Friday, December 31, 2010

Day 32 - Racism in Julie & Julia (pt. 2)

Day 32.

Yesterday, I talked about "blackground actors," a phenomenon where the creators of a movie deliberately shoehorn black and non-white people into the background of unimportant scenes just for the sake of having diversity. Let me just say that I have no problem with non-white actors. I do, however, have a problem with racial tokenism--Nora Ephron, I'm looking at you.

I kept my eyes out for such instances during today's viewing and found a few within the first half hour.







Maybe I'm completely off-base here, as this is supposed to be New York and there are definitely non-white people in New York, but for some reason, it just seems forced to me. It almost seems as if there's some kind of unspoken racial quota to meet and using non-white background actors is Julie & Julia's way of meeting it.

Which leads me to think, aside from actually crafting a fully-developed, strong non-white character, is there any way to amend this kind of thing? I mean, you can't just say "Hey, get rid of these black people in the background." But isn't it just as wrong to say "Hey, let's get more black people in the background?" Troublesome stuff. Does Julie & Julia actually hate black people or is this just a byproduct of Hollywood system? Are the pressures of being politically correct inadvertently making all movies of today racist? Is there anything lazier than using vague rhetorical questions to illustrate a point?

I don't know the answers to those questions. But I do know that Julie & Julia is fucking racist. And on that note, Happy New Year's Eve, everyone!

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "But that will give me something to do in Oslo."

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Day 31 - Racism in Julie & Julia (pt. 1)

Day 31.

An entire month has passed since I first set out on this crazy journey of mine and yet, I am still here, watching Julie & Julia and blogging away like an idiot. Did I ever plan on making it this far? Honestly, no. But am I glad that you, my devoted readers, have essentially forced me to follow through with your kind, kind words (and threatening notes tied to bricks thrown through my window). So congratulations to all of us (but mostly me) for making it this far! 1 month down, only 11 more to go.

***

I'm just gonna come out and say it. Julie & Julia is racist. All four out of the four leads (Julie & Eric Powell, Julia & Paul Child) are white. All of Julie's friends are white (not including her cubicle buddy, who we will touch upon later). Everyone in 1950s France is white. This movie is white, white, white.

Number of white people: 9   Number of non-white people: 0
Number of white people: 3   Number of non-white people: 0
Number of white people: 2   Number of non-white people: 0
Number of white fish: 1   Number of non-white fish: 0

So maybe this seemingly all-white cast is just a product of the stories they're based on, right? I mean, the real-life Julie, Julia and their respective husbands were white, so logically they'd cast white actors to play them. I think that's bullshit. Color-blind casting, people! Ever heard of it? You pick the best actor for the job, regardless of race. If only Nora Ephron wasn't a white supremacist, maybe we could've gotten some truly inspired casting.

You're the MOTHERFUCKING butter to my bread!!

But that being said, just because your leads are white doesn't necessarily mean that your film is racist. It just so happens that this one is. So how do you address this problem? I don't know, maybe try to show a realistic, well-developed non-white character at least once throughout the entire 2 hours of this movie. How do you not address this problem? I don't know, maybe deliberately cast black/non-white actors as peripheral characters in order to appear not racist. That kind of tokenism is just as offensive and racist as leaving them out altogether. It's just another way to say "Hey, this movie isn't bigoted and racist! Look, we have a black guy!"

A black mailman, no less. Not racist at all.

Maybe I'm being too hard on Julie & Julia. After all, Julie's presumably good workplace friend, Ernestine, is black. Ernie, as Julie so endearingly calls her (slave name?), is often there to provide moral support for Julie as the blog becomes more and more successful. Ernestine seems like she could be a strong character, except for the fact that she isn't. For the entire movie, she has three scenes totaling for about 20 seconds of screen time.

This is actually the closest you get to seeing her entire marginalized face.
Julie Powell patronizes her only black friend by playing paddy-cake with her.

So apparently, in the racist world of Julie & Julia, black people are only good for giving encouraging thumbs ups and congratulatory ethnic hand claps. Nice, Nora Ephron, nice. And even though she's in three scenes, she only has one line.

"I didn't tell him, I swear."

