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Posted 16 Jun 2012The most boring and stupid thing a lazy author can do is to borrow from a classical source, especially the bible, and use it as a template for his fiction. Any time you suspect an author has done so, you will probably be right. Stealing from the Bible is about as cliched as quoting The Wizard of Oz. Any Screenwriting 101 professor would slap you on the wrist fro trying any of this crap. It is neither deep nor original to reference the most-referenced material ever written. It is embarrassing.
The religious nonsense in this movie stood out like a sore thumb and all of this ponderous posturing made a potentially-good dumb monster movie into garbage. I thought this was a beautiful if scientifically flawed film, on the surface. Once the narrative became more and more clear, I felt like I was watching the Matrix sequels as written by George Lucas.
Here's a rule for film producers going forward. It won't be followed, because who am I to dictate rules? but here it is: jot down the names of all the writers who worked on LOST. Memorize the names. NEVER HIRE THESE PEOPLE.
Call me old fashioned, but I prefer films that answer the questions they ask. The ones that leave open questions, well sometimes that is good too, but the questions had better be interesting ones.
For instance: "Where did we come from?" may be interesting in the right context. But "Given that the well-documented process of evolution can now be traced back to the introduction of amino acids into a river in Iceland, and given that it makes no sense that that these amino acids would go on after millennia to form humans (and along the way, numerous species of non-humans), and I say that it makes no sense because we now have a pretty good idea of how evolution works and the idea of demolished DNA strands somehow remembering how to get back together exactly as they once were can only exist WITHOUT that understanding, and given that these amino acids were introduced by an alien species that comes back later as a giant, boring, rampaging Hulk, where did that Hulk come from?" is NOT interesting. It's a parody of the Bible as written by the staff of MAD Magazine.
They had 33 years to make a sequel to ALIEN. Why weren't they ready?
Posted 24 Apr 2011Ok so Jordan mentioned somewhere else that he liked Collateral, the Michael Mann buddy-assassin movie starring Jamie Foxx and Tom Cruise. I just want to take this opportunity to shit all over it, because I thought it was stupid. This is not meant to be an attack on Jordan, nor on his tastes, his character, or personality. If MG joins in and supports either side, however, I will take the opportunity to attack his tastes, his character and his personality, since that's apparently what I do. ( )
Ok so it's a nice looking movie, and it is full of nice looking people. It all takes place at night, so it's all long shadows and street lights, with the occasional night club and gang den thrown in for good measure. It does have a brightly-lit hospital scene somewhere along the way, but mostly it's all nice shadows defining the well-cheekbones and muscular leading men. So, ok, it's pretty. Now I am done saying nice things about it. About 40% of what follows is a cut-and-paste from some comments I made on the IMDB boards. Some of the setups I have stolen from some others who praised the film (these will be in italics); all of the retorts are mine. Some is new, most is old, much has been corrected for typos and so on. The final sentence is not mine, but I think it's funny to end on that.
The story in this film is idiotic. I will summarize it in as briefly as I can: a bad guy is on a mission to kill a lot of people, and he goes from crime to crime in a taxicab. One of his victims is a pretty woman who met the cabbie earlier. The bad guy's plan is to make it look like the cabbie killed everyone and then himself, but in the end the cabbie, spurred on by love for the woman he'd just met (and emboldened by growth experiences from throughout the evening), kills the bad guy instead. The end.
1. All right, the cops and the FBI would have to be pretty stupid for the cover story to work. All of the victims were related to a single court case and were killed professionally, two in the chest and one in the head. Crime scene investigators comment on the expertness of the killings. If this was supposed to be a random spree from a suicidal person, like the one from three years that Mark Ruffalo references, the victims should be unrelated and close together, or directly related to their alleged killer. There should also be bullets everywhere, lots of wasted rounds, maybe even some collateral damage. So the plan is stupid, and only a really forgiving film audience would allow it. Killing the cabbie at the end would just add a victim, not create a patsy. Unless of course the cops and FBI were stupid and thought the cabbie who had been clocking in and taking fares for 12 years was a secret assassin.
