Saturday, September 19, 2015

PAGING MS. COSMOPOLITAN:  Nathan Rabin, on Grease 2:
Grease 2 is a tough film to evaluate because the very qualities that make it objectively terrible also make it a whole lot of fun. The songs here stand out because they are thoroughly, mesmerizingly, hypnotically, adverb-inducingly idiotic, not because they’re good, but because they lodge themselves in the brain all the same. And the over-the-top smuttiness that makes Grease 2 even dumber than its predecessor also renders it a surprisingly enjoyable exercise in delirious self-parody.

Friday, September 18, 2015

GRAND UNIFIED MUPPET THEORY CONFIRMED!  You remember what I claimed in 2010, right?
Much as The Muppet Movie is a movie-within-a-movie about how the Muppets received The Standard Rich & Famous Contract and became stars (including towards its end the newly-famous Muppets filming an origins film), The Muppets Take Manhattan, The Great Muppet Caper and all the other Muppet films should be seen as the other films the now-famous Muppet actors are making within the universe of the first film. In other words, the first film is a story about the "real" Muppets becoming actors, and the rest are the films those actors have made -- with Fozzie Bear playing a character named "Fozzie Bear," etc. It explains, for example, how the "Kermit" and "Miss Piggy" characters can marry (in a musical within a movie, but for "real") at the end of Manhattan yet this marriage isn't acknowledged in subsequent films. These are the movies which Lew Lord of Worldwide Pictures signed them to make.
The Muppets creator Bill Prady, talking to Sepinwall:
One of the things we're saying is that in the movies, they were playing versions of themselves.  So we're seeing them off screen for the first time.  I'm trying to think of an example, but like Hope and Crosby used to play themselves in all the movies or the Marx brothers or something, but then they also lived in Beverly Hills and had real lives (outside the movies).  I always imagined that after they finished doing "The Muppet Show," there was a bar across the street from the Muppet Show Theater where they'd go sit down and Kermit would have a drink and Fozzie would come over and say, "Well, it wasn't our worst."  And I always wanted to be at that bar.  So that's where this show is, it's in as close to the real world and the real personal life. 
Alan is not a fan; like others, he sees a Miss Piggy unleavened by her love of Kermit as being intolerably mean. And, really, do we want to be thinking about Muppets having sex? 

[But we're all going to watch, right? Can't be worse than Clifford, the Crunchy Rasta Muppet.]

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

ITS TITLE BEING THE BIGGEST LIE SINCE "THE NEVERENDING STORY":  We love NPH. We're open to a return to variety shows in America. What went wrong there?

Because as Gene Siskel once suggested in reviewing a film, I'd have rather watched NPH, Reese Witherspoon, Carson Daly, Gloria Gaynor, Carrot Top, Ant and Dec having lunch than the hour they produced -- except for that last bit, which was delightfully gonzo.

Maybe I'm just too suspicious of, or bored by, all hidden camera tricks at this point. (NPH as Christoph Waltz should've worked, right?) Maybe they just need more time. But that?  That wasn't what I was hoping for.

Monday, September 14, 2015

SUFFOCATION BY DESIGN: "In total, [FanDuel and DraftKings] spent a combined $31 million for roughly 9,000 national television spots last week, according to advertising tracking firm"

I WANT TO SEE WHAT HE'LL SAY NEXT: Rob Tannenbaum and Craig Marks rank the 32 greatest (real, fictional, tv, radio, daytime, late night, whatever) talk show hosts of all time. (Other than Steve Allen, I guess.)