Thursday, June 28, 2012

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

That's My Boy Or: An Open Letter To Adam Sandler


Dear Adam,

We've had some great times, you and I. I'll never forget the first time we met - you were a wedding singer with a cool 80's style mullet trying to woo the girl of your dreams. I've never laughed that hard at 80's puns, your man-child personality, topped off with a inner sweetness that made the first time watching your comedic performance a charm. Then came your turn as a complete and utter man-child with deep anger issues who gets the chance to be the defensive star on an NCAA football team that had me at "hello": a waterboy-turned college athlete who can kick all kinds of ass? "Water sucks; it really, really sucks?" Hell, it was all brilliant and hilarious! I even liked that one friend who's a major douchebag  and never really came out from under your shadow. You know, the one who was a male gigalo? Anyway, that was an awesome role, and you not only earned a fan, but an admirer of your work. From Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore (your earliest stuff), to Big Daddy and Mr. Deeds (yes, my devotion to your movies went to me defending your performance in the TV show-turned remake for the big screen).

But somewhere, in the middle of it all, we began to grow apart.

You see, it was 2002, and you were at an all-time high, and that admiration turned into full-blown astonishment in Paul Thomas Anderson's Punch Drunk Love, a romantic comedy lost in the shuffle with Eternal Sunshine, (500) Days of Summer, and Once as one of the best rom-coms of the last 10 years. You were playing the same man-child, but here, your anger wasn't used for comedic effect: it was to convey just how deep that anger resides in yourself, and how you could snap at any moment. It was a little scary, but if also showed just how fragile and scared your character was, and how much he was willing to fight to be with the woman you loved. The peculiar nature of your and Emily Watson was charming and deeply heartfelt and full of understanding about where the other person has been up until that moment. Quite simply, your performance was a revelation. In that very same year, you followed up with the animated flop, Eight Crazy Nights, a rather crude and nasty animated feature about troubled man-boy who has to do community service or face time in the slammer during Hanukkah. The fact your character did everything in his power to make everyone else's holiday a living hell really rubbed me the wrong way. 

Slowly, but surely, it's gone downhill from here. Sure, you were in some good roles, the best being a funny, but major jerk comedian dying of cancer in Funny People, and yes, I thought Click was oversentemental (especially in the last third of the movie) but there was a maturity you displayed as a workoholic father who comes across a remote enabling him to slowdown, or speed up his life and it was a nice change of pace for you, but other than those two movies? 

Anger Management
Grown Ups
Just Go With It
You Don't Mess With the Zohan?????? 
To be perfectly blunt, Adam: what the fuck!? 
Even worse is your studio company, Happy Gilmore productions, which have been behind some of the worst comedies i've ever seen, including Deuce Bigalo 2The Hot Chick,The Animal, and Paul Blart: Mall Cop, just to name a few. But after those bad movies you either wrote, produced and starred in, that there was no whay you could sink any lower, or put more stress on a relationship that was edging closer and closer to its preaking point.

Then I watched your latest movie, That's My Boy.

I hoped i'd neer say these words, but here they are: Adam, i'm done with you. I can't stand what you're becoming, and i'm not about to give you another cent to watch you become a self-loathing parody of the man I enjoyed watching all those years ago. It's clear to me now that he's not coming back anytime soon, and that you're not even trying anymore. If you were, you'd realize just what an ugly, mean-spirited and disgusting comedy this is: I don't need to heat about 8th graders talking about handjobs the first 90 seconds in, and I don't need to see a younger version of you banging his teacher behind the curtains of the school's auditorium two minutes later! Look, I love a happily offensive vulgar comedy as much as the next person (The Hangover, Superbad) but when your movie exploits pedophilia for cheap laughs, there's no one - not Todd Phillips, not Judd Apatow, not even Sasha Baron Cohen - that can make this premise funny. Worse yet, this  "romance" accidentally gives birth to Todd (played by Andy Samberg), Sandler's estranged son who all but lied about his his parents died in a cataclysmic car accident. We don't blame him. Todd's about to get married to his fiancee, Jame (Leighton Meester), while the father, Donny (Sandler) is looking at prison for not paying back taxes unless he can get 43,000 by Tuesday. Donny returns to Todd's life, and the wedding is thrown into comic chaos. 

