Archive: March, 2010
Premiering March 14 at the film component of SXSW, Lebanon, PA is the story of Philly ad man Will who returns home for his father's funeral. The epic Return Home Due to Dead Dad Issues isn't a new concept (see: Elizabethtown, among others), but this movie looks to up the quirk factor and doesn't seem to include any Manic Pixie Dream Girls (see: Kirsten Dunst in Elizabethtown), not to mention new tunes from Matt Pond PA and post-production work from Philly's own DIVE post production house (who worked on The Road and The Art of the Steal).
(Secretly I'm also excited because I love Josh Hopkins, who plays Will, because he's on Cougartown. And I love Cougartown. Shhh ... Don't tell anyone.)
Related >> DIVE in: Before and after The Road
|Photo | Mark Garvin for Arden Theatre Co.|
|Kes Khemnu as Simon/Rex/Jesse in Arden Theatre Co.'s production of Blue Door.|
Philosophy of mathematics professor Lewis, played with frenetic passion by Johnnie Hobbs Jr., can't sleep because his wife has left him. His tossing and turning in their bed, surrounded by floor-to-ceiling books on Daniel Conway's dreamlike abstract set, is interrupted by storyteller Kes Khemnu, who shares Lewis' three previous generations' harrowing survival tales. ... [A] brisk tour through Simon's lineage the play whips by in 75 minutes proves fascinating, the ugliness of prejudice and ignorance balanced by the dynamism, genuineness and humor of the actors' performances.From now till closing night, tickets are $10 off, which is a nice incentive for us broke-ass theater lovers. And if you're looking for something more Bardic than Blue Door? The Arden's Romeo and Juliet, which opened last week, also got rave reviews from our critic.
Through March 21, $24-$38, Arden Theatre Co., 40 N. Second St., 215-922-1122, ardentheatre.org.
|Will captured fans be released?|
I kinda don't know what to do with this info. So I'll just barf it out on you.
Today at 2:30pm EST (rain or shine) MGMT will reveal a clue to a secret location in the Philadelphia area on whereismgmt.com.
Fans will be given an hour to show up, but they must come quickly because there are only a certain number of spots for the adventure that lies ahead.
For more information pleae visit: twitter.com/whereisMGMT
Columbia Records, Digital Media
blah blah etc.
Okay, so this is apparently not to promote a show, but some kind of meet-n-tweet. They're calling it a Fan Capture, which sounds maybe a lot more awesome that what it will turn out to be which is some kind of photo- op/ticklefight with the Brooklyn duo. Yesterday, for an NYC event, they gave out GPS coordinates and a password. I like MGMT and all but it's raining. And I am tired of typing "Brooklyn duo." But I like mystery and adventure.
Q&A with JAY BARUCHEL: "Because I have to look however someone wants me to look so friggin' often, I have to do these little measured acts of defiance."
|Courtesy of Paramount Pictures|
|LEAGUE OF NATIONS: Jay Baruchel, T.J. Miller, Nate Torrence
and Mike Vogel of She's Out of My League.
Uh ... awkward.
Back story: I'm an intern and I'm sent to interview Jay Baruchel (Knocked Up, Million Dollar Baby) and Nate Torrence, the stars of She's out of My League (read Shaun Brady's review). It's my first real assignment. It's a roundtable so I know I'll be interviewing with other reporters.
Problem is, I'm 15 minutes late (gimme a break! It was Snowpacalypsing outside!).
I rush into the busy hotel lobby when I spot Baruchel out of the corner of my eye. His hood is pulled over his head and his boyish face is masked with a beard. He is intensely talking to a middle-aged woman who seems to be a reporter. Thinking the interview has already started, I plop myself into the middle of their conversation, trying to be smooth, with these words: "Hey guys, I think I'm supposed to be joining this party?" (I kid you not).
