Because no one asked for it: Liveblogging No Strings Attached

1:14-- "14 Years ago" Color Me Badd's"I Want to Sex You Up" is playing as what I assume are the younger versions of our couple are talking about the guy's divorce. Guy is all "wah, my parents are divorcing" and she's all, "monogamy sux."

3:02-- "5 Years Ago" Lol, girl wears onsie pajamas to a frat pajama party. Does she have Asberger's?

4:20-- BOOTLEG MARK RUFFALO IS IN THIS MOVIE. He's already the best part of this movie.

4:40-- The couple reminisces about that time he asked to finger her.

5:35-- Girl brings guy toa funeral, only saying that it's "some stupid thing." Guy is misdressed. Girl has no social skills, still.

7:10-- So the girl is all, "we're probably never going to see each other again." Who is this character and why is she making these weird choices?

7:45-- "1 Year Ago" and Bootleg Mark Ruffalo sees someone he knew in college.

8:45-- BMR makes a 90210 reference. This is more important that Natalie Portman ("Emma") talking about going to med school. Kutcher's girlfriend is overly touchy-feely.

10:05-- "Today" some obnoxious music video/High School Musical? thing is being taped.

11:10-- Kutcher is lifecoaching some young actress about love. Director or something is giving him time off and being awkward. I like her blazer.

12:35-- Kevin Kline is Kutcher's dad. I'm so ashamed for him, although he looks pretty good with his shirt off. KK was some sort of TV star ("Great Scott!") and also smokes pot.

14:03-- KK asks Kutcher if he's having sex. Awkward. Also, KK is sleeping with Kutcher's ex-girlfriend? Sigh.

15:55-- LUDACRIS! is a bartender. The words out of his mouth are supposed to be funny and making fun of Kutcher's situation. Not working.

16:40-- BMR is still the best part of this movie.

17:05-- Oh hey, Abby Elliott gives Kutcher more drinks as he desperately calls girls to bang.

18:05-- Mandy Kaling is getting naked Kutcher coffee the next morning. Annnd dude roommate gives him his socks. And another roommate states that she slept with him.

20:13-- Oh snap, none of the roommates slept with him. Portman reveals the truth.

21:05-- Dude roommates makes a statement that he's definitely gay when naked kutcher reveals his butt walking to Portman's room.

22:05-- Is Natalie supposed to be charming? She's like a charisma suck.

23:25-- And now they're doing it. Natalie Portman has some sort of prepubescent bralette on.

26:00-- Portman went to the hospital. Kutcher is wearing shorts at a cafe and is leaving a message for Portman. Portman and another dude just walked up. BMR is also there. Kutcher is awkward as hell and telling her she's beautiful.

27:20-- BMR is the only person in this movie who acts like someone who isn't a robot.

28:38-- Kutcher can't read social cues either and brings Portman a balloon at the hospital and asks her why she hasn't called back. Portman apparently has an "emotional peanut allergy." What?

30:30-- That bluegrass version of "99 Problems" is happening in this movie. Portman and Kutcher are texting.

31:20-- Ludacris is in second place for understanding/interacting with people. I take it back, Abby Elliott's bit part is more humanoid.

32:16-- Oh shoot, it was a booty call. And now he wants to snuggle, and Portman's all "robo" and gets dressed.

33:40-- The proposition: they will have a strictly sexual relationship. WILL THEY BE ABLE TO DO IT AND NOT FALL FOR EACH OTHER?

34:45-- Hook-up montage.

35:55-- I take it back, Mindy Kaling's one-liners are more entertaining than almost all of this movie. She and BMR should hook up.

37:15-- Although BMR is chatting up one of the blonde doctors.

37:50-- Kutcher is jealous or something.

41:00-- Director or whatever is going to read Kutcher's script.

43:15-- Kutcher has cupcakes and brings them to Portman's apartment where everyone is sick or something. Or on their periods.

44:15-- Kutcher made a Period Mix CD. What the hell is happening?

45:15-- They slept spooning, I guess. Portman's pissed. Blah blah blah they're going to have sex with random strangers or something.

48:00-- BMR and Luda are trying to tell Kutcher that he has a good thing. Mandy Kaling wants to get laid.

48:50-- BMR and blonde dotor are going on a date and they are being cute and acting like real humans.

49:50-- Abby Elliott is doing impressions. I think she's going to hook-up with some random girl.

54:35-- Portman shows up at Kutcher's place drunk. Kutcher is hiding ladies making out on his couch.

57:25-- Kevin Kline and the crew of the show he work on are singing some song for Kutcher's birthday. Kline, what are you in this movie? You're too good for this.

1:01:30-- Portman join Kutcher for dinner with Dad and ex-girlfriend. I hate everything about this movie.

1:05:40-- They're going on a real date.

1:08:00-- Minigolf. Sharing a milkshake.

