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Entries in Lena Dunham (10)

Wednesday
Apr192017

Goodbye to "Girls"

by Chris Feil

This Sunday HBO ended the six season run of Girls, Lena Dunham’s caustic and compassionate take on millennial Brooklynites. The series ended much as it began: with a wide range of qualitative opinions, as frustrating as it was rife with conversation points, uneven but special.

The final season was its the choppiest since its earliest days, often one of its more unsatisfying. After seeming primed to get her shit together at the end of season five, that charged feeling of a new life chapter was delivered in the unexpected form of Hannah’s pregnancy. Marnie was running out of gas as her divorce finalized and her music career was on its most pathetic last legs. Elijah inched closer to Broadway. Jessa took a backseat as a villain without much of a story, and Shoshana was barely there at all, even less than usual. Despite its comic stride holding up from the previous season, this season’s form felt sloppy and scattered despite Hannah’s long-game story arc.

Click to read more ...

Friday
Mar102017

Would you rather...?

Would you rather?

...attend Lupita Nyong'o & Dana Guira's joint Coming to America themed birthday party
... take a shower with Lena Dunham & Andrew Rannells?
... do a little ADR with Doona Bae for Sense 8 season 2
... dance with Goldie Hawn
... go a round in the ring with Jason Momoa?
... or try a swimming lesson with Sir Patrick Stewart and his foster pitbull Ginger ?

Photos to help you decide are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Feb112017

Nevertheless, She Tweeted

Happy weekend!

It's not exactly surprising that The Film Experience would feel inspired by Best Actresses but that's just what happened with the latest meme. And a Best Actress nominee even retweeted it so we should all feel inspired to resist and persist together, onscreen and off. After the jump amusing inspiring or curious tweets of the week including tweets on Beauty and the Beast, Hidden Figures, La La Land, Elle and more...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Dec232016

"Girls" Coming to An End

Chris here, with the beginning of the end for one of our HBO favorites. Lost in the shuffle of the latest in Lena Dunham's foot-in-mouth syndrome (something about abortion, I skipped the clickbait), is that the final season of Girls is upon us. You will remember that the previous fifth season was the show's very best, a peak for a show that has only consistently improved. How will the show top those creative (and Emmy-ignored) heights?

When we left off, Hannah and Jessa have yet to make amends over Adam, Shoshana was finally getting her career in order with Ray's coffee shop, and Marnie's tour was looking shaky. Now we have a season trailer to hint at how things might shake out! Girls' final season premieres on February 12, one week ahead of actress extravaganza Big Little Lies - Sundays are all about the ladies on HBO.

Which Girl do you think will get it together in season six?

Thursday
Jun092016

Emmy FYC: Best Comedy Series - Girls

Emmy nomination voting begins Monday. For the next week or two we'll be sharing FYCs of some kind. Here's Chris...

Once a series falls out of Emmy's favor, it's rare for a show to bounce back into competition when up against unwavering favorites and shiny new toys. No show on television deserves to be welcomed back as much as HBO's Girls.

This year's fifth season was the show at its most character-driven, putting aside its zeitgeist grabbing self-referential devices in favor of a more laid back pace. Though its downshift in cultural focus arguably took it out of the headlines, there's now more breathing room to keep the antics organic and the progressions satisfying. Each episode is a self-contained gem with the story lines flowing coherently between them while it takes characters to emotionally rewarding places. It's the kind of payoff you only get from a incisively directed show in its prime. It's the kind of payoff that only comes from a show that knows its characters to the core. [More...]

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Tuesday
Aug262014

Emmy Aftermath: The Repetitions, The Rules, The Fixes.

Well hear we are the day after the 66th Emmy Awards... or was it the 65th? or 62nd? or 60? It gets so hard to tell what with their refusal to spread the wealth. This number may not be 100% accurate but from my rough calculations anyone/anything who won Emmys last night had, on average, two previous statues.

No matter how great any one performance or show is, is it seems downright criminal to only honor that one thing. Think of how many people couldn't have Emmys for acting because of, say, Bryan Cranston's 5 statues for Walter White. I wish more voters would think of it that way. There's no argument among anybody who has watched it, even off and on like myself, that he didn't do great work but is his work 5 times greater than Jon Hamm's best work as Don Draper? 3 times greater than Michael C Hall's work as Dexter? And so on. He would have also prevented Kyle Chandler from that awesome tearjerking Friday Night Lights win had he been eligible that year. You just can't tell me his work is more valuable than all of those men combined and his Emmy run  blocked so many gifted actors from winning television's top honor. Same with Aaron Paul (3 statues) and Allison Janney (6 statues, 4 from one role). Julia Louis-Dreyfus is a slightly different case. She's a stellar performer (great in every series she's been in) but three statues is more than enough for the same performance especially when it means Amy Poehler's genius continues to go unrewarded. Yet at least Julia's 5 statues are distributed across 3 roles.