Yes, that is her one line in the entire film: "I didn't tell him, I swear." Let me provide some context. Julie has just skipped a day of work in order to cook/work on her blog and now she's in trouble with her boss, who has just asked to see her. Of course, right away, Julie shoots an accusatory look at her black officemate (who has never done anything but give Julie her support), forcing Ernestine to have to defend herself. This kind of thing has clearly happened before, judging by how quickly Ernestine jumps to say that she wasn't the one who ratted her out. Also, it never seems to cross Julie's mind that maybe her boss read that she was playing hooky on the DAILY BLOG that she posts ON THE INTERNET. Judging from what I've seen every day for the last month, Julie is just a racist bitch.

Oh, wait, nevermind--my mistake, Ernestine had four scenes in the film.


I think that's her "afro-styled ethnic hair" in the background there. Or at least that's what the producers of this movie would have probably called it, the racist bastards. Which leads us to a phenomenon I like to call "blackground actors," or in other words, another form of racial tokenism where black actors are placed in the background of shots for the sole purpose of having black people in the movie. Tomorrow, I will investigate this phenomenon further, as I'm pretty sure Julie & Julia employs it on multiple occasions. Until then, I urge you all to begin writing letters to the NAACP.

(To be continued...)

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "But I think it calls for a great bottle of wine."

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Day 30 - Time of Possession

Day 30.

There is a statistic in football called time of possession, which is basically what it says it is--how long each team has possession of the ball. I thought it'd be cool (read: super tedious) to figure out times of possession for Julie & Julia i.e. how many minutes are dedicated to Julia Child's part of the story vs. how many minutes are dedicated to Julie Powell's. The results below:

0:00-0:50  Opening Credits (50 seconds)
0:50-3:17 = Julia Child (2 minutes, 27 seconds)
3:17-5:24 = Julie Powell (2 minutes, 7 seconds)
5:24-6:17 = Julia Child (53 seconds)
6:17-15:18 = Julie Powell (9 minutes, 1 second)
15:18-15:25 = Julia Child (7 seconds)
15:25-15:33 = Julie Powell (8 seconds)
15:33-15:49 = Julia Child (16 seconds)
15:49-15:53 = Julie Powell (4 seconds)
15:53-16:04 = Julia Child (11 seconds)
16:04-16:12 = Julie Powell (8 seconds)
16:12-16:16 = Julia Child (4 seconds)
16:16-19:02 = Julie Powell (2 minutes, 46 seconds)
19:02-26:17 = Julia Child (7 minutes, 15 seconds)
26:17-31:01 = Julie Powell (4 minutes, 44 seconds)
31:01-38:36 = Julia Child (7 minutes, 35 seconds)
38:36-46:46 = Julie Powell (8 minutes, 10 seconds)
46:46-50:41 = Julia Child (3 minutes, 55 seconds)
50:41-54:38 = Julie Powell (3 minutes, 57 seconds)
54:38-1:06:41 = Julia Child (12 minutes, 3 seconds)
1:06:41-1:10:38 = Julie Powell (3 minutes, 57 seconds)
1:10:38-1:17:15 = Julia Child (6 minutes, 37 seconds)
1:17:15-1:21:36 = Julie Powell (4 minutes, 21 seconds)
1:21:36-1:28:29 = Julia Child (6 minutes, 53 seconds)
1:28:29-1:34:59 = Julie Powell (6 minutes, 30 seconds)
1:34:59-1:39:38 = Julia Child (4 minutes, 39 seconds)
1:39:38-1:39:42 = Julie Powell (4 seconds)
1:39:42-1:39:45 = Julia Child (3 seconds)
1:39:45-1:39:48 = Julie Powell (3 seconds)
1:39:48-1:39:52 = Julia Child (4 seconds)
1:39:52-1:39:56 = Julie Powell (4 seconds)
1:39:56-:1:39:58 = Julia Child (2 seconds)
1:39:58-1:40:00 = Julie Powell (2 seconds)
1:40:00-1:40:02 = Julia Child (2 seconds)
1:40:02-1:40:10 = Julie Powell (8 seconds)
1:40:10-1:40:11 = Julia Child (1 second)
1:40:11-1:40:12 = Julie Powell (1 second)
1:40:12-1:40:14 = Julia Child (2 seconds)
1:40:14-1:40:15 = Julie Powell (1 second)
1:40:15-1:40:23 = Julia Child (8 seconds)
1:40:23-1:40:39 = Julie Powell (16 seconds)
1:40:39-1:41:04 = Julia Child (25 seconds)
1:41:04-1:46:16 = Julie Powell (5 minutes, 12 seconds)
1:46:16-1:52:21 = Julia Child (6 minutes, 5 seconds)
1:53:21-1:58:15 = Julie Powell (4 minutes, 54 seconds)
1:58:15-1:59:22 = Julia Child (1 minute, 7 seconds)
1:59:22-2:03:33 = End Credits (4 minutes, 11 seconds)

