It All Looks Delicious, I’ll Have One Of Everything

12 04 2010

Hello! Guess what? I have a FOOD BLOG!

http://ballroomblintz.wordpress.com/

Yes, a place for all of my specifically foodie musings, hoorah! I’m seeing if having a blog with a more streamlined focus will help me get back into regular blogging again. Don’t fret, I shall most probably keep posting non-food musings here. But if you’re hungry… to the ballroom with you!





Trailer Trash: You Can’t Handle The Truth!

24 02 2010

It seems, from looking through past incarnations of this segment, that I’ve waivered between calling it Trailer Talk and Trailer Trash. Inconsistency be thy name, Hayley! Well, this one can definitely be labeled Trash, seeing as the vast rash of films coming out in the next few months are generally making me want to lower my head onto the nearest flat surface and cry for the state of the film industry (with a few exception, o’ course).

You know the drill: I watch trailers, then tell you why the movie’s going to be awful. Here we go!

Cop Out

That’s it, people, Kevin Smith’s career is officially dead. Or at least completely bankrupt of any sense of vision, integrity and originality. Go on, watch that trailer and then WEEP.

Iron Man 2

Unlike 99% of the world’s movie-going population, I really wasn’t that keen on the first Iron Man. I don’t know what it was, but I was seriously bored out of my tiny head watching that film (I also had a traitorous voice in my head that kept shouting “Who do you think you are, Tony Stark, BRUCE WAYNE?”). And frankly, the direction was plodding at best. But hello, what do we have in the second film?… Oh, Mickey. You wonderous man, you. I heart you and would watch you in anything, I will even brave Scarlett Johanson and Jon Favreau’s by-the-books- direction to see you be awesome and explode cars.

Inception

At least with a Christopher Nolan film you know that the trailer is never going to give anything away. Though I must admit that it’s not the trailer, which is frankly just the same old “Look! Christopher Nolan’s doing some crazy shit again!” schtick, but the cast list that’s making me want to go see it (Leo! Marion Cotillard! Ken Watanabe! Cillian Murphy! Joseph Gordon-Levitt! Ellen Page! And of course Michael Caine. Look at that, get excited!).

Brothers

And we go from one trailer that tells you nothing to another that tells you too damn bloody much. Really, is there any impetus for me to see this film now? I know what’s going to happen, there’s no spaces left to fill in!

Youth In Revolt

Whenever anyone has been unfortunate enough to get me onto the topic of Michael Cera, these poor souls have been subject to my “I think he’s great, but he’s got to get into some more diverse roles now before he stops being cute and kills his career” rant. And in Youth In Revolt, well, we get halfway there. He’s still wandering around being naive, adorable and dorky *yawn*, but then there’s the evil doppleganger! God, I hope he pulls it off.

When In Rome

AAARRRGGGHHHH! AAAAARRRRGGGGHHHHHHHH! I WANT TO DIE! I…I can’t even put into words how goddamn awful this movie looks. The trailer itself makes it look like a mess, it seems almost morbidly unfunny, and can I officially state for the record that perky narration ala Sex and the City is my least favourite movie device EVER. And what are people like Lee Pace and Angelica Huston doing in this? Oh GOD!

Bronson

So this is Tom Hardy. Wow. WOW. Colour me impressed. Even if this does kind of come across as the Brits having a go at their own version of Chopper, it looks pretty damn awesome nonetheless. Australian release now, please!

A Single Man

This is finally released in Australia tomorrow, and guess who’s excited? I AM SO DAMN EXCITED. And THIS is absolutely how one should make a trailer that tells one nothing about the film, yet gets you to the point of punching old ladies out of the way in order to go see it. Please now go and make twenty billion more movies, Tom Ford, thank you.





Svenska!

11 02 2010

So remember that time I went to Sweden and said that I’d resume blogging come the end of January? And how now is February? You have now learnt an important lesson about how I am FULL OF LIES.

But yes, Sweden! It was super awesome. I trundled around in the snow and wore woolen bobble hats and ate many, many buns. Oh, Sweden is so very good at sweet buns. You are familiar already with my love of semlor (THE CREAM! SO MUCH CREAM! AHHHHHHHHYUM), but I was not prepared for the delicious bun explosion that was kanelbulle – basically a cinnamon danish THAT EXPLODED MY WEE MOUTH WITH SWEETNESS AND JOY, and I consumed about three a day and returned to Australian shores very roly-poly, but with a kanelbulle recipe, oh yes, there will be Swedish baking times.

I mostly hung around in Stockholm, but also got to go up to Kiruna, which is up north, within the Artic Circle no less! Having long been obsessed with articness it was something of a dream fulfilled. Zoe and I braved the icy winds and went northern lights spotting (a failure, sad to say), and also went on the night time dog sled ride, which was, just quietly, THE BEST THING EVER!

