It's time for the eagerly unawaited year-end awards column, which, like everything from Million Dollar Baby to War of the Worlds to The March of the Penguins, will be narrated by the mellifluous tones of MORGAN FREEMAN. Or it would have been had he not been busy narrating the upcoming feature War of the Million Dollar Baby Penguins. So let's forgo narration and simply dive into 2005's best and skankiest in fabulous awfulness and rotten-assed bliss. The voiceover-free (and glory-exempt) FELIX AWARDS go to . . .
Worst feel-good euphemism of the modern age: "He transitioned." Pleasehe croaked! Dropped dead! Kicked the giant KFC bucket! Went 6,000 feet under! Is pushing up rotted daisies! Turned off the night-light! And he won't be a-comin' back! Learn it, face it, and move on, oh differently mentally abled person.
Biggest disappointments: JUDE LAW cheated with the nanny, then burnt SIENNA welcomed the bastard back; JACKO jurors declared the star not guilty then suddenly started wondering otherwise; the pope transitioned, then they appointed a new one. Kidding! I love the new onehe's great copy.
illustration: Glynis Sweeny
Clichés ready for retirement: Stick a fork in itit's done; I didn't get the memo; he drank the Kool-Aid; I can't wrap my mind around that; he's straightit's his dick that's gay; if you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much space; she should have her own zip code.
Movies that by all rights should have been better:The Interpreter, Bewitched, and even some things without
NICOLE KIDMAN. Stick a fork in hernah, she's doin' fine.
You know you've seen way too many movies when you realize:The Wedding Crashers was better than The Wedding Planner and The Wedding Date, if not quite up to par with The Wedding Singer. God, Hollywood has range.
Interesting movieland insight: Airplane terror and anxiety about the well-being of children remained the two biggest cinema topics (both subliminally fueled by lingering terrorist fears). Cannily enough, JODIE FOSTER cashed in on both with Flightplan. Alas, critics said it reeked.
Lessons learned from the tidily moralistic An Unfinished Life : J.LO'S character once had a mishap at the wheel and killed her hubby; Camryn Manheim once looked away at the moment she could have saved her daughter from drowning; ROBERT REDFORD was once so drunk he failed to protect Morgan Freeman from a grizzly bear's paws (not to mention narration jobs); and you once wasted 10 bucks, 50 cents, and two hoursor, more likely, 40 minutes.
The year's gayest movie: No, it wasn't Brokeback Mountain. It was Chicken Little. No, really. Trust girlfriend. But that wasn't the year's gayest s/m romp. That would be Jarhead. Again, don't doubt Mama or she'll slap you.
How to ruin a date: Start shrieking, "I can't wait to see Cheaper by the Dozen 2! I've waited so long for that movie! I'm gonna see it right after I catch up with Yours, Mine & Ours!"
How to lose a friend: Screech, "I just decided the war in Iraq is morally wrong! It's totally based on lies and should be stopped! What a travesty!" Pleaseeven Republicans agree with that now. Only HILLARY CLINTON doesn't.
Enough: Wildlife documentaries (The March of the Penguins, Deep Blue) that employ sweeping orchestral music and grandiose narration (sorry, Mr. Freeman) as they show scads of wet critters to be magnificent and profound in absolutely every little thing they do. You don't see any bowel movements or bleeding gumsthat wouldn't be all that majestic, would it? No, you're just presented with pure grace and adorableness every step of the way, and I have to say I can see whythose animals are so fucking cute! I completely change my mind. Keep the movies coming!
But back to human biology: Actor TOM SIZEMORE was caught using a Whizzinatora fake wee-wee complete with someone else's urinewhen he went for a drug test. Sizemore indeed.
Another unwanted lesson in body science: On the big day of testimony against him, master showman Michael Jackson claimed to have back pains and went to the emergency room, showing up late to court in pajama bottoms and slippers. As a result, I was promptly hospitalized with severe stomach cramps and life-threatening projectile vomiting. I almost transitioned. (And that's the last time for the transitioned joke. Promise. It's transitioned. It's croaked! It's dropped dead!)
Something I'll surely never order again: Chicken fingers at Wendy's!
Orange alert: To this day I wake up screaming, thinking I'm still surrounded by those freaking CHRISTO/JEANNE-CLAUDE gates, hung with what looked like giant shower curtains, filling every inch of my beloved Central Park. That much bright orange should never be allowed outside Osceola County.
An exchange I would have loved to see on TV: Martha Stewart: "You're fired!" Firee: "Oh, yeah? Well, you're under house arrest!"
Most shameless whores: The mass media, who'd previously walked on eggshells in addressing TOM CRUISE's offscreen life. They were suddenly joined in snark, as they gleefully deconstructed TomKat with cynicism aplenty. Why so bold, pray tell? Because Tom wasn't hooked up to a powerful, big-time publicist anymorehe had signed his own sister to represent himso they weren't afraid to rock the boat the way they had been during all those oozily polite years of bowing and scraping. And these people have a right to cry, "No integrity!"?