To be quite honest, while there were some awesome movies released in 2008, by and large I felt it was actually kind of a turd-fest year. You had such 'memorable' class acts such as M. Night Shamalamadingdong's 'return to form' in his much touted 'first R-rated film' with The Happening, to and absolute waste of Jonah Hill in Strange Wilderness. Not all was lost, though. 2008 saw not only a resurgence, but a complete revitalization of Robert Downey, JR with two runaway hits in Iron Man and Tropic Thunder (not to mention his great performance in Charlie Bartlett). 2008 was the year of Robert Downey, JR without a doubt.
So, just like Miles did with his recent update, I will be giving my year-end lists, from 'best of's', to 'oh my god I actually devoted time to this hunk of absolute shit'. Here we go.
Top Ten Biggest Examples of Cinematic Diarrhea in 2008:
As I mentioned previously, I felt this year wasn't exactly a strong one for cinema. Unfortunately, I have this love affair with movies. They have a hold on me. Even when I don't want too, they make me watch them. It's like Hollywood is an abusive spouse, and I'm a lonely girl from Montana with big dreams. They keep promising me the moon, and giving me the gutter.
10.) Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins:
(Fun little piece of trivia, my face mirrored the look of shock and disgust this screen shot also shares with the movie.)
I don't know what in God's name I was thinking. I want to believe in Martin Lawrence, I really do. It was so bad that I'm sure it could've been higher up on my list had I not blocked a great portion of it out of my head. Like a bad break-up, I spent weeks trying to drink this away and I think I may have actually succeeded. My only regret is that I had to relieve the momentary horror by recapping it here. Well...that, and having seen the movie.
9.) You Don't Mess With the Zohan:
How much longer can Adam Sandler continue his rain of shit? He hasn't had anything worth writing home about in so long, and it boggles my mind that his fan base continuously (and ravenously) supports his movies. I know he's capable of better, we all know that with such comedic classics as Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore.
I get it, though. He's a likable guy, he's genuinely funny and despite how you may feel about it, this is a guy that knows what his fan base wants and expects from him. Sure, he's thrown a few curve balls with some independent jaunts, but he still keeps true to what his fans want.
The problem is you can only have so many jokes about something like Hummus and a poor accent going for so long. What's that? Mariah Carrey was in this too? Fuck...thats a heavy decline from a Bob Barker cameo (The price is wrong, bitch. Strange how that applies.)
8.) How To Lose Friends and Alienate People:
Oh man, I feel so sorry for EVER lumping Simon Pegg into a category like this. The only thing that salves my burning conscience is the fact that he wasn't to blame whatsoever for this terrible movie. The two major problems of this movie didn't involve him whatsoever due to his genitalia and his nationality. I know that sounds creepy, so please let me elaborate:
As far as his genitalia being brought into the proverbial picture and it not being held accountable...a major problem with this movie was the casting of Kirsten Dunst. Every time I see her on screen I want to call the poor girl a dentist to fix those GOD AWFUL teeth. You were in the Spider Man series, for God's sake. I know you have money, bitch. Please get them fixed and stop offending me.
The other reason is Pegg's nationality. Yes, it actually saved him. I'll explain:
American's don't know how to use Simon Pegg. He's at his best when he's scheming with his British-y cohorts Nick Frost and Edgar Wright. American film makers by and large (as well as that particular audience) don't understand the magic of subtlety, especially when it comes to comedy. They have to be led by the hand to the punch line, and then beaten over the head with it, much like a mallet in those old cartoons. American film makers do not know how to use Pegg, because the vast majority of the audiences don't get half the reasons why Spaced was such a great show and must never be reproduced like original Office.
7.) Be Kind Rewind:
I like Mos Def, I really like Danny Glover, Michel Gondry is cool and I want to like Jack Black. The idea for this film was pretty unique, I think. It just didn't translate well, and in the end it was just...boring. It was such a shame to see this kind of a goose-egg come out of these actors and director with so much talent and promise. I feel like Jack Black hasn't found where he really fits at in movies, which is sad to see, but I know one day he will find his stride.
(I too have hoop dreams, coach.)
I like Will Ferrell. There aren't many people that don't. I also really, really like a lot of the supporting cast in this. Hell, I even love Andre 3000 and wish Outkast were still making music, because rap-hip hop, at least the modern version of it, is almost completely unlistenable.
