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Mickey Mouse Disco

Hey, it’s easy to sit around and watch a Disney flick from the past couple of decades and say how the studio has sold out, seemingly focusing more on having a sappy clutch of hit songs and tons of fast food merchandising for their films instead of focusing more on the quality of the features themselves, but back in 1979 there was Mickey Mouse Disco.

I remember this damned commercial vividly and begged my mom to get it for me. Man…$9.98 for the LP AND two bonus albums? Where ya gonna get a deal like that anymore? However, I finally got my copy at Woolworth’s and was more than happy. For Disney stuff at the time, this one wasn’t too bad, and a couple tracks actually still stand up, but it’s the commercial that still seals the deal for me. At over two minutes long, you know everything you need here. Ah, the good old days…

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American Idol: Here We Go Again

Last night’s “American Idol” results show was less fluff than usual, more results…but two of the results were surprising, one bordering on shocking, at least to me. That can only mean that those idiots who purposely mess with the voting are at it again (you losers know who you are). Either that, or America is just ignorant.

So first they did some bit on Simon Cowell blatantly flashing the “L” for loser sign to either Ryan Seacrest or various others during the auditions. Whatever…we all know he’s a wiseass.

Then came the ’70s medley, which did one thing in particular…it exposed how bad some of these singers really are.

Okay, on to the results Read the rest of this entry »

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Lost 4.5 – The Constant

Seeing as how I wasn’t a particularly big fan of the last Desmond time travel episode (“Flashes Before Your Eyes”), I was wholly expecting not to enjoy tonight’s episode either. In fact, that’s exactly how it was panning out until the story took an unexpected turn that no one could have seen coming.

The story begins where episode three left off. Frank, Sayid and Desmond are on their way to the freighter, and while the storm they’re currently flying into doesn’t look that inviting, Frank is insistent on l following the exact coordinates they used to get to the island. What they don’t realize, however, is that flying through said turbulence has some unexpected side effects, and before you can say “Saving Private Desmond,” the surly Scot has awakened in the middle of a military barracks, clean cut and unaware of his surroundings.

When he snaps back to the present, Desmond completely freaks out – recognizing neither Sayid nor Frank. As it happens, Desmond can now time travel (sort of), and when the helicopter lands on the freighter, he’s taken to sickbay to get checked out. It’s there that he meets George (Fisher Stevens), one of the freighter folk who seems to be experiencing the very same side effects. Unfortunately, between jumping back and forth in time, and arguing with the boat’s crewmembers Ray (Marc Vann), Keamy (Kevin Durand) and Omar (Anthony Azizi), Desmond can’t figure out what’s happening to him.

Lucky for him there’s a physicist (Daniel Faraday) on the island, and after speaking with him over the SAT phone, it’s revealed that not only does Desmond believe it’s 1996, but that his recent exposure to electromagnetism (via the hatch explosion) is the reason he’s reacting this way. Confident that he can help, Daniel orders Desmond to board a train (in the past) and visit him at Oxford where he used to teach. When he arrives, Desmond finally gets some answers from Daniel – but they’re not exactly to his liking.

Read more after the break.

Read the rest after the jump...

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American Idol: Ladies Night = Crap Night

When Simon Cowell declared Tuesday night that this season’s “American Idol” was David Archuleta’s to lose, he wasn’t joking. Not only did young David out-class every one of the guys, he left every lady in the rear view mirror as well, because for the most part, they did not deliver the goods on Wednesday night. Here is a recap….


Carly Smithson went first last night, and in the little bit about “what viewers would be surprised to learn,” said she tends bar at an Irish pub in San Diego. I wasn’ t surprised, were you? Anyway, Carly sang Heart’s “Crazy on You,” and for me it was a bit too shouty. But by the end of the night, Carly sure looked good compared to the rest of the field. Randy said it was rough at the start but got better, Paula said Carly is a great singer, and Simon said it was better than last week, and that no other woman in this thing can touch Carly vocally. He may be right.

Brooke White strapped on her guitar and sang Carly Simon’s Read the rest of this entry »

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Jericho 2.3 – He’s back! (And so is he, and so is he, and…)

First off, if you didn’t see last week’s write-up, there’s a perfectly good reason for that, but to find out what it is, you’ll have to click here.

