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Thoughts on "The Bank Job" . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Monday, March 31, 2008 15 comments

Worth Full-Price, Matinee or Rental: Matinee or rental. It's been a wasteland at the theaters since the beginning of 2008, so that's probably why I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. Still, I would only pay a matinee price as the entertainment value lines up nicely with that dollar amount. It would also make an excellent rental.

Will I Own It On DVD: No. But I would watch it one more time when it comes on HBO/Cinemax/Showtime.

1) I generally enjoy heist movies, and the fact that this film was a period piece based on a true story gave it an interesting twist. The story is set in London in 1971, a backdrop for a bank robbery which is put into motion to steal back incriminating photographs of Princess Margaret involved in an island threesome.

2) With a plethora of high-tech heist films in recent years (see "Ocean's Trilogy", "The Score," "The Italian Job," etc), "The Bank Job" is decidely old school as these amateur thieves just want to drill under the bank vault with a jackhammer. I respected the simplicity.

3) That being said, the the actual robbery was lacking in drama. I felt there should have been a few substantial challenges with the plan itself, but instead, the film focuses the dramatic tension on the fallout from the theft. It successfully manages to convey the problems of making a clean getaway, however, they could have upped the ante starting with the actual heist.

4) Jason Statam performs well as the leader of the small-time group of villians, whose members also include a photographer and a part-time porno actor among others. Saffron Burrows is the femme fatale involved in the heist for her own reasons. Personally, I didn't question her motives too closely as I simply found her very sexy and thus tended to give her the benefit of the doubt.

5) "The Bank Job" also showed just what a swinging time it was in London in the early 70s. It seems that everyone was having sex. Some was kinky and some was semi-distasteful to their parents, others were simply straying outside the bounds of marriage and it seems that most government officials were living it up in high-end brothels compelete with dominatrix chambers. In this last regard, it seems that not much has changed since that time period.

If you enjoy heist films, and have been waiting for months to return to the theater, then you could do far worse than "The Bank Job." It is an extremely competent movie with a solid cast that gave me an enjoyable two hours on a rainy Sunday afternoon.


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Quick Hit Friday . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Friday, March 28, 2008 20 comments

"You keep runnin' that mouth I'm gonna' take you in the back and screw ya'," - Josh Brolin, "No Country For Old Men"

Let the punishment fit the crime I always say or maybe I stole that from somewhere else. It doesn't really matter as another week is down, and I've got an empty loft this weekend to enjoy.

But before I stock up on Negro Modelos and shed my pants, let's look at the tough stories of the week such as:

"The Hills" star Audrina Patridge, 22, claimed a series of steamy photos which ended up online this week were meant to be creative yet never seen by the public.

"I intended them to be artistic and not in any way provocative," Patridge writes on her MySpace Celebrity page of the snaps, which include her posing with an arched back in a plaid, schoolgirl-like miniskirt and white knee socks.

Personally, I can't wait until Patridge intends to take some provocative photos, but in the interim, her art shots will have to suffice.

Pamela Anderson ended another brief marriage this week as the "Baywatch" star's nuptials with Rick Salomon were officially annulled Monday, according to documents filed in Superior Court. The documents listed fraud as the reason for the annulment but did not include further details.

Salomon and Anderson, 40, were married Oct. 6 in Las Vegas then separated Dec. 13.

Anderson was infuriated when she learned that Salomon used a body double during his sex tape session with Paris Hilton, and once she discovered his deception, the marriage was fraudulent and finished.

A Dublin man has been released on his own recognizance by a New York judge after being accused of stalking supermodel/talk-show host Tyra Banks for several months.

The New York Post reported that 37-year-old Brady William Green was arrested last week after visiting the studio where "The Tyra Banks Show" is taped, carrying a duffel bag stuffed with magazine articles about Banks and asking to speak to her.

During sentencing, the judge expressed his disbelief that there was "a person living in this world who loved Tyra Banks as much as she loves herself."

People magazine reported Jamie Lynne Spears, 16, has received a diamond ring from hometown beau Casey Aldridge, 18.

A Spears family insider tells the magazine that the swelling "Zoey 101" starlet, who is reportedly about six months along, is excited. "She's got an engagement ring," the source deadpans. "She's been showing it off, talking about it."

Since revealing her pregnancy to OK! in a December cover story, Jamie Lynn hanging out with friends and earning her GED.

