Friday, February 10, 2012

Pop Culture Roundup

We watched Everything Must Go this week, starring Will Ferrell as a guy whose struggles with alcoholism cost him his job. He comes home to find his stuff strewn all over the front lawn and the locks on the house changed, with his wife nowhere to be found. After a few days, he decides to just have a big yard sale. Included in this are interactions with various neighbors who help look after him. Ferrell's character eventually sums up the embarrassing aspect of his troubles by saying, "My problems are here on the lawn for the world to see while the rest of you can hide in your houses." Ferrell already showed that he has dramatic chops in Stranger Than Fiction, but he does well here again, even though the movie is a bit too understated at times.

We also watched Abduction, starring OMG TAYLOR LAUTNER~! as Nathan, a kid who discovers that the people who raised him aren't his real parents. Unfortunately for him, that discovery involves the CIA, rogue foreign agents, and lots of guns and explosions. The movie doesn't pretend to be more than it is: a brainless action flick. It's a simple plot with suspect acting from the lead character, which given the role doesn't necessarily matter. Lautner is well-suited for it at this point in his career since he's still rocking his Twilight abs and he's not exactly ready to tackle Shakespeare. The supporting cast inexplicably includes the likes of Alfred Molina, Sigourney Weaver, Maria Bello, and Jason Isaacs, who all at least seem to be having a fun time.

The WWE Royal Rumble happened a few weeks ago, officially beginning the Road to Wrestlemania (my favorite time of year, wrestling-wise). The match itself, which features 30 guys entering every few minutes each, was won by Sheamus, which I thought was a surprise. The past few years there have only been a handful of believable potential winners and Sheamus was on that short list, but I was expecting Randy Orton or Chris Jericho. Then the next night on Monday Night RAW, The Undertaker returned to challenge Triple H to what will be their third Wrestlemania match, and Jericho began having it out with CM Punk. With all that plus Rock/Cena, this is already shaping up to be a good Wrestlemania.

We watched the Super Bowl this past Sunday. While the game itself was a pretty good one (props to Michigan's own Mario Manningham for his brilliant catch that helped the Giants win), there were some good commercials as well. The quality in general seemed down this year, but there were still a few that I thought were great. Here are probably my three favorites. Oddly, they're all for car companies.

Hyundai's "All for One:"

Volkswagen's "The Dog Strikes Back:"

Chrysler's "Halftime in America:"