When Rebel Wilson first revealed her weight loss, she also revealed her motivations. One of them was that she thought her weight was preventing her from getting serious roles. I’m not saying that I don’t believe this was true but it did surprise me that she then went on to make Senior Year. I mean she was playing another version of the same character she always plays but this time with a different body shape. If she seriously wanted more dramatic roles, how is this film going to help her image as an actor? Nobody was likely to see this and think “yes, that’s the person I want in my Oscar-bait drama film”. Of course, it doesn’t matter but I found it interesting. Whatever the reason, Wilson looks great now and I think she looked great before.
There are a lot of British comedians who I would love to see live. One of them is Tom Allen. I think he’s amazingly funny and I enjoy seeing him appear on various TV shows. It also makes me feel slightly better about living at home that he’s only just moved into his own house! When this came up on Audible, I knew that I had to get it. Then I stumbled across a hardback copy in a charity shop and it seemed like something or someone was telling me to read it. I was meant to be reviewing my current read today but, thanks to my inability to read much, I knew I wasn’t going to manage it. I decided it was a good time to listen to the audiobook while I was working.
Once again, I find myself running out of time. I’m writing this way later than I should be and rushing to get it finished. It doesn’t help that I really don’t know what to say about this film. Sometimes you can watch/read something and it just doesn’t leave much of an impression either way. It’s not so horrendous that you can rant about it or so good that you’re gushing praise. This is a film that I first watched at university a long time ago. It was really hyped up beforehand, so it never really lived up. It’s not one that I rewatch very often but I will give it a go every now and then. This seemed like a good week to do so.
After Groundhog Day, I always wondered why people tried to keep making comedy time loop films. Once you’ve found something so perfect what do you expect to add? It’s always the same thing anyway. We see people experience grisly deaths, drink, take wild risks, and fill the time as best they can. It’s not like there’s been an awful lot of originality. That doesn’t seem to stop anyone trying to do something new. Last year, Andy Samberg and Cristin Milioti starred in the latest attempt and, in another great example of unoriginality, it centres around a wedding. I knew that the reviews for this had been good but, I have to admit, I wasn’t exactly overjoyed by that concept. Still, Samberg is a great performer. He may not have written this but I had to believe that he wouldn’t sign on to do any old shit.
Do you ever bother with signed editions? I’m not talking about being lucky enough to meet an author in person and getting them to sign it. I’m talking about those books that are already signed and, most likely, cost a little bit more than the usual hardback. I try not to care and will normally only bother with signed books by authors I really love. Of course, there may be an occasion when the signed edition is cheaper on Waterstones than the unsigned. In that case, I’ll definitely go for it but, really, I don’t see the point. If it’s not personalised, it’s just a bit meaningless, right? It’s not as I expect them to become investment pieces that I’ll hand down to my children. Nor am I showing them off to everyone I know. The signature is just a thing that exists and makes very little difference to my life. Why am I banging on about this? I pre-ordered the hardback signed copy of Come Again but it has sat on my shelf since April 2020. I do this all the time and I don’t know why I never learn. I am so desperate to get certain signed editions but then let them languish on my shelf. I definitely have a problem.
When watching Hubie Halloween last weekend, it was hard not to compare the character to other Adam Sandler characters. I mean Hubie is basically Little Nicky but without the religious aspect. Does it help that both films are directed by Steven Brill? Probably not but it does raise questions about just how long Sandler can keep going. I mean, he’s barely evolved since the start of his career and that would be fine if this latest film didn’t feel like such a throwback. And I know. Uncut Gems but he didn’t write that. Just look as his other Netflix films. Murder Mystery? The Ridiculous 6. How long can he keep churning out the same tired comedy films?
I have to admit to something, I never got round to watching Uncut Gems. Phew, that’s a weight off my chest. At the time that it was really doing the rounds, I was desperately trying to watch all of the Oscar nominated films and, unfortunately, it was totally ignored by the Academy. I always intended to catch up but it never happened. Not because I didn’t think it would be good but because it just seemed so heavy. I mean this year is heavy enough. The reason I bring it up is because Uncut Gems could very well be the reason that Hubie Halloween exists. Before awards season kicked off, Sandler made a vow that he would make the worst film possible if he wasn’t nominated for an Oscar. 10 months on and another Netflix original hits us. So, was it really going to be the worst of his vast and often uninspiring career? There was only one way to find out.
You’ll no doubt have heard a lot about the second Borat film in the last few days. Mostly because of the outrage about a scene involving Rudy Giuliani and President Donald Trump’s reaction to it. The President has criticised Sacha Baron Cohen and described him as a “creep”. Of course, this will have done nothing but draw even more attention to the film. Not that it would have needed the help. It’s been nearly 15 years since the first film came out and we were all under the impression that Borat was never going to be seen again. After all, how do you make another Borat film when everyone is in on the joke now? Well, they obviously got round that somehow and, with the film being released on Amazon Prime last week, I had to check it out.
Do you know what we don’t talk about enough? Robert Downey Jr. was nominated for an Oscar for using blackface. Now I don’t necessarily want to criticise Robert Downey Jr or the film itself. I also don’t necessarily want to give it a pass either. I just think the fact that the academy thought it was Oscar-worthy is a bit weird, right? I mean, how often do they nominate a comic performance for anything? Then they pick the one where a white dude is acting like a Black dude? I find it weird. In terms of the film, I get what RDJ and Ben Stiller were getting at. It’s the lengths that actors go to fully immerse themselves into a role. Officially, RDJ is in blackface but it’s more complicated than that. The character isn’t a Black man but a white actor playing a Black character. I guess you can argue that it raises questions and adds to the conversation. At least more than something like Little Britain did. But, at the same time, you have to ask if nominating the actor for an Oscar legitimises the practice more. Instead of just being a humorous footnote in history.
I used to listen to Brett Goldstein’s Films To Be Buried With podcast when I was working. For those who haven’t listened to it, each episode was based around a series of film question that Brett put to his guest. It included the question “what is the funniest film ever?” Comedy is one of those genres that is so subjective, which is perhaps the reason why comedy films don’t have the same lasting appeal as dramas. Some comedies do have staying power but funny films tend to age quicker than straight films. There are only a handful of really important classic comedy films, so most people answering this question would pick more contemporary ones. Of course, the one major exception is This Is Spinal Tap. It was the film that was picked most often in this category. So, is Spinal Tap really the funniest film ever made?