I Have Left My Mark

Movie Mistakes.com has posted my error about Terminator, The:

After the Terminator is destroyed, Sarah Connor is loaded into the ambulance
feet-first. In real ambulances, the patient’s head is closest to the front, not
the back.

I cribbed that bit of information from Encyclopedia Brown, werd, before I ever rode in an ambulance. Cannot report first hand about the orientation in the business end of a hearse, though.

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Battle of the Voices: Tara Reid Versus Joey Lauren Adams

This month’s Barron’s asserts that the cover girl mutual fund Tara Reid has a sexy voice. I performed a bit of due dilligence so that I could properly compare her voice to another luminary of the field: Joey Lauren Adams.

Both have a whisper quality to them, which conveys an immediate intimacy. You have to pay attention (of course, it helps that both Tara and Joey rate highly on the *.that scale) to their words.

However, in head-to-head (or larynx-to-larynx) competition, Joey’s voice is a little smokier, a little huskier, a little more babada-babada-boom (sorry to borrow your expression, Mrs. Griswold, but understand you are not up for consideration tonight). Advantage: Joey Lauren Adams!

Thankfully, though, both women have chosen to use their powers for good (acting) and not evil (telemarketing). If they had chosen the dark path, undoubtedly they could have wreaked havoc. Undoubtedly, men’s households would have more Time-Life Books and the back windows of their vehicles would have more law enforcement association stickers on them.

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Movie Review: Donnie Darko

Based on recommendations from “Burning Eye” Cullina and Robert Prather, I borrowed Donnie Darko on DVD from Adam’s House of Grilling and DVDs last weekend. I watched it tonight as part of the “Heather’s Not Here Watch DVDs Until I Collapse Feature.”

Well, I was very disappointed. I thought there’d be some barking and crawling around by a sexy chick, but then I realized this movie starred the wrong Gyllenhaal. Hey, cut me some slack, if you didn’t know there was more than one, how many Gyllenhaals would you expect to find in show business? Granted, Maggie had a small role in this film, but it would have been so bad to….. well, never mind.

So I popped in the DVD and was treated to what amounted to 113 minutes of Gothic John Hughes meets American Beauty.

Actually, you want to know the movie to which I want to compare it most easily? Pump Up The Volume for the sheer quantity of red wine drunk by the authority figures when lounging at home. Do a double feature of the two and you’ll agree.

Perhaps I am reflecting upon the movie too quickly after viewing it. Maybe this is, in fact, one of those movies that you need to think about and discuss. However, I have quite a bit of faith in my perceptions of storytelling (of which moviemaking is a subset), and when confronted with a movie that makes me think too much, I just assume the artiste with the bullhorn on the set was incompetent. Sorry, such is the case here.

I am being gracious and avoiding spoilers, friends, because I realize that you might enjoy the film otherwise (you simpleton). Still, the matter’s open for debate over a couple of yummy Guinness Draughts, Adam or Robert, should you choose.

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I Did It! Almost a Movie Review of The Long Goodbye

Well, friends, I am pleased to have made it through the entirety of The Long Goodbye, a Robert Ctrl-Alt-Deleteman travesty based on a novel by Saint Raymond Chandler. And by made it through, I admit it’s not the first time I tried.

You see, here at Honormoor, tradition holds that when Heather leaves town, Brian J:

  1. Laments the home without the beautiful wife.
  2. Counts the hours until her return, and decides to soldier on.
  3. Pours a yummy Guinness Draught.
  4. Rearranges the den so that the recliner takes its deserved prominence before the television.
  5. Procures a folding table to hold the remote, the aforementioned yummy Guinness Draught, and the reading material (Barron’s, Harper’s, The Atlantic Monthly, Esquire, and so on).
  6. Inserts The Long Goodbyeinto the PlayStation 2 DVD player.
  7. Tries to struggle through the lingering close-ups and extraneous emoting Altman demands.

