Monday, November 30, 2009

They Say They Didn’t

What’s Thanksgiving without a little relationship drama, right?

Yesterday, rumors spread regarding a possible split between Reese Witherspoon and Jake Gyllenhaal, talk, btw, that was quickly kiboshed by her rep, who called the story “false.”

The two actors first started dating after they met while making Rendition some two years ago.

Ah, for Jakey to be on the market.... I mean, good for them!

Photo: PeopleStyleWatch.com.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Ah, to Have Been a Centerpiece at That Table....

Brad Pitt exes, Jennifer Aniston and Gwyneth Paltrow spent Thanksgiving in Morocco. Together. Ish.

The actresses attended a gala to celebrate the re-opening of Hotel La Mamounia in Marrakech.

I wonder what, or who, they talked about...if they talked about anything. I understand the two are friendly but hardly BFF.

Photo: UsMagazine.com.
Guy Jumps to It

Guy Pearce has joined the cast of the thriller Hungry Rabbit Jumps, starring Nicolas Cage and January Jones.

I like my thrillers with a dash of Pearce, who was sooo good in Memento.

The movie, which starts shooting in New Orleans next month and is due out next year, follows a man (Cage) who resorts to hiring a vigilante group after his wife (Jones) is brutally assaulted.

No word on whether Pearce will play a good guy or a bad guy.

Photo: TheCinemaSource.com.
Carla and Woody, Sitting on a Film Set...

French First Lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy has been cast in Woody Allen’s upcoming (and so far untitled) film.

A successful singer-songwriter and a former model, Bruni-Sarkozy will play a supporting role in the movie, which is scheduled to shoot in Paris next summer.

“I don’t know for what role but I said yes,” she said. “Perhaps I will be very bad.”

Oh, I don’t know, ma’am. Woody Allen has a knack for getting his supporting actresses a lot of awards love, so if you can survive the shoot, and by that I mean people’s snickering – because you know they’ll say the move isn’t becoming of a woman in your shoes, politcally speaking – then you should do A-OK.

Photo: MyBeautyMatch.com.
The List, Pt. 13

In: Italy.

So Five Minutes Ago: Brazil.

O-V-E-R: Great Britain.

Photo: The Karpel Group.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A-Ma-Zing!

How fantastic did the Obamas look last night at their first state dinner at the White House?

Also, you know you throw a good party when people crash it.

Photo: People.com.
So Sly, So Charming

For years, Wes Anderson has been delivering idiosyncratic work of the most interesting, intriguing, and amusing kind – like Rushmore and one of my faves, The Royal Tenenbaums.

His films have been, in essence, cartoons come to life, odes to the quirks of his wondrous imagination.

With the critically acclaimed Fantastic Mr. Fox – a film that, yes, I’ll say it, is pretty frakkin’ fantastic – his take on on Roald Dahl’s 1970 children’s book, Anderson delivers his most fully realized film, one poised to be appreciated by a mass audience, for it is so winning.

The stop-motion animated tale of the restless Mr. Fox is a triumph. It’s got humor, high jinks, adventure, heart, and smarts. Kids and adults alike will enjoy it so.

It also has a stellar voice cast that includes George Clooney in the titular role, Meryl Streep as the long the long-suffering Mrs. Fox, and one of Anderson’s most valuable players, Jason Schwartzman as little Ash Fox.

They may inhabit a flat, animated world, but Mr. Fox and his friends are phenomenally lifelike, which gives Fantastic Mr. Fox texture and nuance, both in its look and its storytelling.

The Foxes are living an idyllic home life with their son Ash when they receive young nephew Kristopherson (Eric Anderson), whose arrival coincides with former star chicken thief-turned-journalist Mr. Fox’s renewed interest in the life.

He’s a wild animal, you see, and he can’t be helped. Plus, the way he figures it, he doesn’t have very many fox years left in him, and he wants excitement back in his life, no matter what anyone, including Mrs. Fox, has to say about it.

But by reawakening his old habits, he endangers not only his beloved family but the whole animal community by going after the three most powerful farmers in the land, Boggis, Bunce, and Bean.

Trapped underground without enough food to go around, the critters band to fight the evil humans, who are determined to capture the audacious, fantastic Mr. Fox at any cost.

Seeing Mr. Fox get himself in a jam is entertaining enough alright.

Watching him pull it together and come out the other side is priceless, especially when you see it through Anderson’s eyes. Fantastic Mr. Fox is stamped with his visual signature, which has never suited a film more absolutely.

