The Oscars are four days away, so I thought I’d repost one of my favorite blog entries from 2009: Miss Pink Slip’s Out-of-Work Oscars.
While “Up in the Air” was obviously not on this list, it is certainly the current crown-bearer of unemployment movies. But there are many others! As I said last year, grab some popcorn, hit Netflix and settle in for inspiring education in unemployment. The first of my favorites are listed below:
1. The Full Monty– Six unemployed British steel workers create their own “Chippendales” act in hopes of earning some serious cash. Chaos ensues, but when their pants finally come off, the women go wild and the dollar bills (er…pounds, Euro, whatever) are aplenty.
Moral of the story: Get creative and use your resources (but keep your pants on, please).
2. Mr. Mom– Michael Keaton’s Jack is let go from his job as an auto engineer. Wife Caroline (Teri Garr) returns to the job market, becoming the primary breadwinner and leaving Jack to run the household. Chaos ensues (crazy poker games for coupons, a night out with the girls at “Chippendales”, etc. etc.), Jack battles with the washer/dryer and a vacuum, but he learns to make a darn good grilled cheese with an iron and ends up finding happiness at home.
Moral of the story: Find your strengths in unexpected situations.
The Toy – A bratty kid purchases an underemployed reporter/janitor (Richard Pryor) at a department store in the hopes of using him as a “toy”. Desperate for cash, said reporter takes the job, chaos ensues and the man is perpetually humiliated through a series of antics. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8DCSATF1gBg
Tootsie– Unemployed New York actor (Dustin Hoffman) goes drag to land a role on a popular soap opera. Chaos ensues. Unexpectedly, the character becomes a huge success and Hoffman falls in love with his female co-star (Jessica Lange). In turn, everyone falls in love with Hoffman’s “Dorothy”, including a male co-star (George Gaines) and his love interest’s father (Charles Durning). Utterly confused and humiliated, everyone discovers the ruse and everything plays out. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khCLA5RnxCI
Moral of the stories: Never knowingly humiliate yourself for a steady paycheck.
5. Erin Brockovich – Unemployed mom of three (played by Julia Roberts) meets lawyer Ed Masry when he represents her in a car accident suit. He loses the case, and because she’s out of cash, Roberts’ character guilts Masry into giving her a job as a legal assistant. Chaos ensues, and Masry fires her over and over again. Erin Brockovich remains persistent in her goal and, ultimately, ends up a hero, earning a boat-load of dough for herself, Masry and an entire town. Plus, she punishes a really bad chemical company.
Moral of the story: Be prepared to make sacrifices and be persistent.
This has nothing to do with unemployment, job hunting or the recession, but it has everything to do with the formative years for many readers of this blog.
Iconic writer, producer and director John Hughes died of a heart attack yesterday in New York City at the age of 59. Everything I can say about him has already been written, so with that, please indulge me as I salute this filmmaker with my own personal list of
“Top 10 John Hughes Hotties”.
I’ll remember John Hughes best for bringing into my life some of the cutest guys I’ll ever know. Thanks, Mr. Hughes!
- Jake Ryan – If ever there was a guy I wanted to sit on my dining room table with, eat birthday cake with and give my underwear to, it’s him. God — the Porsche, the cute rolled jeans, Top Siders and sweater vest. I get giddy and girly just thinking about him!
- John Bender – He was the kid in my high school who listened to Metallica and Slayer all day long while smoking cigarettes in the parking lot…and these days, I wish I could go back in time and date him! BTW–I love Judd Nelson and his dark hair, eyes and prominent nose. Just love him!
- Steff – It’s well documented in this blog how much I love James Spader’s snobby, detestable Steff from “Pretty in Pink”. The linen suit, smirk, feathery blonde locks…I met a guy one night at Automatic Slim’s in NYC, and he was Steff in the flesh. I hit on him so hard it was embarrassing. We did make out, though. Eureka!
- Cameron Frye – Everyone loves Ferris. It’s too easy. But, Alan Ruck’s pathetic Cameron stole my heart. He was just pitiful. I felt sorry for him, wanted to hold his hand and take him to prom.
- Chet Donnelly – Asshole. But, a hot asshole. Bill Paxton is a mighty good looking man. I might have eaten a greasy pork sandwich served in a dirty ashtray just for him.
- Jake Briggs – How precious was Kevin Bacon’s Jake Briggs in “She’s Having a Baby”? Pitifully being forced to have sex on a schedule while having nightmarish visions of his in-laws critiquing his performance? However, it was his attic-dwelling, cigarette smoking writer persona I fell in love with.
- Davis McDonald – Do you note a pattern of bad boys here? Davis, played to perfection by Alec Baldwin, was Jake Briggs’ slimy friend and might be the sleaziest pal ever put on the face of the Earth. However, this was Alec Baldwin of the 80s, and no matter how smarmy he was, he was hot!
- Jack Butler – Michael Keaton’s “Jack” from “Mr. Mom” makes a surprising appearance on this list. I think it was the way he fought for his woman, the adorable Teri Garr, as she was practically molested by her boss Ron, played by Martin Mull. Or maybe it was how he made a grilled cheese with an iron and battled for his kid’s woobie with a vacuum cleaner. Either way, love him.
- Anthony Michael Hall – I don’t list a character name here, because everything Anthony Michael Hall was in seemed to begin with this red-haired boy as a total goon who became an endearing doll. The way he manuevered the Rolls? So adorable. Writing a brilliant treatise for Dick Vernon in study hall? Smart and insightful.
- Long Duk Dong – Really. Was there ever any doubt he would make my list?