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Wednesday, July 02, 2008
How SH*T Is Duncan Bannatyne?
Very, but more of him later.

Yup, he's sh*t.

I finally got round to seeing SEX AND THE CITY at the cinema and I'll 'contextualise' my relationship with the show for you (seeing as I have a lot of time on my hands these days). I enjoyed its run on television which is quite unusual for a man (that's what your humble blogger is) and a heterosexual one to boot (but please don't). A rarity, if you like. I very nearly appeared in an episode. Yes, you read correctly. Those who know me will probably skip this tale but I will now present to you the story about me almost being in SEX AND THE CITY.

Young sluts! My favourite.

I was in NYC and was toodling along Fifth Avenue when I noticed some filming going on. Now this is quite a common sight in the city (as many of you will undoubtedly know) but I always like to stick my nose in have a look~see. I crossed over to where it was taking place (roughly, across from Tiffany's) and noticed immediately the diminutive SJP. She is tiny. So I clicked that they were filming an episode of SATC and decided to stand in a doorway, out of the crew's way. Excited yet?

Sorry dear, THE JOKER part isn't up for grabs anymore.

The scene being filmed was one of the last episodes where Carrie was walking whilst wearing headphones learning French. Remember it? 'They' were about to start 'rolling', as I believe the expression is, when the crew started to clear the area - gah! A number of people were being asked to move so when they came to me I claimed I was meeting someone (in a doorway!) to which they said was fine. So if ever you are asked to move (by film crews, police, etc...) just say you've arranged a meeting. Works every time.

Sorry dear, I don't think they're making another DRACULA movie.

The cameras began filming and SJP did some 'awesome' walking shots and she was about six feet from where I was standing. For those who are wondering, she looks weird in real life. Really weird. Her features are more grotesque, poor MATHEW "Jessica" PARKER. I digress. This classic walking was captured a few times and I (or rather, my lower torso) was in frame, huzzah! Now, I didn't know, at the time, what episode it was so I just had to wait and see when they were broadcast (or in my case - downloaded). So there I was, watching that episode when she started doing that amazing walking I referred to earlier. I knew I was but seconds away.

Nice heels gals!

Closer, closer (and I have revealed the ending to this tale in an almost Brechtian way, so shame on you if you've forgotten this does not have a happy ending) and closer she got. Then, dear reader, they cut to the next scene. Barely one second away from my appearance on that show - I would say my first appearance on US TV but I got filmed doing a promo for THE APPRENTICE when it first started years ago (I don't know if it was aired so I can't say if it was my first appearance). I digress, again. So that was the tale about how I almost appeared in SEX AND THE CITY. Now, what about the movie version?

Is it the Eighties?

A young female friend claimed, some weeks ago, that the movie is perfect to which I raised the proverbial eyebrow. She countered by asking, "What could be wrong with it?" Now, I hadn't seen it at this point in time so I offered up some elements that could be 'wrong' in any film (not just SATC) - direction, acting, script, length, etc... Needless to say, she didn't get my little gag but imagine my horror when none of my suggestions were the main problem with it. I never thought that the message(s) contained in the flick would be the problem - I mean, who would have thunk that the SEX AND THE CITY movie would have a message.

She's the only one I like and, apparently, she likes girls! Bah!

And an incredibly crass one at that. Well, two actually. First up, women. This film tells us a number of things that women do wrong, they include: [1] It's your friend that will ruin your marriage NOT your future husband; [2] If women don't give sex to their partners then it's ok for the man to go effin' someone else; [3] Women always want to forgive their 'men' but not necessarily their friends; and finally, and this is the biggie [4] A sexually confident woman (I'm talking about Samantha here) cannot exist in a relationship and punishes herself for being faithful.

Insert MANNEQUIN gag here.

At the end of this film Samantha is alone (ok, she has a dog - even more embarrassing) because she wants to remain herself. This, rather neatly, demonstrates that the women with partners are not themsleves and have to give in to their men. This is highlighted in this final scene with all the couples seated at a table with poor Sam alone. The subliminal message - women get a man at any cost, you don't want to be alone do you? That particular scene also emphasises the race issue going on here. The young girl from St Louis is brought in, helps out (like a slave) and then leaves, un~replaced! So, what was the point of her character? Even worse was the juxtaposition of her scenes with her 'man', with the rest of the white cast. Not only are they not in the same frame, they're not even in the same city. It's almost Shakespearian in delivery when it comes to class and heterosexual union.

Cue emotional baggage gag.

And as for the label/love dichotomy, don't get me started. It's mean to be a joke, right? It's just that I cannot tell anymore. The gratuitous montages (similar to car chases and shoot~outs in 'boy' movies) had me thinking it was the Eighties again and not because Walk This Way was playing. The succession of designer names was particularly sickening but I s'pose this demonstrates Carrie's obsession but why did she go to the apartment at the end? To pick up her flippin' shoes which cost so much. Lesson learned? No. In fact, hadn't we seen her address these issues in the show before? And Miranda? Why is she back to being work~fixated and being horrible to her family? Hadn't she done that before? Wasn't that RESOLVED?

I forgot to mention how awful she looked in the review.

Apparently not. So all these 'quirks' get another outing. And the men. Oh - your - deity. Their characterisation was as painfully thin as the women they date. Why does Big have second thoughts because of advice from a woman he barely knows (Miranda). And then, he changes his mind, turning the limo back. Ludicrous. And the part that Harry plays in the story was phenomenal. Well done on all of your three lines. Good points? There were a few laughs, albeit unexpected. Nice to see we can get humping dogs and shit~in~the~pants gags in 'girl' movies too. Some nice broad/slapstick humour going on, though it did jar with the 'drama' (such that it was). Still, it's very popular so it looks like there will be more!

