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Tuesday, 08 March
The Goggles Do Nothing

Continuing a long streak of seeing absolutely miserable movies, Friday the wife and I endured the Julianne Moore unthriller The Forgotten, a title that is surely wishful thinking for everyone involved, and I'm including myself here. For those who wish yet again to be spared the ruining of the pre-ruined, skip the next paragraph or so until I warn you that the spoilers for this stupid chancre are all done.

The Forgotten is another hunk of chum from the Hollywood fishbucket whose only raison d'etre seems to be, yet again, to challenge the validity of Occam's Razor. See, Julianne Moore is an ex-mom and grief-junkie who lost her adorable widdle son in a plane wreck. I leave it to you to evaluate the relative probabilities of some alternate explanations: 1. The NSA, in cowed collusion with powerful alien entities UP THERE SOMEWHERE, routinely helps to cover up that children are stolen by said aliens for . . . some reason, and in fact helps to erase these unfortunate blonde white children from the memories all involved; OR 2. Julianne Moore NEVER HAD A CHILD, and is in fact a raving psychotic being not so much talked down from the ledge by professional milquetoast Anthony Edwards (husband) and Gary "I Can't Move My Jaw" Sinise (shrink); OR 3. Julianne Moore's kid was killed in a plane wreck and then, after an appropriate mourning period, she comes to terms with the fact that life blows sometimes.

Hollywood, naturally, picks 1 and 2 as the most logical choices.

Okay, spoilers over.

Saturday the wife had a work fundraising event, leaving me my own cheerless devices, so I called my friends K. and K. and harangued them into meeting me for a bite to eat. They showed up in dual states of misery, with male K. suffering horribly from allergies and looking like a ringworm victim around the nose and eyes, and female K. who troublingly explained to me that the previous day she had undergone some form of HMO torture: "I had to have some veins in my nose cauterized." So basically they shoved a hot poker up one of her nostrils and then sent her home laughing. "Can you believe we can bill them for this shit? I feel like Torquemada with a waiting list!"

I told them about The Forgotten, and presently we found ourselves in a discussion about really shitty movies. Like, the shittiest movies we could think of. Not tediously rotten trifles like The Forgotten, or deliberately obvious crimes against the mind like Freddie Got Fingered: no, we talked about films that are so egregiously bad, so cosmically wretched, that it actually makes you mad that they were ever created.

I had an idea, a dark one: one weekend, on a Sunday (preferably we'd all take that next Monday off), we would watch our three picks. In a row. With, necessarily, a lot of booze on hand. Here were the three films we picked (admittedly after only about 20 minutes of discussion):

Very Bad Things
What Planet Are You From?

I don't know if we'll have the courage to follow up on this plan. I have many fears. Our eyes could understandably rebel and run out the door to seek new lives, like Gogol's nose. We could, in a Foster Wallacean development, find ourselves so hopelessly mesmerized by the spectacle that our bodies are found by law enforcement officers after a long deliquescent process. Or we could perhaps helplessly succumb to some nameless cellular defense mechanism that would cause us to devolve into some form of crustaceans doomed forever to hopelessly mate with discarded cola cans because we don't know any better but it's better than watching those films.

Later that night, I went with K. and K. to the video store and lolled around while they tried to find movies. I found myself looking at the import shelf and saw something momentous. It was a DVD of a movie called Made In Estonia. Of course I picked it up. Oh, my people! What have you wrought?

The woeful little case showcased some embarrassing photos of actors displaying broad comic expressions--it is possible that one person was in drag, but then again, it's eastern Europe, so sometimes it's hard to tell; they're still trying to figure out porn, late in the game, and so sometimes they throw up photos of women who look like Harvey Korman, which is probably what nobody needs on a site like, say,

Later at home, I took the trouble to IMDB the title "Made In Estonia," and sure enough, it's there: the native title is Vanad ja kobedad saavad jalad alla. I'd love to know what that actually means, since I know it's not "Made in Estonia;" my fractional bit of Estonian knowledge tells me that much. IMDB also provides the embarrassing tagline (well, the English version anyway): "Beautiful country. Beautiful people. Smile through tears."

If Estonians didn't loathe the Russians so much, I'd almost expect this to be drafted by the Politburo. "SMILE THROUGH TEARS! Otherwise we lash you!"

No, I think this was a 100% Estonian effort, if only for the little sub-tag on the DVD box (female-K. was the one to point it out). It charmed the hell out of me. Down on the right of the embarrassing box photos there were a couple of rah-rah rent-me lines, and this one was great:


There's an idea. Hollywood . . . meet Estonia. I'd like you to hear them out.

Note: Comments are closed on old entries.


My most-hated movie of all-time is Vanilla Sky. Frankly, I expect this to be on everyone's worst movie list.
By some stroke of fortune, I have so far avoided watching the three on your list, and so I can't compare them with the Cru(z)ise piece of garbage, but I find it hard to believe that they could be worse. If you can, please tell me how.

Comment number: 005567   Posted by: Kate on March 8, 2005 04:05 AM from IP:

It's funny, I absolutely LOVED Dogma and Very Bad Things. Well, ok, Dogma I only enjoyed marginally, but I didn't HATE it. Very Bad Things I managed to see in theatres, and I was the only person in the theatre laughing. The disgust on the faces of those around me after the flick was worth the price of admission alone.

Comment number: 005568   Posted by: Ryan Waddell on March 8, 2005 07:07 AM from IP:

very bad things made me want to claw my eyes out.