Adam, I don't know what's worse: the gags about masturbating to your son's mother's boss (who's well into her 80's BTW), the exploitation of female characters as either skanks, strippers, whores, or back-stabbing bitches, or the fact you dragged SNL alum, notable meda and sports figures, to 80's has-been Vanillia Ice and Academy-Award winner Susan Sarandon down with you. Either way, there isn't a single person in this piece of shit that escapes with having their dignity tarnished in some way. 

See how angry I am at you, Adam? How your regression has hurt me, and countless other fans? Of course you don't, because those movies have made money at the box office, no matter how tired your schtick has become, or how routine and unoriginal the gags are. I don't want to feel fustrated by you anymore, or how you're wasting away comedic talent for bottom-of-the-barrel laughs. I want to remember the good times, not movies like Zohan, or Grown Ups, especially not this or last year's Jack and Jill which I have not seen, but given how bad this current movie is, i'm better off in blissful ignorance about how much of a turd that apparently was.

Maybe you'll come out with something better, or at least, something that doesn't remind me of watching Good Luck Chuck. At this point, I doubt it. So, i'm saying goodbye to you now, Adam. It's been a fun ride, but i'm maturing now. You, sadly, never have. 

All the best, 

Jonathan.

Zero stars out of ****

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Bad Boys II Revisited

To be honest, my original review of Michael Bay's atrocious Bad Boys II was just ok. I thought I could have gone more in-depth into just how god-awful this turd was, so I decided to rework it. Here is the new and improved review of the worst movie of the last decade. Enjoy!

Over the last ten years, i've watched some truly terrible and hideous movies that, somehow, found their way to movie screens. Take the repugnant and cliched My Sister's Keeper, for example. Director Nick Cassavettes took an already heartless and disgusting premise - a family with a terminally-ill daughter conceive another child for the sole purpose of using said child as a one-stop organ shop for Sofia's (Sofia Vassilieva playing the elder daughter) needs - and turned it into an over-dramatic ethical/courtroom/family drama of a mother at war with her youngest daughter, Anna (Abagail Breslin, fire your agent) that threatens to destroy the rest of the family and that demands that you cry, damnit, cry! The only thing it did was make me pray to the movie gods that this tedious melodrama would end.

Another movie, Good Luck Chuck, a rom-com that churns out the same recycled sex gags we've seen in better and funnier films like The 40 Year-Old Virgin and American Pie, but goes one step further: it's premise of a dentist (a never unfunnier Dane Cook) who's cursed with getting laid but never being able to find true love, whist the other partner is, hearkening back to the stereotype that all men want is sex; and women, a relationship and children. The filmmakers go about beating this same drum in mean-spirited ways, from Charlie being raped by his receptionist, to him putting the curse to the test on a grotesque, obese woman, this bad sex comedy never once reaches your funny bone.

How about Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, a sequel to the 1999 movie, Charlie's Angels, which was stunningly lazy in its execution, lame in its action scenes, and filled to the brim with bad writing and terrible acting by everyone involved, including Demi Moore, who we all thought would be her triumphant return to the silver screen. Never had a sequel looked this lazy and joyless.

And what else can I say about the entirety of the The Twilight Saga that I already haven't said before?

These movies are, again, just ghastly and unpleasant films in general. I haven't even mentioned the other bad features, like Men In Black IIPirates of the Caribbean: At World's EndFreddy Got Fingered,Battlefield EarthThe HappeningLittle FockersThe Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, etc. None of the movies i've mentioned hold a candle to Michael Bay's Bad Boys II, the most unpleasant, mean-spirited, vile, and degrading piece of filmmaking i've seen in quite sometime. Before I get on with this review, allow me to take you back a decade and four year ago.

