Archive for the T.V. Category

Auto Focus: In which I talk about Willem Dafoe some more

Posted in movies, T.V. with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 29, 2010 by Parker Connell

Willem Dafoe is a great actor. He is never really bad in any flick, even if he’s in bad movies.

This sucks, but Dafoe is still pretty good

However, Dafoe works best in good movies alongside good actors and other than Dafoe Auto Focus has an incredible cast of character actors and actresses, Maria Bello (A History of Violence) Rita Wilson (Jingle All the Way), Ed Begley Jr. (Pineapple Express) and That Guy from Wayne’s World (Wayne’s World) but the star of the show is Greg Kinnear as Bob Crane.

A little bit of history. Bob Crane was an actor and radio DJ who after years in background/supporting roles got his big break starring in the 1960’s prison camp comedy Hogan’s Heroes. I’ve seen a few episodes of Hogan’s Heroes and I must say that it’s quite funny and Bob Crane certainly was a great comic actor. This is the perfect role for Greg Kinnear because Crane was obviously presented as a clean-cut all-American family man, which is Greg Kinnear’s bread and butter.

"I'm a really the nicest guy ever according to every movie I've ever been in."

Then Bob Crane meets an A/V superstar named John Carpenter (not the Sci-fi/action movie maker_. John Carpenter worked for Sony and got all sorts of new gadgets including home video cameras.

Carpenter, Crane and a British dude from Hogan’s Heroes started hanging out at strip clubs, where Bob liked to unwind first by playing drums in the house band and later by cheating on his wife (Rita Wilson) at John Carpenter’s “pad” where carpenter filmed them in a very leering, creepy sort of way.

By now you probably realize that John Carpenter is played by Willem Dafoe, I mean is there an actor alive who does leering and creepy better than Willem Dafoe?

Answer: No, no there isn't

So instead of being a bio pic about an actor and his work, Auto Focus is about a relatively famous dude, his sex addiction, and his creepy best friend who enables that addiction. Bob Crane as portrayed in this flick is a sex addict* making Bob Crane sort of an old school David Duchovny, except I’m sure it was way more surprising to find out about Bob Crane’s sex addiction.

I mean look at this guy, doesn't he just give off that kind of vibe

Greg Kinnear and Willem Dafoe should go down in cinematic history with other great best friend duos, Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon, Paul Newman and Robert Redford, and Gumby and Pokey. These two dudes kick ass, well actually they don’t, they have this gross symbiotic relationship where Dafoe needs Kinnear to get ladies and Kinnear needs Dafoe to get him equipment so he can film himself doing ladies, but through all of this despicable behavior Kinnear and Dafoe make you give a shit, you care about their friendship, even though you shouldn’t because you know it ultimately ends up in a very bad place. I mean it’s based on a book called The Murder of Bob Crane.

Auto Focus was directed by Paul Schrader, who wrote Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, The Last Temptation of Christ and a few others that I have heard are great, as well as directed American Gigolo and the movie where Jeff Goldblum has to pretend to be a dog for Willem Dafoe in order to survive the holocaust. What I’m saying is, this guy knows his shit, so it may look like Auto Focus would be a lesser work in comparison to his other works, but Auto Focus really is good enough to hold it’s on in that list.

* I believe this films portrayal of Bob Crane because it’s based on a book by Robert Graysmith who is the dude who wrote the book Zodiac which was the basis of the great movie Zodiac in which Jake Gyllenhaal plays Robert Graysmith*

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Dr. Death: A Movie About An Alright Guy

Posted in HBO, T.V. with tags , , , , , , , on March 17, 2010 by Parker Connell

Just found this trailer for the HBO movie “You Don’t Know Jack” about the life and times (well maybe not the life but probably the times when he was killing people because they were really sick and didn’t want to live in extreme pain) of Dr. Jack Kevorkian.

Al Pacino (Gigli, Two for the Money) is playing Jack Kevorkian, now recently I haven’t been impressed by Pacino (like most people) but in the 40 seconds or so in that trailer he doesn’t do his Scent of a Woman yell once, so that’s kind of a good thing. Still we must remain wary of this man’s abilities of late.

"I was once considered to be the best actor ever"

Regardless of Pacino I’m looking forward to this, I saw another HBO movie about doctors, Something The Lord Made with Mos Def and Alan Rickman about the first black heart surgeon, and that was really good, plus the Kevorkian story is really interesting to me, the idea of a dude euthenising other dudes for the good of all is really interesting and pretty cool.

Mos Def acting the shit outta Rickman and cutting the shit outta hearts

Anyway HBO makes some pretty good movies and the cast for this one looks pretty good, plus Barry Levinson makes pretty good movies.

except for this

and this

also this is a pretty awful movie

The Wire: A Very Special Crime

Posted in T.V., Video Game with tags , , on March 15, 2010 by Parker Connell

I love The Wire, it’s probably the best show ever made and most certainly the best I’ve ever watched. I think the five seasons perfectly encapsulated and told the story of the characters and the City of Baltimore, I don’t think it needs any more episodes, but maybe Mr. Simon could bring Bunk, McNulty, Pryzbylewski, Lester, Kima and the rest of the gang back for one more season that takes on this: The Mayor of Baltimore embezzled money and used gift cards meant for the poor on an Xbox 360.