This time, though, I made it through. Last time Heather was AFT (Away From Town), I only made it to the conversation between Wade and his wife describing the impotence of the writer with the innovative use of the reflection of Marlowe on the beach. When I passed that mark this time, though, I startled a cat with a loud “Huzzah!”

So what’s good about the film?

  • Elliot Gould as Philip Marlowe. Of course, Gould’s done a lot of the audiobook versions of Chandler’s novels, so I am used to his narration.
  • Speaking of which, Marlowe does a lot of talking-to-himself asides (when wandering out of earshot of other characters), and these asides are properly in the voice I would expect from the Chandler detective.
  • As a viewer from 30 years in the future, I was interested in the contemporary settings into which Altman placed the (then) 30-year-old Marlowe. The depiction of L.A. in 1973 was interesting in itself.

What’s bad?

  • Running a Chandler plot through an Altman prism? Double plus ungood.
  • Lingering about six beats too many on plot points or conversations that do not advance the script.
  • Marlowe never finds out about his cat.
  • The ending, in which Marlowe….well, it would never fly today as it flew then. Not in a blockbuster which appealed to the unwashed masses for whom Chandler was actually writing. It was too abrupt, as though Altman knew he’d expended two hours on irrelevant closeups and repeated renditions of the title song and had to cut something like “plot.”

So if you’re a Chandler fan, I’d recommend viewing it. It’s not The Big Sleep or The Big Sleep, but Gould might make a better Marlowe than Bogart or Mitchum. Until The Blue Dahlia comes out on DVD, we Chandlerites have to choose our battles among those who would dare interpret his work on screen.

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Another Actor Succumbs to the Predator Curse

Arnold Schwarzenegger is the second actor to to succomb to the Predator Curse.

The Predator curse seems to be that actors who starred in the movie Predator, some years after the filming of the movie, become governors of states. Jesse Ventura was the first. Can Carl Weathers be far behind?

This brings to mind two considerations:

  1. I would vote for Kevin Peter Hall to replace B. Holden in Missouri;
  2. I hope this curse doesn’t extend to Predator 2, because that would mean Danny Glover is likely to get it and become governor of New York, and I wouldn’t wish that on any state, even New York.

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Hollywood Scientists Discover Cure for Sapphism

Hollywood scientists today have announced that they have found a cure for sapphism. Sapphism is an affliction known to, well, afflict innumerable sorority sisters, cheerleaders, housewives, and female prison inmates as well as other members of society, as studies (well, visits to the local non-chain video store) have shown.

The cinemackly-proven treatment for this affliction: the Ben Affleck character.

In the first trial, Chasing Amy, Ben Affleck’s “character,” a comic book illustrator of a singular facial expression, cures Joey Lauren-Adams’ character of rampant and visible Sapphism. Although this first trial was promising, Hollywood scientists were cautious, not yet proclaiming their discovery.

However, in a second trial, Gigili, the Ben Affleck character, a person of undoubtedly immobile visage, cures the Jennifer Lopez character, inducing her to seduce a male with such come-hither lines as “It’s turkey time. Come on, gobble gobble.” (as reported by researcher Dr. Drudge.)

In double-blind studies, the Ben Affleck character was not found to cause harm to straight males (the Good Will Hunting study) or females not afflicted with Sapphism (the Bounce trial, among others). Scientists are encouraged by these findings and hope to submit the Ben Affleck character for FDA approval.

Competeing scientists, afraid of being locked out of a Ben Affleck character patent, have begun studying similar compounds such as the Bruce Affleck character or the AFLAC duck character in hopes of producing a similar affect. Early tests of these generic alternatives, however, are not promising.

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Forget Freddy Versus Jason

If you want to get me into a movie theater to see a match between two tough guys, let’s see:

Michael Ironside (V: The Final Battle, Total Recall, Starship Troopers)
Tommy Lee Jones (Under Siege, The Fugitive, Men in Black)

It would be a tough call to determine who would survive or win such a head-to-head , but don’t forget Tommy Lee Jones did radio ads for Albert Gore in 2000, whereas Michael Ironside once starred in a movie with Arnold Schwarzengovernor. Advantage: Ironside!

