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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

20 Weeks To Dreamgirls

Dreamgirls landed in Beverly Hills (and across the country) last night

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84 Responses to “20 Weeks To Dreamgirls”

  1. Erik Childress says:

    I think someone has been smoking the Phantom of the Opera pipe again.

  2. David Poland says:

    Keep selling that one, Erik.
    I’ll be over here with the M$B pipe.

  3. James Leer says:

    I don’t really think Beyonce’s got a strong shot at this point. She doesn’t have a character to play until maybe the last fifteen minutes of the movie. If she gets a nomination, it’s only because that category is so weak (I mean, Sylvia Sims? Really?)
    Likewise, Jennifer Hudson is too absent for the second half of the movie (and too much a novice to the industry – where does she even go from here?) to go into Best Actress and win. They would be foolish to take her out of Supporting, where she is the presumed front-runner, and slot her in Best Actress up against huge heavyweight veterans.
    Additionally, I heard a couple complaints last night about Hudson’s performance, which I found uneven (she’s great when she has a line, blank when she doesn’t)…notably that it was way too polite for what’s supposed to be an unhinged, carnal diva. Don’t get me wrong, I think she’s a lock to be nominated, but I think she’d only have a shot at winning in Supporting.

  4. Wrecktum says:

    *suck* *suck*

  5. Rob says:

    Oh, Jesus. Start filing your “Whatever happened to Jennifer Hudson?” stories now.

  6. Jonj says:

    The trailer for “The Pursuit of Happyness” makes it look nothing more than a by-the-numbers TV movie. Perhaps I’m wrong. I know it’s a fact-based movie. If “Little Children” doesn’t expand wider, it doesn’t appear to have much in the way of award hopes. Are they going to create buzz for this film on just 35 screens?

  7. T.H. says:

    If “Little Children” doesn’t get lots of critics awards, there’s no justice. Granted NewLine doesn’t have the staff and they’re just getting going with screenings now, but it’ll pick up.
    http://newlineawards.com/

  8. Me says:

    I’m not sure there’s really going to be strong enough word-of-mouth for Little Children. It’s a majorly depressing movie that doesn’t really have the gravity that In The bedroom had. Winslet deserves a nod (and a win), but I doubt the movie’ll do much more than that.

  9. grandcosmo says:

    The Onion’s AV Club has an interesting discussion up about the malignancy of the Oscar Prognosticators.
    http://www.avclub.com/content/node/55343/1

  10. Radewart says:

    Dave, are you really that high on “Pursuit of Happyness” for best picture? Alot of people (Jeffrey Wells and Tom O’Neil) are saying Smith, but the movie lacks to get into the best picture race. I tend to think that’s the case. This will be Smith showcase but the actual movie is weak.

  11. T.H. says:

    Chickens slam DP at HE knowing he won’t respond there. 1) It’s a popularity contest. 2) Dreamgirls will give the telecast a boost.

  12. Erik Childress says:

    You mistake what I’m selling, Dave. I have little doubt Dreamgirls will be down for a slew of a nominations. I’m referring to the film’s quality. Not quite Rent or Phantom of the Opera bad, but hovering somewhere well below mediocre.

  13. David Poland says:

    Don’t tell the audiences, Erik.

  14. LexG says:

    Jennifer Hudson in the Oscar race? Oh, the humanity. Seems just yesterday she was flashing the skunkeye to Simon Cowell and the American public on “American Idol,” and now she’s maybe, could be, probably a potential OSCAR NOMINEE? If I’m not mistaken, one time on “A.I.” they did “movie night,” where they had to sing a famous song from a movie, and Jen-Hud picked something from “Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit,” because it’s HER FAVORITE MOVIE OF ALL TIME. That alone should keep one out of the running for movie roles for life.
    Again, JENNIFER HUDSON???? What, Tarek from “The Apprentice” didn’t make a movie this year?

