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DISGRASIAN’s Summer Reading: Lisanti Quarterly

August 11th, 2010 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

We’ll be away from our desks the month of August, carrying on with the non-bloggy aspects of our lives, watching mindless movie blockbusters, and indulging in summery drinks made with generous pours of bourbon. During this month, we’ll be linking each day to a different website that we ♥. Hopefully you’ll discover something delightful and new while we’re gone. If not, you are a serious Captain Crankypants and are probably in dire need of a summery drink made with a generous pour of bourbon.

‘Til September, lovelies.


Mark Lisanti is the funniest man on the Internet.

Now before you say, “But what about Gwyneth? He’s a fuckin’ gas!” let me just tell you that I’ve been making this declaration repeatedly since 2004, when I discovered Lisanti’s little H-wood insider blog Defamer (after carrying the site to Gawker-fueled ubiquity, he left his founding editor post in ’08). I blurted the words to him at a poorly-attended cocktail party at Sundance ’06, after an hour of awkwardly hanging out in wait for Robin Tunney’s arrival, when his buddy casually dropped his name and I lost my shit faster than a rookie chili-eating contestant. I say it snarkily at parties, when I realize he’s funnier in HTML than in person (ZING, sucka! I kid, I kid). I grumble it to the sky ever single time the guy outfunnies me on a Facebook wall (this happens more frequently than you would think). And I sighed it aloud yesterday, when I read about his new gig as Deputy Editor of Yahoo! Entertainment Blogs via Business Insider (who I must applaud for choosing a most distinguished photo of the lad to compliment his success).

Super funny people are typically the worst folks in the world to be friends with. For one, the odds of them being totally crazy/depressed/derelict/perverse is about 100%. And two, they spend most of their time with you either being spitefully unfunny (they are, after all, “off the clock”) or proving, at all times, how much more twisted, quick-draw and sharp they are than everybody else. But the thing is, Lisanti doesn’t have to be cementing sticky celebrity nicknames or befriending Tawny Kitaen to make you laugh. He just makes you laugh. I often wonder if he even has to try to be funny, because gentle–but memorable–humor seems to seep out of his pores like joy from a unicorn’s eyes. He is Continue reading DISGRASIAN’s Summer Reading: Lisanti Quarterly

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Why Don’t I Have a Paper Heart-On?

April 22nd, 2009 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

Overture Films announced this month that they will be distributing the indie-soft mockumentary Paper Heart, which follows Michael Cera’s real-life old lady, Charlene Yi, on a quest to understand love (a journey that, in onscreen life, leads her right to Cera).


If you happened to be paying more attention to the Presidential Inauguration than the Sundance Film Festival last January, you may have missed news that the film garnered a very positive response–pocketing the Best Screenplay Award–and not just because of offbeat, so-hot-right-now star cameos by Cera, Seth Rogen and Demetri Martin.

Why? IndieWire‘s Steve Ramos points at Yi:

If the great comedian Bob Newhart had an Asian American love child it would be Charlyne Yi. She’s the drollest comic working today and her deadpan style makes the comic documentary “Paper Heart,” premiering in dramatic competition at the Sundance Film Festival, a fresh, irreverent road comedy.

Since I adore both Bob Newhart, irreverance, and love children, I took a bit of time to watch the film’s trailer today [via Videogum]:

…and while my heart bursts (as always) every time Cera so much as says “um,” the teaser leaves me with not even an inkling to go see the film when it hits an eclectic theater near me. Worse, I now find myself stuck on a question I neither want to ask nor answer, and here it goes:

Why don’t I get Charlene Yi???

So many reasons to love her, as many of you probably do: She’s Asian-American. She’s a comedienne. She’s left-field and quirky, geeky and unafraid, doesn’t ching-chong jokes for easy laughs, doesn’t get fussy about her sloppy hair and moon face. The “New Kings of Comedy,” who I hail to, have championed her success. And I’m pretty sure that Jen loved her as an affable stoner in Knocked Up (prepare for an “Ed. Note” if I’m wrong about this)–and save for the one Yi exception, everyone knows I’m a freakin’ sucker for affable stoners!

But something in me (perhaps the something that can’t forget seeing her do criminally bad improv in Silverlake) doesn’t see her genius. It doesn’t “aww” when she scrunches up her wee little Yi nose. It won’t respond to the perma-grin that spreads across her face, like that other mediocre funnyman-of-the-moment Jimmy Fallon, whenever she’s delivering a flatironed laugh line. It doesn’t believe that her fun, fidgety shifting comes from the inside, that it’s all her own, instead of borrowed from her infectious boyfriend.

I don’t buy her deadpan. I don’t gobble her shifty comedy shuffle, which works so well for her male counterparts, when their off-script mumbling alone is enough to make their movies memorable. Does that make me sexist? Racist? Or just grumpy? I don’t really know.

All I know is that I just don’t get Charlene Yi. But I really wish I did.

[Hollywood Reporter: Overture to Release 'Paper Heart']
[Videogum: Paper Heart Trailerl]

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Thanks, Jonathan!

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Suckdance

January 21st, 2008 | 0 comments | Posted by Jen


Dear Paris,

Perhaps we’ve misjudged you and we have more in common with you than we’d previously imagined. Seeing you shred that Gibson Les Paul Guitar Hero controller at Sundance, we thought we could bury the hatchet by extending an offer to all play together. We’re thinking Face-Off or Battle mode in Expert would be sporting; you bring your own ax. We’ll let you pick the songs, although Diana’s partial to Stevie Ray Vaughn’s Pride and Joy and I’m kinda fond of Iron Maiden’s The Number of the Beast or that noodlefest Cliffs of Dover. Anything with tons of hammer-ons, impossible chords, and weird rhythms. The place is Jen’s house. You say when you want your ass handed to you.

hearts,
DISGRASIAN

And in other Suckdance news–Sandra Oh, one of the festival’s jurors–turned up to a Park City Event ready to go…bowling!?

Sandy, I know we said we would leave you alone for a while because you stood up for the writers and you just seem like a coolass chick. But what is up with those jeans, gurl? They give you thunder thighs, and I know you ain’t got thunder thighs. And..oh shit…what was I saying? I think I’m having a bad acidwash flashback. Did some of that Rit dye travel up your pants to your hair, too? Are those strike streaks? What would you call them, lowlights or highlights? I’m thinking lowlights. Very low. lights. If you turned them down just a hair (yuk yuk) or twenty, I think they would be perfect.

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