The disgruntled reporter scolds me and informs me that she was conducting a lone interview, and that me and the rest of the group reporters would go next. She scurries me off into the lobby, and Jay chuckles and calls after me, telling me not worry about it.
When I see Baruchel again (this time, I when I'm supposed to), I apologize. "Don't worry, she was a bitch to me, too," he says of our banshee reporter buddy. Even if lessening my embarrassment was meant to curry my favor, it was still a nice-guy thing to do.
And that's what this movie is about: In this film, nice guys finish first. Baruchel plays Kirk, an average Joe airport attedant who can't get over his ex. Fate strikes when super hottie Molly (Alice Eve) forgets her phone at the baggage claim. When Kirk returns it, the two begin a courtship that is sweet, mired in premature ejaculation and testicle-shaving jokes.
Baruchel says that it was important to get to know Eve as a person, so that their on screen romance came off as legit: "No matter what, it was obvious that we were going to get the awkward stuff down pat but we made a conserted effort to hang out together. We ran errands together, I took her to the doctor's office, just so you could buy that we had some semblence of a connection."
Preparation aside, it was the romance between the men on that set that came more naturally. Through the film, Kirk seeks advice from his fellow airport employees: Stainer (T.J Miller), Jack (Abington-born, Warminster-bred Mike Vogel) and Devon (Torrence). "You never really know in comedy, sometimes it's like a pissing contest or a competition," says Torrence.
An excellent working relation ship paramount considering one of League's more memorable scenes: Torrence's character is tasked with assisting our hero Kirk in shaving his scrotum. "We're not misogynistic, frat boy dicks and we didn't want it to skew that way," says Baruchel. "It was more like a friend holding your hair back when you puke."
This is a big year for Baruchel. After League, he's got How to Train Your Dragon (March 26) and The Sorcerer's Apprentice (July 16) with Nicholas Cage on his slate. "I mean, I'm terrified about this year. But really I've been the 'One to watch next year' for the past 10 fucking years. When I was 18 and did Undeclared everyone was like 'Hey look out for this kid!' And then Million Dollar Baby wins Best Picture at the Oscars and everyone's like 'Whoa, check out that kid!'And Knocked Up and Tropic Thunder come out and they're like 'This kid's gonna be big!' I'm just happy to keep working, and to have cash to buy DVDs, and I hope that continues."
He's clearly psyched about the animated Dragon. "[My character] Hiccup is the closest thing I have to a son. Well, besides my cat, who is the love of my life." He proceeds to take out his iPhone and show me an oil portrait of said cat, Mary Manu. She's decked out with a moncle and is painted in the blue-and-red style of the Obama "Hope" posters.
But Hollywood ain't all bread and roses. When I ask him about the airbrushing of his infamous Candian maple leaf tattoo (as seen Knocked Up), he gleefully shows me his other tattoos (a Celtic cross and his mother's maiden name). "Because I have to look however someone wants me to look so friggin' often, I have to do these little measured acts of defiance," he says. "My little routine that I do every time I wrap up a movies is I go home, I get a wee bit inebriated, and in the wee hours of the morning I will shave my head into a Mohawk. That's my go-to. I have to remind myself that I am still my own human being."
As they get ready to leave, Baurchel and Torrence say they wished they could spend more time in Philly, and talk about the awesomeness of Pat's, where they made their own first cheesesteak with Eagles cheerleaders.
"It really is the life," says Baruchel.
She's Out of My League opens Friday at area theaters.
The header on Puppet Uprising's Web site right now Five Acts * Five Companies * Five Desserts * One Play is enough to pique our interest. But it's the secret part that really sends our drama-club hearts aflutter.
Here's the deal: At 8 p.m. tonight through Monday (that's the Ides of March, hint hint), get yourself gussied up and head to the Broad-and-Vine subway stop, and make sure you're wearing a red carnation so the folks running the show (Missoula Oblongata and Puppet Uprising) know who you are. They'll lead you to an undisclosed location for a night of snacks (we're hearing rumors of hot toddies and cupcakes) and theater (this year's production, in case you hadn't guessed, is Julius Caesar).