  15. David Poland says:

    T.H. – Mr. Wells is a hater and he draws haters to him.
    It’s funny how people who disagree with me – which is fine – try to spin whatever I write into some kind of drama. Did anyone really expect me to not like Flags? But when I didn’t, it couldn’t just be the film. It had to be that I was somehow pimping for other films. And when my position on that film became fairly mainstream, funny, none of those people wrote to tell me how right I had been.
    You know, I’ve written maybe 10 Dreamgirls pieces in 18 months, which is less than, say, USA Today. But somehow, if I like the film, it’s suspect. So what is my option? Not to like the film to somehow prove objectivity? Absurd. Not to write about it? Cowardly.
    So I just write what I feel and think and deal with it… cause any other choice means the haterists won.
    (Which is not to say that disagreeing with me makes you a hater… it’s the spin, spin, spin that is inevitably about me being wrong at any rhetorical cost, not about the actual discussion.)
    It’s a litle exhausting to deal with people who just want to find a reason to slam me. But you know, it’s my blog, my site, my column… I can walk away from it or shut down comments. But 85% of the comments are constructive, thoughtful and really quite smart. I am proud that I draw smart commenters and not many bashers. And I am pleased to be in this conversation with you all… even if it sometimes chafes.

  16. jeffmcm says:

    Everything you say is essentially correct, David. But still, it comes as absolutely no surprise that you would love this movie after this last year, where it seemed you were intending to love it all along. So please forgive your readers for how they/we approach your critical take on this one.

  17. palmtree says:

    “Jen-Hud picked something from “Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit,” because it’s HER FAVORITE MOVIE OF ALL TIME. That alone should keep one out of the running for movie roles for life.”
    Obviously, this is something that a singer would say. The movie is about singing and stars none other than Lauryn Hill.
    “What, Tarek from “The Apprentice” didn’t make a movie this year?”
    American Idol is a singing competition, and the movie required someone who was able to sing well.

  18. Me says:

    I never thought Cher could act very well, but Moonstruck is great. Geena Davis never seemed like much to me, but I loved her in the Accidental Tourist. Need we bring up Marisa Tomei?
    Why don’t we hold off the Hudson bashing until we actually see her?

  19. waterbucket says:

    D-Po, that article sounds like one long, giant, and poorly written orgasm.
    I like it whenever you’re flaming out over musicals like this.

  20. David Poland says:

    But, J Mc… your notion of this is intellectually dishonest. It’s simplistic and proven wrong over and over each week by things I write that people don’t expect, but when the expectations actually match the reality – VOILA!!! – Got Poland!!!
    Of course, the same bullshit happened after Cannes. Every single outlet raved about the 20 minutes of Dreamgirls, but somehow, I was predetermined and biased.
    So what is the right answer, J Mc? Because it’s not bothersome to me that people anticipated me liking this movie. It is this idiotic “gotcha” tone that creeps into the conversation. No one got me. And my objectivity has not been challenged. 95% of people I know of who have seen this film like this film. (And God bleess Childress for being in the 5%… and I don’t feel the need to accuse him of going against the grain just to get atention.) So what do I do to make it “okay” with you, pal?
    Is it okay if I like pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving? Do you want to tell me how I am going to feel about the stuffing this year? Because I’m predisposed to like one and not the other… but amazingly, I have have had pumkin pie I didn’t like and stuffing I did. Oh… and I like the white meat.. but occasionally grab that leg! Woo HEE!

  21. David Poland says:

    Glad you hated it, waterbucket. Now I know it will win over whatever you cream over this year.

  22. Stella's Boy says:

    David, I know it is too early to make a 10 best list, but at this point is Dreamgirls your favorite movie of the year, or is it just the movie you think will win BP? Or both?

