Letting Yourself Go in Hollywood

I just watched the 2006 movie The Break Up.  It's definitely a stretch to call this a B- movie.  It has some alluring thread that made me want to watch it to the end.  Maybe that thread was boredom.

Anyway, what really struck me about this movie is how much Vince Vaughn had let himself go since Swingers just ten years before.  And how much Aniston, in the same amount of time, well, really hadn't.

Look at that strapping young man on the left (Vaughn in Swingers, '96)---and can you talk about about BLOAT? (The Break -Up, '06)

Looking, well, pretty damn good in 1996
as well as 2006.
In the movie The Break-Up we have 'hot couple with issues'.  Except that the male half of this hot couple is debatably not-so very-hot in that he's about 20 pounds overweight.  He spends his time laying on the couch playing video games and eating and watching sports and his hot, skinny girlfriend (thigh gap, zero loose tricep skin) works her ass off putting together dinner parties and doting on him, which includes laying out his outfits at night before he goes to bed.  (Are you sure this is a couple and not a mother-son situation?).  Granted they do break up, but the movie causes one to wonder what even brought them together in the first place--given that she had such a hard time leaving him it seems to be some sort of a "she settled in order to receive the security and respect a relationship gives a woman and he wanted a hot woman to fuck" situation.

In addition to the unbelievable message that the movie sends about relationships, the juxtaposition of the bodies of Aniston and Vaughn makes me examine their Hollywood careers.

They both have been hugely successful in both the 90s and the first decade of the 2000s.  Also in this time Vaughn put on tons of weight and Aniston did not.  Aniston must have had to work her ass off, in fact, to keep her body over their period of time, as you can see from the arm muscle in the picture to the left.

Hollywood, according to this example anyway, is a world in which men get to lay on the couch binging on flank steak and then STAR IN BLOCKBUSTER FILMS, while the women need to hit the gym, perpetually diet and essentially reverse the aging process in order to perform at the same level.

The only rationale for such a double standard is that, of course, in the movies, it's all about what men want to be seeing (while they're sitting on the couch like beached whales).  Ugh.


Living in a Man's World

Today I watched The Wenners on Charlie Rose--founder of Rolling Stone Magazine Jann and his son Gus--and it left me speculating to what extent we're living in man's world; that is to say evaluating and critiquing culture through a man's spectrum.

Here are all of the Rolling Stone images Charlie Rose called out on his show, as some of the most celebratory and laudable covers.  



Christian Caricatures

Today I watched some of the movies Christian Mingle and Inlawfully Yours, and found it disconcerting that way Christians are depicted in each of them.

In Christian Mingle the mother of the main character's love interest is a heavily make-uped, regularly dressed to the 7s (not quite the nines but with heels, etc.) woman with free flowing sandy blonde hair.  She's a devout Christian who pushes her weight around in the family, including telling her son that there's something off or insincere about the woman he's dating, and takes trips to Mexico to condescend to the impoverished Mexicans, reading to them from 1 Corinthians about God's love.

Inlawfully Yours depicts the same staid, pillar-of-the-community married women.  In this movie she perhaps isn't so attractive, but continues to push her weight around; in this instance she's on a board at the Church and advises the preacher on how to conduct services.  She also monitors him while he's out on a date, making sure that there isn't any physical interaction between the couple.


Ode to Groundhog Day

"It's inspiring to see a man of advancing years
 throwing caution to the wind" LOVE this scene!
Flashback to this oh-so-wonderful movie from 1993.

In addition to a clever story, a hilarious screenplay and a cast that includes the beloved BILL MURRAY!!! Andie MacDowell and Stephen Tobolowsky, this movie is also under two hours long!

One characteristic of Groundhog Day that I find especially unusual is it's appeal to a broad
Stephen Tobolowsky's unforgettable role as Ned Ryerson
audience.  And I mean BROAD.  As a twelve year old girl, I was so thrilled with this movie when it came out that I watched it twice in the theaters in the same weekend.  Comedian Mike Schmidt has mentioned on his podcast The 40 Year Old Boy that this movie is perfect!

How often to you find a movie that a nearly fifty year old man and a twelve year old girl LOVE?


And I'm just gonna end with the cliche that they don't make 'em like they used to.  


Brigitte Macron & French Electibility

I was just amazed to learn a few days ago that the wife of France's new President is in fact 24 years old than he, and that they met and fell in love when he was only 15.

In addition to being very unusual, the marriage seems to be a factor that could easily preclude electability.  Generally, I mean to say, a political figure needs to exude an aura of normalcy; and a traditional marriage (where the spouses are much closer in age) would be part and parcel to his/her public image.

I wondered if this attitude I have towards traditional marriage and family and electability is a US-centric idea, and prompted me to do a little research.

Only one bachelor has ever been elected US President (James Buchanan), and every other president has been married--four of them were widowers when elected (Andrew Jackson was a widower when inaugurated, but not when elected).  Additionally, only two US presidents have been divorced (Trump twice, and Reagan once).  So yes, generally speaking, US presidents present a VERY traditional family front.