

M: I’m not wearing any makeup; I also had to mute the TV and read the internet instead of watching that, so I really covered all bases.


11:00 PM

M: Didn’t they used to do the honorary Oscar during the show? On one hand those always run like 20 minutes, on the other Gena Rowlands is one of the best actresses alive and I wouldn’t have minded seeing her.

T: Did you see her during the pre-show? She was talking to Ryan Seacrest and he showed her a photo of The Notebook cast and someone had to remind her what she was looking at. Bless.

M: Like, apparently, Gena Rowlands herself, I forgot that she was in The Notebook.


10:46 PM

M: On one hand, I can usually take a joke at my expense. On the other, if I were a documentary short subject nominee, I probably wouldn’t love Louis C.K. riffing on how poor and unimportant I am?

M: Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy is winning her SECOND Oscar, so whatever, C.K. The Pakistani PM said he would change the law on honor killing after seeing this documentary, so I guess I’d drive a Civic if my movie was going to do something like that.

Best Documentary Feature

Amy

Cartel Land

The Look of Silence

What Happened, Miss Simone?

Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom

Traci’s Pick: Amy

I have yet to see What Happened, Miss Simone? but Amy was truly insightful and heartbreaking, and included a lot of footage I’ve never seen before. Plus I found out I’m like two degrees away from Amy Winehouse after watching this movie.

Molly’s Pick: What Happened, Miss Simone?

I haven’t seen this, but I feel like this and Amy have been the most buzz-y and I didn’t think Amy was edited and cut all that well.

Also the way the nominee names go from shortest to longest is very visually pleasing.

Winner: Amy

M: There were 2 Amy Winehouse documentaries on Amazon and I’m starting to wonder if I watched the wrong (non-nominated) one?

M: What better way to highlight how white the Oscars are than to make fun of Asian children for being good at math?


10:33 PM

T: I am HERE for Kate and her glasses.

M: Sexual orientation: Straight + Kate Winslet In Glasses.

T: Whoa Kate Capshaw is serving with that bow tie and suit.

M: Also sexual orientation: Mark Ruffalo Winking. What? I usually hate winking.

M: Wow. I really don’t like Chris Rock’s man on the street segment. You’re not Billy. (Note: I like that he turned it into an #OscarsSoWhite thing, but the segment itself is whatever)

T: This woman with the purple wig is going to be a viral hit in approx 5 minutes.

M: Real headline on the Daily Mail right now: “Olivia Munn shows off 12 pound weight loss.” Do you really show off 12 pounds lost? Can people even tell? Because if I gain that, I go off the assumption that nobody can.

T: 12 you can totally tell, it’s 11 pounds where it’s unrecognizable.

M: That’s why you’re our Hollywood-based correspondent.

T: Also, real tweet from Stacey Dash:

M: Dionne. Shhh.

Best Supporting Actor

Christian Bale, The Big Short

Tom Hardy, The Revenant

Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight

Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies

Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Traci’s Pick: Sylvester Stallone, Creed

This is Sly’s third nomination, after getting nominated for the first Rocky as Best Actor and Best Original Screenplay. He has the best chance at winning this category, since he’s a Hollywood fave. For once, he’s not an underdog.

Molly’s Pick: Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Personally I’d vote for Tom Hardy, or maybe Mark Ruffalo, but there’s a lot of buzz about Sly and a lot of times the Academy can’t resist the sentimental pick.

Winner: Mark Rylance

T: Frreal. digging Sly’s black and blue suit. But also, his face when he didn’t win was v “ugh, you can’t win ‘em all.” ALSO I’M GETTING NERVOUS FOR LEO.

M: Was not expecting this. Obviously. Also Mark Rylance was great and I didn’t see Creed, so I’m not sure why I felt a little disappointed that Sly didn’t win.


10:19 PM

M: Bonus Jacob Tremblay’s Hot Parents sighting.

M: Are Chris Rock’s adorable daughters really selling Girl Scout cookies? I would willingly be part of a dumb awards show bit if I got cookies at the end. Especially, but not limited to, Samoas.

T: Can these girl scouts deliver to a 30-year-old woman approx 3 miles away watching Minons present an award at the Academy Awards? kthx

T: Bear Story: The prequel to The Revenant

M: 2016: not a great Oscars for people of color, AWESOME for bear-actors.

T: I’m unexpectedly tearing up at the sight of Buzz and Woody. EFF YOU Toy Story 3.

M: Oh yeah. That movie screwed me up but good.