  23. David Poland says:

    Little Children is still my favorite American film of the year. Dreamgirls will probably make the Second Five… maybe the Third Five… really need to see it again and see another 10 movies or so before I know.
    Best Picture is a different animal than my personal taste. Since I have been doing this, no BP winner has been on the top of my Top Ten. And none will be there this year.
    The discussion of whether Jennifer Hudson can beat Helen Mirren has been going on last night and this morning and what I see – and this is mostly true in Best Picture too – is that Academy voters choose emotion. There are some other indicators, but it is rare that they give the win to dry sophistication.
    If Dreamgirls felt preocupied with being an all-Black film, I would doubt it. If it felt mechanical, I would doubt it. But it is loaded with emotion. And it doesn’t have the violence of The Departed. And those are the only two movies with this kind of scope. I don’t see how it can lose… on objective, Academy terms.

  24. qwiggles says:

    Don’t tell “the audiences,” Dave?
    Erik was clarifying that he was not talking about DG’s probably reception but rather to his own assessment of it. What do “the audiences” (all of them?) have to do with that?

  25. qwiggles says:

    *probable

  26. David Poland says:

    I was being snide and quippy, Qwiggles.
    “I’m referring to the film’s quality. Not quite Rent or Phantom of the Opera bad, but hovering somewhere well below mediocre.”
    A flat assertion of truth… that puts Erik’s opinion in what seems so far to be a very small minority. Even those who don’t love it seem to be feeling it is significantly better than Erik feels it is.

  27. jeffmcm says:

    David, I take exception to you calling me ‘intellectually dishonest’, I would ask you to take that back.
    I don’t think anybody has a problem with you loving what you want to love. The issue is your seeming lack of awareness for how your opinions will be perceived. You have been perceived, rightly or wrongly, as having a jones for this movie for months, maybe even since it was announced. It doesn’t matter how correct that is, that is the perception that a large percentage of your readership has developed. Therefore, when you turned out to love this movie, it would have been savvy to acknowledge this entire year’s history. Because you are not just an average movie-goer; you are a guy trying to be a journalist and a critic and a movie-lover and a blogger all at the same time. I don’t know what to tell you about the ‘gotcha’ tone. That’s a wider blog issue.
    I’m asking you to see this from our perspective. I’m sure you’re honest in your appraisal of the movie, but it felt preordained.

  28. austin111 says:

    “Little Children is still my favorite American film of the year.”
    Hmmmm…..really! A good film, not a great one, imo. Nice work from Kate Winslet and Patrick Wilson, great work from some of the supporting cast (Jackie!!), but it left a decidedly icky taste in one’s mouth — wouldn’t you agree? Not something I’d really want to watch again and again even to savor like a true movie-loving geek (aside from Winslet and Wilson’s sex scenes, I guess). There were decidedly loose ends in that one. Like how in hell did Kate Winslet’s character end up with her husband? The two had absolutely no connection at all in the film. Even if that was supposed to be the point, it made no sense to me. There was just nothing there that made me believe there ever could have even been a relationship that would culminate in a child. Wilson and Connelly had more connectedness, even if it was somewhat dysfunctional. An odd choice to make.

  29. qwiggles says:

    Okay, granted, but you’re better than that. Someone flatly asserts that something you’ve gushed about is “well below mediocre?” Assert the opposite right back, in your own terms. It seems schoolyardish to make it a popularity contest instead: our film against your stray opinion.

  30. jeffmcm says:

    Just out of curiosity, how many pieces has DP written about Little Children?

  31. Wrecktum says:

    Hudson over Mirren? Is Hudson being positioned for a Best Actress slot? Insane!!