The year was 1998, and Bay made it big with the sci-fi/disaster flick, Armageddon, grossing over $553 million worldwide. Despite the film recieving a drubbing by the critics, many of them saying his blockbuster feature was filled with many plot holes, a ridiculous premise, underdeveloped characters that would barely be considered one-dimnensonal, and staging overlong, loud and bombastic action scenes for the sake of stretching out the film's 150 minute-runtime, his success at the domestic and international box office signated to Bay that all of his detractors could go fuck themselves: in his mind,  the audience didn't really care about story, character developement or a plot that's logical or has continuity. To him, all that mattered was that he give what his audience wants: carnage and destruction - quick cuts, overlong and head-pummeling action scenes, shit blowing up, stuff about stoping the enemy in the name of freedom, and hot pieces of ass that serve as fan service and to be in love with our main protagonist. 

Little did we know, Bay's style of direction (which can be equated to a 12 year-old riddled with ADHD) was just the beginning. Throught his career, he would go on an almost uninturrped streak of blockbuster hits, Bad Boys II  being part of that collection. Now, onto my review, and to do so, i'm going to paraphrase one of my favorite movie critics, Peter Travers of Rolling Stone, because it really does sum of this.....thing, in a nutshell (and, mind you, this is what he actually wrote about this paticular film):"Bad Boys 2 has everything: everything loud, dumb, violent, racist, sexist and homophobic director Michael Bay and producer Jerry Bruckheimer can think of puking up onscreen." There is not a single moment in this film's 2 hour, 22 minutes that isn't ugly, that doesn't make you wish you were watching a better, more enjoyable action film.

Our "protagonists" are two Miami police detectives, Mike Lowrey and Marcus Barnett, who are once agian played by Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, respectively. I used "protagonists" in quotation marks because these two are, arguably, some of the worst on-screen heroes to come along in ages. The pair open fire in street corners, filled with innocent civilians, to adminsiter their brand of "justice" onto the criminal underworld in South Beach (and, by justice, I mean Will Smith takes out a semi-automatic rifle from the comaprtment of his Ferrari and starts pumping shells into one of the drug dealers trying to escape - not a joke, this actually happens in one of the movie's laundry list of action scenes!); they cause obscene amounts of damage on the freeways of Miami, because it's not a good day at the office (or an action movie, apparently) without getting into a reckless car chase that could serverly injure other drivers and/or pedestrians, and endanger the lives and careeres of those working with the pair. This goes for Mike especially, because his trigger-happy personality constantly ends up putting himself and Marcus in danger. Hell, even Marcus himself admits his partner's shoot-first, ask questions never mentality early in a scene: "He's crazy! He has emotional anger issue problems! He goes to bed early for this sh*t, just to wake up to pop one in a motherfu**er!"  

Seriously, it's a miracle that the Captain of the department (Joe Pantoliano) doesn't strip the pair of their guns and badges and have them kicked off the force for their reckless behavior! In fact, Pantoliano spends about most of his screentime bitching to the Terrible Two about how their latest stunts have landed his character in hot water with higher-ups in the Miami Poliece Department. "I've got so much brass up my a** that I can play the Star Spangled Banner," he yells to the pair at one point during the film. If that's the case, Captain, then why don't you take the logical course of action and have them fired on the spot!? Oh right, I forgot: there wouldn't be a movie if this happned, and, to quote Matthew Buck of That Guy With The Glasses.com, "because the plot says so!"

Speaking of, the "plot" of this movie is almost razor thin and it takes forever to get it going, amidst all the endless shootouts, car chases and "wacky" comedic segments (i'll get to those later): a Cuban drug lord (Jordi MollĂ , in what can only be described as a fourth-rate impersonation of Pacino's iconic role as Tony Montana in Brian De Palma's Scarface) is smuggling hordes of ecstacy from his homeland of Cuba to the shores of Miami, where he's on the verge of becoming the drug kingpin of South Beach. He does this by selling it at nightclubs, which is owned by the Russian mob (yes, the Russian mob cliche is used in this movie). In order to take full control of the drugs and the money, he takes out his partners....key members in the Russian mob, a scene shown in loving, graphic detail as Marcus and Mike infiltrate the home of the Cuban druglord. To quote General Maximus, "Are you not entertained?"