Think about it HBO, maybe make it into a movie.

Six Feet Under Season 3: Attack of the Dude from The Rocker

Posted in T.V. with tags , , , on February 4, 2010 by Parker Connell

Seems okay

Okay so I’m like 5 or 6 episodes into the third season of Six Feet Under and it’s really good. I just wanted to be on the record as saying that Rainn Wilson is like really creepy in this and like this weird flirtation he has between the old lady Fisher is extraordinarily eerie. That being said great acting job by this guy, not surprising though his shit in the last Mimzy was equally off the chain.

This is not an image from The Last Mimzy

On a totally not Rainn Wilson point, I purchased the third season on DVD from Amazon.com and when I got them I found they were old Blockbuster rentals, just thought it was cool that I could get a season of a television show (well I guess it’s not television… it’s HBO) for less than 10 bucks because a corporation is slowly going out of business as it’s business model slowly dies a protracted painful death like Pee Wee in the Buffy movie.

If any other random things pop into my mind whilst enjoying Six Feet Under I shall keep you updated

Batman by way of Omar

Posted in movies, T.V. with tags , , on December 31, 2009 by Parker Connell

So I have spent almost the entire winter break watching The Wire on DVD. Though I have not yet completed the series, I am a mere 7 episodes away, and I can safely say it is one of the best things I have ever looked at.

Like many people I have heard from on the topic of The Wire, including President Obama apparently, my favorite character is Omar, the bad ass homosexual stick up dude, I am not here to discuss Omar however, I am here to discuss Batman.

But first an explanation: In episode 4 of season 5 Omar is back in Baltimore and he is pissed, there is a scene where he sneaks up on and beats up a dude, and I thought “Holy shit this guy needs to be Batman!”

Seriously look at this guy, he is a bad ass, scary dude, and in the show Michael K. Williams proves he can portray a smart, meticulous thinker and strategist, does that sound like anybody else in pop culture? Thats right The Caped Crusader.

We’ve had 2 good Batmans, or would that be Batmen?, (Bale, Keaton) an extremely bland one (Kilmer) a gay one (Clooney) and one that everyone loves (West) I think it is about god damn time we had an African-American Batman. So once Nolan is finished with his Batman story and Warner Brothers has waited a couple of years before deciding the world requires a fresh version of the dark knight up on the silver screen, my hope is they go to Michael K. Williams.

Random Assortment of 2009 Favorites

Posted in movies, Music, T.V. with tags , , , , , , , on December 23, 2009 by Parker Connell

Favorite Album of 2009

Where the Wild Things Are – Karen O and the Kids

I should probably dedicate more than just a few sentences to my favorite album, however, I am not very practiced in the art of writing about music. I would just like to say that in a year of really good albums (new releases from Flaming Lips, Clipse, and St. Vincent, and Karen O’s other release It’s Blitz with Yeah Yeah Yeahs come to mind) The soundtrack to Where the Wild Things Are stands head and shoulders over them all. The first time I listened to the album I hadn’t seen the movie, and I still loved it, despite spending the entire time wondering how it would work inside a movie. Then October 16th I saw the movie, and god damn, it worked. Stand out tracks for me are Hidaway and Worried Shoes (a cover of a Daniel Johnston song), they are slow-moving pieces of music that really show off Karen O’s voice.

Favorite Moment of Sheer Comedy

Talking Penis – Bruno

Really the moment starts when Bruno (Sacha Baron Cohen) announces his exclusive interview with Harrison Ford, which lasts just long enough for Mr. Ford to tell Bruno to “Fuck Off”. Then comes the most uncomfortably hilarious thing filmed in a long while, Bruno’s swinging penis set to thumping European techno. I roll on the floor laughing each and every time I see it.

Favorite Thing I saw on T.V. in 2009

TIE: Dayman Cometh – It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia & Jenna’s Gibbon – 30 Rock

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and 30 Rock are probably my two favorite comedy shows of all time and the Dayman Cometh musical is one of the most inspired moments of Sunny, one of those moments in t.v. that rewards constant viewership and close attention to old jokes ( like a good episode of Arrested Development). Every song in the play calls back some old joke or moment from past seasons.

Jenna’s Gibbon is my other favorite t.v. moment because it’s a Gibbon, it wears clothes and it’s the epitome of win! Also there is a moment in the episode where the Gibbon is in an elevator and it wants Jenna to pick it up, and when she does it makes this “OOOEE” sound that is heart meltingly adorable.

Favorite Moment of Sheer Insanity

First 96 minutes of Crank 2: High Voltage

Yes, that is the entire runtime of the movie, this movie, if you haven’t seen it is BATSHIT MOF**KING CRAZINESS, if you have seen it, then you know what I mean. So I’ll keep it short and simple like Crank 2 and say GO WATCH THIS MOVIE RIGHT NOW.

Favorite Musical Concert I Went To In 2009

Hazards of Love Tour – The Decemberists

Only concert I went to this year sadly. It was still pretty good, the opening act Blind Pilot was also really good.

So I guess thats some of my small favorites from this past year. Tune in later when I post my least favorite things!