My Rating ****

Photo: Fox Searchlight Pictures.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Madonna to Get with Guetta

French DJ David Guetta has revealed that he is planning to collaborate with Madonna.

“I would love to work with Madonna,” he
said, “It will probably happen very soon, [but] it’s all in the early stages and I’m not allowed to speak about it yet.”

Guetta has quite a terrific track record when it comes to collaborations, so I hope this ends up happening.

Photo: TheSun.co.uk.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Back in the Yard

There are a lot of racy photos of Kelis out there – just Google the lady.

Hip-hop’s bad girl has dropped a new single, the retro disco-tinged “Acapella,” and I likey. I likey a lot.

According to Kelis’ Web site, she’s nearly completed work on a new album. I’ll wager she’ll have a hit if it has more of this....

Photo: DrJays.com.
She Is

One of the most simple, most winning performances at this year’s messtastic American Music Awards was delivered, of course, by the Queen of Hip-Hop Soul, Mary J. Blige.

MJB, whom I heart, sang her latest single, “I Am,” a mid-tempo ballad that I can only describe as a you-appreciate-me little ditty:



She’s just the best, ain’t she.

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Greatest Play

Nicely done, Sandra Bullock – with The Blind Side you’ve completed a late-in-the-game pass to movie audiences everywhere that should make us all but forget All About Steve and remember what great promise you pledged for 2009 with The Proposal.

There’s a good reason why Bullock’s been one of Hollywood’s MVPs for years, and that’s because, mostly, she knows how to give people what they want. Today’s based-on-an-incredible-true-story The Blind Side is just that, and perhaps her best shot at some top-shelf awards love as well.

At least at the Golden Globes.

The perfectly timed movie – Thanksgiving is just around the corner – features the actress as Leigh Anne Tuohy, the no-non-sense driving force behind a well-to-do Memphis, fast-food-restaurant-chain-owning family.

Yes, she’s beautifully blond, and salty and a total whip, but her shade of blond radiates from within with the light of her heart of gold, which at first glance is carefully protected by an impenetrable barrier of apparent hoity-toityness.

The day before Thanksgiving, Leigh Anne and her picture-perfect family – which includes her man-behind-the-woman-and-happy-to-be-there husband Sean (played by Tim McGraw), daughter Collins, and son SJ – are driving home from SJ’s Turkey Day school play when she spots, and at first dismisses, the boy everyone calls Big Mike (Quinton Aaron).

Big Mike is a gentle giant of a 17-year-old black kid from the wrong side of town, the product of a broken home and a school system keener in passing him along than in actually making an effort to teach him anything.

It’s raining and it’s cold, and he seems directionless, so Leigh Anne reconsiders – it’s like she’s fated to give him a second thought – and takes him home.

He ends up spending the holiday with the Tuohys, and pretty soon, he becomes one of them, a part of the family.

Taking a genuine interest in him in spite of her so-called friends’ snickering, Leigh Anne clothes and feeds him, and helps him realize and fulfill his potential – and she also starts calling him Michael (he hates being called Big Mike), thus empowering him to blossom, at first in the class room and in his relationships with others, and then as a star high school lineman.

The changes in Michael are reflected in the Tuohys’ lives. As Leigh Anne sees it, though, he’s the one who’s changing her and them, not the other way around.

Michael, as you may know, is a character inspired by Michael Oher, now a successful NFL player.

His story is nothing short of incredible, a total feel-good jolt of energy, a believe, as told in The Blind Side, that we can all add up to something tremendous with a helping hand.

Seen through cynical eyes, the movie’s a little too good to be true, a bit earnest, and quite disingenuous. But believing is what this season is all about, and I loved every bit of it – especially how much Bullock’s character reminded me of myself.

My Rating ***1/2

Photo: Warner Bros.
The Body Won’t Quit

Heidi Klum is such an overachiever.

The Victoria’s Secret stunner was supposed to host the company’s annual catwalk extravaganza, which taped last night in New York, but she turned heads and made jaws drop to the floor when she strutted her beyond-sexy stuff down the runway – just six weeks after welcoming daughter Lou.

Wonder woman or what!

Photo: People.com.
Darn!

There go my Thanksgiving plans.

I totally was planning on finally catching up with TV’s Friday Night Lights over the Turkey Day break, mostly because I think it’s time I sit down and watch Taylor Kitsch in action, y’ know, but now I’ve come to find out that the actor will be
warming the bench for at least a good part of the show’s fifth season.

Kitsch, you see, has a sizzling movie career, and he will be off filming John Carter of Mars, while the beloved football drama is in production.