Julia Child TOTAL: 60 minutes, 54 seconds
Julie Powell TOTAL: 60 minutes, 38 seconds

So the screen time is pretty much split evenly between Child and Powell, with Child getting the slightest of edges. Weird, because it seems like Powell's parts alone drag on for hours. Hope that this is as interesting for you as it was boring and awful for me. I swear on my life that I'll never do simple math again.

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "Don't knock marshmallows."

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Day 29 - The Fighter

Day 29.

So I went to my local cinema and saw The Fighter today, which was the first non-Julie & Julia movie I've seen in awhile. Naturally, I didn't stray too far from the course, as Amy Adams had a supporting role as Mark Wahlberg's trashy, but supportive girlfriend, Charlene.

Mark Wahlberg is not Mark Ruffalo either. Close, though.  

It was weird to see Amy Adams playing someone who isn't Julie Powell, but she was surprisingly good at it. I don't know, I sometimes forget that she is actually a good actress instead of this bitchy blog woman.

Anywho, she was a little annoying in The Fighter, but the movie was great. Christian Bale is a lock for the best supporting actor Oscar, as far as I'm concerned. But back to Amy Adams--her character meant well and wanted to pry Mark Wahlberg from his destructive family so he could become a better fighter. Pretty good performance, I'd say. She actually gets into a physical fight with another chick in the movie so that was pretty badass. The only thing Julie Powell ever fought was her debilitating EATING DISORDER. No, but actually--eating disorders are serious business. Don't joke about them. That was uncool of me.

Also, they made Amy Adams look real trashy for the part, so that was something I wasn't used to seeing.


Though I definitely could get used to seeing this.

Yeah, so basically, what I got from this experience is that actresses play different roles in different movies. Weird, right? Is this a phenomenon that other people are familiar with? I'd like to know. Shoot me an email at lawrenceandjulieandjulia@gmail.com. I get pretty lonely at night.

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "I noticed your legs straightaway."

Monday, December 27, 2010

Day 28 - Is Your Life Really That Bad, Julie Powell?

Day 28.

Julie Powell has a fair share of problems. She has a dead-end job, terrible friends and a grating personality. But I have to ask, is her life really that bad? Because I know she has at least one going for her...

***

Today's Topic of Discussion: YOU ARE LITERATE.

That's right--the secret's out, Julie. You can read! And you can write! So what do you really have to complain about? I realize that according to the latest census data, the American literacy rate is 99% right now, which seems pretty good at first glance. But if you think about it, don't you already have to be literate to fill out a census form? I mean, really, if the person can't read or write, how are they supposed to fill out a form indicating so? The stats are biased towards literate people. I'm calling shenanigans on this.

Do you know how many people would kill to be doing what you're doing right now?

Also, a brief side note concerning the reported 1% of illiterate citizens in the U.S.--how did the census people find out they couldn't read or write? Did they get back a bunch of blank census forms? Or maybe they just counted ones with scribbles/smiley faces on it? Someone look into this. 

Flaws in census logic aside, there are presumably a shitload of illiterate adults out there. You should count yourself lucky that you aren't one of them, Julie Powell. Do you realize how much harder the Julie/Julia Project would've been if you couldn't read or write? Nearly impossible. Imagine having to cook your way through Julia Child's cookbook if you couldn't fucking read. You couldn't do it. Hell, you can't even imagine it right now, because an imagination is nourished by reading at a young age.

Plus, you think you could blog as an illiterate? Highly unlikely. I mean, you probably don't have to be a genius to run Hungover Owls or Perez, but you at least have to have a basic understanding and handle of the English language (for Hungover Owls, at least). And that book deal you get later on? You can forget about it. Only 10% of all books are written by illiterate people.

So be sure to thank your parents for reading to you at night, JP. Thank your elementary school teachers for showing you the difference between the long and short "o" sounds. Thank your local street sign makers for forcing you to learn the words "Stop," "Yield" and "Speed Limit 65."

