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The 40 Year-Old Virgin: A Retrospective



January 17, 2005: Production begins on Judd Apatow’s directorial debut The 40 Year-Old Virgin.

February 14, 2005: Youtube launches.

July, 2005: Myspace is purchased by News Corporation for $580million. Within the year the site will hit its peak with over 75million subscribers.

August 19, 2005: The 40 Year-Old Virgin is released in North America. It opens at No. 1 grossing over $21 million in its first weekend. It stayed at No. 1 the following weekend, grossing an additional $16 million. The film received near unanimous critical acclaim, resurrecting the thought-dead R-rated comedy and skyrocketing the careers of star Steve Carrell and filmmaker Judd Apatow.

July 15, 2006: Twitter is launched.

September 26, 2006: Facebook is made available to all persons over the age of 13.

The 40 Year-Old Virgin is now a 12 year-old film, known and beloved by almost anyone who encounters it. We root for Andy from minute 1 as he finds love and friendship on his way to losing his virginity. In this social media/ PC comedy era, a film with an almost entirely white cast full of very raunchy, very NON-PC humor, still delights and charms with it’s camaraderie and kind love story, all building to an ending that literally sends you off singing and dancing.

The film never plays it safe. It’s opening gag is a middle aged man walking around with a troublesome morning erection. The scene immediately following has our lead character Andy conversing with a co-worker who has recently been to Tijuana, Mexico where he watched a woman have sex with a horse. “You know how I know you’re gay?” Paul Rudd asks (future mega-star) Seth Rogen over a friendly game of Mortal Kombat. “You have a rainbow bumper-sticker that says I love it when I have balls in my face.” Every scene of 40 Year-Old Virgin is full of quotable 1-liners (largely improvised on the spot) and memorable set pieces such as the drunken drive home which crescendos with Leslie Mann (Apatow’s wife) wrecking her car and vomiting on Steve Carrel right before offering to have sex with him.

Watching the film today, you think to yourself, “How did this ever get made?!” With a mostly unknown cast, a “virgin” director and a script so full of racey and risqué material, it’s hard to believe the film was such a big hit – a game changing classic still beloved today. How? How did this film make it to the screens? Some might argue it’s the film’s heart. For every boner and racial slur, there’s a kind caring sentiment. “You know, for so long I thought there was something wrong with me because it had never happened, but I realize now it was just because I was waiting for you,” Carrel laments after crashing through two-sides of a billboard on his bike. Some argue it’s the simple, relatable premise. Who doesn’t wanna lose their virginity?! A good argument is the breakthrough style of the film. What was essentially a typical rom-com with a sitcom premise, the film was heavily improvised with a loose narrative form that also took the time to fully flesh out its characters in believable and not always pretty ways.


All of these are valid reasons, but consider this: The 40 Year-Old Virgin was the last major studio comedy before the boom of social media. This film was a beacon in the last stretch of the TV and print era of marketing and promotion. If you wanted to talk about this film with your friends you either had to do it in person or through some kind of personal blog. You didn’t have a cellphone that you could log onto Twitter with during the end credits to sum up your immediate reaction in 140 characters or less. There was no Facebook post to make where your friends could click like to validate your reaction and experience. No, this film was blessed with being in that sweet-spot – the last hurrah of personal/private interpretation.

The film itself being made before the technological boom helped it as well. Phones are almost never used in the film. For God’s sake, Andy meets his love interest in the film as she buys a VCR! The drunk driving scene with Leslie Mann would be solved today with an Uber. Andy and his friends actually interact with each other. They go out into the real world to search for love. Even Andy’s love interest Trish – who makes a living off of eBay – still has a physical store for people to come through and make their purchases. “Life isn’t about sex.” Andy’s co-worker Mooj tells him. “It’s about love. It’s about connection!” The line resinates for our lead, but it also speaks to the entire message and desire of the film itself: true connection with another person.

12 years later, and the 40 Year-Old Virgin is still a beautiful and hilarious experience. A film released at a time much freer of judgement. A film made at a time where you had to interact with the people you encounter. The 40 Year-Old Virgin is not self conscious, not so self aware like the films of today. The paranoia of being in the public eye 24/7 with cellphones and social media is not present, therefore the characters are aloud to make mistakes. The film is a comedy of errors. Errors made in a search for connection to the people in your life. Couple all of that with the talent in front of and behind the camera, and you’ve got a film of low risk for the studio making great returns for more than a decade after its release. A classic. A game changer. And all of that from a typical rom-com with a sitcom premise. Today, everyone is a critic with a voice that can reach millions. The 40 Year-Old Virgin begs to ask, were films better when they were less conscious of judgement?

