Angelina Jolie is in Lebanon

Source: Daily Star

As part of her UN duties as a special envoy, THE Angelina Jolie has visited Lebanon to check up on the Syrian refugees in the country. She has also spoken with our prime minister Mikati (such a lucky person, isn’t he?).

“The Lebanese people themselves are dealing with their own problems… it is all the more meaningful that they are so generous and so kind, and I hope the world acknowledges that.”

Well, I hope so too.

So while the region’s Goodwill ambassadors promote their music albums, she’s going around doing what is supposed to be done. Such a shame for our “artists.”

5 Reasons the 2012 Golden Globes Nominations Are A Big Failure

If you, like me, were outraged by how ridiculous the Golden Globes nominations were this year, this is for you. And if you’re not, this is why you – as a movie enthusiast at the very least – should be.

1) Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 was nominated… for nothing. Not a single category. Nada. Disregard the fact that it’s the last movie in the series. Disregard the fact that it’s the highest grossing franchise in Hollywood history and disregard the fact that Hollywood owes a huge chunk of its financial well-being to Harry Potter. Leave it all aside. Deathly Hallows Part 2 has an aggregate score of 96% on Rotten Tomatoes. For reference, the other nominated movies have scores that range from Moneyball’s 95% to The Help’s 75%. And if you thought Moneyball’s 1% difference is irrelevant, it becomes relevant when you notice that Moneyball has this score based on 194 reviews whilst Harry Potter has his based on 257 reviews.

But no matter. For those who think Rotten Tomatoes is not a decent criteria – after all Bridesmaids is truly horrible – I shall refer to Metacritic, which gives movies a certain grade if you want based on the reviews they get. Harry Potter has a grade of 87. Hugo has a grade of 83. Moneyball’s grade is 87 as well. The Help comes in at a measly 62. I’m just saying.

It’s either the reviewers are bipolar or those nominating in these award shows are bipolar. I’m sure there’s a correlation between those reviewing and those nominating, which leads me to think this double bipolar disease they have is truly damaging to the industry. What’s even worse about this is that Warner Bros actually tried to get Harry Potter a nomination. Ah well… elitist snobs always win, I guess.

2) Lebanon’s Where Do We Go Now was not nominated in the foreign movie category but the United States’ In The Land of Blood of Honey was. Apparently the fact that the latter movie had an American production, albeit being filmed in Bosnia, did not deter them from considering it foreign. They consider the language the movie was spoken in apparently. Add to that the fact that the movie has an English version which was submitted to other categories for consideration. But as you know, In The Land of Blood of Honey is Angelina Jolie’s movie and as a friend put it, these award people can sometimes be starwhores. Just look at the other nominated movies in this category: Flowers of War has Christian Bale. The Kid With The Bike and The Skin I Live In were also directed by more famous names than Nadine Labaki.

Perhaps our Oscar hopes are not totally dead now. But Where Do We Go Now‘s chances are now very slim at best.

3) Glee gets nominated for best comedy series but The Big Bang Theory, which is truly a comedy, does not get any nominations except for Johnny Galecki’s (Leonard) nomination for best actor in a comedy. Jim Parsons (Sheldon) was not nominated. I don’t even feel like having to elaborate on this.

4) Nina Dobrev, who plays two characters on the CW’s hit series The Vampire Diaries, doesn’t even get a nomination for drama actress in a TV Show. Her characters have nothing to do with each other to make it at least easier for her to portray them. They’re as different as different go. And yet, she’s snubbed. How could a CW TV show be considered worthy after all, right? It’s not like it’s not better than most TV Shows out there. But I guess you should refer to point #1 for their view on quality. I’m sorry to break it to Nina Dobrev but apparently anything she does won’t be enough to get her an award outside the Teen’s Choice or People’s Choice Awards.

5) House’s Hugh Laurie and Dexter‘s Michael C. Hall are both not nominated for best actor in a drama even though they’re both portraying totally twisted and sick characters that should be eaten up by any award committee. The fact that they’re slowly becoming iconic characters in our generation apparently doesn’t help as well.

I guess the finger given by Hugh Laurie as House is fitting.

Kung Fu Panda 2 – Movie Review

Everyone agrees that the first Kung Fu Panda was a great animated movie. It had great animation, witty humor, an interesting storyline and all around awesomeness. It also made a lot of money, which motivated its makers, DreamWorks, to make a sequel.

Well, the sequel is here and is it as good? It depends on your personal preference.

When fireworks were discovered in China, Lord Chen, a peacock prince, started experimenting with them and got his parents worried. They went to an oracle who foretold his demise at the hands of a black and white creature. Chen, overhearing the oracle, went and eradicated all the panda population in China, not knowing that by doing so, he sealed his fate.

Meanwhile, Po (Jack Black) is still the dragon warrior and he’s still out of shape. If you thought him becoming the almighty warrior would allow him to go up a flight of stairs, you were mistaken. He also can’t control his hunger yet. Not that you should complain. It’s Po, after all. The Furious Five are also back, with the same actors and actresses giving vocal performances. Angelina Jolie returns as Tigress, in case you’re wondering.

Facing thefts across Chinese towns of metal things, Po and the Furious Five set out to save the day, only for Po to have a flashback from parts of his life he had forgotten. And so, as they set out to save China from Lord Chen, Po is also on a mission to find himself.

Kung Fu Panda 2 is much more heartfelt than its predecessor. It is at points simply emotional. There’s one particular scene in mind that will shake you to your core. It is also less funny than the predecessor. That’s why I’m not sure if it’s better. It is a very good movie in itself. It is highly enjoyable, authentic and, well, awesome. If your idea of a good animated movie is one that’s not fun all the time, with moments that will get you thinking or emotional, you will love this one. If you wanted something more like the first one (fun, fun, fun), this one is slightly different but you will enjoy it nonetheless.

Jack Black is great in giving life – again – to Po. He’s hilarious at some points and, when required, pretty sentimental. Angelina Jolie is back as the awesome heartless Tigress, only this time, she will have heart. The movie also features the vocal talents of Gary Oldman as the villain Lord Chen. Jean-Claude Van Damme (he still exists?) also gives his voice to one of the characters and so does Dustin Hoffman.

Overall, Kung Fu Panda 2 was a highly enjoyable movie. It doesn’t clash in continuity with its predecessor and fortifies the idea of a Kung Fu Panda saga. So if you have nothing to do on some afternoon and you’re in the mood for some heartfelt awesomeness, this is the movie you need to watch.