That kind of humour would be quite acceptable in SATC

So, back to DUNCAN "The Scourge Of Dragon's Den (According To The iPlayer)" BANNATYNE and his sh*tness. I normally enjoy his work on DRAGON'S DEN but his documentary, as part of the THIS WORLD series, whilst noble in thought was atrocious in execution. He was banging on about cigarettes being marketed to kids in Africa. As I say noble but his style was as lamentable as it was childlike. Single cigarettes (which he called 'cancer sticks' - how radical!) were being sold and his equation was "Who buys single sticks? Kids do." Now this may be true but his argument was that only kids did. What about those who can't afford a whole packet? What about those who only smoke when they're drinking? Etc... His simplistic style would have been okay in a school but not on TV. And certainly not my TV. Duncan's accent was also all over the place and his longer speeches high~lighted his awfulness; fine for a pithy one~liner in the DEN, but not in a documentary. And certainly not one so serious. The producers should have hired a 'proper' person to do it. Not this bumbling oaf.

Flannel, Check; Pepper Mill, Check; Shampoo Dispenser, Check

Elsewhere in TV Land, GLASTONBURY got mucho coverage. Sadly. My anger levels seared during AMY "Did You See Her? Did You Hear Her? Did She Make Up New Words & Melodies For All Her Songs?" WINEHOUSE'S 'performance' (if you can call it that) and then again in the aftermath when the presenters hailed her return. Seriously? The same abortion I just witnessed? She needs help but as along as the media proclaim she can still 'do it' on stage then she's never gonna recover. And the less said about LILY "I Need The Words To My Own Flippin' Songs" ALLEN, the better. She, dear reader, is an s~bag of the highest order.

Sorry dear, DAVROS has been cast.

In my 'real' life, something I don't like to type about, I attended a Lecture/Q&A Session by SIR "David" ATTENBOROUGH at Uni the other day. He has received an honorary degree - read about it HERE. I managed to score VIP tickets (free of charge) and attended a reception beforehand where he toddled in quite un~noticed and the only reason I saw him was because he was in conversation with one of my film lecturers. The event itself was excellent and Dave is quite the raconteur; very amusing and spoke nothing like he does in his documentaries. Best of all, I was seated in the front row! Literally, eight feet from where he was seated. Annoyingly, I effed up on the camera front as demonstrated below:

My ace camera skills...

Flash photography was not allowed so I had to make do without it. The results were not good and the above pic was the best. Damn you Night Mode, gah! When I got home I caught most of an epic match at WIMBLEDON featuring ANDY "Why So Serious?" MURRAY. You can read about that HERE but, as expected, he was unable to beat the awesome power of NADAL who was just toooo good. The coverage by the BEEB has been very poor this year. Well, the actual footage is fine, it's the numb~nuts they get to commentate. Gone are the days of silence during the point, they talk over everything now and cram 'jokes' (and I use the term quite wrongly) in wherever possible.

Looks like that girl isn't having much fun...


'Til the next time,
C.

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posted by Cameron McEwan at 9:50 am -
4 Comments:
  • At 4:08 pm, Blogger joy said…

    I love that you've had so many star encounters running around NYC. I've been here just over a dozen years, and I can count only a few. Heh.

    I loved the movie from the BFFs angle, because for me, that's what the show was always about - their strong friendship...and then the 100 men they've had along the way. But, I definitely had my own issues with the SATC - mainly the forgiveness angle.

    And, I never listened to the "messages," because if I did, it would color every single gal in NYC aspect of my life - and probably not for the better. :-)

    I still don't get Amy Winehouse. Like at all.

    But, that's supertotallyawesome about being that close to greatness during the Attenborough interview. Pictures or no, that's the stuff you'll always remember.

     
  • At 5:46 pm, Blogger Cameron McEwan said…

    I've had some more star encounters.

    I was on~set for the filming of MEN IN BLACK 2. Took place outside Rockefeller.

    I've also walked past Phillip Seymour Hoffman and John C Reilly on Seventh. Though not at the same time.

    Not to forget standing beside Stanley Tucci in Tiffany's.

    Coincidentally, I saw Candace Bushnell in a book store at Union Square.

    Not quite an encounter but Ray Romano made a surprise appearance at the Comedy Cellar when I was there once. The place went wild.

     
  • At 7:01 pm, Blogger joy said…

    Heh, my random encounters tend to be the walk-bys - the most recent was Julia Roberts...but, she lives in my work neighborhood, so that was to be expected eventually.

    And, the rest end up being at specific events, like when I volunteer at the Tribeca Film Fest (took five years, but DeNiro finally showed up to a movie I worked...Ben Kingsley, too, and *that* was weird seeing Ghandi on a cell).

    To this day, the most celebs per square feet were the VIP tix we scored to an HBO Boxing event at MSG. The Yankees and the Knicks were seated in front of us (which isn't a grand as you'd imagine - we're short), and we had better seats than Spike Lee. And, Matt Damon and Casey Affleck had to brush by us to get to their seats. (which isn't as grand you'd imagine - with a friend on one side screaming, OMG Matt Damon!!!, OMG Matt Damon!!!...and Matt Damon on my other side).

     
  • At 2:48 pm, Blogger Cameron McEwan said…

    Nice!

    I once saw Christina Aguilera at a Yankees game.

    Anytime I hear the name Matt Damon, I always think of TEAM AMERICA.

     
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