Written by: Joe Black

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‘Abigail’: Bite Me Harder Tiny Dancer



A gang of misfit kidnappers find their tiny target far more bloodthirsty than they bargained for! 

So, unfortunately, the trailers gave it away and let’s be real that’s why most of us are here, the knowledge that the kidnap victim Abigail (Alisha Weir), codenamed by the would-be kidnappers appropriately as ‘tiny dancer’, is in fact, a vampire. Not a spoiler, point of fact, one of the film’s actual great selling points. And the reactions from the misfit club when faced with a real actual f*cking vampire, range hilariously from the blunt “no such thing as vampires” all the way to, “Are we talking True Blood or Twilight rules or what?” all while covered in buckets and buckets of blood. 

Anyway, the gang manages to subdue and abscond with the aforementioned Abigail, in a pre-prepared duffle bag, like you do, and converge to a new location, a house oddly similar to the one she was just taken from. Welcomed and given codenames by a man who introduces himself as Lambert (Giancarlo Esposito), our misfit club is told to simply hold down the fort in this strange old house with the girl chained up in a room and one person to attend her, for twenty-four hours, and they’ll all get paid. 

As inevitable as the tides, the dopey druggie Dean (Angus Cloud) is the first to die, and we’re going to give that death-style points for inspiring terror right off the bat. The very controlling Frank (Dan Stevens, holy crap yes that is the guy from FXs Legion) is also of course the most suspicious – of everyone around him, sure, but also he himself is totes sus. We don’t learn terribly much about the musclebound tank who gets dubbed Peter (Kevin Durand), he’s your pretty typical little-brains-heart-of-gold muscle-for-hire any proper gang needs, right down to the bottle problem. Sammy (Kathryn Newton), well, even for being a purported hacker-type, she has, like, reality issues. Rickles (William Catlett), he’s arguably the most dangerous among them, ex-military and yet somehow here and involved in kidnapping for a few mills. Joey (Melissa Barrera) is our Final Girl, and though she has the inevitable problems in her recent past, she seems more capable of doing the hard thing and still somehow empathizing at the end of the day. Must be her burning desire to get back with her son. 

The fit hits the shan pretty quickly, and Abigail morphs from tiny dancer to tiny monster, though honestly, the way Abigail spoke the entire time in the film, if the ‘nappers had been paying close enough attention, would have been a solid clue. The performance from Alisha Weir as Abigail is incredible, as she literally dances a fine line between comedy, tragedy, and outright monstrosity. With a face full of makeup and the force of a tiny tornado to back it up, Weir brings to mind the great performances of the vampires in 30 Days of Night who saw the practicality in the need to trap their food, but also, play with it a bit first before feasting! Anything else would give away the absolute fun time that is Abigail, so you should go see it, out in theaters now!

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Scrubs Reunion: The Band Gets Back Together



Fans of the beloved medical comedy series Scrubs were recently treated to a thrilling surprise when John C. McGinley, who portrayed the iconic Dr. Perry Cox, dropped a photo on Twitter hinting at a potential reunion project. The image, showing McGinley alongside his former co-stars, sparked a wave of excitement and speculation among fans who have been longing for more adventures with the beloved Sacred Heart Hospital staff.

While details about the reunion project are still scarce, the mere possibility of seeing the gang back together again has sent waves of nostalgia through fans who fondly remember the show’s original run from 2001 to 2010. Scrubs was not just a sitcom; it was a heartfelt exploration of friendship, love, and the chaotic world of medicine, all wrapped up in a quirky and often hilarious package.

At the heart of the show was the bromance between JD (played by Zach Braff) and Turk (played by Donald Faison), whose antics and deep bond served as the emotional anchor for the series. Their dynamic, along with the sage wisdom (and relentless sarcasm) of Dr. Cox, provided viewers with memorable moments that have stood the test of time.

As we eagerly await more news about the Scrubs reunion project, one thing is for sure: it’s time to dust off those old DVDs, rewatch our favorite episodes, and get ready to welcome back our favorite gang of doctors, nurses, and janitors for what promises to be a memorable reunion.

But Scrubs was more than just its main characters. The supporting cast, including the eccentric Janitor (played by Neil Flynn), the neurotic Elliot (played by Sarah Chalke), and the wise-cracking nurse Carla (played by Judy Reyes), each brought their own unique flavor to the show, creating a rich tapestry of characters that fans grew to love.

