If you’re not watching “Damages” you need to seriously reevaluate your Netflix subscription

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Remember the days of “oohs!” and “aahs!” when it came to your Netflix instant queue? I HAVE to watch that. I heard the juxtaposition of post-modernity and consumerism coupled with Brad Pitt’s abs will scintillate both mind and loins. A cinematic mung bean fricassee for all! Well my friends, those days are long gone. No longer are we met with endless upon endless films that systematically wet our mind, body and soul. Because you’ve either already seen it, re-watched it a couple times (Arrested Development never gets old) or can’t get through the first 5 minutes of some British TV show that’s supposed to be funny, but just ends up being the poor man’s version of the 2012 London Olympic opening ceremony.

More or less a summary of the 2012 Olympic Opening ceremony. Gif via media.photobucket.com

Among all the terrible, horrible, good-for-nothing things on Netflix, there remains a couple gems that may have slipped under your radar. One of them is Damages

Here are three things I’ve learned so far from watching season 1 of Damages and why you should definitely be watching:

  1. What I find most appealing and thought provoking is that every single character solidifies the idea that there is no inherent good or bad in this world. And god damn is it refreshing. It never gives in to a society-at-large that wishes with all its Christmas spirit that cut-and-dried, good and evil truly exist. Instead, Damages exposes us to the cold hard fact that we live in a spectral continuum of being a huge dick or being pretty cool. In other words: Black and White, meet 50 billion shades of self-righteous gray.
  2. Glenn Close. GLENN CLOSE. When I was little and exposed to her in the live-action version 101 Dalmatians, I was like “that lady is MEAN!” and I didn’t care much for her. As I am older and a bit wiser, I realize what an uninformed jerk I was at 7. She is a phenomenal actress, and is the absolute anchor of this series in one of the best roles ever written on television.  Her portrayal of Patty Hewes has you questioning EVERYTHING about anything, whether it be character motives on the show, things in your own life, or why your stoned friend is eyeing the fuck out of your dessert.
  3. Trust no one. Is it a product of living in an untrustworthy society, or is it a dramatic, Hollywood interpretation of wading through the waters of Société Elite? Probably both. All I know is that if you have to ask someone if they can be trusted, they’re probably going to end up killing you right before they eat a mediocre sandwich. The more you know!

Dayum! Kristen Stewart cheating pics, so much (alleged) tongue

Image via Usweekly.com

Scandalous!!!! But really? In a car? If I was followed constantly like her, it’s like almost wanting to get caught. Maybe she let him go down on her in a car to get caught and feel human, maybe come down from the millionairess-adored-by-billions-of-vampire-addicts cloud she sat on last week.

Or maybe it’s a feminist move, like “hey, women can cheat too!” Which is kinda bullshit that she’ll take more flack for this whole mess. Yes, she broke a sparkly, British vampire’s heart and is waaay more famous than this previously no name director. But Rupert Sanders has two kids and is MARRIED. That’s a lot larger of a bond to break with your dick than a girl in a relationship gettin’ it on with her clit. Truth!

Dayuuuuum he is dreamy. Sadsies all around. Image via fanpop.com

What a shitty situation for EVERYONE involved. Cheating never ends well. The cheaters always sound SO insincere when they apologize. Via People, Kristen released this statement:

“I’m deeply sorry for the hurt and embarrassment I’ve caused to those close to me and everyone this has affected. This momentary indiscretion has jeopardized the most important thing in my life, the person I love and respect the most, Rob. I love him, I love him, I’m so sorry.”

And from Rupert Sanders:

“I am utterly distraught about the pain I have caused my family,” Sanders tells PEOPLE in an exclusive statement. “My beautiful wife and heavenly children are all I have in this world. I love them with all my heart. I am praying that we can get through this together.”

I think I’ll write a song called “I Love Him, I Love Him (I’m So Sorry)”. Fucking gold. But really, it’s pointless to lambast either of them because people make mistakes. However, the affair/tryst/romp in the car happened last week, so who knows if it would have gone on for longer or not. It is, however, highly unfortunate that all of this had to be dealt with in the media. It’s embarrassing for everyone involved.

And now we wait for Robert Pattinson to comment. Come on! It’s been almost a whole day! (I’m so sorry)

While you’re at it, F me on Facebook

TV: Why Smash is better than Glee

Image via nbc.com

I’m not a huge fan of theater shows on TV, because I’ve never watched one that seemed anything more than an overblown and out of proportion take on how people in theater act in “real life.” It’s also almost always done in a really campy, not relatable way that people who have never been in theater don’t understand.

Of course I’m sure we’ve all met people who have been in or are in theater. Sure they are a little quirky, but isn’t anyone in a creative industry quirky? However, not ALL of them are crazy weirdos like those creeps on Glee. (Read a good explanation as to why Glee sucks here) Don’t even get me started on the absolute shit hole that is GleeSmash is nothing like Glee. 

