* Saved from my own dumb-ass move!: I headed out to my car this afternoon and found -- oh, shoot -- I hadn't closed the door completely the last time I'd driven it. The door was locked, but not flush with the car body. I grumbled to myself, stuck in the key to see (hoping against hope) if I still have juice in the battery...and I did, because (and this isn't normal) at some point I'd set the overhead light to Always Off No Matter What position. So no drain on my battery! I could drive! *goes "phew" and wipes sweat from brow*
* Eclectic purchasings today: the first issue of the Dark Tower comic series, more of Caitlin's run on The Dreaming, Krispy Kreme (I wanted a treat), more minutes on my long-distance phone card, and one bizarre-double-feature of a DVD double-up: the extras-packed edition of The Iron Giant and the extended, even-more-disturbing version of Natural Born Killers.
* Sighted at the 82nd and Foster Fred Meyer: a guy who could've been Silent Bob and Banky Edwards morphed togther into one dude. Askewniverse represennnnnnnt!
* (With thanks to curt_holman for the link): an absolutely insane review of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. "Insane" as in "by Neill Cumpston," who interrupts his own review to summarize his idea for The Greatest Movie Ever. The formatting is all wonky on the review page, so here's the text ...
HOBBIT-MAN: THE KING RETURNS
Whenever cool movie series get to the third movie they suck dicks like they’re trying to become Emperor of Dicksuck-ylvania. George Lucas had Star Wars, and then Empire Kicks Ass, and then all of a sudden it’s Planet of Furry Faggoty Fuckheads. Then he had to make two more to feed the Suck Demon that was holding his children hostage, and those movies went beyond gay to where they’re paying old people to take a dump on them.
Even this summer, with MATRIX: SUDDENLY GAY and TERMINATOR: I LOVE COCK, the Rule of the Suck-y Third Movie got re-proven. If the third X-Men movie had come out this summer it probably would have been some crippled crock of crap where Wheelchair Charlie traps Fuck Yeah Wolverine in an illusion mind-trap where Wolverine thinks he’s a time traveler from a hundred years ago romancing Meg Ryan in right-now New York. Of course, the X-Men movie would try to redeem itself in the third act by having Wolverine realize it’s a mind-illusion and cut Meg’s head off and play dodgeball with it, but it would be too late and here comes my extra large Sprite at the screen.
But guess what? One movie series turned that rule on its head. One 3-movie series said, “Wait a minute, we’re going to make the 3rd movie SO tits it will make the FIRST two movies look gay.”
I just saw HOBBIT-MAN: THE KING RETURNS and that’s the movie I was talking about in the last paragraph. This movie will make you forget that if you stick a knife in your belly you’ll bleed to death so do not bring a knife to this movie.
It’s also, thank fucking God, LOUD. Even if you bring an iPod so you can listen to VH during the Elf parts you’ll take it off because I swear to fucking Roth you do NOT know where the next big bang is going to come from, or when something big is going to crunch someone’s skull while you picture that person getting their skull crushed is really your neighbor upstairs that plays Dido all day or that dude at the Starbucks who’s always reading and looking all smart.
Oh yeah, the movie is also 3 hours and 20 minutes, and I think it’s almost four hours if you sit through all the credits (it was all pencil sketches of the characters, which I think means they ran out of money). So if you bring some chick who’s all like, “I have a spinning class tomorrow” or “I’m thirsty” tell her to go home and watch Gay Dudes and the Straight Guy because this movie takes fucking commitment. I saw the one dude in front of me who was with this girl, and the President of Warner Brothers came out and said, “This movie is three hours and twenty minutes,” and before I could say, “So what, gaylord” the chick says to the dude she’s with that she has to GO. And he LET her go because this movie kicks so much ass you can SENSE it even before it starts. And this chick was a stone fox, and he probably could have made out with her, but he was like, “I’m going make out with this movie,” that’s how good it is. See ya, hottie.
This movie starts with the origin of Golem – that creepy guy who looks like Iggy Pop and wears Tarzan pants and wants the invisible-ring. He’s still on a quest with the two hobbits - Rudy from the film RUDY and Fredo - to throw the ring into a volcano (this is like a serious version of JOE VERSUS THE VOLCANO). The ring is also evil but you keep thinking, while you watch it, that someone should put it on and check out some boobs. I have a feeling those scenes will be in the DVDs.