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Moore’s New Tautology Thriller

In defense of his comedy Bowling for Columbine, which critics have pointed out sometimes reflects reality kinda like Silly Putty does, Michael Moore has been quoted as saying “The facts in the movie are correct.”

With that in mind, I would like to add:

  • Michael Moore won an Oscar for his work.
  • Michael Moore is a gnork.
  • Morpolians from the third planet of the Ponolia system have begun controlling the thoughts of auditors who count voting results for the Academy.

I assure you, the facts in this posting are correct. The ad hominems and outright fictions, on the other hand…..

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Musings on the Matrix, Part VII

Yo, mainstream, get a schnucking clue. Everyone, at least everyone who’s a sensitive albino, is throwing a shoe over the presentation of the Twins as lightly pigmented. Albinactivists are roaring as loud as they can about the poor light in which these characters portray albinos, since most albinos really don’t know martial arts. Or something.

However, textual evidence in the movie would lead one to think that the Twins were not albinos, but ghosts. Remember, they talk about how supernatural-esque beings representing problem programs in the Matrix. Remember, Primeridian keeps old flawed programs like werewolves (two of whom Persephone shoots with silver bullets) around. Ergo, when confronted with a pair of pale characters who can discorporate at will, I don’t think of albinos, I think of ghosts.

Unless the albino community has something they’re keeping from us.

(On another note, do you think my characterization of Merovingian as “Primeridian” is enough of an offense to the greater geek community to be banished from the Elgeeksian Fields, or has my frequent escapades as an ad hoc software tester already taken care of that?)

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Point-Counterpoint: Neo Good or Neo Bad?

Okay, Matrix fans. Is Neo good, or does Neo sux?

Personal verdict: You can take the Neo out of the Matrix, but you cannot take the Ted ‘Theodore’ Logan/Johnny Utah/Eddie Kasalivich out of the Neo. The producers knew GIGO, but also knew AIGOK (Anything In, Garbage Out of Keanu), so they spent the extra money they would have paid to a scriptwriter on leather futures. And made a killing.

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The Plucky Little Mother Who Could [Alter Copyrighted Works Without Permission]

The Ladies Home Journal, in their May 2003 issue, presents a story in their “Life Stories: Controversy” section called “Screen Saviours” that depicts the story of one Marlo Garrett, a plucky, inspirational woman not afraid to take on Big Hollywood.

You see, Ms. Garrett runs something called Clean Cut Cinemas. Clean Cut Cinemas is one of those houses that takes whole movies and cuts out the naughty bits, whether swearing or nudity or sexual situations, and then redistributes the bowdlerized work. Unlike the online stories covering the story of the lawsuits in Colorado filed by CleanFlicks to enable this gross violation of copyright, the Ladies Home Journal definitely favors the triumph of this family’s values over the property rights inherent in intellectual and creative works protected by copyright.

This is the other side’s story. A woman and mother wants to provide family-ready hit entertainment. Of course, the artists and big Hollywood are lining up against her, and copyright holders everywhere are cringing. Although her motives are purer than a thirst to be slaked by a quick buck, she and related companies and actions would reduce any author or moviemaker to the role of one of n monkeys with typewriters, eligible for revision by whatever gorilla comes along with a red pen.

Hopefully, the movie studios and directors will come to their senses and start seeing the opportunity for additional bonus features on DVDs that include a family-friendly release of popular movies, maybe even for five bucks more a disc. Undoubtedly this will bring Aggressive Agitator Parents (AAPs) to their lawmakers with lawn rakes and Citronella torches, protesting a “family tax” dictated by the market, but it would represent the market, and not the government, at work.

Our world would be a better place if these super parents, who have time on their hands to have a career AND run a successful Internet business, can turn the ample attention they spend while their children sit stupified before a Disney version of Reservoir Dogs to better things, such as revising James Joyce’s Ulysses so it’s readable and suitable for families. In that better world, I’ll broaden my mind with whatever paragraph is left of formerly great literature.

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