Best Animated Feature

Anomalisa

Boy and the World

Inside Out

Shaun the Sheep Movie

When Marnie Was There

Traci’s Pick: Inside Out

Emotion if this clear favorite doesn’t win: Lewis Black. Like all of Lewis Black as Anger.

Molly’s Pick: Inside Out

Hi, still crying over this one.

Winner:  Inside Out

M: I didn’t ACTUALLY expect to tear up the instant that was announced but I ACTUALLY am.

T: Inside Out, also screwed me up but good.

M: It’s such a useful and important movie for kids, too. Like, for helping them identify their emotions – my little niece is going through a really tough time and when we were watching Inside Out for what felt like the 20th time, she said “actually, I’m sad but I’m still mostly made of joy.” TEARS. Bless this movie.

T: Did they bleep out Kevin Hart for saying “damnit” or am I making that up?

M: I thought my TV just cut out but I feel like that’s, in fact, what happened.

M: The Weeknd’s performance is like Phantom Of The Opera + Cirque du Soleil + Fosse.


10:03 PM

M: OH WOW. Ex Machina, A movie other than Mad Max, just took one of the technical awards.

M: I hope this doesn’t read as shade because it isn’t: the inventions from the tech awards sound amazing. (BTW, my sister-in-law’s uncle won one one year; it’s on his mantle and fun at Christmas parties).

M: Favorite segment of the hour: Tina Fey’s commercial.


9:54 PM

M: If I didn’t already have a headache, I’d have one after that sound editing intro. Their tactic was, I guess, to include every sound that ever appeared in the nominated films.

T : Um give these dudes a reality show about sound and skull necklaces

M: Observation: the technical winners LOVE gothic and renaissance themed accessories.
Oh God. They’re doing the thing again for the Sound Editing category. (Mad Max, naturally, wins).


9:45 PM

T: Oh boy I would not ever want to mess with Suge Knight, y’all.

T: Michael B. Jordan. what  GD DREAM MAN.

ok, get them in a romance movie pls

T: The way they’re shooting this cinematography category feel like I’m on a ride at Universal Studios.

T: Man The Revenant’s cinematography was so beautiful and breathtaking. I would’ve been so upset if it didn’t win.  

M: Likewise. I actually thought to myself “wow, this is some gorgeous cinematography” while I was watching it. (Not a thought I always have during movies.)

M: Mad Max just won for editing. Definitely going to be the biggest winner of the night, unless The Revenant sweeps the big categories.

“Mad Mad was the best reviewed film of 2015. Audiences loved it.” RUB IT IN, WHY DON’T YOU.

T: HOLY SHIT ARE THEY LAYING IN ON WILL SMITHohjk Jack Black.

T: “The Minons are on their way” FUCKING FINALLY, said absolutely no one.

M: In case anyone’s looking  for some reading during the music segment, here’s why nominee Anohni won’t be there.

(I had a moment of “I don’t know who that is,” but I do and you probably do too: she was formerly known as Antony Hegarty, of Antony and the Johnsons).


9:32 PM

Best Costume Design

Carol

Cinderella

The Danish Girl

Mad Max: Fury Road

Traci’s Pick: Mad Max: Fury Road

IDK, it’s probably impressive to create costumes for a time period that hasn’t happened yet.

Molly’s Pick: Cinderella

The costume designer has won a few times before, and that blue dress is pretty legit. But I’ve also heard Carol is all about the costumes, so.

Winner: Mad Max: Fury Road

M: Like I said before, I got maybe 20 minutes into Mad Max and I just couldn’t do it. The costumes were part of it. There was a man wearing a weird hat or a … crazy mask? …  I forget… making a proclamation on a mountaintop and I was like “I’m sorry, I tried. I cannot.”

T: Of COURSE the Mad Max costume designer is wearing a bedazzled leather jacket.

T: So there’s a big change this year with nominees given the opportunity to hand in a list of names of the people they want to thank but it didn’t happen with that woman that just won?

M: The scroll I’ve been complaining about for a half hour doesn’t even work. Sorry, Academy. You tried a new thing. Not as new as nominating people who aren’t white, but newish.

T: Is a Tina/Steve Carell reunion a subconscious way for Hollywood to know they want a Date Night sequel?

M: I’d love for Tina Fey and Steve Carrell to become a popular buddy duo, a la Tina and Amy, and make dozens of movies together.

Mad Max just won for production design. The minutes I watched were mostly deserts and jalopies, but presumably that changes.

M: Makeup and hairstyling… we didn’t do guessing but probably Mad Max again?

T: um Magic Mike XXL, not Magic Mike 2, jared leto. get it straight.

