Beast Banner October 2007
ISSUE #120
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ArrowThis BEAST in Science
Our guide to mind-boggling presidential illusions! You won't believe your eyes!

Democrats cross streams in Turkey
Allan Uthman

ArrowYear of the Rat
A campaign 2008 diary
Matt Taibbi

ArrowAll About the Benjamin
Canada boots CodePink leader
Ian Murphy

ArrowDuh, Hillary is a Woman
The inevitable vadge in chief
A Monkey

ArrowCritical Massimo
A chat with Massimo Pigliucci, godless heathen

ArrowSo Sleazy an Ad Man can do It
The evolution of product placement
Steve Gordon

ArrowParty Poopers
Rehab for Grand Old Perverts
Rich Herschlag

ArrowSome Brief Thoughts on Abortion
Proffesor H. T. Muttonchops

ArrowInterview with Ron Hawkins
Lowest of the Low frontman is surprisingly un-stupid


ArrowPastor John Hagee Launched on Iranian Nuclear Facility

ArrowBritney Spears' Mitochondria Descended from Bacteria

ArrowDan Jumbo Threatens Local Wildlife


ArrowThe Beast Page 5
Freaky Sci-fi Reality

ArrowKino Kwikees: Movie Trailer Reviews

ArrowActual Movie Review: The Darjeeling Limited
Matt Cale

Your completely accurate horoscope

[sic] - Letters



The Heartbreak Kid

Yeesh. Here we go again. Ben Stiller playing his typically neurotic character in another series of supposedly comic mishaps designed to line his and a self-important producer's pockets. Or release the tension out of a shitty and unoriginal first date after soup and salad at Fuddrucker's. But I'm guessing the latter is merely incidental.

According to this zinger of a trailer for The Heartbreak Kid, Stiller plays (get this!) a "guy who could never commit" because "the idea of marriage" is "just so permanent." If you can stand a little more, you'll see he "finally takes a chance." Shit, sign me up because that never gets old! At the patented bad-advice-of-his-unattractive-best-friend, he marries a girl he's known for 6 weeks. On their honeymoon in an unrealistically beautiful Mexican backdrop, Stiller discovers he married an unbalanced and severely annoying (but in a really funny way) retard. A reasonably cute retard, but a retard nonetheless.

It's at this point in the trailer that the directors of There's Something About Mary are announced to have some grimy hand in this, and the fart jokes and unfavorable sophomoric humor begin (remember, there's good sophomoric humor and bad sophomoric humor). Mix in that bad date movie aspect of Stiller meeting the "right" girl on his honeymoon, and you're in thirtysomething hell. This looks so bad I wouldn't be surprised if Carlos Mencia shows up.


We Own the Night

If I had to take a guess, I'd say the fact that "Heart of Glass" by Blondie playing at a shitty disco, the bad outfit Joaquin Phoenix is in and the hooker makeup that Eva Mendes has on sets We Own the Night in the '80s. You know, because nothing draws in all the suckers like playing the same crappy music they've been listening to for nearly the last 30 years.

Just in case you haven't seen The Departed enough on cable and the idea of seeing Mark Wahlberg playing another hard-assed cop makes your fly itch in that really good way, here's what you can expect: Two brothers, one an ambitious club owner/drug runner and the other and ambitious cop looking to take down a drug ring. And Robert Duvall is their father and the chief of police. (You smell that cooking?) Oh, and Wahlberg and Duvall are heading up the task force to take drugs off the streets.

So Phoenix's dope ring buddies decide to tell him they're going to wear Elephant Man hoods and take out the heads of the cops on their collective ass. Moral dilemma time.

So despite the fact that Wahlberg was always dad's favorite, Phoenix decides to potentially put his wang on the chopping block so his brother and father will invite him over for poker night. Car crashes, lots of action and trouble ensue. Don't get me wrong, it doesn't look that bad, but it doesn't look that good either. Maybe if I'm on a plane or home sick from work when it hits cable. But if the filmmakers promise me Mendes gets used as a coke mule, I'll go opening night. And besides, only pretentious asses say shit like they "own the night." It sounds like a shitty teen vampire movie.


