Tag Archives: Ricky Gervais

Good show

Did you spy the lucky Brits chosen to participate in the London Olympics Opening Ceremonies?

Ewan McGregor. Kate Winslet. J.K. Rowling. Daniel Craig. Mr. Bean. Sirs Paul McCarthy and Kenneth Branagh…and the Queen herself, of course.

But what about the loyal subjects who got snubbed?

Mashable.com writer  Annie Colbert highlights 10 notable no-shows in director Danny Boyle’s epic extravaganza.

Ricky Gervais. Wallace and Grommit. Ask.com’s Jeeves. Pseudo-Brit Madonna.  And what about Robert Pattinson?

He could have really used the attention this week.

While I see the logic behind Annie’s picks, I think she missed the most obvious omission in Boyle’s Olympic costume drama —

The cast of Downton Abbey.

They were dressed and ready and waiting for their cue.  Seems like a misstep to me.

Just saying.

 

 

Ah ha

Remember this year’s Golden Globe Awards?

Hard to believe they were less than a month ago.  Modern Family, Boardwalk Empire and The Social Network were the big winners, and Ricky Gervais — with his mean-spirited, low blow jokes — was the biggest loser.

Memories.

My ‘ah ha’ moment — or maybe it was more of a ‘say wha?’ — was Paul Giamatti’s win for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy for a little-known movie called Barney’s Version (He beat out Kevin Spacey, Jake Gyllenhaal and two Johnny Depp nods in the process.)

So I decided to give it a look.

Here’s one thing the Hollywood Foreign Press got right.  Giamatti is brilliant as Barney in a movie that spans four decades of his life, three marriages, and literally dozens of bad decisions.  Whoever cast Dustin Hoffman as Barney’s father must be feeling pretty smug, too, because it was nothing short of inspired.

You can make fun of the Globes all day long and be perfectly justified.  But that award alone, and the light it shone on this funny, sad, twisted, lovely film, atones for a multitude of sins.

If Barney’s Version hadn’t won a Globe, it would have no doubt languished on a couple of screens in New York and Los Angeles before calling it a day. Thanks to the Globes, you may get a chance to see it at a ‘theater near you.’

Everybody wins.

Watch and win

If you love all things shallow — as we do here at The Sticky Egg — plump up your couch cushions and get comfy.

Shallowness is being serenaded, crowned and presented with sparkly awards this weekend on TV.

It begins Saturday night with the 2011 Miss America pageant — LIVE from Vegas! — and wraps up on Sunday with the ever-entertaining Golden Globe Awards, hosted by Ricky Gervais.

If you think about it, these two programs are a lot alike.

Both get their fair share of criticism.  Miss America because it’s a pageant, which many feel is an antiquated idea in this day and age with its swimsuit competition that displays the contestants’ “good health and fitness.”

And then, the Golden Globes, whose nominees are voted in by the Hollywood Foreign Press, which consistently selects those actors and projects who launch the most effective (translation: swaggeriffic) campaign.

Both programs also seem a bit dated.  Miss America‘s production values have always been a tad behind the times — far less glitzy and polished than the Donald Trump-produced Miss USA and Miss Universe.  And the Golden Globes still features a sit-down dinner at their show, which most other awards have abandoned due to the danger of mixing celebrities, alcohol and live television.

Personally, I’ve always found the folksiness of the Miss America broadcast to be part of its charm.  I like making fun of the contestants and the show.

If it gets too slick, where’s the funny in that?

Same goes for the Golden Globes.  The stars drinking at the show practically guarantees that something is going to go wrong on live television, which is way more interesting than the overly-produced Oscars.

So, pull up a chair — or your DVR — and watch all the beauty queens and movie stars put themselves out there for crowns and trophies.  There will be tears.  There will be joy.

And there’s bound to be a bobble or two — do you really want to miss that??

Golden egg

Golden Globe Awards – thank god you’ve arrived!

After a week filled with human drama — both real and manufactured — a big ol’ dose of Ricky Gervais and drunk celebrities will be a welcome distraction.

The ceremony is this Sunday evening on NBC, and The Egg brings  sticky predictions on who will be giving those always embarrassing, often semi-coherent acceptance speeches while clutching their trophies.

BEST MOTION PICTURE, DRAMA

• Avatar
• The Hurt Locker
• Inglourious Basterds
• Precious
Up in the Air

Original, authentic, and grounded — forgive the pun — in the realities of the day, Up in the Air deserves every accolade.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE, DRAMA

• Emily Blunt, The Young Victoria
Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side
• Helen Mirren, The Last Station
• Carey Mulligan, An Education
• Gabourey Sidibe, Precious

Hollywood Foreign Press, finally reward American’s favorite girl next door.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE, DRAMA

• Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
George Clooney, Up in the Air
• Colin Firth, A Single Man
• Morgan Freeman, Invictus
• Tobey Maguire, Brothers

To give the award to Jeff Bridges would be too Mickey Rourke too soon. George Clooney deserves it and will win it.

BEST MOTION PICTURE, COMEDY OR MUSICAL

(500) Days of Summer
• The Hangover
• It’s Complicated
• Julie & Julia
• Nine

The movie that redefined a category deserves the nod.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MOTION PICTURE, COMEDY OR MUSICAL

• Sandra Bullock, The Proposal
• Marion Cotillard, Nine
• Julia Roberts, Duplicity
• Meryl Streep, It’s Complicated
Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia

Resistance is futile.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MOTION PICTURE, COMEDY OR MUSICAL

Matt Damon, The Informant!
• Daniel Day-Lewis, Nine
• Robert Downey Jr., Sherlock Holmes
• Joseph Gordon-Levitt, (500) Days of Summer
• Michael Stuhlbarg, A Serious Man

And Matt had better thank his wig in the acceptance speech, too.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM

• Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs
• Coraline
• Fantastic Mr. Fox
• The Princess and the Frog
Up

Truth?  Didn’t see any of them.  But Up had the best trailer.

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

• Baaria (Italy)
• Broken Embraces (Spain)
• The Maid (Chile)
• A Prophet (France)
The White Ribbon (Germany)

Truth?  I saw the trailer for The White Ribbon…that’s all I got.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MOTION PICTURE

Penélope Cruz, Nine
• Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air
• Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air
• Mo’Nique, Precious
• Julianne Moore, A Single Man

Even though Nine got panned, the Hollywood Foreign Press loves that Penelope.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A MOTION PICTURE

• Matt Damon, Invictus
• Woody Harrelson, The Messenger
• Christopher Plummer, The Last Station
• Stanley Tucci, The Lovely Bones
Christopher, Waltz, Inglourious Basterds

If Stanley Tucci had been nominated for Julie & Julia, my vote would be different.

BEST DIRECTOR

• Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
• James Cameron, Avatar
• Clint Eastwood, Invictus
Jason Reitman, Up in the Air
• Quentin Tarantino, Inglourious Basterds

I hate when the movie wins and the director doesn’t…

BEST SCREENPLAY

• Neill Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell, District 9
• Mark Boal, The Hurt Locker
• Nancy Meyers, It’s Complicated
• Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner, Up in the Air
Quentin Tarantino, Inglourious Basterds

He’s not my favorite, but the Globes will throw him a bone.

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE

Michael Giacchino, Up
• Marvin Hamlisch, The Informant!
• James Horner, Avatar
• Abel Korzeniowski, A Single Man
• Karen O and Carter Burwell, Where the Wild Things Are

All that floating was accompanied by some cool tunes.

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

• “Cinema Italiano,” Music & Lyrics by Maury Yeston (Nine)
• “I Want to Come Home,” Music & Lyrics by Paul McCartney (Everybody’s Fine)
• “I Will See You,” Music by James Horner, Simon Franglen; Lyrics by James Horner, Simon Franglen and Kuk Harrell (Avatar)
• “The Weary Kind,” Music & Lyrics by Ryan Bingham and T Bone Burnett (Crazy Heart)

• “Winter,” Music by U2; Lyrics by Bono (Brothers)

Give the music movie the Globe for best song.

BEST TELEVISION SERIES, DRAMA

• Big Love
• Dexter
• House
• Mad Men
True Blood

Go vamps, go vamps, go, go, go vamps.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION SERIES, DRAMA

• Glenn Close, Damages
• January Jones, Mad Men
• Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Anna Paquin, True Blood
• Kyra Sedgwick, The Closer

Anna will repeat.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A TELEVISION SERIES, DRAMA

• Simon Baker, The Mentalist
• Michael C. Hall, Dexter
• Jon Hamm, Mad Men
• Hugh Laurie, House
Bill Paxton, Big Love

The newbie to the category will win.

BEST TELEVISION SERIES, COMEDY OR MUSICAL

• 30 Rock
• Entourage
Glee
• Modern Family
• The Office

The newbie to the category will win.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION SERIES, COMEDY OR MUSICAL

• Toni Collette, United States of Tara
Courteney Cox, Cougar Town
• Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie
• Tina Fey, 30 Rock
• Lea Michele, Glee

She’s a newbie to the category as well, but a well-known friend.  The Hollywood Foreign Press can’t wait to give her the Globe.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A TELEVISION SERIES, COMEDY OR MUSICAL

Alec Baldwin, 30 Rock
• Steve Carell, The Office
• David Duchovny, Californication
• Thomas Jane, Hung
• Matthew Morrison, Glee

No one can take the Globe away from Alec Baldwin. He’s that good.

BEST MINISERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION

• Georgia O’Keefe
• Grey
Gardens
• Into the Storm
Little Dorrit
• Taking Chance

Little Dorrit has already won the Emmy, and it was spectacular.  It will win the Globe.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION

• Joan Allen, Georgia O’Keefe
• Drew Barrymore, Grey Gardens
• Jessica Lange, Grey Gardens
• Anna Paquin, The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler
Sigourney Weaver, Prayers for Bobby

Jessica and Drew will split the Grey Gardens vote, and the equally wonderful Sigourney Weaver will take the prize.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION

Kevin Bacon, Taking Chance
• Kenneth Branagh, Wallander: One Step Behind
• Chiewetel Ejiofor, Endgame
• Brendan Gleeson, Into the Storm
• Jeremy Irons, Georgia O’Keefe

Kevin Bacon deserves it and will win it.  And I will get over his being passed over for so many other nods.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A SERIES, MINISERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION

• Jane Adams, Hung
• Rose Byrne, Damages
• Jane Lynch, Glee
• Janet McTeer, Into the Storm
Chloë Sevigny, Big Love

Newbies, it’s a honor just to be nominated.  This is Chloe’s award.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE IN A SERIES, MINISERIES OR MOTION PICTURE MADE FOR TELEVISION

• Michael Emerson, Lost
• Neil Patrick Harris, How I Met Your Mother
• William Hurt, Damages
John Lithgow, Dexter
• Jeremy Piven, Entourage

NPH, you deserve it.  You’ve earned it.  But John Lithgow was nominated, and he always wins, dag nab it.

Enjoy the Globes, everyone!  Ricky Gervais is a train wreck of the very best kind.

Here comes trouble

The award shows of late have earned ratings gains and critical and audience acclaim by casting multi-talented showmen as their hosts.  Neil Patrick Harris charmed everyone at this year’s Emmy and Tony Awards, and Hugh Jackman is rumored to repeat his world-class performance at next year’s Oscars.

And now the Golden Globes, which hasn’t used an actual host since the 1980’s, is following their lead by casting as its host…Ricky Gervais.

Say wha??

Don’t get me wrong.  Ricky Gervais is funny.  He has had some hilarious turns as an awards presenter on the Emmys and Oscars.  I particularly liked his observation at this year’s Emmy Awards:

“The thing about the Oscars and the Golden Globes is they’ve got film stars there, with their jawlines and chiseled looks, making me feel bad. But in this room – I’m not being funny – I’m probably above average. Here, Steve Carell is considered handsome. But Rainn Wilson, we’ve got to be honest… he’s weird, even in this company.”

Funny stuff.  And typical for Gervais.  He is great in small doses, and even then, someone is gonna get poked at.  Or slammed.  Or totally offended.

I am also reminded of Gervais’ turn at the austim benefit held just up the street from me at the Beacon Theatre in New York City’s Upper West Side.  Jon Stewart hosted the evening, and Gervais entertained for a few minutes, where he pretty much dissed the people they had gathered to support.  It was funny, but in a very uncomfortable way.  I’m sure everyone was glad he was simply featured, and not hosting…’cause they could get him off the stage.

Charm is one of the most essential elements of a successful awards show host, but it’s not a word I associate with Gervais.  Charm not only broadens an award show host’s appeal, but it also saves him when things go awry.  Let’s face it — not every joke or bit is going to go as planned, and a quick-witted, charming line can save the day.  (Google “Neil Patrick Harris Tony Awards Brett Michaels”.)

Of course, the Golden Globes are the rebels of the televised awards, so in that respect Gervais is a perfect fit.  But I think the producers have to remember — no matter how ‘hip’ the Globes think they are, they are playing to the same audience.

So if Gervais has his own ‘Uma Oprah’ moment, I promise not to say “I told you so.”

(I’ll think of something more original.)

One man’s lie…

You might expect the trailers for a movie called “The Invention of Lying” to skirt the truth a bit.  And boy, do they.

The movie is about the first man who ever lied…and how his subsequent lies changed his life and the lives of his family, friends and ultimately, the world.

But the marketing campaign leaves out a lot. While the promos do portray the movie as a comedy — and rightly so — “The Invention of Lying” is also quite poignant at times.  This is a rather dramatic role for Ricky Gervais, and he performs it beautifully. Who knew such a sarcastic so-and-so had such range?

There are also dozens of amazing celebrity cameos that made me laugh aloud in surprise.  (I will point out that at these moments, my laugh was often the only one you heard in the theater; I guess I’m better at spotting a cameo than some.)

Perhaps the biggest omission from the trailers is the subject matter of the lies that Gervais’ character tells.  That was a very smart move.  If they had revealed this information in the marketing, a substantial chunk of the potential audience might have stayed away.  This way, they’ll already be in the audience and in a good mood when it’s revealed.  And hopefully, they won’t feel judged.

So, while I am often annoyed when movie marketing gives you the wrong impression about a film — for example, when movies like “The Family Stone” come off like feel-good comedies in the promos and then spring cancer on you — I applaud “The Invention of Lying” for holding back.

It’s a great film.  It’s funny and smart and surprising and actually makes you think.  And thanks to the marketing, a whole lot more people will see it.

(The preceding message is true.)