M: His strength was all in his hair, Traci.

Well. Mad Max just won again. It wasn’t a bad movie, just a movie my ears and eyeballs couldn’t put up with.

T: This portion of the show was sponsored by the Australian tourism board.

T: After introducing The Revenant as a Best Picture nominee, they shot to a bear clapping in the audience, and no one laughed. Alejandro was confused, Leo is still crying over Kate not winning, and that officially became the second fake bear joke that’s failed this awards season.


9:16 PM

T: WAIT UPDATE POEHLER IS THERE AND SHE IS A BEAUTIFUL NOBLE LAND MERMAID

M: I know prerecorded comedy bits are what make the show run over – and what I retroactively hate about the show around 11:15 PM – but I’m just so thrilled to see Leslie Jones. I also love that despite nominating only white actors, the Oscars has ended up with the largest non-white presence in the show probably ever.

M: NEVER MIND. STACY DASH.

T: That joke…. did not land…. at all. We are all The Weeknd.

M: 9:03 PM. 2 minutes of Sarah Silverman doing a James Bond bit (Sarah, I love you but I’m going somewhere with this). 11:03 PM: The actual winners of the biggest awards in film being ushered off the stage after 30 seconds.

It feels like every year there’s a song from James Bond, and (1) I didn’t know a James Bond movie came out, (2) the song is boring as hell. This year is no different.

M: For those of you only really following the main categories, Best Supporting Actress should be up next, then like 10 awards you won’t care about.

T: “My favorite song is Father Figure” ugh come on. Enough. We get it Sam Smith and George Michael are both gay and British.

M: Getting super nervous about this category. #ShipWatch2016, get your looking glass and binoculars ready.

Confession: I saw Spotlight last week when I was REALLY sick and I dozed off for about, I’d say 4-7 minutes. Which included the scene they just showed for Rachel McAdams, apparently.

Best Supporting Actress

Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight

Rooney Mara, Carol

Rachel McAdams, Spotlight

Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Traci’s Pick: Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

I haven’t seen Steve Jobs (and neither have a lot of people, I guess), but Kate Winslet is always great in what she does. Alicia Vikander was transcendent in The Danish Girl, but I low key also want Kate to win so she takes pix with her new gold statue and *fellow winner* Leo.

Molly’s Pick: Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Word on the street is the race is between Kate Winslet and Alicia Vikander. On one hand I’m tempted to go with Alicia because the Academy loves giving Best Supporting Actress to unknown young actresses, on the other hand, they called it the ship of dreams. And it was. It really was.

Winner: Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

M: I don’t like the thank-you scroll.

T: I saw The Danish Girl last week (not sick) and Alicia was really good. Did anyone see Steve Jobs? No? Ok, Kate still deserves it but whatever.

M: Based on our comments above, I think we knew it would be Alicia. I still say she’s a princess (specifically: Belle).
Maybe this is just because I majored in foreign languages, but I think it’s so fascinating how people’s accents differ depending on where they learned English: like how Alicia sounds like a mix of English with a tiny bit of Swedish, and completely different from the Swedish-Americans I know – yet you can hear the common Swedish accent underneath either the American or English accent.


8:55 PM

M: Well. It’s about time, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

(expect all the Titanic gifs)

T: This looks like the beginning of Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium (I’ve never seen it).

M: I saw it in the theatre, despite reading a review entitled ‘Mr Magorium’s Wonder Emporium Is Really, Really Bad’ (that’s true).

Not to get too Titanic (oh, who am I kidding), but there’s a majestic, booming chorus sounds like when Titanic set sail from Southampton. There’s a deep cut for those of you who owned both the Titanic soundtrack AND the Back To Titanic Soundtrack (so, other girls who were born in 1986)

T: AKA the both of us

T: I’m glad they were able to sneak Magic Mike XXL in that (necessary) montage

T: *take a shot for #OscarsSoWhite ref*

M: Chris Rock always sparks the same reaction from me as kids on the Disney Channel: yes, you’re very talented, but would you PLEASE stop yelling?

T: i just had a flashback to chris rock hosting the ’99 VMAs. *what a time to be alive*

M: Ah, yes. I remember that from the VHS tape I made where I edited out the commercials. Cool kid here.

T: “EveryBODY GOT MAD!” We are witnessing peak Chris Rock right now.

M: Chris Rock: not fair that Will Smith didn’t get nominated, also not fair Will Smith “made $20,000 for Wild Wild West.” The truth of which makes Alicia Vikander look like she may cry.

