Monday, February 27, 2012

Celebrity Apprentice: Week 2 - Gettin' Medieval!

The very metrosexual Arsenio Hall
I don't really want to recap the episode. It takes to long and frankly there are other sites that do it better. However, I do want to leave you with some of my impressions. So let's cut to the chase. 

The task involved creating a show for Medieval Times. Unanimous (the men’s team) chose Penn Teller as the project manager. The ladies of team Forte selected Lisa Lampanelli as their project manager. The guys won. Yet last night’s episode left me with a lot of questions.

1.      Was Arsenio Hall wearing lipstick? (I swear this bothered me for the entire time the men were in the boardroom)
2.      How did James Lipton of Inside the Actors Studio get picked to judge this task?
3.      Is it me or did Dee Snider make a halfway decent looking woman?
4.      If George Takei is an actor, how come he can’t memorize a couple of lines?
5.      Why did Lisa Lampanelli act like she was teaching kindergarteners (only one person is allowed to speak at a time? Really?)
6.      Why didn’t Penn call Teller? I would have liked to see him in this task.
7.      What did the motorcycle have to do with Medieval Times? It didn’t look that medieval to me.
8.      Exactly how much work has Debbie Gibson had? Aren’t we around the same age?
9.      Is it possible for Aubrey O-Day not to have that shocked somebody-just-ran-up-behind-me-and-shouted-boo look?
10.  Why the hell do I find this show so damn entertaining????

Monday, February 20, 2012

It's Baack

It's back! Let the train-wrecking begin!
The trainwreck known as Celebrity Apprentice is back ... and I couldn't be happier. Last night, kicked off in its usual style with the men versus the women. The women named their team Forte (because it means strength) and selected former model Patricia Velasquez as their first team manager. The men, known as Unanimous (because they all get along ... for now) selected American Chopper's Paul Teutul Sr with his impressively scary handlebar mustache as their first project manager.

The task, you ask? To take over a Cafe Metro, make some sandwiches and make as much money as possible. Since with celebrities, it's all about bringing in the big donors, everyone took to the phones to line up the money makers. Well, at least that's what the ladies did (with the exception of Victoria Gotti who was making a bunch of personal calls). Over at Team Unanimous, Paul said he could easily bring in half a million dollars and the guys pretty much counted on him to do that.

So, while the women were making calls, the men focused on making the sandwiches, all called Choppers after Paul's show (turkey choppers, roast beef choppers ... ). The women decide to create a VIP exeprience complete with the red carpet and velvet rope.

It looks as if the women have the edge they have donors like Wyclef and Russell Simmons dropping by and the guys have a lot of activity outside the event with Penn Teller juggling fire, a bunch of choppers outside and a lot of commotion but not a lot of people going inside.

Then The Donald calls and sends team reps over to The Rachael Ray Show to taste test the sandwiches and donate $35,000 to the tastiest one.

In the boardroom, we find that she enjoyed Unanimous's sandwich best, putting them over the top. The guys win it. Back in the boardroom, it ends up with Patricia, Cheryl Tiegs and Victoria Gotti (who had showed up late to the event because of an eye problem).

Cheryl actually backed out saying she didn't think the show was for her. Well, judging by the deer-in-the-headlights look she had during most of the episode, she was right. Hell, the woman couldn't put slices of cheese on a plate!

Other high/low lights:
  • Maybe its because I'm 43 and I couldn't give a rat's ass about P. Diddy/Puffy/Sean Combs or anything that's been on MTV in the past 20 years, but I didn't know who Aubrey O'Day was. Apparently, she is the former lead singer of Diddy's group Dannity Kane. Well, little Miss O'Day has a very big opinion of herself, time will tell if she can back it up but as for now, I doubt it. She has bright red hair and big vacant eyes. She kind of scares me.
  • Speaking of scary, I just got a new big HD television and it showed all of these women in gory detail - pores, wrinkles, everything! When the women were in the boardroom, I didn't know if I was watching Celebrity Apprentice or The Walking Dead. Thank goodness, I didn't have this TV when Joan Rivers was on!
  • Clay Aiken is a bitch and I can tell he's going to be a diva already.
  • Commedianne Lisa Lampanelli introduced herself as "the only black woman" in the competition. Sorry, girlfriend, you can s**k and f**k as many black men as you want and it will never make you a black woman. NEVER.

Movie Review: This Means War

 I have to admit, ever since I saw Inception, I've had a bit of a thing for Tom Hardy. My friend KJ has a bit of a thing for Chris Pine, so it was a foregone conclusion that we'd see This Means War together. Our verdict? This is the perfect date movie with its mix of romance (and eye candy) and action.

FDR (Chris Pine) and Tuck (Tom Hardy) are best friends and dangerous CIA operatives. Tuck is the recently divorced father who is just tipping his toes back into the dating pool. FDR is a playboy who dives into that same dating pool with gusto. Tuck puts his profile on a dating site and ends up with Lauren, a consumer products tester who needs to jumpstart her dating life.