As that headline suggests, five companies are joining forces for this five-act endeavor including Philly's own Green Chair Dance Group, Puppetyranny and Fence Kitchen. Did we mention that an emperor-size party's scheduled for closing night? Did we mention the hot toddies?
Missoula and the Uprising have been at this DIY theater game for years, presenting The Tempest in 2008 and King Lear in '09; tickets ($20 ahead of time; $25 at the door) have been known to sell out, so buy yours now. And don't forget that carnation.
For the first time, the oh-so-meta 30 Rock discussed the Comcast buyout of NBC/Universal from erstwhile parent company GE (fond adieu, Sheinhardt Wig Company). This time around, Comcast is called Kabletown ("A fine and generous company," as Tina Fey/Liz Lemon turns to the camera and says. Aw, that's 'cause they don't have Comcast in Manhattan).
It was an excellent episode considering 30 Rock's mediocrity of late (you guys gotta be feeling that too), with many of the best lines coming from Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin) about the Comcast/Kabletown buyout. At first, he doesn't think it will go through, telling Liz, "A company from Philadelphia buying a company from New York? That's like Vietnam beating the U.S. in a land war."
Guest star Elizabeth Banks is also coming into her own as pundit Avery (if you watch this episode, above, for anything, it should be for the blink-and-it's-over Brian Williams cameo). Also, Kenneth (Jack McBrayer), as always, kills it (see: donkey spells).
I'm interested to see where else Upper Darby's Tina and Co. go with the whole Kabletown thing. I figure it's an opportunity for a whole slew of guest star Kabletown execs, maybe even a trip to Philly (call us, Tina).
Jack probably won't come, though. He sums it all up when he says with great disgust, "These people are from Philadelphia!"
I would say that this is a What We Heart, if these Mad Men Barbies weren't super creepy. The special collection dolls based on everybody's favorite morally lax ad men (and their ladies) retails for $74.95 and will be sold at high-end retail stores and amctv.com and barbiecollector.com.
Do you think the come with little Barbie cigarettes too? What about tumblers of whiskey for mini-Roger Sterling (inner left) and mini-Don Draper (inner right)? I love how they gave Joan (left) a set of hips just like her portrayer, most-beautiful-woman-in-the-world Christina Hendricks.
Hey, did you know that Box Brown, who is showing his work at Brave New World this month, did one of the most apt portraits of Hendricks I've ever seen?
That portrait may be even more realistic than the Barbie.
We just can't help ourselves. You can't, either; just admit it.
What do you think? Was it worth all the hype?
But you know that already. So, here's a slideshow of Pavement t-shirts. For some reason.
The show is Sept. 17. Go to manncenter.org for ticket info. And note: the Mann site says "Check back often for more shows" so... yeah.
And all of us chumps who panicked and bought tickets like six months ago for those NYC shows? Eh, we knew there'd be a tour. I will see a reunited Pavement more than once.
We like American Idol. Too much.
Tommy Button: For the first time since we got outta Hollywood I think the boys did better than the girls. After Seacrest's infinite intro I thought this episode was doomed for failure. But the boys appeared to have become men. Stools and acoustic guitars aside, I offer you my commendation, gentlemen.
Molly Eichel: Are you deaf?! Last night was awful. Everyone rocked the same singer-songwriter bullshit with little-to-no innovation. I feel like Amber after Cher gives that speech in debate class in Clueless. "Hello! Was anyone listening? I thought it wreaked." Tommy, I'm honestly rethinking our American Idol BFF status.
TB: Molly, you ignorant slut. It's you saying things like that that make me wanna smack you around. You know I only do it because I love you. Now, let the men talk so we can get down to business.
ME: The only person who came close to Powersox yesterday was Michael "Big Mike" Lynche's extraordinary version of Maxwell's "This Women's Work." I'm glad he's figured out that he's more neo-soul than white boy folk rock.
