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Showing posts from November, 2012


I've Seen 898 Movies in 16 Years

Since November of 1996 I have kept a written log of films I've seen in theaters. It's something I've shared with a close few since a) it makes me look like a completely anal retentive film geek and b) it makes me look like a completely anal retentive film geek.

As I write this, I have seen 898 movies. I know what you're thinking: that's a crapload of popcorn. To which I reply: I've also enjoyed many a bag of Skittles.

If you're wondering, my 898th film was Les Miserables. On Saturday afternoon I attended a guild screening of the epic musical at the Mann Chinese 6 in Hollywood (another item to add to my What I'm Thankful For List: industry friends in unions). When the movie's Oscar-winning director, Tom Hooper, introduced the film, he thanked his cast, crew, and friends, one of whom was sitting in the row in front of me -- Helen Mirren. Needless to say, the audience turned their heads in awe and ogled the Academy Award-winning GILF who was sitting w…


The Apocalypse Mixtape: The 2012-13 Winter Playlist

Not only is this my final playlist of the year, it could also be the final playlist -- ever. If those silly Mayans were right, then by all means, let's party and dance until the world comes to its fiery end. Because this season, Santa Claus isn't the only one coming to town. Mr. Fire-and-Brimstone is on his way -- with a big bag of catastrophe.

Here are some tracks that will keep you busy from now until the apocalyptic poo hits the fan on December 21.

It was nice knowing y'all...

1. "I Can't Make You Love Me" by Ester Dean -- It's what you'll be telling your crush right before you see him fall into a pit of fire during those mega earthquakes. Yes, it's a cover of the Bonnie Raitt classic. Sung by the lesbian chick from Pitch Perfect:
2. "Let There Be Love" by Christina Aguilera -- An anthem for all the sinners who'll be raging on when the End comes:
3. "I Found You" by The Wanted -- May these boys forever kick the asses o…


18 Things I'm Thankful For This Week

For my family. For my L.A. family, those who inspire me, support me, and remind me how much love I have in my life. For my health. For my abilities. For Trader Joe's pumpkin pancakes. For Instagram. For the opportunities I've been given. For the motivation I need to go through those open doors. For The Actors Fund. For blessings in disguises. For BBC America. For the chance to hang on to my youth as I stare down my age. For Diddy Riese Cookies. For the luxury that is cable, Internet, and a car. For my Twitter followers. For the Madeon remix of Martin Solveig's "The Night Out." For the food coma I will induce upon myself this Thursday.

For life.

@TheFirstEcho


10 Things I'll Miss in 2013 (If The World Ends Next Month)

Should the Mayan calendar actually end on December 21, 2012 -- along with the rest of the world -- I will miss many of the pleasures that 2013 promises to deliver. Sure, I'll also miss my friends and family, but hey, at least the Apocalypse will help wipe out my student loan debt. Too bad the last installment of The Twilight Saga wasn't scheduled for next year...I would've loved to have seen the countless pissed-off virgins and their overweight mothers cry over never getting to see Edward and Bella kiss for the umpteenth time.

But if those ancient ones were wrong, then I can still look forward to the following (in no particular order)...

1. The Rest of Revenge - Who the hell got killed on Jack's boat in the middle of the ocean? And how in the world does Emily's mother not recognize her? Or does she, and she's just keeping up Emily's charade...?

2. Oz, the Great and Powerful - Because James Franco could squat on the corner of San Vicente and Santa Monica and …


I Was on 'The Ricki Lake Show'

...and apparently there was no way you could miss me in my purple shirt -- which Ricki liked, by the way.

I attended a taping of her "Ambush Makeover" show last month, and it felt as if I had been transported back to 1995 (running home from school, turning on channel 9, chanting "Go Ricki! Go Ricki!"). Who knew, 17 years later, that friendless, Knots Landing-obsessed bookworm from New Rochelle, New York would be standing next to Miss Lake and shooting the shit with her during a commercial break inside the studio of her reincarnated show in sunny Los Angeles?

If you happened to catch Monday's broadcast, you may have spotted me right before they revealed the makeover results in the final segment. And from the looks of it, it seems as if I had inhaled several burritos from Chipotle...along with the entire Chipotle franchise.

I was the only audience member selected by producers to ask a question. I was also one of five males in the audience, so perhaps they were l…


The 10 Greatest Sitcom Theme Songs from the 80s

I still find it reprehensible that today's generation is being robbed of the enjoyment of proper TV sitcom theme songs. Therefore, while going over my iTunes playlist of classic TV jingles I've collected over the years, I couldn't help but climb on board the Nostalgia Express and reminisce about each of the following. What makes them so great is the way they left an indelible mark on a generation, perfectly encapsulating the sensibility and tone of their respective shows.

They truly don't make 'em like they used to...

1. Perfect Strangers - Covering the parallel origin stories of cousin Balki's journey to America and cousin Larry's big move to the big city, this is possibly the most epic (and inspirational) sitcom openings of all time. What network has the time (and budget) to shoot such a grand intro anymore? Apparently none.


2. Who's the Boss? - A perfect track for any romantic comedy, including Christopher Cross-like, easy-listening vocals (courtesy …


Review: Christina Aguilera's 'Lotus'

The album doesn't come out until Tuesday, but I couldn't wait...

First things's first: Perhaps this album should have been called Hubris. Like Christina's past pop contributions, this 17-track disc -- I'm going with the Deluxe Version here -- is an ambitious effort. The girl sure loves to deliver a meaty musical package. Every heavily-produced track is as confident as that questionable album cover. She clearly doesn't give a shit, especially after two colorful decades in the business. Read any current interview of hers, and you'll see that she still prides herself on unabashedly expressing herself no matter what anyone says. It seems as if she gets off on spitting back at her critics, particularly her haters. But one has to ask: Why bother? Why continue to be on the defensive?

Maybe someone should tell Miss Aguilera that subtlety is in. Yes, she has that voice -- and no, I'm not talking about the talent competition show that has redirected the spotligh…


Save the Date for the Apocalypse!

After the pumpkin's been carved,  After the turkey's been cooked,  There's another event, That's about to be booked. 
It's an annual tradition.  It's about that time.  Another silly chance,  For me to break out a rhyme. 
I'm requesting your presence.  You won't want to wait.  All that I'm asking,  Is that you save this special date.
*I was going for a Santa-and-His-Reindeer-meets-The-Four-Horsemen-of-the-Apocalypse theme for my annual holiday cocktail party. That said, let's hope the Mayans were misinformed. My grandmother's 91st birthday is on December 21, and that would suck if the earth exploded before she got to blow out her candles.

@TheFirstEcho