DID YOU READ

The 2011 Golden Globe Winners

The 2011 Golden Globe Winners (photo)

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In a night of very few surprises, “The Social Network” continued its dominance of the 2011 awards season, racking up four Golden Globes for Best Picture (Drama), Best Director (David Fincher), Best Screenplay (Aaron Sorkin), and Best Score (Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross). Along with “Social Network,” Fincher, and Sorkin, most of the Oscar frontrunners showed no signs of slipping from their positions in their respective races. Colin Firth won best dramatic actor for “The King’s Speech,” while Natalie Portman took home best dramatic actress for “Black Swan” and my personal award for the Most Endearingly Awkward Moment of the night when she cracked herself up delivering a joke about her meeting her fiance on the set of the film.

The best supporting performances both came from David O. Russell’s boxing movie, “The Fighter” — Christian Bale won on the male side and Melissa Leo won on the female side, besting her co-star Amy Adams — while Annette Bening won best comedic actress for “The Kids Are All Right.” Really, the only true shocker of the night came in the category of best comedic actor, which went to Paul Giamatti in “Barney’s Version” over two Johnny Depps (“The Tourist” and “Alice in Wonderland”), Jake Gyllenhaal, and Kevin Spacey. Giamatti also netted my personal award for Most Uncomfortably Awkward Moment of the night for the sheepish pass he made at presenter Halle Berry during his acceptance speech followed by the cut to a shot of Berry expressing what I would charitably describe as disinterest.

Here’s the full lineup of film winners at the Globes:

Best Motion Picture – Drama: “The Social Network”
Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy: “The Kids Are All Right”
Best Director: David Fincher, “The Social Network”
Best Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, “The Social Network”
Best Actor – Drama: Colin Firth, “The King’s Speech”
Best Actress – Drama: Natalie Portman, “Black Swan”
Best Actor – Musical or Comedy: Paul Giamatti, “Barney’s Version”
Best Actress – Musical or Comedy: Annette Bening, “The Kids Are All Right”
Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale, “The Fighter”
Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo, “The Fighter”
Best Foreign Language Film: “In a Better World”
Best Animated Film: “Toy Story 3”
Best Original Score:Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, “The Social Network”
Best Original Song: Diane Warren (“You Haven’t Seen The Last of Me”), “Burlesque”

Since the actual awards yielded so few surprises or memorable speeches, what people will be talking about around the water cooler tomorrow — or Tuesday if they’ve got tomorrow off for Martin Luther King Day — is the hosting job delivered by Ricky Gervais. When he hosted last year, Gervais was so fearless in attacking the stars and the Hollywood Foreign Press Association that I was certain he’d never be invited to host any awards show again, much less the Golden Globes. To my shock, the Globes invited him back and he delivered a monologue for the ages, equally brutal and brutally funny. Here it is:

As the night went on, Gervais’ introductions didn’t grow any warmer (he welcomed Bruce Willis to the stage by rattling off a list of credits of his worst movies including “Hudson Hawk” and “Color of Night” and describing him as “Ashton Kutcher’s dad”). After slaughtering one celebrity after another, Gervais vanished completely from the show’s final hour, prompting quite a few viewers to begin wondering aloud on Twitter and Facebook whether the Hollywood Foreign Press Association had kicked him off the show in mid-broadcast. I’m reading descriptions from journalists in the room that the jokes played poorly in Beverly Hills, and that’s not surprising: Gervais’ targets are so pampered they aren’t used to even hearing the word ‘no,’ much less getting teased for the terrible movies they occasionally (or often) make.

I have no idea whether Gervais will be back for a third tour of duty on the Globes, but I admired his effort. While long bubbling claims of impropriety about the HFPA resurfaced in the days leading up to the awards, all any of the winners had to say was “Thank you to the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for this incredible honor.” Someone had to address the elephant in the room, and it clearly wasn’t going to be Colin Firth.

Awards mean very little; I want to say awards mean nothing but that’s not true. They do mean something, and that something is money. That’s why people bribe lobby so hard for these awards; because they look good on ads that encourage people to go to the theater. And if they get a reluctant viewer to go see “Black Swan,” they’ve served a purpose. But we make too much out of them, and Gervais did a fine job of reminding us of that. I — and I suspect a lot of people — watch the Golden Globes for two reasons: out of obligation and to make fun of them. Gervais is the perfect Globes host because he understands both those impulses.

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Hard Out

Comedy From The Closet

Janice and Jeffrey Available Now On IFC's Comedy Crib

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She’s been referred to as “the love child of Amy Sedaris and Tracy Ullman,” and he’s a self-described “Italian who knows how to cook a great spaghetti alla carbonara.” They’re Mollie Merkel and Matteo Lane, prolific indie comedians who blended their robust creative juices to bring us the new Comedy Crib series Janice and Jeffrey. Mollie and Matteo took time to answer our probing questions about their series and themselves. Here’s a taste.

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IFC: How would you describe Janice and Jeffrey to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Mollie & Matteo: Janice and Jeffrey is about a married couple experiencing intimacy issues but who don’t have a clue it’s because they are gay. Their oblivion makes them even more endearing.  Their total lack of awareness provides for a buffet of comedy.

IFC: What’s your origin story? How did you two people meet and how long have you been working together?

Mollie: We met at a dive bar in Wrigley Field Chicago. It was a show called Entertaining Julie… It was a cool variety scene with lots of talented people. I was doing Janice one night and Matteo was doing an impression of Liza Minnelli. We sort of just fell in love with each other’s… ACT! Matteo made the first move and told me how much he loved Janice and I drove home feeling like I just met someone really special.

