Beast Banner May/June 2007
ISSUE #117
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Features

ArrowLet There be Retards
My Special Time at the Creation Museum

Ian Murphy

ArrowGhosts of Tim Leary & Hunter S. Thompson
Freedom vs. Authority under the 40-foot pulsating rainbow vagina
Joe Bageant

ArrowThose Lazy Iraqis
It's hard to pull up your socks when your legs have been blown off

Allan Uthman

ArrowHoward Zinn's Message of Hope
Extortion through inaction

A Monkey

ArrowThe Secret to Attaining Awesomeness
A lucrative six-step program
Phillip Kolba

ArrowJerry Falwell: Stone Fucking Dead at Last
A fond farewell
Matt Cale

ArrowAn Open Letter to Libertarians
An offer you can't refuse
Stan Goff

ArrowExperts: Cockburn Adds to Global Warming
Liberal pudit trades positions with GM

Charles Komanoff

Departments

ArrowThe Beast Page 3
Non-threatening Negro Literature

ArrowKino Kwikees: Movie Trailer Reviews

ArrowBEAST-O-Scopes
Your completely accurate horoscope

[sic] - Letters

 

Transformers

Yeah, I’ll give Michael Bay this much—the guy is good. He could sell bibles to Jesus. Two summers ago, he rehashed Logan’s Run and pretty much the only reason anyone went to see it was because Scarlet Johansson went blonde, and regardless of your feelings about the woman, those feeders could talk you into getting run over by a bus. I saw it and it sucked. It had half a brain and was interesting at a few points, but it mainly sucked. And it made me hungry.

Now Bay’s made a live-action version of every aging male’s childhood favorite cartoon, Transformers. For some reason (probably “I Love the ‘80s”) they’re cool again and someone’s got to cash in on it.

We see meteors crashing all over the place and cars turning into robots, helicopter robots fucking up the Army and some boring human interest shit. I challenge you to find me JUST ONE person who wants to see this for any reason other than seeing what the Transformers look like and to see some serious giant robot fighting. You didn’t care about Spike and Sparkplug when you were ten and you’re certainly not going to start now that real people are playing them.

The effects look neat and you know better than to actually expect it to be good if Bay’s name is anywhere near it. I’m expecting The Day After Tomorrow with zero street cred and better action and effects. And the best part is that Dane Cook has nothing whatsoever to do with this movie. In this day and age, that counts for something.

License to Wed

Watching the trailer for License to Wed left me feeling like I’d just been hit by a wrecking ball. You’ve got Robin Williams acting like he’s been living off eightballs for the last three days, Mandy Moore and a few guys from The Office in some comedy about engagement evolving into marriage. Seriously sick shit.

One of The Office Guys and Moore are getting married and because she’s some kind of corn-fed bible thumper they’ve got to go through some kind of twisted pre-marriage couples therapy crap. The contractually-bound Williams and some kind of troll child have them going through a traumatic chain of horrific experiences before Williams will give his blessing and So What?

Some other great and what promise to be forgettable elements are Office Guy’s Token Black Friend he can have a discussion and drink a brewski with when the no sex before marriage rule turns his nuts into basketballs. To make matters worse, Williams seems like some senile before his time priest who seems to treat religion like some kind of spectator sport—which it is, but who cares about a game show host fueled on speed and dressed in a collar? Then we’ve got some twisted robot baby things. If I was putting this trailer together I would’ve started playing Godflesh’s Streetcleaner album when those things came on. They were out of Village of the Damned or something.

Williams is clearly having fun bashing Catholicism, the Office guys are pretty funny and Mandy Moore isn’t hypnotic enough to go see License to Wed, but she’s not too bad a perk, even though she’s been tainted by Zach Braff. Those three things are all this movie comes down to.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

All right! We’re past the foreplay and all the kiddie shit that came with the first four Harry Potter movies and we’re finally at the meat of things! I was getting so sick of the childish aspects of the first four chapters of the Harry Potter series and now we’re finally at the darkness and dirtiness of it all! This is where people start getting killed and shit starts getting creepy.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire ended with Voldemort taking physical form and promising The End Of All Things for Hogwart’s. (Look, I fucked up somewhere along the line and I somehow know the names of all these people and places in the Harry Potter series. But I never read a book, I swear!)

The school doesn’t know about Harry’s encounter with Voldemort and no one believes him. Voldemort’s getting ready to strike and it’s up to Potter and his fellow students to fight him off. Gary Oldman appears to actually star in this one and I’m pretty sure I saw Helena Bonham-Carter in there somewhere. It looks way scarier than the other ones. There’s going to be people running around with railroad ties through their heads! People on fire screeching the Latin alphabet in drag! Amway representatives on fire attacking schoolchildren with dildos and harsh language!

That and there’s really nothing else this summer I want to see anyway. Plus this one will probably push My Old Man to that psychotic break that only these movies can. If what I hear about this movie is true the cops are going to cross three states chasing him. This might be better than the time he took me to see Caddyshack when I was five! Five!

Hairspray

Watching the trailer for Hairspray reminded me of hearing about how roaches scatter when you turn the lights on. I’ve never actually seen it firsthand but imagery my mind conjures is not entirely unlike the trailer for Hairspray. I saw so many things wrong with it that I didn’t know what to take down first.

The fact that a John Waters movie is being remade definitely sprang to mind. An uggo dancing for a couple hours definitely did as well. Travolta in drag playing the Divine role and sacrificing Christopher Walken to The God of Respectability were also gruesome. But seeing that High School Musical wet spot Zac Efron was probably the one that ironically gave me the dry heaves at the end. I’m sure some gangly midget of a teenager or a future bulimia victim will claim to get pregnant during this movie because of that fact. Michelle Pfeiffer mugging the Debbie Harry role was insult to injury I’ll tell you.

The whole trailer plays out like a bad musical, then Queen Latifah shows up with a wig and I’m ready to pass out. Aside from Travolta, who is either in some twisted variation of a fat suit or really went to hell, I don’t see anything that even alludes to John Waters’ original twisted style and character—which made the movie. They’re probably going to use this movie as a before poster for the Ricki Lake chick, then they’ll feed her a lot of speed then make an after poster in a year when she’s skinny and has lost her lunch ladies. That’s all I got.

Sunshine

This looks like The Black Hole without the robots. Remember the two flying R2-D2 rip-offs and the also-flying red Darth Vader one? Yeah, I think that’s what’s going on here. A group of scientists flying to the sun to keep it from dying.

Danny Boyle, who made Trainspotting and 28 Days Later (the trailer reminds us) takes us on a space ship where a lot of yelling and falling happen. A lot of fire too! Lotta fire. It just looks like a director who used to do a lot of cool movies discovered CGI. There’s a high level of complacency that drenches Sunshine. This is like Polite English Cousin of Solaris.

If you’re at a high-functioning or better level with your ADD, you won’t have any idea what’s going on in this series of split-second shots highlighting what seems to be a lightshow with physical comedy. It stars Cillian Murphy from 28 Days Later and Batman Begins and I like him because he could probably steal any hipster’s girlfriend right out from under his nose. But can he save the Earth?

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry

I was tempted just to write the words squirm squirm squirm and leave it at that when it came to I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry. But I knew it wasn’t Adam Sandler pretending to play grab ass with that Chris Farley wannabe Kevin James that bugged me, but this is just a loosely disguised Some Like It Hot. Sandler plays Tony Curtis, Jessica Biel plays Marilyn Monroe and James plays Jack Lemmon. Instead of cross dressers in a jazz band they’re posing as gay firefighters to save James’ pension.