It really was something to stand out there on the edge of town, staring out across the snow towards the mountains that you knew would end up snarling all the way up to Norway, up to the Artic Sea; to look up and see more stars that you thought could possibly be contained in the one sky. It’s all just so cold and bleak and stark and in the face of it, well… your little problems seem very, very insignificant.

I left a lot of my little problems out there in the white.

Anyway, anyway, now I am returned, and things are looking a lot brighter than they were at the end of last year. I am going to uni again come March! I have a new boy to occupy my time with! I’m challenging myself to do more arts and write more and actually get all these stories and projects out of my head and into real, concrete form. Oh hey there, 2010, I am taking you ON!

Addendum: Remember my Golden Globes post? OH MY LORD HOW FUCKED WERE THOSE AWARDS?! SO FUCKED. Apart from Jimmy Cameron’s Pocahontas in Space running off with Best Picture Gong, who the hell decided that this is the year for Sandra Bullock to be winning best acting awards? WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU ALL????!!!

Bring on the Oscars, it’s going to be horrendous!





Best of the Flicks 2009

31 12 2009

So this originally was a lovely sprawling post with plenty of commentary. But what do you know, WordPress fucked up on me once I pressed publish and whoosh! The entire post disappeared. So here is the very brief, bare bones version of my top 10 films of 2009; may annotate in the New Year to explain my choices if I can be bothered.

10. Beautiful Kate

9. Humpday

8. Where The Wild Things Are

7. Whip It

6. Moon

5. Inglourious Basterds

4. The Damned United

3. Broken Embraces

2. Star Trek

1. Up





I Just Really Love A Comical Dog

24 12 2009

So, finally got around to seeing Avatar last night.

It’s pretty much Pocahontas in space.

Think I might have liked Pocahontas better too. It had songs and a comical dog.





“No. Yes. No. Yes. No. That’s Directing.”

21 12 2009

Good afternoon, my dear crumpets! How are we today? That’s tops, good to hear. Well, guess what? The noms for the Golden Globes were released the other day! Wait, what… what do you mean you don’t CARE? Oh hush, you are simply no fun. The Globes are there to show us pre-emptively how badly the Oscars are going to cock everything up, it’s like seeing into the future. And also they do TV!

So here are all the categories I care about, WITH COMMENTARY (lawks!). Be warned that a lot of the films nommed haven’t been released in Australia yet, so I’m probably going to waffle a lot about how excited I am to see/am indifferent to/have no interest in whatever film is in question.

Best Motion Picture – Drama

  • Avatar (I haven’t seen this yet. I know, I should be shot. I don’t even really want to see it either, I kind of just want to watch it so I can stop people going to me “Oh my GOD, you have to see it, it’s the best movie EVAS!!1!”)
  • The Hurt Locker (I missed this at MIFF and have been kicking myself over it. Kathryn Bigelow FTW!)
  • Inglourious Basterds (Crazy amazing AWESOME movie, but probably too crazytown for American voting panels)
  • Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire (Look, I don’t care how supposedly amazing this flick is, that is a goddamn obnoxious title. I don’t want to see something with that damn tangled mouthful of a title)
  • Up In The Air (I’ve watched the trailer and at best can muster up a “Meh?” I don’t know, I hope it’s better than it looks)

I really have to agree with Grrliz on this one – these are in the main some pretty boring looking flicks. Where is Moon? Star Trek (which hasn’t been nominated for ANYTHING, imagine how pissed I am at that)? Where The Wild Things Are? Up, which I know is in the animated category, I would class as even better than Inglourious. What the eff, Hollywood Foreign Press?

Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy

  • (500) Days of Summer (Oh yay, that’s pleasantly surprising, hooray for remembering it!)
  • The Hangover (Very funny, but kind of have to admit it’s strange seeing it nominated for awards. Suppose that’s the power of a hefty box office return)
  • It’s Complicated
  • Julie & Julia (Forget it, Jake, it’s Meryltown)
  • Nine (Glad to see an actual musical in this category! And how excited am I to see this? I AM SO DAMN EXCITED)

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama

  • Jeff Bridges for Crazy Heart
  • George Clooney for Up In The Air
  • Colin Firth for A Single Man (By all accounts apparently completely carries this film)
  • Morgan Freeman for Invictus (IT’S MORGAN FREEMAN PLAYING NELSON MANDELA, PEOPLE, IT’S A COMPLETE GIVEN, AWARD PLEASE!)
  • Tobey Maguire for Brothers (AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA… I’m sorry, I shouldn’t be so dismissive, but *snerk*, I’m sorry, my face won’t stay straight…)

Hang on… Where’s Sam Rockwell for Moon?! I CALL TRAVESTY!!!

