Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Lethal Weapon 2

The flash and the 'stache

The flash and the 'stache

I was first introduced to Danny Glover’s mustache (then worn as part of a goatee) in The Royal Tenenbaums, a movie that, despite walking the edge of the hipster grand canyon, never falls in and stays funny til the last drop.  Glover is so quiet, understated, and calm in that movie that I couldn’t believe he had once been an action hero.  After catching LW2 on cable, though, it’s hard to see Danny otherwise.

This movie (and the rest of the series) hits every buddy-cop cliche, and how!  The first time we see Mel Gibson in LW1, he’s impersonating Kurt Russell from Tango & Cash.  Waking up in a crappy trailer, he lights a cig and washes his mouth out with a Coors while crying into the photo of his dead wife.  (Not that there’s anything believable about these movies, but that always pisses me off.  There’s always some tough-guy cop who eats burgers, smokes butts, and drinks 12 beers a night, yet is ripped.  I think this concept launched a generation of fat white guys.)  Glover, we learn from an awkward scene where his family ambushes him naked in the tub (no bubbles, just a 17-year-old daughter checking out daddy’s junk through the ripples) to sing him happy birthday, has a beautiful family, nice house, boat and lives a clean life.

By LW2, Gibson is clean, and even has a rebound bang with a hot blonde.  Though they make it out alive from the classic bad-guys-shoot-1,563-bullets-and-miss-while-good-guy-kills-them-with-one-shot-each attack, she, too is murdered, apparently by the same guy who offed Wife #1.  20 minutes later, though, it’s all smiles as they’ve shot the last of the bad guys, because who needs due process?

This movie has some great stuff.  South African bad guys who invoke diplomatic immunity, lots of the rolling-and-shooting maneuver, Glover lacking volume control, Mel Gibson’s blow-dried locks, and an amazingly 80s-hot blonde.  I give it 4 rib tips (out of 5).

Reviving the Beast

It’s time to get this bitch rolling again.  Just because the SBMN flame has gone out in my life doesn’t mean I don’t have funny stuff to say about bad movies.  This is the first day of the rest of the smug blogstard’s life, so look out for potentially regular updates.

Steven the garbage man.

Steven the garbage man.

I own two movie posters: Hoop Dreams (the greatest movie of all time), and Out For Justice.  Of the Four Great Steven Seagal Movies, it’s the one that gives me the most joy.  Sure, Under Siege is pretty much a perfect movie, and I’ve watched it at least 20 times.  Sure, Hard to Kill and Above The Law both bring their share of awesome fights, awkward sex scenes, and hilarious chill sequences.  But to me, Seagal hit his peak exactly two movies before he became a self parody.  

Out for Justice brings it from the very start and doesn’t quit until Seagal kicks the dog hater in the nuts.  The Italian-American “accent” employed throughout by Steven makes Al Pacino’s nonsense in Scarface sound authentic.  The key piece of evidence is a pornographic photo of Seagal’s murdered best friend cheating on his wife, and they’re literally smiling for the camera.  Gina Gershon has a cameo as the classic ornery-sex-worker-who-gets-talked-into-helping-the-good-guys, and that dude from Law & Order with the eyebrows fits in there somewhere.  

But to me, the best part is that we’re dealing with the best version of Seagal ever here.  He hadn’t gotten fat yet, and wasn’t afraid to let the guns breathe.  He had been in enough movies to start being joky and whimsical, but not yet annoying and preachy.  And best of all, he still moved well enough to do lots of great fight scenes, especially the two classic set-ups: the butcher shop and the bar.

Out For Justice brings all the stuff we love about Steven Seagal’s career with none of the shittiness of his direct-to-DVD crap.  Grab a brew, chow on some tips, put it on, and you’ll go to bed with a smile.

4/16/09: Cruising

Editors Note: I was lazy and wrote this after the movie, so it’s more of a review.

The dark shadows of the evil ultrafags.

The dark shadows of the evil ultrafags.

