The Slap

I swore I wouldn’t do this.  I said to myself, “Self, don’t you dare!  Walk away!  Just walk away!  It’ll be over soon, and nobody will care!”  But in the end, it was just too delicious to resist, too off-the-wall funny, too hilariously 21st century to pass up.  So here are a few thoughts on The Slap.  (Notice, at a time when Hong Kong politics, Sri Lanka protests and the French election need a few words of explanation, everybody knows what I’m talking about.  Sad but true!)  Anyway:

1 – Since the Oscar altercation, both Oprah and Ellen have offered Will Smith big money – Oprah for an exclusive tell-all interview and Ellen to help with her staffing problems.

2 – I’m pretty sure that if the Rock had been onstage — instead of Chris Rock — none of this would have happened.

3 – Likewise, Wanda Sykes wouldn’t have gone as quietly as Chris Rock did.  Lay a smack on her, and she’d have let loose with a haymaker and put the boots to Smith on the way down.

4 – Plus, co-host Amy Schumer, who was making jokes about it 5 minutes after Smith went all “hands on,” confessed that the next day she felt “physically sick” over the whole event.  Amy, that’s a hangover!

5 – And “physically sick” seems to be the celebrity go-to reaction — although most of them aren’t too sick to get out of their hospital beds, get on a talk show and tell the world how “physically sick” they feel.  Oh, and get a few belated kicks into an A-lister while they’re at it.

6 – And remember these are the same people who clapped and cheered when Smith walked up on stage – the second time – to collect his Oscar, listened attentively while the recent felon gave a thank you speech and clapped and cheered some more when he was done. (Damn that subsequent integrity!)

7 – Meanwhile, B, C and D list celebrities, who were at home eating pizza the night of the Oscars, are suddenly calling Chris Rock, “Chris” and speculating on what drove “Will” to that level of unacceptable mayhem.

So, what have we learned?

1 – A celebrity assault can knock Climate Change, a Pandemic and a War off the front page — which proves, beyond debate, that we’re living in an intellectual, cultural and spiritual Brave New World, and the Betas are definitely in control.

2 – In an age when every celebrity on the planet is lip-syncing gender equality, it would have been a lot more fun if Jada Pinkett Smith had done her own slapping.  Who’s the bad guy now, Twittersphere?

The Oscars Are Old!


This year, the Oscars have snuck up on me because – uh – well — for the first time in living memory, I don’t really care. This isn’t a sudden revelation: it’s been building for a few years.  Oscar and I are just not that into each other anymore.  It’s sad to lose a lifetime lover, but we’ve grown apart, Oscar and I, and I’m probably going to spend the evening playing with my new friends on Netflix.  So what happened?  Oscar got old.

I’ll grant you I’m no spring chicken, myself.  I can clearly remember the night Oliver, a piece of junk musical, beat The Lion in Winter, for Best Picture – what a shock!  But that’s what Oscar used to be – wild and unpredictable.  It was magic.  It was fun, and everybody wanted to know who won.  These days, despite its chiseled abs and perky breasts, Oscar is old enough to be my grandfather and acts the part.

Let’s face it: the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have become a bunch of dithering old people, worried about what the neighbours will think.  Look at all the dicking around over Kevin Hart.  Why does this remind me of Shady Acres Care Facility?
“Okay, fine!  If Mrs. Crabtree can’t run the rummage sale, then I guess we just won’t have a host this year.  Satisfied?”
Plus, there’s the on-again/off-again Popular Picture Award and the bickering over which awards do or do not deserve television time.  God, folks!  Get over yourselves!  Nobody cares!  Ordinary people tune in to Oscar night for the Big Six and wade through the rest because of the dresses.  Here’s a newsflash: there’s only one person who remembers who won the Oscar for Best Animated Short Film in 2010 and that’s Nicolas Schmerkin – the guy who won.

The problem is, like old people everywhere, the Academy just doesn’t realize it’s old.  It’s still thinks it’s Ava Gardner-glamourous with oysters and champagne, but what the rest of the world sees is Meryl Streep, drinking low-fat Chablis and blathering on about the intestinal benefits of ancient grains.  The Oscars are too earnest, too political, too aware, and too damn grouchy to be magic anymore.  They’re not fun.  They’re scolding.

So I’m going to give them a miss for all those reasons and mostly because — ever since The Hurt Locker — Oscar has become totally predictable.

Good luck, Black Panther – you haven’t got a chance!

Fun Stuff For The Oscars


I’m going to watch the Oscars again on Sunday — even though I’ve been mad at them for over twenty years.  (Braveheart? The English Patient? Titanic?  Give me a break!)  I watch every year ’cause I love movies and — like it or don’t — Oscar is the Big Kahuna!  However, I think the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is packed with a bunch of pompous asses.  And while I don’t mind if a crowd of obscenely rich people want to prance around, congratulating each other on how awesome they are, I do object to them telling us ordinary folk how to save the world.  Quite frankly, Hollywood people live so high up in their Tinsel Tower they can’t see the common people for the cloud cover.

This year’s Cause Celebre is women, so the Red Carpet won’t have as much colour and cleavage as we’re used to, but at the end of the day, remember — it’s still about the movies.  So, to enhance your experience, here are a few fun facts about this year’s Oscars.

I’m no Nostradamus, but I think it’s a safe bet to predict a) President Trump will get a whippin’; b) the same people who were applauding Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey a couple of years ago will be pushing each other out of the way to get a kick in (BTW, Louis CK will not be mentioned); and c) one of the Grande Dames — might be Meryl/might be Oprah — will give an impassioned speech about change.

This year’s host is Jimmy Kimmel (for the second time.)  This is a guy who made his bones on The Man Show which featured, among other things, Topless In America, Girls on Trampolines and The Juggy Dance Squad.  Somehow, I don’t think that kind of obsession with breasts really catches the zeitgeist of contemporary Hollywood.  (Just sayin’.)

And as an extra added attraction, it will be interesting to see if Kimmel continues his mischievous faux feud with Matt Damon, who, as far as I know, is still persona non grata this award season.  (Don’t worry, Matt! Even Mel Gibson got rehabilitated.)

Despite the long tradition, Casey Affleck has chickened out and will not present the Oscar to this year’s Best Actress.  Personally, I think it’s because none of the nominees wanted to get that close to the guy.  His brother Ben (two-time Oscar winner) probably won’t be there either considering he got caught — on tape — groping Hilarie Burton.  (Those Affleck boys!  What a couple of scamps!)

And finally:

In a town where money talks, it’s interesting to note that, of the top 10 money-making movies of 2017, not one has been nominated for Best Picture!  In fact, more people paid money to see Wonder Woman (#10 on the list) than all the Best Picture nominees combined!  The big question then is, if these 9 nominees for Best Picture of the entire year are so damn good, how come most people didn’t bother to go see them?

I have the feeling that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences just told all us common folk, in no uncertain terms, that we prefer crap!