Cutting Room for February 16

  • I don’t know a word in French that wasn’t in “Lady Marmalade,” so someone needs to tell me if “Le Figaro” translates to “Liars with Pants of Fire.” Why? Well, a French newspaper with that name is reporting that Marion Cotillard was just cast in The Dark Knight Rises. If the French aren’t lying to me again, I’m ecstatic. My only regret is that Anne Hathaway beat her to Catwoman’s spandex.

  • The best part about watching The Room is knowing you’ll never watch a movie that bad ever again. The so-wretched-it’s-awesome cult classic has played the midnight run at our own Dundee Theater ( specifically because it is so beyond reason in its awfulness. Yet a man named Sandy Schklair, whose IMDB resume need not have the stain of The Room on it, is fighting to put that hyperlink on his bio. Basically, Entertainment Weekly is reporting that writer/producer/star/probable-maniac Tommy Wiseau may not have directed the infamous train wreck, having hired Schklair to do the dirty deed. A battle is brewing over ownership of The Room. The only comparison would be if two dudes in an elevator both tried to claim they were the fart maker.

  • Park Chan-wook, director of Oldboy and Thirst, is set to make his English-language film debut with Stoker, which will star Nicole Kidman and Colin Firth. They’re probably excited to be in the genius director’s new film, but if they’ve seen any of his other movies, I’m guessing their excitement will be tempered by the time they finish reading the script and they find out what horrible, horrible things they’ll be doing to one another.

Cutting Room provides breaking local and national movie news … complete with added sarcasm. Send any relevant information to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Check out Ryan on the radio on CD 105.9 (Fridays at around 7:30 a.m.), on his blog at and on Twitter (

entered on 02/16/11 at 09:37 PM | read comments »

Daily Dump for Monday (February 14)

That groundhog knows his shit, huh? In the midst of the coldest stretch of the year that fuzzy bastard said "it ends soon." Well tickle me with groundhog fur, we've been swimming around in melted snow rivers as the temps have soared and with it, my mood! Rejoice for the wonder of nature and its ability to lessen my grumpitude. Unless of course I'm watching the Grammys. Last night Facebook friends got a little taste of the near-constant snarkiness and bitchitude that will tsunami them come Oscar night, as my reaction to Lady Antebellum (a name that evokes an era of slavery by the by) dooking up the joint by beating Eminem came out in status updates like mad. It will be worse on my twitter feed and facebook page come that fateful night in February when The King's Speech ascends to the pretender's throne. I should point out that I made a comparison I liked last night, as I called Lady Antebellum The King's Speech to Eminem's Inception. What I mean is, Lady A is the same kind of inoffensive glad-handing, mainstream satisfying shinola that Tom Hooper's film represents, while Em pushes buttons and generally acts like an artist, even while being immensely popular, just like Christopher Nolan's film. At any rate, let's all just rejoice that I still have as many Grammys as Justin Bieber.

On to today's newsy stuff!

Stand back: Nerdgasm in progress

You have no idea how much I fully intended on hating the new Spider-man movie. More than the hyphen in the middle of his name, I loathe the idea of another origin story, I hate that Marc Webb (who has no experience) was tossed the gig seemingly to play up the teenie-bopper romance angles, and how enraged I was at the inclusion of the GD Lizard as the villain. Then came word of Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone's involvement. Ok. He's fine, and I adore her. Then came word Gwen Stacy would be the love interest that Stone was playing. Can't hate that. Then came the lithe new costume design. Solid. Then came the mechanical web shooters. Oh Jesus, someone is pressing my buttons. Then came today's news: The movie will be called The Amazing Spider-Man and the full costume looks like this:

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!! I mean SERIOUSLY! Look at that pose! Look how you can see the web shooters! Look how his eyes don't seem as goofy as the last series! That mask is PERFECT! Say what you will about whether there are spiraling lines around his boots, the mask is like 50% of the costume's coolness and it is out of this world. I hate this. I know I'm going to be disappointed at ham-fisted dialogue and an attempt to Twilight-up the romance angles in this thing, but how am I supposed to remain rigid and naysaying when you show me that? The Amazing Spider-Man? You producers are jerk-heads for reducing me to a non-rational fanboy like this.


We're in the midst of a Thundercat renaissance, what with the new animated series on the way. But we have just gotten a glimpse into what might have been with this.

That's test CGI for a movie that will now never happen...and that's a good thing, given the unsophisticated look of the characters involved. Talking cat-people fighting with swords is always cool, and there are moments in there that I found alright, but overall it has the feel of that TMNT movie that was made to satisfy one person (and I happen to be friends with him). Point is, I'm curious as to what they're doing with this semi-beloved 80s franchise. Glad to see that whatever it is they're doing, it isn't this.