So the premise of a killer taking a cab from crime to crime is stupid. Your getaway driver should be an employee, not some random dude who may well fuck things up for you. And all for a cover story that would never fool anyone. You think the DA wouldn't notice that this new killer he was prosecuting had just killed all of the witnesses in another case of his? I think he would have noticed that. The premise is movie magic, a way to squeeze two unlikely partners into a buddy drama. You shouldn't be too acutely aware that you're watching a movie while you're watching it, or you lose your ability to something your something.
And while I am at it, to make the story work we need no witnesses to Vincent (Tom Cruise). So, Vincent would have to go back after killing Max (Jamie Foxx), and kill Max's mother in the hospital, since he went in there to meet her (this really happened in this movie, the killer and his hostage went in to a building full of people with cops and cameras everywhere, to visit the hostage's sick mother). Then he would have killed the cab dispatcher he'd been badgering all night on the radio, despite having no idea where he was or what he looked like. Then he's have to go back for the waitress who saw him with Max, and the bartenders and the doormen at that jazz club, and probably all the other musicians, and everyone else there, as well as everyone at the night club, and then he would have gathered up all the security tapes at the hospital (and the night club) after killing everyone who worked at the hospital, including the people he bought the flowers from, before disappearing like a ghost in a magical puff of incomprehensible movie bullshit. More on all this later, but I have seen Scooby Doo villains with better schemes. In fact, I have not seen a dumber villain plot in a serious film since Arlington Road.
2. One of the "themes" of the movie is chance events changing your life. Such as Vincent nearly taking the next cab instead of Max's. This is the film's "story" method of justifying any nonsensical coincidence it likes, such as having the final intended victim be a woman whom Max had just dropped off where he first meets Vincent. Naturally this is also so the last victim will mean something to the main character. See, in Die Hard this was achieved by letting the bad guy know that Holly was John's wife. What got the two of them in the same building together was the same thing: they were husband and wife. The gal in the cab that Max falls for is a woman he just met, and with whom he had one conversation. And no another person he just met wants to kill her, and to get away in Max's cab. This is a lot harder to swallow than Hans figuring out what it was that brought John to the party. In Collateral, Vincent even comments on how there are 17 million people in the city and that they are geographically separated by huge boroughs and freeways, drawing even more attention to how much a coincidence it is that they would both get into the same cab. Here's another example of this type of coincidence: In Grosse Pointe Blank, this was done by making the target of the intended assassination be the hero's ex-girlfriend's dad. Grosse Pointe Blank was a comedy so the comical coincidence was great. In this film, a drama, it was grating.
3. There's a sequence where Max has to pretend he's a killer so that he can get some information from the guys who hired Vincent. He has to act all cold and killer-like. This is one of those character moments where a guy gets to act different from how he is in the rest of the movie, to show growth. So we all know the narrative purpose this sequence was meant to serve (it will build character), but the bit makes no sense. Vincent is on a mission to kill what, six people, and he's carrying around a briefcase with a million sheets of paper in it? Ok never mind that it's syupid for him to need the info, let's look at how he gets it. The villains have never met Vincent, so they believe that Max is Vincent based on Max acting all cold. In Quick Change, a comedy with Bill Murray, it's funny when Bill Murray pretends to be a bagman and fools some mobsters he's never met, to talk his way out of a bad scene. Again that movie was a comedy, and we don't care that he's able to talk his way out of it. Also it has that exchange where a guy puts a gun in Bill's ass and says "That's not my dick in your ass," to which Bill says "That's a relief." So I can forgive that movie for this silly scene, even if it used to motivate the conflict of the last third of the film. Back to Collateral: even if they had never met Vincent, these guys would have known something about him that would have ferreted Max out immediately. So his going all badass on them to get exactly what he wanted was just something the filmmakers wanted, to show character growth. It made no real sense.
4. The big night club shootout: That club must have been 60000000 square feet, because people were running full tilt for about 2 minutes and they never got near the doors. And any time I have been at a club and the FBI decided to bust in to secure a witness who's hanging out there, they've immediately demanded the house lights up, the music off, and everyone move to the walls, while they walked in, secured the exits, guns out and up. These FBI guys were just running around like idiots, and then they all disappeared. They didn't even, you know, send anyone out back or leave anyone at the front door. They just walked into gunfire for a while before disappearing when their continued presence would make it hard for the story to continue. The moment the excitement was over, both Vincent and Max were able to walk through their carefully drawn net and just drive away.
