Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The Hills Are Alive...with the Sound of Bitching

If you didn't watch it, shut up. If you did watch it, shut up. There has been such a negative response to poor Carrie Underwood's attempt at interpreting Julie Andrews' impeccable Maria in The Sound of Music that I feel the need (okay egotistical desire) to weigh in (no poundage jokes people) on the subject.
Yes, I watched it. Yes it was uneven and awkward at times. And yes, I read the vitriol of certain, sometimes envious (& usually anonymous) actors, on the web griping about it. Pretty much no one could reproduce Andrews' classic performance in the film  or anywhere else. But the role requires clear soaring vocals that nail the vocalises in this story. But hey, Carrie never said she was better than Andrews, Carrie (as far as I know) never said she was better than anyone else and she never claimed to be an actress or a dancer. For those who complain that that was the problem, I doubt Katy Perry or even Madonna (who went to GREAT trouble to secure the Evita film role) let alone any other pop princess could have handled them, good vocalists that they are.
Actors who are eating their sour grapes should be gracious enough to realize that hitting your marks while singing your ass off isn't the same as singing/doing The Hokey Pokey even when you ARE trained to do so. I think those actors (the aforementioned "anonymous" ones) who complained owe an apology to someone who was freakin' brave enough to take it on--namely Carrie. She gave it her best shot and personally I think perhaps the direction might have been a little shaky or perhaps awkwardness inducing at the least.
If you want to complain, you might point out the Captain's housekeeper (checked IMDB couldn't find her credit) who spoke to Maria with an odd, hesitating response to questions and then repeated the lines in the same way. 
I'd have probably re-cast Audra McDonald as the Mother Abbess only because her vocals took the songs to operatic levels, a lovely ability but a bit out of orbit for a Broadway type performance.
When I read those "anonymous" actors whining I wanted to scream out "Hey, get an agent if you're so damned talented and professional, THEN you might have enough standing to criticize someone else!" (It's always the cowardly "anonymous" ones who complain the most bitterly and loudly.)
Now I realize that any creative careers for lack of a better term this late at night, are to say the least FRUSTRATING. Not to mention COMPETITIVE. But that's the nature of these beasts and I might be naive in thinking we can dredge up some type of graciousness but I still think Carrie Underwood deserves an E for effort. Like I said, live performance is hard even if you've been classically trained since you could gurgle out "mama" as a ten-month-old.
Everybody step back and think about your scariest live performance (or imagine one if you don't actually sing/act/dance) and give Miss Underwood a little credit. 

The Egypsy Has Spoken.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Vacancy/No Vacancy

Now that I won't be dragged screaming and kicking from California, I think I've finally figured something out. I feel so strongly about this that I'm going to blog about it.
For time untold people from other places have denigrated Los Angeles and in fact pretty much everyone who lives here in the Golden State. They say we're shallow. They say we're stupid. An estranged relative of mine even snapped that "You're all phonies out there! You're all a bunch of actors!"
Well, okay, that pretty much hits the mark. But in defense of our "vacancy" let me put forth this:
Yes, we may be blond. Yes, we may actors. And yes, we may have so much plastic in our bodies we barely qualify as human beings any longer, but I still love us and our blank positivity. Why?
Because as actors/entertainers, we're under constant stress to perform, to attain and amass huge quantities of fame, money, and more fame and money and in order to do that we sacrifice, we struggle uphill with that vacant smile on our faces, refusing to acknowledge that we're down or desperate and that underneath it all, that gnawing fear of the possibility of getting it all, losing it all, getting it all again and then losing it permanently (some of us are personally acquainted with this) hangs over our souls like vampire glitter. And we do this as we drive on our freeways as thick and twisted and stressful as Medusa's head. (No, NOT MEDEA, MEDUSA. Look it up in Greek mythology ya' little Freakles! And DON'T steal my nicknames. I will find and out you!)

It pisses me off to no end when I hear people (still!) bitch "Don't tell ME to have a good day! I'll have whatever day I want!" in response to our "Have a nice day!" rejoinders.
Don't you foolish people understand?
We're DE-Stressing.
When we ask you "How are you?" as we take your order or ring up your grocery receipt, we're not really asking. And when we respond, "Fine!" we're not really telling. And when we tell you to have a nice day, we're saying "I have no idea who you are and I really don't care."
Shallow? Cruel? Inconsiderate?
Bite your tongue (those who don't have pierced ones)!
Not at all!
We know that if we ask each other how we are, we really don't want to open up that can of snakes (Medusa, get it yet?). Just like we know that giving a truthful answer isn't what we want to know either. Most times we don't want to open up either's can of snakes--it's all we can do to deal with it alone.
So we level it out. We shallow it. ALL of us have drama going on in our lives; some of it horrific, some of it silly. The value of our vacancy is our knowledge of where the drama really belongs and where we put it: in front of the camera.
Have a nice day!