Box Office Results: Bieber, boobs, and the bard

For real? Sandler's movies can just do that much money every single time? He poops out a half-witted flick and we must give him a $30 million opening? And Bieber? Really? $30 million for him too? AND GNOMES? WE SUPPORTED THAT GNOE MOVIE THIS MUCH? You know that there are going to be like 12 direct-to-video sequels with those gnomes working their way through Shakespeare, right? Like they'll one day get to garden gnomes doing Othello? Oy.

Here's where the money went, haiku style:

1.) Just Go With It - $30.5 million (Accuracy of prediction - 97.5%)
I do not want to
"just go with" anything, jerks.
And you can't make me.

2.) Never Say Never - $29.5 million (Accuracy of prediction - 99%)
Bieber cried last night,
when the boy went Grammy-less.
I'm crying for THIS.

3.) Gnomeo and Juliet - $25.5 million (Accuracy of prediction - 83%)
No...but for real gang...
this cannot be a hit, right?

4.) The Eagle - $8.5 million (Accuracy of prediction - 97%)
It isn't soaring
but it didn't smack window.
So...that's a good thing.

5.) The Roommate - $8 million (Accuracy of prediction - 94%)
Bye Minka Kelly!
Come back to the top 5 soon!
...with a better film...

Overall Accuracy of Prediction - 94%
Hey! I got an "A"!
I don't do that too often.
This goes on the fridge.

Okay gang. Monday's over, so go have a great week! And follow me on Twitter!

entered on 02/14/11 at 11:20 PM | read comments »

Ryan’s Junk Drawer (February 11)

"With great junk, comes great responsibility" - Better Off Ted

Finally! I made you wait for my junk too long this week, and I apologize. My junk is something that nobody should wait for, as a general rule. I've been trying to get people to look at my junk whenever they want for years now. The more the merrier, when it comes to my junk, I say! And yet, here I go, making you think my junk wasn't going to pop up this week. But it did! My junk always delivers in the end.

Obviously, I don't mean what you think I mean. I mean, I do mean what you think I mean, but I only mean it as a joke. My "junk" is really just movie news that's too small to warrant a regular blog post by itself. Instead, I gather up a bunch of nuggets and things like screws you find lying around your house and shove them in a "drawer" (meaning one column like this). What's that? You don't randomly find screws in your house? Really? It's entirely possible that I either have a ghost version of Johnny Appleseed who chucks screws and not apple-starters (Johnny Screwseed?) or random chairs are going to fall apart one day when I sit in them. Should be fun. Anyhoodle, we begin each installment of my Junk Drawer by taking a look at that illustration of a junk drawer up top. It's creepy (extra creepy now that I put that black background on it), but somehow it's from Highlights Magazine FOR CHILDREN. Weird. Anyway, I pick an item from the image and make a story about it that's weird because doing so amuses me.

Today's item is the green and red thing in the corner. "You can too turn a cucumber inside out," said little Billy, whose boasts often involved doing things to produce. "Nuh uh," said little Sally, whose distrust of little Billy was frequently thwarted by his prepubescent dimples. "Yeah huh," said little Billy, who would one day attempt to use the same argument style in his divorce proceedings. "Nuh UH" said little Sally, who believed repetition was God's divine gift to humanity. "Watch me," said little Billy, who believed anything was possible if you tried hard enough except math. "Ewwww" said little Sally, who would one day have the same reaction to a cucumber. "See," said little Billy, who really thought he turned the cucumber inside out. "I'm telling the teacher," said little Sally, who probably saved Billy's life that day.

Okay, that's enough, let's get to some newsy nuggets!

1.) Cruise Hathaway of rocking

As has been threatened for some time now, it looks like Tom Cruise IS going to sing and dance on purpose. In his quest to regain legitimacy as an actor and icon, Cruise will star in a mediocre musical involving shitty 80s hair bands. His agent, who presumably just won a bet, has negotiated for the former hottest actor in the world to star in Rock of Ages, a movie destined to be remembered as having happened. With the toothy wonder locked in, casting has moved forward to target some ladies, most notably Anne Hathaway.


Hathaway loves her some singing and dancing, and unlike Cruise, watching her do it is enjoyable for the right reasons. It's not clear how close she is to signing, and I'm not entirely sure if her character would get romantically involved with Cruise or anything. I could probably find out, but I feel like spending more of my life on this subject is a decision I'd regret.

2.) Now that he's fixed California...

I decided to try to make a thinly veiled political criticism of Arnold Schwarzenegger's work as governor of California with my title here. I know it's not impressive, but if you consider the number of doofuses (is the plural doofusi?) running with some variation of "He said he'd be back" as a title, you should probably throw roses at me. Anyway, dude is seriously looking for acting work again. I suppose this is good news, because his work in politics only may have involved ruining California's economy forever...and thus ruining America's economy forever. Oh well, it still went better than Jingle All the Way. This stage in Arnie's career was always going to be tough, being that he was most known for being muscular and talking funny. We liked to watch him fight and stuff, something older dudes don't do as well. And now making fun of his voice is running dangerously close to picking on the elderly. I do have a solution!