5. The bit that motivated point 3, when Max ran out of the hospital with Vincent's briefcase: Well I wouldn't have left a killer alone with my mother, but I guess he panicked. I don't have a problem with this, but when you're running from a guy, don't run outside and into the unknown. Run into the secured area of the hospital where all of the cameras and the security guards will be able to document you. The bad guy will know better than to chase you there, unless he's one of those bad guys who can immediately determine where every guard and camera might be, and can shoot cameras without allowing the lenses to focus on him. Ah ... never mind, this is the kind of movie that would have let him do that. After all, this movie had him prefer walking around in a hospital and visiting a patient whose son he plans to kill later to having him, you know, lay low. I wonder when he went back to kill the mother, would the "crime spree crazy cabbie killed himself" story still work? Would the police be able to see him on the security footage afterward, or wouldn't they bother?
While we're at it, did I miss the bit where everyone at the jazz club left so he could kill that guy? Waitresses, patrons, doormen, bartenders, everyone were just gone. They were there in the Wide and Medium shots, then we moved in to close-ups, in the space of a few sentences, and because we can't see the out-of-focus background when we're in a close-up, they were able to disappear by movie magic. I caught the one shot where a waitress walked out a door, but where was everyone else? Did Vincent actually sit in that bar waiting for it to completely empty? And when Vincent revealed his identity, after the waitress had walked out, how did he know he had the time to fuck around and play Trivial Pursuit for another three minutes? How did he know that? Was that really his plan? Or was he ready to kill a few dozen witnesses if need be? That's either one perfect assassin who always knows where people are, no matter what, or that's a really dumb scene.
Oh and all night, while Max is allegedly killing people, Vincent is talking to his dispatcher. Was any of that going to come up later, when in his master plan he was going to pretend that Max was a lone nut who had killed himself? When the cops started interviewing people, was Vincent sure that the dispatcher was not going to mention that he'd apparently had one fare for hours (depending on how long they sat in that jazz bar)? How could he know that the dispatcher would keep quiet? Was he going to go there and kill him too? Before or after the fake suicide? Why was he adding work, adding the dispatcher, Max's mom, and numerous eyewitnesses in the hospital to his hit list? What's wrong with this guy?
Anyway ... when running from a bad guy don't steal his bag, unless you're not worried about him killing your mother. And when you're an assassin and you're already carrying a laptop and all the information you need can fit on a simple thumb drive, why are you also carrying a huge briefcase filled with paperwork? Why even the laptop? You're running around shooting people all night; what do you need the baggage for? Why not have everything on one piece of paper?
But yeah, panic could have been the reason Max ran, sure.
6. The big car crash, where Max deliberately wipes out, in an effort to stop Vincent once and for all. A lot of people complain that the crash was so dramatic that they both should have died, which apparently was Max's goal. I say nay; they could have survived that. That was my first thought when he was asked to drive to the second crime: get on the freeway, drive fast but not too fast, hit the wall. Your airbag or belt (drive more slowly if no airbag) will save your life, his lack of belt (cause he's so macho) will cause his death. Lean left so his flying body won't break your neck as it exits the front window, sit patiently and await the jaws of life. Instead he flips the car on a curb barrier, which by the way is really hard to do but it sure happens a ,lot on the movies. It happens for two reasons: it looks great, and it's really safe. By failing to effect an impact collision, and by allowing the force of the crash to be so well distributed that it looked like a planned stunt, Max made it possible for both victims to walk away. That was bad driving, Max. You should have seen The Last Seduction.
7. Back to the "theme" of chance events: In the final shootout, Max fires wildly, but Vincent does his professional "2 in the heart 1 in the head thing." Sadly for Vincent the doors close at that very moment causing his shots to hit the steel frame of the door and get stopped, while Max's wild shots go through the glass, striking Vincent. This last shootout was dumb, but no dumber than Vincent as Aragorn the assassin tracking his prey across the city, nor any dumber than his jumping onto a moving train after it had accelerated up to about 40mph. If you watch that shot, you can see it's digitally altered because nobody could do it, much less a guy who was slowly bleeding to death from a head injury and a gunshot wound. But I hated the final shootout even if I can understand the way they made it work (chance tipping the scales so that chaos bested control). I hated it because we'd already had a shootout, in the law office. A way better ending to the film would have been where Max shot Vincent multiple times in the law office, rather than firing once and immediately turning his back. Rule #2: Double Tap! I hope after he survived that ordeal he took his new ladyfriend to see Zombieland.
