by Michael Gildea
The Butterfly Effect
Fucking Ashton Kutcher. He’s got a big part on a reasonably funny show, he’s dated/fucked a famous skank, and then dated the Queen Skank. Hell, he’s even got an unfunny MTV show that the most brain-dead of dingleberries find, for some indefinable reason, amusing. But now the little pretty-boy prick’s got to take over the world, and diversify his talents by actually acting. If the little shitweasel’s secret weapon is his acting ability, our beloved mud-ball can sleep well. You can grasp the concept of The Butterfly Effect by watching the old “Simpson’s Treehouse of Horror,” in which Homer steps on a bug after creating a time machine out of a toaster. Grandpa even warns him not to step on a bug, because the future would forever be altered. If America’s favorite oaf is dumb enough to not heed some old-time advice, what makes you think that Demi Moore’s old ego boost is going to figure it out? This gives us a psychological thriller that relies entirely too much on special effects, and leaves little to the easily baited viewer’s imagination. You won’t have to think too much. So, to ruin this piece of shit for every teenybopper in the theater who thinks Ashton is so dreamy, I stood up and howled “YYYESSSSSSS!” in that true Kelso style whenever the audience seemed especially unnerved by the child molestation themes, or whenever Ethan Suplee (Willem from Mallrats) showed up as the girthy goth kid. The ushers tried to kick me out, and I faked spasms and overacted when I sobbed, “W-w-what-t-t-t-t’s hhhhhhappppppennnning to m-m-m-m-me?” They shut me up with free nacho bites and extra liquid cheese. I definitely gave the best acting performance in the theater that day…
Win a Date with Tad Hamilton
A big-time movie star (Josh Duhamel) has a contest to (you guessed it) win a date as a publicity stunt after he winds up on the front page of a tabloid. What Mr. Hot Shit doesn’t count on is that he falls in love with the so-sweet-her-smile-could-send-you-into-sugar-shock hometown girl (Kate Bosworth), while one of her best friends (Topher Grace) secretly pines for her. Will Miss Sweetcakes pick the safe bet or be whisked away to Hollywood for a life of red carpets and regular pictorials in US magazine? How the fuck should I know? Do you actually think I pissed away an hour and a half of my life to sit through this shit? Do you think I’m that much of a movie fanatic that I’d go and see every little piece of fluff that finds its way to a gigantic screen? You want the truth? YOU WANT THE DAMN TRUTH? I cried, all right? I cried myself to sleep, and I woke up to an usher jabbing me in the ribs with a broom, thinking me a homeless person. He called me crazy, I called him cold, and he called the cops. Then I called BEAST publisher Paul Fallon to come and bail me out of jail. Guerrilla journalism brought to you as only THE BEAST can…
The Big Bounce
The best thing about nabbing one of those free sneak passes from any given shop on Elmwood is that you can’t lose, or so I always thought. I haven’t been to one of these previews in a while, and when I stepped into the flourescently-lit theater, I forgot that the lowest common denominator of the movie-going public always shows up to these things. And they always smell like Hickory Farms gift-boxes of meat. Plus, they always run into some other Cosby sweater-clad shitgoose they know and yell across the theater about what movies they’ve recently seen (“BIG FISH WAS GOOD! DIFFERENT, BUT GOOD!”). To spite the masses, I took it upon myself to win every promotional item that 97 Rock was offering that night, much to the dismay of the fat bastard a few rows back who pointed this out to the rest of the theater’s occupants, who wanted my blood when there wasn’t one more Big Bounce t-shirt up for grabs. As for the movie, it just kind of plopped. I normally get excited as a fruit fly at Marcella’s whenever an Elmore Leonard novel finds its way onto the big screen, but The Big Bounce was not Out of Sight, Jackie Brown, or Get Shorty. It had a few fun moments, and Owen Wilson did a great job of playing the same character he usually plays. The twists were even more anticlimactic than the third Matrix movie. Aside from my usual screw-over on the film-going public, there was a great scene with Willie Nelson and Harry Dean Stanton, and the preview for Starsky and Hutch was hilarious.
The Perfect Score
A bunch of high-schoolers, worried about their futures, decide to steal the answers to the SAT tests. Which is pretty damn convenient, seeing how they all live in the town that serves as home base to the SATs. The Perfect Score comes off like a cross between The Breakfast Club and the remake of Ocean’s 11, except it’s nowhere near as good as either of them. It’s directed by Brian Robbins, who you may remember as the Fonzie wannabe on that shitty ‘80s show “Head of the Class.” He also directed such classics as Hardball, Good Burger, and Varsity Blues; movies that are the equivalent to throwing a fight, as far as career moves are concerned. Rumor has it that Scarlett Johansson (this month’s up and coming It girl, star of Lost in Translation and Girl with a Pearl Earring) skipped the wrap party, and cried herself to sleep after finishing the filming on this one. And to anyone who may be sweating the SATs: I never took my SATs in high school and look where I ended up! The world is your oyster…
You Got Served
This movie epitomizes one of the many reasons why I hate this time of year. All the good movies have come out, and now there’s nothing left. It’s like working retail as your only source of income. Right up through New Year’s, you’re getting around forty hours a week, but a week after Christmas you’re getting eight hours, and syphilis, because you have to suck dick for gas money. It’s a nasty, nasty cycle, and I thank God every day for DVD players. As for You Got Served, it’s about respect and money, crews breakdancing and dancing otherwise, competition and territoriality, not backing down from a motherfucker and keeping your rep, backstabbing and getting shit done. But Jesus thought about them, because he thought about all things. If all he said and did was written, there would be no volume large enough to contain the detail. So they ponder in dialect. And the dawn creeps up on them, reminding them to go to sleep for a few hours. Hopefully, the feeling they had upon shutting their eyes is the feeling that will persist until nine. For it is then that their youthful ideals will be put to the test. When they come up against the commercial world and the awakening activity of everyday life. That’s the kind of shit that happens when you watch this movie. Your mind wanders under every stone and into every crevasse. You know all and mystery no longer exists to you. And word has it that the sequel, Electric Boogaloo, will hit theaters early next year.
Back in the beginning of 1998, I went to see a movie called Mighty Joe Young, at what was at the time the $1.50 movies. I went to see it for three reasons. 1) It was 7:30 and the bars didn’t get hopping until around 11, 2) I love giant computer animated gorillas, 3) Charlize Theron was in it. I went to see Monster for one of those reasons, being the third. With her role in Mighty Joe Young, Theron just had to look good, and be nice to an imaginary character. But in Monster, she’s required to do the opposite, and I think she did great on both counts. If you’re looking for the typical Charlize Theron role where, if nothing else, she’ll be hot, you’re barking up the wrong tree. Theron gained thirty pounds, and sported buckteeth, creepy black contact lenses, and a hideous she-mullet to play Aileen Wournos, America’s first female serial killer. Wournos killed seven men before she was convicted and executed in 2002. While Monster is not Charlize’s most glamorous role, it is definitely her best, and also her best performance. Every single thing she does in this movie proves her capabilities given the right role. The downside is that performances this great usually come from movies that are depressing as all hell. Watching the abuse and pain that Wournos went through just makes you feel profoundly sad and sorry for the woman. Normally, I’d be all over a lesbian scene between Charlize Theron and Christina Ricci, but in this case, I was too depressed and disgusted to appreciate it. While Monster is not exactly the feel good movie of the year, it’s definitely the most heartbreaking, and definitely one of the best.