With Christmas just around the bend, shopping has pretty much reached its peak. But not everyone deserves to find what they want in their stockings -- especially some of our favorite celebrities. And since it’s basically our job to monitor celebrity behavior throughout the course of the year, I feel like it's our responsibility to help Santa out and decide which stars should be on the naughty list and which should be on the nice one. Check out our list below and find out how stars measured up under our holiday scrutiny.
Ryan Gosling: Nice
Ryan Gosling: popular actor, adorable dog owner, and local hero. On August 22nd, Gosling witnessed a fight on the streets of New York City, but instead of turning his back and walking away from the situation he intervened and broke the fight up. It was a small and simple gesture, but it told a lot about the guy’s character and how he doesn’t turn a blind eye when it comes to violence. The citizens of New York can feel safe under this celeb’s helpful watch and since he’s gone above and beyond the call of duty, Mr. Gosling is guaranteed a spot at the top of the nice list.
Shia LaBeouf: Naughty
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However, other stars feel it’s their responsibility to initiate the street fights (someone’s got to keep Ryan Gosling busy, right?). On October 18th, a witness recorded Shia LaBeouf getting his ass kicked on the streets of Vancouver just outside a local bar. It’s unclear as to what initially caused the fight, but since booze and violence seem to always go hand-in-hand, I’m going to take a page out of Jamie Fox’s book and Blame It on the a-a-a-a-alcohol. (Sorry, I couldn’t help myself). If you watch the video, it’s really just sad to see one of Hollywood’s stars – a prominent figure in the entertainment industry – get into a bar brawl. Couple that with the fact that LaBeouf is kinda known for his short temper and all signs indicate he deserves a one way ticket to the naughty list. (Source: TMZ)
Nicki Minaj: Nice
It’s always nice when a celebrity demonstrates an act of kindness, but when it involves making two little girls’ dreams come true, it’s simply phenomenal. Sophia Grace and Rosie skyrocketed to stardom after appearing on The Ellen Show on October 12th to perform a Nicki Minaj song in front of a live audience, and they did a superb job. But the highlight of the show was when Nicki Minaj made a surprise visit so she could sing with the two girls. As you can guess, Sophia Grace and Rosie were beyond excited to see their favorite star and their reactions to her were simply amazing. I mean, the fact that the singer changed her entire schedule around just so she could stop in and see the girls, really shows what a kind-hearted and caring person she really is, at least when it comes to children. The amount of joy she brought to the both of them is more than enough to earn her a spot on the nice list.
On September 4th, someone gave Madonna a bouquet of hydrangeas a few months back, but instead of just politely accepting them and leaving it at that, she immediately handed them off to another person while muttering, “I absolutely loathe hydrangeas. Obviously he didn’t know that.” It was shocking to watch her be so inexplicably rude to someone who was trying to be nice to her. Granted, she probably wasn’t aware a strategically placed camera crew caught her offensive remark on tape, but it still doesn’t account for how she handled the situation. And unfortunately for her, I absolutely loathe rude people. Obviously she didn’t know that. So off to the naughty list she goes.
Jim Carrey: Nice
All Jim Carrey fans simultaneously shook their heads in disbelief on August 24th when the actor confessed his undying love for Emma Stone in a homemade video earlier this year. While it could be seen as creepy (okay, really creepy), Carrey's praise for Stone was endearing. Of course this little clip wasn’t exactly up to par with his normal comedic antics, but at least he’s got good taste, because who doesn’t love Emma Stone? So, pathetic and a little desperate: yes. Malicious and deserving of a place on the naughty list: no.
We all know Snooki is no stranger to partying. In fact, her nightly escapades usually make for some pretty amusing entertainment. But Snooki took the term “tree hugging” to a whole new (and wrong) level on July 7th when she decided to grind up on a poor, helpless tree while in a drunken haze. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about helping out the environment, but this was terrible – that tree didn’t do anything to her besides maybe beat her in the height contest. But it’s not just about the tree…Snooki is always caught dancing on bars, partying too hard, inviting guys to the smush room, and generally just making poor life choices, so I’m going to have to put her on the naughty list for at least another year. (Source: TMZ)
Anderson Cooper: Nice
Everyone loves a good pee joke, especially Anderson Cooper, who burst into a fit of uncontrollable giggles on August 17th while discussing Gerard Depardieu's decision to urinate on a plane (and not in the bathroom) on a segment of The RidicuList. But this wasn’t just your average giggle fest – this was a "crying your eyes out, squealing like a little girl" type of situation, which can only be classified as utterly amazing. Honestly though, try watching this video without bursting into laughter – it’s impossible. Thank you Anderson Cooper for bringing so much joy into our daily lives.
