Archive for academy awards

The Book Booth: Academy Awards Edition

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BookBoothFScottFitzgeraldw264h202
Image: Oregon Life

The Book Booth is a weekly feature at The Political Carnival, relating news, notes, and reflections from the world of books and publishing. @SeattleDan, along with his wife, SeattleTammy, are operators of both an on-line bookstore here, as well as a brick and mortar storefront mini-store in Hoquiam, WA at 706 Simpson Ave (Route 101 South). Both have been in the book business since shortly after the Creation, or close to 6000 years now.

The Book Booth: Academy Awards Edition

Yet another year and once again, the Academy has neglected to nominate me for any awards at all. And after all the years I've put in, watching movies. I don't get it. But others will "get" their awards and, for me, another year of neglect.

Another guy neglected by the Academy was Norman Mailer. Of course if you've ever seen the screen versions of The Naked and the Dead or An American Dream, maybe that is understandable. But at least he'll be having a film adaptation coming up of his Armies of the Night, his account of the march on the Pentagon in 1967.
Armies

F. Scott Fitzgerald closed out his all too brief life, living in Hollywood, where he did screenplay doctoring and had a credit for his work on Three Comrades. His decline is well documented, and sad. Jeff Baker at Oregonlive has these reflections on his Hollywood career.
FSF in LaLa Land

The film version of 50 Shades of Grey opened this past weekend to mega millions of dollars in receipts. I don't think we'll be seeing it nominated for much of anything at next year's Oscars, but who knows? However someone should give an award to Gilbert Gottfried for his reading of the book, which absolutely Not Safe for Work.
50 Shades

I'm certainly not opposed to eroticism in fiction, if done well. TimeOut has these suggestions for books much better written than 50 Shades. I, for one, liked Vox by Nicholson Baker, very much.
Eroticism in Fiction

Here is a fun graphic timeline of books that have been banned over the centuries from PrinterInk. I don't think 50 Shades has made the cut yet for being an important banned book.
Banned Books

Of course To Kill a Mockingbird has been banned at various times and in various places. And with the announcement of a new Harper Lee novel coming out this summer, Sam Tanenhausl at Bloomberg reflects on the endurance of Mockingbird.
Why To Kill a Mockingbird Won't Die

In more fun book news, a new Dr. Seuss book will be published this coming July. It was discovered in his office, fully written, illustrated and entitled What Pet Should I Get. Publishers Weekly has the story here.

How well up are you on your Edgar Allan Poe quotations? And, for that matter, how well do you know your Goth song lyrics? Flavorwire challenges you to guess what is what here in this quiz. Good luck!  Edgar Allen Poe Goth Lyrics Quiz

This week saw the passing of former US Poet Laureate Philip Levine. He was a fine poet, accessible and thoughtful. NPR had this story on his life and work.
Philip Levine Has Left Us

Finally, our little town has had a very mild winter, if we don't count the eight inches of rain we had one day, leading to some major flooding. But the rest of the country seems to have snow. A lot of snow. And a great time to catch up on your reading. Buzzfeed looks at the upside of being snowbound.

Good luck to all you Oscar nominees and hoping I can join you on the red carpet next year! In the meantime, let us know what books you've got going and recommend. A good weekend to us all.

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Ellen Rocked It, Then Kimmel Slayed the Après Academy Live

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Image: The Today Show

Image: The Today Show

Written by guest contributor, "hardybear" of the wonderful Free Range Talk site:

Granted, Sunday started poorly. That thirsty piece of Florida flotsam, Marco Rubio, stentorianly re-declared the Cold War - - in what may have been an aria from "Frozen" --for the Tea Party Talent portion of his Pageant programming on NBC's MTP. [Tim Russert's deservedly bitter ghost snorted extra derisively.]

So fast forward to a glam evening in Holllly-wood.  Ellen was arguably epic. Sometimes I espouse spousal envy of Portia ... can you ponder the heights of domestic jocularity?  But if you couldn't let the night Party On until Jimmy Kimmel's 9th Annual Post Oscar Live Special for whatever reason, here's your fix. He baldly opened in bed with the aforementioned pair of brainy blondes.

The ensuingly black-tied Kimmel went on to nimbly interject his own categories of dramatically scored 'clips' in a hilarious parade of Youtubey parody trailers, with a roster of B.F.D. actors that would have had James Lipton calling for smelling salts. All of which are wicked hootworthy and available here.

Kevin Spacey charmed in spades as the sublimely urbane First Chair guest, see if you find his Carson impression as Academy level as the later Frank Underwood southuhn' sidebar asides.

Spacey was also a paws-down Kimmel Best Actor re-contender with his playful lead in "Meowadeaus". (Cracker Jack of a Cameo prize: Mandy Patinkin.)

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Academy Awards sequel: "Gravity: #Christie stars as huge disintigrating space station."

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academyawards

It's Academy Awards Day! Yippee! Welcome to my vice, my chocolate, my drug of choice, and my food binge all wrapped up in one self-congratulatory, gaudy, narcissistic, glitzy, decadent, glamorous, self-indulgent crazy fun package during which nobody is allowed to call, text, email, or interrupt me in any way whatsoever.

Yes, I'm a twelve-year-old fan girl. But what else would you expect from a former TV/stage actress/writer/director? I live for this stuff, despite the embarrassing amount of money and attention spent on stars who regularly receive an embarrassing amount of money and attention.

I am a Red Carpet addict in search of a meeting:

"I am Laffy and I am an Academy Awards-aholic."

"Hi Laffy!"

I gobble this stuff up the way the media eats up Hillary Clinton 2016 speculation. However, I don't give one damn about who is wearing whom, and I resent every swag bag handed out to 1%ers who need freebies the way John Boehner needs another drink.