This would have been a standard shoot-em-up action film, if Bay hadn't filled his movie with endless action scenes to pad out the movie's length and actually explored the character dynamics of the two partners. Oh, wait! He does, but in the worst, most offensive and tasteless ways ever concieved, passed off as "comedy". The first scene clocks in about 30 minutes in, where Mike and Marcus find a tape and have to go to an electronics store to watch the footage for clues. What they get is a woman getting fucked in the backseat of a car, the audio and video being transferred to every TV screen in the store. Are you laughing yet? The pair go to the back end of the store and share a buddy-cop moment, as Marcus talks about how hiim getting shot in the ass (yes, that really happens in the film's opening sequence)  and how he isn't able to get an erection because of the incident. By the laws of comic contrivance, that very room they cops are in just happens to have a digital camcorder playing back every word that's being uttered, to the horror of the customers at the store. If you've guessed the punchline to this "joke", then congratulations, you've spotted a cheap and tasteless pratfall the filmmakers use to get the audience to laugh hysterically! To cap off this mean-spirited and homophobic gag, an African-American woman complains to the manager about what she, and her children have seen: "IN FRONT OF MY BABIES, YOU GOT PORNO AND HOMO SHOWS UP IN HERE? WHAT KIND OF FREAK-A** STORE IS THIS? MMmm, and you two motha' f***s need Jesus! Cover your ears baby." 

This is the level of humor you can expect from this steaming turd, and believe me - that's not the worst of it all. There's worse. 

I stated earlier that Bay likes using his female characters as little more than eye candy and fan service for the mostly-male deographic who watch his movies. Apparently, dead females can't escape Bay's glorious and masterful objectifacation of the female anatomy. Mike and Marcus infiltrate a hospital where they think the drugs are being smuggled. The pair find out that Johnny Tapia, the Cuban druglord, is using corpses to smuggle the ecstacy into the country. The pair find the drugs, but not before they get a look of a recently deceased woman with large breasts. What happens next is obvious: Mike leers at her breasts, with Marcus making this comment (and i'm paraphrasing here), "this bitch has some big ol' titties!" Yes, Michael Bay, Martin Lawrence and Will Smith are actually going there: objectifying a dead woman's corpse. Funny, right? But wait, this gets better: Marcus, disgusted by the sight of dead bodies and Mike pulling out the organs in one of said dead bodies, accidenally opens the bag of ecstacy, and by the power of contrivance, two of those pills end up in a drinking glass. If you've guessed that Marcus accentally ingests the drugs unknowingly, then contratulations, you've spotted another painfully obvious gag that fails to hit the funny bone later on!  Apparently, no one on the set knows the meaning of the term, showing respect for the dead.

An hour in (this thing runs for almost 2 1/2 hours and already i'm pleading that this fucking thing ends with some mercy) and you've thought there's no way Bay and the crew can scrape the bottom of the barrel even more, that they've (finally) tapped out......if only that were so. This.......i'm not even goign to try and explain what happens when Marcus and Mike grill a 15 year-old boy trying to ask out Marcus' daughter on a date, because this has to be seen in order to be believed. Ladies and gentlemen.....the "Reggie" Scene.

Trust me when I say, this has to be the most painful and exahusting review i've ever had to write, becasue there are so many crimes committed in this one movie alone, that i'm skipping over other tasteless and crude scenes that rightfully deserve my scorn and yours as well. Here's a list of the other "hilarious" scenes that happen in the soul-crushing film:

  • Dead corpses fall out of a moving van, which Marcus and Mike run over....many times.
  • Tapia, pissed off that the two cops infiltrated his home and put his little girl in danger, shoots one of his lakeys in the head in public. Tapia's mother sees this and asks what happened, with his degenerate son lying to hher, claming that he shot himself in the head.
  • Marcus watching two rats fucking. Literally. It's shown thrice, thrusting away.
  • The final car chase in which the Bad Boys, along with a squad named Alpha 7, enter Cuba, start firing on Tapia's men, rescue Marcus's sister (Gabrielle Union) who's acted as a mole to bring down the Cuban druglord, fire on Cuban soldiers, and race to the U.S. Naval base on Guantanamo Bay, going through a shanty town and destroying the shacks in the process. Not a joke, this actually happens.
This is what Michael Bay thinks his audience wants to see, and you know what: He was right! Really.Bad Boys II grossed $46 million opening weeked, was the no.1 movie in North Amercia, and went on to a finish of almost $140 million domestically. This exercise in lowest-common denominator excess made big money at the box office, and now, there's word that Bay wants to make another sequel, Bad Boys III, in the near future. This cynical, hateful, uncarring, loud, long, racist, sexist, homophobic and degrading sack of dogshit was loved by its audience, because Michael Bay knew what they wanted and gave it to them, and then some. If this is what passes as entertainment, then it truly does speak to how effortlessly it takes to entertain the American public. Hell, a James Cameron wannabe hack could do it, it could be the worst movie of the last decade and it very well could be a frontrunner for one of the all-time worst films of the century! Wait, it's already been done, and i've just finished talking about it. Congratulations, Michael Bay. You've done it. 

