Hey, Paulington! Is a Cinephile advice column that looks at life, love, and the movies. Anyone can send in a question, and Paulington will answer it. Sure, it's a really cryptic, cliched concept that has been around since the dawn of time. But we're spicing it up a little bit. Topics can range from anything: Sex, violence, haints and taints, your favorite movie! Paulington doesn't care. He's basically doing it for a paycheck. He's not really an expert on anything. But he sure does know a lot about movies and human nature. You can send your questions to (as in, click on the giant red letters and you will automatically be sent to his email):
And he will be sure to answer all of them in a very timely manner. Here are this week's letters. Enjoy!
I am so sick of all things 3-D! What can I do to make it all stop? Signed, "2-D Mistro"
Dear Mistro. There is nothing you can do but sit and wait for this tide to wash over us like a hot drip of ash fire, ready to consume an unsuspecting mountainside home. It's either that, or shoot yourself in the face. Every single film on Hollywood's upcoming roaster is scheduled to be shot in 3D. Every aspiring name brand filmmaker wants to shoot in 3D. Jon Favreau recently announced that Iron Man 2, while not shot in 3D, is being converted to 3D. (Which always looks kind of shitty, but the technology is getting better.) Steven Soderbergh also announced that he wants to shoot the first ever drama in 3D. Guess what else happened? Both Sony and Panasonic announced that HD 3D is coming to home entertainment in 2010 (which makes all those new plasma screens and Blu-ray players you plopped tons of money down for obsolete). Hollywood has 3D on the brain right now, and if you don't like it, that's okay. A lot of theaters haven't converted over properly, and a lot of our 3D films are still being shown in a flat aspect ratio. Grab this option while you can, because producers are pushing hard to have it eliminated. Soon, every new movie and TV show will be shot in 3D. Yes, that's right. You can now sit on your couch and experience Adrian Brody's nose poking you in the ribs as it dribbles snot down onto your velour. We are truly living in the future. Being an optimist, you need only look to the 50s and 80s, both decades where 3D was very popular. It didn't last long then. Maybe it's re-trending, and won't last long now. It all depends on that mighty box office dollar. So what if 3D's the equivalent of Navin Johnson's eyeglass support system? Sure to give you a headache and make you cross-eyed. 3D is about two things? One, it allows both the studio and the theater to charge a higher ticket price. Why? Because, as they make you fully aware, all this new equipment cost them a pretty penny! The only way they will recoup that money is from the consumer, so you get charged anywhere from five to ten dollars more. All this so a severed head can land lifelike in your lap. It's also about eliminating street corner bootlegs. But those dudes will catch up soon enough, especially once home-schooled 3D makes its way into our living room. You can't keep a good thief down. However you roll it, 3D isn't going away any time soon. So buy yourself some aspirin and shut the fuck up about it. Or become a director and make a traditional 2D picture. You drooling caveman, you.