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama

  • Emily Blunt for The Young Victoria (I LOVED THIS MOVIE! SO MUCH! Y’ALL NEED TO POP OUT AND SEE IT… NOW!)
  • Sandra Bullock for The Blind Side (Whut?)
  • Helen Mirren for The Last Station (Always nice to see the Dame up for a gong)
  • Carey Mulligan for An Education (This was easily the performance of the year for the ladies, but sadly I have a feeling that she’ll lose out to the lass from Precious: An Obnoxious Title)
  • Gabourey ‘Gabby’ Sidibe for Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire

Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy

  • Matt Damon for The Informant! (Ha ha, yes! He and the music were totally the best things about that movie, ohh, I kind of want him to win now)
  • Daniel Day-Lewis for Nine (What’s the bet that he’s going to win simply for being Daniel Day-Lewis?)
  • Robert Downey Jr. for Sherlock Holmes (I love you, Robert, but this seems a little incongruous)
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt for (500) Days of Summer (This is totally deserved, though I’m kind of a little surprised that Zooey Deschanel wasn’t nommed in the actress category for this film as well, she utterly carried a character that was almost designed to be hated and instead she managed to play her with a completely understandable dignified humanity)
  • Michael Stuhlbarg for A Serious Man (Argh, I need to see this, it’s been out here for weeks, I just haven’t gotten around to it)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy

  • Sandra Bullock for The Proposal (THIS IS A TRAVESTY)
  • Marion Cotillard for Nine
  • Julia Roberts for Duplicity (Really? REALLY?!)
  • Meryl Streep for It’s Complicated
  • Meryl Streep for Julie & Julia

Has it really been such a bad year for lead actresses in comedies that we’ve been forced to nom Meryl twice? We could have had Zooey for 500 Days here.

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture

  • Matt Damon for Invictus (Look, if Matt Damon doesn’t win anything I am going to be a sad panda, I love that man)
  • Woody Harrelson for The Messenger (Who has been super pleased at the sudden explosion of Woody Harrelson on our screens this year? I have been super pleased)
  • Christopher Plummer for The Last Station
  • Stanley Tucci for The Lovely Bones (I have massive mad love for Stanley Tucci, and am figuring that watching him in The Lovely Bones will be as guilt-ridden an experience as watching Ralph Fiennes in Schindler’s List)
  • Christoph Waltz for Inglourious Basterds (Performance of the year for the lads by a wide, WIDE margin)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture

  • Penelope Cruz for Nine (Y’all know my giddy infatuation for Ms Cruz, assume that I’m swooning then move on)
  • Vera Farmiga for Up In The Air
  • Anna Kendrick for Up In The Air (Who IS Anna Kendrick? All I know her for is Twilight, where she apparently is the only bright spot in those epic drudges of terrible movies)
  • Mo’Nique for Precious:Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire
  • Julianne Moore for A Single Man

Best Director – Motion Picture

  • Kathryn Bigelow for The Hurt Locker (YEEESSSSSSS! Here is hopefully the first step to the first female director winning a best director Oscar. About time!)
  • James Cameron for Avatar (How predictable)
  • Clint Eastward for Invictus (Like Grrliz, can help but think they just reserve a slot for him every year now)
  • Jason Reitman for Up In The Air
  • Quentin Tarantino for Inglourious Basterds (Could you imagine the acceptance speech? Sad that because of the Cameron/Eastwood factor it probably won’t be a reality. Also, I want Bigelow to get it more)

Best Original Score – Motion Picture

  • Avatar (I’ve heard the music over the end credits from wandering in to clean cinemas at work, and dear lord did I get the most vomitous flashback of ‘holy shit it’s 1997 and Titanic is the biggest waste of three hours I’ve ever seen’)
  • The Informant! (After Matt Damon the best thing about this movie)
  • A Single Man
  • Up (Even just a couple of notes from this score popping into my head are enough to reduce me to the giant bubbering mess I was all three times I saw Up. Should win, just hope it will be taken as seriously as the non-kids friendly flicks)
  • Where The Wild Things Are (If Up doesn’t get the gong, this should. Hope Karen O gets the Best Original Song category as well)

Best Animated Film

  • Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs
  • Coraline
  • Fantastic Mr. Fox
  • The Princess and the Frog
  • Up

Look how strong this field is this year! (Except for the Disney, what the hell is it doing here?) 2009 was an amazing year for animation, I’d be happy to see Coraline, Fox (my boy Wes Anderson doing animation for the first time, I’M SO PROUD! {yes, I’ve reconciled myself to the clear Americanisation of a British tale, I can never stay mad at Wes for long}), or Cloudy win (Cloudy was heavily underrated, I loved it so much!). But… Up was clearly the film of the year, animated or otherwise, no question.

