at the turn of the century i worked at this place

and one of our clients was MGM and MGM liked me and said you can have any of our DVD titles.

and i dont know if this is still the case, but back then it was pretty slim pickins

so if the richest man in the world wants to pay 2x the price for MGM ($8 billion)

simply so he can get the Apprentice outtakes

and every week embarrass Trump by showing what a

racist sexist baby he is

allegedly

and accidentally revitalize a once-important studio

i say fuck yeah.

anyways i said gimme a nice little box of katharine hepburn movies

instead they gave me every james bond film

none of which was of any interest to me.

took me a while but i finished Inside Out

hadnt realized how much i forgot about that movie.

halfway through i was getting mad at Sad for fucking everything up and i was seriously wondering why Sadness is even necessary in life, let alone that small control center in the brain.

but of the many things i learned at college, when writing stories there’s a three step process:

introduce lovable characters,
then fuck them over royally
then watch them return to glory

so how can you have that arc if you don’t have sadness and anger and disgust right in the middle of it.

for every peak you need a valley

told all this stuff to my shrink today and she seemed impressed at how much i got out of the film

so how will you use this in your life, she asked me?

i said if i see a pretty girl who looks sad in a picture, i wont try to stand on my head to make her smile, i’ll just think to myself

there’s some good times heading that chick’s way.

today the arclight closed forever

do you know how many dates ive had there

and movies i went there alone

and famous people i saw there and met and talked with?

im trying to write something for medium about it but its all baloney.

do i need to start drinking again?

where is my mojo.

i went a week not being to blog on this blog, how is that possible?

how can i not write about the cubs or hollywood or even this now?

saw sooooo many movies there.

gone.

my favorite movie reviewer on YouTube for 2020 is Chris Stuckmann

Here he takes apart the new Wonder Woman movie in a thoughtful, careful, thorough manner.

i suppose it’s why he has over 1.8 million subscribers.

1.8 million subscribers is quadruple what the LA Times’ youtube channel currently has.

the LA Times has a staff of talented, award-winning, super-connected journalists photographers and video experts

and yet one guy in his spare room,

wearing a Blockbuster Video t-shirt laps them.

why?

are they doing everything wrong?

are they not putting their right people in front of the camera?

despite all the “young” people they’ve hired in digital, do they still not get it?

i think the main problem is the Times isn’t really used to paying attention to the audience.

Few newspapers are used to doing that.

Also: audiences change what they want.

Often.

heres an uber story you might like

tomorrow im gonna do job #19 of my career… driving for Uber and Lyft.

i could write books about the 5,000 trips i took, the people i met, the stories they told and the things i learned about LA as we drove.

picked up a dude in DTLA at the old American Apparel factories, we headed west and passed Sam’s Hofbrau House.

guy asks, ever been in there?

nope, i said.

why not?

ah, strip clubs seem weird to me in your own town, i explained. i mean look at me. i turned to give him a nice glance at my profile. do i look like i need to go to a bar to hang out with hot babes?

we laughed as we passed by the Pińata District.

he continued, well that strip club is key to the great movie you might have heard of, Pulp Fiction.

oh yeah? I said. who doesn’t love Pulp Fiction.

yeah, he said, rumor has it Quentin was in there one night with some industry types. thinking about using it for one of his films. they got drunk. and when he got home he realized he didn’t have his wallet.

so he retraced his steps and told his assistant to call Sam’s.

so the assistant calls and says, hey do any of you remember seeing Quentin there last night?

whoever is on the other line says, don’t know who you’re talking about but even if i did we don’t divulge our guests. company policy.

the assistant said, fair enough. well he’s my boss and he thinks he left his wallet there.

bartender or whoever asks, can you describe the wallet?

assistant says, it’s very unique. it’s brown and says Bad Mother Fucker on it.

bartender laughs and says, yes we have it, but you need to ask him where he got it because we all want one just like it.

whats interesting about uber and lyft is it was such a fascinating side job and every night i learned something about this city, humanity, life, and myself. some nights i would get home, eat, take a leak and think, i just feel like it’s too dangerous to drive out there tonight. and i’d stay home.

other nights i’d drive until 4am.

soon im gonna pay off a car i never thought id own, a mercedes, and a lot of it was paid by driving people around.

but it was dangerous. my mom didn’t want me to do it. she never wanted me to do it. she was all, youre a grown man. you have a job, why are you doing this?

i said, ma, i love this just as much as being at the oscars. these people are just as interesting. the things i see are as good as any movie. people cry in that backseat, they laugh, they have fights on the phone. they pour their hearts out to me. they tell me stories that when i Google afterward appear nowhere on the web.

why should i read 100 year old novels when life is unfolding every day and night right here in real time?

poor woman, ive put her through so much.

soon im gonna buy her the biggest tv she’s ever seen.

