Friday, May 31, 2013

The Unhappy Wife and the Shopgirl

It was bound to happen: Cate Blanchett and Mia Wasikowska will have an affair.

Cue up the obvious: For the screen.

The two actress – both tops of each of their generations, IMHO – are set to co-star in an adaptation of the Patricia Highsmith novel Carol that Todd Haynes is directing.

The film will revolve around the relationship between two 1920s women: the unhappy, estranged wife of a rich man and a department store shopgirl dreaming of a more fulfilling life.

Haynes is expected to roll cameras in London and New York in October.


Wide Awake and Totally Unfun

The Wolfpack is back in The Hangover Part III, and I cannot help but wonder if the guys should have stayed gone.

I’ll admit that Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms), and Alan (Zach Galifianakis) are still good for a laugh here and there, but the magic of unpredictability that made their shenanigans-filled trips to Vegas in director Todd PhillipsHangover and his Bangkok-set sequel is poof for sure.

If it became evident to y’all that The Hangover Part II was running on fumes like, what...15 minutes into it, as entertaining as it is, then it won’t come as a surprise that the final part of Phillips’ always-envisioned-as-a-trilogy, uh, trilogy is essentially running on empty.

The guy took an instant comedy classic, and muddied it. And for what? Because of huge box office hubris is my theory.

Mercifully, Phillips didn’t put out another by-the-books rethread of the 2009 original as he did in 2011. He and his cast (an interview with Cooper I read online comes to mind, in particular – GTS if you are so inclined) have explained that the reason the sequel stuck to The Hangover’s model was for this culmination.


Look, I really don’t mean to bust anybody’s nuts here, and go on and on about why I don’t buy those creative-decisions reasonings, because they do tie up nicely in the end. But I’m going anyway.

It just totally bugs me – it always did, actually – that this franchise’s trilogy-ness was so surrounded by this unnecessary secrecy. It cheapened the sequel and it makes this threequel quite whatever. Which is a bummer because had the powers that be been smarter (too harsh?) about it, the overarching mythology of the Wolfpack woulda kept an interest in these movies that would have surpassed the incidental. Y know, the insta-nostalgia-fueled curiosity of seeing what sort of trouble the guys could find if they got back together one more time.

I say this because in The Hangover Part III the long con wants to pay off: We find out that the events of four years ago in Vegas were set in motion long before we met Phil and Stu and Alan and their coke-fueled, nudity-prone criminal frenemy Mr. Chow (Ken Jeong), and that that is exactly why the trio must now reluctantly journey back to where it all began to save their good ol’ buddy Doug (Justin Bartha) from a dangerous criminal named Marshall (John Goodman).

Except the long con doesn’t quite pay off. Had Phillips thought to, I dunno, pull a Mitch Hurwitz and littered his previous two movies with Easter eggs for the audience, this entire trilogy business would be easier to swallow. I wouldn’t feel duped, and I wouldn’t think the funnies – even the new ones! – seem tired.

Instead I feel like the Wolfpack outstayed its welcome, and, worse, like it tricked me into staying at the party way too long.

And I never.

My Rating **

Photo: Warner Bros.

R. Patz for Dior?

Eat your heart out, Brad Pitt.

Just like his ex Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson is getting over their break-up with some good ol’ work.

R. Patz reportedly is thisclose to nabbing a job as the new face of Dior’s fragrances for men.

And here’s the kicker: The deal is said to be worth $12 million – $5 million more than Pitt got for hawking Chanel No. 5.

Jeez. I guess the tide is turning on a generation right before our eyes, huh. Down to the smells of it.


Oh, Derek Theler...Thank You So Much!

It’s like it’s Derek Theler month up in this joint.

Twice in one week!

And why not. Those abs are spectacular (as are those lips!), and if I could I would throw them a parade (with ma mouth).

I also would like to feel that jaw and map that long torso up and down with my index finger.
But ya know what makes this pic such a H-O-T event? The fact that the actor (he co-stars on ABC Family’s Baby Daddy) is a giver. He and some of his mates on the show had a tweet-off, evidently, and since he won the contest, he gave his followers their just desserts.

I love a guy who knows why his bread is buttered.