IFC: How would Janice describe Jeffrey?

Mollie: “He can paint, cook homemade Bolognese, and sing Opera. Not to mention he has a great body. He makes me feel empowered and free. He doesn’t suffocate me with attention so our love has room to breath.”

IFC: How would Jeffrey describe Janice?

Matteo: “Like a Ford. Built to last.”

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Mollie & Matteo: Our current political world is mirroring and reflecting this belief that homosexuality is wrong. So what better time for satire. Everyone is so pro gay and equal rights, which is of course what we want, too. But no one is looking at middle America and people actually in the closet. No one is saying, hey this is really painful and tragic, and sitting with that. Having compassion but providing the desperate relief of laughter…This seemed like the healthiest, best way to “fight” the gay rights “fight”.

IFC: Hummus is hilarious. Why is it so funny?

Mollie: It just seems like something people take really seriously, which is funny to me. I started to see it in a lot of lesbians’ refrigerators at a time. It’s like observing a lesbian in a comfortable shoe. It’s a language we speak. Pass the Hummus. Turn on the Indigo Girls would ya?

See the whole season of Janice and Jeffrey right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Die Hard Dads

Inspiration For Die Hard Dads

Die Hard is on IFC all Father's Day Long

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection, GIPHY

Yippee ki-yay, everybody! It’s time to celebrate the those most literal of mother-effers: dads!

And just in case the title of this post left anything to the imagination, IFC is giving dads balls-to-the-wall ’80s treatment with a glorious marathon of action trailblazer Die Hard.

There are so many things we could say about Die Hard. We could talk about how it was comedian Bruce Willis’s first foray into action flicks, or Alan Rickman’s big screen debut. But dads don’t give a sh!t about that stuff.

No, dads just want to fantasize that they could be deathproof quip factory John McClane in their own mundane lives. So while you celebrate the fathers in your life, consider how John McClane would respond to these traditional “dad” moments…

Wedding Toasts

Dads always struggle to find the right words of welcome to extend to new family. John McClane, on the other hand, is the master of inclusivity.
Die Hard wedding

Using Public Restrooms

While nine out of ten dads would rather die than use a disgusting public bathroom, McClane isn’t bothered one bit. So long as he can fit a bloody foot in the sink, he’s G2G.
Die Hard restroom

Awkward Dancing

Because every dad needs a signature move.
Die Hard dance

Writing Thank You Notes

It can be hard for dads to express gratitude. Not only can McClane articulate his thanks, he makes it feel personal.
Die Hard thank you

Valentine’s Day

How would John McClane say “I heart you” in a way that ain’t cliche? The image speaks for itself.
Die Hard valentines

Shopping

The only thing most dads hate more than shopping is fielding eleventh-hour phone calls with additional items for the list. But does McClane throw a typical man-tantrum? Nope. He finds the words to express his feelings like a goddam adult.
Die Hard thank you

Last Minute Errands

John McClane knows when a fight isn’t worth fighting.
Die Hard errands

Sneaking Out Of The Office Early

What is this, high school? Make a real exit, dads.
Die Hard office

Think you or your dad could stand to be more like Bruce? Role model fodder abounds in the Die Hard marathon all Father’s Day long on IFC.

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Founding Farters

Know Your Nerd History

Revenge of the Nerds is on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection, GIFs via Giphy

That we live in the heyday of nerds is no hot secret. Scientists are celebrities, musicians are robots and late night hosts can recite every word of the Silmarillion. It’s too easy to think that it’s always been this way. But the truth is we owe much to our nerd forebearers who toiled through the jock-filled ’80s so that we might take over the world.

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Our humble beginnings are perhaps best captured in iconic ’80s romp Revenge of the Nerds. Like the founding fathers of our Country, the titular nerds rose above their circumstances to culturally pave the way for every Colbert and deGrasse Tyson that we know and love today.

To make sure you’re in the know about our very important cultural roots, here’s a quick download of the vengeful nerds without whom our shameful stereotypes might never have evolved.

Lewis Skolnick

The George Washington of nerds whose unflappable optimism – even in the face of humiliating self-awareness – basically gave birth to the Geek Pride movement.

Gilbert Lowe

OK, this guy is wet blanket, but an important wet blanket. Think Aaron Burr to Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton. His glass-mostly-empty attitude is a galvanizing force for Lewis. Who knows if Lewis could have kept up his optimism without Lowe’s Debbie-Downer outlook?

Arnold Poindexter

A music nerd who, after a soft start (inside joke, you’ll get it later), came out of his shell and let his passion lead instead of his anxiety. If you played an instrument (specifically, electric violin), and you were a nerd, this was your patron saint.

Booger

A sex-loving, blunt-smoking, nose-picking guitar hero. If you don’t think he sounds like a classic nerd, you’re absolutely right. And that’s the whole point. Along with Lamar, he simultaneously expanded the definition of nerd and gave pre-existing nerds a twisted sort of cred by association.

Lamar Latrell

Black, gay, and a crazy good breakdancer. In other words, a total groundbreaker. He proved to the world that nerds don’t have a single mold, but are simply outcasts waiting for their moment.

Ogre

Exceedingly stupid, this dumbass was monumental because he (in a sequel) leaves the jocks to become a nerd. Totally unheard of back then. Now all jocks are basically nerds.

Well, there they are. Never forget that we stand on their shoulders.

Revenge of the Nerds is on IFC all month long.

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