Welcome to The Kolb Review; a daily blog covering all the pop-culture you could handle.

Expect some guest posts from our pop-culture liaison Leora Horowitz and sports and movie man Moshe Kolb.
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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Why I Hope My Bachelor Party Can Live Up To the Best.

With my bachelor party coming up, it got me thinking, what are the best Bachelor Parties from all of cinema.

Honorable Mention

A Guy Thing (2003): Jason Lee is marrying a nervous woman who is not a good match for him at all. Things get complicated when he wakes up after his bachelor party with another woman, Julia Styles, who just so happens to be a cousin to his bride-to-be. This is a fun, cute, and lighter bachelor party film.

American Wedding (2003): There are tons of hilarious moments in the American Pie films. One of the best was when Stifler (Seann William Scott) throws Jim (Jason Biggs) a secret bachelor party on the same night and place where he's having dinner with his future in-laws. Naked woman and extreme awkwardness ensues.

Sideways (2004): This wasn't the biggest bachelor party ever, just Paul Giamatti taking best/only friend Thomas Haden Church to wine country before he marries into a well-to-do family. Virginia Madsen and Sandra Oh are perfect as women of interest and Alexander Payne's script is smart and engaging. This is a very good film.

5. Very Bad Things (1998): This Peter Berg directed film has a slew of stars, mostly before their prime. (Jon Favreau, Christian Slater, Jeremy Piven) These best friends all go to Vegas for a bachelor party, only to have a hooker get killed in the process. Some say the first half of this film inspired "The Hangover," but the second half fades badly. I may have even stopped watching 75% into the film.

4. The Best Man (1999): This film is packed with stars. (Taye Diggs, Terrence Howard, Nia Long, Harold Perrineau, Sanaa Lathan and Morris Chesnut) This entertaining film features everything you would want, drinking, fighting, girls and even a cat named Fandango. Worth checking out.

3. Clerks II (2006): Kevin Smith needed to make this sequel, even if it didn't come close to the original. His burger-flipping friends threw an epic bachelor party, donkey included. Rosario Dawson is fetching as the love interest and the Lord of the Rings-Star Wars argument is a classic comedic moment. A bestiality bachelor party, cant get better than that.

2. Bachelor Party (1984): This is what started it all. Tom Hanks is given one of the best bachelor parties ever. With his fiance’s ex trying to ruin everything and disappointed dad watching carefully, this film has it all. A she-male named Tim and a mule make an appearance in this hilarious and epic bachelor party film.

 1. The Hangover (2009): This film has forever changed bachelor parties and the expectations that come along with it. The absolutely hilarious film starring Bradley Cooper, Zack Galifinakis, Ed Helms and great support from Ken Jeong, Heather Graham and Mike Tyson, is the best ever. Almost every single moment is laugh out loud funny and this film propelled Galifinakis to new comedic heights. His performance rivals that of Anchorman and School of Rock.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Why Raul Ibanez’s Historic Night Is One of The Best Walk-Off Homers of My Lifetime.

Raul Ibanez was the hero on Wednesday night. His 9th inning game tying homerun was a shocking turn in the game. With A-Rod due up, Joe Girardi decided to bench the hall of famer for the 41 year old platoon player. Ibanez stepped up and crushed a 1-0 pitch over the right field wall. Only two innings later, Ibanez won the game on the first pitch of the bottom 11th. He crushed the pitch to the second deck in right. Not only was it such a crazy sequence of events with A-Rod being benched; but Ibanez’s clutch performance came at a time when the Yankees were in threat of going down 2-1 in a series where they seemingly can’t score any runs. This was a huge huge walk-off moment for the Yankees and if they go on to win the series and move on to the World Series, this will surely be the defining moment. Though Ibanez’s walk-off is surely one of the top ten I have seen in my life-time, I had just too many others to list. So here are the (other) top 10 Walk-Off Home Runs in the MLB Playoffs in my lifetime.

10. Jeff Kent
The 5th game between the Cardinals and Astros in the 2004 National League Series was an all-time great pitching duel. Woody Williams allowed one hit through seven innings while Brandon Backe allowed just one hit through eight. Eventually, the game came down to the bottom of the 9th where Kent blasted a three run homer of Jason Isringhausen to move the Astros within 1 win of the World Series.