TB: At least we agree on that. Finally, Big Mike put down that pussy acoustic guitars and brought out the big guns. He made Kara, Satan's bride in the frozen ninth circle of hell, cry. She cried real human tears. I don't believe it. Big Mike obviously gets a huge seal of approval from me. I was falling off the Mike train but this performance got me right back on board. And even though it feels wrong to say it, Lee Dewyze was probably the other alpha dog of the night. I don't think I'm ever gonna be 100 percent about this guy but he had a better night than anybody besides Big Mike so fair play to you, Lee Dewyze. Live in this moment, because I will probably never give it to you again.
ME: Ick, really? So not feeling Lee this week. I think he either needs to be amazing or I'm just gonna ignore him and he deserved to be ignored this week. I don't know what it is about him, but he I always picture him giving Aaron Kelly wedgies and sticking his head in the toilet.
TB: Look, Lee Dewyze is a perfectly nice fella with a good voice for the radio but who listens to the radio? Sure, hands down one of the best performances of the night but I just don't like him that much. Whatever, call it personal taste but Lee Dewyze is not my bag.
ME: I also dug Alex Lambert doing Ray LaMontagne's "Trouble." But it didn't blow Ray's version out of the water. I think this was a so-so performance from someone who could do better. And boy musta gotta laid or something recently because his confidence is way up.
TB: Apparently, Alex can only be talked about in bananalogies. That being said, his song choice was a like a sweet plantain, like Maduros. His hair, on the other hand was unaPEELing. If you wanna be taken seriously as a Top12er, you gotta trim that mullet. On a similar note, Casey James was back on the stool doing his stooly thing. Out of all the guys who decided to whip out their axe, he pulled it off the best. That goes for the stool, as well.
ME: I think one of the reasons I wasn't on Team Casey this week was his show placement. By the time we got to Casey, I had stooly white boys and their guitars fatigue. but after seeing Tim Urban do yet another version of "Hallelujah" how could you not be?
TB: Shut up. Just shut up. And take back that Ellen hug. If you can't tell, I hate it when Tim Urban does a good job.
ME: Right?! Because it means people I like will get the boot, like Todrick Hall doing just okay with "Somebody to Love." A song Elliot Yamin killed during his season.
TB: I hate the way 'Todrick' is spelled. But I love Queen. Not sure how I feel about Todrick the person. The jazz hands definitely help him stand out in the crowd of weepy guitars. Just maybe not in a good way.
ME: But because Todrick did just good enough, he might edge out someone far more talented like Andrew Garcia who had a shitty week with "Genie in a Bottle." Look, dude, just because the pop starlet thing works once doesn't mean you need to keep doing it.
TB: Christina Aguiliera?! Wah?! I was trying to figure out how I really felt about that performance then the Iron Man 2 trailer came on. I wanna say I liked it but there were parts of that where I found myself on the fence. It's a shitty truth, but he has to top "Straight Up" otherwise it's just gonna haunt him. I don't know what he can do but he if he makes it this week, I'd say he's got one more tops to pull a Big Mike.
ME: God, at least he wasn't poor Aaron Kelly. I've hated on Aaron but he doesn't deserve the boot at this point. He's just too young. He's not there yet as an artist.
TB: Playing the stool card in the beginning was a bad first move. He hit his stride here and there but most of it was about as awkward as the next couple years of his life. There weren't any dude Paige Miles tonight so it's a little more difficult for me to choose a bottom two but I have put Aaron Kelly and Andrew Garcia on the chopping block.
ME: I don't know if Todrick has built up the necessary fanbase to make it to Top 12 because his other performances have licked donkey balls. He may be on his way out too.
TB: Really, I'd like to see Todrick and Tim hit the road, but that's just because I don't really like them. But my gut is telling me Aaron and Andrew. Or I just have to poop. Only time will tell...
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