And finally, thank the much-maligned American educational system, to which you owe all your success for making you a literate adult. God Bless America.

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "They were slapping folks in the face right and left, and I was sweating like a pig."

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Day 27 - Screenshots of Julie & Julia Taken Out of Context

Day 27.

Below are some stills that I pulled from today's viewing of Julie & Julia. I have rearranged them, along with their subtitles, for your viewing pleasure.













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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "Well Done, Madame Child."

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Day 26 - Julie, Julia & Jesus: A Christian Parable

Day 26.

I am not a religious person by any definition of the word, but that doesn't mean I can't celebrate Christmas the best way I know how: by trying to find Christian symbolism in Julie & Julia. I apologize in advance for any and all instances of blasphemy and sacrilege.

Happy birthday, bro.
Julia Child = Jesus Christ

It's pretty obvious from the start--Julia Child is a stand-in for the lord and savior, Jesus Christ. Aside from having the same initials, J.C., the two both have the ability to perform miracles, a devoted legion of followers and a passion for carpentry. Don't believe me? Just look at the casting. No one on Earth is more Christlike than Meryl Streep (except for maybe Morgan Freeman, who makes a damn good God). But really, Meryl is probably the most beautiful, graceful and elegant woman on the planet, whereas Jesus doesn't look too shabby himself. Both have been called the true messiah and Son of God. Both have walked on water and turned it into wine. Both have died for our sins and brought salvation to humankind--Julia through her cooking and ebullient personality, Jesus through crucifixion and subsequent resurrection. The parallels are obvious. Julia Child is Jesus Christ.

The real Last Supper.

In addition to the overwhelming Julia Child is Christ evidence, Julie Powell and her husband prove themselves to be devout disciples of Julia/Jesus, as they spend much of their time eating bread (the body of Christ) and drinking wine (the blood of Christ).




Not Mark Ruffalo loooooves eating Christ.








And to wash it all down? Bloooooood.





Plus, there's the whole obvious worshiping aspect of the Julie/Julia relationship dynamic. I mean, Amy Adams cooks a recipe out of Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking (a.k.a. the Bible) every single day. And the act of blogging can be clearly read as going to a daily mass. I mean, you don't have to be a pious Christian to pick up on the religious undertones of this film.

A photogenic multi-ethnic person finishes her prayer to the Lord Jesus Christ.
Amy Adams leaves a stick of butter for her savior, Meryl Streep.

So there you go, Julie & Julia is the most Christian film since The Passion of the Christ. I wonder if Mel Gibson's foul mouth and raging antisemitism will tarnish this movie's legacy as well. But I suppose that's for another day. Until then, folks--Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "Did you put something down the sink?"

Friday, December 24, 2010

Day 25 - 'Twas the Night Before Julie & Julia

Day 25.
3-Time Best Actor Emmy Winner Bryan Cranston playing Santa Claus

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, ‘cept for me and my mouse;
The cursor, that is—gliding ‘round on the screen,
Of my quaint Macbook Pro, polished to a high sheen.
I brought up my Netflix, scrolled down through the queue,
90 movies in waiting, which one shall I view?
Maybe Benjamin Button? When Harry Met Sally?
With so many options, one can hardly keep tally;
Zombieland, The Kite Runner, and Lost (Season 5),
That’s more that can fit on my external hard drive;
There’s Jaws and The Omen--even Jerry Maguire,
Or Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire.

Tons of movies to see and so little time,
To ignore them all would be the real crime.
But that’s just what I did, because I’m on a quest
To watch the same film again—now that’s the real test.
J&J haunts my dreams, taints my eyes and my mind,
But I gotta push through, my contract is signed.
The movie begins, the 25th screening so far,
It’s beginning to leave an indelible scar,
You know, on my sanity—surely that’s in peril?
Oh wait, nevermind, just as long as there’s Meryl,
This movie won’t suck—not completely at least,
And I’ll finally be able to conquer this beast.
Oh look, I see Julie, Paul Child’s there too,
Stanley Tucci’s the man, oh shit—déjà vu.
I feel like I’ve been in this same place before,
Two hours a day, it’s become quite a chore.
But who am I to complain? This was my dumb idea;
At this point, I’d rather just have gonorrhea,
Than be forced to sit through another 5 seconds,
Of Amy Adams’ meltdowns—the worst, I do reckons.

