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David Poland

By David Poland

BYOB – Wed

Hours away… the helm is yours…

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54 Responses to “BYOB – Wed”

  1. Aris P says:

    Does anyone know when The Andromeda Strain airs on A&E? The trailer looks pretty decent, though I’m not sure what producer would hire Ricky Schroeder and why.

  2. Stella's Boy says:

    I don’t agree with everything he says but I found this to be an interesting read. Was The Kingdom really the first major studio release to feature Muslim terrorists since The Siege in ’98?

  3. 555 says:

    United 93

  4. DVertino says:

    Arthur C. Clarke

  5. Wrecktum says:

    The terrorists in “Arthur C. Clarke” were Tamil Tigers, not Muslim.

  6. Ben C says:

    Just saw that LOVE GURU trailer.
    Um. Is there really any reason Mike Meyers needs to come back? Haven’t people seen how fine things are without him?

  7. jeffmcm says:

    It’s Austin Powers all over again but with a different accent.
    Black Hawk Down probably counts.

  8. LexG says:

    Mike Meyers is a funny guy and an SNL legend, and he obviously has a winning formula here. LG will probably make bank, but after Goldmember and Cat in the Hat, this thing?
    Like those two, it just has that arid, dire, embarrassing vibe to it, like a guy running around an office or a party doing loud shtick with a stupid costume on, when everyone just wants to go home. So much so, that like TCITH, it almost looks SO-unfunny-it’s-actually-funny, each loud yell and winking aside to the audience so predictable and vaccuum sealed, it almost approaches inadvertant genius.

  9. Ju-osh says:

    RE: Judd Apatow’s reason for why Walk Hard tanked
    Apatow: “When we picked the date (Dec. 21), there wasn’t a lot opening,” he says. “But then, hey, they put Sweeney Todd on that date and Charlie Wilson’s War. And it was a week after I Am Legend came out.”
    Does anyone here feel that this is actually the reason?

  10. jeffmcm says:

    I would hope that Apatow is smart enough to not think so, either.
    Lex: nice irony there.

  11. I’d say it’s a possible scenario if the movie didn’t flop elsewhere in the world. I don’t even think it made the top 10 down here.
    The article about muslim terrorists sounds accurate. United 93 was a factual account and Black Hawk Down was also factual and made pre-9/11, released post-9/11 so they shouldn’t count.
    And, let’s face it, if Mike Meyers doesn’t “comeback” then the terrorists have won!

  12. Nicol D says:

    I think Apatow is very talented. But all talented people fail sooner or later. Apatow is probably still basking in all the praise he has received recently and not fully able to see the forest for the trees.
    I had two free chances to see Walk Hard at previews and passed on them both. It just looked bad.
    My view is that it was completely promoted incorrectly. I have not seen the film but my take is that it is a spoof of Walk the Line and yet it was promoted with a garrishly awful image of Reilly doing Jim Morrison in The Doors. It was one of the most unattractive posters I have ever laid eyes on with Reilly’s pasty white flesh covering bus shelters and sides of buildings for over a month. It was an unflatering shot…just an shot of Reilly looking like a naked space cadet. Not funny at all. Just garrish.
    Even if the movie is genius (though it probably is not)…that poster must have turned off a lot of people.