Friday, June 15, 2012

NBA Finals Game 2. The Heat Rises

First of all God forgive me but this has been quite a ballsy playoff run for the Miami Heat.

Against Indiana down 2-1 and playing with out their 3rd best player they were getting eaten up and faced a large deficit in Indiana in a game that would have left them with a 3-1 deficit and a huge uphill climb to the Eastern Conference finals. Miami was left for dead. The old not 1...not 2...not 3...not 4 jokes had arisen from the ashes again. Miami not only came back and won game 4 to even the series they came to win the next two decisively and finish the Pacers 4 games to 2.

Against Boston they had lost 3 in a row and faced a 3-2 deficit and had to face Boston on the road to stave off elimination. Many in the media who had picked Miami to win the series in a decisive rout now change their tunes and decried Miami's lack of championship mettle. Again Miami arose from the dead. For maybe the first time in his career LeBron James was the all time, all-star in a clutch situation that he has long been sold to be. LeBron has often been good and sometimes great but he has rarely if ever had that MJ like true legend game. He did here. Quite simply he couldn't miss and he helped carry his team to a decisive game 6 victory at Boston. Game 7 in Miami had the look of a Boston victory until the final 8 minutes when LeBron along with Chris F'n Bosh carried the team over the hump and brought them home to the NBA finals.

So when Miami blew a lead in game 1 and fell apart down the stretch to fall behind 1-0 to the Oklahoma City Thunder perhaps It should come as no surprise that again many were quick to bury the Heat. It should also come as no surprise that the many were wrong. Miami won the all important game 2 100-96 tonight in Oklahoma City. Quite simply, though this was but the 2nd game of a series that could go 7. This was a must win game for Miami. Lose tonight and Now you have to win the next 3 games in Miami. A Herculean task at best. Now Miami can win the series in 5 though I would be shocked if they won the next three games even in Miami. However Miami has shocked us before though haven't they? What I believe is more likely to happen is Miami wins 2 of the 3 and sends the series back to Oklahoma City up 3-2. Then Oklahoma City will get game 6 and set up a fantastic winner take all game 7.

ABOUT THE OFFICIATING. First of all tonight's lead official Danny Crawford is terrible. He's one of those clowns who believes we are watching to watch him. He and his over-officious crew were blowing their whistles early and often and as a result The 3 officials got lots of TV time and most of the stars on both teams were in foul trouble sitting on the bench early in the contest. Another byproduct of this awful over-officating was that in the 4th quarter when they suddenly swallowed their whistles it looked...well silly. Players flopping, diving and just getting breathed on for 3 quarters and getting rewarded were now getting fouled legitimately but there were no calls. With the score 9896 and momentum teetering on the brink to Oklahoma City Thunder player Kevin Durant was clearly fouled Not once...not twice...OK Maybe just twice, by LeBron James and the same refs who called anything and everything for 3 quarters sat there and called nothing after Durant was obviously fouled. Game over drive home safely everybody.

After the game many people said the game was fixed and bemoaned a "fix" in favor of Miami. In My honest view the last no call aside the officiating was lousy tonight BUT it was lousy for both teams. It was lousy because there was too much of it. It was lousy because it was inconsistent. It was not lousy IMHO because they were fixing the game for the Heat.