Bummer much?

Oh, whatever – I’ll still catch up. Better late than never, huh, and it’s Taylor Kitsch, after all. He’s reason enough to do anything.

Photo: Flickr.com.
The List, Pt. 12

In: The return of TV’s Lost.

So Five Minutes Ago: Missing the show.

O-V-E-R: Being confused by it.

Photo: TenGossip.com.
The Beek Is Back on the Market

Bittersweet News Alert!

James Van Der Beek has filed for divorce from his wife of nearly six years, actress Heather McComb. The couple separated earlier this year.

Ah, if only he could end up with Joey Potter in real life, after all....

Photo: MoviePlayer.it.


Not Ready to Purr, Either

Just like Rachel McAdams, Anne Hathaway is reportedly not in talks for the role of the bad girl Black Cat in Spider-Man 4.

“There are no negotiations underway,” the Rachel Getting Married Oscar nominee’s publicist said.

However, he (cleverly) declined to comment on whether or not the actress had met with the franchise’s producers.

Seems to me like this fourthquel’s a hot little project, huh.

Photo: ShoppingBlog.com.
Torn

I’m not into the so-called “Twilight Saga,” so the opening of The Twilight Saga: New Moon is less of an event for me as it is for some of you.

The movie franchise based on the Stephenie Meyer books doesn’t interest me – I find it inferior to, say, anything Joss Whedon ever dreamed up, and honestly, I think of it as quite puzzling and borderline upsetting.

The story is rather simple and appealing (on paper): Teenaged girl Bella Swan (Kristen Stewart, the most reluctant movie star I’ve ever seen) moves to a new town, meets brooding vampire Edward Cullen (Robert Pattinson), the dreamiest of them all – that is, natch, in last year‘s first installment – they fall in love, find it a forbidden situation…and make it work.

Cut to New Moon, the second entry in what is to be an aggroying series of movie and an even more eh series of tab covers chronicling the hookups and whatevs of its central cast.

In this long-awaited and expertly marketed, slightly better second chapter, the romance between the mortal and the vampire soars to a new level as Bella delves deeper into the mysteries of the supernatural world she yearns to become a part of (seriously...more on that slice of dysfunction in a hot sec) – only to find herself in greater peril than ever before.

Early into the movie, directed by Chris Weitz (The Golden Compass), who takes over Catherine Hardwicke (whom I think delivered a so-so movie and made her actors looked sloppy), Edward dumps Bella, to protect her, sending her down a rabbit hole of depression and disappointment.

Having said that, he appears before her whenever she finds herself in dangerous situations (a total mind-f---, no?), which is something he kinda sorta made her promise she’d avoid, which in turns makes her seek the thrill of peril even more…y’ know, so he will appear to her and all.

This brings her closer and closer to a childhood BFF named Jacob (a beefed-up
Taylor Lautner, looking annoying as hell and in serious need of a burger he’s so shitless and ripped up all the time), a boy harboring a secret of his own.

Spoiler Alert! He’s a werewolf.

Bella, a friend of Jacob’s says, is “good with weird,” which to me, I must say gathering from the movies so far, means she has some issues/fetishes she needs to look at but quick.

I mean, she’s head-over-heels in love with a dead guy, who dumps her unceremoniously, and then she’s attracted to a beast, and totally worst of all, saddled with a cheestastic mythology and dialogue that feels more alienating than inviting. (The fact that Stewart looks completely over the whole thing only makes matters worse.)

Note to the screenwriter in charge of this stuff: Keep the story disconnects in mind. I didn’t read the books – sorry…I so am not a 13-year-old girl. You can’t just like, glance over important details about the characters. And not to nitpick, but I think there is a giant plot hole in the whole Bella-goes-to-Italy sequence, and it involves Edward being able to feel her coming, which is something I thought he could do.

But whatever.

The central conflict of New Moon lies in the distance between Bella and Edward, and how it affects her relationships with those around her, and how it tears her between her one true love and her options.

Which brings me to the question: Am I on Team Edward or on Team Jacob?

To which I say I’m not on either. If I had to pick, I’d say I was on Team Jane.

Jane is one of
the Volturi, a powerful, organized coven of vampires who enforce the laws of their world. She’s way more interesting than anyone else.

She’s a deadly little thing, and I cannot wait to see more of her. It’s a real shame she makes her appearance in the last act of the movie, for she, as played by Dakota Fanning, enlivens the movie so.

I’ll say this much: New Moon is a much better offering than Twilight, but it still had me yawning and bored.