The Egypsy Has Spoken.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Haven't been here for a while but that doesn't mean I haven't been busy! Dealing first and foremost with health issues both mine and my family's and then travelling. Now I'm back and I have an actual moment or two to--yes, you know it--rant about minutiae. 
I hate it when this happens.  Dreaded intellectualism rears its ugly self up into my brain and makes me watch smarty pants television.  Yes, I know television and smart? Damn near impossible. (If you want to argue with me on this point, all I can say is "Honey Boo Boo")
What is this smarty pants show I refer to? Well, it certainly isn't the SyFy channel. No no no, it's the divinely produced directed and acted series, The Borgias. And I hate that I love it so much. Hell, I'm not even a true fan of The Renaissance. But that's me. While everyone is soaking up Game of Throbs, er, throats, er tes--oops, I mean Game of Thrones, there I am watching what is aptly billed The Original Crime Family, eyes sucked out and glued to the hi def screen. How did this happen? I was flipping through channels, desperate as usual for something of substance to watch (heel evil intellect, heel I say!) I stopped at The Borgias and that was it. Hooked from the opening credits, I've been running away as fast and hard as I can but it always manages to sink its wicked nails into my brain. And it has nothing to do with my obsession with history. From Jeremy Irons' Rodrigo Borgia to Mark Phelan's drunk, this is a brilliant piece of work by anyone's standards. It's one of the few shows I can watch as a total fan without noticing details like lighting, props, etc., and etc., that's how perfected this series is. Besides, Irons is MADE for those Papal robes. If I had to use one word to describe it: delicious.
That was a nice rant I guess.
Oh, here's something that pisses me off: when people friend me or connect with me somewhere and immediately pitch their product to me. I know because I used to do it too. Now I realize how annoying it is, and I hate people doing it to me. If you want to sales pitch me, say so. That way I can ignore you.
Hey I wouldn't be me if I didn't bitch about something!

Latest favorite song/video: SAIL by AWOLNATION. Check out the video:

LOVE his screaming voice.

The Egypsy Has Spoken.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Hobbit or Hobbled?

Dare I say it? I haven't seen The Hobbit yet, even after I promised to review it.  Scarier is the admission that I probably won't in the near future, even on pay per view. Why? The nearest I can figure is that I'm just plain uninterested. Here's a horrid confession from a sci-fi/fantasy/etc., novelist: I'm burnt the hell out.  I've completely overdosed on CG/live action film and that's a confession that horrifies even me. I never thought I'd live to say it but there it is hanging out for the world to see. To quote Jerry Seinfeld, "That's one big Matzo ball."
You know this is all Hollywood politics' fault. If this film had been done fairly soon after the LOTR I'd have been right there first in line like I was for Fellowship, Two Towers and Return of the King. But no. The execs had to wrangle each other for years to get Peter Jackson to come back and film the damned thing the way only he can!  I finally gave up reading the trades and figured when they realized they wanted even more money, the film would go into production.
And it did.
However, Hollywood greed as it often does, reared its tentacled head and they did the unthinkable: padded the story. I guess the heads figured they could exploit the fan's love of the original characters in the LOTR films such as Legolas (shoulda' seen that coming!) by shoving them into the Hobbit story even though they never appeared in the book. Not only did they stick in people who don't belong there, apparently they've added subplots or plot points that never existed in the original either. The most insulting thing of all is that they stretched out the Hobbit story into THREE (3) films!
I may be wrong here but nowhere did there seem to be the hoopla and anticipation of the beloved LOTR releases over The Hobbit's debut. It seemed to have a bit of fanfare, premiered and released and then dove right into the pay-per-view netherworld where it may or may not belong. As I said I have not seen the film.
But in  a way it serves Hollywood right. They insult the audience by messing with the story line and character changes as if the audience is too stupid to realize what the hell they're trying to do. I mean come on, dragging the story out to three books? I might have actually accepted that had it been released say, what, five years ago? 
I think I'd still be enthusiastic and still excited had I not had to wait an insulting amount of time between all of these books.
But the problem here is that in the meantime between warring Hollywood factions there has been a glut of other, more CG capable movies released in that time causing my OD of visuals.
And no amount of hot hot hot dwarves is going to assuage my fury.  Of course that may be the only reason I DO see the film. 

~~The Egypsy Has Spoken~~