Charlie Sheen: Naughty
In one year, Charlie Sheen – who was basically the crème de la crème in TV circles – got fired from his long-running sitcom, publicly suffered a mental breakdown, finalized yet another divorce, lost both his goddesses, and basically became certifiably insane. Now before you start hating on me I’ll give him some credit: he seems to be trying to turn his life back around these days, but that doesn’t excuse the complete lunacy he demonstrated in previous months. We all remember (and mock) his chaotic March 1st interview with 20/20, where he coined legendary phrases such as “tigerblood,” “Adonis DNA,” and his most popular gimmick, “winnnning!” He made a laughing stock out of himself, which seriously set him back amongst his Hollywood peers, which cannot go unnoticed. That’s not even mentioning his previous endeavors from other years where he threatened a porn star and destroyed a New York hotel room. I’m just sticking to the discrepancies that happened in the span of 12 months and the list is still quite long. As entertaining as all his antics may be, he still belongs on the naughty list.
Throughout history, there have been many films that have changed lives, and perhaps the world, but no movie has had as pronounced effect on planet Earth as Justin Bieber: Never Say Never. The film even turned former Justin Bieber snarkers into diehard fans—one example being The Ides of March's Evan Rachel Wood.
The actress visited Jimmy Fallon on Late Night last night to discuss her role in the upcoming George Clooney and Ryan Gosling film. However, some more pressing matters came up: her love of the Biebs. ERW's adoration for the pop sensation was no secret: earlier this year, a video of her singing "Baby" leaked online. Last night, she gave a more formal performance.
Backed up by The Roots, Wood offered a pretty stellar, and passionate, rendition of Bieber's "Baby," which you can watch below. Enjoy! But be warned: this video might turn you just like Never Say Never turned her.
WHAT IT’S ABOUT?
Adapted by Bret Easton Ellis (Less Than Zero The Rules of Attraction American Psycho) from his own 1994 novel about the excesses of the rich and not-so-lucky in Hollywood circa 1983 this shallow film seems out of touch now in a time of economic turmoil — even if it is disguised as a period piece. Presented as a multi-story look at L.A. at its sordid best The Informers introduces us to a sleazy movie executive his estranged wife her poolboy lover a coked-out British punk rock star a fading newscaster a voyeuristic doorman a slimy ex-con and any number of beautiful vapid sexed-up twentysomethings who seem to spend their days either partying or snorting immune to any kind of social consciousness in an era marked by the dawn of the AIDS epidemic.
WHO’S IN IT?
The ensemble cast is split between older stars who’ve seen better days and a promising group of new talent unfortunately caught up in this mess. Billy Bob Thornton sleepwalks through the studio exec role while a pre-Wrestler Mickey Rourke (in a glorified cameo) shows us the kind of dreck he’s been stuck in the last few years as a tough ex-con who seems obsessed with someone called “the Indian.” Kim Basinger survives intact as a long-suffering Hollywood wife looking for a human connection from anyone who crosses her path while Winona Ryder projects just a shadow of her once-promising career as the aging newscaster. The late Brad Renfro who himself apparently fell victim to a drug-induced lifestyle is oddly touching as the peeping-tom doorman. Filling in the lost youth part of the equation are Jon Foster Amber Heard Austin Nichols Lou Taylor Pucci and amusing British star Mel Raido who do the best they can with their clothes on and off. Chris Isaak and Rhys Ifans also turn up in minor roles.
For what it’s worth The Informers has been handsomely shot and does capture emotional deadness well but unfortunately there’s nothing behind the façade of a group of characters we just don’t care about.
Ellis covered this all in Less Than Zero — same era same losers — so did we really need a LESS THAN Less Than Zero in 2009? It’s also a shame to see a fine group of actors so completely wasted both on screen and off.
BEST STONED-OUT LOSER SCENE:
The tenor of the whole film is summed up in the ice cube-filled bathtub sequence where a drunken almost catatonic British rocker proceeds to nearly kill himself trying to light a cigarette and answer a phone that NEVER stops ringing.
NETFLIX OR MULTIPLEX:
This movie may already be available on DVD before you finish reading this review.