When you obsessively award one person over and over for the same performance you're really saying that nobody else in town is remotely of their calibre which is a depressing way to judge artistry, which is so subjective and has room for multiple conceptions of "Best". But perhaps the problem is in the voting process. (According to Gold Derby at least, voters rank the performances and whoever has the lowest score (i.e. you want first and second finishes, means that if you're everyone's second favorite you will probably win each and every year since the slightly more divisive series won't stand a chance. This could also explain why Modern Family just continues to hog Emmys though most critics think its glory days are long behind it. Maybe it's everyone's #2 and their number #1s are all over the place.)

"LESBIAN REQUEST DENIED" - Jodie & Laverne and several other OITNB nominees lost their categories.Though Emmy night wasn't at all interesting (I am reminded why I have never watched it religiously) the Emmy season was with all the controversies. For months there's been heated divisive arguments about Broadcast vs. Cable and whether they should be in direct competition. Official word is "we're not going to go there," that they'll never split up the categories. But couldn't some of the results in part have been about network TV actors finally rallying and saying 'enough with online and cable!'  HBO still led in actual wins  but it had very few televised wins so most of its triumphs were in the non-marquee categories. And Netflix, which has brought so much energy to the TV game, tanked. Orange is the New Black, easily one of the best and most-obsessed-over shows on TV, only managed two wins, neither of them televised. 

Herewith my proposal on how to fix the Emmys, to prevent all the controversial gaming of the system and the relentless repetition which does no service to an industry enjoying a lot of Golden Age goodwill. Every week on the internet you read about some new great achievement in television and everyone's top tens look different and people are just so excited with all that's on offer and every year at the Emmys the picture they present to the world is. 'We only make a few good shows. Sorry bout it.'

Proposed Rule Fixes

  1. No category hopping. Once you've submitted one way, you can't pretend you've become something else.
  2. Seriously consider best half hour series and best hour series instead of Drama vs. Comedy because nearly all the best work in any artform has both dramatic substance and a sense of humor. Orange is the New Black is hilarious but people kept being mad that it was placed in comedy because its drama is so effective. 
  3. If your name is in the opening credits you MAY NOT submit as a "guest" -- this is supposedly the guideline right now but very few actors follow it if they think they have a better shot at "guest." If you are in every episode, even if you're not in the opening credits, you MAY NOT submit as a "guest."
  4. Cap of three wins for any performance of the same role.
  5. Strict rules on number of episodes you must produce to qualify as anything other than a miniseries. I personally think the rule should be 10. How are shows with only 7 episodes competing in series? 

 Emmy really needs to lock down some rules about anthology series. Are they miniseries like AMERICAN HORROR STORY or regular series like TRUE DETECTIVE. It shouldn't be either or.

What do you think would help fix the Emmys? 

P.S. Here are my personal awards for last night's show

Best Duo: Julia Louis-Dreyfus & Bryan Cranston
Best Sports: The Mad Men actors who will complete this historic series with none of them ever having won for their terrific complex creations. And yet they show every year and smile and even endure the jokes about it now.
Classier Than It Often Is: In Memoriam
Dependably Funny Person Who Was Amazingly Funny: Amy Poehler
Dependably Funny Person Who Was Not at all Funny: Sarah Silverman
Most Ubiquitous Color: Orange (skin) vs Red (dresses)
Most Awesome Loser Reaction: Julia Roberts


Most Depressing Loser Reaction: Cicely Tyson 
Best Dressed: Lizzy Caplan
Hottest Arm Candy: Julianna Marguiles husband. In perpetuity.
Most Annoying Emmy Obsession: Seriously why even have a Reality category if you consistently ignore the really creative ones (hello RuPaul's Drag Race) and just hand The Amazing Race the prize ever year. 10 wins! Ridiculous
Most Satisfying Win: None. The closest would be The Normal Heart which I liked (but didn't love)
Happy Realization: There is room for at least a smidgeon of movement in next year's Best Drama races since Breaking Bad will be gone from all categories.
Bitter Realization: That won't help the repetitive factor in Comedy since Modern Family is still with us and still winning... and not just in the top category.
New EGOTs: None. And people we thought might edge closer (Julia, Cicely & Matthew) did not.

Photo that perfectly sums up Emmy night via Lena Dunham & Instagram