8. This is an afterthought: if you're in a hurry to murder people, you'll likely have a few hours to kill while you wait for a jazz club to close. This is also the most efficient order to do things, to wait hours in a public place for a guy whose location is known, rather than to go after the other people first and then come back later for the guy who you know will be in a jazz club until after it is closed.
All in all I think it was an excellent movie, cleverly written and well acted in all parts.
Posted 17 Aug 2010Ok, I know there hasn't been a lot of activity here lately. On most boards I would go from that fact to the conclusion that it was no big deal that noone had posted a review of the JJ Abrams STAR TREK movie. Like, big deal, right? Noone posted a review of KNIGHT AND DAY either, so ... so what? Well, this what: I take it from the lack of gushing that you all felt just as disappointed, disheartened, disgusted and downright dissed as I felt when I saw that horrible horrible "film." You probably, many of you, hated it with an intense passion. This message isn't for you. Others among you walked out saying things like "well there was lots of action in it, they had character conflicts for a change, and that was cool, and well, most of the STAR TREK movies sucked anyway, so what's the big deal?"
Well I'll tell you.
1. Big budget movie, Used Car Salesman advertising. The marketing promised that this would not be "your father's STAR TREK," whatever that meant, and preview gushers promised that this was the film that would make Star Trek, finally, "cool." Ok. This is fucking insulting, so I walked in already annoyed. I will admit that before going into anything else: I walked into that movie expecting to hate it utterly. Many times in my life, particularly with STAR TREK IV, I have done this and have been pleasantly surprised. I am not stubborn when it comes to determining whether or not I like something. I can change and have changed my mind. So you should not take from my initial resistance any sort of predetermination. However I mention it in the interest of full disclosure: I expected to hate that movie from the way the filmmakers promised it would be nothing like the Star Trek tv series and series of films on which it was based. And the promise that early reviewers made, that the most successful franchise in the history of television would now suddenly and without any precedent become "cool." Classic Star Trek had been around for decades, had spawned multiple tv series, and had been endorsed by no less a public figure than Martin Luther King, Jr. Now the director of FELICITY promised to make it "cool." Oh I get it. You don't mean lasting cultural significance; you don't mean pop culture credibility; you mean tits and explosions. I'm gonna see tits and explosions, and maybe one or two characters talking all ironical and shit. Yipee. I was going to be watching TRANSFORMERS, but with characters named Kirk and Spock and Scotty and McCoy and Uhura and Sulu and Chekov. Those iconic characters shoehorned into a cookie-cutter bullshit action plot. I learned this from the MARKETING. From the shit that was supposed to make me WANT to watch the movie. This I took as a bad sign. This was the first Star Trek movie I didn't see on its opening weekend. I was in no big hurry.
2. Time travel fixes everything. All right. Everyone knew going in that they were "rebooting" the franchise. Everyone knew that we were going to see Kirk in his Academy days, and that the series of films was going to bear only a superficial resemblance to the original tv and movie series. We had already seen this sort of thing done a few times with the James Bond franchise, and by this point we'd already had about six different Batmen. So, no big deal: you make a movie with those characters; you give them those names; you put them on an adventure. Some errors will be made, such as having Chekov on the crew, when we all know he wasn't introduced until Season Two (this error was also made in WRATH OF KHAN, when Khan remembered him even though he hadn't been in the original tv episode. I guess he met him between scenes, like in the bar or something). But this is a reboot, and it doesn't need to match the original series' continuity. So ... these screenwriters made the biggest bonehead decision they could possibly have made. They decided that they wanted to do a reboot, to use the entire cast but in a different way, and yet still have it match continuity. They decided the way to do this was TIME TRAVEL. So Spock travels from the end of his life to a time when he was in his 20s, so that he can completely change everything and create a parallel universe where everything is exactly the same but different. Now instead of small errors in continuity popping up here and there and being forgiven by all but the most diligent nerd followers of the original tv show, instead the entire show is a giant continuity error, with the filmmakers visibly waving their hands in front of our faces while repeating the mantra "time travel fixes everything." Even though everything in these characters' lives is now completely different from before, they all end up in their exact same roles, on the exact same ship, only younger. A REBOOT could have just gone ahead and done this; this story, which has the burden of claiming to credibly fit into the continuity of the original series, is completely fucking ridiculous. It's like if you went back in time to when Hitler was in high school, and by changing a few details in his early life, he'd assume control of Germany a decade earlier, and he'd appoint exactly the same cabinet. Yes, I used a Hitler analogy; this annoyed me THAT much. I'm fine with these guys throwing continuity out the window; I liked it in CASINO ROYALE, and before it, GOLDENEYE. But you can't throw continuity out the window and then come up with a ridiculous scheme for claiming that you stayed true to continuity while doing it. That's madness.