 

today Black Panther died

he was also Jackie Robinson, James Brown and Thurgood Marshall.

chadwick boseman sure seemed like the most unassuming movie star of them all.

quiet, low-key, reserved.

maybe it was because he had cancer in him for the last four years and maybe he always knew it was going to end in his mid 40s

or maybe he was just the essence of cool.

of all the Avengers was there anyone who walked so softly?

and of all the movies he made, did you ever go into any of them saying, oh yeah this one is going to knock it out of the park?

and yet they all did.

his reward? a couple MTV Movie Awards,  an NAACP Image Award

better.

he got to kiss Lupita

rest in peace my man.

2020 sure is a trip.

What should and will win the Oscars 2020

BEST PICTURE
Who should win: Jojo Rabbit
Who will win: Once Upon a Time In… Hollywood

LEAD ACTOR
Who should and will win: Joaquin Phoenix, Joker

LEAD ACTRESS
Who should and will win: Renée Zellweger, Judy

SUPPORTING ACTOR
Who should win: Anthony Hopkins, The Two Popes
Who will win: Brad Pitt, Once Upon a Time In… Hollywood

SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Who should and will win: Laura Dern, Marriage Story

DIRECTOR
Who should win: Sam Mendes, 1917
Who will win: Bong Joon Ho, Parasite

ANIMATED FEATURE
Who should win: Klaus
Who will win: Toy Story 4

ANIMATED SHORT
Who should win: Memorable
Who will win: Hair Love

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Who should win: Jojo Rabbit, Taika Waititi
Who will win: The Two Popes, Anthony McCarten

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Who should win: It should be a five-way tie.
Who will win: Marriage Story, Noah Baumbach

CINEMATOGRAPHY
Who should and will win: Roger Deakins, 1917

had a very good day with amber today

it was her day off

but it was not mine. so for a long time in the day i was working on getting this kobe bryant piece up.

and fine tuning it, and reworking it.

still when it published there were typos.

of course.

then we had to jet across over to the Grove to interview a bunch of people.

that was not as easy as you think, but when people open up incredible things come out, so you dont need that many to talk to you.

just enough did.

and i learned that the oldest toy store in LA is in the Farmer’s Market,

and it’s beautifully stocked.

dude told me Nerf basketball is still very popular at his store.

then we went to in n out to have a cheap date nite

then we came home because i had to upload the pics from the Grove and do stuff with the audio,

and then i transcribed a few from another outing

then we drove over to CityWalk because i wanted to see Ford versus Ferrari because it was nominated for Best Picture

and I think Christian Bale was nominated and maybe Matt Damon too,

who knows but it started at 9:50pm so we went

learned an interesting thing, at that late hour they don’t charge you for parking.

saved $5 right there!

the movie was ok. nothing special. i mean i enjoyed learning a little about Shelby and Lee Iacocoa

and Les Mans

but whatever, glad i saw it, Adam Sandler was robbed.

then i came home and did a bunch more transcribing.

amber and i had a wonderful time hanging out together, something we rarely get to do it seems

and it was great.

i circled the date on the calendar

and put a star on it

saw uncut gems last night

it was incredible.

top three movies i saw in 2019

the black godfather
uncut gems
shazam

i dont know why but shazam really got me.

but all i thought about today was uncut gems.

it was classic college of creative studies: be truthful, create likable characters, put them through the wringer, see what happens

amber hated it. half america hates it. but almost all the critics love it.

as you can see from the high ranking i gave shazam, one would think that i usually side with the audience, that may be true. who knows. i thought parasite was overrated.

and once upon a time in hollywood.

weirder crazier shit has gone down in hollywood and there is no need to make any of it up.

weirder shit goes down on my block.

i also loved booksmart, longshot, joker and aladdin.

i went to 40 movies this year. next year i wanna make it 52.

trying to figure out how to see 1917 tomorrow.

 

i went to a climate strike protest rally yesterday

i learned a lot. mostly that we are in good hands. also, those hands wont have a chance to save us if we dont save us first.

then i learned about this japanese grocery store in DTLA that has really good pre-made sushi for cheap.

we watched little kids annoy pigeons with their toy helicopters

we watched a couple of gay guys have a romantic lunch sharing a beer and feeding edamame to each other.

then we went to the movies and saw a really good biopic about Harriet Tubman

i wish it was better. something was missing. maybe the cinematography? i cant put my finger on it.

theres fires burning all around us. proof that sprawl hasn’t completely done its dirty work.

theres still wilderness, which is nice, but now its charred, for many reasons.

a couple of recycling places caught fire, hard to believe that just naturally occurred.

i wonder about God, when he looks down on us, does he cry sometimes?

like can he just not help to?

then today around noon, a 15 minute rain shower just happened out of the blue.

and i was all, me too, angels.

moi aussi.