9. Alfonso Soriano
2001 was a magical year for the Yanks. It all started in game 4 of the ALDS. The Yankees were up 2-1 against the Mariners and game 4 was another great duel. The score was 1-1 through 8 innings with each team amassing only 1 hit. After Rivera breezed through the 9th, Soriano crushed a pitch deep to center field, sending the Yanks to the ALCS and ultimately the World Series vs the Diamondbacks.

8. Nelson Cruz
After failing to win the World Series the year before, the Rangers were facing the Tigers last year. In game 2, with the game tied 3-3, Cruz stepped up in the 11th inning and crushed a walk-off grand slam. This highlighted Cruz’s crazy postseason of 6 homers and 13 RBIs.

7. Jim Edmonds
Ya, remember this guy. Well a day after Jeff Kent hit a walk-off for the Astros (see #10), Edmonds returned the favor. After the Astros tied game 6 in the 9th with a score of 4-4, Edmonds crushed a three run homer in the 12th, which ultimately propelled the Cardinals to the World Series.

6. Bernie Williams
Bernie, the all-time leader in post season HR and RBI is sure to make this list at least once. In 1996, the Yankees and Orioles faced off in the ALCS. Game one was a tight 4-4 game headed into the 11th inning. Bernie stepped up to the played and rocked a Randy Myers pitch into the bleachers, earning the Yanks an early series lead.

5. Chris Burke
The Astros and Braves faced off in the 2005 NLDS. With Houston holding a 2-1 series lead, the teams faced off in a game 4. The Braves were looking to force a fifth game with a 6-1 lead in the 8th. The Astros then scored 4 in the 8th and headed down one run in the 9th. Brad Ausmus tied the game with a solo shot in the 9th. The game then continued for another 9 whole innings where in the bottom of the 18th inning, Burke launched a 2-0 pitch over the fence. His shot ended the longest post season game ever and clinched the series for the Astros.

4. Bernie Williams
Only a few short years later, Bernie continued his post season dominance. The Yanks faced off against the Red Sox in the 1999 ALCS. With the game tied 3-3 in the 10th, Bernie Williams hit an inning lead-off walk-off homer. This set the tone for the Yanks who won both the 1996  and 1999 series in just 5 games on their way to two World Series titles.

3. David  Ortiz
This one hurts to put on but is deserving. The Yankees exploded in the first three ALCS games against the Sox, earning a 3-0 lead. But in the bottom of the 9th down to their last out, the Sox tied the game. Then in the bottom of the 12th, Big Papi himself crushed a Paul Quantrill pitch for the walk-off. This started the greatest comeback in sports history as the Sox pulled off 4 straight wins on the way to their first World Series in 86 years.

2. David Freese
The Rangers were clearly on their way to the World Series Championship, right? Wrong. Twice, down to their last out, Friese came to the plate with the game on the line. In the bottom of the 9th, he hit a game-tying triple and then in extra innings, he belted a walk-off Homer after the Cardinals had tied the game. Friese has become an instant hero in the world of sports and his heroics helped the Cardinals earn their 2nd title in the past decade.

1. Aaron Boone
The 2003 ALCS between the Yanks and the Sox was a slugfest. This fight to the end was the infamous Pedro Martinez. The Yanks were down late before Pedro was left in too long, ushering a Yankee comeback. The amazing 8th inning comeback was topped a few innings later when Aaron Boone led off the bottom of the 11th. After Rivera pitches his 3rd scoreless inning, Boone who barely had a hit the rest of the series, crushed a Tim Wakefield knuckleball over the left field wall. This was without a doubt the most exciting Yankee and baseball moment over the last 20 years.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Why There Have Been Some Horrible Calls in Sports History.

We all know what happened two weeks ago in the Packer-Seahawk game. The question is, where did this call fall among the worst calls in Sports History?
Honorable Mention

 Eric Gregg's wide strike zone
Umpire Eric Gregg rings up Fred McGriff to end Game 5 of the 1997 NLCS on a pitch from Livan Hernandez that appears to be a foot outside. The Marlins beat the Braves in the series and go on to win the World Series.