But it ain’t all that bad, to tell you the truth;
At least I’m not dead, I still have my youth.
This blog can be helpful, an outlet of sorts,
And it gives me an excuse not to play sports.
I can vent and blow steam, all over the page;
The internet’s great for funneling rage.
I can air all my grievances, as you readers all know,
That the guy with Julie should be Mark Ruffalo.
Two hours later, the film finally ends,
And I feel a bit lonely, I miss all my friends.
But lucky for me, I’ll see them all the next day,
When I start over again—Yippee! Hip Hooray!
Can I make it a year? Who knows what will happen?
But one thing’s for sure—gotta cut down on my fappin’.
So I finish this entry and wish all of you well,
On this Christmas Eve (atheists, go to Hell!),
Goodnight and be merry from Lawrence, Julie and Julia,
Please come back tomorrow, read my blog or I’ll... spool ya?

Literally nothing rhymes with Julia.

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "Fire your assistant and don't hire a replacement.
"

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Day 24 - Julie & Julia Reimagined: As Dinosaurs

Day 24.

Have you ever wondered what Julie & Julia would be like if the main characters were played by dinosaurs? Because that's exactly what I was thinking today as I watched the movie for the 24th time. A sampling follows. 

Voice on Answering Machine: Hi, it's Barry Ryan from the Santa Barbara News-Press, and I'm writing an article about Julia Child's 90th birthday and I asked her about your blog, and frankly? She was kind of a pill about it so I thought--

Juliesaurus Rex: ROARRRR!!!

Juliesaurus Rex whips her tail around the room and smashes the answering machine. She then proceeds to eat Not Mark Ruffalo.

***
Awesome.
*** 

Paul Child: Someone is going to publish your book. Someone is going to read your book and realize what you've done. Because your book--is amazing. Your book--is a work of genius. Your book--is going to change the world. Do you hear me? 

Juliaraptor: RAWRRRR!!! 

Juliaraptor eats Stanley Tucci.

***

Juliesaurus Rex and Juliaraptor sit at a table. 

Juliesaurus Rex: ...so that's when I decided that enough was enough and told my hedge fund manager to take a hike. 

Juliaraptor: Good for you--I mean, how dare he? And in this volatile market economy? 

A meteor falls from the sky, crushing them both to death. 

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "Today we will begin by learning to boil eggs.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Day 23 - Another Famous Julie/Julia

Day 23.

As much as I enjoy shutting myself off from the outside world and living exclusively in my little Julie & Julia bubble, I will occasionally make my way to the surface world to see what's going on in the news. Unfortunately, a side effect of this project has resulted in me only being able to pay attention to news involving people named Julie and/or Julia. So screw you, Obama tax cuts--there are some news stories that simply can't be ignored. Julie Taymor is one of those stories.

"Yo, what up? I'm Julie Taymor."
You may not be familiar with her name just yet, but you should know that Julie Taymor is a theater/opera/movie director with such impressive works as Across the Universe and the stage adaptation of The Lion King already under her belt.

Oh, and she's also a crazy person.

Could a sane person think this up? I think not.

Allow me to explain--Julie Taymor is the woman behind the doomed-from-the-very-beginning Broadway musical, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark. Yes, that is correct, a stage adaptation of America's favorite web-slinging superhero. Seems logical, no? Let's follow the train of thought that went behind the creation of this thing:

1. Someone (Julie Taymor) decided that making a musical out of Spider-Man was a good idea.
2. Someone (Bono of U2) decided that writing the music to this Spider-Man musical was a good idea.
3. Some people (dumb investors) agreed that a Spider-Man musical was a good idea and proceeded to invest $65 million of their hard-earned cash into said good idea.
4. Everyone else realized that this was the worst idea ever.

Uhhhhh... Spider-Man?
So far, the production has been plagued by financial delays and actor injuries, as many of the flying stunts involve crazy harnesses and multiple aerial cable rigs. This actually sounds pretty cool, until you realize that this musical will most definitely kill somebody. Yesterday, tragedy befell the production yet again, when Christopher Tierney, the actor playing Spider-Man, fell 30 feet headfirst into a pit and broke his ribs. Oh, and did I mention that the musical is still in previews? It has not even officially began its Broadway run and it has already hospitalized 4 people. Good job, Julie Taymor.