Thursday, May 30, 2013

21 and Out

I literally was just wondering what had happened to Charice this week (what – I caught an episode of Glee), and here’s some news about the girl.

She’s gay.

Indeed, the singer reportedly came out of the closet at her 21st birthday party earlier this month.

So that’s what the artist a.k.a. Sunshine Corazon has been up to....


Update: Charice made it official on June 2, coming out as a lesbian on The Buzz, a Filipino showbiz show.

Joe Manganiello Is a Beast

In the summertime, when the weather is fine...we will have the men of True Blood gracing the pages of myriad mags in different states of undress.

And like clockwork, here’s Joe Manganiello, promoting the HBO hit and showing off his insane rippedliciousness on the pages of Men’s Health UK.

F---in A, huh.

Us Weekly has a preview of the the article, in case you are interested – but we warned: there are more pics of the actor within it.

Three words, people: Baby. Got. Back.


Death Takes a Bite(r)

We already knew that the sixth season of HBO’s True Blood will feature the arrival of Billith and some good ol’ warring.

Even more ominously for ’em fangers, a new #truebloods6 poster promises that “No One Lives Forever.

The powers that had better not be planning on killing Eric (Alexander Skarsgård). I will not forgive that.

True Blood comes back into our lives on June 16.


The Rhino Is Coming

What Paul Giamatti wants, Paul Giamatti gets.

You see, the Sideways star is hard at work on playing the Rhino, his childhood dream part, in the Amazing Spider-Man sequel.

And it looks like the guy’s gonna be hella intense. And this first glimpse at him doesn’t even feature him all thick skinned and horned up (tee hee).

Guess we gotta wait until a little closer to next May 2 – that’s when Andrew Garfield will swing on ’em big screens as Spidey again – to see Giamatti’s final look.


Recruited by S.H.I.E.L.D., Too

Just like Robert Redford, Damages star Glenn Close is ready to pay her comic-book movie dues.

Marvel has tapped the Oscar nominee to play a Nova Corps (GTS) leader in its forthcoming Guardians of the Galaxy tentpole.

Close will share the screen with Chris Pratt, Zoë Saldana, Lee Pace, Michael Rooker (AMCs The Walking Dead), and John C. Reilly.

OK, I GTSd it: Nova Corps is an intergalactic police force that patrols the Marvelverse.

I think it’s awesome that these movies are finding roles for some of Hollywood’s most iconic old guard members. Sure, they have before, most notably Tommy Lee Jones had a role in Captain America: The First Avenger. But to see TLJ in an action film isn’t surprising.

But Redford and now Close? That’s a different kind of exciting.


Wednesday, May 29, 2013

We Get It, Gisele...

That bitch!

That’s exactly what I say every single time I see a woman who just had a baby and is wittingly or unwittingly flaunting her post-pregnancy bod in front of everyone on the street, at the beach, at the office, at the store, wherever – and I’m a boy.

I do usually follow with a wowza, to be fair.

Hey, if you got it....

Which is exactly what Gisele Bündchen is doing on the cover of Vogue Brazil’s June issue. Evidently, the Brazilian bombshell was photographed for the magazine by my compatriot Mario Testino like, two months after giving birth to her daughter Vivian.

And there she is.

Damn, girl! Damn.


H.C. for U.N.C.L.E.?

Henry Cavill is about to rescue Earth from General Zod in next month’s Man of Steel, and it seems he soon could be rescuing a second hot property, too.

The powers that be at Warner Bros. are eyeing the up-and-coming about-to-arrive actor as a replacement for – get this – none other than Tom freakin Cruise in the studio’s in-the-works Man from U.N.C.L.E. adaptation.

That’s big time, yo.

Not bad, H.C.! Not bad at all. You have gone from being called Fat Cavill” to being mentioned in the same breath as on of Hollywood’s biggest stars.

You sure are showing ’em up bullies.


NPH Back with Emmy

Neil Patrick Harris did such a wonderful job hosting the Emmys four years ago, it was only natural he’d keep us waiting all this time for another go.

I get it: hosting an awards show successfully these days means people automatically want you to do it forever.

Which is silliness when you think about it.

