1. MGM AUCTION IS ON:
The buzz is that venerable studio turned debt-addled holding company MGM/UA will be put on the block in a process that should begin after Thanksgiving. Here's what I hope comes out of this whole process:
A. MGM/UA will be kept whole, and not sold off in chunks to the four corners of the media world. There's been too much consolidation in the industry, and not enough competition, making it lazy and complacent.
B. That whoever buys MGM/UA buys it with the intent to get it out of the debt trap it's in and make it a viable independent company, and not just a piece to shuffled around in a game of accounting-go-round.
C. That MGM/UA is reborn as the sort of company that will shake-off the self-fulfilling idiocies of Hollywood, and maybe get the rest of the industry off its ass.
2. RIDDLE ME THIS...
Watch this trailer for the British thriller Harry Brown...
Like the recently deceased Edward Woodward, Caine, who is 76 years old, is a much more believable action "tough guy" than most of the current crop of alleged action stars.
Where's the next Lee Marvin, Charles Bronson, or Clint Eastwood. The sort of guys who look like they could take on a room full of goons and come out on top. Or give an icy glare that could freeze mercury.
I blame three culprits. The 1980s, special effects, and Hollywood's obsession with youth. In the 1980s the rebellion of the 1970s shifted into an obsession with posturing and pithy catch-phrases. Special effects turned the action from gun fight and two fisted brawls into elaborate extravaganzas that violate the laws of physics and divorces movie action from the reality that really tough-looking characters brought to the role. Then there's the obsession with youth, and anyone who looks like someone hardened from combat either on the streets, or the battlefield, is automatically disqualified from having a career, because they'll never make the cover of People Magazine's "Most Beautiful" issue.
It just makes me cranky.
3. DO YOU EVER FEEL LIKE YOU'RE BEING USED?
ABC has been flooded with complaints over a performance on its recent American Music Awards, and it's got them so upset that they dropped a guest appearance by the offending star on Good Morning America.
Now I have a little message for all of you who wrote to ABC to complain.
YOU ARE BEING USED.
The whole thing was staged for the express purpose of getting you to send a message to the network telling them how offended you are by all that "indecency," so the yahoo in question (whose name I don't remember) can get way more publicity than he would if just sang the damn song and did a traditionally banal interview on morning TV.
The publicity probably won't help his career, but his handlers told him that it was a slam dunk for stardom, and he went for it.
All you will accomplish by writing to the FCC, getting congress to hold hearings, and all the other clap-trap these things start is getting more dance numbers involving bared nipples and simulated fellatio, finally ending with a performance on the Tony Awards that features S&M with Hal Linden and Angela Lansbury.
It's the same thing as when the PMRC got its high-brow panties in a twist about suggestive lyrics, and had warning labels slapped on CD cases. Suddenly everybody wanted one because controversy got them attention, and everyone kept trying to top one another.\
So please, when someone tries to offend you, ignore them, you're outrage is their fuel. Deny them the cheap attention, and they'll eventually shut up.
4. A LITTLE SMILE
Here's a little break from all my ranting and raving, just sit back and smile.