Thursday, November 13, 2008


Making fun of terrible movies is like shooting fish in a barrel: it's easy, fun and there are lots of barrels of fish to kill. But, when you remove sci-fi and fantasy from the equation of flops and bombs, it gets a little tougher. When you add the horror genre, it's slim pickings. Just then you remember all the movies you saw as a kid--about sports, war and comedies with Ernest. Wait, Ernest was and is somewhat cool. Here is a short list of those bad non-sci fi, non-horror movies.

Ground Rules:

a) movie cannot be hinged upon science fiction/futuristic/horror concepts
b) movie must be released in 1980 or later
c) movie must have some star power and a decent budget

Rocky V
This one is pretty easy to berate, so I will get it out of the way. Firstly, this film should not have been made. A book or a TV miniseries would have been better for god's sake. Basically, the story is about the downfall of Rocky's career and family (which I never wanted to see), only to have new life shot into Balboa's life by Tommy "the Machine" Gunn (get it?). I bet you can guess the rest of the story. Although it is riddled with flashback scenes from the previous sequels, not once does Rocky put on boxing gloves. Even worse, Stallone himself later said that this film deserves a 0 out of 10.
Bottom line: No film franchise is immune to the sequel kiss-of-death.

Hamburger Hill
War films can be terrific. Sometimes, they are just rip-offs of a movie that came out less than a year before. Now I know that Hamburger Hill is a "true story", but I can't get past Courtney B. Vance's fake glasses (there are tons of films that use fake plastic lenses instead of real prescriptions, but those horn-rimmed frames make the reflection worse!) This movie is an absolute cliche-fest. Mad black people, new recruits "learning the hard way", sobbing platoon leaders. And historically, this picture boils down to two things: cashing in on the Vietnam craze, and have some developing talents act (yell) with each other. Thank god Nicolas Cage wasn't in it...
Bottom line: There are only a few classic war movies post-1979.


Oh, but I spoke too soon. WWII isn't safe from the (plasticized) face of The Cage. There are lots of untold stories in wartime, and Hollywood decided the Navajo needed a nod. Unfortunately, this movie slaps the Native Americans in the face because it focuses on Cage's character most of the time. I feel sorry for the people that saw this in the theaters, expecting a war drama and then watching Cage's character apeshit and samurai-style on hundreds of dimwitted Japanese soldiers.
Bottom line: There are only a few classic war movies post-1979.

I had no idea what the amateur boxing match was about at the beginning until I read the Wikipedia synopsis. What is the point of this movie? Even Vince Vaughn (let alone P. Diddy) can save this soporific script. What am I supposed to do with this? Is this a buddy movie? Is this a road trip movie?
Bottom line: Don't ever try to be a quasi-sequel to Swingers.

Drillbit Taylor
The story goes something like this: a hobo (the cool-in-real-life Owen Wilson) is hired to beat up some super-bullies for some geeks. It's a real drag. Unfortunately, Wilson has no Vince Vaughn-esque sidekick to feed off, and therefore this comedy becomes one of those weird romantic, be-yourself yawn fests that you see in the bargain bin.
Bottom line: Owen Wilson without a sidekick is like Jesus without disciples--no buddies to hang out with.

Never Say Never Again
Bond films may be sci-fi, but most people ignore that fact, so I will too. Amazingly, 1983's Never Say Never Again is a remake of Thunderball (and it came out the same year as Roger Moore's Octopussy). Like Thunderball, it featured a (now aging) Sean Connery, whose former Bond film was 1971's Diamonds Are Forever. So what the hell... why did he come back? Personally, I don't want to see 007 with Great Looking Gray in his hair. Kim Basinger and a semi-video game are also featured, but neither the woman or the medium would reach their prime until 1989.

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1 comment:

  1. Internal contradictions in Na'Vi: XBOCT called teammates idiots

    In DOTA2 The International 2013 Grand Finals, Na’Vi lost to Alliance with 2:3 and ranked second. After the match, members of Na’Vi congratulated their Swedish rival. However, the position one player Alexander 'XBOCT' Dashkevich criticized his teammates for the loss on Twitter and claimed that Na’Vi would not continue with the current roster.

    XBOCT tweets:

    “It is unfortunate that your fate lies on a couple of useless idiots. Thanks for all the support but I don't think Na`Vi will continue with the current roster.”

    The phrase “a couple of useless idiots” provokes reflective thoughts among players. Which two teammates on earth does XBOCT intend to criticize? Many players speculate that it is mostly due to KuroKy calling the "gg" without his team's consent in game one of the grand final though this is unconfirmed.


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