The engagement ring nearly completes the Spears parenting master plan of having your daughter become a teenage mother, then earn her GED and finish it off by getting engaged. I have no children of my own, but certain items in that cycle seem out of order to me.

Richie Sambora was arrested on a DUI charge in Laguna Beach, Calif this week after the Bon Jovi guitarist was pulled over about 10:52 p.m. Tuesday night.

Police said they spotted him weaving on the road as Sambora was driving a Hummer and was with three unidentified women, one adult and two juveniles. Sambora is scheduled to appear in court on May 7.

It is rumored that Sambora told the cops he was sober and "It's My Life," and also claimed he simply ingested some Bad Medicine to which the cops replied that he was "Living on a Prayer."

Robin Williams filed for divorce from his wife of 19 years, Marsha Garces Williams, this week on grounds of irreconcilable differences.

Apparently, the differences reached their breaking point when Robin made Marsha watch "Patch Adams" for the 12th consecutive night in a row.

Priscilla Presley confirmed this week that she was one of the high-profile victims of an Argentine plastic surgeon who conned women into injections of a low-grade silicone in 2003, claiming it was better than Botox.

"Priscilla Presley was one of many documented victims of Dr. Serrano," publicist Sam Mast said in a statement released Tuesday. "An investigation which uncovered his misconduct ultimately led to his imprisonment. Ms. Presley dealt with this matter years ago and everything is well."

Everything is well except the ripples on her face, Mast later added.

In other health news, Demi Moore told talk show host David Letterman that she had tried the Leech treatment in Austria as part of a detox plan.

Moore said: "You watch it swell up on your blood... then when it's super drunk it just kind of rolls over like it is stumbling out of the bar."

Moore's fondness for blood-sucking parasites might finally offer an explanation for Ashton Kutcher as well.

As always, let's end with a gold image like:

I've always appreciated a limber body as the possibilities are endless. So, remember that anything is possible, unlock your body from its cage and . . . Happy Friday!


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Bathing With The Drunken Viking . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Wednesday, March 26, 2008 21 comments

{This is the Eighteenth in a recurring series that will only happen when I have consumed far too many spirits with my brother. Last night, a few pitchers of Bass were consumed which triggered strange thoughts, candid insights and pure horseshit. Selah.}

* Assume the worst at highway gas station restrooms

* Always cheat at Monopoly

* Early morning sunlight is the best way to tell if a woman still looks good

* Never have sex wearing socks - you look ridiculous

{Editor's Note: This is NOT me pictured.}

* Sleeping with your friend's sister is OK.

* Brush your teeth at least twice a day, shower the same amount

* Don't ever personally discover that a Cleveland Steamer can be performed outside of Ohio

* Crying at television commercials is a warning sign of an unbalanced life

* Always threaten people verbally so the evidence cannot be used against you in a court of law

* Comb-overs only lead to embarrassment for the wearer, and breed animosity or laughter for the general public

* "An alcoholic is someone you don't like who drinks as much as you do." - Dylan Thomas


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The Worst Bathroom In The World . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Monday, March 24, 2008 22 comments

Somewhere south of Waco and west of Interstate 35 sits a towering Smiley-Face sign that is evil.

My brother and I witnessed its venom first-hand yesterday during our drive back to Austin. We had been on the road for more than four hours, and desperately needed a bathroom break when we crested a hill and were confronted with the sign.

It seemed perfect. The gas station beneath the Smiley-Face offered an easy exit with an equally simple way to return to the highway. We parked, and entered feeling confident that this would be a relief, an oasis of good intentions belied by the sign out front.

{Editor's Note: This was not the gas station in question.}

We couldn't have been more wrong.

Five feet outside the bathroom door, the odor began to waft and caused my nose to twitch. But nothing could have prepared us for the horror which awaited once the door was opened. I felt like I had stepped into the toilet from "Trainspotting" except that this bathroom was full of them.

The smell was pungent and ripe. It nearly knocked you down as the air was thick with trapped, heated gas. I staggered sideways towards the bank of urinals, where I discovered that two out of the three available weren't working and the one that was in order had a trucker standing in front of it.

Ignoring the trash bags that covered the non-working urinals, some sick bastard had still decided to take a shit in one of them. What kind of sick animal craps in a urinal I wondered as my brother motioned towards the stalls.

My brother won the lottery in the stalls as his toilet was only covered in rotting piss. This was a best-case scenario because mine was filled to the brim with shit. Feces had breached the water line and risen like a vile wave on a angry day at the ocean and was threatening to exit the entire bowl.