  32. Erik Childress says:

    It’s a dangerous game to start accusing people of pre-determined expectations, although I’m sure at some time or another both Dave and myself have directed such ire – usually in the direction of someone we have little respect for. Doesn’t necessarily excuse the fact, but it happens. I, for example, believe The Pursuit of Happyness is going to be Jeffrey Lyons’ favorite film of the year. And I say that because I’ve seen the film and he has the film taste of an 87-year old woman.
    But when I come to nudge Dave a little about his rave of the film, it’s a difference of opinion and little else. I think its batshit nuts to call this film a masterpiece (ahem, O’Neil) or to say it could/will break the Oscar nomination record, but it has nothing to do with some pre-ordained hype.
    We all know the difference between quality and “Oscar quality” and I’ll tell the audiences that when my review is eventually published. It irks me more that any reporter would quote an audience’s reaction as the mark of quality while at the same time blasting the Oscars for echoing those sentiments. Is it really a fair reaction if Jennifer Hudson is in the audience in her hometown and every time she sings there’s an applause break? Does the decibel level mean they really loved it or are just being polite? Or Bill Condon being in the audience? It’s that kind of reporting that makes certain industry professionals suspect. Sometimes they make a point early and often and then feel the need to justify it – even in the face of recognizing chinks in their armored defense (or offense.)

  33. Cadavra says:

    “…it comes as absolutely no surprise that you would love this movie after this last year, where it seemed you were intending to love it all along.”
    You could say the same about nearly all of us on THE DEPARTED.

  34. Telemachos says:

    Strange — the more raves DREAMGIRLS gets, the less I’m interested.

  35. jeffmcm says:

    True, Cadavra. I guess the only answer is, that’s a movie that generally deserves its accolades. Plus it never had the drumbeat that it seems DG has gotten.

  36. James Leer says:

    Ironic that a poster would compare this to DP’s “Phantom of the Opera” prognostication, since when he got a lot of shit for that back in the day, it was Bill Condon himself (according to a Hot Button column) who told DP to buck up.

  37. bipedalist says:

    DP you’re wrong; The Departed will be in your top ten.

  38. Aladdin Sane says:

    bipedalist, it probably will be. He just said nothing that’s been in his top ten recently has won best picture.

  39. jeffmcm says:

    No he said that nothing that’s won Best Picture has been at the top of his top ten, and as long as Little Children remains at the top of his list that should hold true. DP’s only Favorite Films that I can think of right off the top of my head are Adaptation (I think) for 2002 and The War Zone/Titus for 1999.

  40. bipedalist says:

    He also said that it wouldn’t be this year, didn’t he?
    I think Departed is the frontrunner for the win and it will top most everyone’s top ten lists and I bet Poland puts it at the very very top. Dreamgirls, though, will probably get the most nominations of any film.

  41. bipedalist says:

    Well Little Children at the top of Departed pretty high up.

  42. David Poland says:

    Well, it’s not my film. And Childress appears to be in a small minority at this point. There are very few films that have large majorities these days. If someone came on here and said The Queen was mediocre crap, I’d say the same thing… though not if they said it felt like a TV movie. And not if they attacked Little Children or Babel, which has a distinct split.
    Anyway…
    Sorry, J Mc. You have been reading me for a long time. And just because some of you – your notion of a majority supposes there is one and also supposes that “my” readers are all represented by comments – decided this last year does not make it intellectually honest to assume my opinion.
    As you know, I see hundreds of movies each year. And I am predisposed on every single one of them. And I walk in and clear my head and try to focus on the movie and nothing else for the running time. If anyone wants to tell me what I will think of the next ten movies I see and gets it right, please step up and let’s test my predictability.
    In this case, I am an aggrieved party, left with no viable “honest” option at all because a few of you have decided what I will think. I’m not going to get into the limitations I put in the comments on the film that are not as enthusiastic because it would be unkind to the film and empowering of the boo birds.
    So keep bringing it. Here you are… I expect to be dissapointed in Hairspray and to love Sweeney Todd. Start throwing the shit in my direction now!
    I know I should just shut up and take it, but when I allow false comments to sit unchallenged, they fester.
    Like this idea that I just start with my favorites and root them all the season. On May 15, my Top Five picks were Flags of Our Fathers / Red Sun, Black Sand, Dreamgirls, The Good German, The History Boys, All The King’s Men.
    So tell me

  43. David Poland says:

    Erik – I am jousting with you, gently.
    No, audience reaction is not the mark of quality… though it is at The Academy… since all they really are is a really interested audience.
    I am happy for you to have your opinion. I do expect it – given its severity – to be in a very slim minority of critics and audiences.
    For that matter, so was my take on Gladiator.