My hope is that this franchise will turn out to be the sort that needs to be watched in sequence, y’ know…all four chapters in a row. The next one, Eclipse, is due out next summer.

Today’s offering certainly didn’t thrill me. But it intrigued me. So I’m willing to come around just as long as it doesn’t totally suck the fun out of me any more than it has, or make me roll my eyes.

My Rating **1/2


Photo: Summit Entertainment.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A Girl, a Boy, and a Beach

Next spring, I will give Miley Cyrus, and she can thank Aussie newcomer Liam Hemsworth for it.

Disney’s gold girl will star in The Last Song, a new movie made out of a Nicholas Sparks bestseller, about rebellious teenager who’s sent to a Southern beach town spend the summer with her estranged father (Greg Kinnear), a concert pianist.

There she meets a hottie, and coming-of-ageness happens:



The Last Song opens on April 2.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The First Lady

Jennifer Hudson is set to play Winnie Mandela, the former wife of South Africa’s first black president, Nelson Mandela, in the upcoming Winnie.

“I was compelled and moved when I read the script,” Hudson said. “Winnie Mandela is a complex and extraordinary woman and I’m honored to be the actress asked to portray her. This is a powerful part of history that should be told.”

The biopic will be based on the Anne Marie du Preez Bezdrob biography Winnie Mandela: A Life. Production is scheduled to begin in May in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Transkei, and Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela served 18 of his 27 years of imprisonment.

Smells like awards bait for the Dreamgirls Oscar winner....

Photo: SheKnows.com.
He Is Sexy, and He Is a Man, But...

People has named Johnny Depp the Sexiest Man Alive for the year.

Mmm...no.

I mean, I see the appeal, but the magazine could and should’ve chosen any of the other stars it included in its 2009 list for the top title, like Ryan Reynolds. Or Jake Gyllenhaal. Or long-overdue David Beckham.

Oh, and kudos for including fresh meat like Glee’s Matthew Morrison and Mark Salling.

But...uhh...where’s Daniel Craig? I didn’t see him at first online glance....

Photo: People.com.
I Will Be Glad to Call Him Doctor!

Robin Thicke released the video for his new single, “Sex Therapy,” and I have to say...I feel turned on:



I do have to say, though, that as sexy as the video is, it kinda left me underwhelmed.

It could’ve been a sexier video in the sense that I wish Thicke had opted for a storylined video, you know what I mean.

I miss videos that said something, that added something to a song.

The Thickster needs to transcend his material. I think that’s why people haven’t taken him to the top of the charts.

And we all need to pick up his newest album, Sex Therapy, when it comes out next month.
Look What They Can Do

Stuart Townsend, a.k.a. Charlize Theron’s main man, as well as Ray Stevenson and Tadanobu Asano, has signed on to co-star in Kenneth Branagh’s Thor.

The trio will play Warrior’s Three, a group of Asgardian adventurers who fight with the Norse hero.

Thor – which also stars Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins, and Chris Hemsworth in the titular role – will hammer its way into movie theaters in May 2011.

Photo: Ingenue.com.
The Vamps Always Rise Again

The CW has announced plans to run a Vampire Diaries marathon of the first 10 episodes next month.

The hit show will dominate the network’s primetime schedule between Dec. 14-Dec. 18, with back-to-back episodes on each night.

If you haven’t been keeping up with the the People’s Choice Award-nominated drama, which has made stars out of Nina Dobrev and the insanely ripped Paul Wesley (pictured at right, on the left – got that?) and given us Ian Somerhalder back, then now is your chance.

Photo: SheKnows.com.
Blast from Carrie Bradshaw’s Past

In case you couldn’t help but wonder, it was only a matter of time….

Before Sex and the City was a hit HBO show and a healthy and well-dressed movie franchise, it was a book, and now its author Candace Bushnell has penned two prequels, the first of which is coming out next spring.

The Carrie Diaries, written for a young adult audience, is a novel told from the perspective of our heroine in her teen years – when she wore Candie’s? – and goes on sale April 27.

I anticipate that The CW will option the rights in about five seconds ago….

Photo: EW.com.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Big O’s Vote of Confidence

Oprah Winfrey is putting her magic touch to good use.

The Big O
will launch a daytime series for one of her favorite people, cutie patootie designer Nate Berkus, next fall.

Berkus has been appearing on The Oprah Winfrey Show since 2001 and hosts his own show on her satellite radio channel.

How much am I totally watching Berkus’ show?