Where do the employees of this hell-hole use the bathroom, I thought to myself?

There was nowhere to run, and no place to escape so I proceeded to urinate on this heaping pile of human filth while alternately reading some of the ugliest graffiti I've seen in awhile. Most of the messages extolled the virtues of Hispanic pussy, although amidst the misspellings and lewd suggestions, someone had drawn a nicely realized unicorn which provided me a certain calmness in the face of the abyss.

Still, the whole situation was too much and I started to cackle. It began as a small laugh, then eventually erupted as I felt myself losing my grip on reality. I heard my brother flee his stall and this horrible bathroom and I managed to follow suit without touch anything on the way out.

We were both shaken from the ordeal as we stepped into the fresh air waiting outside.

Nobody said anything for the next 20 miles of highway driving as we both realized just how lucky we were to have survived. The Smiley-Face was a cruel joke, its perverse laughter rang in our ears as we made our way back into Austin, alive and well but forever changed by a gas station restroom that should be burned to the ground.


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Quick Hit Good Friday . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Friday, March 21, 2008 17 comments

"This is a serious exercise. It's like an SAT question. Which one is going to get to the hundred dollar bill first? The male-friendly lesbian, the man-hating dyke, Santa Claus, or the Easter bunny? " - Jason Lee, "Chasing Amy"

I already used a quote from this movie a few months ago, however, it was the only one featuring the Easter Bunny that came to my mind. It's Good Friday, and I've got driving to perform as I have to visit family who live more than six hours away from Austin.

Easter is usually an ugly holiday due to such traveling over a short period of time, but with the appropriate music and some Cadbury creme eggs, it will all work out fine.

Before I hit the road, let's look at the important stories of the week such as:

A judge awarded Heather Mills a total of $48.6 million Monday in the financial settlement of her divorce from former Beatle Paul McCartney. A document released by the Family Court said the judge awarded Mills a lump sum of $33 million plus the assets she currently holds worth $15.6 million.

Following the closed hearing, McCartney was heard complaining loudly that "she wanted an arm and a leg from me and she got it."

Halle Berry gave birth to a baby girl Sunday, and "is doing great," her publicist Meredith O'Sullivan told The father is 32-year-old model Gabriel Aubry, and the pair met while shooting a Versace ad in Los Angeles two years ago.

I feel sorry for that little girl as she is going to be so damn ugly when she grows up with such an inferior gene pool to work with.

Ashley Alexandra Dupre, the call girl at the center of the Elliot Spitzer sex scandal, saw a $1 million offer from "Girls Gone Wild" to pose nude in a magazine be withdrawn after the company discovered videos of a semi-nude Dupre, now 22, in its archives.

The company plans to sell them on its Web site, a company spokesman said.

This is just another reason not to get drunk and show your tits for free - always charge money - as it could cost you a lot more cash one day when you've become a high-priced escort and taken down a major public figure.

Shia LeBeouf became a fugitive from the law Tuesday after he failed to appear in court to face a ticket for smoking where you're not supposed to.

The actor was caught smoking a cigarette on the street of a protected shopping district Feb. 18 in Burbank, CA which was in violation of a local ordinance. A publicist for the 21-year-old "Transformers" star had no comment on the bench warrant other than to say LaBeouf didn't have legal representation for such matters.

LeBeouf was arrested earlier in the year for loitering at a Walgreens store while allegedly drunk.

One of these days, LeBeouf might actually get in trouble with the law for a real crime which doesn't make him look silly and ridiculous.

Lurid video stills began circulating earlier this week, showing what some have claimed is “Sex and The City” star Kristin Davis, caught in an explicit act.

A representative for Davis told Access Hollywood it is not the actress featured in the racy video images.

I'm not convinced the pictures are actually of Davis having sex in a city, however, it's hard to credibly deny them when you've been on "Sex in the City" for many years - life imitates art.

Since we're talking sex, let's end with an image that is a reversion, but still interesting:

I don't find this sexy per se, however, it is impressive and the only image I had available to me. So, make do with what you have over Easter, make it a big holiday and . . . Happy Good Friday!


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Happiness Is A Large Penis . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Wednesday, March 19, 2008 17 comments

I had a friend in middle school who used to slam his dick inside drawers.