Best Foreign Language Film

  • Los abrazos rotos
  • Baaria
  • Das weisse Band – Eine deutsche Kindergeschichte
  • La nana
  • Un prophete

Wow, I’m surprised, I’ve heard of none of these except for Los abrazos rotos. Hang on, La nana might have been at MIFF…? I didn’t see it anyway. By all accounts Los abrazos rotos is minor Almodovar, but considering minor Almodovar is better than the best of a load of mediocre directors put together, I’d put the quiet money on him.

Best Television Series – Drama

  • Big Love
  • Dexter
  • House M. D.
  • Mad Men
  • True Blood

I know people generally have televisual fits of glee over all these shows, but apart from Dexter, eh, the rest leave me a bit cold. Especially Mad Men, what the heck is the appeal behind the surface pretty?

Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy

  • Entourage
  • Glee (Okay, so I loved the pilot of this with a mad, burning love, but have been increasing more and more disappointed as the series has progressed. Mainly because Will is clearly A MASSIVE GIANT FUCKSTICK, no one ever pulls him up on his obvious horridness, and he is supposed to be the audience’s main source of identification. Yeah, no. Let’s not even get into the completely dodgy gender politics)
  • The Office
  • Modern Family
  • 30 Rock

Either The Office or 30 Rock should win, and both would make me happy.

Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy

  • Alec Baldwin for 30 Rock (YAY!)
  • Steve Carell for The Office (EVEN MORE YAY!)
  • David Duchovny for Californication
  • Thomas Jane for Hung
  • Matthew Morrison for Glee (Is this fuckstick Will? *checks imdb* Oh my god, it is! HELLS NO)

Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Musical of Comedy

  • Toni Collette for The United States of Tara (Should win hands down. Any of the other people nominated for ANY of these awards playing upwards of six different totally convincing characters in the one piece? Yeah, didn’t think so)
  • Courteney Cox for Cougar Town (There is a show called COUGAR TOWN?! Oh dear lord, I want to die)
  • Edie Falco for Nurse Jackie
  • Tina Fey for 30 Rock (TRIPLE YAY!)
  • Lea Michele for Glee

Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-series or Motion Picture Made For Television

  • Michael Emerson for Lost
  • Neil Patrick Harris for How I Met Your Mother (SUPER YAY! Oh, he must surely win through the sheer power of his AWESOME)
  • William Hurt for Damages
  • John Lithgow for Dexter (John Lithgow is in Dexter now?! Hells, I am behind)
  • Jeremy Piven for Entourage

Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-series or Motion Picture Made For Television

  • Jane Adams for Hung
  • Rose Byrne for Damages
  • Jane Lynch for Glee (She should win 1. Because she is awesome, and 2. Because increasing Sue Sylvester has become the only voice of reason on that damn show and says what anyone with a brain watching is clearly thinking. Go Jane!)
  • Janet McTeer for Into The Storm
  • Chloe Sevigny for Big Love




Company Of Ghosts

8 12 2009

So what have I been up to in this lull of writerly activity? Mostly work, work, work, though there are a couple of things that I have occupied my mind and doings with greater frequency.

I applied for a postgraduate masters course in cinema management and have been nearly beside myself with impatience waiting for a letter to see if I’ve been accepted. Because if I don’t get in I don’t have a back up plan for what to do next year. Thus, am a tad bit panicky. I am certain now that film is what I want to pursue a career in, I have the marks for the course, but every time I went into uni during the application process I would hear, “Oh, this course is so popular with applicants this year!” So, I am fretting. Fret fret fret! I should hear from them before December 24th, wow, wouldn’t want to be my family if I don’t get in, it will be the most passive agressive Christmas ever!

But! There is excitement on the horizon, for in January I am going to Sweden! “Oh, but Hayley,” those with long memories are galumping, “You went to Europe earlier this year, what is all this?” Well, my friend Zoe is over in Stockholm stalking around Konstfack being all interior designy and fashioning stools and whatnot, and has been all “Come visit me!” for months now. And I was all “Oh, but what about money, I should save and I already travelled this year…”, chittering and as skittish as a wee mousie. Then one morning I just woke up and it was like a lion had taken up residence in my chest, a lion of determination, who roared most loudly “WHY THE FUCK NOT?” And indeed, Lion of Determination, why not. So I did. And now I am looking forward to Zoe and snow and ice skating and woolens and stuffing my face with semlor, it will be glorious. GLORIOUS I SAY!

And I was going to talk about a third thing, but I think it deserves a post of it’s own, it is about THE HIDEOUS BEHAVIOURS OF MEN WHO INEXPLICABLY ACT LIKE ARSEHOLES, look at that, that is like an essay title, heavy shit indeed, let’s finish thinking of semlor again. Hmmm, tastes Swedish.








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