Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Trailer Trashed Pt 2

The movie theater has always been a main fixture of my life, an anchor, if you will. By the time I had my own car (yes, Dad, you paid for it, please don't interrupt again) it wasn't unheard of for me to go to the theater once a week or more. Every year since I turned 18 I took my brothers to see a movie on Christmas Eve, and once saw the late showing of Valkyrie on Christmas night (because nothing says holiday cheer like watching Nazis shoot at Tom Cruise disguised as a pirate). In senior year of high school, I got a job at a nearby Harkins, abused the "free movie privileges", and immediately quit after I learned all the blind spots in their security system. My friends and I didn't pay admission for almost a year.

At one point there were 4 theaters within a 5-10 minute driving distance from my house, though in my last year in Phoenix I had shirked them all in favor of drive-thrus and independent cinemas, having developed an attack of the conscience from supporting businesses who openly supported anti-LGBT causes (Harkins Theatres was one of many southwestern theater chains that refused to show Brokeback Mountain, and once while working for them I was told to ask a gay couple to cease kissing or risk being ejected...hell is waiting for me with open arms).

After moving out to the Bay, my trips to the theater have decreased significantly, for two reasons: 1) I'm so poor I can't afford a decent haircut, and 2) there just aren't as many of them. Today we drove half an hour to see The Men Who Stare At Goats. The only independent theater I've seen/heard of/been to is The Roxie, where I saw Dod Sno and laughed hysterically the whole way through (but then tearfully cringed at the amputation scene...that's like the one thing I can't stand seeing depicted...which is disturbing when you consider I've sat through documentaries about people who like to be fucked by horses).

Consequently, my Netflix use has sky-fucking-rocketed. I wonder if this will eventually replace my habit of going to the theater, if my employment issue doesn't improve or if I just don't find a warm, local theater not run by a hate group (btw, still haven't found Jesus) that I like.

On the plus side, I've relied entirely on youtube to provide me with movie trailers, which is becoming an increasingly beneficial arrangement, since I'm batting about .100 (that's 1 base hit for every ten pitches, golf fans) with good, view-worthy trailers at the few showings I am going.

Whatever, enough with my life story. Let's get trashed.

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time

• After viewing this, I had a vision of the future. In it, all my friends were giving me looks of something like but not necessarily in-credulousness and asking me how I could possibly naysay the casting of Jake Gyllenhaal as the prince when I have been so eager to defend Seth Rogen being cast as The Green Hornet. Unfortunately, the vision ends before I can see my future self, but knowing her, she will probably pull out a globe, point to where Persia used to be, then point to where Jake Gyllenhaal was born, and then make some crass, dismissive comment about how it doesn't matter because she probably won't even see the movie for fear that Jerry Bruckheimer will donate her admission fee to Sarah Palin's 2012 presidential campaign. Dude, I don't want to talk smack behind her back, and don't tell her I said this, but she needs to get over her politics, man, and just learn to love people in spite of differences.

• I'm glad to see Ben Kingsley relying on his main talent: looking sinisterly into the camera and speaking in elegant villainese.

• Will this become a franchise? Let's go through the list Protagonist who's likeness can be found on the wallpaper teenagers' laptops? Check. Homely love interest with competing bad accent? Check. Bearded villain who will return in the sequel no matter how many times you kill him? Check. Porno ripoff? Must investigate further. Brown chicken brown cow.

• Jake Gyllenhaal just made a joke about "hiding it up his ass". I. Will. Not. Make. Joke. About. Previous. Work.

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

• So if Heath Ledger's alternate selves all have beards, how do we tell which ones are evil?

• Normally I frown on trailers that reveal the entirety of the film's plot, but honestly, Gilliam is not known for his complex, twisting plots. His strength is in his vision and aesthetic, as is evident to anyone who actually sat through The Brothers Grimm in its entirety.

• Whenever I see a trailer for the first time, I instinctively think of each actor in their wackiest, most horrible movie roles to see if that will somewhat hinder my interest in seeing it. Surprisingly, the only person in this film immune to my flashback is Verne Troyer, who's goofiest role, that of Surreal Life's Verne Troyer, really isn't all that wacky (unless you're an ableist).

Sherlock Holmes

• This trailer is so well executed, so brilliantly visualized and thoroughly fleshed out, it's almost enough to stir in me feelings of remorse for my disinterest in Robert Downey Jr ever since he got clean and converted to conservatism, but (thankfully) Girl Genius and reruns of House have burned me out on steampunk and scrubs who don't shave abusing their ever-loyal companions, so I have been cured of the urge to see this on opening night. I might be swayed to see the film if I cold be assured Downey Jr gets punched a few more times in the face by various characters.

• I did not detect a single syllable of cockney. Where is the real Guy Ritchie and what religion are they trying to convert him to?

• Grudgingly I will concede that this is possibly the finest and most accurate portrayal of the detective, perhaps even more so than the original illustrations. I always pictured Holmes as a strung out eccentric one indecent exposure away from ye olde prison or eating crumbs on the streets of London, because someone as erratic and punchy as Sherlock would have probably ended up.

• I find it really ironic that the teaser posters for this film (at least the ones that feature Watson) say "Crime Will Pay!" I can't tell if this is an ironic twist on the old saying "crime doesn't pay", as Sherlock is a sociopathic junkie who's detective methods can be boiled down to "if science fails, punch it in the neck", or if Warner Bros can't afford to pay anybody to read the god damn books. Why yes, I do have trouble breathing the air up here on my high horse.

• The speed with which people have slapped the "bromance" label on this film would have made Wally West nauseous. I'm not convinced that this isn't some sort of "guerilla marketing" technique by Warner Bros themselves. Sweaty half-naked men engaging in "Victorian Fight Club"-esque fisticuffs. Jokes from the limey female lead (can you have a female lead in a "bromance"?) inferring a homoerotic relationship. A well-groomed Jude Law. This film couldn't be any gayer if it featured a cameo by Rip Taylor as Oscar Wilde.

• I can already tell this will be a franchise.

• On a positive note, I love Jude Law. Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow is one of my all-time favorite movies, and if I were straight, I would totally get over my hang ups with romantic comedies and watch The Holiday or Closer and make googly eyes whenever he kisses [insert female lead]. I hope that his recent choice in projects means that we will see him in more action/sci-fi/horror films. That said, I am not buying that mustache. At all. AT ALL.

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