After a week of fever sweats and hacking on a lung, I was more than ready for movie night.  Add in the anticipation of Al Pacino going undercover as a leatherdaddy, and I was downright pumped.  My 101-degree blood was flowing at record speed as we settled into the couch, everyone’s little hearts aglow.

You see, few movies have come into SBMN with as much upward potential as Cruising.  The homoeroticism of flicks like Point Break and North Dallas Forty have made us laugh ourselves to the brink of tears.  The idea of Michael Corleone going inch by inch into Bravo’s primetime schedule seemed to be the logical end of this aim.  

The problem, of course, is that you don’t want the logical end of a good thing.  A little (or a lot of) homoeroticism is good in an overly macho movie; it keeps things relaxed, it’s funny, and, above all, you don’t have to watch anal fisting scenes.  In Cruising, you do, and there are some things you just can’t unsee. (That link is not tubgirl. Promise.)  It’s like a David Lynch movie: all the things that should be bubbling under the surface creating tension are being shoved directly into your face.  And there are some things you just don’t want in your face.  

Even if this movie weren’t so incredibly offensive (the main conclusion is that pretty much any gay man could be a killer or a rapist, none of them have any morals), it would still be terrible.  It’s 45 minutes of material stretched out to 102 minutes, Al Pacino just walks around and looks depressed the whole time, and the only redeeming thing is the mysterious 7-foot-tall-black-guy-in-a-jock-strap the police use to beat suspects.

Do not watch this movie.

Keanu Capulet meets Patrick Montague.  

 

 

Keanu Capulet meets Patrick Montague.

The word “bromance” gets thrown around an awful lot these days.  Apparently, some out there think it means just any ol’ friendship that is pretty close.  This is a mistake.  For it to be a true bromance, there has to be some ambiguity.  There have to be awkward moments.  The bubbling undercurrent of homoerotic tension has to be ever-present.  Without it, you’ve just got bros, no mance.

Which brings me to this week’s pick, Point Break.  Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze really pushed the established limits in 1995 of hetero-hetero love in this one.  Keanu goes undercover to infiltrate Swayze’s surfing/skydiving/bank-robbing ring.  He gets in, but perhaps too deep, and feelings get in the way.  Sure, there’s probably some ’90s-hot love interest, but we all know what’s going on here.  A cop and a criminal.  Forbidden love.  And plenty of Gary Busey.

SD

Get running, meathead.  

 

 

Get running, meathead.

When “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” hit the airwaves, any dystopia became less far fetched.  Who are we as a generation when a live act that can make nerds dance decides to back the worst SNL cast member since Jim Breuer (and to do it on their own dime!).

As far as dystopias go, The Running Man doesn’t disappoint.  In an unexpected twist for an action movie, Arnold is framed. He has the choice between life improsonment and a sick, depraved game show where he will likely be murdered on live television by any number of washed up American Gladiators.

I think the episodic, stage-by-stage, video game-esque progression is an underused format in movies.  It sure as hell worked for The Warriors, and I have an inkling it’s gonna work for Arnold.

SD

 

You've gotta hand it to their marketing department.

You've gotta hand it to their marketing department.

So you’re young Patrick Swayze.  You’re the king of Smalltown High in Podunk, USA.  You spend your days tough-guying around with your little bro Chuck, and chumming it up with Mrs. McFly and Ferris’ sister.  

Then shit gets real.  

Paratroopers come and mow down your trig class with machine guns.  Somehow, tanks are everywhere and you’re on the run.  But what better way to take down a Soviet invasion than 8 annoying kids with guns and RPGs?

Red Dawn is an undeniable classic.  The early scenes of the invasion are riveting, the acting is terrible, and the script just won’t quit.  On the down side, it goes on too long, once La Résistance begins it’s pretty repetitive, and as much as I like watching Wolverines fail, the slow death of the gang is a little depressing.  That said, this movie brings so much to the table, I can’t fault it for licking a few dinner rolls.