1:11:30-- Natalie Portman is beating up Kutcher for saying he loves her. I'm...confused/apathetic.

1:13:40-- BMR is having dinner with his blonde doctor friend. Director crashed their dinner and is now talking to Kutcher about his script or something. She thinks he's dreamy and good at writing.

1:18:00-- Portman is driving around with her mom and some dude sleeping in the backseat.

1:20:45-- BMR is talking about the director and calling her a "sexy scientist." Accurate description.

1:24:00-- Portman called Kutcher and is all, "I miss you."

1:29:00-- Kutcher is hooking up with director lady and it's awkward.

1:33:20-- Kevin Kline is in the hospital. Girlfriend breaks up with him. There's a fluffy dog. Whatever.

1:37:20-- Portman just got over her Asberger's and now she cares. This has to be one of the worst reconciliation scenes I've ever seen.

1:39:30-- Breakfast, I guess.

1:40:00-- They ran to a hotel or something, and then they hold hands and it's over.

1:41:00-- Oh great, credits montage. Kevin Kline is now dating director lady. Not even funny.

1:41:25-- BMR is with blonde girl and they meet up with dude roommate.

1:41:50-- Ex-girlfriend who's afraid of old people in an elevator of old people.

1:42:00-- Portman and Kutcher look like they share really awkward kisses.

1:42:30-- Mandy Kaling is kind of slutty.

1:42:56-- Portman's sister is having a baby.

1:43:10-- Sex in a closet.



Let's talk about The Shadow (1994)

I remember seeing The Shadow in its original theatrical release. My few memories before rewatching it were that the dad was color-blind, "The sun is shining...but the ice is slippery," and how many times I tried to strike up a conversation with my 2nd grade crush Quinn about his The Shadow lunchbox. Clearly, pop culture has always been my social lubricant.

What I realize now is that 1994's rendition of the wealthy playboy who moonlights as crimefighter with psychic powers is full of old Hollywood fun. Alec Baldwin as Lamont Cranston/The Shadow is the perfect choice for an old 30s radio serial. When he warns, "Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows," I giggle with delight at his gravelly voice. Mostly, it's nice to a film in the vein of Indiana Jones that mostly pulls things off, full of pulpy framing and close-ups, reminiscent of 1930s/40s noir. The film itself starts to fall apart by the end, but there's enough charisma to make the journey worth it.

Let's take a look at some of the best parts of the film.

This backstory is straight up Batman Begins. The Shadow is some sort of opium drug ring leader or something. Whatever, he hides in the shadows.

Observe: when chest hair was allowed to grow freely. Some sort of psychic energies training is also going on.

Old school font, enter the Shadow's changed life.

Fabulous mafia scene. Love the 30s/40s focus and framing.

With that fake nose, the Shadow just looks like another one of the Baldwin brothers.

Art deco!

Hello, handsome! I wish Jack Donaghy went with the slicked back hair.

Enter the sassy Margo Lane (Penelope Ann Miller). She brings in classic Hollywood love interest realness without getting campy.

I like a good eye closeup.

Blah blah blah, Genghis Khan's surviving family, Shiwan Khan (John Lone).

Note: Tim Curry and Ian McKellan were in the same movie at one point in their careers. Both are equally bumbling.

Love the dreamy, fuzzy background fused with the focused background of Margo's dad.

Check out those lapels!

Did I mention Peter Boyle was the Shadow's personal (taxi) driver?

I want to have this kitchen someday.

Fabulous chiaroscuro use. The shadowing obfuscates the Shadow's identity visually as the Shadow himself clouds his identity with his mind.

Lol, the Shadow just made up the name for the atomic bomb!

This makes me think of Mad Men. I also love that the sign is actually blowing smoke.

This is just a pretty shot. Beautiful brainwashing.

The body language in this scene is so graceful and delightful. Also, nice beard, villain guy.


I wish I could show you the choreography the actors and camera took to get here.

Fun shot!

Love a final showdown in mirrors.

Speaking of Indiana Jones, a large atom bomb is chasing them down some stairs!

Even the bomb is art deco. Also, color blind Chekhov's gun shot off with one second to spare.

Love how cheesy this beatdown is.

Haha! Old mental hospitals were inhumane and awful!

Nice end of movie mug.

And of course I have to mention the unfortunate credits song, "Original Sin," performed by Taylor Dayne. It's one part Tina Turner, one part Bonnie Tyler, with a dash of Celine Dion "It's All Coming Back" and Carly Simon's "Let the River Run." I just can't describe how awesome and misfitting this song choice is:

This film is so close to being memorable, in a cult classic sort of way, but it just falls short. However, it's worth a rewatch because it's so much fun.


