many cases, the most interesting thing about three quarters
of all sequels is the backstory– the tale of how they
were made. With The Last Picture Show, Peter Bogdonovich
was two-timing his wife with his film’s star, Cybill Shepherd.
Nine people died during the filming of The Exorcist.
Spielberg allegedly had a nervous breakdown during the
filming of Jaws. Things of that nature.
the original Transporter movie was by all means
a terrible movie.
at all to merit the succession of, let alone a second
thought of the movie’s nearly nonexistent plot--onto which
the well-choreographed action scenes its meaty mitts--ran
out of gas in record time.
assassins and pasty waifs are bedazzled onto a pitstained
v-neck of a plot. Hell, the scene where a greased-up &
shirtless Jason Statham slides his way through a martial
arts warehouse battle must be on the rotation for talk
around the bathhouses, if you know what I mean.
all that in a blender, let ‘er spin, then take a big gulp.
You’ll be shitting recycled motor oil in twenty minutes.
That’s how I felt the first and only time I saw The
Transporter. Like I said before, after the plot gives
out quicker than an overweight nymphomaniac, the rest
of the movie was like a descent into pure unclouded madness.
If you want to look at reasonably slick fight scenes,
and can rationalize the torment of the scenes between
the fights, then you’re into a soccer hooligan
version of James Bond or a European Jet Li– which might
be worth checking out if Guy Ritchie directed (He’s the
guy that knocked up and married Madonna. Hasn’t done anything
remember silently cursing the doomed son of a bitch next
to me for the last fifteen minutes of The Transporter
when I sat in that dark and gloomy suburban theater
three years ago. This was the same manchild who’d recommended
this modern-day gem/proof that god does not exist for
my viewing pleasure. He sat there with his eyes glued
to the Jujube-encrusted screen and the subsequent madness
displayed across it. He was drooling like a goddamned
fool. Living proof that a human being could transform
into an enormous donut. I forgot about the movie and my
focus turned to different ways to give the rat bastard
cretin his comeuppance. Chloroform, a snotty rag, and
a luxurious trunk view ride to the country? Gash his Achilles
tendon with my rusty penknife? Twist it around all mean-like.
Or maybe get the big galoot drunk on a jug of cheap wine,
knock him out on his ass with low-grade sulfides, then
give the dummy that trunk ride to the country. Give the
lummox a thing or two to think about in the morning. Or
perhaps I should dose the fucker with a few hits of LSD,
head for the country and act like I’m going to execute
him. Smack him in the head and shout in his ear. Watch
him twitch in ditch for a spell then laugh as I feed him
a stack of flapjacks and watch him try and eat. Play Bone
Machine at high volume and watch him twitch some more
in a chair, encased in three rolls of duct tape just before
I lost myself. The Transporter was straight to
video material. I couldn’t believe this was playing in
a theater that wasn’t on a community college campus. I
think the point where I finally busted into howling laughter
was when the Jonny Quest-like villain was on a bus and
ordered his daughter dead for some reason or another.
Interfering with his Master Plan, if vague memory serves.
there’s the matter of the sordid mess that spawned Transporter
2. Luc Besson used to be a pretty good director before
he began executive producing (putting up money and lending
his name to) movies such as this. His director’s eye is
better than his nose for picking out a decent project,
and his whole world’s going to hell. Mr. Besson was also
married to Milla Jovovich for a while too. So he lets
one of the most beautiful women in the world go, and now
he makes crappy movies. I’m glad to see that I’m not the
only one who sees the constant and increasing signs of
see Besson whoring around L.A., banging anorexic wannabe
supermodels, wrangling money out of bloated fatcat studio
execs and ever-so-smoothly rationalizing the scenes in
Amsterdam that he plans to work into a script that he
hasn’t written a word of. Or maybe he’s diddling clammy
and even skinnier European supermodels as he uses his
financial savvy to milk some Euros out of French merchant
bankers. Jason Statham, the movie’s star–the DeNiro to
Ritchie’s Scorsese– can’t really afford to scoff at a
paycheck (or an appearance in a movie playing in The States)
while Ritchie is raising Madonna’s kids in a state of
this in mind, Transporter 2 is the further adventures
of shady ex-military who operates under the radar of European
law. Don’t see it. See it. Do what you want. This is the
kind of movie that you need to eat raw meat during, before,
and after to maximize the experience. Wear a black turtleneck
when you do. Or you could treat it like a blind date set
up online. You could expect the worst thing ever– a behemoth
with little to no social skills, a godawful birthmark
the size of Rhode Island on the upper thigh that’ll make
you wish to God your date would’ve worn a longer skirt.
