Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Shit I'd Like Movies to Stop Doing

Movies! Who doesn't love them? "No one" is the answer. But the fact of the matter is about 5000 movies come out a year (citation needed) and only about four of them are good--and they're usually directed by Christopher Nolan.

I myself am a movie junkie. There's many a time where I'll melt a DVD or Blu Ray down on a giant spoon, and inject the liquid goop into my veins. Mmm, the warmth of it all.

So it is with my keen and observant knowledge of all things film that I would like to present a list of SHIT I'D LIKE MOVIES TO STOP DOING, counting down from 5 to 1.

5. People falling down/getting hit in the balls/getting hurt in comedy movie trailers.

Now, don't get me wrong. People falling down is funny. If I'm in the subway and I see an old man fall onto the tracks, I let off a good chortle or two. But nothing turns me off of a comedy movie more than a scene in a trailer where a character falls/gets hit in the junk. 

Think about it, this is in nearly EVERY comedy movie trailer ever. It's not so much the act that bothers me, it's the cartoony sound-effects that accompany it, followed sometimes by whatever pop song is playing to suddenly stop, sometimes with a fake record scratch--as if someone was playing some Passion Pit records and suddenly pulled the needle off and said "HOLY SHIT THAT GUY JUST FELL DOWN!"

A recent example was featured in the trailer for The Five-Year Engagement, which I didn't see despite the fact that it features such lovely ladies as Emily Blunt and Alison Brie. In the trailer, Emily Blunt's character spots some little girl holding a crossbow. 

"AREN'T YOU THE CUTEST THING!" says Emily Blunt.

"I'M KATNISS!" says the stupid little girl, referencing the Hunger Games because that's popular with all the kids these days. Then she shoots Emily Blunt in the leg and Emily Blunt almost screams a curse word, but it cuts away real fast. Ha Ha Ha--KILL ME.


Let's Encyclopedia Brown this shit for a moment: first of all, who the fuck sees a child holding a LOADED CROSSBOW and says "HOW CUTE!" Christ, children are monsters. If a child is holding a bottle of shampoo there's a 98 % chance that child will turn that thing into a weapon. So right away, Emily Blunt finding this "cute" stretches logic into the Twilight Zone. Not to mention the stupid pop-culture reference to the Hunger Games, and then the age-old comedy trailer favorite: a character gets hurt and is about to curse and we cut away. "MOTHER FU--" ::in theaters July 2d!!:: 


4. Really bad CGI. 

We are in the 21st century, the age of rocket cars and robot maids. And yet movies continue to feature really shitty CGI effects.

Remember Jurassic Park? That movie came out in 1993, and it has better CGI in it than movies today. HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE? Granted, not every movie has a Spielberg-sized budget. But the solution for that is: if you don't have the money for convincing CGI, don't put a fully CGI character in your movie.

But you know what movie DID have a Spielberg-sized budget? Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull--because he directed that.

And Christ that had some of the worst CGI I've ever seen. I'm looking at you, CARTOON GOPHER that opens the movie:

C'mon, this is blatantly a fucking CARTOON. 

Another good recent example is Wrath of the Titans, that movie no one saw. Here's a pic of the Cyclops from that movie:

Beware the Walking Penis Man!


3. American Remakes of Recent Foreign Films

The Raid recently came out here in STATES. It was a pretty fun movie, full of people beating the shit out of each other. And already they want to remake it for "America." Why? Sure, the Raid is subtitled, but no one is going to see the Raid for the dialog. They want to see foreign people kick each other in the skull. And the reason the fighting in The Raid is so good is because pretty much everyone in that movie is a real martial artist/stunt man.

An American remake will cast some bland actor and use a stunt-double for all his fight scenes. WHY BOTHER?

Perhaps the most egregious recent example of this trend is the remake of Let the Right One In, called LET ME IN. 

Let the Right One In is a near-perfect movie (except for that scene with the awful CGI cats--hey, bad CGI again!). It's a beautiful, heart-felt movie that pumps new blood into the horribly anemic vampire genre. 