Anyway, I'm not even sure this "parallel universe" idea works within the Star Trek idea of time travel. In "City on the Edge of Forever," did Kirk and Spock and Bones travel to an Alternate Earth past, in a parallel universe? So when they let Joan Collins die, have they just made this parallel universe identical to their own? When they return through the donut of time travel, are they meeting up with their original crew, or is this the crew of a parallel universe, one where everything is the same? That seems fishy; well hell, that episode was fishy anyway. So who cares about "City on the Edge of Forever." I just use it as an example of how Star Trek time travel doesn't seem to be about creating parallel universes. I think they just stuck time travel in here so they could claim they weren't restarting Star Trek, even though obviously they were.
3. The Villain Killed Kirk's Dad as Well as Spock's Mom. Seriously. So in the future, Eric Bana has a beef with Spock for not saving his planet from being destroyed. His motives for hatred are ambiguous, but whatever. Javert was a good villain in Les Miserables, and his raison d'etre was just as stupid as this guy's. I don't care about that. What bugs me is that somehow Spock's accident sends Eric Bana back in time 25 years more than it sends Spock. So Eric Bana immediately kills Kirk's dad and noone else, and then he sits and does NOTHING for 25 years. He never resupplies his ship. He never contacts any other planet. He never even tries to go to Romulus to warn them that their sun is going to go nova in about 70 years or so. He just sits there in space with his absolutely loyal crew for 25 years. 25 fucking years! This is a mining ship; why are these guys so god damned loyal to this guy? Why did he want to kill Kirk's dad? Why did he have nothing else to do while he waited for Spock, who apparently he knew was going to come through the wormhole eventually. Why did he know that Is this something that happens in the Star Trek universe, wormholes that destroy entire planets also sometimes send spaceships back in time 25 years apart. Ah, fuck it. 25 years later, he kills Spock's mom, so Kirk and Spock bond together despite their differences and then they get him. That's the plot of this movie: a spaceship carrying some kind of indestructible mining drill goes back in time about 70 years and another spaceship goes back only 45. The one that goes back 70 is used to kill the father of the 45-year traveler's best friend, but in the past. Then the past versions of the 45-year traveler and the son of the victim of the 70-year traveler bond over killing the bad 70-year traveler. That's the plot of this movie. Fuck my life; I can't believe I watched this thing.
4. Kirk has a boner for everyone. Ha ha. A running gag in Star Trek lore is that Kirk had sex with lots of alien women. Eddie Murphy did a bit on it; I think a lot of people did bits on it. So these guys, who admit they never watched Star Trek, take this to mean that Kirk is constantly on the prowl, at the danger of discipline. I can't state this too carefully: Kirk never made a play for a crew member. The original series was far more in tune with naval discipline that any of its franchises, so I understand if this detail was forgotten. While the writers of the various spin-offs had no trouble letting senior officers bone one another, this never happened in Star Trek. This is a minor point, and if they wanted to make "horny Kirk" a running gag in a better movie, it wouldn't have bothered me. But in this one it's just another galling indication that this is a movie made by guys who openly admitted and advertised that they never watched Star Trek, they didn't like Star Trek, and that their goal was "to make Star Trek cool." To make it cool by cracking jokes about weaknesses you believe may have been in the original. Oooooookay.