Photo: InsideSoCal.com.
Not Meowing Yet

Rachel McAdams is shutting down blogosphere talk that she’s been cast to play a villain named the Black Cat in Spider-Man 4.

“That’s a total rumor,” she said. “I was hanging out in Toronto the other day and someone came up to me and said, ‘I just heard you’re doing [it].’ And I said, ‘Really? No one told me!’ It’s not true.”

A rep for the franchise’s studio confirms McAdams’ account: “It’s an Internet rumor, as so many things are these days.”

Don’t give up hope, though, nerds!

Photo: InStyle.com.
To Answer or Not to Answer

Pop’s It Girl, Lady GaGa, just won’t quit: Girlfriend’s on a mission, and she has a new single to prove it.

Her latest, “Telephone,” hit the WWWs yesterday, as did the video for her collaboration with Beyoncé, “Video Phone,” by the way.

I kinda feel it...it’s definitely like, poppiest effort yet, right?

Photo: EW.com.
Cruising the Park

Multi-hyphenate hottie Justin Theroux is joining TV’s Parks and Recreation in a major recurring role later this season.

The actor, who co-wrote the screenplays for Tropic Thunder and the upcoming Iron Man 2, will play a friend of Ann’s (Rashida Jones) and a potential love interest for Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) on the comedy. His first episode is slated to air in early 2010.

I’ll say it because I’m that shallow: Theroux’s an in-the-looks-department improvement over Louis C.K., who’s been romancing Poehler on the show, but then again, I was very into that sweet rapport the two have.

But I’m totally open to seeing Leslie make a play at this stud, you know what I mean.

Photo: MannyTheMovieGuy.com.

Update: Also set to romance Poehler on the show after the holiday break? Her real-life husband, Will Arnett.

The Arrested Development alumnus will play an MRI technician and a second possible love interest for Poehler’s luckier-in-love-by-the-minute character (Arnett will appear in the same episode as Theroux.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Bitchiest of Reunions

Following their solo appearances on The CW’s Melrose Place, original-flavor tenants Daphne Zuniga (Jo), Josie Bissett (Jane), Thomas Calabro (Michael), and Heather Locklear (Amanda)
will reunite in the infamous apartment complex in an episode set to air early next year.

As in all together. In the same scene.

Je. L’a. Dore!

I’ve liking the reboot so far, but after tomorrow tonight I’m sure I’ll be more than liking it since Locklear will have
reprised her signature role and all will be A-OK with the TV world:



So glad the bitc...I mean, Heather Locklear’s back.
The Prinze of 24

Day 8 of TV’s 24 is a-comin’, and Freddie Prinze Jr.’s gonna a be a big part of it.

The actor (pictured at right with Kiefer Sutherland) is set to play Cole Ortiz, the head of field operations for a reconstituted CTU in New York City, where the action takes place in the upcoming season.

“We’ve attempted to call him a young Jack Bauer, but he really is his own character,” said executive producer Howard Gordon, who added that much of Prinze’s storyline will concern his character’s romantic relationship with fellow CTU Dana Walsh (Battlestar Galactica’s Katee Sackhoff).

“We’ve got a really interesting story to tell with these two,” Gordon said. “What we learn in short order is that she may not be who she says she is, and it has to do with her past, which comes back to haunt her. This wonderful Boy Scout is about to learn that the woman who he’s about to marry – she’s kind of the perfect girl – has secrets.

“In the tradition of 24, work and personal lives don’t mix.”

Photo: EW.com.

Friday, November 13, 2009

A Whole New World

Roland Emmerich’s
2012 is the rarest of movies: a summer blockbuster…in fall.

I’m going to keep this short because this disaster movie is review-proof, y’ know, and ’cause at 158 minutes, the movies runs a heckuva lot longer than it should, which you needn’t think about it too much.

The premise is simple: The world as we know it is coming to and.

What – did you expect something else from Emmerich, he who gave us Independence Day and the global warming warning The Day After Tomorrow?

The movie opens in the present day, as a couple of scientists (one played by Chiwetel Ejiofor) discover that massive solar flares are producing nomalies with the Earth’s inner crust (or was it its core? or both?).

Or something like that.

Soon, the American government is warned, and we flash forward three years, to a date around that which the Mayans
predicted (ish) will be the end of our days: Dec. 21., 2012.

What follows is a race against time for survival, and we go along for the ride with John Cusack and his estranged family, which includes his ex-wife, played by the never-more-lovely-or-misplaced-in-a-big-money-maker Amanda Peet.