  13. Nicol D says:

    That was a very good article. It says much of what I have been saying here and have been ridiculed for repeatedly for years.
    Hollywood (and modern progressives) are still caught in the ideological assumptions and paradigms of the 60’s and 70’s baby boomers. Our films reflect this.
    They cannot accept that there is a horror in the world that cannot be linked to America,capitalism, Christians etc. Hence, of the films of this era, virtually no one is telling the stories that define the era.
    That is why these films flop. The best 9/11 terrorist movie so far has been Batman Begins. That is the main reason why so many say Hollywood is so out of touch with the real world.
    United 93 does not count because it is just an historical retelling. Black Hawk Down is not what we are talking about.
    Again, no one needs another Delta Force but the fact that – no one – in Hollywood wants to tell these stories is beginning to get noticed.
    There is a new film with Harrison Ford and Sean Penn called Crossing Over. One of the subplots was supposed to concern an “honour killing” of a Muslim girl by her family is my understanding. CAIR complained and the script was re-written. I’m sure it will be re-written as an Evangelical family instead.
    Why was this not a topic of dicussion on Movie City News or any other film blog? If it were a Christian group we’d be screaming holy high hell. Where were all of the article links? Where was the open thread of debate?
    This is the true censorship of our times and is why so many films of this decade will be laughable when they are screened again decades later.
    I remember seeing Penn in The Interpreter on a plane a few years back. He is looking for a potential terrorist with a dirty bomb in NY and he tells his officers something like this:
    “Everyone is a suspect. They can be any race or colour. Any age or sex. They look exactly like you and me. Now find them.”
    Now I do not remember the dialogue exactly but it is something like that. I howled with laughter when I saw it. He was the stupidest FBI agent ever. He should have got a razzie for that performance. Do you think that will not get a laugh in decades to come?
    Liberal political correctness and concerns of identity politics is the greatest censorship of our times and films like Syriana and In the Valley of Elah in 30 years will play exactly like John Wayne’s The Green Beret’s does today.
    Like a relic from a time that was so out of synch with what was happening that it was laughable.
    I am not trying to be argumentative but I am finally noticing more mainstream publications catching on and I thank you for the link. In his review of Snow Angels even Richard Corliss of Time says it would be nice to see a devout Christian portrayed in a movie who is not a psycho. People are beginning to notice how slanted modern Hollywood is by the stories they do not tell.

  14. Stella's Boy says:

    I thought you would like the piece Nicol. I found it to be very compelling. I’m sure Crossing Over will be a poor film. Isn’t it from the guy who wrote & directed Running Scared (the one without Billy Crystal)?

  15. Nicol D says:

    Yes it is. I know Running Scared had its fans but I didn’t care for it. I did like Vera Farmiga though. I think she is a real talent.
    Although all politics aside…I love the Billy Crystal/Gregory Hines Running Scared.
    Now that’s 80’s classic film-making for ya!

  16. Stella's Boy says:

    I didn’t care for Running Scared ’06 either. The other one is on cable all the time. It is a pretty entertaining 80s flick. They knew how to make buddy cop movies in that decade.

  17. Stella's Boy says:

    Oh, Nicol, what did you think of The Kingdom?

  18. Nicol D says:

    I liked The Kingdom fine. Politics aside, I did not think it was a great movie. But it was a good one.
    I saw it as my birthday movie with Eastern Promises and the Cronenberg film stayed with me more.
    I think Berg is a very interesting director who is certainly developing his own style and I loved the side performances by Cooper and Bateman the most.
    It was nice to see Cooper play someone who was not an uptight, suit wearing asshole for a change. He should seek more roles like this.

  19. LexG says:

    RUNNING SCARED OWNS YOU. Both versions.

  20. JBM... says:

    I read a draft of Crossing Over dated days before shooting started and it contained this “honor killing,” so I doubt it’s been changed (anything’s possible though).
    It’s really not a good script though. This is coming from someone who liked Running Scared.

  21. jeffmcm says:

    Nicol, I agree with you that Hollywood needs to make more movies that are relevant to the way ordinary people live their lives. On most other points of your above post, I disagree. For example, I think inner-city and working-class poverty is a deeper problem in America than Islamic terrorism.

  22. Nicol D says:

    I do not disagree with you; but then again…more often than not, working class people are portrayed as hicks and rubes in most modern Hollywood productions.
    Unless of course they can be linked to issues of identity politics and then the same cycle of political correctness begins.
    Dealing with the poor is more complicated than just making films where the villain is an evil corporate head in a suit. That is just the same ideological problem.
    …of course the film that would be most relevant to my life right now would be if Gran Torino really is a Dirty Harry film.
    Please let that be true!

  23. LexG says:

    Nicol, you may have some valid points, but I tend to think “Hollywood” is less nefarious in villainizing your brand of heartland Christian conservatism as they are just kind of clueless about it. Kind of an insular town, an insular industry. Sure there are times when an agenda seems obvious, but just as frequently these concerns don’t even occur to secular types.
    And besides, to quote a Bill Maher line about a conference on a “war on Christians”:
    “People who run everything can’t complain that they’re underdogs.”