5. They have an Orion girl in it and she’s horny for Kirk. See above.
6. They have a guy in a red shirt die doing something stupid, for comic relief. Also, Sulu fences. See above.
7. There's a Tribble in it. See above.
8. Kobiyashi Maru. I'd like to just say "again, see above," but this deserves a small rant. The Kobiayshi Maru test, and Kirk's refusal to fail at it, was a significant story element in THE WRATH OF KHAN. Note I say it's a STORY element and not a PLOT element. The PLOT is just the stuff that happens and the order in which it happened. In terms of that, the test has almost no significance to WRTAH OF KHAN. But in terms of STORY, which is everything, from the stuff that happens to what it means to the characters, to character development and growth, etc, in terms of STORY, the Kobiayashi Maru test is the centre of WRATH OF KHAN. This one element ties together everything that is going on between all of the characters in the movie. In STAR TREK: THE PIECE OF SHIT "REBOOT," the Kobiayashi Maru test is written in as a silly sight gag, with Kirk chewing on an apple while he's playing at it. It has no importance other than to remind people that the filmmakers may have heard of other Star Trek movies, so they thought they should reference one. Like all of the Bond sight gags squeezed nto DIE ANOTHER DAY, this make the reboot movie worse. It did not enhance it. Adding the detail that the test was now written by Spock himself made it even more ridiculous. So Spock's a teacher at an officer training academy, one which gives command grade testing to ensign candidates, and in this timeline he meets Kirk when Kirk cheated on his test? Should I believe that in the original timeline they met in exactly the same way, but then Kirk went on to assume a Midshipman role on a ship, then later Ensign, and later Lieutenant Junior Grade, then Lieutenant Senior Grade, and later Lieutenant Commander, and Commander, and then Captain, serving on several different ships and under different Captains (as referenced in episodes of the original series), in a career parallel to Spock's, before they ended up serving on a ship with the exact same name as the one the two serve on in the reboot story? All of this is just stupid. Stupid like Han Solo being raised to the rank of General? Yes. It is exactly that stupid. I've gone a bit afield from the Kobiyashi Maru rant, though, so let me get back to it. Having that test in this movie served no purpose in terms of STORY. It was no more than a gag, like sticking Boba Fett into the rerelease of STAR WARS.
9. It's just a dumb revenge movie. Honestly, everyone who says "It had good action and stuff" is ignoring that the story is about a guy who gets mad at another guy for failing to save his planet, so when he goes BACK IN TIME, all he can think to do is to kill the guy who failed to save his planet. Not destroyed it; failed to save it. And he doesn't kill him in the past; he waits for him to come back in time, even though he has no reason to know he's ever going to. What if Spock's ship went FURTHER back in time, like a thousand years, and he's already dead? Never mind; Eric Bana's agent sent him a copy of the script, so he knew if he jus sat there and did nothing, eventually old Spock would show up and then he could get his revenge by destroying Vulcan and making him watch. This is what he waited 25 years to do, to destroy Vulcan and to make Spock watch. Oh, and then to destroy Earth. ????? Gotta do that. Wouldn't be an adventure movie where a little mining ship bypasses all of Vulcan's planetary defenses to satisfy a petty revenge kick that a villain had with a guy from that planet, if he didn't then inexplicably need also to destroy Earth! Gotta have him try to destroy Earth, or who would care? Yup, that's it. So Eric Bana's goal is to destroy Vulcan while Spock watches, and then to destroy Earth, even though he thinks Spock is exiled in a cave on a dead planet and will never know he's destroyed Earth. WHEN IN YOUR PLAN ARE YOU GOING TO SAVE ROMULUS? YOU FUCKING RETARD! Yeah, whatever.