Biel looks finer than frog hair as the lawyer helping Sandler and James prepare for the predictable investigation into the credibility of their marriage and she actually makes me want to watch this on cable. Watching an Adam Sandler movie is like staring into the sun for me lately. On a scale of badness, it’s like watching 7th Heaven. Seriously. Jessica Biel? 7th Heaven? This could be the sig--

The Simpsons Movie

I fell into a Simpsons rut a few years back. I kept seeing the same dozen episodes over and over, only the lame seasons were available on DVD and I didn’t care enough anyway. I’ve always liked The Simpsons but never really in a megalomaniacal way. But now I don’t even really have the energy to care about a movie.

I don’t know if The Simpsons Movie ties into the series and the trailer didn’t even really say what was going on. All I saw was a series of what appeared to be show clips linked together. Funny moments, random moments-all that the show has turned into as of late. It seemed to almost vow to work any character that’s ever been on the show into the movie. I don’t know what to tell you. It just looks like a really epic episode of The Simpsons. You’re either going to see it or you’re not. They should have made this thing like, seven or eight years ago at least.

I Know Who Killed Me

Sometimes when I’m at a bad movie I like to start making barnyard animal and fart noises. I might act like my foot’s in a bear trap if the movie’s bad enough or I’m bored enough. Boredom and disbelief turn me into a real prick sometimes.

But it’s that goddamned Lindsay Lohan. I’m sick of hearing about her and I’m getting sick of looking at her. Admittedly there was a time where I would’ve checked myself in for admitting to the latter, but she’s turning into the daughter of Robert Redford or Leatherface. If she stopped tanning, gained a little weight, went to school and disappeared out of the spotlight for five years she might survive.

But because she will have turned a mere 21 years old by the time you read this, Lohan is dumb as a bowl of mice and is going to end up turning into somebody’s skid-mark or own personal spittoon by the time she’s 25. With that said, we’re left with I Know Who Killed Me, an attempt on Lohan’s part to move toward adult fare instead of something with the name Disney branded into it.

The clichéd Massive Attack song that opens I Know Who Killed Me’s trailer spells doom immediately. Then Lohan’s some kind of bohemian writer with a bad dye job who’s writing some alter-ego nonsense for her English class. She’s presumed kidnapped and disappears for a couple weeks before turning up thinking she’s someone else. I think she turns to stripping and her douchey boyfriend has to win her back all over again or something. Mistaken identity, murder cases, and Lohan turning into her own character she’s writing (gasp!!!) make me want to see this when I need a break from shopping! I’ll watch it on cable someday if Lohan gets naked but that’s about it.

No Reservations

“I wish there was a cookbook for life.”

“You know better than anyone—it’s the recipes you create yourself that are the best.”

-Actual dialogue from No Reservations

I heard that shit and I woke the whole house up I was laughing so hard. I still am. Give me a minute. A cookbook for life. That’s great. That is so great. Sorry.

Catherine Zeta-Jones plays a quirky head chef at a pretentious Manhattan restaurant who’s left in charge of the care of her niece after her sister dies. She can’t relate to kids, but fortunately the new sauce guy (I’m not using the term sous-chef) played by Aaron Eckhart is a free spirit who gets along with kids and has a shaggy haircut. Zeta-Jones lets her guard down and gives up her control freak ways while finding what her life’s been missing---love.

YEAH!!!! SUCK IT NO RESERVATIONS!!! I CAN GIVE AS GOOD AS I GET, YOU SON OF A BITCH!!! YOU WANT TO THROW THIS LILITH FAIR SOUNDTRACK AT ME WHILE WE SLING MUD AT EACH OTHER? YOU GO RIGHT AHEAD!!! THESE FISH AREN’T BITING!!!

Oh Jesus, I’m so sorry. That recipes you create for yourself line just did me in. Jesus, I’m still… still laughing over here. I mean there’s that, then there’s Aaron Eckhart’s hair. It’s like stoner Bon Jovi or something. Shit man, this might be the big one. No Reservations just might be the one that does me in. And HD is not kind to Catherine Zeta-Jones. No, sir…

 

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