  24. Nicol D says:

    Here is the link to the story. The script was changed and rewritten.,,2140974,00.html
    Why did we not discuss this? Why is it that if Evangelical Grandpa Jo in the Ozarks complains about something it makes headline news and we complain for days about the coming theocracy and censorship but – no one – on this blog that I can remember even mentioned this?
    Where were the links and threads on movie blogs? Where were the ususal suspects who cry censorship at the drop of a hat. I mean they were intimidated enough that they actually re-wrote the script.
    Isn’t Sean Penn the one actor who is always talking about the fascist Bush regime? Isn’t Hollywood forever reminding us about the dangers of the McCarthy era with films like Good Night and Good Luck? Where were they?
    And we didn’t even talk about it. That is one of many reasons why more people do not take Hollywood seriously. For all of the talk about censorship, freedom, Dixie Chicks, etc. they wouldn’t know real censorship if they woke up next to it after a three day bender with Paris Hilton.
    This quote is the best:
    “While we believe strongly in freedom of expression, we also believe in the importance of constructive dialogue between artists and the communities they seek to portray,” a Weinstein Company spokeswoman said. Crossing Over opens in the US later in the year.
    I laughed a lot after I read that.

  25. LexG says:

    I wish I were on a three-day bender with Paris.

  26. Nicol D says:

    Lex G,
    Christians run everything? What like a conspiracy? I’ll remember that when I pick up my pay check from the vast-right conspiracy.
    Quoting Bill Maher is not exactly a strong debating tactic.

  27. LexG says:

    Here, you can read the entire quote.
    Prepare the get OWNED by the greatest mind on the planet who isn’t me or Tom Leykis:

  28. hendhogan says:

    you mean the guy that thinks prescription drugs are not good for you? ya know, like antibiotics?
    OWNED lex. OWNED!

  29. storymark says:

    It’s amazing that you can always tell which posts are Ncole D’s without ever seeing the name.

  30. Chucky in Jersey says:

    I’ll pass on the theology and proffer up a treat: “I love it when a plan comes together”.
    It certainly will on 12 June 2009.

  31. jeffmcm says:

    Nicol, in your response to my last post you managed to suggest that I was saying something 180 degrees the opposite of what I was saying. By which I mean, we actually agree on substantive grounds but you still managed to make me feel annoyed and insulted. Well done.

  32. jeffmcm says:

    Chucky, I don’t see how it can be a good movie, since it’s going to be from the Oscar-whoring Academy Award-nominated director of Boyz N the Hood.

  33. JBM... says:

    Thanks. Wow.
    I wonder how Kramer “crossed over” this very prominent plot point. Save your applause for the end, folks…
    …and on the topic of rewrites, I read two shooting drafts of State of Play (the pre-strike one Brad Pitt quit over and one dated 1/3/08, which I didn’t know was possible). They’re both dogs.

  34. christian says:

    “Prepare the get OWNED by the greatest mind on the planet who isn’t me or Tom Leykis:”
    Tom Leykis? That fat unfunny radio toad who hates women?
    This explains everything about you now.

  35. jeffmcm says:

    It sounds like a bad movie, but this passage wasn’t enough of an explanation for you?
    “Honour killings are accepted in some Middle Eastern cultures but not accepted in Iranian culture,” NIAC president Trita Parsi said. “They sometimes happen in remote areas of Iran, but there are no cases of Iranians doing this in the US.”
    It sounds like some people are intent on finding ways to make Muslims look bad.

  36. jeffmcm says:

    Let me add that if this was a movie about an Islamic honor killing in Saudi Arabia, or Afghanistan, there’s no reason it should be altered. But chances are it would either be a small art movie with no audience or a shitty American revenge movie with no soul.

  37. Blackcloud says:

    “1/3/08” = March 1 perhaps. Some cultures put the day before the month, whereas we Americans do the opposite.

  38. L.B. says:

    “‘Everyone is a suspect. They can be any race or colour. Any age or sex. They look exactly like you and me. Now find them.’
    “Now I do not remember the dialogue exactly but it is something like that. I howled with laughter when I saw it. He was the stupidest FBI agent ever. He should have got a razzie for that performance. Do you think that will not get a laugh in decades to come?”

    Though this reminds me of the day after the Oklahoma City bombing when I said, “We should find the country responsible for that and pound it into sand.” (I was a lot dumber then.) Mistakes can be made both ways and throwing a wide net is not exactly bad police work.