My Blu-Ray collection is growing quiet massive. The things look amazing on my HD screen. Only problem is, I feel really crappy inside when I have to suffer through a DVD version of anything these days. I feel like I'm cheating on the glitzier fancier flicks which now overwhelm my collection. When will DVD be gone for good and EVERYTHING, including all TV shows, be in Hi-Def? Signed, "Hi-Def Maybe"
Dear Maybe. The answer is quite simply: NEVER! The gods of technology are simply trying to satiate your nimble brain with Hi-Def. They are keeping you dumb and hot. Hi-Def is a distraction put in place to drain you of cash and keep you busy until the next thing comes along. Sure, your Blu-ray discs look crisp and clean like a wet head of lettuce compared to those crappy, grainy, District 11 DVDs you currently have in the closet (seriously, dude, just throw them away). As soon as this horrible consumer corporation sees that they've squeezed all the money out of you they can, they will gently ease you into the next thing. Which is already coming on like a runaway freight train. Yes. All of your precious plasma screens and Blu-ray players will be obsolete by the start of 2011. Damn, that was quick, but, as I mentioned in the letter above, both Sony and Panasonic, in an attempt to beat each other black and blue, are rushing to be the first on the market with a Hi-Def 3D home theater system. About everything being in Hi-Def? Won't happen. Just look at the Ghostbusters [Blu-ray]. It's a grainy mess. Why? Because the film stock in storage is old and torn, and shot on real 35mm film. A lot of popular films are showing their wear in this digital age, and there's not a whole lot your Blu-ray machine can do about it. Same goes for TV. Most series leading up to the early Aughts were not shot in Hi-Def, and simply can't be converted. So sorry, but you'll never be able to watch The Brady Bunch in finite detail. There will be no-jerking it to Marsha's nose pores. As far as everything being released on Blu-ray? Well, just look at DVDs for an answer to this. You'll get all new releases. Sure. But the old titles are being dolled out as slowly as they were the first time around. DVDs started appearing on store shelves in 1998. Its 2009. 11 years later. And we still don't have Raggedy Ann & Andy: A Musical Adventure or Blood Beach in our back catalogue of DVDs. What the heck? Its true. They will have you buying shit up until the moment you die. And then, your dead corpse will be shoved into a landfill with a bunch of shiny plastic. Your grandkids aren't going to want this garbage pile you've collected. You fucking landfill schemer. They'll have digital injections and tiny Jolly Rancher-sized cubes that hold over 10,000 movies and TV shows. I guess, what I am saying to you is, you've fallen into a never-ending hole and you'll never get out. My question is: When will the guys at the Green Walmart start carrying Blu-ray bootlegs? Anyone? Uh? Please? I need my inner tube inner-theater recordings in Hi-Def. NOW.
What the heck is going on with Saturday Night Live this season? Who did they fire and whom did they hire? And why the heck did they get rid of Michaela Watkins? She was hilarious. What should I know about these new guys coming in? Are they even funny? I fucking doubt it. Signed, "Saturday Stroller"
Dear Stroller. It's the same old shit. They've been firing awesome people from SNL since the dawn of the 70s. And hiring new hacks to back up their decision. Is this year any different? Maybe, maybe not. Saturday Night Live is a show that needs constant energy pumped into it. And that is done by adding new talent. When new talent comes in, some of the old folks have to go. Norm McDonald was fired from SNL. So was Dave Koechner. And they are both pretty funny. The only thing I can tell you is: Trust in Lorne Michaels. He knows talent people when he sees them. And is on the nose with his hiring most of the time (except, maybe in the case of Kenan Thompson). There is a great interview with Michaela Watkins at The Ausiello Files which explains why she was axed. Lorne thought she needed her own show. Again, maybe. Maybe not. But the firing doesn't seem unjustified. Or cruel. Hopefully, this move will push Michaela into a new project that will blow the loose skin off old ladies' faces. Female cast mate Casey Wilson has also been cut from the show. Why? Some say she refused to lose thirty pounds. Others say its because she didn't create a memorable character in the two years she was there. Casey, herself, states that, maybe its because she looks like Patton Oswalt. Either way, we're losing two very talented women. But I am sure we will see more of them in the future (seriously, why didn't they fire Kenan Thompson instead?). Now, whom did they hire? Casey and Michaela were replaced by two other pretty ladies: Kelly Slate (a brawler) and Nasim Pedrad (the home town hero). Here are their stats: "Pedrad is native to Iran, graduated from a Los Angeles improvisation group called The Groundlings. In 2007, she starred in her own Las Vegas one-woman show titled "Me, Myself, and Iran." Pedrad also played on the show ER as nurse Suri. Slate made her way onto the comedy scene via the Upright Citizens Brigade in New York City. Her show at UCB was called "Dead Millionaire." You can check out the new chicks when Saturday Night Live returns September 26th with host Megan Fox. Will Fox be funny? God, lets hope so.
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Hope you have a great week! See you next time. (If you click on the big red letters, you will be taken to an email address where you will be able to leave your questions.)