We meet a cuckoo puff (Woody Harrelson) who knows more than the powers that be would like him to, a beyond-noble POTUS played by Danny Glover, and his self- and good-of-the-richest-serving chief of staff (Oliver Platt).

Everyone everywhere’s scared and coping with a kept-secret apocalypse, for never before has a date in history been so significant to so many cultures, or to so many religions, scientists, and governments. The world is changing literally under the name.

Unfortunately, 2012, which was delayed from summer for whatever reason, isn’t the kind of epic blockbuster adventure that will leave satisfied.

Sure, the special effects are awesome, and the thrill pieces are fantastic (see L.A. break apart and Vegas burn, and lots and lots of people perish but good!), and there’s even a little
eye candy thrown into the mix for good measure, but 2012 is much too long for its own good.

But then again, it doesn’t matter any what I say. It, like the plausibility of its story, will be huge.

My Rating **1/2

Photo: Sony Pictures.
The List, Pt. 11

In: “
Je. T’a. Dore.

So Five Minutes Ago: “I die.”

O-V-E-R: “Loves it.”

Photo: Best-Damn-Blog.blogspot.com.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Simply Irresistible, Pt. 61

Well, now I’m sad that ABC’s Eastwick is no more because that means Johann Urb is out of a job.

I discovered the Estonian actor just last night when I saw the trashtastic 2012, which comes out tomorrow.

Urb plays a Russian pilot in the movie with an accent that’s so totally out of control, it’ll make you wish he’d just shut his trap and sit there looking pretty, but hey...beggars can’t be choosers.

Up next for Urb is a movie called Pornstar in which he plays a character who goes by Cannon Balls.

Looking forward to it much?

Photo: Bestof.Provocateuse.com.
My Gods!

And thus began the Let’s Make Sam Worthington a Super-star Project yesterday with the release of the Clash of the Titans trailer:




The movie, which co-stars Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes, is set to hit theaters March 26.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Closing Shop on the Dolls

Fox giveth, Fox taketh (be warned, Fringe!).

The network has pulled the plug on its sophomore drama Dollhouse, meaning it will not be ordering more of Joss Whedon’s low-rated drama starring Eliza Dushku beyond the current 13-episode order.

At least Fox plans to air those episodes once the show comes back after November sweeps.

“I don’t have a lot to say. I’m extremely proud of the people I’ve worked with: my star, my staff, my cast, my crew. I feel the show is getting better pretty much every week, and I think you’ll agree in the coming months,” Whedon said in a statement. “I’m grateful that we got to put it on, and then come back and put it on again.”

Sad now.

Photo: SciFiCool.com.
Loco for Almodóvar

I cannot wait to see Pedro Almodóvar’s latest, film fest fave Broken Embraces, even though reading its
synopsis is an exercise in getting confused.

But after watching the film’s trailer, and seeing the director’s muse du jour, Penélope Cruz, I feel charmed in the moodiest of ways.

Broken Embraces is due out in limited release on Nov. 20.

Photo: ThePeoplesMovies.wordpress.com.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I Keep on Fallin’…

By no means am I a big Lady GaGa fan, but that’s all beginning to change a bit.

I’ve been liking the pop upstart’s “Bad Romance,” but now that the video for the single’s out, I’m loving it…and her a little more (kudos for rockin’ those insane Alexander McQueen shoes, girl!):



The only thing that would make this video, which is already on fire, better would be if it, too, featured Alexander Skarsgård.
M Does D&G

Madonna is so over Louis Vuitton.

The Queen of Pop is set to be the face (and hot body) of Spring 2010 Dolce & Gabbana.

Actually, that’s what M spent last Friday (my birthday) doing: shooting the ads with BFF Steven Klein.

Said D&G (pictured at right with their muse and her bf, Jesus Luz) of their choice: “As [our] Spring/Summer 2010 collection returned to the Italian roots of the brand, evoking its strong heritage and revisiting iconic pieces such as the corset, it seemed only fitting that Madonna, who embodies both the strong sensuality of the brand and who shares an Italian heritage with [us], should be the one to showcase the Sicilian-inspired collection.”

I. Need. To see. Photos. Now!

Photo: NYMag.com.
The Guy Wants to Vamp It Up

Sean Faris (TV’s Reunion, Never Back Down) is headed to Mystic Falls.

The actor has signed on to appear on multiple episodes of The CW’s The Vampire Diaries. He will play Ben, an ex-high school football star-turned-bartender at the characters’ hangout.

“He’s Matt’s [Zach Roerig] buddy,” a show insider revealed. “He gets entangled in the group when a broke Matt takes a job at the Mystic Grill.”