  39. JBM... says:

    I’m pretty sure “1/3/08” is January 3rd, as the revision before that is “11/29/07,” something else that really shouldn’t be…

  40. Joe Leydon says:

    Seems to me I remember at least two Law and Order episodes (one on L&O, the other on Special Victims Unit) dealing with Islamic honor killings.

  41. ployp says:

    Just read the alternate ending of I Am Legend on the DVD extras. I think I like it better.
    For those you may be interested, here’s the spoiler.

  42. jeffmcm says:

    Yeah, that’s a better ending, and closer (somewhat) to the Matheson original.
    I bet there are plenty of ideologues out there who will hate it though, for daring to suggest that evil CGI zombie-men have feelings too.

  43. LexG says:

    CONSTANTINE OWNS the hell out of I AM WACK.
    At least it was long. And had Peter Stormare, who OWNS YOUR ASS.

  44. jeffmcm says:

    Lex, can you give us some kind of emoticon or brackets or something when you’re “serious Lex” vs. when you’re “WACKY LEX!” Because there’s no reason anybody should prefer Constantine to I Am Legend, so I assume my reaction is supposed to be “that nut, he’s wrong, but it’s funny!” right?

  45. LexG says:

    There’s only Lex so don’t doubt the real, SON.
    I’ll give you some reasons…
    1) IAL has been done before; Even if it weren’t another adaptation of familiar material, zombies and vampires have been done a billion times over.
    2) The Mom and kid kill the momentum of the superior first half.
    4) THE TINE is rated R.
    5) THE TINE is longer.
    6) IAL isn’t anywhere near as awesome as the Rob Zombie song of the same name.
    7) Making the lead an active scientist being the issue instead of a scared, confused everyman is a bit of a miscalculation.
    8) Despite the huge budget of both, Constantine is somehow more epic in scope and production design and less Shyamalan minimalist.
    9) The CGI looks like END OF DAYS or something at the end of the later film.
    10) This harkens back to point 1, but 28 WEEKS LATER was the same movie and better just six months earlier.
    11) A monologue about Bob Marley being awesome? That monologue should have been about Pantera.

  46. jeffmcm says:

    1. Yeah, but Constantine wasn’t particularly original either.
    2. Agreed, but they don’t ruin the movie, they merely hurt it.
    3. Sure, but they’re also the only good things in the movie.
    4. Whatever.
    5. Concision is a virtue.
    6. Whatever.
    7. Agreed.
    8. I totally disagree, IAL had broader scope and Constantine looked like it was shot on soundstages, plus it was spatially murky.
    9. No it doesn’t.
    10. Agreed, but beside the point.
    11. Whatever.

  47. LexG says:

    How does “last 30 minutes takes place in a kitchen” equate to “broader in scope”? Still, you only really disagreed on two of my points, so congratulations, you just got OWNED.
    Still, glad you’re such a fan. Nice to see you enjoying something for once.

  48. jeffmcm says:

    Emotional scope. There isn’t a single genuine emotion that I can remember from Constantine, except that the monster made of crabs was interesting and Stormare really gayed the hell out of his character, so I was less bored in those moments.

  49. JBM... says:

    Realized the chick in Shutter is Rachael Taylor, the “audio analyst” or whatever in Transformers with the distracting Australian accent. (Not knocking Aussies, but it was.) I hate Bay.

  50. jeffmcm says:

    You mean Hot Chick #2 (Blonde), I think that’s what it said in the casting call.

  51. LexG says:

    BOW before her. BOW. You are inferior.

  52. Blackcloud says:

    Lex knows all about inferiority. He OWNS it.

  53. ployp says:

    I love, love the original Shutter. That is the last movie that really scared me to death. Has anyone seen the remake yet? I wonder whether they’ll stick to the original, very creepy and disturbing story. I’ll see it next week.

  54. Hah, Rachael Taylor was in an Aussie soap called Headland (yes, that was it’s actual title) and it was absolutely dreadful. It lasted for a few weeks and then go kicked off the air. Thankfully.
    But, then again, Naomi Watts, Melissa George, Isla Fisher, Russell Crowe and Heath Ledger all appeared on soaps down here “before they were stars”.

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon