Korner: Movie Reviews by Michael Gildea
an old term from the Golden Age of Hollywood that describes an actor’s
ability to turn any project into a box office bomb. That term is “box
office poison.” Many actors and actresses went through it. Some even
worked crappy jobs during their rut.
there’s one man who, probably through witchcraft of the black arts,
has managed to invert the meaning of box office poison. Instead of
talented people turning projects into crap, this man has turned crap
into gold. And who is this man?
had his name on many a celluloid turd that has made sickening amounts
of money. Pirates of the Caribbean, Bad Boys parts 1 and 2,
Pearl Harbor, anything directed by Michael Bay. Big budget stuff
that sells popcorn and that leads you to believe that we are indeed
living in a cultural and perhaps moral wasteland.
you’ve read The Da Vinci Code, you shouldn’t admit to it. But
if you have, what you’re in store for with National Treasure
is a cross between that and Monty Python and the Holy Grail
with a serious delivery. Silly dialogue, a series of cliffhangers,
and ridiculous explanations/clues have arrived in bulk.
I had psychic abilities, I’d say that the viewing of this movie is
going to be involved in a “Fear Factor” contest someday.
SpongeBob Squarepants Movie
tried watching “SpongeBob Squarepants” on a few different occasions
and the novelty of the show has always mystified me. “Ren and Stimpy”
got me through the twilight of my high school years. That was fun
in a knock on ‘50s culture in a subtle way. That and if you watched
it in a delirious, sleep-deprived state, you’d implode from laughter.
I just don’t get SpongeBob. Maybe I was watching the lesser episodes.
Maybe the lead in my balls was weighing me down. But then I realized
the trick to making anything funny. This technique got me through
some messy breakups and getting over my gambling addiction. It’s also
helped me figure out the meaning of life.
sleep. Just deprive yourself of sleep long enough and it all falls
into place. All answers will be revealed.
the time I saw SpongeBob, I hadn’t slept for three days. Delirium
coursed through my veins, like my disdain for Jerry Bruckheimer.
I didn’t mind SpongeBob as much. Chances are, if you like the TV show,
you’ll love the movie. But if not, you’ll probably feel like you’re
under the influence.
Neverland is one of seemingly a thousand
biopics out this season. This one is about J.M. Barrie, the man who
wrote Peter Pan and the inspiration and events leading up to
the writing of that play.
average person’s going to watch this and find Johnny Depp’s portrayal
of Barrie kind of disturbing: A man hanging out with Kate Winslet
and her four sons with no romantic interest in the woman at all.
matter how you feel about Depp’s pretty-boy status, you’ve got to
respect him as an actor. The way he plays this brilliant space cadet
who refuses to grow up just seems so effortless, and it’s really great
to take in a performance like that. You sort of get pissed off when
you think of the possibility that Depp may not get and Oscar for it.
Neverland is a great movie. It’s almost
dreamlike, consistent with the tone of the story that Barrie spawned.
When you walk out of the theater, you’ll almost be upset that you
have to or had to grow up. I always am, but even more so after watching
Jones: The Edge of Reason
going to admit something to you people. What I’m about to admit to
you is something that not very many people know, and those who do
are under the impression that they are holding something over my head.
The fact of the matter is that I have enough to blackmail them for
eight lifetimes and can have the FBI at their respective homes within
twenty minutes on suspicion of murder.
I’m pretty safe. And to those I just mentioned—up yours.
why am I about to give up my ace in the hole? Call it lack of shame,
call it an unwanted burden, call it what you want. But I actually
liked Bridget Jones’ Diary.
was a fun movie. It had silliness. It was mindless fluff that showed
other people in worse situations than I’ve ever been in. It made me
not mind Renee Zellweger so much. It had bad weather, terrible food,
and inhibited any desire I had/have to visit England for that much
longer. It was a feel-good movie that made me feel good (or at least
better) at the expense of others. To me, that’s what entertainment
is all about.
they have to make another one. And they do this by making Zellweger
gain even more weight and rehash the first Bridget Jones movie in
the least interesting ways possible. A series of mindless episodes
that could have been told in any order. It’s like the English remade
the “Mary Tyler Moore” series, but less interesting.
know that most if not all women feel that there’s a little Bridget
Jones in each and every one of them. And it’s this belief that will
pull them into the theater and probably fuel the production of a third
and even more unfortunate Bridget Jones movie. But as for us guys,
it makes us love (or at least not mind) the rakish prick that is Hugh
Grant’s character that much more.
know the question still stands, “was Bridget Jones: The Edge of
Reason worth seeing?” If you can’t really afford the lobotomy
right now, yes. This will tide you over. If you’re running low on
hatred, yes. But if you’re looking for eight dollars worth of laughs,
read somewhere that Pierce Brosnan is hanging up his tux and the James
Bond role because he doesn’t want to get pigeon-holed or type-cast.
Well, that’s all well and good, but he’s giving up Bond to do heist
movies. You know, so he doesn’t get type-cast.
brings us to After the Sunset. Chock-full of logic-defying
action, shady characters and Salma Hayek’s ample and delightful bosom.
It’s another in a series of well-made yet crappy heist movies that
make you thankful that your wristwatch has a light, but ungrateful
that you can’t spot a terrible movie a mile away.
got a good cast. Woody Harrelson and Don Cheadle round it out, but
for the most part, After the Sunset is pretty square. You’ll
want to drop two hits of ecstasy before you hit the theater. Take
enough of that shit and every trip to the movies will be a winner.
Just don’t puke and drink plenty of fluid.
know that everyone’s going to seem exceptionally beautiful, but try
to refrain from telling them that. They’ll think you’re some kind
of weirdo. Now that I think about it, you’re better off ditching the
movie and going home. Listen to some Electric Light Orchestra. God
knows that you’re not going to like it under any other set of circumstances.
amazing how pissed some parents will get if they see you drinking
Remy Martin in a theater during a kids’ movie. Throw the three PCP-laced
joints you smoked in the parking lot while disdainfully watching sports
bar patrons with a hooker who promised you an express elevator to
hell-of-a-night ahead into the equation, and you’ve got a recipe for
ugliness, my friends.
does it taste good…!
my defense, I’m going to start by saying that I didn’t know it was
a kids’ movie. It was dark, ugly, and without the cheer that other
holiday films display with a saccharine touch. The previews certainly
didn’t leave me with that impression. It looked like a documentary.
A metaphor that would detail, in a line-by-line fashion, everything
that was wrong with Christmas, the most famous of all pagan holidays.
It seemed like an open letter to Mel Gibson. A painful reminder and
stern response to The Passion of the Christ.
ugly caricatures of Tom Hanks! A revolving door of gawking, staring,
condescension. A portrait of a man who only works one night a year.
It was maddening!
the stewing rage, the booze, the
drugs medication taking hold,
and the nagging call girl buzzing in my ear, I discovered a newfound
ability to rip out a row of seats after just one try. Rippling biceps,
the ability to subdue security with harsh language, and the ability
to recite De La Soul is Dead verbatim while simultaneously
mimicking Mayor Quimby from “The Simpsons.” I was unstoppable! Unstoppable,
I tell you!
next thing I knew, I woke up in El Segundo with my wallet missing.
I don’t know if it was the hooker’s doing, but someone had the fruit
punch. My friend Carl picked me up a few days later and we lived off
of the ketchup and mustard packets from the floor of his car on the
I had the whole thing to do over again, I would’ve skipped the hooker
(whom I was too tripped out to touch) and spent a little more time
in El Segundo. And I would’ve seen it in IMAX3-D (which is actually
an open option). This would’ve been a whole different trip in 3-D
an old joke: What’s the difference between a Harley and a vacuum cleaner?
you put the dirt bag.
I always liked this joke not because I thought it was funny, but because
I thought it was true. But oh how my prejudices and misconceptions
were dispelled when I saw Seed of Chucky.
until I saw this movie, my most memorable and favorite movie going
encounter was when I saw Showgirls at the now closed Como theater
for $1.50. That experience involved hicks with smuggled booze and
their ultimate discharge from the venue, masturbating Eastside exhibitionist
thugs, and angry-as-fuck-lesbians. Seed of Chucky involved
about twenty bikers, barbecue, three kegs of Pabst Blue Ribbon, and
tossing a pigskin around.
I thought morticians knew how to party! The ringleader was Bear, a
portly, but jolly hog-rider whose life was changed back in the ‘70s
when he read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance in the
hospital after a bad wipeout on his bike.
that Saturday morning, the gang invited me in as if I were one of
their own. Bear knew the theater manager, so our unregulated and highly
illegal activities went unquestioned, even by the fire detector.
you watch what promises to be a bad movie in good company, sometimes
those promises get broken. Seed of Chucky was pretty funny.
One part of it had Jennifer Tilly in a movie-within-the-movie about
Chucky. She’s trying to play The Virgin Mary in a flick Method Man
is making, but it doesn’t work out, so Chucky wants to impregnate
her. She’s got plenty of great lines. John Waters shows up; there’s
the child of Chucky who’s named Glen or Glenda (an homage to Ed Wood),
and full frontal doll nudity. Not to mention Chucky masturbating.
know it’s not exactly Bridge on the River Kwai, but it has
the good sense to make fun of itself and the term “it’s so bad it’s
good” definitely applies here.
special thanks to Bear and company. If you guys are in town for Christmas,
I’m definitely up for meeting up to see The Aviator. You bring
the deep fryer; I’ll bring the turkey…