Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Top 10 TV Characters of the First Decade of the 21st Century

10. Charlie Kelly (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia)

9. Andy Millman (Extras)

8. Ned the Piemaker (Pushing Daises)

7. Liz Lemon (30 Rock)

6. Huey Freeman (The Boondocks)

5. Capt. Malcolm Reynolds (Firefly)

4. Ben Linus (LOST)

3. GOB Bluth (Arrested Development)

2. Dwight Schrute (The Office)

1. Dr. Gregory House (House, M.D.)

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Road to the Oscars, Pt. 1

So I've compiled a list of films that I think will be nominated, with my favorites to win in bold. Once the actual noms come out, I'll post an updated list.

Best Picture:
Frost / Nixon.
Slumdog Millionaire.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
The Dark Knight.

Best Actor:
Mickey Rourke, The Wrestler.
Frank Langella, Frost / Nixon.
Sean Penn, Milk.
Brad Pitt, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
Clint Eastwood, Gran Torino.

Best Actress:
Meryl Streep, Doubt.
Kristin Scott Thomas, I've Loved You So Long.
Anne Hathaway, Rachel Getting Married.
Kate Winslet, The Reader.
Angelina Jolie, Changeling.

Best Supporting Actor:
Heath Ledger, The Dark Knight.
Robert Downey, Jr., Tropic Thunder.
Josh Brolin, Milk.
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Doubt.
James Franco, Milk.

Best Supporting Actress:
Penelope Cruz, Vicky Christina Barcelona.
Viola Davis, Doubt.
Marissa Tomei, The Wrestler.
Taraji P. Henson, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
Amy Adams, Doubt.

Best Original Screenplay:
Rachel Getting Married.
Burn After Reading.
The Wrestler.

Best Adapted Screenplay:
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
The Reader.
Frost / Nixon.

That's all I'm doin' for now. Let's see what happens when the real noms come out!

LA La Land

so I moved to LA yesterday. It's nice to have basically my own place. I'm dripping with lethargy right now though, so...whatever.

Also, I've been accepted to review music for Kevchino.com; pretty soon my reviews for Animal Collective's Merriweather Post Pavilion, Gang Gang Dance's Saint Dymphna, and Santogold's Santogold, will be up.

Also also, I got Joy Division and Radiohead posters, a Blackalicious t-shirt, and a new Neutral Milk Hotel vinyl, all at Amoeba.

Win? Yes.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Top 20 People of 2008

The 20 best people of the year, conveniently in list form!

20. Dennis Kucinich. For hangin' in there. For bein' a stand-up guy. For gamely trying to impeach Bush like three months before the end of his term. For seeing UFOs. For secretly being a lvl. 12 lawful good elf wizard.

19. Charlie Day. For being the best thing about It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. For Green Man. For being the second closest thing we have to a 21st century Kramer. For "Day Man." For being the wild card.

18. Anderson Cooper. For being Anderson Cooper.

17. Paul Rudd. For being incredibly funny. For being a good-lookin' fella. For making Role Models funny. For Wet Hot American Summer, which was years ago, but whatever. For Forgetting Sarah Marshall.

16. Hillary Clinton. For keepin' up the game. For being Secretary of State. For breaking glass ceilings and stuff. For dealing with Bill.

15. Rainn Wilson. For actually being the 21st century Kramer. For Dwight. For Dwight. For Dwight.

14. Amy Poehler. For the Hillary Clinton impersonation. For The Mighty B. For marrying GOB Bluth.

13. Any Olympic athlete except Michael Phelps. For not being Michael Phelps. Fuck Michael Phelps.

12. Samantha Brown. For making me interested in going to Berlin. For going everywhere cool ever. For, along with Anthony Bourdain, making the Travel Channel awesome.

11. Tunde Adebimpe. For being a generally cool guy. For the new TV on the Radio album. For the old TV on the Radio albums. For being named "Tunde Adebimpe."

10. Danny Boyle. For Slumdog Millionaire. For having great taste in music. For Trainspotting and 28 Days Later too. For Sunshine too.

9. John Stewart. For being the smartest man on television. For making the news palatable. For mugging the camera and being super Jewy.

8. Mikey Rocks / Chuck Inglish. For spearheading the actually kind of cool "hipster rap" movement. For naming their group "the Cool Kids." For being fashionable, cool people.

