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<p>What are all of these people looking at?&nbsp; Chances are, better movies than they appeared in during 2011.</p>

What are all of these people looking at?  Chances are, better movies than they appeared in during 2011.

Credit: Warner/A View Askew/Disney

Watch: Gay-baiting crazies and floundering franchises all part of the 10 Worst Films Of 2011

Some well-liked voices hit sour notes this year

Just as 2011 delivered some delirious highs, there were also some moments of jaw-dropping wrong-headedness, movies that aimed high and failed completely, and ineptitude on a level that is almost infuriating.  If we're passionate enough to pick the ten films that did everything right, you can bet we're passionate enough to pick the ten that got it all wrong.

I considered titles like "Jack and Jill," but the Happy Madison stuff is such a uniform sort of terrible that I find it hard to work up the energy to truly hate them.  I may think the "Twilight" films are terrible, but "Breaking Dawn" is so well-made that even if I don't like the text, I can respect the wrapping paper they've put it in.

No, to make this list, a film had to really spectacularly fumble it all, and if you throw in some truly nasty subtext, you've got a winning combination.  I dislike every single one of these films in an active and engaged way, and I have no interest in ever sitting through any of them again.  The great part about the end of the year is that you can put awful movies like this in your rearview mirror and move on.

But not without one more kick to the ribs...

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<p>&nbsp;Michael Buble</p>
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 Michael Buble

Who will have the No. 1 album over the holiday? Michael Buble or Adele?

Who will be the only artist to debut in the Top 10 on the Billboard 200 next week?

As seems only fitting, Michael Buble’s “Christmas” album looks like a sure shot to continue to be No. 1 over the  holidays as the No. 1 stocking stuffer is projected to sell up to 450,000 to top next week’s Billboard 200.

That means that his album of seasonal standards now pushes past Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” to be the second best-selling album of all of 2011 after Adele’s “21.” That’s some handsome feat, considering the album didn’t come out until Oct. 15 (compared with Adele’s February release and Lady Gaga’s May street date).

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<p>Jeremy Irvine in &quot;War Horse.&quot;</p>

Jeremy Irvine in "War Horse."

Credit: Touchstone Pictures

Round-up: 'Tis the season to be... snarky?

Also: Craig on switching from Bond to Blomkvist, and 'Moneyball' tech talk

One more sleep until Christmas, a day when the usual social restrictions on kitsch, sentimentality and sugar of all forms are lifted, as we all revel in shiny objects, soft lighting and Frank Capra movies. Not coincidentally, it's also the day Steven Spielberg's unabashedly saccharine "War Horse" is opening -- but many displeased critics aren't affording it the customary seasonal leeway, taking the film to task for its chocolate-box styling and blatant emotional manipulation. But is it the film that's too cynical, or the critics? Taking into account other schmaltzy recent releases, including "We Bought a Zoo" and "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close," Sasha Stone ponders the challenges of selling sentimentality in the 21st century. [Awards Daily]   

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Bérénice Bejo in "The Artist"
Bérénice Bejo in "The Artist"
Credit: The Weinstein Company

'The Artist' leads with 9 Alliance of Women Journalists nominations

'The Help' and 'Shame' also do quite well

The Alliance of Women Film Journalists have released their nominations which heavily favor Oscar frontrunners such as “The Artist” and the “The Help” but also honors some lesser served films, such as “Shame” and oddly enough “Melancholia” (which was selected as having The Worst Female Images In A Movie by the Women Film Critics Circle earlier this week). Though I agree with the large majority of their selections, I also find myself feeling as though several of the categories undercut rather than support the overall goals.

I know Actress Most In Need Of A New Agent is meant to be in good fun, but it feels petty and out of sync with the tone of the nominations. Movie You Wanted To Love But Couldn’t is a bit muddied. “Drive,” “Sucker Punch” and ”Young Adult” do not belong in the same category as far as I’m concerned. More to the point, is the criteria that you wanted to love it but when you saw it you realized it was a well intentioned but overstretched, convoluted mess of a thing taken on by someone without the emotional maturity to handle the cinematic endeavor ("Sucker Punch"); or that you wanted to love it but it just isn’t your cup of tea?

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<p>Chuck (Zachary Levi)&nbsp;and General Beckman (Bonita Friedericy)&nbsp;team up.</p>

Chuck (Zachary Levi) and General Beckman (Bonita Friedericy) team up.

Credit: NBC

'Chuck' - 'Chuck vs. the Santa Suit': Super man, too

A familiar face returns for a fantastic Christmas episode

A review of tonight's "Chuck" coming up just as soon as I record a message of love on an electronic bear...

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<p>Michelle Williams won yet another Best Actress prize for her performance in &quot;My&nbsp;Week with&nbsp;Marilyn.&quot;</p>

Michelle Williams won yet another Best Actress prize for her performance in "My Week with Marilyn."