Faris also may romance one of the show’s pretty ladies, but mum is the word on which one.

Photo: AndSantasGoToWar.xanga.com.

Monday, November 09, 2009

The Fringe Revolution Needs Ya

Fox is standing behind Fringe for now, but the cult fave needs something badly to survive: more viewers.

“The mood on set and in the writer’s room is as good as the ratings are bad, which is to say, wonderful,” said the sophomore drama’s boss, J.J. Abrams. “Luckily, Fox has been insanely supportive, for which we are deeply grateful.”

But if I know Fox – here’s to you, Firefly and Wonderfalls! – I know that it’s fickle bitch, so I think it’s time we make Fringe appointment television.

And Dollhouse, too, while we’re at it.

Photo: EW.com.
I’m Going for Jackson

Cheyenne Jackson has a new record out, kids.

The Power of Two is his duets disc with crooner/pianist Michael Feinstein.

Get it while it’s hot and listen to Jackson sing, say, Gershwins’ “A Foggy Day.”

Swoon to the square!

Photo: BroadwayWorld.com.
A Bag for Art

Marni has created a signature dots canvas bag, with leather double handles with silver studs and a leather label that reads “MARNI FOR MIAMI,” to be sold exclusively at the Marni boutique in the Miami Design District next month during Art Basel Miami Beach.

The label is big on the arts, evidently.

In its effort to support Miami’s local art institutions, the powers that be created the MARNI FOR MIAMI program, holding benefit shopping nights at its Magic City store for institutions such as the Miami Art Museum and the Bass Museum, with a percentage of sales being donated to each museum.

And now fashionistas and art lovers can combine their passions in one stylish way.

Photo: Karla Otto, Inc.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

G.P. Gets Her Freak On

Gwyneth Paltrow will join Nicole Kidman in The Danish Girl, an adaptation of the David Ebershoff novel about the first post-operative transsexual.

Loves it.

The adaptation will follow the relationship between transsexual Einar Wegener (Kidman) and his wife, Greta (Paltrow), who stood by her partner through the sex-change operation.

Thomas Alfredson (Let the Right One In) is directing a script by Lucinda Coxon.

Now, this is the kind of heavyweight project G.P. should be involved with more often....

Photo: HarpersBazaar.com.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Ch-ch-ch-ch-Choices

Richard Kelly has got to be the most intriguing filmmaker working in Hollywood these days.

And the most frustrating.

The – kick me in the shin for using this word – auteur’s latest, The Box, is a creepy, suspenseful thriller starring Cameron Diaz and James Marsden that definitely won’t catapult him back to the top of moviegoers’ or critics’ lists, a spot he got to know after his beloved Donnie Darko, a.k.a. his cult hit calling card, but it will get ’em talking.

Except that’s precisely what I can’t do too much of, lest I spoil the movie for ya.

In The Box, Diaz and Marsden play Norma and Arthur Lewis, a suburban couple living in 1976 Virginia with their son, and facing the ultimate moral dilemma when they receive a gift (of sorts) that bears irrevocable consequences.

The Lewises are, on the surface, the epitome of an American family, but,y’ know, they’re struggling. They’re attractive, and loving, and together, but…she’s a private high school teacher who endures cruel taunts from bratty students (because she has a limp, but a whole lotta dignity), and he’s a NASA engineer who can‘t catch a break.

One fateful day, a small box is left on their doorstep, without instruction. Later that day, both Norma and Arthur receive pieces of bad news at work that threaten to shake their livelihoods.

But by nightfall, they finally learn what the box does, thanks to an explanation from one Arlington Steward (an at-his-spookiest Frank Langella).

With the push of a button, they will receive $1 million. By the power of that push, someone they don’t know somewhere in the world will die.

The caveat: They only have 24 hours to confront the depth of their own humanity and make their decision.

The will-they? suspense is resolved fairly quickly, but the nature of the ramifications of their choice propels the movie down a veritable rabbit whole of what-the? moments, which makes The Box a better movie for a night at home.

I mean, I’m still scratching my head I’m so kinda puzzled over the nature of the titular artifact, and all the mind control, teleportation, and body function manipulation writer-director Kelly throws into the mix….

For that, I say rent the movie…or better yet, rent the first season of TV’s Fringe. And also, nice try, R.K., but next time, dial down the crazy.

My Rating **

Photo: Warner Bros.
Charlize Goes Mad

Oscar winner Charlize Theron wants a piece of a franchise – Aeon Flux didn’t it, after all – so she’s stepping onto Mel Gibson territory.