And she shows no signs of slowing down. Originally, the musical's previews were planned to resume tonight, but then somebody finally stepped in and stopped this insane woman, who is apparently hellbent on killing her entire cast.

In addition to premeditated murder, Julie Taymor is also guilty of making a film adaptation of Shakespeare's The Tempest this year.

Russell Brand in The Tempest. Again, makes a ton of sense. 
Oh, Julie Taymor. You just seem to have a knack for making things that no actual person would want to see.

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "Someone is going to publish your book."

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Day 22 - Random Actor Tuesday: George Bartenieff

Day 22.

It's Random Actor Tuesday already? Man, time flies when you're watching a mediocre romantic comedy every day.

Today's featured guest is George Bartenieff, noted for playing Chef Max Bugnard of the Cordon Bleu Cooking School in Paris.

Mustache Mustache Mustache Mustache!!!
Mr. Bartenieff holds the honor of playing Julia Child's cooking teacher for an entire two minutes of screen time. Unlike others, he doesn't discriminate against Julia because she is a woman. He sees past her gender and views her only as his pupil. He also looks like Colonel Sanders.

Mustache!
Which got me thinking... could they possibly be the same person?

George Bartenieff: Born January 24, 1933 in Berlin, Germany. Known for a recurring role on Law & Order as Judge McNamara, as well as a guest spot in an episode of 30 Rock.

Harland David Sanders (aka "The Colonel"): Born September 9, 1890 in Henryville, Indiana. Died December 16, 1980. Known for founding Kentucky Fried Chicken, as well as for keeping a secret blend of 11 herbs and spices.

So it's unlikely that these guys are the same person because Colonel Sanders died 30 years ago. Unlikely, but not impossible. What if the Colonel faked his own death at a ripe 90 years of age because he is secretly immortal? And if he is immortal, what better way to spend his time than to have a prolific acting career?

Immortal? Who, me?
Now curious, I plugged the name "George Bartenieff" into an anagram solver to see if the results could possibly point towards his other alias, Colonel Sanders. And lo and behold, I fell into a conspiracy of epic proportions. Possible anagrams such as "Fearing Beet Gofer" and "Teenage Fiber Frog" are huge clues that clearly point to our man Sanders as the culprit.

"I gave her my blend of secret herbs and spices" - Afroman
So what do we do with this information? Now that we know the Colonel is alive, well and acting in Julie & Julia, do we ask him for his secret to eternal youth? Or perhaps for some acting tips for Southerners hoping to mask their accents? Or maybe he'll reveal where he buys his mustache combs?

No, none of those. There is only one question to ask the newly-rediscovered-to-be-living Colonel Sanders: WHO LET THIS HAPPEN?

Ummmm... Sorry, maybe you misheard me. I specifically said "no diabetes."
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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "It is here too--cats and dogs."

Monday, December 20, 2010

Day 21 - Less Successful Blog-Based Movies w/Alliterative Titles

Day 21.

Mikey & Michael

This film contrasts the life of Michael Jackson, the original King of Pop, with the life of Mikey Thomas, a young New Yorker who plans on spending a year molesting all 524 kids involved in Jackson's trial and then blogging about the experience.

Adian & Adolf

This film contrasts the life of Adolf Hitler, noted German dictator and leader of the Nazi party, with the life of Adian Smith, a young New Yorker who plans on spending a year recreating World War II and the Holocaust and then blogging about the experience. 

Moe J. & O. J. (not an alliteration, but I can't come up with anything better)

This film contrasts the life of O.J. Simpson, Pro Football Hall-of-Famer, with the life of Moe Johnson, a young New Yorker who plans on spending a year murdering his wife and her friend Ronald Goldman and then blogging about the experience. 

Oskar & Osama

This film contrasts the life of Osama bin Laden, terrorist-at-large, with the life of Oskar Kokoshka, young New Yorker who plans on spending a year planning the 9/11 terrorist attacks and then blogging about the experience (Wait, that was in poor taste. I apologize).

Carl & Carson

This film contrasts the life of Carson Daly, noted late-night talk show host, with the life of Carl Weathers, a young New Yorker who plans on spending a year watching Late Call with Carson Daly and then killing himself afterwards.

Worse than Hitler and Osama.
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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "I can't imagine Dorothy running off with Ivan Cousins."

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Day 20 - The Food in Julie & Julia vs. The Food I Eat

Day 20.