Will Ferrell for some reason loves to make schticky sports themed comedies. Talladega Nights, that skating one...there was probably another in there somewhere but I just don't care to rehash it right now, and I really wish he'd just fucking stop. He's capable of making some of the best characters come to life. And the mad genius about him is that some of these characters are so far-fetched, I truly believe there isn't another actor out there that could make me believe it besides him. Take Step Brothers for example. What he and John C. Reilly did there was basically poetry, in a way.
But Semi-Pro is just abysmal. The writing was poor, it was entirely too predictable, and this is a role we've seen a thousand times from Ferrell. I honestly do fear he's gonna get type cast in this mediocre-to-poor type of role one day, and that could be the death knell for American Comedies. If you don't think he's not a major part of the reason why rated-R comedies are making a comeback these days, then you're absolutely fucking wrong.
After seeing this movie, I 'wanted' (see what I did there?) to gouge myself in the testicles with something rusty. Why? Because at one time I think Angelina Jolie might've been really beautiful, but now that she's adopted 10,000 Ethiopian children and apparently wants them to feel more at home so she's taken to starving herself, and now she's become the epitome of boner-killing. If boner killing were a category of the Razzies (which I fully content that that category should be created now because of what old Skeletor has become) then she'd win not only the inaugural award, but lifetime achievement for it in the same trip to the podium.
Did Morgan Freeman sign a contract drunkenly right after the wrap up party for Driving Miss Daisy, and that contract stated that he had to be in every single movie thats been released from then on out, despite how good or bad it may be? He can't be enjoying these roles whatsoever. But God help me, every time that man is on screen my heart flutters. He could shine a turd into a diamond if he were given enough time. Unfortunately that whiny little bitch James McAvoy sits on screen too long, acting from his vagina and having it bleed everywhere the entire time. "Oh, I'm not sure if I can curve a bullet, everyones being mean to me, I'm going to pout and cry."
"Oh, but it was like the Matrix..." Fuck off. The first Matrix was (at best) alright, and everything after that was worse than watching someone you love set your pets on fire.
I want to marry Elizabeth Banks. It's unfortunate that she's worked with Judd Apatow in the past (he's been known to give up and comers the advice of "Just saying no. Come into this business saying no), but still seems to take every role she can. But I understand, and am grateful because watching her in any capacity makes my entire week better. However, W. is such a processed, manufactured piece of absolute wretched filth and shit that I hope to God Oliver Stone (who put out Platoon, one of the greatest movies of all time) should never be allowed to even watch TV again.
Politically speaking, I find this film over overwhelmingly insulting. The timing of it, the "it's funny cause he's a joke" pandering that so much of Hollywood (and the media) is known to do. It's demeaning, and I'm glad this movie barely recouped what it cost to make it in the first place.
Somewhere along the line Stone lost the ability to have an original thought, and instead opted to only make topical movies about tragedies and disaster not even a decade old yet. I understand that some of these topic should be made into movies because forgetting about them is absolutely atrocious on so many levels, but with him making the movie about the World Trade Center (movie of the same name) was nothing short of exploitation and taking advantage of a wound not even six years old (at the time the movie was released).
The problem I have with this movie is why did he wait until Election Day to release it? What the fuck is the point of having a message like that? It's akin to that of the Titanic's SOS calls being answered after it was already rusting on the ocean floor and Jack was already digesting in sharks bellies. It's cowardice, its spineless and its pandering in its highest form.
How long until Stone pitches the idea for Katrina: Waves of Doom? Prick.
The film itself can be somewhat fair, which I suppose is nice. But it still reeks of the hypocritical nature of not only the film maker, but the audience it's intended for. "Look, he talks funny. Hyuck, hyuck, a-hyuck! He mispronounced nuclear! What a tool!" Yeah...except that guy has access to the button, and no one tried to impeach him.
3.) The Happening:
M Night Shamalamadingdong (referenced and linked above, and yes I refuse to acknowledge his birth name, as anyone who could continuously churn out crap like this can't possibly have a soul. At least not a human one) should be thrown into Guantanamo Bay and be forced to work off every cent he's made off a movie since right Signs. And even that movie was pure projectile vomit for half of it, so he should have to work off that as well. And he should be forced at gun-point. If he stops too long to wipe the sweat off his brow, they should shoot him dead.
