“I am more interested in what my friends think of me than what I think of myself” is the powerful line delivered by Troy Bolton in the denouement of High School Musical 2, which I finally watched this morning. Is that really supposed to be inspiring?

HSM2, as it’s known to the true fans, could either be a film that lacks self-awareness or is so self-aware it’s all a joke on us. Watching it, I would think it’s a parody of all cheesy musicals. The extreme overacting (I’m looking at you, Corbin Bleu), the hackneyed plot, the horrible musical numbers, etc. I also feel like some of the staging was so bad, why didn’t they reshoot the scene? Sometimes I had to turn away, especially during Zac Efron’s tour-de-force “Bet On It” dance through the golf course.

I don’t like to go on things based on stereotypes, but this was also one of the gayest movies I’ve ever seen. How can Ryan Evans NOT be gay? The fashion sense, the momma’s boy complex, he does musical theater, always hangs out with his sister. Sharpay is practically a drag queen with her makeup, costumes and over the topness. And pretty boy Zac Efron is basically molded from plastic during the movie and is practically the archetype of a twink.

Maybe the creators had this in mind, and wanted to make a campy parody movie. Or maybe they thought they were making a really good musical. Yikes.

And it has to be said, this one pales in comparison to the original, where the songs were catchy and well done, for pop songs. I wasn’t feelin’ any of the songs in this one, except maybe “Gotta Go My Own Way” because it was a bit cheesy and sounded like your archetypal broadway show-stopper.

This sounds like a Sweet Valley High Novel

I know we are still sitting shiva for the loss of The Suite Life of Zack and Cody since its cancellation, but it seems good news in on the horizon. The gange (minus Tisdale) are heading for the high seas!

In the new series, twins Zack and Cody Martin (Dylan and Cole Sprouse) and hotel heiress London Tipton (Song) enroll in a semester-at-sea program aboard luxury cruise liner the S.S. Tipton. Dutiful hotel manager Mr. Moseby (Lewis) follows to keep an eye on the boss’ daughter, who, along with the tourists and students attending classes on Deck Eight, must deal with the twins’ mischievous ways.

I couldn’t write a better pitch for a tv show if I tried. Aren’t the twins like eleven? Is it really appropriate for them? How will their credits tranfer? Who is running the Tipton hotel while Mr. Moseby is away? I wonder if the twins are addicted to heroin yet. This is keeping me up at night.

careful consumerism

Today I caught a showing of What Would Jesus Buy?, the documentary about overconsumption and the commercialization of Christmas, featuring a group I have followed for quite some time, Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping. I am not sure how much they get their word across, but their spontaneous performances and people’s reactions were interesting. I wish the movie showed more insights and solutions, but it was pretty eye opening anyway. How do we even start to change consumerism when people’s desire for low prices keep juggernauts like Wal-Mart in business? And if kids are fed consumerism and beg for the things they see, how can parents say no to this? Anyhoo, I consider myself a member of the church of stop shopping because anyone who claims that Mickey Mouse is the anti-christ is worth following.


Against my better judgement I saw Enchanted. Oh hell, who am I fooling, I intiated the whole outting. I needed something totally mindless and entertaining. Although I swore off Disney movies forever, I figured a Disney movie that makes fun of Disney movies would be good. They really did have a go at themselves, and the beginning animated sequence included every cliche in Disney movies. I am not sure if the kiddies will get the sardonic respresentation, but oh well. However, in true Disney fascism, they are equal opportunity offenders, where they showed stereotypes of “supposed” Middle Eastern cab drivers, angry black women, horny gay men, and practically crucifed the chipmonk. The whole love story thing made me cynical too- how did they really end up together? Does she even use the bathroom? How do they explain their relationship to people? And I don’t think that was part of the irony. Also, I am over Patrick Dempsey at the heartthrob. I was kind of on the bandwagon when he made his comeback, but I’m over it. I think they should totally re-release Loverboy.