So if you are the Thunder or a Thunder fan what can you do to get even? First of all stop falling behind by large margins early in the game. This was the third straight game the Thunder fell behind by at least 13 and had to fight from behind. It's hard to complain to hard about calls when you don't decide to start playing until the score is 18-2 against you. Faster starts are an absolute must for the Thunder from here on out if they want any chance at all to win this series. They can;t keep falling behind by large margins and relying on huge comebacks.

This game reminded me of the 2nd game of the Boston-Philadelphia series. Boston fiddle farted around for 3 quarters put on an embarrassing display of Basketball. In the 4th quarter they got series and made a huge run to get back in the game. Now with the lead down to 2 and the ball they had a chance to tie or win the contest. Kevin Garnett was called for a Godawful moving screen. The call was atrocious yet so was Boston's play for 3 quarters and that is what allowed a bad call by the Refs to ultimately play such a large roll  in the game. Same thing could be said for Oklahoma City tonight. Don't fall behind 18-2 play 4 quarters instead of 1 and half and odds are that officials mistake doesn't matter a lick.

So the series is 1-1 after 2 games. It could be, should be a long fun series. After tonight Jonathan Holmes, you know the guy who can actually write, will be taking over the duties of writing about this series if he so chooses.  By the time I am back to where I have net access the series will have ended. Of course for lovers of good quality writing this is as good as Danny Crawford officiating is bad.


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Sherrif Joe Compares Himself To Donald Trump

From land O Twitter 

 

@RealSheriffJoe Donald Trump and I, fighting Obama's birth certificate, both celebrate our birthdays today.

NBA Finals: Game 1 Thoughts.

All in all, Game 1 between the Thunder and the Heat was an exciting, thrilling match between two of the best athletes on the planet, their companions, and the bench. Some thoughts from Game 1 and what's in store for Game 2:

Durant rises; LeBron falters: As Skip Bayless would say, "the 'chosen one' became the 'frozen one'" at crunch time while Durant continues to make the case that he is he true MVP player of he year. Some stats for you: in the 4th Quarter, KD had 17 points compared to LeBron's 4. Nick Collison, an unknown bench player of all people, had two scores for 4 pts and essentially closed the book on Game 1. When a bench player looks more clutch in close games than an athlete who's won the MVP award thrice, then it's time that others in the media stop bragging how you've won the title 3 times.

The Dark Knight Struggles: Dwayne Wade, the "Caped Crusader" hasn't had a good couple of weeks in the postseason, and his performance in the Eastern Conference Finals wasn't any better. Tuesday night saw more of him struggling to be the dominant half of Miami's Dynamic Duo with 19 points, just shooting 7-19 from the field, and missing the only 2 shots he would take from 3-point range, and turned the ball over 3 times. Compare that with Shane Battier, who had 17 points, but went 4-6 from the field, had a couple of big 3's early in the 1st half (he went 4-6 from 3-point range), and didn't turn the ball over. Erik Spolstra is going to need Wade back in top form if they want to get back in the series tonight.

Giving credit where credit is due: I don't like the Heat (especially the sense of self-entitlement they think they have about winning it all) but Mario Chalmers has thusfar impressed me. Since Chris Bosh went down with the abdominal injury in Game 1 of the Eastern Semis vs Indiana, Miami's had to rely on Chalmers to help carry the slack. Since then, Chalmers' line looks roughly like this: 161 pts, 44.6 pct., 58% from the line, 59 reb. Granted, they're mediocre no's but I like how Chalmers has played through the playoffs and he's becoming a solid 3rd option for Miami with no Bosh to split the opposing side's defense.

What to look for in Game 2 tonight: I'm looking for a more aggressive Wade to come out (especially in later quarters) and be more of a dominant figure then he has been. James is going to be James, which is another way of saying, he's going to get his and he'll be great material for Sportcenter's highlight reel, but Oklahoma's yet to lose a game at home in the postseason so far, and I don't expect them to start tonight. Thunder win Game 2 in a closer game, with Durant and Westbrook closing the door.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Miami 98 Boston 79

The game obviously sucked but this out pouring of love from Celtics fans at the end of the game was special



Series is tied 3-3 game 7 Saturday night in Miami.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Dennis McHale Hates America Wants To Turn It In To A Monarchy. Make Palin Queen.

Dennis McHale commented on Sarah Palin: Wisconsin Recall Election Shows President Obama’s Goose Is Cooked 34 mins ago · Flag
I love this women. I’d make her Queen of America if I could. She would straighten out the lazy apathetic do nothings, that sit home collecting a Gov’t check.

Bad Boys II: The Worst Film of the Decade

Over the last decade, i've watched some truly terrible movies that found their way to movie screens.
My Sister's Keeper, for example, took an already heartless and disgusting premise - a family with a terminally-ill daughter conceive another child for the sole purpose of using said child as a one-stop organ shop for Sofia's (Sofia Vassilieva playing the elder daughter) needs - and turned it into an over-dramatic ethical/courtroom/family drama of a mother at way with her youngest daughter, Anna (Abagail Breslin, fire your agent) that threatens to destroy the rest of the family that demands that you cry, damnit, cry!

Another movie, Good Luck Chuck, a rom-com  that churns out the same recycled sex gags we've seen in better and funnier films like The 40 Year-Old Virgin and American Pie, but goes one step further: it's premise of a dentist (a never unfunnier Dane Cook) who's cursed with getting laid but never being able to find true love, whist the other partner is, hearkens back to the stereotype that all men want is sex, and women, a relationship and children, and goes about beating this same drum almost mean-spirited way, and it never reaches your funny bone.

How about Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, a sequel to the 1999 movie, Charlie's Angels, which was stunningly lazy in its execution, lame in its action scenes, and filled to the brim with bad writing and terrible acting by everyone involved, especially from Demi Moore, who we all thought would be her triumphant return to the silver screen? Never had a sequel to a movie looked so lazy and lifeless.

And what else can I say about the entirety of the The Twilight Saga that I already haven't said before?

These movies are, again, really terrible movies in general. I haven't even mentioned other ghastly features, like Men In Black II, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Freddy Got Fingered, Battlefield Earth, The Happening, etc.

None of the movies i've mentioned hold a candle to Michael Bay's Bad Boys II, the most unpleasant, nasty, mean-spirited, and hateful piece of filmmaking i've seen in quite sometime. Before I get on with this review, allow me to take you back a decade and four year ago: the year was 1998, and Bay made it big with the sci-fi/disaster flick, Armageddon, grossing over $553 million worldwide. Despite the film recieving a drubbing by the critics, many of them saying Bay's blockbuster feature was filled with many plot holes, a ridiculous premise, underdeveloped characters, and staging overlong, loud and bombastic action scenes for the sake of stretching out the film's 150 minute-runtime, Bay's success at the domestic and international box office signated to him that the audience didn't really care about story, character developement or a plot that's logical or has continuity, and that all they wanted to see was carnage and destruction: shit blowing up and loud, long, head-pummeling acting scenes is what they want, the it's shit blowing up they'll get!

Little did we know, Bay's style of direction (which can be equated to a 12 year-old riddled with ADHD)  was just the beginning. Throught his career, he would go on an almost inturrped streak of blockbuster hits, Bad Boys II being part of that collection. Now, onto my review, and to do so, i'm going to quote one of my favorite movie critics, Peter Travers of Rolling Stone, because it really does sum of this.....thing, in a nutshell: "Bad Boys 2 has everything: everything loud, dumb, violent, racist, sexist and homophobic director Michael Bay and producer Jerry Bruckheimer can think of puking up onscreen." There is not a single moment in this film's 2 hour, 22 minute runtime that isn't ugly, that doesn't make you wish you were watching a better, more enjoyable action film.

Our "protagonists" are two Miami police detectives, Mike Lowrey and Marcus Barnett, who are once agian played by Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, respectively. I used "protagonists" in quotation marks because these two are, arguably, some of the worst on-screen heroes to come along in ages. The pair open fire in street corners, filled with innocent civilians, to adminsiter their brand of "justice" onto the criminal underworld in South Beach (and, by justice, I mean Will Smith takes out a semi-automatic rifle from the comaprtment of his Ferrari and starts pumping shells into one of the drug dealers trying to escape); they cause obscene amounts of damage on the freeways of Miami (because it's not a good day without getting into a reckless car chase that could serverly injure other drivers and/or pedestrians!), and endanger the lives and careeres of those working with the pair; this goes for Mike especially because his trigger-happy personality constantly ends up putting himself and Marcus in danger. Hell, even Marcus himself admits his partner's shoot-first, ask questions never mentality early in a scene:

"He's crazy! He has emotional anger issue problems! He goes to bed early for this sh*t, just to wake up to pop one in a motherfu**er!"
Seriously, it's a miracle that the Captain of the department (Joe Pantoliano) doesn't strip the pair of their guns and badges and have them kicked off the force for their behavior!

