The funniest thing I read over the weekend were the comments on Rotten Tomatoes over one reviewer’s positive review of Jack and Jill (very, very naughty language) because he screwed up what was looking like a 0% rating, which has only happened a couple times in the history of the site. Even the review snippets were hysterical. As one person put it — “I’m not even sure this qualifies as a movie.” Awesome. I said it in my Sunday column last week — Adam Sandler should be a good sport and show upm at the Razzies to pick up his guaranteed worst actor award. There hasn’t been a sure thing like this since Titanic won for Best Picture at the Oscars. It still managed to scare up $26 million, which I’m sure isn’t what the studio had in mind, but when you’re talking about what could be the worst movie in Adam Sandler’s storied acting career — and that’s saying something — you have to be happy with what you get.
In case you missed it: Poconos got another shout out on The Office on Thursday. This, by my count, at least the third time this season they’ve mentioned something in the Poconos. It wasn’t very obvious — the keyboardist in the episode was named Curtis Dorough, and Darryl used to see him all the time at the Deer Head. I thought that could be an overt reference to Stroudsburg’s own Bob Dorough. I wondered, but didn’t do anything about it. Then over the weekend I got an email from Office executive producer (and Stroudsburg high school grad) Danny Chun: “not sure if you caught them, but in this week’s episode the keyboardist is named Curtis Dorough (named after Bob Dorough) and Darryl says he used to watch him every week at the Deerhead. Poconos!” Good to know we have some representation on one of the biggest shows on TV.
There should be some kind of official “levels of scandal” meter. Level 1: It makes local news. Level 2: It makes local news for two days. (skipping ahead …) Level 126: You get attention in the late-night news magazine shows. Level 127 (out of 128): You get skewered on SNL. So congratulations, Penn State. All this thing has to do now is get the attention of an Obama news conference, and we’re there.
Didn’t get a chance to mention the whole Billy Crystal hosting the Oscars thing last week, but what a wussy move by the Oscars. They spent two months saying how great they were for finding such an edgy comic, how this was a new day at the Oscars and how getting Eddie Murphy would shake things up and make the show have some kind of credibility as even remotely approaching comedic acceptance now. Murphy bolted when his trusted partner, Brett Ratner, was fired from the show over his gay slurs and general behavior of the last few weeks. (I’m with the gay slur — but talking about his sex life in Stern? That gets you fired? Sheesh. This is a really prudish world we live in sometimes.) Ratner directed Murphy in Tower Heist, and apparently, he was the only person he trusted do manage his Oscars gig. The Oscars then had a choice. Find someone just as edgy and with as much sasr to take over and keep the momentum of credibility going, or … get Billy Crystal, who now gets his picture in the dictionary next to “fallback plan.” They couldn’t have found anyone more different and with less current comedy credibility than Crystal. He’s now hosting the show for the 876th time, which is weird, because I thought there were only, like, 80-some shows. Maybe it just feels like it’s been that many. And shouldn’t Crystal have been in a movie in the last five years to host the Oscars? Or done anything other than an interview on the MLB Network I caught the other day? Oh wait, how could I forget the Tooth Fairy? Shame on me. Before that, his last live-action role was Analyze That — in 2002. In February of 2012, anyone 25 years old would have been 15 when an under-performing sequel to a 1999 movie was released. They also most likely wouldn’t know how to properly pronounce “You look mah-vel-ous.” They know the show will be in high-def, right? That’s not Crystal’s best look.
Someone is going to have to explain the logic here. Boardwalk Empire will release its season 1 DVD on Jan. 10. That date is after season 2 ends, after the Christmas buying season when DVD sales are way, way up and in no way helps HBO get extra viewers for the show. The only way to explain this is some kind of colossal failure on HBO’s part to get the DVD out on time. There can’t be any other explanation, right? I was going to take time to watch the DVD at the end of summer — when it should have come out — and possibly decide to order up HBO for a few months if I liked it, but not no more. I’ll be two seasons behind in a couple weeks, and that’s enough for me to pass.
So … Hunger Games. I know nothing about it. Never heard of the book until the movie was announced. Have read little to nothing about it and only glanced at the first teaser — which showed nothing. So if the studio wants to make its money, then this new trailer is its first opportunity to hook me in. So here is what I gather -- Running Man meets Quidditch to the death. Right? Right. Good enough. Being a retread of two different movies isn’t the worst thing in the world — especially when the two movies are pretty good. So I’m willing to take Hunger Games on its own merit when I watch it on FX in 2014. Sorry. It just doesn’t seem like something I’m rearranging my schedule for — although apparently Puss in Boots is (saw it yesterday for my 3-year-old’s first movie experience, solid B, I laughed way more in it than I did in Take Me Home Tonight). One tip — Jennifer Lawrence sitting in some secluded spot talking about her feelings with her crush in the trailer is getting pretty old, pretty quick. It’s the same thing she did in the X-Men trailer last year. TRAILER GRADE: B-