The actress has signed on to star in Mad Max: Fury Road, the fourth installment in the Mad Max franchise, set to start shooting Down Under late next August.

She joins Tom Hardy (RocknRolla) who also has been cast in the George Miller-produced/written/directed movie.

No word on whether Gibson will return to the role that launched his career.

Photo: People.com.

Update: What? Sam Worthington may play the Road Warrior?
Almost Famous...Yesterday

It starts today for Gabourey Sidibe.

That’s a name that we’re going to be hearing more and more now that Precious has opened in limited release.

Click here to read (and watch) the profile that CBS News Sunday Morning did on the young actress earlier this week.

You in love yet?

Photo: Flickr.com.
The List, Pt. 10

In: Aliens.

So Five Minutes Ago: Vampires.

O-V-E-R: Apocalypses.

Photo: AccessHollywood.com (V).

Thursday, November 05, 2009

What About Sam?

Frakkin’ Johnny Depp.

OK, not really, but I gotta blame someone.

The actor is in talks to join Angelina Jolie in the thriller The Tourist (Jolie herself replaced Charlize Theron).

Depp would play an American tourist, while Jolie will take on the role of an Interpol agent who involves him in her quest to find a criminal who was once her lover.

The upsetting part? Depp would be replacing Sam Worthington, who left the projects, along with director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck (The Lives of Others), reportedly over creative differences (Alfonso Cuarón is rumored to be in the running to take the helm).

Production is set to begin in February.

Photo: MTVTr3s.com.

Painted in the Town

Dear Leighton Meester,

I totally heart your new single, “Somebody to Love,” featuring Robin Thicke – especially the way he says “putty cat” – but girl, you seem to have overdone your makeup for the video:

I can’t wait to see the whole thing, though….

XOXO

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Angels: The Next Generation

Victoria’s Secret is introducing a new crop of Angels.

The new girls who will rule the catwalk during the company’s annual fashion show in New York on Nov. 19 are Emanuela de Paula, Lindsay Ellingson, Candice Swanepoel, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, and Chanel Iman.

They join a beautiful roster that includes Heidi Klum, who will host the show this year (she just had a baby, and The Body does need time to get back in shape, y’ know); Adriana Lima, who is pregnant and due next month; Alessandra Ambrossio; Miranda Kerr; Marisa Miller, who will wear the new Victoria’s Secret $3 million diamond-studded bra created by Damiani; and Doutzen Kroes.

I wish the show was in Miami again.

Photo: NYMag.com.
The Return of the Immigrant Worker Furniture!

La Toya Jackson’s scene in Sacha Baron Cohen’s Brüno, which was removed from the summer movie before its release after the death of her brother Michael, will see the light of day, after all.

The scene, in which La Toya and Brüno treat immigrant workers as furniture (much like he did with Paula Abdul) while he tries to get MJ’s phone number from her cell phone, appeared in early screenings of the film. It now will be
an extra on the movie’s DVD.

I’m laughing already.

Photo: Universal Pictures.com.
A Salt-y Role for a Salty Gal

Next year, Angelina Jolie will get back in the summer blockbuster business with the spy thriller
Salt.

The actress will play Evelyn Salt, a CIA officer accused of being a Russian sleeper spy.

Salt, natch, goes on the run – how very Jason Bourne, how very Ethan Hunt (hey, Tom Cruise was supposed to play the Salt role at one point….) – and uses all of her mad skills to elude capture, protect her family, and prove to everyone that she’s being set up:


Salt opens on July 23.
Chris Martin Is Not Cad

Oh, G.P. – he didn’t mean to cause you “Trouble.”

Chris Martin’s rep is denying a new tabloid story that claims the Coldplay frontman recently was seen “totally making out with Kate Bosworth in front of other people” at an unnamed event, thus cheating on his wife of six years, Gwyneth Paltrow.

“This story is entirely untrue,” said the rep.

Phew. That would not have been a fun GOOP....

Photo: TomSheehan.co.uk.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

The Oscars Get Two Hosts

Hugh Jackman’s such a man, it’ll take not one but two people to fill his shoes as the host of next year’s Academy Awards.

Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin have been announced as co-hosts of this season’s Oscar telecast on March 7.

That’s right – co-hosts...and I kinda love it.

Martin has long been a favorite Oscar host of mine, and Baldwin’s pretty “Dyn-o-mite!,” too. So I’m looking forward to seeing what the It’s Complicated co-stars will do together.

Photo: EW.com.