I do find myself ogling, admiring, and critiquing the Botoxed, lifted, tucked stars morphing into mere shadows of their pre-altered selves; and I have no problem snarking about every minute of the festivities-- including the embarrassingly groveling interviewers-- with Mr. Laffy while guzzling wine from my Sippy Cup.

Did I mention how grateful I am for high def Tee Vee Machines? Say it with me now: I am an equal opportunity Academy Awards reveler in the good, the bad, the ugly, the glammy, and the inevitably awkward.

I laugh, I groan, I get misty-eyed, frustrated, angry, and triumphant for three-plus seemingly endless hours of long-winded self-promotion by the glitterati and ABC alike.

So I admit it, this is my one Very Special night to be as superficial, catty, annoyed, and appreciative as I want, and often bored. I own it without reservation. So there.

Which brings me to this excellent series of images by Steve Brodner. He calls the collection "This Year's Oscar Nominees Kickstart Next Year's Sequels." The following is but a taste of how beautifully he combined the world of politics with 2014's Best Picture nominees, so please go here for the rest:

Oscars and politics cartoon Academy Awards Chris Christie, Koch Brothers via Steve Brodner

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2014 Political Animal Awards- #Christie Big Shoes to Fill Award: WI Gov. Scott Walker

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awards red carpet

Another guest post by the one, the only Will Durst who's having a little fun with the annual Silly Season O' Awards, aka, the ever popular "Who are you wearing?" Moments of Superficiality. We here in Hollywood-adjacent areas and elsewhere refer to these awards events as "Why do even unemployed celebrities get free swag worth thousands while the rest of us unemployed slobs get eviction notices?"

But I digress. Will Durst offers us a mostly political version as only he can:

2014 POLITICAL ANIMAL AWARDS

For all those who have spent the last couple of months shoveling out a car, you should know we’re at the tail end of awards season. And best be advised to hunker in a bunker wearing a Kevlar overcoat, because gold plated statues are being tossed about like air kisses at a gown fitting. Like clouds of bathroom hair spray during Oscar Nominee Luncheons. Like jaded eyes at a press screening of Transformers 4.

We here at Durstco are not too proud to jump eyes wide shut headfirst onto the shiny awards bandwagon with a great flying leap and sticky squid tentacle sleeves to prevent overshooting. In our dubious presentations, eligible recipients are the phony, pompous and duplicitous. Elected officials predominate but anyone in the news qualifies as a nominee.

Finally, we’d like to thank our friends and family and everybody like us and us. And all you kids out there growing up different, trying to hang onto a dream. Because without dreams, you’re like a Rottweiler without a spleen. So now, running the risk of spraining a wrist patting ourselves on the back, here they are; the 2014 Political Animal Awards.

THE WE’LL CROSS THAT BRIDGE WHEN WE COME TO IT AWARD: Chris Christie.
BEST DISAPPEARING ACT: Mitt Romney.
WORST DISAPPEARING ACT: Bill Clinton.
THE CHRIS CHRISTIE BIG SHOES TO FILL AWARD: Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker.
THE LET’S ALL HOLD HANDS AND SING KUMBAYA AWARD: US President Barack Obama.
THE LET’S NOT ALL HOLD HANDS AND SING KUMBAYA AWARD: Russian President Vladimir Putin.
THE “OH GOD NO, NOT YOU AGAIN” AWARD: Ted Nugent.
THE THINKING THROUGH HIS WRONG BRAIN AWARD: French President Francois Hollande.
THE WHY WON’T ANYONE RETURN MY CALLS AWARD: Michele Bachmann.
THE DUMBER THAN HE LOOKS AWARD: Toronto Mayor Rob Ford.
THE NOT AS DUMB AS HIS HAIR LOOKS AWARD: Donald Trump. Again.
THE GROCERY SHOPPING WITH SALMAN RUSHDIE AWARD: Edward Snowden.
THE IF HE WAS A HORSE, THEY WOULD HAVE SHOT HIM 10 YEARS AGO AWARD: Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid.
BEST MAKE OVER: The Vatican.
THE PIXIE DUST AWARD: a gift from we Baby Boomers to all the Gen Xers who start turning 50 next year.
THE WE ARE THE EVIL EMPIRE AWARD: The US Defense Department for using drone strikes on American citizens.
THE MOST EFFECTIVE SPOKESPERSON EVER FOR FAMILY PLANNING AWARD: Kim Jong Un.
PROOF THAT SOME SPECIES EAT THEIR YOUNG FOR A REASON AWARD: Justin Bieber.
THE MANNEQUINS R’ US LIFELIKE AWARD: Wresting it away from Al Gore, John Kerry.
MENSA’S SMARTEST MAN OF THE YEAR AWARD: Pussy Riot.
THE WON’T EVEN STEP FOOT IN AN OLIVE GARDEN AWARD: Amanda Knox.
BEST ACHIEVEMENT IN TECHNICOLOR: House Majority Leader John Boehner.
THE MOST IMPORTANT PERSON IN AMERICA AWARD: For the 3rd year in a row… Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s doctor.
BEST ACTRESS: Hillary Clinton for her convincing portrayal of a woman unsure of her role in the 2016 Presidential race.
THE HEY GUYS. I’M STILL IN THE ROOM AWARD: Vice President Joe Biden.
THE YOUR FIFTEEN MINUTES WERE UP THIRTY MINUTES AGO AWARD: Anthony Weiner.
THE LEAST LIKELY TO WIN THE NAACP’S WOMAN OF THE YEAR AWARD AWARD: Megyn Kelly.
THE TED CRUZ MAN OF THE YEAR AWARD: Ted Cruz.

Will Durst is an award- winning, nationally acclaimed political comic. Go to willdurst.com to find about more about his new CD, “Elect to Laugh” and calendar of personal appearances.

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