"Terrible boyfriend? We can fix him. Complete tools transformed into knights in shining armor." These are the promises of the opening credits of Tool Academy, VH1's latest trash-tastic series in which women drag their truly terrible boyfriends through a relationship boot camp in hopes of turning them into nice guys. The tools agreed to come on the show thinking it was called Mr. Awesome, a competition to determine "the biggest Alpha male in America." After they learned the show's real premise, they all stayed on in hopes of proving themselves to their girlfriends...and winning $100,000 for being the best boyfriend.
If you're wondering what makes a tool a tool, it appears to be a combination of made-up names (Celebrity, M.E.G.A., Matsuflex, etc.), excessive hair gel, and behavior that's just…well, look if you dare.
(Note: The videos in this post contain ads. Blame it on VH1.)
Big news from the Sundance Film Festival this past weekend: for only the third time in the festival's 25-year history, the Sundance jury and the audience awarded their top honors to the same film. Push: Based on the Novel by Sapphire (a title designed, no doubt, to distinguish the film from the sci-fi action film of the same name starring Dakota Fanning that hits theaters later this year) won the Grand Jury Prize as well as the Audience Award. Comedienne Mo'Nique also received a Special Jury Prize for Acting for her dramatic performance in the film. Push is an adaptation of author and performance poet Sapphire's powerful story about a young African-American woman who struggles to overcome incredible obstacles, including illiteracy and a harrowing history of abuse. The film's star, newcomer Gabourey Sidibe is receiving rave reviews, as well as her co-stars Mo'Nique, Paula Patton, Mariah Carey, and Lenny Kravitz. Unfortunately, all of this momentum may not translate into a chance at the box office.
If you are at all a frequent user of Facebook, you have probably seen a number of your friends "donate their status to ____" or join "One Million Strong Against ______." Heck, if you are one of my Facebook friends, I probably invited you to join my pro-Katie Couric group. While there are obvious networking benefits for activists using Facebook, has the website taken the bite out of civil disobedience?
As a big horror fan, I've been excited to see what My Bloody Valentine 3D would do for the genre, which trades primarily on thrills and spectacle. But even if I wasn't into horror, the film would be worth taking note of because it's one of the first contemporary films shot in 3D that is not a family picture (and not animated, at that). The film's success will no doubt be a benchmark for studios considering shooting other films in 3D. So I'm disappointed to report that, while the film is something of a technological marvel, its (mis)treatment of its female characters is nothing to be excited about.
The "Mexico City Policy" was instituted by Reagan, reversed under Clinton, and re-instated by George W. Hopefully Obama's decision won't be just another flip of the coin, especially since this policy has sweeping consequences for health care around the world.
Extensions off to Jaime Pressly, one of the funniest women on TV. Her Emmy award-winning portrayal of Joy Turner on My Name Is Earl is so solid that it's easy to forget she's a bonafide sexpot (with credits like Playboy spreads, countless "sexiest women" list mentions, and the lead in Poison Ivy: The New Seduction on her resume). Of course, Pressly's hotness isn't anything out of the ordinary: she has blonde hair, blue eyes, big boobs and a button nose. Yawn, right? But it's Pressly's self-awareness that allows her to take her conventional looks to cartoonish heights as Joy. And therein lies the comic genius.