Trees. TREES, are you fucking kidding me? Thats the big twist, wind and trees? In the real world it would have taken me three seconds to figure out what was 'happening' (I did it again), and I'd put on a gas mask, let a few more idiots die and then go to town on those trees with a chain saw. Are you fucking kidding me? I still can't believe it was trees. Trees are about as scary as fucking marshmallows. They only time they cause real danger is if a kid falls off one, or one falls off you. But I live in Arizona. We don't have fucking trees here, so maybe I'm missing something.
See in Arizona, we have things called 'Cactus'. I'm sure you might've heard of them. What a lot of people who don't know what a real desert looks like might not know is that one of the cacti's cousins is called a "jumping cactus". Broken down simply, it shoots it's needles at you. It's natures pipe bomb, and it fucking hurts. Make a movie about that, Shamalamskateran. It's a whole hell of a lot more believable. If someone dies because they are allergic to trees or something, that gets a somewhat pass, but if you kill yourself because of it's pollen....good. I'm glad that happened.
A tree?! Really?! The thing we hang tire swings and build clubhouses in?
2.) Strange Wilderness:
I only have myself to blame for this. I should have known, I really should of. But I mean...it has Jonah Hill in it! It has Kevin Heffernan! It should have been, on paper, so much more. But as things like this go, it was bad, bad, bad. God damn, it still stings.
I suppose it's my fault thought. I assumed comedies were supposed to be fun, but you know what they say about assuming...
1.) Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of Crystal Skulls:
I've never in my wildest nightmares, even for a moment, would have expected myself to hate anything Indiana Jones related. I honestly had no idea.
I not only hated it, I almost walked out of the theater right after his miraculous survival technique of hiding in a refrigerator while a nuke was dropped.
Aliens. Aliens do not belong in fucking Indiana god damned Jones, and I don't give a fuck what George Lucas or Steven Spielberg thinks. You want aliens, fuck-twats? Go remake ET. I won't watch that one, either.
This is one of the biggest atrocities to ever happen, but the biggest downside is the inevitable turn that its going to take for the worse. Because this movie made so much money, LucasFilm will assume that it's alright to continue sharting on this beloved classic, just like he did with Star Wars. And I'm the biggest asshole here, because when Indiana Jones and the Fortress of Killing My Childhood Memories comes out in the next few years, I'll be there front and center weeping into my popcorn and thumbing a revolver.
Shia LaBeouf has no business in this movie. I don't hate him necessarily, but I have no idea what he did or who he has naked pictures of in compromising positions that enables him to be in so many of these big movies. It seems like just a few years ago he was Lindsay Lohan's bitch on Disney, but somehow he's here riding a motorcycle and making Indy somehow sit bitch. I don't understand it, I don't like it, and I feel like Lucas and Spielberg should be hung for allowing this idea to get off the ground. I wish when I hit puberty I got a sense of entitlement I didn't deserve, and it allowed me to be in big blockbusters, no matter how shitty.
When you come into a movie with low expectations, but still do it with a smile because the franchise was so amazing, and you still have your heart dashed to bits...thats just some kind of all time low.
To read what my initial reaction was to this movie, I highly suggest clicking this link. I'm not one to do movie reviews, but under the guise of an open letter, I aired my broken heart and anguish.
I can't even write about how badly fuck this movie anymore. It literally pains me too much to do so. This should have never been made, and I have no idea why Lucas continues to fucking shit on his own legacy. Would some one please tell him to stop? It's gotten to the point where I didn't even watch the Clone Wars. No one did, and to be honest...it's the only piece of the Star Wars puzzle I haven't bought into in some shape or form.
Thats all I have for now. I need to grab a shower to wash the dirty off of me. I feel like a prostitute who got 'stiffed' (I keep doing it) out of her money. Kind of like if her vagina was a Taxi, and as soon as the guy got where he was going he ran out without paying. Thats exactly how I feel right now.
Come back tomorrow night when I have my best of list for movies, and maybe if I feel up to the task my favorite albums of 2008.
Until then, I'll see ya in the lobby.