7. Paul Krugman. For being a way left economist and getting the Nobel Prize for it. For laying the smackdown on George Will about the Great Depression. For having a sweet beard. For being a smartass.

6. Stephen Colbert. For being the best newsman currently on television. For expertly parodying Papa Bear Bill O'Reilly. For crying on Election Night.

5. Jon Hamm. For Mad Men. For proving that the early 60s were actually awesome. For being a smooth, cool motherfucker.

4. Tim Russert. For being a sweet, cuddly newsfellow. For being approachable and easy. For leaving us nothing but a legend and a pretty corpse, like Jim Morrison.

3. Tina Fey. For being the smartest person on television, just ahead of John Stewart. For 30 Rock. For Sarah Palin. For being a cutie.

2. Heath Ledger. For the Joker. For being the 21st century James Dean. For Brokeback Mountain. For being a better actor than anyone probably realized.

1. Barack Obama. For being elected president. For being elected president as a black man. For being elected president as a black man, and also being awesome and JFK-life.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I Don't Care How "Trendy" This Seems

But I have a serious man crush on Ezra Koenig from Vampire Weekend. He's just an incredibly stylish, good-looking man.


iTunes Celebrity Playlists

So I've been trolling the iTunes celebrity playlists looking for people that I could conceivably get along with. Here's what I've discovered:

Danny Boyle (director, 28 Days Later, Trainspotting, Slumdog Millionaire) has incredible taste in music, as does Rainn Wilson (The Office).

Kat Dennings has better taste than Michael Cera, and seems more clever too.

The Daily Show Correspondents listen to pretty crappy music, as does the entire cast of Entourage except, weirdly, Adrien Grenier.

Mike Myers is a Neutral Milk Hotel fan. Who knew?

Carlos Mencia is an ass, officially in every way now.

Vince Vaughn listens to a lot of country, but like cool country, old Merle Haggard stuff.

Alan Cumming (probably best known as Nightcrawler from X-Men 2) likes "No Diggity" by Blackstreet because it makes him think of bending girls over and slapping their asses, "in an ironic, modern-man sense of course."

Jason Bateman likes Belle and Sebastian and Pixies!

Wes Anderson has a predictably awesome list; so does the Schwartzman.

Zefron and V-Hudge have terrible taste, and can only name like five songs between them. I can't say I'm surprised.

Jason Lee's isn't bad.

John Cusack's list inexplicably has Bob Hope on it, and two Gnarls Barkley songs. And on that note, I haven't really listened to The Odd Couple, but Gnarls' first album, St. Elsewhere was unjustly overlooked. Skip "Crazy" and check out "Just a Thought," and you'll see what I mean.

Anyway, I'm over that. I just thought it was a fun diversion. Nighty-night and all that.

A Wild and Crazy Guy

I've always had some mixed feelings for Steve Martin. The Jerk is one of the funniest movies I've ever seen, and from what I've heard of his early stand-up and SNL work, he was sort of a genius. Plus, he was often on The Muppet Show, which is awesome. But nowadays...Cheaper by the Dozen? The Pink Panther? These aren't just bad; given who made them, they're embarrassing.

However, Steve Martin is also an author. Sometimes his books become movies that are better than they should be (Shopgirl), and sometimes they do not (all of the other ones). His most recent, though, is his memoir Born Standing Up, a lucid and clever account of his early years, from his being a Disneyland employee on up to The Jerk and beyond. In reading, I realized something: this is where Steve Martin's been. It's like he's sleepwalking through the movies he's in and pouring all of his talent onto the printed page. A few excerpts:

"[Mitzi, my girlfriend] had been swept away by director John Frankenheimer, who, twenty years later, tried and failed to seduce my wife, the actress Victoria Tennant, whom he was directing in a movie. Mitzi was simply too alluring to be left alone in a foreign country, and I was too hormonal to be left alone in Hollywood. Incidentally, Frankenheimer died a few years ago, but it was not I who killed him."

"I learned a lesson: it was easy to be great. Every entertainer has a night when everything is clicking. These nights are accidental and statistical: Like lucky cards in poker, you can count on them occurring over time. What was hard was to be good, consistently good, night after night, no matter what the abominable circumstances."

I could find more, but I won't. I'll simply urge you to read it, because it's a quick read, and it's hilarious, and it's poignant, and it's oh-so-worth it.