Remember this scene? Let's do it again! Only more yellow!

So what do we do?? Remake it! Now--there was room here for something good. For one thing, the original movie was based on the book, and the book has a LOT of stuff in it that the movie doesn't. Filmmaker Matt Reeves had an opportunity to do a more faithful adaptation of the book and make something different. Instead he just did a shot-for-shot remake and added some dumb subplot about a cop looking for Satanists. Thanks, America! 

2. Passing the Torch / Movies skewed towards "younger audiences."

Now, I get it. Movie studios want to make money, and who goes to the movies the most? Dumb kids. So studios have gotten into this mode where most films are skewed towards youth. Have you ever noticed how a lot of movies these days feature casts made up of people who look 19 years old? 

Personally, I call foul on this. When I was a kid, I loved movies that featured ADULTS. Yeah, I liked some movies that had kids, like the Monster Squad. But when I was a kid, I didnt want to BE a kid. I wanted to be an ADULT (note to young me: you're an idiot). So I'd rather watch movies about adults doing adult things--things I could only dream of doing, like shooting people in the face.

Lumped into this is the "passing the torch" idea that has been infecting older franchises. 

Die Hard 4, aka LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD, sucked ass. It had a lot of things wrong with it--especially that PG-13 rating. But one of the worst mistakes it made was trying to appeal to a "younger audience" by giving John McClane a kid-sidekick, played by that guy from Jeepers Creepers. And they're doing it AGAIN with Die Hard 5, which is currently filming and features McClane teaming up with his SON.

I LOVED Die Hard movies when I was younger, and I sure as shit didn't want Bruce Willis running around with some kid. I wanted to see him covered in blood, shooting people and making jokes.

Another example is Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Again, there was a lot wrong with the film (terrible CGI included!). But high on the list of wrongs was adding Indy's son MUTT WILLIAMS. There were several interviews before the film came out where professional moron George Lucas said he could easily see the Indy franchise continuing with MUTT in the lead. NO ONE WANTS TO FUCKING SEE THAT. NO ONE.

"People are going to LOVE that scene where you swing through the trees with some cartoon monkeys!"

Bill Murray caught a lot of flack for refusing to do Ghostbuster 3. Not from me though--I applaud the man. Because do you know what the plot of Ghostbusters 3 was going to be? It was going to be the Ghostbusters training a bunch of new, young Ghostbusters. NO ONE WANTS TO FUCKING SEE THAT EITHER. Do you know why people like the ghostbusters movies? IT'S BECAUSE OF THE GHOSTBUSTERS. They like the original cast, they don't want fucking, Jonah Hill strapping on a proton pack. That's stupid.

I would rather watch a movie with the four original guys, all fucking fat and gross and old, than watch some dumb-ass movie where they train young, hip new ghostbusters.

1. BASED ON A TRUE STORY horror movies.

This is an age-old ploy. I mean, the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre did it for crying out loud. But back then, that was a fresh and cool thing to do. "Oh my god, this movie about a cannibal chainsaw family REALLY HAPPENED!" (it didn't.)

These days, however, every other dumb horror movie that comes out gets slapped with a BASED ON A TRUE STORY or INSPIRED BY TRUE EVENTS. I'm not talking about found-footage movies either.

Recently, The Silent House (which, hey, was an American remake of a recent foreign film! there's a pattern here!) featured INSPIRED BY TRUE EVENTS in both the trailer and on the poster. NO IT WASN'T. STOP LYING. Unless you mean at some point, somewhere, in history, some woman was in a house, then yes I guess it is based on true events.


The Mothman Prophecies is another example. I like that movie, and yes, a lot of the stuff that happened in it was inspired by a true story. But it was also so far removed from what "really" happened that it's just pointless to even put that tag in there. But again, I guess people think that sells tickets. 

Which reminds me, did you know this blog post is BASED ON ACTUAL EVENTS?????????????????????????????????????

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