10. Thanksgiving Day coin flip flap
The easiest call in any football game is the coin flip, right? Well, for referee Phil Luckett, the coin flip is a nightmare during a 1999 Thanksgiving Day game between the Steelers and Lions. As the game goes to overtime, Steelers captain Jerome Bettis calls "tails," but Luckett hears "heads." The Lions win the toss and go on to win the game. The NFL will change its procedures for the coin flip after the snafu on national television.

9. Mike Renfro ruled out of bounds
Officials rule Houston wide receiver Mike Renfro is out of the end zone on a fantastic catch at Pittsburgh in the 1980 AFC championship game. Replays show Renfro was in-bounds, but officials rule the pass incomplete, and the Steelers go on to a 27-13 victory that sends them to their fourth Super Bowl.

8. Jeffrey Maier assists Jeter home run
The Yankees beat the Orioles 5-4 in Game 1 of the 1996 ALCS when 12-year-old fan Jeffrey Maier reaches over the fence and catches Derek Jeter's flyball to right before Baltimore right fielder Tony Tarasco can make a play. Umpire Rich Garcia, who has run out to the right-field wall, fails to call fan interference on the play and rules the ball a game-tying homer. The Yanks go on to win the game on Bernie Williams' homer in the 11th.

7. Maradona's "Hand of God"
In what Argentinians refer to as the "Hand of God" goal, Diego Maradona rises up between two defenders and punches the ball into the goal to help Argentina beat England in a 1986 World Cup quarterfinal. The referee doesn't notice the hand ball, and the goal stands. Maradona gives the play its name later when he says the goal was scored "partly by the hand of God and partly by the head of Maradona."

6. Brett Hull's skate in the crease
In a play that will live in Buffalo infamy, Brett Hull gives the Stars the Stanley Cup when he beats Dominik Hasek for the series-clinching goal in the third overtime of Game 6 of the 1999 finals. Of course, every Sabres fan in the universe has been screaming ever since about how Hull's skate was in the crease before the puck, but the refs fail to make the call or ask for a replay. Before the next season, the NHL will change the "skate-in-the-crease" rule in reaction to the play.

5. Denkinger calls Orta safe
In arguably the most controversial call in World Series history, Don Denkinger calls the Royals' Jorge Orta safe at first base in the ninth inning of Game 6 of the 1985 Series against the Cardinals. TV replays show that St. Louis pitcher Todd Worrell had clearly beaten Orta to the bag, but Denkinger's call sets the stage for a two-run Royals rally in a critical 2-1 victory. Kansas City goes on to win the Series in seven games.

4. Colorado's fifth down
Colorado comes from behind to beat Missouri 33-31 in 1990, scoring the game-winning touchdown on "fifth down." Officials fail to count a down when the Buffs spike the ball to stop the clock and mistakenly give CU five cracks at the end zone. Colorado's score comes on the final play of the game.

3. Touchdown!?!?!?!?!?!
The ending to the Packer Seahawk game was shocking. In no way whatsoever could any normal person assume that this was a Touchdown. The ball was clearly intercepted and the image of two referees giving conflicting call signs will go down in horrible referee history.

2. Soviets get extra time in 1972 Olympic hoops
The U.S. men's basketball team suffers its first loss in Olympic history when officials put time back on the clock twice in the final seconds, allowing the Soviet Union to score a basket at the buzzer and win the gold medal with a 50-49 victory in the final of the 1972 Games.

1. Near Perfection
A young up and coming pitcher, Armando Galarraga took the mound on June 2, 2010. The Detroit Tiger pitcher pitched 8 2/3 innings before a grounder changed everything. The 27th batter hit a slow grounder to Miguel Cabrera at first. Cabrera flipped to the covering Galarraga who clearly beat the baserunner completing his perfect game. Sadly, Jim Joyce saw the play differently and called the player safe; thus ruining the Perfect Game. Joyce subsequently apologized for making the wrong call and was sincere in his tearful apology.