T: *take a shot for Wanda Sykes ref*

M: “Hollywood is sorority racist. ‘We like you, Rhonda, but you’re not a Kappa.’”

T: A show where it’s only reaction shots from white people after a black comedian/enne makes a race joke

T: The #AskHerMore joke made me uncomfy for like the first 20 seconds, TBH

M: ME TOO, I was getting really nervous about where he was going to take it.

Where are all the seat fillers? I counted like 10 empty seats in the front center section.

T: Wait.. “Charice” Theron? Did Chris have an Adele Dazeem moment?

M People tend to get her confused with Charice, the teen singer who used to be on Oprah a lot.

T: “Charice Pempengco among most influencial singers in Asia”

M: When did that happen?! I missed some things.

T: BTW Emily Blunt is the most beautiful with that baby bump. Where is JKras tho?!

M: I hope he’s here! Traci, if I ever  have kids, I’ll pay you $5 to never say baby bump.

T: Give me it now and I’ll promise to never say it to anyone again.

M: Is this a friendship or a series of small bets and tiny transactions? Anyone’s guess.

Best Original Screenplay

Bridge of Spies

Ex Machina

Inside Out

Spotlight

Straight Outta Compton

Traci’s Pick: Inside Out/Spotlight

I feel like Inside Out is the most original in the truest sense of the word, but Spotlight might take it since it’s more Oscar-y that Inside Out.

Molly’s Pick: Spotlight

Inside Out was more innovative, but would they give best screenplay to a cartoon – even a really great one?

Winner: Spotlight

M: I know Spotlight is an “important movie” and everything but I’ll say it: I was really hoping for Inside Out.

M: With Best Adapted Screenplay, we get to the first overwrought banter of the night.

T: Ryan Gosling, Canadian treasure – please go hang out with Rachel McAdams and make everyone pass out. Titanic and The Notebook is too much for millennials.

M: #BirdWatch2016

Best Adapted Screenplay

The Big Short

Brooklyn

Carol

The Martian

Room

Traci’s Pick: The Martian

Because who doesn’t love a good, heart-warming comedy??

Molly’s Pick: Room

It’s not easy to adapt a first-person novel to a screenplay without relying too much on voiceovers, moreso when the narrator is 5 years old. I read the books & saw the movies for both Brooklyn and Room and both were great. I guess I just want a win for Ireland either way.

Winner: The Big Short

M: Okay, that screenplay was really good. WAIT. Why are they scrolling thanks along the bottom of the screen?! Is this going to happen all night?

T: The director of Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy just won an Oscar.


8:26 PM

M: Mark Ruffalo uses his interview screen time to talk about basically every hot-button issue there is (OK, maybe just child abuse and #OscarsSoWhite). 

T: Where’s Bow Wow to accidentally throw to the live show 3 times?

M: Oh god. The show doesn’t even START for another 4 minutes. I feel like I’ve been watching this forever.


8:15 PM

T: V IMPORTANT Q: IS KATE LEO’S DATE? I KNOW HE SAID HE BROUGHT HIS PARENTS BUT WHY ARE THEY POSING FOR PIX ON THE CARPET TOGETHER BESIDES TRYING TO KILL ALL OF US SIMULTANEOUSLY

M: Who else would she be with, her husband Mr. ROCKNROLL?

(Why yes, I am still mad that Kate’s married to, not just not-Leo, but specifically someone named Ned Rocknroll)

T: Are you kidding me? We’re reporting on the fact that Chris Rock is using a RAINBOW PEN to make notes on his script?
M: Once people start filing inside, it’s like Christmas after you’ve opened presents. Fun’s over.


8:07 PM

M: First of all, Lady Gaga seems very sweet, right? Second, I feel like if you’re not into Lady Gaga, people who love her think that means you hate Lady Gaga. But sometimes you’re just not into her.

This is me saying I’m not into Lady Gaga, however I think she’s very talented and seems genuinely like a good person.

Oh, Naomi Watts. Sequins everywhere. Actually, kind of a lot of sequins this year overall? Which I love. There are so few places where you can wear sequins.

Thank the universe I’m not in a line of work where anyone will ever say that I “debuted my baby bump.” There are like 3 gross things right there.

Hang on. Jacob Tremblay posted a selfie of him and his improbably hot parents on the way to the ceremony. Cutest ever.

In the car! #Oscars With my mom @christina.tremblay and dad #jasontremblay

A post shared by Jacob Tremblay (@jacobtremblay) on

T: I’M ALREADY CRYING FOR LEO. WHATEVER HAPPENS, WE’RE ALL #TEAMLEO

M: I came up from changing over some laundry and LEO WAS ON SCREEN. I’m never washing my clothes again.