  44. David Poland says:

    Biped – I expect Departed to be in my Top Five. And I have had Top personal picks get nominated before… but not win.
    But again… I never con myself into thinking The Academy will match my personal tastes. As I said last year on Capote… it wasn’t about how much I liked the film, but that I felt it was one of the most palatable for Academy members. Same with Babel this year, but the other way.
    I enjoy, like anyone else, when my faves are embraced. But I certainly don’t expect it.

  45. Erik Childress says:

    I can take a gentle jousting, Dave. But you have to admit its been less than 24 hours. There have been a few written raves and the detractors probably aren’t talking much. I don’t know how many people we’re talking about if we’re not including “the audience” in this majority. But I suspect that minority is going to grow up to its opening – either legitimately or as a response to the hype and early raves. Trust me that I’ve heard more than a few people on this side of the fence.

  46. jeffmcm says:

    DP, I don’t understand exactly what you’re arguing in your most recent response to what I wrote. I think we may be misunderstanding each other. I would accept if you called me ‘lazy’ because I don’t read everything you write in The Hot Button and because I haven’t read the allegedly many other writers who have been writing about Dreamgirls as much as you have. All I can offer is my own perspective, which I obviously consider to be honest. And my perspective is that you have been championing this movie all year, and therefore shouldn’t be surprised when you get comments back of the ‘we’re not surprised’ variety. The problem isn’t what you like or don’t like. The problem is the indifference to the context.

  47. David Poland says:

    But you have created a false context, J Mc. As I wrote back in the summer, there has not been that much coverage of the film here and ther ehas been more on other film.
    This “he’s high on Dreamgirls” stuff has come up every time I have mentioned the movie in any way. And it was bullshit then. And it’s bullshit now.
    I am doing all I can to correct this notion, but you and some others are insistent… and me fighting it makes it, somehow, all the more confirmed for some.
    And as I wrote, it sucks because it leaves me no “right” answer. Everything is in this made up context.

  48. jeffmcm says:

    So what is your explanation for where this ‘false context’ came from in the first place? Thin air? Herd mentality?

  49. David Poland says:

    My sense of it is that it started with a prediction last year that Dreamgirls would be one of the top contenders, then grew as a riff on Phantom and then became “the Poland curse” and then just became “fact.”
    But the herd mentality on me and this film is now six months old… and a bore.

  50. Jonj says:

    Not to change the subject or anything — but does anyone else find it disturbing that “Babel” might not even make the cut for best picture? I realize it’s dividing audiences and critics like “Syriana” did last year. But it’s such a better film than that one and forms a great trilogy with “Amores Perros” and “21 Grams.” I really don’t want “Dreamgirls” to win either, but I won’t shoot the messenger here. David Poland is smart, honest about the business, and accessible to his readers. You can’t say that about most film critics. I still really hope he’s wrong about “Dreamgirls,” but he was the first one (to my knowledge) to declare “Million Dollar Baby” the movie to beat in a year that had been virtually conceded to “The Aviator.” And that was immediately following an early screening of the film.

  51. jeffmcm says:

    It may have originated there, but (again from my perspective) it took on a life of its own back around the time of that screening of the 20 minutes. And it was noticed by multiple blog participants.
    I agree that the discussion on this film and on you is a bore. Are you going to do anything about it or are you just going to stay the course?

  52. wongjongat says:

    I’m an avid visitor of this site, but I don’t post often at all. It seems to me, though, that people just need to chill…

  53. jeffmcm says:

    You’re probably right. I’m over it now, the conversation seems to have reached a decent stopping point.