At the same time, the two other midget-men and the giant hippies have seriously fucked up that one evil guy’s tower (he was Count Duke in Star Wars: Every Cock in the Universe Up My Ass Part II), and they hook back up with Magneto, and also that chick with the bow and arrows and finally the Giant Midget with the Axe. Oh, and also that I Don’t Want to be the King/I Am Destined to Be the King Dude is with them, and he has this whole other story where he pretty much decides to be the King because, I mean, pussy for miles. This is where I started getting really confused, though, because they start talking about kingdoms and alliances and there’s a lot of lines like, “Rohan shall ride!” and “Gondor still stands!” and “Flabadan Son of Rectum must wear the mantle of Bloggith!” and also there’s some shit with the elves that’s like being in a fucking candle store for twenty minutes.
But the movie is only doing this to set up the BATTLE OF SHIT-YOUR-PANTS, which isn’t the actual name of the battle but SHOULD be because you will shit stuff you did not eat when you see it.
It all has to do with the fact that one of the midget-men takes this orb from the bad guy and he looks into it and sees the glowing eye’s plan (or part of it – something about a tree dying and Enya music playing). So he and Magneto go to this huge white city where the king is being a dick and just eating dinner while every puke-ugly bad-ass on the planet starts surrounding it, ready to open a Wal-Mart that only sells ball-stomp. There’s this one medium-sized battle in a city that is like the last line of defense for the Big-Ass White City and it’s pretty cool, with a lot of head-crunching and these huge flying bat demon things that I swear to God grab horses and the dudes riding them and fuck them up from the floor up. They’re really loud, too, and a lot of chicks and older people were covering their ears.
Meanwhile, Rudy and Fredo and Golem are getting closer to the volcano, and Golem makes Fredo hate Rudy, and then tricks Fredo into a cave where there’s a giant spider and FUCK that was really scary because even in real life giant spiders are bad news.
Someone told me that all of the spider stuff actually happens in the second book in the series, and that they had to tweak some of the stuff that happens in the books to make the movies work. You know what' Good. Books suck. They used to be good back when people didn’t have movies and TV and dressed like Davey Crockett. People also used to ride horses and drink tea, but now we have cars and Sprite. Move the fuck on. Peter Jackson did an amazing job adapting these books, and now the movies are so kick-ass that some people are going to go back and READ the books, which wouldn’t have happened if he’d just filmed the books exactly as they are. Happy now, smarty?
Let me give you an example of how NOT to make books into movies:
This summer a huge bucket of farts came out called LEAGUE OF ADVENTURE GENTLEMEN. It was about how a bunch of characters from old-timey books got together and fucked up bad guys. And NO ONE SAW IT. Why?
First, they picked a bunch of characters like Invisible Man and Mr. Hyde and Dracula-Woman and Huck Finn. These are all characters from books that were written five hundred years ago. Huck Finn was actually written before writing. These are the kind of books they make you read in summer school but you’re all like, “Fuck you, I’m going to play Sonic on my Sega” and you totally complete all the levels by August. So who the fuck is going to go see a movie about characters and people they’ve never heard of (the movie acts like you’re supposed to know who these people are)' Like I said before, MOVIES are the new books, so how about this for a movie (I even thought of a good title):
TEAM 1970’S FOOT-TO-ASSERS
The movie opens: A cult killer tries to assassinate Chauncey Gardiner, the President of the United States. Before the brainwashed assassin dies he gasps the word, “Cyrus” and takes a poison pill.
Senator John “Bluto” Blutarsky forms a super-team to infiltrate New York and take down the “Cyrus” cult. This team is made up of “Bruce” (from ENTER THE DRAGON), “Dirty” Harry Callahan, a now-teenaged Regan MacNeill (who is a stone boner machine and also has devil powers), “Quint” from JAWS, who’s upper torso washed ashore after the shark attacked him, and who has now been made bionic by Oscar Goldman and OSI, and finally Beau “The Bandit” Durville, who’s driving his Trans Am.
They enter New York with the Bandit driving like a fucking maniac, and Dirty Harry shooting people out the window and Regan making people’s heads explode and shit. Wow!
They get to the center of the Cyrus Cult headquarters in the middle of Central Park and confront Cyrus. He’s controlling his subjects with a glowing Chevy Malibu. Bruce goes totally Jackie Chan on everyone while Harry and the Bandit battle their way to the car. Quint dies bringing down all the cult killers, and they drive off with the Malibu. They also find out that Cyrus was trained by the Parallax Corporation.
Back at the White House, they get their next assignment. They must take down the Parallax Corporation, which is being run by Gregory Marmalarde. They are creating an Army of brainwashed super-killers at their facility at Crystal Lake. These new killers are indestructible and a step above the cult killers of Cyrus. For this phase of the mission they are joined by CIA agent Vincent J. Ricardo (from THE IN-LAWS) and off they go.