He claimed it made his penis bigger. Although we never saw him perform this act, he swore repeatedly by his method and the results supported it. The guy had a big dick - at least for sixth grade - and was prone to wagging it around the locker room in unabashed displays of penal projection.

We fell out of touch as high school approached, so I'm not sure if his dick slamming continued to enlarge his appendage or if he just hit puberty early.

I was reminded of this guy and his penis when I recently read an article in GQ, Details or Esquire which claimed that men with big dicks are nearly invincible to life's follies. The message was that owning a super-sized Johnson insulated you when times were tough. Apparently, an enormous cock allows you to laugh in the face of danger, remain confident when faced with adversity and approach women with diplomatic immunity.

One quote read something like "I've seen my friend, who has a 9-inch penis, remain upbeat in the fact of situations the would have crippled nearly any other man with an average-sized penis."

I have my doubts about this theory.

One reason is that the last time I heard anything about my sixth grade friend, he was living in a shack somewhere near the Florida Keys. Another is that a large penis is not something that you can often put on display or use to make money when the rent is due unless you plan to dabble in amateur pornography or perform tricks for $20 a pop under the freeway.

It can certainly be nice to know that you're packing heat below the belt, however, that knowledge is of little comfort if you let the rest of your life go to shit.

The article claimed that possessing a sizable tool enabled the man to laugh at life in general and stay positive. I think that staying upbeat in the face of adversity has a shelf life - big dick or not.

Then again, if you've been reading this blog for awhile, you might have noticed that there is very little negativity and a lot of laughing at life its ownself around here. Think about it.


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Don't Drink Green Beer . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Monday, March 17, 2008 15 comments

Two years ago, I was lucky enough to spend St. Patty's Day in Ireland as my good friend had the foresight to schedule his wedding to overlap with the event.

Both the wedding, and the holiday celebration were excellent as the Guinness flowed freely, people were generally in a good mood and many songs were sung which kept the crowds riled up. I was unsure of the exact lyrics as the pubs were loud and the accents strong, however, I stood with the masses pint after pint.

In America, I still enjoy St. Patty's Day, although the holiday morphs into a good excuse to get drunk in the middle of the day and utilize embarrassing Irish accents. I plan to do neither today. It's raining in Austin today, and with the Easter holiday coming up later this week, I have work to do.

But in case it's possible to shirk or postpone your duties for a cold Guinness, here's some tips that I've learned over the years:

1) Never drink Green Beer.
2) I repeat - never drink Green Beer

3) Don't let a female you're trying to pick up drink green beer as it looks horrible coming back up and is difficult to clean
4) Always have a professional make your Black and Tan for you

5) Don't pinch anyone at your office - especially females - who aren't wearing green unless you want to visit your HR department
6) Consider pinching people at bars who aren't wearing green, but keep it playful
7) Watch "Michael Collins"
8) Don't ask any short men you encounter about pots of gold or Lucky Charms - there's no humor there

9) Listen to the Clancy Brothers
10) Guinness does taste better in Ireland

Happy St. Patty's Day.


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Quick Hit Friday . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Friday, March 14, 2008 21 comments

"It's so damn hot! Milk was a bad idea," - Will Ferrell, "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy"

Luckily, this week has passed quickly, an occurrence that I badly needed after raking myself over the coals last weekend. South by Southwest has now descended on Austin, and that means that I will not be drinking margaritas at Guero's, eating Tex-Mex at Trudy's or having breakfast at Magnolia Café until the chaos dies down.

But before I can find any adequate substitutes, let's examine the hard news of the week such as:

Lisa Marie Presley's lawyers say they plan to sue British newspaper the Daily Mail after it published an article suggesting that the singer had developed an "unhealthy appetite" and "has gained weight like her father Elvis."

Presley, 40, revealed the real reason for her expanding waistline - she's pregnant - to PEOPLE on Thursday

Her lawyer, Simon Smith, said: "My client is deeply upset and offended by this article, especially as it was widely published just as she and her family were meant to be celebrating her happy news."

Smith also said the Presley will be asking the Daily Mail to reimburse her for her mental suffering with 227 fried peanut butter and banana sandwiches.

Heather Locklear is fine following a hoax suicide attempt alert at her California home on Saturday night, according to her representative.

A spokesperson for the star says, "(I) spoke with Heather and she is fine. She never requested medical assistance and did not place a 911 call. Nor did anyone from her house call 911 or place a call requesting medical assistance."