But James Marsden, be still my heart, totally played the dumb prince to perfection. Check out the tights! My obsession with him is growing. I also saw Hairspray this weekend and passed a couple of Gap ads with him in it as well. His bone structure can solve world peace.

more proof that Disney is absolutely despicable

I sent this to many of you already, but I was really enthralled by this collection of the 9 most racist Disney characters ever. Lots can give the excuse that they were just a product of the era, that things were more “acceptable” then. I still don’t buy it.

This scene from Peter Pan is so out of control. The “Indians” ask how did the red man become red? It’s because a girl kissed an ancestor and he blushed. Permanently. When Peter Pan becomes “red” I had to hide under my chair. Goodness grief.

If I see giant owls to ride on, it will be over.

Lots of you directed me towards the news that Universal will open a Harry Potter themepark. Although it is certain I will go, I can’t help but wonder if it is really to continue the magic of the books, or to rake in more money? Both, I guess. Also, Disney was bidding for the rights and I am GLAD they lost! Disney, you can’t own everything. I would love to see a Hogwarts castle replica. Will there be actors walking around as Hogwarts characters? And Hogsmeade! So cool.

Here are some other attractions I hope to see:

  • Prof. McGonagall’s Wild Ride (you figure it out)
  • A roller coaster based on the Maurauder’s map
  • The veiled abyss (like the one in the Ministry) where you can push your child down and they can experience waking death.
  • A chamber of secrets simu-ride where you can virtually gouge out the eyes of a basilisk.
  • A recording booth where an engineer can turn your voice into parceltongue. For $39.99 you can take the cd home with you.
  • A restaurant that only serves the meat from magical creatures. (Like a hyppogriff burger)
  • A live musical stage show glorifying child abuse, starring the Dursleys
  • There will be two hotels on the grounds. One is where you can stay in a replica of Sirius Blacks’ house, and the hotel staff have to dress like house elves. The other is the economy motel, where you stay in replicas of a cupboard under the stairs. No bathrooms available. The shampoo and conditioner they give you will come in potions bottles, with “Hair by Snape” labels. Your express check out bill will be selivered by owl.
  • Similar to Epcot’s World Showcase, there will be a World Showcase including France (full of leggy blonds who shake their asses) and Bulgaria, where there are only men who sulk and grunt at you while wearing fur.
  • If you can speak in a convincing British accent the whole time, you can get 10% your admission price.
  • If you are there on your honeymoon, you can buy Harry/Cho costumes to walk around in. You can even have your wedding there, and the reception will be a recreation of the Yule Ball, and the honeymoon suite will look like Dumbedore’s office. Kinky, right?
  • As you get on the parking lot tram, someone will throw green powder on you to make you think you are traveling by floo powder.
  • A roller coaster where passengers sit in blue Ford Angila.

you can always count on Disney to ruin a good thing

Not that they were never about the money, but Disney is just so damn greedy, that when they have a successful idea, they milk it for all it is worth. Example: all the straight to video sequels of their classic movies. It’s shameful. And now that they have struck gold with High School Musical, they can’t let it be with the sequel. Now that have a spinoff called Haunted High School musical. And there was a traveling tour (sans Efron) and now…wait for it…High School Musical on Ice. Enough. I understand the purspose of a company is to turn a profit and market their items, but this just seems so blatantly greedy it makes me ill. However, I am stroked for the sequel. The plot looks fantas.

Sharpay Evans, the rich girl whom audiences loved to hate in the original movie, is on a campaign to woo Troy, the basketball coach’s son, away from Gabriella. The setting is a luxurious country club owned by Sharpay’s father, where Troy, Gabriella and their East High classmates have all landed summer jobs. Instead of a school musical, the source of conflict (and more than a few songs) is the club’s annual talent show, and Sharpay is scheming to get Troy to perform a duet.

The whole Troy/Sharpay thing comes out of nowhere, I thought she had some innapppriate shit going on with her brother.

Please hurry with that sequel, they all look about 30.

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More cheesy rehearsal pictures here.

Oh, and Zac Efron is a dick: “Personally, I feel no competition with the cast because I’m not going for the same things they are. A lot of them are doing teen music things, and tours, various TV deals and other Disney TV movies and Disney albums. That’s the last thing I want to be doing at the moment. I’m setting my sights a little bit higher.” Apparently that means playing Speed Racer.