They blast their way into Parallax Headquarters, only to find their way blocked by the new generation of super-killers – hockey-mask wearing motherfuckers who have all undergone the “Vorhees treatment”. Bruce and Regan take on the killers, while Harry and Vincent go for Marmalarde. That’s when he reveals his newest, greatest killer – New York taxi driver Travis Bickle, who’s undergone the “Vorhees treatment” and is a virtual arsenal of different guns, knives – all of which appear from his wrists, chest, even eyes. Bickle killed Marmalarde’s frat brother Douglas Neidermeyer in Vietnam. Harry dies fighting Bickle, but not before killing Marmalarde. Ricardo searches the Parallax files, only to find that Parallax is only a tiny part of a much bigger, much more evil power – the Thorne Corporation, run by Damien Thorne. He has a huge facility in the Nevada desert, near Area 51.
Their final mission is to deliver the Chevy Malibu to Area 51. The Chevy contains a weapon which can defeat Thorne’s final plan.
Thorne’s compound is patrolled and protected by driverless trucks from DUEL and a bunch of those devil limousines from THE CAR. Two teams are sent in – The Bandit, driving his Trans Am with Regan and Bruce, and another driver named “Kowalski”, who will drive the Malibu along with Ricardo.
They battle their way through the devil trucks and demon limos until they penetrate Thorne’s headquarters. He’s got every character from every boring-ass indie film in the last twenty years strapped to posts in this huge chamber full of leather-y ALIEN eggs. The eggs are hatching and putting face huggers on the douche bags from WALKING AND TALKING and SEX, LIES AND VIDEOTAPES and CHASING AMY and everyone from every Henry Jaglom film ever made and killing them.
There’s nothing anyone can do – they have to stand and watch while all of these characters are slowly and horrible killed before our eyes, and they hatch into Aliens. That’s when “Kowalski” opens the trunk of the Malibu to reveal: ROY NEARY, JR. This is the half-human/half-alien offspring of Roy Neary from CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND and he starts going outer space whup-ass on the aliens along with Bruce Lee. The Bandit looks at the camera, winks, and smiles. (There can be a lot of shots during the closing credits of The Bandit cracking up).
Ricardo and Regan work their way to Thorne’s headquarters where there’s this huge demon battle between Regan MacNeill and Damien Thorne that will make the audience go, “We need new words for ‘HOLY FUCKING SHIT’”.
See? Use characters from movies thirty years ago, instead of from books five hundred years ago. And by the way, that’s only using characters from 70’s films. I also have plans for an 80’s team of ass-kickers and a 90’s team. Everyone who was into movies from before 1969 is dead, and we’d actually better hurry with the 70’s thing, now that I think of it. Also, I totally copy-wrote this with the Writer’s Society, and I also know a 400 pound man who will man-rape anyone who makes this movie without me.
Okay, back to HOBBIT-MAN, although at this point it’s just wall-to-wall awesome. The Battle for the White Mountain City has trolls and elephants and catapults and a battering ram that looks like a dragon head on fire. Also, earlier Gandalf scares off the flying bats-things with his glowing staff. In the battle for the White Mountain City Gandalf just runs around giving orders. How about turning the bad guys into babies or something with his staff? But that would actually cut down on the ass-kicking so, actually, fine.
The I Don’t Want to Be The King Guy gets a bunch of ghost warriors to fight, and that’s just awesome when it happens, and also the elf chick with the bow takes down an elephant all by herself, and the Giant Midget keeps killing people with his axe.
Then when THAT battle’s over and you’re thinking, “Just air comes out when I spooge now” they stage a whole OTHER battle at Evil Town to distract the orks so Golem and Rudy and Fredo can get to the volcano. And I won’t reveal what happens in the volcano except to say it involves Fredo and Rudy getting right to the very edge, but at the last second Fredo turns evil and decides not to throw the ring in, and puts it on instead so he turns invisible, buy Iggy shows up and bites off Fredo’s finger and Iggy falls with the ring into the lava and Evil Town is completely destroyed. You will have to find out the rest for yourselves. I hate spoilers.
You can totally leave at this point but there’s an extra half hour of everyone relaxing and going home and being happy and I guess they put that in so you can realize your pants are choked with poop from all the battle scenes, so thanks.
There’s also an Annie Lennox song over the closing credits. How about Led Zeppelin’s “Ramble On”, which is where they got the name Golem, or “Ain’t Talking ‘Bout Love” by Van Halen?
Peter Jackson has proved with these films that he is the man to bring A-TEAM to the screen. Five stars. Best movie of the next four years.