That's right! We should only hire the CGI version of Arnold they used in the last Terminator movie. What was the name of that one again? Terminator: You Will Regret This? Anyway, chances are that they won't use this brilliant computerized version of the formerly swoll-up, now weirdly shaped former governor, but it's a great idea. I look forward to seeing what vapor sequels he gets attached to in the next week or so.

3.) I owe this woman

It may look as though I'm Facebook stalking someone with that photo, but that's the potential heir to the giant Oracle fortune. Her name is Megan Ellison, and she is full of awesome. Why? Oh, I don't know, instead of using her vast inheritance on blow and party dresses, she is turning into quite the movie producer. She's like 25 years old and has already helped finance True Grit. Yeah, radness, huh? And she's also the person who restarted The Wettest Country in the World, which is a new John Hilcoat movie and not the porno it sounds like. But the best is this: She just reignited two Paul Thomas Anderson projects. Yeah. For real. The Master and Inherent Vice aren't going to be easy sells, what with the former being an attack on scientology and the latter being a Thomas Pynchon adaptation. It takes a brave, intelligent soul to put up money on those films, and thus Megan Ellison gets the patented "Ryan Syrek's Junk" Award. That's right, the billion-dollar brunette is the first ever recipient of an award involving my junk. Enjoy that, Megan. Seriously, though, this is the sort of thing that makes me regain faith in the human race.

4.) Fearless, flawless Box Office Predictions

As per last week, I remind you that I have incorporated the weekly fun and tomfoolery that is me making predictions about box office while using the centuries-old poetic tradition of haiku. Since this week involves an Adam Sandler movie, my haiku is already the classiest thing that Sandler has ever been involved with. The other stuff this week is Bieber-iffic and Gnome-alicious. In other words: Ewwwww. Here comes my prediction haiku.

1.) Just Go With It - $32 million
A bossy title
prompts me to give a response.
I WON'T go with it!

2.) Never Say Never - $29 million
This title I like,
Because, with all things Bieber
I use "never" tons...

3.) Gnomeo and Juliet - $17 million
Hey, William Shakespeare
your play now has gnomes in it.
I'm so glad you're dead.

4.) The Eagle - $8 million
If this had "Eddie"
I would totally see it.
Gladiator Lite.

5.) The Roommate - $7 million
It won't win this week
but as far as I'm concerned
Kelly is on top.

WILDCARD - The King's Speech - $6 million
This won't go away
Especially come Oscars...
How irritating.

5.) Trailers, parked

I have to say that I was shocked by the X-Men First Class
trailer. SHOCKED. I expected it to be hokey, awkward, and amateurish given the things I had heard and seen. But it looks...damn good. I mean, there are too many characters, but if they keep this with this tone, with this intimacy, with this scope...I am going to be pleasantly surprised...and that's not just leftover Brett Ratner flashbacks talking here. See for yourself.

When Russell Brand is finally divorced by Katy Perry and is no longer famous, he has an open invitation to hang out at my place. Why? Because I find my wife laughing at Russell Brand to be as funny as Russell Brand himself. She'll be delighted to know that this Arthur remake even has a return to him making jokes about shoes. Oh, and Luis Guzman, who we all know as the most famous graduate of Greendale College.

K. That's that. I hope you loved my junk this week, and have a wonderful, safe weekend. It's going to be in the 50s here, and in February 50 degrees in Omaha is like paradise...only with more potholes. Follow me on Twitter, and I'll see you on Monday!

entered on 02/11/11 at 10:48 PM | read comments »

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The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

The epic conclusion to the most epic of epics.


The Babadook

A terrifying tale of an ooky pop-up book and motherly love.


The Tale of Princess Kaguya

A water-colored take on a Japanese folktale that is prettier than it is interesting.


The Theory of Everything

"Out of this world" performances buoy a sub-par script.


Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

Half of what promises to be an epic conclusion to a fabulous series.



A delirously fun satirical send up of artistic pretension. 


The Overnighters

"The Grapes of Wrath" in documentary form set in North Dakota.



If this was humanity's last hope, give up.


Happy, Little Clouded

Actual human beings made The Tale of Princess Kaguya, and you can tell. A water-colored rebuke of the robots who...

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No Big Bang

In 1965, Stephen Hawking wrote his first ground-breaking thesis and wed Jane Wilde. His paper argued that if a star can...

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Leni Riefen-stalling

On the one hand, any film subtitled “Part 1” is a naked cash grab. On the other hand, shut up and take my money, Hunger...

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Oopsie Genius

I know two things for sure: (1) Birdman aims to relentlessly drive home one singular point, one thoroughly expressed thesis...

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