Saturday, August 2, 2014

MAN FREES BABY FROM CORNER:  Dave Holmes reviews all thirty-eight movie/tv soundtracks which have topped the Billboard charts since Purple Rain did thirty years ago this week (and for the next twenty-three weeks as well).

Friday, August 1, 2014

SPINNING TOP:  The culture brahmins at Sight and Sound, long famed for their decennial Best Film Ever survey, have compiled their first Best Documentaries Ever survey, which is topped by Dgiza Vertov's Man With A Movie Camera and Claude Lanzmann's Shoah. Errol Morris' The Thin Blue Line was the top American entry (5th place); Hoop Dreams placed 17th.

A separate directors' survey locks Titicut Follies into 6th place, and finds room for Ross McElwee's Sherman's March with the larger poll did not.
THIS SURVEY HAS BEEN NORMAN MAILERED, MAXWELL TAYLORED, JOHN O'HARA'D AND MCNAMARA'D:  According to some survey of 2000 British people, the "weirdest song lyric of all time" is The Killers'  "Are we human, or are we dancer?", narrowly edging out the distinction between Eggman and Walrus, Lionel Richie's faux-Swahili in "All Night Long," and Carly Rae Jepsen's chronologically impossible "Before you came into my life, I missed you so bad."  [Also, "The Reflex." FlexflexflexflexFLEX.]

Thursday, July 31, 2014

ENGLISH. DO YOU SPEAK IT?  All 171 times on screen that Samuel L. Jackson has used a 12-letter word alleging incest, in 3:38.
GELMAN!  All the Sharknado 2 cameos, GIF'd.  

As a reminder/warning, Sharktopus vs. Pteracuda debuts Saturday night.
I WISH: We have an Into The Woods trailer, and they're clearly going "dark and semi-realistic" (somewhat surprisingly so, for what is hoped to be a big family blockbuster, though quite similar to Maleficent) and hiding exactly what Johnny Depp will look like as the Wolf.  (Billing order, for those who care?  Streep, Blunt, Corden, Kendrick, Pine, "and" Depp.)  Not much singing in the trailer, either.  Begin judgment now.
I AM BURDENED WITH GLORIOUS E-MAIL:  After reading the first draft of the Avengers script, Tom Hiddleston wrote a gushing e-mail to writer/director Joss Whedon, calling his part "grand and epic and majestic and poetic and poetic and lyrical and wicked and rich and badass."

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

NUMEROSITY, COMMONALITY, TYPICALITY, AND ADEQUATE REPRESENTATION:  Thousands of Bar exam takers across America were unable to upload their essay responses yesterday because, I guess, no one at ExamSoft realized that everyone would be trying to use their site on the same day. Please list all possible tort and other causes of action from what's being referred to on the Twitters as #Barghazi and #Barmageddon.
IN THIS VERSION, PETER STRUGGLES WITH AN UNFULFILLING CAREER AT AN ART GALLERY:  Your Peter Pan in NBC's Peter Pan: Live! is Allison Williams--yes, she can sing.  No word on whether Zosia Mamet will play a Lost Boy.
MAYBE THIS TIME, MIA FARROW AND PHILIP ROTH WILL WATCH IT TOGETHER:  Not that we like to tell you how to spend your leisure time, but Sharknado 2: The Second One debuts on Syfy at 9pm tonight.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

YOU F----D UP.  YOU TRUSTED US:  What happens when you invite a real diplomat to help you play Diplomacy?  David Hill, a boardgame enthusiast, decided to dust off his game of Diplomacy invited Dennis Ross, a career foreign service negotiator, to serve as his coach.

Follow the story in two related pieces of media: the Grantland article and last week's episode of This American Life.
DAMN HOOVER:  The FBI will be moving out of DC's ugliest office building, and is looking at new spaces in Greenbelt, Landover, and Springfield.

Monday, July 28, 2014

ALOTT5MA FRIDAY GRAMMAR RODEO MONDAY COLUMN OF MILK EDITION:  There's apparently a grammatical error on Greg Maddux's HOF plaque. It credits him for being the only pitcher in MLB history with "300 wins, 3,000 strikeouts and less than 1,000 walks," but shouldn't it be fewer than 1,000 walks?  [Also: Oxford comma fail.]
TO THE MOON:  The NYT's Neil Genzlinger makes the shocking discovery that most "classic" tv just isn't very watchable anymore: "Sluggish pacing, wooden acting, wince-inducing jokes and obvious plot twists abound in the television of the distant and even not-so-distant past. Too much of this will turn your brain to mush as surely as too much of today’s reality TV will."

Sunday, July 27, 2014