We all have our television weaknesses. For my dad it used to be watching Silk Stockings or Le Femme Nikita on USA in our basement (but then switching the channel when he heard people coming down the basement steps), for my mom it was watching Survivor long after it was any good and yelling at the television about how so-and-so was a “snake in the grass!” (Note: This once happened when a boy was at our house picking me up to go to a movie – classy), for my sister it’s watching really, really creepy medical/health shows on Discovery Health about things like giant tumors with teeth in someone’s stomach and for me it is the inability to turn off really bad movies when they appear on the tv screen while channel surfing through USA, TNT, TBS, etc.
I can’t help it – I catch a glimpse of a crappy 90s-early 00s movie and I am a goner. The next two hours of my life are sucked away from me and I walk away ashamed and confused. I wish I was the type of person who said this only happened for movies on Turner Classic Movie channel starring Gregory Peck or Katherine Hepburn – but that would be a big lie. My remote stops for Piper Perabo, Moira Kelly, and that kid playing Lil Saint in You Got Served. And so without digging myself further into a pit of shame – here are my top 3 ultimate waste of a Sunday afternoon movies.
3) Coyote Ugly – I know, I know and I feel your judgement from all the way over here in Japan — but you know what – you can’t fight the moonlight bitches. There is something to love for everyone in this very guilty pleasure – for the gentleman of the crowd there are scantily clad ladies who sing and dance on top of a bar, for the ladies there is that hot Australian guy and a story about a girl trying to find her way and make her dreams come true in New York City, for masochists there is Tyra Banks attempting to act, for chubby chasers – there is a very hefty John Goodman who performs a faux strip routine on top of a bar. The music is great – no apologies – I owned both the songs “Can’t Fight the Moonlight” by LeeAnn Rimes and whatever song it was that Piper Perabo sings which features these painfully awful/stellar lyrics.
I don’t like to be alone in the night
And I don’t like to hear I’m wrong when I’m right
And I don’t like to have the rain on my shoes
But I do love you
Yikes. 16 year old me loved that shit. And I must admit that if I heard this song right now I might still be able to sing the whole thing. I must also cop to owning a faux snakeskin cowboy hat not long after this movie came out. Anyway – yes to Coyote Ugly. I forgot to mention that the soundtrack also features The Devil Went Down to Georgia, Pour Some Sugar on Me, Unbelievable, One Way or Another, and INXS’s Need You Tonight. Great guilty pleasure music. In a related note – my computer just asked for a shower after having to google ‘Coyote Ugly Soundtrack’ — sorry buddy.
2) You Got Served – I wish I was more ashamed of this one, but I stand by it. What’s not to love? There are dance battles with amazing moves, Steve Harvey as a character named Mr. Rad who owns the club where the battles take place, someone secretly macking on his best friend’s sister (ouch), a ridiculous plot involving minor drug trafficking, the best friends and founders of the crew having a bro fight and breaking up, a horrible late 90s/early 2000s villain with really, really bad hair, the clothing choices are exceptional and the climax of the movie takes place at an MTV dance competition hosted by Lala (remember her?) called the Big Bounce.
Oh and Walt from Lost plays the most adorable little boy/mascot for the crew ever (Lil’ Saint) who –SPOILER ALERT – dies toward the end of the movie, thus reuniting the broken up crew — becoming one as the Lil’ Saints defeat Wade’s (villain with bad hair) crew. Casablanca can keep it’s famous last words because what can top these – “Y’all just mad, ’cause today, you suckas got served.” Also bonus props for the Lil’ Kim cameo and the declaration that the final battle would be ‘straight hood – no rules’. Awww yeah. And the icing on the cake – “Jackée” is in it too!
1) The Cutting Edge – Two words – toe pick. If you have seen this insanely addicting movie about a diva spoiled rich girl figure skater and her washed up/injured roughneck Midwestern hockey player partner then you know exactly what I’m talking about. God — this movie is the best. I can probably act out the whole thing right now for you (if only I had a Doug Dorsey to assist me in the Pamchenko twist).
This movie is great because it’s about the most ludicrous sport ever – Olympic pairs figure skating and it knows it. The sexual tension between Kate Mosely and Doug Dorsey is pretty much amazeballs. I love the snotty rich girl with the rough around the edges blue collar guy scenario and both the actors bring it with their looks of hate/lust. Why weren’t these two in more movies together? The costumes are ridiculous as it’s set in the early 90s and Moira Kelly’s near unibrow really is it’s own star. Kate’s overbearing father is played by Terry O’Quinn – who later would go on to be John Locke on Lost (holler!)
In case you needed more incentive to watch this. Other reasons why it’s my #1 Guilty Pleasure – amazing figure skating costumes, a training montage that is tops, Kate’s drunken antics after placing at Nationals – “In case you missed it. I am THROWING MYSELF AT YOU!” (amazing), the evil Russians at the Olympics (like the Dolf Lundgrens of pairs figure skating), the slutty American figure skater trying to steal Doug from Kate, Kate’s fiance’s name is Hale, the ridiculous skating montages where they don’t even try to make it look like the two leads are really skating, the soft lighting, and of course — Kate continually reminding a bruised and battered Doug to use his “toe pick”. What a bitch.
The tag line for the movie calls it a “Love/Skate Relationship”. But I am going to say it. I love you, The Cutting Edge. I love you. And just remember who said it first. Toe pick.
What I’m Watching: The Sessions – Just watched the Helen Hunt/John Hawkes/William H. Macy movie based on the true story of polio victim/iron lung dweller/poet Mark O’Brien and how he used a sex surrogate to lose his virginity before he died. I know it sounds ridiculous but the movie was incredibly moving and beautiful and honest about sex in a way many other movies wouldn’t dare to be. I know everyone is losing their shit over Anne Hathaway in Les Mis – but Helen Hunt was better. She was vulnerable and strong and terrific. And she was naked a lot which requires a healthy amount of guts if you ask me. John Hawkes was also totally robbed of a nomination. Great stuff and a wonderful little movie that left me with tears in my eyes.
What I’m Listening to: The Purity Ring – specifically the song Lofticries. It’s electro-pop at it’s finest and I can’t stop hitting replay. The whole album is pretty good, but that song is an ear worm right now.
Give it a listen – Lofticries by The Purity Ring
What I’m Reading: Nearly finished with a Dance With Dragons – Book 5 of the Song and Fire and Ice series. It’s good. Lined up next is a little non-fiction.