To be safe, I have offered Locklear a clean, quiet stay at my loft in Austin for any rehabilitation she might need.

Dawn Wells, who played Mary Ann on "Gilligan's Island," will be serving six months of unsupervised probation after allegedly being caught with marijuana in her car.

She was sentenced Feb. 29 to five days in jail, fined $410.50 and placed on probation after pleading guilty to one count of reckless driving.

In her defense, she claimed that she needed the dope to cope with "all those people who thought Ginger was hotter."

Britney Spears will reportedly guest star in a forthcoming episode of the CBS sitcom "How I Met Your Mother." The 26-year-old pop star will play a doctor's receptionist named Abby who becomes smitten with the main character, Ted.

This role will be a marked departure from real life where people tell Spear's children that " I met your mother barefoot and buying cigarettes at a gas station" or "I met your mother when she ran over my foot outside of a Starbucks."

Michael Jackson reached an 11th-hour deal to refinance his troubled Neverland Ranch, his lawyer said Thursday, which will void the scheduled upcoming auction of the property.

Jackson attorney L. Londell McMillan told The Associated Press the pop star has worked out a "confidential" agreement with Fortress Investment Group LLC allowing him to retain ownership of the famed property in Los Olivos, Calif.

McMillian also said that Jackson "realizes he's been Bad, but that he's faced The Man in the Mirror, has decided - though won't disclose - whether he's Black or White and was excited that he was able to win back the property in a Thriller."

"Girls Gone Wild" video empire founder Joe Francis pleaded no contest to child abuse and prostitution charges Wednesday under an agreement allowing him to go free after nearly a year in jail.

Francis, 34, returned to Florida after posting a $1.5 million bond this week in Nevada, where he is awaiting trial for tax fraud. The hearing in Bay County state court resolved his 2003 criminal case involving the filming of underage girls during spring break on Panama City Beach.

"I have never committed any crime. I pleaded guilty just to get out of jail," said Francis.

I'm no prison expert, but I imagine that Francis did a lot more than lift his shirt during his jail stint, which may or may not validate your views on Karma in this world.

Let's not end with any unpleasantness in the penal industry, and instead, focus on the positive like this:

I generally loathe sweeping the stairs, but I might make an exception in this case. So, feel free to clean in odd areas today, be careful descending from steep places and . . . Happy Friday!


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Spitzer Swallows It Whole . . .

Posted by 2 Dollar Productions Wednesday, March 12, 2008 19 comments

Eliot Spitzer sounds like a porn name.

I always thought this to be true of the New York Governor, but now, if things play out like I think they will, Spitzer might have to resort to an adult industry to make the rent after this high-priced escort scandal. If you've been sniffing glue or hibernating for the past two days, Spitzer is facing calls for his resignation after being linked to the prostitution services of the Emperor's Club VIP.

“I have acted in a way that violates my obligations to my family and violates my, or any, sense of right and wrong,” the governor said. “I apologize first and most importantly to my family. I apologize to the public to whom I promised better.”

According to the affidavit, Spitzer paid $4,300 for an appointment that began on Feb. 13th, and ended at 12:02 a.m. the next day. The report also indicated that Spitzer had used the prostitution service before, although it was unclear how often he dipped his hand in the cookie jar.

The Associated Press has reported that Spitzer has paid out $80,000 to the service for past performance.

Ignoring the potential moral and legal ramifications of this allegation, I want to simply focus on the economic factor because $4,300 seems like a hell of a lot of money for an escort. For that kind of cash, I would expect at least 3 women, some party drugs and a vat of whipped cream or I would feel ripped off.

Even if those items were thrown into the mix I would spring for some black market Viagra to make sure I had more than one or two bullets in the chamber. If I'm shelling out $4,300 then I'm making a long night of it.

The other issue I had with Spitzer's arrangement was that he apparently flew this escort from New York to Washington D.C. This seems like an unnecessary expense, and one that must have upped the price tag. If you needed a prostitute in D.C., I would imagine you could find a plethora of high-end services which were local rather than situated on the Coast.

Quite simply, if Spitzer couldn't make better monetary decisions when it comes to high-end hookers, how could he ever balance a government budget?

He might not get the chance as the wolves are nipping at his heels for his impeachment or resignation. It doesn't take a mystic to predict an ugly outcome, however, I am still amazed at the money it takes for a high-end escort these days.

It must be a rarified circle that you move in when $4,300 for a night of fun seems reasonable, over and over again.


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