T: HAHAHAHAHAHAHA GOODBYE #SHIPWATCH2016

M: You know what, Robin? Don’t use this as a time to plug the “dream in gold” slogan. This is Leo’s time.
We should say: our #ShipWatch2016 is, in full, the Frederick Fleet Memorial Ship Watch 2016, in honor of the Titanic’s watchman, because all of our cultural references are somewhere between 20 and 104 years old.


7:50 PM

T: Um has E! stopped interviewing people on the red carpet? I CANNOT MISS KATE AND/OR LEO. #SHIPWATCH2016 (note: I have to watch E! for work ughhhh)

M: On ABC, where they’re allowed to interview people, they’re speaking to Julianne Moore. She calls Carol a beautiful movie and for a second I think “wait, wasn’t she in that?” Cate Blanchett, everyone. They don’t even look alike.

T: UGH seriously, I haven’t even seen a glimpse of Julianne Moore! This is an outrage.

M: She looks great! Her gown is black with a sequin-trimmed bodice and a sort of diaphonous skirt.

M: TINA FEY IS HERE?!  She says she “literally started clapping” when she saw Charlize Theron, which incidentally was my reaction to seeing Tina Fey.  She’s wearing purple and a necklace with lots of hearts of the ocean. Okay, or blue stones. We’re in Titanic mode tonight.T: I HAD TO SWITCH OVER BC I SAW ON TWITTER TINA IS HERE. IS AMY HERE TOO BECAUSE INSIDE OUT?!

M: DON’T START, BITCH.

(What if she is?!)

Cate Blanchett is in a mint/aqua gown with feathery floral accents. She’s another hit/miss for me but she looks like a dream.

Are you a person even?


7:40 PM

M: Kerry Washington on the red carpet… first of all, she’s so gorgeous she can take any fashion risk she wants. Which is me saying that the constructed leather bodice on her gown isn’t my fav.  But even if I don’t always love what Kerry wears, I always like what she has to say. She says she respects the people who have chosen to boycott the Oscars, but feels like she’s most useful when her voice is at the table.

Aside: Red carpet interviews are where you really see which actors are ‘thinkers’ and/or went to school before beginning their work.

Matt Damon: “It wasn’t The Revenant”. Just setting our expectations for how his night’s gonna go really early.

Jimmy Kimmel and the host riff about Matt Damon. Feels like 2008 all over again. Jimmy: “Ben Affleck, who used to date Matt Damon back in the old days…”. (His post-Oscar special airs after your local news.)


7:30 PM

M: An Academy rep on diversity, stealing lines from me after a bad grade in 10th grade math: I’ll try harder; this won’t happen next time, etc.

An early congrats to Eddie Redmayne! Because his new niece was born a few hours ago. So really, either way he’s a winner (which is good, because he’s in a tough category, and also because he would make an ADORABLE uncle. I can just see it!).


7:22 PM

M:  Brie Larson always seems so calm! She’s wearing royal blue and my first thought was that I could see her winning in that gown. There’s been a lot of champaigne and off-white lately and a real COLOR makes more of a statement.

Rooney Mara tends to seem bored, and I don’t think she is, I think she just doesn’t have a very excitable demeanor. She usually tends a bit more avant garde on the red carpet but I’m just not excited about this look. I mean she looks gorgeous, but that goes without saying. 

Would it be weird to put Jacob Tremblay on our best dressed list?


7:12 PM

M: Hi Everyone! I’m watching the ABC preshow (and as someone without cable, I’m just thrilled that there IS a preshow for me to watch).

Let me start off by saying that I’ve seen all, or almost all, of the nominees. I only made it about 20 minutes into Mad Max. I’m sure it’s great – it’s nominated and all – but not for me.

Alicia Vikander: I can’t be sure if her Louis Vuitton  is going to go over well – it has that short-long, or “mullet” (ew) thing and is sort of a lighter canary yellow. I love it though. She’s an absolute princess.

Olivia Wilde’s gown is gauzy and white with crisp pleats and a lot of skin. She’s a presenter. That’s the time you can wear something like this:

Saoirse Ronan is wearing an emerald green sequined gown, with one white and one green earring. The green feels like a call back to her first Oscar nomination. Will the earrings be a hit? She’s young and I think it’s fun. Plus she probably has dozens of other Oscars to look serious.

Saoirse confirms that she wanted to wear green all along. Calvin Klein designed her gown.