  54. Lota says:

    I was pretty horrified when Chicago got all the noms it did, so I wouldn;t be surprised if DG did well too, regardless of the acting. If it is an engaging spectacle even without strong individual acting, I best it gets BP.
    Glad you’re shutting up Jeff, my, how you do go on, but Dave tries to explain too much. That’s his biz I guess, but it would be more fun if he reduced the type to rhyming lyrics when defending his words and Oscar potential choices.
    “If you try to knock me you’ll get mocked
    I’ll stir fry you in my wok
    Your knees’ll start shaking and your fingers pop
    Like a pinch on the neck of Mr. Spock ” (credit Beasties)
    rock on
    There’s no accounting for taste, or speculation of Academy taste.

  55. jeffmcm says:

    Well, screw you too, Lota.

  56. Lota says:

    Sorry Jeff! you’re not on my list.

  57. jeffmcm says:

    Ewww, there’s a list?

  58. Lota says:

    some of us have aspirations other than picking on Dave’s word order Jeff!

  59. Radewart says:

    What’s with all the “Happyness” love on your charts David. Most folks say Smith likely and nothing else.

  60. jeffmcm says:

    Whatever, I still like you, Lota, even if you don’t like me.

  61. jeffmcm says:

    Hey DP, is there some easy way for us to revisit your years-past top ten lists, or must we wade through your archives to find those Hot Button entries?

  62. jeffmcm says:

    (Never mind – the archives are in fact quite easy to navigate, thanks to your putting your Top Ten on Dec. 31 every year.)

  63. Stella's Boy says:

    Dreamgirls screened where I live on Wednesday night as well. I couldn’t go but my boss did and I emailed him to see what he thought. His exact words were, “It’s not a very good movie but it’s a good experience.” He doesn’t think it has any chance at BP.

  64. “Likewise, Jennifer Hudson is too absent for the second half of the movie (and too much a novice to the industry – where does she even go from here?)”
    Maybe she could actually forge a career in, SHOCK, musicals. Become a face of the genre, ya know. It’s not unheard of.
    “Again, JENNIFER HUDSON???? What, Tarek from “The Apprentice” didn’t make a movie this year?”
    Firstly, Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit was all sorts of awesome if you were young and it’s a guilty pleasure of many people. Secondly, could it be that she was on AI cause she was a talented singer (she is) and I’m sure there are many actors who had less theatrical beginnings. Get over it.
    “Little Children… An odd choice to make.”
    And what should the right choice be?

    In the end, what I read the article as was Dave responding to a movie that was deemed the frontrunner from day one and a movie that people seem predisposed to hate and detest (much like ppl like Jeff think Dave is predisposed to love) and who routinely question it’s status as the frontrunner even though it’s never been seen.
    It seems people would’ve only been satisfied if he reported it was bad.
    People need to get over themselves. Just because they think Russian movies about disabled turtle doves should win Best Picture ever year, they don’t and that’s not what the Academy Awards are.
    David liked the movie. He thinks the Academy will love the movie. Now everyone can stop their annoying blooding whingeing about why Dreamgirls is the frontrunner and just accept it.

  65. Stella's Boy says:

    I have never seen a Russian movie about disabled turtle doves. What is it called and does Blockbuster carry it?

  66. crazycris says:

    disabled turtle doves sounds like a neat idea! but wouldn’t that be more talking animals and aren’t people tired of that? ;o)
    everyone has detractors Dave, don’t let them steal any sleep! It’s nice to read an article on the movie in which you can tell the writer was pretty passionate about it. You manage to transmit the experience quite well to those of us unable to attend said events (am upset ’cause last night’s special screening of Babel was soldout in my theatre, will have to wait another week to see it! grrrr). And you’ve made me for one interested in going to see Dreamgirls, whenever it comes out!
    besides, if I don’t how will I ever be able to discuss wether or not it deserved all those oscars you say it will win? ;o)