Are you back? Excellent. Let’s move on, then, shall we?

Hey, everybody, Dale’s back! I always thought the guy was a little squirrelly because, well, he is squirrelly. But, wow, the guy’s really grown up over the course of the past few months. One trip to Missouri, and he’s become a man. And by “man,” I mean he’s actually about one evil look away from being a full-fledged bad-ass. I think I’ve said it before, but, seriously, you don’t want to be around that guy when he’s finally fed up.

Y’know, I’ve heard some people say that D.B. Sweeney is too damned likable to accept as the devious Goetz, but, personally, I think the combination of this against-type performance and a disconcertingly dark second season of “Jericho” makes him exceptionally off-putting in the role…which I mean as a compliment, if that wasn’t evident. Jake’s hatred of Ravenwood is understandable, given his history with the organization in Iraq, but it doesn’t take long for the majority of the town to turn against them when they start screwing with Dale’s shipments of the Hudson River Virus vaccine. (More on that in a moment.)

Hey, everybody, Jimmy’s back! Or, to put it another way, “Narc, narc, who’s there? Jimmy!” Not that we should’ve expected him to anything other than tell Beck what he knew about Sarah Mason, but what wasn’t expected was the way Hawkins decided to handle the situation: by bursting into Beck’s office and saying, “You’re killing my investigation!” It’s actually a good ploy, given how readily Hawkins has had lies spill forth from his lips during the course of the series, but in this case, it’s for the greater good, as he attempts to pick and choose bits and pieces of the facts at his disposal in order to sway Beck into realizing that the government isn’t telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. It’s a slippery slope he’s treading, but Major Beck’s conversation with Thomas Valenti was clearly sufficient to sway Beck into believing Hawkins’ story. And as long as we’re speaking of Beck, I like him a little more each episode, especially after the scene with him and Heather in the waning minutets of the episode

Hey, everybody, Dr. Dhuwalia’s back! The guy’s not a very good liar, though, and he’ll clearly break under pressure at the drop of a hat. Still, I love the character, so I’m glad to see him return. Plus, even though he’s got the kind of loose lips that sink ships, the whole issue with the virus made for great drama, from the transmission Heather received that clarified just how bad things had gotten to the tension-racked scenes in the warehouse.

So Bonnie’s going the Kerouac route and hitting the road with Jennings & Rall, eh? Well, we did get our first full-fledged CBS’ing of Season 2 with the way the music swelled during the front porch conversation between Stanley and Bonnie, but we also got a bit of heretofore-unrevealed information about how Stanley and Bonnie lost their parents, and I’m sure fans – like, say, myself – enjoyed getting those details. It’s nice to see that the cute girl from J&R seems to have some scruples; at least it looks like Bonnie will be in good hands.

So who’s this mysterious person on the other end of the line from Hawkins…? Time, as they say, will tell…

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American Idol: Should They Just End The Season Now?

Okay, so maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration, but seriously, if you saw David Archuleta on “American Idol” last night, you have to admit the kid is clearly the favorite to win it all. I mean, just, damn. Anyway, there were in fact nine other guys who sang last night, so let’s recap using our usual formula:


The theme was ’70s, a decade that had some incredible music. David Archuleta, all 17 years of him, ended the show with John Lennon’s “Imagine.” Even before he took the stage, I was afraid that it was not a good song choice. I mean, it’s a pretty simple tune. But young David gave what was maybe the performance of his life. Before he did though, they showed footage of him singing six years ago in a hotel lobby during Season 1 of the show, to the likes of Kelly Clarkson, who was blown away by an even younger David. You have to think now it’s in the cards or something. Anyway, Randy said it was one of the best vocals ever on the show, Paula said it was “ridiculous,” but in a good way because she started crying, and Simon said David is the “one to beat.” In-freaking-deed.


It was a night for the Davids of this thing. David Hernandez Read the rest of this entry »

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Will Ferrell’s Highs & Lows

Will Ferrell’s never been one to show much concern for his questionable script selection. He pretty much does whatever he wants – from streaking in his tighty whites to wrestling bears (twice) – and gets away with it. Since breaking in to the business in 1998 with the “SNL” sketch-turned-feature film “Night at the Roxbury,” Ferrell has been all about quantity over quality. Over the course of the last decade, the actor has appeared in no less than 25 different projects, and for every career highlight like “Anchorman,” there’s been a box office flop like “Bewitched” to balance it out. Surprisingly, Ferrell’s been able to escape such disasters virtually unscathed, but just because Hollywood is willing to forgive him doesn’t mean we are as well.

In honor of his latest film, revisited the actor’s best and worst cinematic performances of his career. Check out the list here, and then be sure to come back and discuss.

Will Ferrell

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Yacht Rock 11 – Footloose

In which we learn the tale of how Kenny Loggins was finally duped by Jimmy Buffett into writing a song for a movie. Featuring Jason Lee in his most hilarious role ever as Kevin Bacon. Enjoy.

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Oscar recap: We need a montage, or Cate was jobbed

I was having a chat with Film School Reject and Fat Guys at the Movies co-host Kevin Carr last Friday about the Academy Awards. I naively thought that, because of the writers’ strike, this year’s show should be pretty brisk because they won’t have time to prepare any elaborate bits. But Kevin set me straight: he said, because the producers are doing the majority of heavy lifting, the show will be filled with self-congratulatory, back-slapping puff pieces.

Smart guy, that Kevin Carr.

I had an All-Star lineup of writers at my house last night, including Carr, fellow BE critic Jason Zingale, Film School Rejects editor in chief Neil Miller, Nights and Weekends EIC Kristin Dreyer Kramer, and From the Balcony EIC Bill Clark. About 20 minutes into the broadcast, all of us were singing Trey Parker’s “We Need a Montage” song. Holy cow, are the members of the academy proud of themselves. Here are some wacky moments from Oscars past. Here are a bunch of Best Actress winners. Here are a bunch of Best Actor winners. Here are ALL of the Best Picture winners. Thank goodness, then, for Jon Stewart’s tribute to periscopes and binoculars.

As for the awards themselves, there were some pleasant surprises and some pleasant non-surprises. I was thrilled to see Brad Bird get an Oscar for “Ratatouille,” likewise Javier Bardem getting the Supporting Actor award for “No Country for Old Men.” Marion Cotillard snagging Best Actress was a nice shocker too, as was “Falling Slowly” beating three songs from “Enchanted” for Best Song. Mega-bonus points to Stewart for bringing Marketa Irglova back out on stage to say her thank-yous after the orchestra drowned her out.

Something must be done, though, about the academy’s tendency to vote for someone in a category just because they liked the movie and want to make sure it gets some kind of recognition, even if the person in question doesn’t exactly deserve it.

Tilda Swinton, I’m looking at you.

My jaw hit the floor when Entertainment Weekly listed her as the favorite to win. Did they see the movie? She wasn’t all that memorable. Not that she was awful or anything, but between her, Clooney and Tom Wilkinson, she was easily the weakest link in “Michael Clayton,” and she sure as hell was no Cate Blanchett in “I’m Not There.” This isn’t grade school, people; if someone doesn’t deserve an award, you don’t give them one just because you don’t want the movie to get shut out. Really, Swinton winning is a joke. It’s like took over Price Waterhouse for a day. I would rather have seen Ruby Dee win than Swinton, and Dee had no business even being nominated. How many lines did she even have in “American Gangster,” six?

By the way, the group and I casted three biopics last night. Casey Affleck should play David Byrne, Amy Adams is the perfect person to play Kirsty MacColl, and Tilda Swinton as…David Bowie. Admit it, you were thinking it too when you saw her fiery red hair.

The producers of the Academy Awards know that their show has a reputation for being unnecessarily long. The strike gave them the perfect opportunity to correct that. They didn’t take it. They made montages. Lots and lots of montages. And in their “honor,” I present them with “The Montage Song.” Boneheads.

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Kids Incorporated getting physical

Yeah, I probably don’t have to tell you how creepy seeing Kids Inc. cover “Physical” by Olivia Newton-John is after all these years, but just watch and cringe for yourself.

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