But expect nothing more! Don’t pay more than seventy-five
cents to see this movie. And don’t bitch to me if you
recently read an interview with Matt Damon. He was talking
about how movies/films have two lives. One life is where
they end up years down the line after they come out. The
second was what Damon referred to as “initial hype,” where
you would hear about Damon’s buddy (and fellow Oscar Winner)
Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez every week for six months.
And that initial hype came from the set of their movie,
Gigli. But then again, Harold and Maude
was only in theaters for a week, too. They both bombed,
thought about that while I watched The Constant Gardener,
except for the Affleck and Lopez crap. I think this
film won’t see its due for a while. Some critics will
dig it and a few nomadic tribes of film geeks will carry
its torch alongside some demented activist nuts. Then
there will be those who will buy it years later, just
because it’s six bucks at Target.
that’s my point. Will it be a film that you would actually
buy for dirt cheap? One that you’ll get right away, if
at all? I buy and sell online. You start growing aware
of these sorts of things. The idea of not having to pay
ridiculous prices for stuff, if you don’t mind waiting
a week. Anyway, I think Gardener will find its
audience after getting some acclaim, maybe a few awards,
then let the good times roll on video.
a few years down the line. Modern day English Patient
stuff mixed in with some conspiracy theorist shit. Shit’s
getting too heavy anyhow. People going insane in the world.
Watch Bush say something racist now. It will be madness.
This country will officially become Apocaland. This country
would turn into The Road Warrior if that man said
something stupid right now.
what I’m getting at here is that when life is grim in
general, you don’t want to watch this type of thing that
brings up internal ethical dilemmas within yourself. Watch
Old School! Watch Zoolander or something.
Zoolander came out like two weeks after 9/11 and
helped get us smiling again and shit. The Constant
Gardener needs to be in a closet fermenting somewhere
right now in the worst way. Which is not to say that it’s
a bad film. With the way things are, watching this film
to escape reality would be like cheating on your wife
with her doppelganger. I see no sense in it.
what I want to say here is that if you watch this movie
right now, your mind will turn into mush. Let it sit a
while and come back to it later. Go and watch something
like Nightmare Alley with Tyrone Power. It’s about
carnival performers who get successful and eventually
go mad and become... Ooohoohoohoohoo! You’ll just have
to watch it to find out. It was done in the late ‘40s
and a much different world. Watch Nightmare Alley
now and hold out for awhile on The Constant Gardener.
Crazy ass title, too.
Looks like summer’s up, hmm? Oh you are working Labor
Day too, hmm? Yes, yes, I took it too. It should be quiet
that day and we get another free day off later on. Oh
you’re out of benefit time already? That blows, dude.
Well those dames beat the shit out of you after you kept
using them to hook up with their friends. You had ‘em
all too, didn’t you? You little manwhore, you! Those chicks
almost cut your dick off, fool! I don’t know what to tell
you. And quit wearing your jammies to work, man! The ones
you had on yesterday had giblet stains on ‘em. It’s getting
nasty. Nasty, indeed...