So Harris has stayed away from Emmy, sticking with his boy Tony instead. Until now.

Yes, this year the the gals lure proved much too irresistible and boyfriends hosting both shows.

Noting that he feels honored and excited about the TV awards, Harris said, “What perfect timing – I’ll do the exact same script I’m about to use for the Tonys.

Knowing NPH, he probably could make that work.


It’s Kelly’s Turn Now

For a decade now, it has been the Beyoncé show.

It just has.

Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams have been working tirelessly to break out from under their sister of Destiny’s shadow, and while that may prove futile in the end, they have been making their own way.

Williams has a good thing going doing gospel and theater, but it is Rowland, especially, who is poised to have a breakthrough 2013.

She already (smartly) aired a healthy little bit of her Dirty Laundry” in a track off her upcoming new album Talk a Good Game. It’s not a B-bashin’ song but rather, a confession of her jealousy of Mrs. Carter’s success and, more poignantly, of her experience in an abusive relationship.

It’s not the kinda thing that will burn up Top 40 radio or get remixed for the dance floor but rather, a cred-earner.

And Rowland (also oh-so-smartly) has recruited both of her BFF for the quicker tempo You’ve Changed.” “Commander” this ain’t, either – but it’s nice to hear Rowland and her girls harmonize again. Have a sample:

Talk a Good Game comes out on June 18.


Vrooom, Vroom...Six Times a Vroom!

This past Memorial Day weekend I was part of the...lots of people that helped drive Justin Lin’s Fast & Furious 6 into its bona fides as a massive worldwide hit (to the tune of almost $260 million).

For fun, I figured I’d feign worry going into the movie theater because Id never seen any of the previous installments in this unstoppable franchise – to be honest, I just didn’t feel appealed to it: too stunt-y, too T&A-y. Why spend my jack on ’em, right?

So, even though I was definitely gonna go see it (the plan was to catch up on Netflix, but the Netflix that I get in Peru doesn’t have all the chapters I needed – #fail), I wondered would I get anything of what was going on?

Tongue planted firmly in cheek, natch.

I was assured that, much like with, say, porn, I could jump in at any time and not feel terribly lostIndeed, imagine my pleasant surprise when, after an opening scene that quickly reminded me of everything these movies are about – hella pretty outlaws, driving beyond-fast cars, usually through breathtaking locales – I did, in fact, have a pretty good grasp on the story so far.

S---, I thought, there is a story. These dumb movies aren’t pure mindless fun, they actually have plots, albeit clunky, stiffly written ones. Oh, and look, a prologue that nicely establishes the, dare I say, mythology surrounding this fast and furious folk.

How nice. Great.

Fast & Furious 6 opens with former street racer Dom (Vin Diesel, who, OK, is not hella pretty but rather, very, very watchable) and former cop Brian (Paul Walker), two former at-odds turned friends. Nay, family. They are making good on their promise to give up “the life,” sitting pretty – and in Walker’s case, sooo pretty (that dude is gorge) – in the most idyllically sun-lit corner of Spain, thanks to the millions they walked away from Rio with in the last movie.

They’re still driving their cars, but like, for fun now...for things like getting Brian to his wife Mia (Dom’s sister) in time for the birth of their baby, a.k.a. the final nail in the coffin of “the life.

Ah, but old habits will die hard, as Dom finds out after Agent Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) tracks him down, asking for help (but not really asking ’cause, you know, Hobbs is played by The friggin’ Rock) in taking down a team of mercenary drivers who have caused mayhem in about a dozen countries.

Dom, of course, explains he and his crew are out of “the life,” which is when Hobbs sweetens the deal with a sweet, sweet cherry: they help him capture this bad guy named Shaw (Luke Evans), they get Letty back (Michelle Rodriguez).

Wait, wait, hold up. But Letty is dead! It was right there in the prologue. Guess not.

Fast & Furious 6 may as well be subtitled For the Girl because like, no big duh at all, Dom and Brian & Co. (their crew includes return players Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, Sung Kang, and the beautiful and badass Gal Gadot) obviously get back in their cars to save the day and their friend. ’Cause Letty must be acting under duress, right?

