I know that Joey from Straight Bangin’ has already done a half of the year in review and pretty much did the best job in summing things thus far, but you know, it never hurts to have another opinion on things.
2006, thus far has been a greatly disappointing year for films. All be it, we’re in the middle of the summer season and finished the doldrums of the spring season, but still there has yet to be a good film to trickle out of the woodworks. Each week or at least every other week, I walk out of the movies either slightly frustrated or slightly disappointed by the latest effort from directors I’m a fan; the two biggest guilty parities have to be Robert Altman and Bryan Singer. Too much money has to the problem, which sounds like an unusual statement.
With that said though, it should be noted that Bubble marks the return of Steven Soderbergh, the filmmaker. After the release of 2000’s epic Traffic, Soderbergh lost his edge either make George Clooney film after George Clooney film or producing films directed by George Clooney. Soderbergh had already achieved the director’s dream by winning an Academy Award for his directorial work on Traffic and begin to make films in the same way people paint by numbers. In the late 1990s, Soderbergh’s career was on the up slope, but it just disappeared after the success of Ocean’s 11 . Thanks to Mark Cuban and his company, HDNet Films, they have brought the director back out and created a film full of atmosphere and heartbreaking performances. The small town murder mystery feels less like a murder mystery and plays more like a documentary as the film unfolds offering piece after piece of a larger puzzle. The dialogue, although largely improvised feels real as characters engage in arguments where they say the same thing over and over again, like we do in real life. Not to mention, Bubble’s refreshing and brisk running time of 73 minutes shows that Soderbergh has decided to listen to cinematic advice of Roger Corman: “Once the monster is dead, the move is over.”
Other great films from this year include:
-Sympathy for Lady Vengeance [have to scroll a smidge for the review]
-Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
I would say something about the best albums of the year, so far. But the thing is, I think we all know the three to four albums everybody and their kid sister with a blog is or has been into the past seven months. In an attempt to be brief and to the point and in no particular order: the four best albums of the year, thus far are:
-“Fish Scale” by Ghostface Killah
-“Return to the Sea” by Islands
-“Shut Up I am Dreaming” by Sunset Rubdown
-“Return to Cookie Mountain” by TV On the Radio
Perhaps because I’m listening to more radio than I have in previous years, but this year has felt like a year of great songs, but not great albums. I’ve become more impatient with music this year. Not that I’ve become a person who just skips to the songs they’ve heard before, but it’s like, after 4 or 5 songs, if I’m not into it, then I’m tossing the album to the side.
Another list of great things from this year: the 5 best things on the Stern show since the move to Sirius:
- George Takei
- Crazy Alice
- Mike Walker farts
- Dan the Song Parody Man’s Riley Martin songs
- Artie Lange
The Worst parts of Stern being on Sirius:
- Ralph Cirella calling in four to five times each morning
- Shuli and his laugh which is almost as bad as the laugh of Kendra on “The Girls Next Door. [Side note: Has anybody else wondered what weird and sick thing the other two girls Hefner dates does? Because it seems as if Hef is only into Holly and you know, he must keep the other two around cause they do something vile]
Other great things about the year thus far:
- “8th & Ocean” We need a second season ASAP, dudes!
- Freeway’s verse on “Cannon (AMG Remix),”; Fuck Busta Rhymes rapping about coke; it’s like somebody said once before: “Dude was on ‘Scenario’”
- “Hustlin’” by Rick Ross; while people may dislike Ross’ flows and lyrics. The beat by production duo, the Runners is quite infectious and the hook looks great as a slogan on t-shirts (saw one the other night at the movies). It’s just that we should all choose to fast forward through Jay’s verse.
- Mike Napoli
Now to focus on the bad things from this year, thus far and the first thing that really leapt to mind was how quickly “My Name is Earl,” went from being a great, funny, original show to a repetitive mess of a show in a matter of months, if not weeks. It was the same episode over and over again and it took me nearly a majority of a season to realize this. The performances by Jamie Pressly and Ethan Suplee are great, but the rest of the show is so boring. It’s a real situation where one could actually say “If you’ve seen one episode, then you’ve seen them all.” I’m not sure how exactly they, being the writers could fix the problem with the show because how many white trash clichés can they drag out each week? Granted that the last time I checked Barbie Adler, who wrote my favorite episode of “Arrested Development,” still works on “Earl,” so maybe there’s hope, but I’m not holding my breath.
Other terrible things from this year so far include:
- Ann Coulter
- Nick Zano
- Joe Buck
- Ryan Seacrest’s ‘pot shots’ at Giuliana DePandi
- Senator Ted Stevens
- Attack of the Show co host Kevin Pereira
Yet, there’s so hope for the rest of the year. It’s like I told a friend the other day, “begin to hope.” Maybe things will work out better and people will make interesting stuff again.
I have mixed feelings about the new M. Night Shayamaln film Lady in the Water. There’s a large piece of me that knows this film will suck and be complete and utter let down like every other Shayamalan film since 2000’s Unbreakable. Much like everybody else in Hollywood, there’s a piece of me that wants him to fail because I saw The Village and I want that 108 minutes of my life back. Then you see I start to think about Lady in the Water being Paul Giamatti’s first leading role in a big studio picture and Christopher Doyle is the cinematographer on the film and how passion Shayamalan was about the project that he dissolved his working relationship with the mouse to make it. I don’t know what to do. Is the film high up on anybody’s summer viewing radar?
Fuck it. I’ll just wait to be disappointed by Michael Mann’s Miami Vice.
Mark, you’ve won. I know believe that Cory Kennedy is attractive. While I won’t go as far as to call her a fashion icon, but I assume that there are girls in middle America that print out photos of her and talk about her as if she’s the new Edie Sedgwick or something along those lines. But if worst to comes to worst, she could probably be the new Sienna Miller. So happy birthday cobra snake!
New season of “V.Mars” starts on October 3rd. At Comic Con, they’ll probably be a couple of questions about why do we have to wait so long for the new season to start?