Credit: The Weinstein Company

Oklahoma critics march in step, spring for 'The Artist,' Clooney and Williams

And 'Transformers' isn't THAT bad

The Oklahoma Film Critics Circle has spoken up and added nothing to the precursor conversation, going with a slate of typical winners. Most annoying, they totally got their "Obviously Worst Film" and "Not-So-Obviously-Worst-Film" awards mixed, but whatever. Check out the full list of winners below.

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Brian Burkhardt of "Project Accessory"

 Brian Burkhardt of "Project Accessory"

Credit: Lifetime Television

HitFix Interview: 'Project Accessory' winner talks Kenneth Cole, sleep deprivation and shoes

Brian Burkhardt has big plans for life post show

Okay, I still think Brian Burkhardt's swimwear-look necklace in the final challenge of "Project Accessory" looked like cotton balls on a chain (hey, judge Ariel Foxman thought the thing looked like it was going to hatch, so I'm not alone). Still, Brian took home the grand prize of $100,000 and bragging rights that his unicorn horn handbag will soon be carried in Kenneth Cole stores everywhere. Having had the chance to rest up from five grueling weeks of competition, the Florida-based sculptor-turned-designer was a lot more fun on the phone than I expected (on the show, he seemed more serious and focused, which might be why he won the whole shebang). Here's what the big winner had to say about his stint on reality TV.

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<p>Beyonce made Melinda Newman's top singles list twice.&nbsp; Who else made the list?</p>

Beyonce made Melinda Newman's top singles list twice.  Who else made the list?

Credit: AP Photo/Matt Sayles

My Top 20 Singles of 2011: Adele, Nicki Minaj, Lady Gaga and much more

Newcomers and veterans make the list

This year was a decent year for singles. We can't say there were that many songs that consumed us; instead, there was a nice consistency where a broader number of artists, from all genres, supplied us with a steady ration of tunes that made it fun to turn on the car radio and wonder what ear candy would come on.

As you can see, my list also touches on many different genres. Like most folks, music comes at me from all different directions and I long ago stopped listening (or dismissing) music from any one specific format.

As disparate as these songs are, what they all have in common is that there was something compelling in each of them; something that kept me listening to them over and over and drawing me to them, whether it was the beat or a riff or a vocal performance or a lyric. Plus, my criteria is that they all had to be released to radio as singles.

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Top Ten of 2011: A year of Los Angeles films and superb style

Top Ten of 2011: A year of Los Angeles films and superb style

Which franchise surprisingly made the list?

Aren't you glad that's over?  Yes, 2011 was clearly one of the more mediocre and likely unmemorable years in cinema in quite awhile.  Sure, there were some amazing films released over the last 12 months, but it was much easier picking the top five pictures on my year end list than the second five.  It was just one of those years.

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No Oscar Talk this week

Happy Holidays

Anne and I are taking the first (much-needed) week off of the season from the podcast today. So we'll be back 12/30 to close out the year with our 75th (if you can believe it) episode. So enjoy the holidays, whatever you're doing, and enjoy a week off from our rambling nonsense.

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<p>Lana Del Rey</p>

Lana Del Rey

Watch: Lana Del Rey premieres 'Off to the Races' and heads to 'SNL'

Then three songs became four songs

Lana Del Rey has a full-length album due in a month, granted, but it seemed a little absurd when, this week, it was announced she'd be joining "Saturday Night Live" (Jan. 14) as a musical guest, two weeks before "Born to Die" drops on Jan. 31. She's released only three songs.

OK, well, make that four, if one were to include pop parody. Because that's what "Off to the Races" is, or sounds like.

Taking a nod to from Rihanna, the singer adds a little dub cadence to her vocals for the verse, before taking on karaoke campiness and ending the refrain with a squeak toy. This is a wordy word track, some narrative and some nonsense tumbling out into found footage of girls-and-guns. And, again with the blood, the religious imagery and guys with tattoos making kissy. I see some themes, but not much substance here.

So just add me to the hater pile-on. The late-'90s power dark-dance groove doesn't do much for me, not compared to the impeccable produced "Video Games." Vocally, Del Rey is still carving out her character.

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<p>Rihanna</p>

Rihanna

Watch: Rihanna gets touchy in 'You Da One' music video

How many looks does the pop star rock?

In her latest music video, pop star Rihanna has her way... with herself.

In an ode to her lover, the Def Jam singer made clear her erm positions on several key cultural uh touchstones. She also sports her newly minted bottom-teeth grill and gives an instructional guide on smoking sexily in four different looks, which I will call: "Clockwork Orange," full-body fishnet, glamor-puss and "nothing at all."

It's easy to see why "You Da One" was chosen as the second single from Ri-Ri's latest "Talk That Talk": while "We Found Love" takes listeners to Ibiza, it's safe to drag them back to the beginning -- the beginning of the album -- in Dr. Luke style with a shock of Caribbean flavor. The video matches the sounds simply. There's some lyrics, there's some sex and some Rihanna self-referentials. Pretty. Standard.

What do you think of the video?

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