Comment number: 005569   Posted by: alison on March 8, 2005 09:18 AM from IP:

Personally, I still wish I had the 2 hours of my life back from when I was dragged to see Cool World. Brain cells commite Harikari just thinking about it.

Comment number: 005570   Posted by: jamie on March 8, 2005 10:55 AM from IP:

"Made In Estonia"

This must be more Estonian revenge for whatever it is that you did to them. Not content with inflicting customized diseases on you, they are now branching out into the televisual realm of Revenge Against Skot.

Can't say as I blame them

Comment number: 005571   Posted by: Jado on March 8, 2005 11:15 AM from IP:

Skot, if you and R. and K. and K. don't watch Nothing But Trouble, you are cowards.

Comment number: 005572   Posted by: Steve on March 8, 2005 11:39 AM from IP:

what else is made with people?


Comment number: 005573   Posted by: patrick on March 8, 2005 01:15 PM from IP:

Soylent Green is made of people ...

Comment number: 005574   Posted by: Broad on March 8, 2005 02:22 PM from IP:

Why do I have the weird feeling you had seen and ranted about The Forgotten before? I just checked back through the archives thru Dec 2004 because I seem to recall a post decrying the "alternative ending" on the DVD, which I made a point of watching when I saw it, to compare my assessment of how alternative the alternative was with what you had said. Did you somehow erase a previous post from the archives just as "THEY" somehow mysteriously erased memories for some dumb-ass reason (I think the explanation offered was to test the bond between mother & child, or some crap like that). STOP TOYING WITH ME, KURRUK!!

Comment number: 005575   Posted by: S on March 8, 2005 02:28 PM from IP:

Daddy, would you like some sausage?

Comment number: 005576   Posted by: Jim on March 8, 2005 07:05 PM from IP:

worst movie ever: something's got to give. i'll give you a hint. in two hours, nothing gives.

Comment number: 005577   Posted by: kirsten on March 9, 2005 12:06 AM from IP:

Is that the Nicholson/Keaton "Something's Gotta Give," or the Marilyn Monroe unfinished "Something's Got to Give"?

Comment number: 005578   Posted by: Fusspot on March 9, 2005 10:24 AM from IP:

I saw The Chase, a Charlie Sheen/Kristy Swanson vehicle, where said actors screw in the front driver's seat of a car being driven 90 miles an hour by one of said characters into the sunset, in the theater.

It's ten years later, but every time I confess it I remain heartily sorry.

Also, AI was a piece of shit.

Comment number: 005579   Posted by: Diablevert on March 9, 2005 12:08 PM from IP:

Was I the only person in the universe who thought that 'Moulin Rouge' sucked donkeys? I sat through two hours of that dross with a permanent wince, hoping against hope that it was going to get better.

Of course ‘Made in Estonia’ was made with people. Do you know how expensive celluloid is in that part of the world?

Comment number: 005580   Posted by: Lung the Younger on March 10, 2005 06:04 AM from IP:

Actually, Lung, Moulin Rouge was brought up in the discussion. My comment after seeing that horror was: "I feel like I've been defibrillated for two hours."

Comment number: 005581   Posted by: Skot on March 10, 2005 11:33 PM from IP:

3000 Miles to Graceland. I'm still shocked at how bad that one is.

Comment number: 005582   Posted by: aldahlia on March 13, 2005 05:22 PM from IP:

is my language this bad?

Comment number: 005583   Posted by: emma on March 14, 2005 08:22 AM from IP:

I guess it is. (I lay the blame on my language's demise squarely on the head of Bart Simpson.)

Written mainly for Kate -

We went to see Vanilla Sky for some lame reason, probably free tickets. Anyway, there was a fire alarm during the last twenty minutes or so of the movie. They offered tickets to see the movie again, but we never took them. None of us to this day know the 'twist' ending. It still rankles we saw any of this wank fest, but we were spared the final wank, and for that I'm grateful.

Comment number: 005584   Posted by: emma on March 14, 2005 08:31 AM from IP:

wait.. I can use 'wank', but not b*zarre?

i feel dum.

dum enough to have watched over 3/4 of Vanilla Sky!!!

Comment number: 005585   Posted by: Emma on March 14, 2005 08:35 AM from IP:

Dogma is one of my favorite movies. I really don't know why. Stifled rage regarding my Catholic upbringing? Meh. I find Kevin Smith overrated (I like gay jokes as much as the next guy, but "genius"? Not so much) but funny.
Oh, LORD, Vanilla Sky. I watched the whole. Damn. Thing. I like a good mindbleep (can't count the number of times I've watched Donnie Darko),, that movie was *bad*.
But how did Moulin Rouge not make the final cut of your list? Worst movie EVER, made worse by being so friggin' hyped.

Comment number: 005586   Posted by: CG on March 16, 2005 09:35 PM from IP:

"Made in Estonia" is actually quite qute movie for Estonian :) Ok, it love-hate movie and people here are pretty much divided about it. But it has great soundtrack (listen to Genialistid here It actually started as a morning show where two guiys performed as two married couple. One playing female for one couple, the other for other one. Growed into a hit TV-show, toured Estonia and finally made a movie. And title "Vanad ja kobedad saavad jalad alla" means something like "Old and perky (?) get their shit together".

Comment number: 005587   Posted by: Teller on March 17, 2005 09:27 AM from IP:

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