Sunday, May 18, 2008

Random dialog in B minor

“Have you ever thought of quitting?” she asked.
“No, not smoking. Smoking doesn’t make you wreck your car, doesn’t make you say or do shit you regret later, or lose your wallet. Smoking just kills you, it’s harmless.”

Friday, May 16, 2008

I'm a dork...please don't read if you're a hot woman.

I hate being disappointed by movies, I take it almost personally. Ok, I do take it personally, “Surely, it will get better,” I tell myself as I continue to sit through a clearly doomed picture, refusing to move. But then crying, “How could they do this?” as I cry on the way home. I can only remember walking out of one movie in my life, Krull, way back in ‘83. I’d like to say that it was so horrible that I couldn’t stand it, but it couldn’t have been worse than 10,000 B.C., which I sat through.
No, the truth is that I walked out of Krull because Stephanie Bates was chewing on my ear and whispering what she was going to do to me when we got back to the car…so, out we went.
Anyway, what the hell was I talking about? Ah, yes, the disappointment that a bad movie can bring. A bad movie on tape or disc is no problem, I’m far more adventurous in that regard and will rent movies I’m not sure about because if I don’t like them I can turn them off, or just wander in and out while cleaning, or writing.
But going to the theater takes commitment, in time and money (cost today for three with snacks: around $35.00), so I was a little nervous about seeing Speed Racer today, especially after reading reviews of how bad it was. It flippin’ rocked.
I think a lot of reviewers forgot something, the film is based on an old cartoon, an old cartoon that, though I liked it as a kid, I find nearly unwatchable as an adult, and were expecting something more dramatic, darker. I bet these critics also hate the 60s Bat Man TV series because it made the Caped Crusader out as a joke and “ruined” the comic book series for two decades after. Again…cartoon, get the F over it.
I think Speed Racer is beautiful; the colors, the animation, great actors doing a superb job with campy dialog and pulling it off, making it fun to hear, and race tracks that look like every eight year old boy’s wet dream of a Hot Wheels setup. The movie hit all the right notes for me with regards to referencing the original material, and all anime since, and never once in two hours and fifteen minutes of run time was I bored.
In fact, if you liked the campy Bat Man, if you’ve ever gone shopping for pink plastic flamingos to piss off the neighbors, if you secretly love some music that you hope none of your friends find out about, I think you will leave the theater after more than two hours of bright, flashing, roller coaster simulation-like racing action as I did; slightly nauseous, but giddy and ready to go again.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Caution, post contains partial nudity!

By Sunday whatever shreds of dignity I had left were tenuous at best. My third night straight of going out, of laughing way too much at my own humor (ok, the humor of Jake Kasdan and Judd Apatow, “One, I’m the King. Two, watch out!”), and dancing like a drunken extra in Pulp Fiction. Actually, I was drunk, and I have been an extra, although not on Pulp Fiction, on 21 Grams, so I think that does give my body of work some credibility and honesty.
Unfortunately, my rear of my jeans was being held together as tenuously as my dignity as I held my nose and went under for the second time, doing a poor impression of the swim while dancing with a pretty young woman.
The rip was audible.
I stood immediately and clasped the hole together with my left hand while moving around the wall back to our table. The rip felt like, and was later confirmed by independent witnesses, to be approximately six inches long. Have I mentioned that I rarely wear underwear? It’s a habit I learned while in Viet Nam and I don’t want to talk about it.
There was no way to hide the rip except to stay seated the rest of the night, and I didn’t see that happening as the only other male at the table was already acting like Eeyore and refusing to dance, so I concocted a crazy story, “Hey, I ripped the hell out of my pants with my huge ass. I’m going to change, I’ll be right back.”
They bought it, and I walked out of Lucy’s with my head held high, my rip flapping, and as I walked back to the CafĂ© the cool breeze felt really, really good on my bare ass.

Friday, May 9, 2008

In which our hero reveals how much of a geek he is and uses an inappropriate number of parentheses.

Ok, for those of you who haven’t figured it out, hot actress in a tight, revealing costume on the DVD box does not mean the movie is going to be good. How I haven’t figured this out by now is beyond me. I’m an optimist, I guess.
Two films recently viewed by this writer illustrate this point; since relapsing into my embarrassing comic book addiction last month, I’ve been playing catch-up with comics-based movies. There have been some shitty comic-based movies made in the last few years, but two that I had somewhat high hopes for were Fantastic Four and Catwoman, neither of which are new but neither of which I had seen, FF ‘cause I’m just not much of a Marvel guy (Iron Man is an exception, I think it might have been the first superhero title I ever picked up, and the movie totally kicked ass) and CW ‘cause I just never got around to it.
So anyway, here I am, diving back into the shady world of comic books and all the associated vices that go with (movies, toys, etc.) after being clean for over three years (blame Robert Downey, Jr., did I mention that Iron Man kicked ass, totally?), looking for movies that I’ve missed, or forgotten, and there is Jessica Alba in a tight blue jump suit with just the right amount of cleavage showing (is there a wrong amount?) and Halle Berry in skimpy pleather and a mask.
‘How could I miss?’ I thought as I picked the movies up and headed for the checkout; both based on comics and both starring smokin’ hot, talented actresses in revealing costumes. Well, I did miss because both movies sucked. FF, I’m not too sure what went wrong, I never read the books, but I know a little of the history and there were some funny parts, but the only characters I ended up giving half a shit about were the Thing and the Human Torch, everyone else could have just stayed home, including Miss Alba’s Sue Storm.
CW was an even bigger disappointment. Batman has always been my favorite superhero, so I’ve had a thing for the Catwoman for a long time now, since Eartha Kitt, Lee Meriwether, and Julie Newmar took turns playing her on the 60s TV show to Michelle Pfeiffer’s purrrrrfect portrayal in Batman Returns, and then to the excellent Ed Brubaker scribed comic book series.
Anyway, I don’t know how someone could take such a well-crafted character, excellent actors (Berry, Benjamin Bratt and Sharon Stone) and create such a piece of shit film.
Oh, wait, yes I do. Someone at Warner Bros. was thinking, ‘Damn, what have we got right now?’ as Spider Man was breaking all kinds of records in ’02, and someone answered with a piece-of-crap script which had been languishing for years (guessing on that part), the above mentioned actors were roped in, and some ‘90s era Sega special effects added and, voila!, piece of shit film that no actress could have saved.