Mmmaybe. But that’s enough plot – you don’t go to these movies for that, you go for the action, and this one delivers it in incredibly fashion.

There are awesome chases – and races – through the streets of London and on a Spanish highway – featuring a f---ing tank! – and mano-a-mano fights that are breathlessly ridikolous, all of which culminate on a beyond-incredibly climax on the longest airplane runway in the world (seriously, that sucker is like, interminable!), followed by an epilogue (!) that both defies metaphysics and sets up the next movie som’in’ cool.

It is all a heckuva lot of fun, and I am glad I finally hopped onto the ride – and that Hollywood banked on Evans as an actioner (the actor reportedly has gone back in the closet since coming out in 2002, an unfortunate move that like, his believability in this bad-guy role should help reverse).

Anyway, bring on Fast & Furious 7!

What? You are? Hell, if y’all promise not to break anything, give into Diesel’s wish and film the dumb thing in Peru.

My Rating ***

Photo: Universal Pictures.

Staying on the Beat

I’ll admit it: I haven’t watch Law & Order: Special Victims Unit the last couple o few years, and not just because Christopher Meloni left.

Guess I kinda outgrew it, if that makes any sense. Plus, it repeats fairly quickly in syndication. So it’s not like I can’t jump back in at some point and catch up in no time.

Especially since Mariska Hargitay’s sticking around the show for its 15th season, as the Emmy winner tweet-announced herself last weekend.

And why wouldn’t she? It’s a good gig for her – one that earned her a cool $500,000 per ep in Year 14.


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Bridget Jones Is Finally Back

Renée Zellweger, you should really start eyeing ’em donuts now for sure.

Helen Fielding’s much-teased third Bridget Jones book is finally a-comin’.

Yes, people – we finally have us a title, and that title is Bridget Jones: Mad About the Boy.

Now, Zellweger has been attached to a third Bridget Jones movie since 2009. Should she reprise her signature role, the actress will be playing a much different BridgeShe’ll be older and although quite savvy about social media, she’ll still be very much romantically challenged. And, of course, still a diary keeper.

Bridget Jones: Mad About the Boy will hit shelves on Oct. 15. Click here for a beyond-short excerpt.


Shake It Down with Kylie

Kylie Minogue is on the move.

Evidently, the Aussie pop princess is now a Roc Nation artist (that’s Jay-Z’s label), and she’s ready for us to listen to the sound of her...Skirt”?

Well, that’s the name of her new single, and it pulses, and it moans, and makes you wanna dance. Have a listen:

Funny how girlfriend keeps telling us she like, wants to shake down, down, down, even though, speaking from empirical experience, we all know she likes to take it up, up, up (the hem of her skirt, that is – it usually lives so far away from her knees it would need a passport to visit the area).

Oy with it already. Tonight, La Minogue is yours (if you play this over and over like I am right now).

Young Married Lady

Remember how once upon a time Amanda Seyfried played like, third banana to one Ms. Lindsay Lohan?

Those were the days (for L2), and the former Big Love star has come a long way from those (scene-stealing) gigs.

Seyfried’s gone from biting teen fare to big-time musicals like Les Misérables to, maybe, working with celebrated indie director Noah Baumbach in the fall.

Indeed, the actress is in talks to star in the helmer’s follow-up to the currently out Frances Ha. The new project is titled While We’re Young and has been in the works for a bit now. It tells the story of an older couple (to be played by Ben Stiller and Naomi Watts) that befriends a younger, more spirited pair.

That’s where Seyfried’s come in – she’s hoping to get scooped up for the part of a homemade ice cream maker married to Adam Driver from HBO’s Girls.

While We’re Young is scheduled to start production in the fall.


Fast Guy

From horror to heroics – say that out loud really fast. The difference is rather minimal.

In real life, though, Evan Peters will really be able to tell a change is afoot. Thanks to Bryan Singer.

Meaning the director has turned to the American Horror Story player to join James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Hugh Jackman & Co. in X-Men: Days of Future Past. Peters will be playing Quicksilver, the speedy son of Magneto.

Rumor had it Quicksilver would appear in The Avengers 2. Guess that is not the case now?