News

The Scum of the Earth

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Are we accustomed to the idea that there is no meritocracy? And that celebrities who pay to put their underachieving influencer kids in colleges where they don’t belong are a normal thing we have to deal with now?

No, because these people committed felonies:

Actress Lori Loughlin appeared in Los Angeles federal court Wednesday afternoon, following her arrest for involvement in what authorities say is the largest college admission scam in the United States. The actress has been charged with allegedly funnelling $500,000 to rowing coaches at the University of Southern California in order to secure admission to the elite school for her two daughters, Isabella and Olivia, also known as the YouTube influencer Olivia Jade. 

According to court documents published by Buzzfeed News, Loughlin’s bribe allowed for both girls to be accepted as rowing recruits, despite the fact that neither teenager plays crew. Loughlin’s husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, also named among the 50 individuals charged in the indictment, appeared in court Tuesday.

If you want to bring back the guillotine, I would caution you that what follows probably isn’t that great. I like your enthusiasm and energy, and I think you have a lot of spunk, but you need to tone it down a bit. I do think that the end result of all of this should be a lot of mockery, jail time, and restitution:

Even Loughlin’s daughters are starting to feel the social hurt of the scandal. On Tuesday, TMZ reported that Loughlin’s influencer daughter, Olivia Jade, had spent the night before her mother’s arrest on a yacht in the Bahamas owned by Chairman of USC's Board of Trustees Rick Caruso. On Wednesday afternoon, just as  Loughlin prepared to leave federal court on bail, she had “decided it would be in her best interests to return home” and left Caruso’s yacht, he told TMZ. 

She may be facing more than just her mother's indictment, however. Late Wednesday, USC issued a statement announcing plans to “conduct a case-by-case review for current students and graduates that may be connected to the scheme alleged by the government.”

Yeah, that’s totally normal. I would be willing to bet you that she wasn’t the only privileged kid forced to leave a cruise on a yacht because one or both parents were arrested by the FBI on just any old day of the week.

It’s time to accept the fact that hard work and talent mean nothing in this country. We are no different than the British, the French, or the Germans. Who you are and where you are in this life are largely determined by what your parents do for a living. If you were born of the right stock, go ahead and get high on your own stash and pretend to be able to function in polite society. If not, get ready to pound sand. You can work hard your whole life and you’re never going to have anything remotely similar to what the chinless failson of a billionaire will be handed. The quicker we figure out that the only decent people in this country are the ones who are white, sexually deviant, and wealthy, the better. Everyone else is a perpetrator, a serf, or a basic poor.

Thank God we’re not in the middle of a real shooting war. I would hate to see what the cannon fodder would look like. Probably a lot of stressed out kids who could only get into State universities.

What a Wonderful Bag of Nuts Olivia Colman Is

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Olivia Colman is going to get a lot of attention from now on, if only because her stream-of-consciousness reaction to being given awards is so highly entertaining as to perhaps eclipse the very excellent work she does in films.

Her resume is incredibly impressive, and she is one of the hardest working actresses in the world. She even appeared in the original version of the Office! The attention she is getting is overdue.

Meg Ryan

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The New York Times magazine has an incredible and detailed piece about Meg Ryan, and where she is at today.

From the late ’80s through the ’90s, Meg Ryan shone about as brightly as any star in Hollywood. You know about her beloved string of romantic comedies — often written by Nora Ephron, often co-starring Tom Hanks. Less well remembered are her dramatic turns in the same era’s “When a Man Loves a Woman,” “City of Angels” and “Courage Under Fire,” all of which were commercial successes. But the harsh reaction to her 2003 erotic thriller, “In the Cut,” a critical and box-office flop that was widely seen as a failed attempt to complicate her winsome image, as well as her growing frustration with fame, compelled her to step into a less public, far happier life. “I wasn’t as curious about acting as I was about other things that life can give you,” says Ryan, 57. She quietly made her directorial debut in 2015 with the World War II-era drama “Ithaca,” and last November, she became engaged to the musician John Mellencamp. “I wanted,” she says, “to live more.”

Actors often talk about how their roles let them explore feelings that they might not otherwise explore. In the time since you began acting less, have you had to adjust how you process emotions? I felt in a crazy way that, as an actor, I was burning through life experiences. Somehow I was a helicopter pilot or a journalist or an alcoholic. I was living these express-lane lives. I’m not answering your question.

Did you feel as if you hit a wall by burning through all those experiences? Or the blunter way of asking the question is: Where’d you go? My son, Jack, graduated from high school on a Friday or Saturday. I moved back to New York from Los Angeles on the following Monday. I was burned out. I didn’t feel like I knew enough anymore about myself or the world to reflect it as an actor. I felt isolated.

In Hollywood or in fame? In fame and in work. Ever get in a car — maybe it’s a superexpensive car — and the inside’s lovely, you can’t complain about it, but you can’t hear anything outside, because there’s so much metal? There’s so much between you and everything else. You’re at a disadvantage as a young, famous person because you don’t know who’s telling you the truth. I’m not complaining — there are so many advantages to being famous — but there are fundamental disadvantages for a part of your brain, your self, your soul. My experiences were too limited.

An amazing talent. What more can you say about her? How many people ever get to a point in their lives where they are ready to tell you everything is bullshit and you need to grab a hold of something real?

How is This a Good Idea For a Movie?

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I get that if you are a fan of the comic book series Morbius you are going to explode with rage at the banality of my lame take on this, but how is this even remotely a good idea?

Matt Smith is in final talks to join Jared Leto in “Morbius,” a film based on the Spider-Man villain of the same name.

“Safe House” director Daniel Espinosa will helm the movie. Exact details of who Smith would play are unknown at this time, other than it being a major role in the film.

Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless, who co-created the Netflix series “Lost in Space,” penned the script. Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach are producing “Morbius” with Lucas Foster. Palak Patel will oversee the pic for Sony.

Writer Roy Thomas and artist Gil Kane created Morbius in 1971 for “The Amazing Spider-Man #101.” The character was a scientist who tried to cure himself of a blood disease, with tragic results. He became afflicted with vampiric traits such as fangs and a thirst for blood — and wound up battling Spider-Man.

So, it’s like the movie Venom, which didn’t do that well, and it has Jared Leto, who tried to be the Joker and feel sort of flat with that, and we’re making another superhero film starring men again? A film about an obscure villain character that looks weird?

This is after determining that when women get better roles in these films they tend to be more successful? Like what just happened in Aquaman? And, in the case of Wonder Woman, when the lead of the story is a female, the movie tends to have artistic merit as well?

The female characters were central to the success of Black Panther as well. And I think the chief criticism of Ant Man and The Wasp was that there wasn’t enough Evangeline Lilly, correct?

Okay, whatever.