Getting to know me, I guess

So I was tagged in one of the tag chains (thanks, Shauna), and I figured I could answer some personal-ish questions about myself on my mostly pop culture blog.*

1. What was the weirdest/worst date you've ever been on?
When I was at BYU, one of the guys in our ward was getting a massive group of people together and lining them up on blind dates. I agreed to the occasion because I was bored/interested/looking for normal guys. Turns out, there was really no rhyme or reason to to the lining up, and my date was a master's student in computer science (in BYU land, this probably meant that he was around 25, or 5-6 years older than me at the time), and incredibly boring. I hate to brag, but I'm pretty good with people despite my introverted nature. I'm especially good with socially awkward people. However, this guy was giving me nothing. Pop culture references? Nothing. Making fun of an advertisement? Nothing. Simple getting to know you questions? Monosyllabic answers.

Luckily, the bulk of the date involved watching student films, so talking was discouraged anyway.

Unluckily, the another couple in our group was all "WOULDN'T IT BE SO MUCH FUN TO FIND TREATS AND SOMETHING FOR HALLOWEEN FOR ANOTHER GROUP?" Despite the painful enthusiasm, I was excited by the prospect of sugar. We searched Macey's with an "e" and found Dixie Cups and a cheap CD that looked like it was burned on a home computer promising terrible spooky music. These were obviously my choice since nothing can beat the wooden spoon experience and nothing is funnier than things that aren't actually scary. My date just kind of agreed to everything, while following me around the store. I think he almost cracked a smile, but I'm pretty sure his face was just getting tired of being a blank slate. When we regrouped with another couple, I was so glad for people that responded to my jokes but mostly for laughing at the terrible CD because it was an awesome find.

Moral of the story: orange and vanilla Dixie Cups are delicious.

2. Who was your celebrity crush in high school?
Do we only have to pick one?

Milo Ventimiglia as Jess in Gilmore Girls. Clearly the best of Rory's boyfriends in that he was hot and literate and not super controlling

Michael Vartan as Michael Vaughn on Alias. Obsessed with this show and this character. I should really rewatch the series even though only seasons 1-3 are worth it.

Jonathan Crombie as Gilbert Blythe in Anne of Green Gables. I just love his Canadian "I'm sooorry."

Clark Gable as anything. Great tough guy, but surprisingly funny.

Hugh Dancy as Daniel Deronda. Rewatched this miniseries several times.

Harrison Ford as anything except that one cop in Hollywood Homicide. This seems self-explanatory. He's a crush for all ages.

Jonathan Rhys Meyers in Bend it Like Beckham. We both have busted knees--we were meant to be together!

3. What was your dream job when you were in elementary school?
I don't remember having a dream job. I've always been terribly indecisive even in my dream world.

4. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I haven't been to too many places in the world, but I'd have to say somewhere close to a coast where it was warm, but not too hot. Or England or something.

5. What is your biggest pet peeve?
Salesmanship. I don't care if you're selling shoes, a job, or religion, sales tactics are many times discompassionate and result in buyer's remorse. This is why I'm not in business.

6. How do you deal with conflict in your life?
Running away, thinking about the problem way too much, talking to select friends about it, and eventually doing something productive about it.

7. Do you journal outside of blogging?
No, especially right now when each entry would be, "Woke up late. Stepped outside for 2 minutes. Watched TV. Read stuff on the internet." Cannot wait to be employed.

8. What is the weirdest advice you'd ever gotten from your parents?
I still don't know if my mom was kidding about these:

"It's better to look good than to feel good."

"Boys don't make passes at girls in eye glasses."

9. What 3 items would you want with you on a deserted island?
A knife, a really long book, and Sayid from LOST.

10. Where do you go to "get away from it all"?
I love going for walks, especially if the destination is a park with a body of water nearby. Sometimes I listen to music, other times I just let myself think.

11. In stressful times, what do you do to find peace?
Watch even more TV/movies. Being stressed usually makes it hard for me to sleep, and I'm usually too inside my head to stop thinking about problems while reading, so my only respite is watching something to distract my brain. This usually ends in me weeping at whatever I'm watching and thinking about how stressed I am some more. I may need another solution.

*I also reserve the right to not come up with questions and tag people. You're welcome.


The Voice recaps

Don't worry guys, I'm still going to recap The Voice, I just don't want to recap auditions. You still want a recap of auditions?

Back-story manipulation.
Christina being sassy and a little bit annoying.
Adam being good looking and manipulative.
Blake being the cutest.
Cee-Lo being chill and being overtly sexual.
Occasional heartbreaking rejection.
Lots of inter-judge fighting.
Tears. Lots of tears.
Hugs. So many hugs.

Mostly, I just like that the show doesn't put completely talentless singers up for mocking and is slightly more edgy than American Idol. It's the small things, really.

Anyway, there's at least a week or two left of auditions. Hopefully, I'll have a new laptop* by the time the competition heats up, and I can live/day-late blog for y'all.

*any recommendations? My lappy just died.

ETA: This Prince medley delights me more than words can say.