When infamous outlaw Ben Wade (Russell Crowe) gets captured in late 19th century Arizona the plan is to transport him to a train en route to Yuma prison(leaving at 3:10 of course). But in the 1800s bringing someone to justice is as arduous as it sounds especially since horses are the only mode of transportation and their carriages the only place to house a prisoner. Across “town ” rancher Dan Evans (Christian Bale) is struggling mightily to support his wife (Gretchen Mol) and kids (Logan Lerman and Benjamin Petry) following a drought and needs to build a well for his family. So when he receives a nominal financial offer to help transport the notorious felon he jumps at it dutifully and desperately. While on the trail that leads to the train station no amount of physical or verbal threat is too much for Wade to break free of with ease. But when it comes to the law-abiding rancher for whom Wade has a certain respect his escape becomes much more complicated than getting out of handcuffs. 3:10 to Yuma’s pairing of Batman and Cinderella Man is perfect in concept and execution and watching the two stars is more than a sight to behold—it is transfixing like watching any two longtime professionals make something difficult look easy. It’s the first of two such powerhouse pairings for Crowe this fall—he co-stars with Denzel Washington in November’s American Gangster—and if this small sample size is any indication big-name costars bring out the best in him. Crowe evokes the kind of real humanistic villain that could only exist in a Western and by playing Wade with equal parts amiability and evil the Oscar winner turns in what is probably his most purely charismatic performance to date. Bale’s character on the other hand—and per usual—is loath to crack a smile a quality the actor has mastered. The Yoda of dialect Welsh-born Bale also has no difficulty switching over to Ol’ West speak but it’s the way he conveys the rancher’s stoicism and will that makes him even more credible. Among the supporting turns Ben Foster (Alpha Dog) stands out as a cranked-up trigger-happy member of Wade’s gang and stalwart Peter Fonda is perfectly cast as a tough ‘n’ gruff bounty hunter. When director James Mangold turned Johnny Cash’s life story into Walk the Line it was the romantic version of a much darker tale. For 3:10 to Yuma a remake of the beloved 1957 Glenn Ford-starrer Mangold gives the Western the same treatment. In attempting to reel in today’s action-happy audience Mangold waters down the drama and speeds up the pace. Minor tweaks for this modern update equal a bit of a departure from true Western style with the dialogue for example as snappy as one of today’s action comedies. But it’s all in good fun. The Old West looks completely authentic and the unforgettable ending is perhaps made possible by the director’s innocuous first two acts. Even so his efforts and those of the screenwriters (Derek Haas Michael Brandt and Halstead Wells who wrote the original) aren’t enough to perform CPR on the Western—not that it’s fair to rest the fate of entire dying genre in their hands.
When Professor Utonium (voiced by Tom Kane) creates Bubbles (voiced by Tara Strong) Blossom (voiced by Cathy Cavadini) and Buttercup (voiced by E. G. Daily) he's as excited and proud as any new parent. Then they start to fly around the room. From there we're treated to several scenes of "growing up Powerpuff " from their first peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (crusts cut off using infrared vision) to their first day at the Pokey Oats School (they learn to play tag and destroy the town doing it). When the townspeople see the destruction the girls have wrought they imprison the professor print nasty newspaper headlines ("Freaky Bug-Eyed Weirdo Girls Broke Everything") and vow to get those pesky kids. Disillusioned and depressed the outcast girls find solace and sympathy in an alley with a hobo named Jojo (voiced by Roger L. Jackson) who assures them in no uncertain terms that he is in the same boat. "Alas little ones " he says "I do not rock." But Jojo does have a plan: With a little help from the girls he'll build a machine that will make everything better--and the townspeople will like them again. In a life lesson on why you shouldn't talk to strangers the girls believe him and so they end up using their powers to help him achieve what is actually a diabolical goal--to take over Townsville using an army of mutant simians. Once the girls realize the error of their ways they battle Jojo (who's now calling himself "Mojo Jojo") and his army of monkeys attempting to save the world before bedtime--and to earn the trust of the townspeople.
The squeaky-clean voices of actors playing the Powerpuff Girls seem perfectly suited to the bug-eyed fin-fingered creatures; they're somehow innocent and experienced at the same time especially Daily's Buttercup. Strong's Bubbles certainly does bubble and Cavadini's Blossom imparts the steely resolve that makes her the leader of the pack. For comic punch though the monkeys really steal the show--Jackson's Jojo is supreme evil animated and he lets you know it. Kane's ability to perfectly capture the tone of a 1950s elementary school documentary voiceover should not go unnoticed either.
When Professor Utonium set out to create some little girls he didn't mean for them to have super powers. It just kind of happened when a little "Chemical X" got thrown into the mix. The same could be said of director/screenwriter Craig McCracken's final product: It's not a great film--even by kids' film standards--especially compared to the original TV show. It's slow in key places (the game of tag is interminable and the monkey battles go on and on) and kids will probably lose interest quickly as a result. But there are a few "X" factors that make it interesting for both kids and grownups as long as they can be persuaded to keep watching. First monkey jokes. The monkey army that Mojo Jojo attempts to lead is full of sneaky tricks for obliterating the town and wresting control from Jojo including baboon butt bombs the "sauce of chaos" and a barrel that rolls over things in the street including people and a dog that looks suspiciously like Snoopy. Second Planet of the Apes references. Buttercup rails at one of the chimps to "get your hands off him you darn dirty ape!" Third a mayor with an obsession for large green pickles sold from a cart: he's bizarre and slightly disturbing but nonetheless entertaining.