10. The "plot" is just one dumb action scene after another. I'm trying to forget that the movie started with Kirk's dad being killed by the eventual villain of the film. So for me, the film opens with an adolescent Kirk driving a muscle car through Iowa while listening to the Beastie Boys. Jesus. I can’t imagine an adolescent kid TODAY listening to The Beastie Boys, but apparently there's a Jewish rap revival in the 23rd century. In the 23rd Century. Also, is there a canyon like that in Iowa? Should I care about this? Or should I just roll ahead to the bar fight? So in this alternate timeline, Kirk is a burnout, but Chris Pike sees potential and talks him into Officer training after seeing him get into a dumb bar fight with a bunch of guys who don't have the military discipline necessary to avoid bullying strangers in bars. Yeah whatever. Then Kirk goes to school and he sneaks on the Enterprise by taking a pill that makes his hands big. Then he's shuttled sown to a planet where he's chased by a giant monster in the snow, which he outruns despite it living on that planet and probably hunting things all the time, and him just panicking and falling down a lot. Then he meets Spock in a cave on a planet roughly the size of Earth. The he beams back onto the Enterprise and Scotty is trapped in the chocolate fountain from Willy Wonka because the last scene had too much talking but it's too early to bring the villain back. Then they have to skydive onto a giant drill and fight guys who apparently live in it, because I guess this drill is immune to missiles but it's not immune to guys jumping on it. But also even though they can beam onto ships moving faster than light they cant beam onto a stationary drill that's digging into the Earth after waltzing past all of Earth's planetary defenses and probably a fleet of spaceships. Then Kirk and some people beam onto Eric Bana's ship and fistfight a bunch of fiercely loyal abd probably schizophrenic loonies who have been cooped up together for 25 years with no sense of purpose, except to do whatever their captain says, and their captain wants to kill a guy that he stranded somewhere on another planet, so let's attack Earth now, cause he said so. Then they use the magic red stuff to make a new black hole and it either destroys Eric Bana or it sends him back in time, depending on what the next movie wants.
11. The next movie will have Khan in it.
12. Uhura offers Spock a blow job. Yup; that made its way into Star Trek.
13. People get appointed to senior officer ranks just because they happen to be standing next to ship's captain when something needs to get done. Ok, the future may be different, but in the original series, Star Fleet fairly closely resembled the US Navy. So, no. A Captain could really like someone, and he could recommend a promotion, but it would still need to go up the chain of command. In this movie, Pike promotes everyone to the rank they held ten years or so later in the universe we know. Apparently noone blinks, and Kirk assumes command of the Enterprise after only a couple of years of Officer school and about a week of active duty. Meanwhile Uhura becomes Senior Communications Officer because she knows a couple of words in an obscure language. And this is on a ship that has a computer that translates languages for you.
14. Kirk nicknames McCoy "Bones" based on something he says about his recent divorce. In the original series, it's clear that "Bones" is short for "sawbones," a slang term for a surgeon. So, the writers didn’t understand this, and noone involved with the production ever questioned them, so I have to contend with the idea that in a parallel universe Kirk come up with the exact same nickname for one of his closest friends, but for a completely different reason. I know, this is a small beef, but again it's evidence of the effort put into the writing of this movie. Tits and explosions people! Tits and explosions!
15. Leonard Nimoy is in it. I know I've complained enough already about how time travel was thrown in here to pretend that this movie is a part of the original Trek continuity, but I think it was also put in here just so they could have Leonard Nimoy in it. Ok, we have a new actor playing Spock, but we got Leonard Nimoy too! Isn't that awesome? Fanboy squee! Folks who didn't even like Star Trek but watched this anyway shrug! Fucking Christ.
That's enough for now.
Posted 22 Jan 2009I may be the last person to have seen this, but I thought it was kinda cute:
Posted 10 Nov 2008Hey I finally got around to watching this. Worst movie ever? Or at least, worst M Knight Shyamalan film, and with The Village and Lady in the Water behind him, that's something. What a load of dogshit. This one, impossibly even more than Lady in the Water, suffered from the fallacy that protagnists are more interesting to everyone than secondary characters. Everyone seemed so interested in Mark Wahlberg, from the lady that gives her cell phone to him in the middle of a call to her own daughter, to the strangers that pick him up and start asking about his personal business, to the teenager with such curiosity about his relationship and whether he'll have kids, to the crazy lady who is only there to reintroduce some tired horror tropes about crazy ladies who live alone. Oh yeah! And when they encounter the defensive guy behind the shutters that actually could not have protected against a gas attack, he shoots the two kids and leaves Wahlberg, Zooey and the girl alone, even though they don't run away. Add to that that the ending makes no sense; if this is what passes for environmentalist fiction then no wonder there isn't much of it.
This movie almost inspired me to watch it again and to blog everything that bugged me, but it wasn't even interesting enough for that. I am steering toward the theory that this guy is like the Andy Kaufman of filmmakers, consistently trying to see how much he can confuse and annoy people by turning out films that are incomprehensibly bad and barely watchable, one after the other.
- Member Title:
- Canada's Next Top Model.
- 48 years old
- November 17, 1968
- In Your Dreams
- I like stuff.