FDR plans to be at a nearby video rental store when Tuck and Lauren meet for coffee, just in case his BFF needs to get out of his date. Fortunately, he doesn't need to. However, when Lauren stops by the same video store, she meets FDR. Once the two realize they are after the same girl, their gentlemen's agreement to let the best man win (while maintaining their friendship) quickly falls by the wayside.

While they should be looking for an assassin, they spend most of their time using their formidible CIA resources to bug Lauren's home, instal GPS units in her car and phone, with the expressed goal of using all of this intel to get the girl.

We really enjoyed this movie, it had a great mix of romance and some serious action. As a rom-com, no one expects a lot of plot twist and I pretty much knew who'd end up with the girl about 10 minutes in but it was a fun ride and that is all anyone really wants from a movie like this anyway.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Safe House is a Safe Bet

If it’s action you’re jonsing for, Safe House is a safe bet. The Denzel Washington-Ryan Reynolds’ thriller is worth your time. In fact, I saw an early morning showing with my friend KJ. As we left, she said, she would have paid full price for Safe House (and that’s saying something).

Matt Weston (Ryan Reynolds) is a CIA recruit who’s assigned to watch a ‘safe house’ in Capetown, South Africa. The safe house is a place CIA operatives would bring suspects in custody that were in the area. The only problem is there are no suspects in the area, so Matt fills his days bouncing balls against the wall and twiddling his thumbs. Of course, that is about to change.

Tobin Frost (Denzel Washington) a former brilliant CIA operative has spent the last decade as a wanted man and traitor, selling secrets to anyone with the cash to pay for them. Only the CIA isn’t the only group after Tobin. A group of mysterious renegades is after him as well. After an edge-of-your-seat chase, Tobin ends up in front of the US embassy. He decides to take his chances and turns himself in. And, all of the sudden, Weston has his first safe house guest. … And what a guest he is.

It’s hard to believe that this is the same Ryan Reynolds that starred in National Lampoon’s Van Wilder. He held his own with Denzel who, of course, made a very good bad guy. With this group of thugs and the CIA on his tail, Weston more than proves that he’s ready to be moved out of the safe house.

Car chases, shoot-outs ,changing allegiances, Safe House had it all. The subplot with Weston and his girlfriend (Nora Arnezeder) was thankfully short. With a movie like this, a lull in the action, really is a lull. Safe House is best when it’s behind the wheel or wielding a gun. Fortunately, that is most of the movie.

I also liked the change of scenery that the South African backdrop provided. Europe has been done to death, and the Middle East is getting there. Capetown came alive on film and served the movie well.

I knew who the real bad guy would turn out to be from the first scene, but that didn’t detract from my enjoyment of this movie. I highly recommend Safe House.

Whitney Houston ... RIP

Whitney will be missed.
I was enjoying a Girls Night Out when a guy came over and asked if we were Whitney Houston fans. Of course we were, we all agreed. We were expecting some sort of pick-up line next when he told us that it had just been announced that Whitney had passed. She was 48 years old.

I was shocked but not surprised. Whitney's struggles with addiction have been well documented. Although the cause of her death has not be determined, it isn't illogical to assume that her battles with drugs may have finally taken their toll.

A victim of reality-TV, it's sad that she'll be remembered just as much for her infamous reality show and her inadvertent catch phrase, "Crack is whack!" as she will be for her amazing voice, beauty and string of hits. Like Michael Jackson, I have memories that coincide with Whitney Houston classics. Heck, I had just moved to Phoenix when Waiting to Exhale came out.

Over the past few years, we held our collective breath and hoped she could make a comeback, but her voice just wasn't the same. It is fitting that she passed on the eve of the Grammy Awards, on her way to a party thrown by her mentor Clive Davis. Whitney was nominated for 26 Grammys and won six. She also could boast of 22 American Music Awards, 30 Billboard Awards, six People's Choice Awards, 16 NAACP Image Awards and 7 Soul Train Awards.

With just over 24 hours to prepare, tonight's Grammy Awards will feature a tribute to Whitney doing what she did best - singing.

Rest in peace, Whitney.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

What's Missing

Steven Tyler isn't that funny.
Bring back the bad auditions!
I'm about to watch tonight's episode of American Idol. While ratings have fallen off a bit, it's still the #1 show in it's time slot and it still rakes in some killer numbers. Yet something is missing ... and no, for me, it isn't Simon Cowell and it certainly isn't Paula Abdul. For the audition shows, what is missing for me is humor. What is missing is the fun.
In past seasons, I've looked forward to Idol audition shows for the mixture of auditions ... for the highs and the lows. Part of the fun of the audition shows is watching the bad auditions, just like part of the fun of Hollywood Week is watching the drama and group implosions.

This season has been light on bad auditions and very heavy on sob story packages for the contestants that made it through. The packages are part of the auditions that I hate the most and it seems like we've had them in droves. I mean the girl that lived in the tent, the boy who was born without ears. Really???

Stop trying to tug at my hard strings and bring back the bad singers!