September 02, 2010 11:19am EST
When the animated opening credits of Warner Bros. Going the Distance begin a barrage of colorful images envelope the screen shaking and shifting to the sounds of contemporary pop-rock like a hipster-chick in a SoHo lounge. It sets the tone for a lighthearted but levelheaded romantic comedy that like the music is cool and crafty but not completely above the clichés of the tried-and-true genre.
Making her feature-film directorial debut Oscar-nominated documentarian Nanette Burstein (On the Ropes) set out to make a film that as she put it “would feel as real as possible” – a tough job when taking on a studio comedy. But with a relatable premise a punchy script and a cast that possesses a ton of personality she succeeds at delivering a surprisingly fresh film that chronicles the pros and cons of a long-distance relationship between Justin Long’s Garrett and Drew Barrymore’s Erin.
The first half hour is filled with the standard situational set-ups and character introductions that one expects from any film. We learn everything we need (and want) to know about Garrett and Erin: He’s a New York record label workhorse and she’s an aspiring journalist interning at a metropolitan newspaper. They frequent the same dive bar in downtown Manhattan and have a beer and barbeque-wings fueled fling which turns into a steady summer-long relationship. But all good things must come to an end and as September approaches she prepares to head back to Stanford for another semester much to their mutual dismay. However the feelings between them are sincere and they decide to give their spatially challenged relationship a shot.
Real-life couple Long and Barrymore have a few touching moments throughout the film mostly when the trials of their long-distance relationship take a toll but they are a bore in comparison to the supporting cast. Jason Sudeikis and Charlie Day bring frat-house etiquette and bro-mantic charm to the movie as Garrett’s best friends Box and Dan. Together they are the living embodiment of testosterone and man-child — archetypes that have become all-too common in current rom-coms — but with legitimately funny performances they really pay off. Christina Applegate is good for a load of laughs as Erin’s older sister Corinne who is skeptical of Erin’s eagerness to engage in yet another risky romance; she steals the show with her unrelenting commentary.
Going the Distance doesn’t break new ground within the genre or redefine cinematic romance but it balances the sweet and sour moments of its story very well. Burstein minimizes the drama and keeps the comedy raw to maximize the entertainment value of the movie which should please all who purchase a ticket. Somehow the long distance dilemma hasn’t been tackled on film before and that makes the movie appear to be more original that it really is but in a year where so few romantic comedies have brought the goods (The Back-Up Plan Sex and the City 2) Going the Distance does just that.
September 02, 2010 10:30am EST
The reality TV star has slimmed down to a tiny U.S. size two since her stint on TV competition Dancing with the Stars - and celebrity choreographer Antin took notice of her newfound confidence.
Antin took to Twitter.com to post a sexy picture of the reality star as she arrived in a silver sequined micro mini dress ahead of the show at the Viper Room in Los Angeles on Wednesday - where she joined PCD Revue regular guest Carmen Electra for a sexy strip.
And her raunchy show looks like it may be headed to the big screen for the world to see - recent reports suggest the event was filmed for Donovan Leitch's new documentary Sunset Strip.
The Switch is being touted for its on-screen pairing of “longtime friends” Jason Bateman and Jennifer Aniston. Which is odd because I found their scenes together in Josh Gordon and Will Speck’s romantic comedy about a 40-year-old single woman who sires a son artificialy with sperm that unbeknownst to her came from the loins her best friend to be its weakest aspect. Bateman whose improvisational wit is widely heralded appears tentative and deferential in the presence of Aniston as if he’s wary of going all-out for fear of eclipsing his co-star who also happens to be an executive producer on the film.
Their strained comic rapport makes for a flat and largely unfunny first act in which it is explained how Wally (Bateman) a cranky neurotic investment banker inadvertently impregnates his baby-mad best friend Kassie (Aniston). The whole contrived episode culminates during an “insemination party ” a peculiar New York City cougar ritual presided over by Kassie’s new-age pal Debbie (Juliette Lewis) wherein Wally drunkenly substitutes his semen for that of the Nordic Adonis (Patrick Wilson) originally designated for the job.