Michael Clayton

For years, George Clooney seemed to have this trademarked acting style (unfortunately trademarked by William Shatner) where he... annunciated his... dialogue with... dramatic... pauses... intended to... leave you... hanging on his... every... word. Combine that with his salt and pepper (many have called it distinguished) hair color and the fact that he smiled a lot and looked down in a shy, yet devilish manner. And no one really seemed to mind because he had a reasonable amount of presence, he was pretty funny and schoolgirls to cougars to grannies wanted to screw him like pyramid scheme latecomers.

Then Clooney met up with a talented director who decided to make him do something he'd never tried before--acting. Since then, Clooney's taken up directing, picked some smart, socially-conscious roles and hasn't committed any cultural war crimes involving rubber suits with nipples. He even got an Oscar--for acting of all things!

Now Clooney's doing a lukewarm Grishamesque conspiracist lawyer drama/thriller called Michael Clayton. Some guilt-ridden lawyer is about to win a multi-billion dollar class action lawsuit and flips his shit. Clooney plays the burned-out fixer called in to take the reins on the situation and pull off the biggest screwjob yet. There's running, plenty of trouble and serious dialogue that starts getting kind of boring about halfway through the trailer. Then the trip continues south when Clooney falls off the annunciation wagon.

But you're not sure you care, because Clooney's kind of dreamy. Not in the I'm going to tug it in the shower to him kind of way. But in the I think we'd be good friends and would have fun hanging out kind of way. You know? I think we'd have a lot to talk about. He doesn't have that air of douchieness to him and you feel like you can trust him around your woman or your pets. Speaking of which, Clooney seems like the kind of guy your girlfriend or wife would leave you for and you wouldn't mind too much. Unless your kids start calling him Daddy at which point you'd have to teach the son of a bitch a thing or two. Yeah, then it'd be on. Let's see you fix that one, Michael Clayton.


30 Days of Night

Now here's the movie that could've been called We Own the Night. Another movie based on a graphic novel (that means R-rated comic book) you've never heard of. Unless you live in your parent's basement, that is. This also means it's going to shamelessly pilfer its visual style from either a metal video or another movie based on an R-rated comic book.

So there's some town near or above the Arctic Circle where there's no sunshine for... I'm gonna guess 30 days. Josh Harnett is some kind of hick sheriff up there and vampires start popping out of the woodwork. Their faces look like they were designed with some distorted CGI and it makes sense. You're a vampire and you don't have to find a coffin or a dark nook to rest your My Chemical Romance-looking ass in. I mean, the food's going to be frozen and there is really no measure to how much I truly do not care about this movie or its trailer.

Josh Harnett looks like a grown up version of DJ from Rosanne and sounds like Keanu Reeves to me. Maybe he's a cool guy and everything, but those things have always bugged me about him and I don't want to pay cash money to be reminded that he exists. Now I'm just going by the trailer here, but it seems like the filmmakers are asking us to forget that they're plopping yet another shitty horror movie in front of us by telling us that it's based on an R-rated comic book. Like we're supposed to say Ooh! Ooh! Sin City, V for Vendetta and 300 were all graphic novels, I mean R-rated comic books so 30 Days of Night must be good too. The trailer trying to get you to see this movie is like some pimp telling you that you should do it to some girl with Down Syndrome because she'll swallow.

Wow. I just grossed myself out. I never wondered what it would feel like, because I never actually thought I could pull it off. I don't know if it's like hearing The Stones for the first time or if it's like smelling raw sewage for the first time. I hope I don't start chasing the dragon.



If you watch the trailer for Rendition (or Dude, Where's my Civil Liberties?) you'll see a rambunctiously cheery Reese Witherspoon talking to her Husband of Questionable Heritage (HQH) on the phone as he's getting home from a business meeting. He gets pulled into a stairway and eventually Witherspoon isn't so bubbly. We're eventually introduced to a couple of craggy, burned out government agents, played by Meryl Streep and Alan Arkin, who decide to send his ass out of the country. You know, for kicks.

Enter Jake Jellyjar, I mean Gyllenhall, as the young agent out on his first assignment, and a cue-balled man of Middle Eastern descent, explaining why his methods are just as he beats Witherspoon's crying, buttery pecan husband, who isn't particularly pleased with his situation. Meanwhile, Witherspoon is nagging her way up the governmental food chain. Things heat up with some explosions, and Witherspoon's nagging eventually gives way to whining.