While the photo shared by McGinley has fueled speculation about what the reunion project might entail, whether it’s a one-off special, a new season, or something else entirely, one thing is certain: fans are eagerly awaiting any opportunity to dive back into the world of Sacred Heart Hospital.

In an age where reboots and revivals are commonplace, Scrubs stands out as a series that has the potential to recapture the magic that made it a fan favorite in the first place. With its blend of humor, heart, and unforgettable characters, a reunion project has the opportunity to not only satisfy longtime fans but also introduce a new generation to the joys of life at Sacred Heart.

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‘The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes’: Rebellion with a cause



The story of the rise of Coriolanus Snow, from teenage Capital City pawn to rising Dictator of the Hunger Games! 

Apparently no one out here in post-apocalyptic Panem has heard of irony and so they name their children things like Coriolanus (Tom Blyth), Tigress, and further off in Hunger Games lore, after swamp plants like Katniss. Corio’s father was a legendary general and that is pretty much the only reason young Snow and his meager family of grandmother called Grandma’am (Fionnula Flanagan) and sister Tigress (Hunter Schafer) are tolerated here in the Capital City at all. 

Most of the snotty youngsters at the academy won’t let Snow forget how far his family has fallen, but he’s generally not concerned with them. What is concerning is the strong disapproval of the drugged-up Dean Casca Highbottom (Peter Dinklage) and the creepy attention of Dr. Volumnia Gaul (Viola Davis) as she lurks in the classroom sniffing out talent. The Dean feels very strongly the annual Hunger Games should end, while Gaul is violently adamant that not only do the Games continue, but that they get as much more attention as possible. And young Snow is stuck in the middle, when the yearly prize money normally awarded to the academy student with the best grades gets switched out for, you guessed it, the student that can make this years’ Hunger Games as entertaining as possible. 

Whilst the students are protesting this sudden change, the annual Reaping is about to commence, and big shock and surprise, Corio’s candidate from District 12 Lucy Grey Baird (Rachel Zegler) is chosen as a Tribute. This is where the film begins to really take off on musical wings, for as it turns out, Lucy Grey can sing. Boy, can that gal sing! She can sing, she can play guitar, she can work a crowd, she can calm things down, she can fire ‘em up too! And Corio, being no dummy himself, instantly plots ways to use his Tributes amazing voice to draw attention to her, and admittedly his own, plight! 

Though far too many people sneer at the idea, Corio takes his position as Mentor to his Tribute seriously enough to sneak onto the tram taking the Tributes to their habitat, which turns out to be a completely appropriate moniker, as this year the Tributes are held before the Hunger Games in a large zoo habitat so the weatherman ‘Lucky’ Flickerman (Jason Schwartzman), host of this years games, can MC the hell out of everything up close and personal! 

What happens at this years Hunger Games and the subsequent consequences to both Corio and Lucy Grey is actually only half the story, and the movie. Coriolanus has always had to be opportunistic, but learning to be absolutely ruthless when necessary under the tutelage of Dr. Gaul, who basically thinks it’s always best to be merciless, is an eye-opening education indeed.  Even after they’ve both been consigned to military service and his friend Sejanus Plinth (Josh Andres Rivera) decides to finally rebel, Corio and Sejanus continue to deceive each other and themselves, to accomplish their separate goals. Not even the love Corio swears he feels for Lucy Grey can save him, or them, from the adamant absolute necessity of the Hunger Games continuing. And after all that’s happened, Coriolanus Snow has gotten a terrific education in the best way to be the absolutely ruthless next Hunger Games advocate, and oh yeah, President of Panem. 

The movie does itself no favors by trying to stuff not one but two major storylines and a bunch of side storylines sadly introduced and then ignored, into the film. It would have been entirely possible to turn Ballads of Songbirds and Snakes into two different movies, separated between feathers and scales if you like, and do justice to the major storylines in both. Blyth gives a fine  performance as a young Coriolanus Snow, but the fact that President Snow is played by Donald Sutherland in all three of the Hunger Games films means Blyth has incredibly large shoes to fill. Rachel Zegler as Lucy Grey is absolute fire, and yes the actress did sing the songs in the film herself, including the Hunger Games franchise epic song, ‘The Hanging Tree’. Every time Lucy Grey opens her mouth and sheer soul-searing music comes out, it provides a distinct counterpoint to the soul-crushing ambition of Coriolanus Snow and further demonstrates the District and Caste separation Hunger Games is known for. And if, by the end of the film, Coriolanus Snow has come to agree that the Hunger Games must continue but perhaps under his own auspices, he has no one but himself to blame when another younger but still rebellious female blows it all up in his face! 

Choose rebellion or conformity for yourself in The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes

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