Gilliam is easily one of my favorite directors. You know,
the only American who was in Monty Python, who started
making brilliantly bizarre classics like Time Bandits,
Brazil, and one of the best films ever made, Fear
and Loathing in Las Vegas. Not a dull moment in that
if you know anything about Gilliam, you know that his
ability to make incredible motion pictures is paralleled
only by his ability to battle film studios. He fought
Universal studios after they returned a cut of his film
minus nearly an hour of Gilliam’s edit. He nearly walked
off the set of 12 Monkeys. So I ask myself, why
doesn’t the silly bastard just start producing his own
stuff? But some guys can’t play guitar and sing,
so that’s that.
when watching The Brothers Grimm, it occurred to
me that Gilliam just might be the sort of FREAK POWER
MAD DOG that needed a leash. If this guy started making
his own pictures instead of making them for studios, it’d
be a mad house. A MADHOUSE!!!
also came to this conclusion while being pulled apart
in several different ways when I tried following the plot.
They had this ghostbusting shit and all of these demented
things going on that they turned into children’s stories.
And they each drag you a different way that makes you
feel like you’re drunk. I mean, I’m usually trashed in
some way, shape, or form when I go to the movies anyway,
but I’m into the BYOB philosophy of drinking at the movies.
There’s never anywhere to put the keg anyway.
Brothers Grimm is by no means the best thing that
Gilliam’s done. He also went through this nightmare production
of Don Quixote after Fear and Loathing and
it might’ve knocked all the piss and vinegar out of him.
The Brothers Grimm does very little to refute this
I wasn’t completely disappointed with it. It acts more
like a series of incredible images than a motion picture.
It’s kind of like getting a randomly assembled Sunday
paper–you have to fish around to make sense of it and
by the time you make even the slightest bit of progress
in putting it all together you no longer give a shit.
What was intended to be a quiet Sunday morning becomes
you catch The Conan O’Brien Show on the right night, you’ll
catch this bit where he pulls a red lever behind his desk
and a scene from Walker, Texas Ranger shows on the screen
for maybe thirty seconds. Terrible production, rotten
acting, and abhorrent direction have a skanky lovefest
on a single bed and these are the love stains left on
the sheets. They’re pretty fun though. It’s like finding
a fiver on the ground or getting something in the mail.
Those Walker moments are just terrible, but they never
overstay their welcome.
we’ve got The Cave. This movie shares in the same
absurdity, but overstays its welcome once the theater
lights go dark. Picture a cross between Aliens
and Journey to the Center of the Earth. These biologists
or something played by wannabe character actors and general
hipster fucks go on some deep spelunking expedition where
creatures that look like high yella Aliens start attacking.
Then of course, some asswad assumes leadership over the
small band of survivors after the creatures initially
attack–finishing each order/statement with the word people.
I can’t imagine anyone caring what happens after that.
once told me that there’s nothing worse than a comedy
that fails. I agree with that definitely being a terrible
thing, but I think a horror movie that fails is worse.
Both types of movies have a mammoth task ahead of them,
either in making you laugh or quiver in fear. And it’s
a real letdown when all you’re really doing is trying
to catch the right light on your watch because you can’t
wait for the end that can never, ever come soon enough.
But the most interesting thing about a bad horror movie
is that it rarely fails to make you laugh and bad comedies
always seem to make you cringe.
I decided to help those that wouldn’t really be scared
while watching The Cave. I figured this would be
a good assignment for Tom Maccio. I’ve mentioned a while
ago that his kid gave Obi-Wan Kenobi a spit ‘n’ shine
job in London some weeks back and Maccio hasn’t completely
gotten over it. The fact that his kid hasn’t started washing
his hand yet isn’t helping matters any, either. He’s starting
to look like he belongs in Munch’s Scream. Picture
a Charles Addams caricature of a Serpico-coiffed Italian
sitting behind you in a movie theater. You get smacked
in the back of the head during an allegedly suspenseful
moment. You turn around and see a sight like that behind
you–pinwheel eyes and all–and you’ll suddenly get your