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Monday, 21 June
Is The Sun Out Yet? Yes? You Should Go Somewhere Dark.
Well, here we are at the beginning of summer, and the hot summer movies are coming at your face like a pack of hungry coyotes! Let's take a look at what's in the offing and how terrible they will be sight unseen! As always, I have never seen any of these things, nor do I intend to (which is a complete lie, since I will probably watch them all some starless, bible-black night when nothing else is on cable).
Knight and Day
With a title that inspired, it's got to be good! See, why doesn't everyone in Hollywood be this creative? If only "Cagney and Lacey" were titled "Frilly and Lacey" they could have squeezed out a few more decades of television's favorite lesbian cop team. Kramer Versus Kramer could have been so much more had they called it Kramer Versus Krammer, a tense actioner pitting Dustin Hoffman, a reluctant dominant, against Meryl Streep, the woman who is simply tired of being relentlessly fisted every damn night.
I frankly don't know why I'm not writing for Hollywood.
Anyway, this noxious thing pairs up Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz in some sort of doubtlessly ludicrous caper film; I'm guessing that at some point Diaz dances in her underwear and Tom "Tom (TM)" Cruise shoots several dozen ethnically-something goons while Diaz screams girlishly and then dances in her underwear again. The film also features Peter Sarsgaard, a fine actor who apparently only wishes to appear in dreadful garbage, and Paul Dano, who probably fruitlessly wished that, like the first half of Little Miss Sunshine, he didn't have to say anything.
"Saturday Night Live" has been an American institution for decades now. We watched through thick and thin, and we made a lot of these people a lot of money. We sat through the great--John Belushi, Eddie Murphy when he was genuinely hilarious--the middling--Tim Kazurinsky, you were intermittently grin-worthy!--and, well, the rest. Let us not speak of Victoria Jackson.
So what do we get in return? Vicious dick-twisting like this fucking thing. Adam Sandler! David Spade! Rob Schneider! I ask you, Christians: what part of God's plan do these guys fit into? The same part that includes fleas and mange and back hair? Eat hot shit, SNL.
Maximizing the cruelty, the cast also features Kevin James--hey, he's pretty fat! That's funny. Certainly funnier than Chris Farley, because that guy died, which was pretty weak. And there's Chris Rock--who is funny, when he's not squandering his talent, which is apparently now always. And then there's just the weird, like Salma Hayek, Maria Bello and Steve Buscemi. Then again, I guess even these guys have comedy backgrounds: Hayek's eyebrows in Frida were good for an extended laugh; Bello famously cradled Bill Macy's junk onscreen; and Buscemi was in Con Air. So maybe I'm shortchanging them on the comedy front.
Excerpted from an IMDB user review: "One or two sections were flat and a few too many fart-jokes" NO WAY.
The Last Airbender
Nobody could have predicted that after the very fine and atmospheric ghost story The Sixth Sense that M. Night Shyamalan would move to an extended series of knee-slapping comedies such as Unbreakable, Signs, The Village, Lady in the Water, and, perhaps his pinnacle as a comedic filmmaker, The Happening. (If you didn't laugh at Marky Mark attempting to reason with murderous trees, I simply don't know what to say to you.)
This auteur's career arc has been nothing less than breathtaking, and the idea of him welding his unique slapstick sensibilities to tiny little headshaven kung-fu masters who--evidently--bend air is really the ne plus ultra of what the film medium is capable of. What is next for Mr. Shyamalan? I'm guessing porn. It's really the last frontier for him. I even have a script for him. It's called She Sucks, and it's the chillingly hilarious story of a vampiric porn star (Christy Canyon, out of retirement!) who has to give blowjobs to exist. (Haley Joel Osment won't stop calling me asking about the status of this project.) Gary Cole has already signed on as the bumbling vampire hunter/former fluffer.
Isn't it adorable watching other studios attempt to compete with Pixar? It's sort of like watching second graders doggedly following their older brothers to sandlot baseball games, except Pixar is patient enough not to scream, "Jesus, would you fuck off? You don't even have a mitt, you little bastard!"
Despicable Me might or might not be a good film, but when the ads for it prominently feature a fart gun . . . well . . . yeah. But hey, that's the sort of thing we all want to see in 3D! (Incidentally, I'm not sure I'm ready to experience Kristen Wiig in 3D, even in animated form. That woman freaks me the fuck out.) Extra stunt/cred casting points for Julie Andrews and nerdstorm sensation Jemaine Clement.
OH FUCK YEAH. This is going to be utterly terrible. I can't wait!
Look at that fucking cast! It's Ed Wood-level insane! Adrien Brody! Topher Grace! DANNY FUCKING TREJO! (Hurrah!) Laurence Fishburne! Walton "The Shield is Justified" Goggins! AND Mahershalalhashbaz Ali! (I have no idea who that is, but man alive, that is a name and a half.)
*doubles over, plants hands on knees, breathes deeply for a while*
I wonder if my friend Warren knows this is coming. Warren is a deeply disturbed individual who routinely advances the screamingly insane argument that Predator 2 is one of the finest action movies ever created. Warren is also a big martial arts fan and practitioner, which means that he regualarly enjoys being savagely beaten by close friends, so make of that what you will. I have any number of friends that have really dubious film tastes. My friend Erik insists that Sly Stallone's Cliffhanger is nothing short of brilliant, an assertion that generally leaves me in weak-kneed tears. On the other hand, physician, heal thyself: I really, really enjoy anything that dumblord Uwe Boll releases under the demented aegis of German government funding.
It's summer! Do you feel stupider yet? Wait.