Those of you who've seen Julie & Julia before know that it's basically just a giant food porn exhibition. And as a fan of pornography of all types, I'd be a fool not to share it with you all.




Yup, this is what I'm forced to watch every day--shot after shot of mouth-watering, drool-inducing, straight-up delicious-looking food. Is the use of the previous hyphenated adjectives redundant? Yes. Does that make the food look any less delicious? No.

Naturally, one is prone to hunger attacks when watching two hours of this every day. Even on my 20th viewing of Julie & Julia, I have yet to grow immune to the effects of the film's excessive display of food porn. In other words, I get hungry. 

And instead of getting to eat this:


I have to eat this:

Not quite the same experience.
This is what this movie has reduced me to--eating frozen taquitos in bed. That's right, I don't even bother to cook those things. Usually because the microwave is all the way downstairs and I'm sure as hell not going to go down a whole flight of stairs to heat up a few goddamn taquitos. They taste fine frozen anyways.

So screw you, Julie & Julia. Who do you think you are, dangling delectable food stuffs before me, when you very well know that all I have in this house are stale oreos and expired salsa?

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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "She's like your imaginary friend."

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Day 19 - Is Your Life Really That Bad, Julie Powell?

Day 19.

Julie Powell loooooves to complain about things in this movie. But in the grand scheme of things, does she really have that much to complain about? Last week, I tried to argue that living in Queens wasn't the worst thing in the world, but I soon incensed a few of my readers by saying so. Apparently, Queens really is that bad.

So let's try again, shall we? Time for another installment of:
Is Your Life Really That Bad, Julie Powell?

***

Today's Topic of Discussion: YOU HAVE AN UNLIMITED FOOD BUDGET.

Julie, as much as you love to unnecessarily stress out about your food blogging project, at least you can afford the luxury of having a food blogging project in the first place. I know that you haven't experienced this firsthand, but food is expensive. And the good food that you attempt to cook on a daily basis? In the real world, that would have cost you a fortune.

"Yes Julie, the food you are eating costs MONEY."

Now I realize that the real Julie Powell must have in fact, spent a fair amount of dough on groceries, but I still wonder where it all came from. After all, the movie portrays Julie as an entry-level cubicle worker for the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation--nothing to scoff at--but I can't imagine it affords her all of the extravagant food purchases she makes. And her husband is an editor for Archaeology Magazine, which probably pays the bills for their New York apartment. I'm not one to prod, but can their combined salaries really pay for lobster every night?

"This overgrown crayfish costs how much?

Lobster is expensive, people! And it's not only the lobster--she spends half of this moving buying beef for her crazy boeuf bourguignon. At least 10 minutes of screen time is dedicated to buying all this meat. You think I'm exaggerating? She has to buy it twice because she screwed it up the first time!


"Buy beef once, shame on you."

"Buy beef twice, shame on your extravagant wealth."

Who let her do this? I mean, sure, she ruined her stew the first time and now she has to cook it again for her famous guest. But maybe that's her own fault?

Would you like some cheese with that whine?

She is cooking with a Chateau Lafite 1787. Market Value: $160,000. Really, you're going to cook with super expensive wine? No wonder you ruined the stew. Next time, use olive oil like us regular folk. Still don't believe me when I say Julie Powell has extravagant food needs?

Quality Meats? Damn.

She shops at a place called Quality Meats! And what do you think the K&T stands for? Kaviar & Truffles, probably (I know Caviar is spelled with a "C." But this place is probably so fancy and expensive that they sell it with a "K."). Shit, woman--I'm here stuck at home, eating low-grade, chemical-injected beef from my local Regular Meats chain like a chump. How can you afford to splurge at such a fine establishment? Oh, I know why: because you have an unlimited food budget. I just want you to know that beef doesn't grow on trees, little lady. It grows in butcher shops.

"$5/lb? That doesn't seem so bad. Give me 100 lbs. OM NOM NOM NOM!!!"

Long story short, stop complaining about food, Julie Powell. At least you have a limitless supply of it. Which is a hell of a lot more than these guys can say.

I hate to invoke the tired old "mom" cliche that "there are children starving in Africa," but really? GOD DAMMIT, JULIE POWELL!! THERE ARE CHILDREN STARVING IN AFRICA!!!
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Julie & Julia
Quote of the Day: "I just read your blog and it was strange and uncharacteristically thoughtful."