Buffalo BEAST - Buffalo's New Best Fiend
 

May 4-May 18, 2005

Issue #74

  .........................Buffalo's Best Fiend
SHILL YOUR TELEVISION
Musn't-See TV
SUPER WHORES
Democrats Sucking for America
by Matt Taibbi
VOTE DEPRECIATION
The Falling Value of Domocracy
by Russ Wellen
TAKE ME OUT TO THE CLEANERS
Stadiums & Phony Capitalism
by Matt Taibbi
CON & PRO
Spirited Debate on the Filibuster

USA TOMORROW: 2125
Tomorrow's News Today!

by Ian Murphy

HIPPIE SWITCHES TO ORGANIC ROLLING PAPERS
For Earth Day

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Buffalo in Briefs
Separated At Birth
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Kino Korner
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[SIC] - Your Letters
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film reviews by Michael Gildea

 

XXX: State of the Union

And with the first completely mindless action film of the year comes the official summer movie pummeling. This year’s first punch comes in the form of XXX: State of the Union. I guess it can be called a punch, but it’s more like the kind of punch you see some chachi assclown throw down on Chippewa. You know, after he’s been drinking those candyass krunk juice drinks all night and didn’t bother to throw the occasional street-wiener down his throat to keep himself in check. And of course, he doesn’t connect and hits the pavement...

Apparently, the producers of XXX were under the deluded impression that they had a cash cow on their hands, a James Bond for the new millennium, as I believe it was once described. What they failed to realize was that the reason that the original XXX did so well was because of Vin Diesel. The man is bait for hordes of gay men and dumpy girls everywhere. You base a mindless action flick—which will automatically attract dumb straight males anyway—on that kind of fanbase, and you’re going to do pretty well for yourself.

Now, due to some salary dispute, the human antelope has bowed out and we’re left with Ice Cube. Admittedly, XXX: State of the Union is better than Are We There Yet, but that’s neither here nor there. That’s like ranking 33 on a top ten list. When you see Ice Cube cast as the lead in a movie like this, it means about ten other guys turned it down. Let’s face it: the guy’s fat. In real life, he’d get about thirty seconds into one of these action sequences, then he’d have to sit down, breathe real hard, and take a shower.

The plot’s hilarious, even though the main ingredients are cheese and corn. An evil secretary of defense wants to assassinate the president and half the cabinet. He gets a bunch of terrorists who look like Darth Vader to put out the hit and well, if you saw the original XXX or any James Bond movie, you get the idea...

If you constantly walk around like you’re carrying two imaginary pails of water, you’ll probably love this movie. You’ll probably shout “fuck yeah” sporadically throughout the painful hour and forty-minute running time, and any woman who sleeps with you has a sever self-esteem deficiency. But if you’ve been in a constant state of despondency since you found out that a Pink Panther remake’s hitting the screens later this summer, save your money. Take the money you would have spent on the ticket, buy some cheap beer, and crawl further down that hole, because it’s probably not going to get any better than this.

 

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

If you bear even the slightest human resemblance to Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons, you are aware that The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is based on a book or series of books by Douglas Adams. If you’ve never even heard of the damn thing, picture the demented lovechild of Dr. Who and Monty Python, conceived during a debaucherous spring evening of Harp lager, entirely too much soggy fish and chips, topped off with some not so consensual sodomy in a Canterbury flat.

Personally, I never read the books. All of the young men who were wearing the Elvis Costello t-shirts and horn-rimmed glasses that wonderfully compliment their hounds-tooth blazers and generally sullen demeanor as they elitistly sauntered into the theater did, I imagine.

And laughed like fools, they did! You’d think they were more excited to see this movie than the new Star Wars movie. They laughed at the smallest things as they sat in the theater seats.

As for myself, I didn’t know what the hell was going on. Oh sure, there were some mildly amusing moments here and there, but for the most part, I got the feeling that most of what was happening on screen was a series of in-jokes. And unless you’ve read these books time and time again, you’re probably going to be lost. Or at least not really enjoy it.

Even though I looked at my watch at least seventeen times throughout the movie and I couldn’t wait for it to be over, I somehow felt that it was done right, a movie specifically for the fans of the source material. Not worrying about if some dickweed film executive is going to find it marketable or some pretentious film geek would rate it right up there with Fellini’s 8 ½. Bravo to that, but if you haven’t read the books, go see Sin City.

 

A Lot Like Love

Certain movies appeal to a respective audience. Cartoons tend to appeal to children. Action films usually appeal to guys. And A Lot Like Love appeals to idiots. Or people with no taste at all.

It’s just a When Harry Met Sally knock-off with none of the wit and even less talent, and that statement’s coming from someone who can’t stand Meg Ryan. Ashton Kutcher and Amanda Peet have reached a whole new level of annoying in this movie, an 11 out of 10 on the Gilbert Godfrey scale.

It starts off terrible and keeps getting worse and worse. And if you think that scene from the trailer where Kutcher is singing that awful Skid Row song is bad, you haven’t heard anything. Or maybe it was a Bon Jovi song. Anyway, it’s a Jersey band and everything in Jersey is broke. If that snippet wasn’t bad enough to make you stick your head in the oven, the rest of the movie will have you running to the closest active volcano to go skinny-dipping.

 

House of D

Did you ever wonder what the hell happened to David Duchovny after he left “The X-Files?” Neither did I. But it turns out he made a self-indulgent movie loaded with sappy sentiment and nails-on-the-chalkboard dramatic moments. And he stuck his wife Tea Leoni into it, as his mother.

House of D is pretty bad. It starts off with Duchovny playing an artist, living, of course, in Paris. For one reason or another, he reflects on his childhood and thinks back about his depressive mother and mentally retarded best friend, played, of course, by Robin Williams.

Then things just get more nauseating as he goes back to his old Greenwich Village stomping grounds thirty years later.

I can’t really imagine that there are people out there who actually want to be depressed and bored, but I know they’re out there. House of D is the flick for them. Picture the sun not shining for three months. Take that collective feeling, condense it into a little less than two hours and this is what you get. I was actually disappointed to find out that it wasn’t another Vampire Hunter D sequel, but those are the breaks.

 

The Interpreter

The Interpreter is such a damn shame. I say this because we’ve got a pair of talented actors, a pair of  talented Oscar-winning actors in a movie that’s so incredibly boring that you can’t even enjoy the performances. There’s the most mind numbing espionage plot slathered with dozens of aspects of the story that are supposed to be interesting and aren’t.

Or maybe Sean “buzzkill at the Oscars” Penn and Nicole “I got ugly for an Oscar and it worked” Kidman just got really dull when they read this. Watching a movie like this is like a month of Sundays wrapped into a few hours. Imagine being part of the process in making it. I know this whole thing was probably a complete and total drag to make, but come on! Run some outtakes during the credits or something. Jesus!

You’ve seen this movie about a thousand other times. Mainly when you lost the coin toss when you went to the movies with your well-to-do uncle. The worst part of The Interpreter is that it didn’t have the obligatory sex scene that the numerous other variations of this story contained. Making said sex scene no longer mandatory.

For me at least, I can sit through just about anything if there’s a good performance involved. And it’s usually to watch one of these two actors work. Maybe they cancelled each other out in this case. Maybe they negated each other like The Hulk and Nick Nolte at the end of The Hulk. Instead of ambient energy being ingested in their case, I think Penn and Kidman absorbed all of the life out of their audience. The only thing that saved me from being turned into a rotting husk in a theater was the Episode III trailer before the movie.

 

King’s Ransom

Anthony Anderson. Jay Mohr.

If you need further explanation as to why this movie would be a complete and total waste of your time and money you deserve to lose it all. With any luck, you’ll lose the soul you already lost while watching Anthony Anderson play Frankie Muniz’ bitch in the Agent Cody Banks movies..

“But Charlie Murphy is in it! The darkness!” Shut up and tuck it between your legs for a few more weeks. The second season of Chappelle’s Show comes out on DVD soon. Bitches.

 

Kung-Fu Hustle

Finally. A movie to hit the theaters that doesn’t require self-medication to enjoy.

True, it is the end of an era when you see a kung-fu movie that adopts all of the computer technology elements of The Matrix. But if you weren’t weaned on martial arts movies, you should be entertained. There’s enough bizarre humor to keep you laughing as they trade off with completely outlandish fight scenes.

But you don’t bitch because if you wanted a substantial movie, you’d be dying of boredom in the next theater over as you watched The Interpreter. You’re there to have fun and watch total random acts of computer-generated violence involving people who were utterly consumed by an eightball and opium cocktail.

I was so inspired by Kung-Fu Hustle that I ran into the nearest Chinese buffet with a pair of foam nunchucks, shouting nonsensical gibberish and swinging at anyone I could get near. Of course, the proprietor threw a steam pan full of lo mein in my face and spin-kicked me in the head, bringing me down to earth in record time.

So that’s how that egg roll got up my ass...

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