But just when The Switch’s foreboding intro has us steeling ourselves for 90 more minutes of high-concept rom-com pabulum the film pull a dirty trick: Its story fast-forwards seven years during which Kassie returns to her native Minnesota gives birth to a son named Sebastian and is lured back to present-day New York six-year-old Sebastian (Thomas Robinson) in tow by an irresistible job offer. It’s a shamelessly manipulative ploy bringing in the adorable pint-sized ringer off the bench but it turns out to be a welcome one breathing much-needed life into The Switch’s moribund proceedings.
Sebastian is truly a miniature version of his father whom he knows only as “Uncle” Wally with all of his intelligence and neuroses but none of the weary cynicism that adulthood inevitably breeds in such types. Bateman is clearly more comfortable — and a lot funnier — around Robinson and The Switch’s most memorable moments are found in the bond they develop.
But alas The Switch is a rom-com and so space must be allotted for the less appealing “rom” portion of its story. Kassie spends the bulk of the film believing that the Nordic Adonis is Sebastian’s true father despite the fact that he bears no resemblance to him whatsoever and when Wally finally confesses to his sperm-swapping she goes predictably ballistic renouncing him entirely. But the two are destined to be together so we are told and their estrangement is a brief one — lasting only a somber montage or two. When they’re inevitably united (if you consider this a spoiler you are beyond hope) we’re happy about it if only because no child should be forced to grow up with Jennifer Aniston as a single mother.
It’s so hot in L.A. that even the superstars are melting! Everyone’s off to the beach and the pool, and looking cool while staying cool is the number one priority for most celebs. Some, however, are more successful at it than others. Classic string bikinis, vintage playsuits, pastels, brights, geometric shapes, florals, sarongs, gladiator sandals, and aviator glasses are as prolific this season as sunblock. Just make sure not to wear every trend at once!
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Kate Durbin is a Los Angeles-based writer, performer, and fashion artist. She is the author of The Ravenous Audience (Black Goat/Akashic, 2009), Fragments Found in a 1937 Aviator’s Boot (Dancing Girl Press, 2009), and Kept Women (Insert Press, forthcoming). She is founding editor of the project Gaga Stigmata: Critical Writings and Art About Lady Gaga, which has been featured by Salon.com and The Huffington Post, among others. Her fashion essay, .
The model/actress went under the knife a decade ago to boost her assets, but now feels the operation wasn't really necessary.
She says, "I had breast surgery over ten years ago, taking me from a 32B to DD, which took a bit of time to get used to. I didn't want to go as big as that. It's nice that I don't have to wear a push-up bra any more, but I could have left myself alone."
Capalbo passed away in New York City on Sunday (14Mar10), at the age of 84.
His revival of The Threepenny Opera in the 1950s became one of the biggest hits in Off-Broadway history, with supporting actress Lotte Lenya winning a Tony Award for her role in the musical.
He also directed the premiere of Eugene O'Neill's Moon for the Misbegotten on Broadway in 1957, and the premieres of The Potting Shed and The Cave Dwellers.
He is survived by a son, Marco, a daughter, Carla, and a sister, Jenny.
"We're happy the way things are. We’re not really putting that added, extra pressure on the relationship." Model/actress CARMEN ELECTRA has yet to start making wedding plans, almost two years after accepting KORN rocker ROB PATTERSON's proposal.
"I am such a home and family girl. I'm not so much the party girl these days. This year I'm spending Christmas with Rob. We are going to Aspen to spend the day by a log fire and toast to our future lives together." CARMEN ELECTRA is spending the holidays with her fiance rocker, Rob Patterson.
The actress will launch her restaurant Beso and then join Carmen Electra to co-host Billboard's New Year's Eve Live special, which will air on U.S. TV.
American Idol stars Kris Allen and Allison Iraheta will join Sean Kingston among the performers at the end-of-year party, which will be broadcast from Las Vegas and Times Square in New York.