The "plot" of this movie is almost razor thin and it takes forever to get it going, amidst all the endless shootouts, car chases and "wacky" comedic segments (i'll get to those later): a Cuban drug lord (Jordi MollĂ , in what can only be described as a fourth-rade impersonation of Pacino's iconic role as Tony Montana in Brian De Palma's Scarface) is smuggling hordes of exctacy from his homeland of Cuba to the shores of Miami, where he's on the verge of becoming the drug kingpin of South Beach. He does this by selling it at nightclubs, which is owned by the Russian mob (yes, the Russian mob cliche is used in this movie). In order to take full control of the drugs and the money, he takes out his partners....key members in the Russian mob, a scene shown in loving, graphic detail as Marcus and Mike infiltrate the home of the Cuban druglord. Entertained, yet, folks?

This would have been a standard shoot-em-up action film, if Bay hadn't filled his movie with endless action scenes to pad out the movie's length and actually explored the character dynamics of the two partners. Oh, wait, they do! But in the worst, most offensive and tasteless ways ever concieved, passing off as "comedy". Brace yourselves, folks, for the two clips I have prepared for you demonstrate Bay's disdain for the audience. The first scene clocks in about 30 minutes in, where Mike and Marcus find a tape and have to go to an electronics store to watch the footage.


Yes, you really did watch that correctly: Bay goes for the lowest-common denominator in humor, so why not go for the gay sexual innuendos, the contrived portable camera that happens to be playing whilst the patrons watch the conversation takimg pace on ever screen in the establishment, complete with this homophobic and disgusting line, passed off as comedy: "IN FRONT OF MY BABIES, YOU GOT PORNO AND HOMO SHOWS UP IN HERE? WHAT KIND OF FREAK-A** STORE IS THIS? MMmm, and you two motha' f***s need Jesus! Cover your ears baby."

Surprisingly enough, that's not the worst of which Bay's comedic pratfalls comes rearing it's ugly head: here's another scene, in which Marcus and Mike grill the former's daughter taking her out on a date. Ladies and gentlemen, all of the film's spiteful and nasty nature in one mean-spirited, vulgar gag (note: this scene contains gratuious use of the n-word, so skip this clip if you find such coarse language to be distressing):


A few comments on this scene: First - what was the goddamn point to this scene, other than to add some cheap laughs to an already ugly and hateful picture? Did Michael Bay, Smith and Lawrence really think that this scene was actually funny, having their characters essentially threaten the boy's life if he had sex with Marcus' daughter!?And secondly - who's parents actually allowed the kid who played Reggie, to act out a scene like this?! Did the parents not read the fucking script before letting their son act in this vulgar and tasteless scene?

Add in a chace sequence in which Mike and Marcus manuver over dead corpses (and they run over a few of them in the process) while chasing drug dealers, rat fucking, the two police detectives objectifying a dead woman's corpse over her tits, and a finale that includes the Terrible Two ramming their Hummer H2 through a slum of Cuba, and you have Bad Boys II, a crass, despariring and spiteful example of excess that the film and the filmmakers happily wallow in. What makes this movie so godaful is the fact that this made almost $140 million domestically, and over $270 million internationally! People actually payed money to watch shit being flung at the screen and they enjoyed it so much, that there were repeated viewings. That's what makes this so painful: it's that Michael Bay will continue to make these kinds of repulsive movies and that he's laughing (at us) all the way to the bank doing it.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Boston 94 Miami 90



 
3-2 Boston one win away from maybe the most improbable NBA finals appearance ever.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Friday, June 1, 2012

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