Hahahaha. Image via sodahead.com

First of all, I’m surprised at how well casted this show is. Anjelica Houston, Debra Messing, Katharine McPhee, Megan Hilty and the whole gang were all really good choices. It seems at any moment if you were to run into one of the characters in real life, that they would actually exist as human beings and be believable. Rachel Berry and company on the other hand…

Second, the show takes musical theater on Broadway to a more human level. None of the characters are decidedly so far off the spectrum quirky or “too” theater, whatever that means. The actresses vying for the role of Marilyn on Smash are hard working gals living in NYC who are immersed or trying to break into the acting world. That sounds realistic. And the writers, choreographers and producers seem relatively honest portrayals of professionals in the theater biz as well. They aren’t trying to ruin each others lives (yet) in what seem like cheap and easy, not to mention repetitive, story lines with horrible acting. (I hate Glee.)

All in all, Smash is the least self indulgent theater show I’ve ever seen on television. They’re not (yet) selling an album full of songs that are shittier than the original to everyone with too much expendable income. Basically, Glee is sloppy television and product marketing at its absolute finest; Smash is a tv show (with less obvious marketing) about musical theater in NYC. If I have to pick a show about theater on TV, Imma go with the latter.

Netflix nightcap: Me Without You

Image via cahiersducinemode.wordpress.com

Michelle Williams rarely ever picks a bad movie. Every movie I’ve ever seen with MW has been amazing. Blue Valentine, Wendy and Lucy, Brokeback Mountain, etc. Gurlfriend knows how to pick a flick.

Me Without You is another one of those pesky Netflix movies that always shows up but never gets watched. I didn’t know it was from 2001, until I saw Michelle Williams pre-waif, pre-Heath and pre-huge fame.

Image via reelingreviews.com

The movie centers around two neighbor best friends. They grow up through the 70s, 80s, 90s and end in 2001. I liked the movie, but that’s a whole lotta life and time to condense into 100 minutes. It doesn’t feel like it moves too fast, but it does feel like some individual character development gets lost in the story arc of the friendship. The friendship IS the movie, but it’s kind of like meeting a couple or “bestfriends*. You meet these weird, connected human beings and you never really get to know them individually besides some obvious characteristics.

It was definitely nice to watch a movie about two gal pals that wasn’t steeped in bullshit situations and lame dudes named shit like “Chip” or “Kevin” who are 25 and still talk about “the big game” because that was the peak of their life. The acting was solid, but what else do you expect from our girl Michelle?!

Yup. Been there. Image via cahiersducinemode.wordpress.com

If you’re feeling nostalgic about yesteryear, even if you weren’t alive in the 70s, watch it. There are some great girl moments including dressing up in trashbags in the forest, after leaving our parents homes of course, to look hip for a “cool party”. We’ve all donned some pretty crazy shit trying to look cool. If you’re not feeling good for a friendship drama that takes place mostly in the 70s/80s, skip it.

Nevertheless, the clothing is amazing. It’s crazy shit, but like the over the top kind of crazy that involves heroin and blow with a shot ton of tulle and fishnets. Stella McCartney for Chloé is to thank for the fashion in the film.

Sidenote: I’ve learned that Netflix has very weird copywriters who write the descriptions, because the descripts are always weird and not really that jiving with the film. I need to keep reminding myself that whoever is writing this shit ain’t workin too hard.

Netflix nightcap: The Romantics

The Romantics is a movie about a group of college friends reuniting for a wedding. A long burning love triangle makes things a little sticky and that’s basically the whole movie. That and a bunch of “we’re college friends” shit. Katie Holmes does a believable acting job, so good for her. I don’t much care for Josh Duhamel. He seems like a pretty face with not a whole lot of depth of character. Malin Ackerman was good too.

Image via goldcage.blogspot.com

As for the movie itself, it inches along without very much happening. 60 minutes go by and you still feel like it’s the first 20. The people are pretty, but none of the characters are really all that lovable and they don’t have any redeeming qualities whatsoever. Also, the story dwells on the obvious themes of relationship dramz between every friend in every possible way for way too long. Bleg. We get it! Everyone is horny for their friends because they’re not adult enough to not want to rub up against other shitty people.

With a few different cast change ups, the movie maybe would have faired better. Although I can’t really tell if it’s some of the cast that is blah or just the characters themselves that are so mootly unlikable that is the problem. They don’t even really seem to like each other that much.

I am definitely biased against witnessing annoying friends that only talk about how they all used to be such good friends. Almost as annoying as the entire How I Met Your Mother series. I fucking hate that show. Nothing is as annoying as HIMYM though. So hooray for The Romantics!

I’d suggest falling asleep to this movie. Otherwise, skip it for sure.

Netflix nightcap: Biutiful

Image via criticsatlarge.ca

Javier Bardem plays Uxbal, a black marketer who can talk to spirits and was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer. A through and through dramatic, sad yet honest and beautiful portrayal of a peripheral life in Spain. I’ve always enjoyed Spanish films, as they have this ability to show the uncomfortable truths about life that Hollywood can’t seem to cope with.

If you feel like weeping and want to watch a BRILLIANT and perfect performance of a dying man, watch Biutiful. Javier Bardem is more than phenomenal. Everything had me crying. The acting, the storylines, the people, everything. To watch a dying man tie up his affairs while dealing with every shitty thing that could possibly happen is an astounding look into the human character.

It also makes me want to hug every single person on the planet just because.