My money says the HQH is guilty as shit. The trailer spends too much time confusing us and asking deep moral questions to its audience to make you even consider the possibility of the HQH's guilt. The cast also distracts, Witherspoon for the boys and Gyllenhaal for the girls and Brokeback enthusiasts. Even if the supposed eye candy doesn't do its job, you'll likely feel burned that you just shelled out cash American to watch the same stuff you've been seeing on CNN special reports for the last few years.


Things We Lost in the Fire

Fall means Abercrombie-clad douchebags traveling the rusty, yellowing countryside, another year of bad TV and gruesomely overpaid football players taking no less than 18 minutes to set up plays that last no longer than 8 seconds. It also means overseas auteurs storming Hollywood to release pretentiously contrived tragedies in hopes of spewing out some libido-murdering acceptance speech at the Oscars months later.

This year the smell of cat shit is trailed by Halle Berry, trying to uglify herself again by wearing no makeup (the Academy loves fake-ugly as much as retard roles) as a widow who goes on a codependency bender with her dead husband's loser best friend, played by Benicio Del Toro.

The trailer shows Del Toro moving into Berry's impossibly expensive, yet modest home with her and her tragic mulatto children/future underwear models she had with her husband, the now-dead David Duchovny. They've got the curly hair and the blue eyes--wow!! It looks like Berry and Del Toro might hook up in their grief, but if he puts his throbbing uncircumcised member in her fartbox after she says 'make me feeeeel good,' you'll know this is just a shameless Oscar ploy. The trailer alone made me feel like I just read something off of Oprah's book club list or like I just had my nose broken with a hardcover copy of The Secret. I'll just go listen to the Low album by the same name and pretend this isn't happening.


Dan in Real Life

From the moment the woozy narrator of the trailer for Dan in Real Life explained how Steve Carrel plays a renowned advice columnist whose life is kind of in shambles, I got bored. Yeah, yeah--loves his daughters, overly protective of them after what I'm guessing is the death of a wife or volatile breakup with a trannie roommate, whatever. You pretty much lost me at hello. I like Carrel, just not this much. Besides, I get too many irony enemas when I go to the movies lately.

Then Carrel meets a girl who he manages to make laugh at a book store in the annoyingly typical scenic town where he's visiting his parents. But wait! Oh no! Turns out this little dream pie is dating his brother! And the worst part? Dane Cook plays his brother! And they're playing a shitty Pete Townsend song in the trailer! They're dancing around and partaking in contrived family activities! You know, just to try something new! And there's comically awkward situations involving sneaking out a bathroom window and falling in the bushes below!

I feel like I'm watching Meet the Parents and the only upside is that I don't have to put up with Ben Stiller. And the words real and life do not belong in a movie title. At least not in that order.


Saw IV

The trailer for Saw IV says if it's Halloween then it must be Saw. A bunch of grisly and brutal images that go for gross more than they do for scary projected on a wall. And the people who write to us at The BEAST have the ass to call us lazy?

Yeah, yeah. More lunatic ramblings and death traps and Jigsaw or whatever his name is. All of the Saw movies mean less to me than my last crap. I wouldn't waste time out of my life, hard drive space, blank DVDs or even blank VHS tapes on these movies.

To me the Saw movies are a lot like getting bad press or being the object of any kind of negative attention. If some prick is picking on you and you get upset or pissed off, it's just going to keep coming. A whiny reaction is all that's needed to keep the ball rolling. Just ask Tom Cruise. And in the event that you do get the former Mr. Mapother on the line, he'll also tell you that ignoring it eventually makes it go away. Unless it's some kind of VD in which case anyone will tell you that.

But apparently that's not working. I ignore these goddamned things and the same gang of Roger Corman wannabes keep farting them out! And I don't even see them! So maybe I'll go take a nap in an iron maiden or something. From what I've heard that Pinhead or Handjob or whatever the hell he goes by died like 2 movies ago, and they're still dragging this out like he's Anna Nicole. All I can say is if you do go, expect to smell plenty of Axe body spray, hear lots of Austin Powers impressions and see high-fives aplenty.





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