  67. bipedalist says:

    It’s so funny how the patterns on this site and the comments go – first there are the people who praise DP’s writing, then te abuse starts flying, DP steps in and argues his point of view, a few mean words are exchanged and eventually everyone comes around to defending DP again! It’s cute I think. Anyway, for the one who said where does Hudson go from here – she reminds me of Rosie Perez from Do the Right Thing, another near amateur who took the world by storm – she had a nice career going playing small parts, and incidentally, she was always good in them. Hudson shows promise as an actress. Singing she’s got, but additionally, she was surprisingly comfortable in front of the camera – didn’t freeze up at all and easily stole the show. Pretty amazing film debut, I’d say. Not perfect, of course, but impressive nonetheless.

  68. EDouglas says:

    If there were awards for blogs, I don’t think Hot Blog would have much competition for “Most Passive/Agressive” … well, except maybe that other blog where everyone here also hangs.
    I think I’m going to start a site where I predict the Blog Awards.

  69. bipedalist says:

    Not a bad idea, Edward. It would be a lot of work, tracking them down, but it seems like there’s a need for it. Especially with the current war between this blog and that other blog. It brings out the mommy in me – come on, boys, don’t FIGHT!

  70. Cadavra says:

    But if Hudson clicks, what’s next? Kellie Pickler in THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE? Bo Bice in MAN OF LA MANCHA? Clay Aiken in FUNNY GIRL?

  71. wongjongat says:

    Kellie Pickler I can see…the other two blech. Constantine and Frenchie from AI have both been on Broadway already, so you never know. If you saw Hudson on AI, you would have seen that she was always confrontational with Simon, and never for once seemed uncomfortable on stage (man, i watch far too much reality tv…)

  72. People need to get over the fact that she’s been on American Idol. She has a better story than somebody who was just “discovered” working as a waitress in Anonymous Smalltown, Ohio.

  73. danpatric says:

    Thank you KamikazeCamelV2.0, can you blame someone for taking advantage of what is an incredible talent to try to make it in the business. Stop hating and listen to this, if you can’t appreciate this, you must be crazy.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=McH134UFbHA

  74. Mongoose says:

    I loved Babel!

  75. CaptainZahn says:

    So, judging from your thoughts on the movie, men with penises are allowed to like Dreamgirls, right, Dave? I just want to make sure. 😉

  76. David Poland says:

    I see the wink, but not 100% clear on the joke… pretty sure gay men have penises… do you mean men with an interest in, as BiPed might want me to call them, front pussies?

  77. David Poland says:

    I do, CZ. But apparently not as well as you.
    Yes, men with penises and men who love penises are both “allowed” to enjoy Dreamgirls.

  78. CaptainZahn says:

    I’m just ribbin’ ya, man.

  79. TMJ says:

    Y’all are mad. It’s THE FOUNTAIN’s award to lose.
    Man, I love that movie…

  80. David Poland says:

    There’s a lot of jaws stuck in TMJ position this time of year…

  81. Blackcloud says:

    Including mine, but they’re always like that. Stupid TMJ. Goes to get some ibuprofen . . .

  82. TMJ says:

    My mouth will hang open if Murphy parlays his 25-year-old James Brown impersonation into a Supporting nod, that’s for sure.

  83. Modern Man says:

    Do the Oscars not serve a vital purpose, so essential to the make-up of American social customs, that if they were to stop or discontinue it may mean complete and utter chaos. Mamet calls the Oscars the last great conduit of small societies for one pure reason. Gossip. Now, gossip has a bad rep. I love it. Only in predicting/discussing the decisions of other communities can wqe begin to look inward and define ourselves. Just something to chew on. I’ll shut up.
    Best Picture Noms: The Fountain, Babel, The Queen, The Departed, Flags of Our Fathers
    For an off the beaten track oscar hopeful check this out.

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon