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David Poland

By David Poland

BYOB Wednesday

Silent, but deadly…
LA in late August 2009.

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91 Responses to “BYOB Wednesday”

  1. EthanG says:

    Meaningless but kind of fun…the record for most domestic $100 million grossers that’s stood since the glory year of 2003, when 29 films hit that mark, is probably going down this year.
    Distict 9 and Basterds will give us 20 films that have hit that mark this year…with a bunch more to follow.
    Virtual locks to hit $100 mil: “New Moon,” “Avatar,” “Alvin and the Chipmunks 2.”
    Very likely will hit $100 mil: “Sherlock Holmes,” “2012,” “A Christmas Carol,” “The Princess and the Frog.”
    Somewhat likely: “The Lovely Bones,” “Old Dogs,” “Where the Wild Things Are.”
    Have a shot: Michael Jackson’s This is It, “Nine,” “It’s Complicated,” “Surrogates,” “Couples Retreat,” “Invictus.”
    Let the “banner year at the box office” stories commence soon…

  2. Joe Leydon says:

    After reading some of the comments here lately, I’m curious: Has anyone ever heard of a case where two people who sniped at each other on a blog really did get together in real life for a rumble? And, was it just a shoving match, or did someone receive a serious beatdown? Were weapons involved?

  3. LexG says:

    NEW MOON is going to make 500 MIL. Yes, 500 million with an opening weekend of 200 right off the bat. This time it’s not just all the chicks who read those books, but all the dudes who got dragged to it and saw K-STEW and it changed their lives. Plus this time you throw in FANNING POWER and the world will BOW.
    I don’t know that I’m so sure SURROGATES will be as big as EthanG thinks, despite it having THE AWESOMEST PREMISE IMAGINABLE: Getting to live vicariously through some perfected robot version of yourself that goes out and BANGS CHICKS. WHY do they not work on this kind of technology, or female robots, or female clone slaves, FOR REAL, instead of wasting money on the space program and other dumb bullshit?
    But back to Surrogates: I’ve asked a zillion times, but how come in 2009 with all the CGI cities and destruction that can be rendered on film, someone can’t make a BELIEVABLE WIG? Christ, that blonde carpet on Willis’s head instantly makes the movie look cheesier than need be; That piece wouldn’t pass muster on a 12:52am SNL sketch.

  4. Cadavra says:

    I think John Simon and Andrew Sarris once went at each other with rolled-up copies of Cahiers du Cinema.

  5. Hopscotch says:

    Ethan G,
    Nice research on that idea. I had no idea 2003 was the record holder.

  6. mutinyco says:

    I’m wondering. In the past, there seems to have been one unassailable director that sort of defines an era for young filmmakers and those in academia. The ’80s was all about Scorsese. Before that, Kubrick. The ’90s had Tarantino.
    But who holds that place today?
    Early in the facade PTA had a fervent following. And Wes Anderson has had an obvious aesthetic influence.
    But I don’t see anybody who’s a straight-up GOD.

  7. mutinyco says:

    Decade not facade…

  8. Crow T Robot says:

    You know, Mutiny, I’ve been thinking a bit about this past decade and what it all adds up to compared to previous decades. And it looks like it will come up deficient in a lot of ways…
    – Who are the great original characters in cinema? (ones not cartoons, ones not based on any other work before 2000, ones that aren’t real life people)
    – Who are the decade-defining new movie stars? (big actors we’d never heard of before the year 2000)
    – Who are the great young directors? (again, ones that weren’t on the radar in the 1999s)
    These aren’t as easy questions to answer as they were at the end of 1999.
    And as always, I blame the geeks.

  9. Me says:

    I would argue that it is David Chase, and that the oughts will be remembered as the decade that TV thrashed the movies as the visual narrative art form of choice.

  10. christian says:

    Only if you’re really into watching TV shows.

  11. Me says:

    Well, just look at how much easier it is to answer Crow’s questions.
    The great characters: Tony Soprano, Don Draper, Tommy Gavin, Jack Bauer, Swerenger, Nancy Botwin, the list goes on and on. The interesting characters are on tv.
    The actors: Who knew James Gandolfini or Jon Hamm before their shows. Keifer Sutherland and Denis Leary were forgotten.
    Directors: Is there anyone in Hollywood who would turn down David Chase if he said he was going to do another TV series?
    Scoff if you want, Christian, but I’d put the best of tv up from this last decade well above the best movies.

  12. christian says:

    I’m not scoffing, it’s just not a heady comparison.
    Where the Kubrick of television?

  13. palmtree says:

    My candidates for people who’s major films came out 2000 and later and made films of undeniable impact:
    Christopher Nolan
    Alfanso Cuaron
    And two TV crossover guys to consider:
    Judd Apatow
    JJ Abrams

  14. Me says:

    Christian, I do think you’re scoffing, as no matter what I say, you’ll say, “yeah, but Kubrick.”
    Frankly I think that if you actually look at the way David Chase changed the landscape of tv, allowing for broody, cold, clinical examination, moments of extreme human beahvior, adding depth to genres that didn’t previously cut so deep, and allowing for flawed characters who felt real, you’ll see that the comparison is pretty valid. He opened the door for a Mad Men examination of early 60s culture, for a Wire crime series that was a lot more than just cops and robbers, for a Shakespearean western like Deadwood, for the 9/11-influenced sci-fi drama Battlestar Galactica.
    I think the title applies to him a lot more than to someone like Apatow, who is probably the only one close you can talk about for movies.

  15. christian says:

    No, I could also say “what about Wes Anderson or Tarantino or Soderbergh or Spielberg?”
    I think the intimacy of tv is its strength but in no way duplicates the cinematic experience. I like theaters and I like Panavision. Chase is great, but it’s not always my bag.

  16. Joe Leydon says:

    The Kubrick of TV? If we’re talking about ’60s, Rod Serling. Seriously. Then as now, TV is a writer/producer’s medium more than a director’s medium.
    But Mutiny, I’m curious: What decade would you say Kubrick defined? Not the ’70s, surely? Because I can think of five or six other filmmakers who could stake more substantial claim to that decade. And why would you say Scorsese defined the ’80s? Because of Raging Bull?

  17. Joe Leydon says:

    Damn. Sorry about the double post. That’s my second one today.

  18. christian says:

    I think Kubrick transcended defining any particular decade, though clearly he ruled the 60’s.

  19. mutinyco says:

    I think I was just posing a general question. Fine if you think so and so director owned so and so decade.
    I say Scorsese owned the ’80s because he stood for something that decade. He was essentially the NY guy who refused to compromise during a cultural decade influenced by Spielberg’s commercialism. For a long time, people in the NY scene really viewed it that way.
    When I took some workshops in the early ’90s, all of the NYU trained people were dogmatic about Scorsese and Kubrick. And Spielberg was Satan.
    I don’t really see that kind of idol-worship anymore. And speaking of decades, would it not be unreasonable to suggest Godard was, to that sort of demo, God (pun intended) of the ’60s?…

  20. LexG says:

    So can we not count guys who directed in the ’90s at all? (PTA, WA, Bay, Fincher, Liman, Fuqua, Aaronofsky, Jackson, O. Russell?)
    Then we’re left with, what? Rob Apatow (though he’s been around in comedy/writing form for twenty years), David Gordon Green (hardly a major player or name), Rob Zombie, Gore Verbinski (HUGE hits but not a “star” director), Sofia Coppola, Rian Johnson, Paul Haggis (been writing for decades), Catherine Hardwicke (worked on sets for years and years), Alexandre Aja, Neil Blomkamp, James Wan, Darren Lynn Bousman, Neveldine/Taylor, Peter Berg (been around forever)?
    I don’t know, kinda stretching here if you can’t say anyone who directed anything pre-2000. Who else is even on the qualifying list?

  21. LexG says:

    In terms of fanboy and film geek passion pro- and con-, I’d propse Fincher and Bay as the ’00s equivalent of any old ’80s/’90s Scorsese vs. Speilberg type discussions. And I’d say those late ’90s guys from my first paragraph above (including prolific ’90s writer Apatow) all “owned” this decade more than any specific new, young voice.

  22. torpid bunny says:

    Scorsese and Kubrick are almost unique in my mind because they combined a genuinely transgressive sensibility with a mass appeal. Other directors may be as good or even better in a variety of ways, but that seems like a really tough combo to pull off. Cronenberg or De Palma may be gods to some, but they’re unlikely to ever get the cultural penetration SK and MS got. Cameron’s great but he’s not transgressive in the slightest. I’m sure there are other examples people could think of, but those two are the kings in my mind. I think Tarantino initially looked like he might be that kind of director, but it has since developed that he just loves exploitation style filmmaking, and his provocations are basically genre based. In my mind there’s not really a deeper perspective in his work like there is for the other two.

  23. The Big Perm says:

    I also think tv is, in a lot of ways, more rewarding than movies a lot of times. Too bad for me since I don’t watch that much of it. But watching Band of Brothers or the Sopranos on DVD in big chunks was great…you connect with characters and get to follow them for a long time and care about what happens to them. In that regard, I would have liked to have seen that potential Inglorious Basterds tv series.
    Of course the problem with tv is they generally don’t know when to quit, and extend the show past it’s prime until by the end it’s just a limp version of what was.
    I think saying Scorses ruled the 80s is just wishful thinking by New Yorkers. That was a Spielberg era. Sure Scorsese stood for something, but of course that was also the period where his movies were more marginalized and he struggled to get anything going. I don’t count Raging Bull as an 80s movie by the way, that was a product of the 70s.
    But I agree, there aren’t really many new directors or actors who inspire any kind of passion. But the old guard still has a pretty firm grip on everything, that will clear up and the new blood will step in.

  24. Joe Leydon says:

    Well, Mutiny, didn’t Scorsese actually train at NYU? So maybe their opinions were a bit, well, skewed? Also: I wonder what the faithful thought during the 1980s when Scorsese directed The Color of Money — a movie I enjoyed, but was as mainstream commercial as they come — and an episode of Steven Spielberg’s Amazing Stories. Actually, I think you could argue that Woody Allen was the real NY maverick during this period. But, hey, to each his own.

  25. Lane Myers says:

    Question for Marvel fans, I know there have been a lot more movies made from Marvel source materials than just Spidey, Hulk and Iron Man (Daredevil? Electra? The Phantom?) Can someone off the top of their head list the movies, including the lesser known properties that had modest box office?
    Signed Too Lazy to look it up.

  26. Joe Leydon says:

    There was a Cannon Films production of Captain America, and a low-budget Fantastic Four that was never released. Also, some episodes of the live-action Spider-Man TV series have been strung together as movies, and turn up from time to time in syndication. And some Hilk made-for-TVers with Bill Bixby.

  27. LYT says:

    Don’t forget the first Punisher movie starring Dolph Lundgren.
    Daredevil -yes, w/Ben Affleck
    Elektra – yes, Jennfer Garner
    Ghost Rider
    made-for-TV Nick Fury movie starring David Hasselhoff
    Daredevil and Thor made appearances in some of those Bill Bixby Hulk TV movies.
    The Phantom isn’t Marvel.

  28. The Big Perm says:

    Wow, Marvel really had a shit run for a loooong time, didn’t they?
    Wasn’t Blade Marvel? Perfect example, along with Iron Man for when people say they should only make comic book movies out of characters anyone’s heard of. You just need a good concept and a good character, and then the rest will work out if it works out.

  29. martin says:

    “You just need a good concept and a good character”
    Perm, then you don’t really need the comic book, do you?

  30. The Big Perm says:

    Yeah, not really. Although adapting a comic is as good as anything else when it comes to pulp action pictures. It’s those, crap novels, or new characters like Indiana Jones…which wouldn’t bother me at all. But I guess I’d rather have another Blade than a Riddick.

  31. LYT says:

    Forgot about Blade — that was really the start of Marvel’s recent run. Though part II is the only one I can stand to rewatch.

  32. leahnz says:

    marvel shmarvel, what really matters is that [rec]2 is out soon! can’t wait to see what those little spanish minxes balaguero & plaza have in store — particularly intriguing is the return of angela (que?), considering the last shot of that most fucked-up of scenes to conclude the original [rec] (i’ll never look at big saggy knickers in quite the same way again, yikes. i don’t think i could bear more of those undies)

  33. Hallick says:

    HBO is the real auteur of the decade (even if you have to fudge it a little bit to include the late 90’s):
    Curb Your Enthusiasm
    The Wire
    The Sopranos
    Sex & The City
    Big Love
    Six Feet Under
    True Blood
    Angels In America
    Band of Brothers
    From The Earth To The Moon
    The Corner
    Tenacious D
    The Chris Rock Show
    The Dennis Miller Show
    Real Sports
    Mr. Show
    Someday people will look back and marvel at how the hell so many great series came about in such a short period of time on one cable channel. Just having The Sopranos and The Wire on at the same time was monumental all on its own.

  34. jeffmcm says:

    It sounds like the question implicitly posed by Mutiny was “who’s the guy that all the young filmmakers/film students are emulating?” which was definitely true of Scorsese and Tarantino in their respective eras.
    As someone who was in film school not that long ago, I’d say there is no one person, but that TV is the biggest single influence, for good and for bad (I saw so many 24 frames-within-frames ‘parodies’). And Wes Anderson’s stylistics come a close second.

  35. LexG says:

    Well, if there’s a LOOK that’ll define ’00s film, maybe it doesn’t come from one specific director, but when we look back it’ll be characterized by:
    That sickly green-and-grain cinematography. Prieto and Libatique being the chief purveyors: Grungy locales, excessive grain, post-Photoshop unnatural color timing and tweaked tints. Think 8 Mile, Requiem, 25th Hour, Amores Perros, 21 Grams, the Saw flicks, the “new” era Ridley and Tony stuff, Spike’s flicks. It’s a decade where even Old Masters like Spielberg and Eastwood went back on their formerly naturalistic palettes and embraces grain, desaturation, near b&w flooded blown-out looks. What this has to do with the sociopolitical/economic nervousness of the times, I’ll leave up to you, but there’s definitely a “look” that screams ’00s cinema. Even a Bruckheimer Extravaganza like the POTC franchise was shot through Verbinski’s lint-filter desaturation and green murk.
    If you’re talking thematics, I’ll let someone smarter take the floor; But if the shortcut to thinking prevalent in Film Studies discourse is that “the ’70s were tense and paranoid, the ’80s were gung-ho Reaganesque crowdpleasers, and the ’90s were Irony Age, Clinton Years Gen X ennui,” then I guess you’d have to talk about the current decade in relation to the obvious way 9/11 and the Internet age shaped our fraught worldview and fractured access to information. Everything from all those coincidence-laden Haggis/Babel flicks to Clint’s stuff to even Apatow seems to be influenced by that… or not. I’ve never put much stock in those easy explanations, but I could if someone wanted to get an A on their thesis paper, they could trace the neutered male desconstruction of 90% of the 00s movies to some perceived larger statement about America’s role in the world…
    or something.

  36. jeffmcm says:

    Good post.
    One of the big themes of the ’00s seems to have been guilt and self-flagellation.

  37. LexG says:

    Seriously, right? Just thinking of all the major beloved, successful, lauded or acclaimed films of this decade: The Departed, Crash, Brokeback Mountain, Minority Report, 25th Hour, No Country, Jesse James, There Will Be Blood, The Passion, Memento, Flags of Our Fathers, Mystic River, 21 Grams, Requiem for a Dream, I Heart Huckabees, Devil’s Rejects, Sideways, About Schmidt, Catch Me If You Can, Little Children, Benjamin Button…
    A whole lot of male deconstruction, anxiety, guilt, loss of power and standing.
    Again, typical film school talking out of one’s ass, but you could make a pretty good case for tying all that to the uncertain and changing world scene.

  38. jeffmcm says:

    Yes. Plus you left out such highlights as the Bourne series (I’m guilty because I’m a spy), the Batman movies (I’m guilty because I’m a superhero), the Star Wars prequels (rise of the Empire), Munich, Eternal Sunshine, and the Apatow movies (I’m guilty because I can’t be a boy forever).
    Hell, even the Saw (which I hate) movies fit that bill, as intent as they are a posture of self-flagellating moralizing.

  39. jeffmcm says:

    Oh, and how could I forget the guiltiest of all super-hero guiltfests, the Spider-Man series?

  40. LYT says:

    I’m not sure the Saw movies quite fit the thesis…they’re about victims who are forced to self-flagellate against their will, and usually fail to do so.
    Jigsaw never feels remotely guilty, though he is emotionally torn when he has to test his apprentice Amanda knowing that she’ll probably fail.

  41. LexG says:

    Several unrelated points:
    1) Saw is awesome.
    2) I don’t think of Spider-Man as being particularly guilty, though he is kind of an emasculated douche. Kirsten Dunst is BEYOND HOT, so why isn’t Peter ALL OVER that shit. I’d be shooting some major web with her, if you know what I mean.
    3) Blade II is fine and Del Toro is world-class and all, but Blade III is where it’s at. BIEL POWER. REYNOLDS POWER. GOYER GIANT WINDOWS AND WIDESCREEN POWER. The first one is kind of awesome because Stephen Dorff is GOD and N’Bushe Wright is HARDCORE as hell.
    4) HOLY SHIT @ MILA KUNIS on FERGUSON just now. Entering UNKNOWN LEVELS OF CHARMING and AWESOME; She’s actually FUNNY, which is something I NEVER like in women, but she’s all cool and gamely playing along while wearing BLACK LEATHER SKIN TIGHT PANTS WITH GIANT HEELS and kicking her leg the whole interview where the shoe keeps popping up into frame. SO HOT.
    5) Maybe EXTRACT looks pretty awesome. Bateman, Kunis, Judge (genius) and Affleck = can’t go wrong. But, fuck, obviously GAMER is more pressing.

  42. jeffmcm says:

    I’m including the Saw movies because they’re guilt-by-proxy. Instead of the standard slasher movie paradigm from the 70s and on (innocent victims) the Saw movies are (purportedly) about punishing people for actual wrongs that they’ve done – pretty much everyone who dies Has It Coming for one reason or another.
    Imagine, if only the movies had been good, what kind of impact they might have had?!

  43. LexG says:

    “Imagine, if only the movies had been good…”

  44. jeffmcm says:

    Off-topic, have we all just gotten used to Typekey just logging us out five minutes after our last post? Because it still does that, and it’s still annoying as shit.
    Back to the topic –
    If SNL can do parodies making fun of Spider-Man 3 for being one scene of ‘can you forgive me?’ after another, then there must be something there, because SNL isn’t exactly the sharpest group of satirists in the drawer.
    Blade III is the awful one after an okay #1 and an awesome #2. I dozed off.

  45. LexG says:

    Unfortunately, you have to put up with both Patton Oswalt and that tool from PRISON BREAK to get your Biel Fix.

  46. leahnz says:

    ryan reynolds should stick to funny and NEVER try to act a badass again, he just doesn’t have it in him, not a tough bone in his (rather nice) bod. i think biel could kick his ass

  47. LexG says:

    I’d love for Biel to kick my ass.
    Biel in Blade 3 is the hottest hot to ever hot.

  48. LYT says:

    Disagree with you, Jeff, on several points…
    The subtext of slashers is, and has always been, that the victims have it coming on some level, whether for having premarital sex, doing drugs, not listening to authority figures (TAKEN played this to the hilt), or more explicit crimes in the Saw films. In the Friday the 13th remake it was for taking Jason’s weed.
    And Saw 1-3 are GREAT. Don’t even take my word for it…my editor Scott Foundas at LA Wweekly wrote that Saw 3 had more to say about guilt and redemption than BABEL. He’s right.
    Did you watch 1-3? Guarantee you Tobin Bell thinks about his role more seriously than most actors. And the John-Amanda relationship arc throughout 1-3 is the heart of the thing…lost the point after killing both off at the end of 3.

  49. Stella's Boy says:

    I don’t think either of you is right. I’ve seen Saw 1-3 and they get progressively worse. I have no desire to see the other ones because even horror sites say they are terrible and I’ve been punished enough by watching the first three. LYT, I think you’re a cool dude, but I just don’t get your affection for the Saw flicks. (Plus, it doesn’t take much to be deeper than Babel.)

  50. In regards to some of the best breakthroughs of the decade, those who will go on to – hopefully – full careers of great movies. And, by the way, its not my fault if you haven’t heard of some of Aussie titles. We don’t speak an exotic language so our films don’t get default releases around the world, but we’ve made some of the very best films of the decade.
    Warwick Thornton, Samson & Delilah
    Courtney Hunt, Frozen River
    Matthew Saville, Noise
    Andrea Arnold, Red Road
    Sarah Watt, Look Both Ways
    Judd Apatow, The 40-Year-Old Virgin
    Thomas McCarthy, The Station Agent
    Fernando Meirelles, City of God
    John Cameron Mitchell, Hedwig and the Angry Itch
    Naomi Watts (what a coming out party Mulholland Drive was? Still the best performance – male or female – of the decade)
    Anne Hathaway
    Saoirse Ronan
    Shia LaBeouf
    Sacha Baron Cohen
    Emily Blunt
    Emily Barclay
    Rachel McAdams
    Chiwetel Ejiofor
    Viola Davis
    Maggie/Jake Gyllenhaal
    Technically not a cinema breakthrough, but I’d also say Joseph Gordon Levitt.

  51. Also, I mentioned it in the last BYOB thread, but then this popped up a day later, so I’d just like to know what people think about the news that Village Roadshow – the most prominent local distributor here in Australia – of pulling The Hurt Locker from it’s late October release and have (apparently, they’ve been suspiciously quiet on the matter) are sending it direct-to-DVD.
    Obviously they don’t see any money in this probably best picture nominee. Stoploss made less than $1000 per cinema upon its release last August and the best Australian film of the year, Three Blind Mice, all but failed to get a release on more than 2 cinemas around the country and its not hard to figure out that distribs saw the words “Iraq war” and immediately put it aside).

  52. christian says:

    Yes, this Typekey re-sign in is for the birds. I thought it was just my computer fucking up.

  53. jeffmcm says:

    LYT, I can’t agree with you. I think the Saw movies are attempting (and failing at) a greater degree of moralizing than any horror franchise had ever attempted in the past. I mean, they really are just the extrapolated, artless versions of John Doe from Fincher’s Seven.

  54. Wrecktum says:

    Going back to mutinyco’s original question, undoubtedly the greatest character creation of the ’00s is Captain Jack Sparrow. Instantly iconic.

  55. LexG says:

    Also the decade that launched K-STEW, Megan Fox, Rachel McAdams, Keira Knightley, Anne Hathaway, Evan Rachel WOOD, Rachel Nichols, Sienna Miller and a whole bunch of other awesome actresses who will one day be as infamous as Monroe and Hayworth. BOO-YAH.

  56. LYT says:

    “I think the Saw movies are attempting (and failing at) a greater degree of moralizing than any horror franchise had ever attempted in the past.”
    More so than the blatant sex=death theme that pervades every Friday the 13th? If and when SCREAM is rebooted, will a character be able to sum up as succinctly the very specific things you must not do in order not to be placed in a SAW trap?
    “I mean, they really are just the extrapolated, artless versions of John Doe from Fincher’s Seven.”
    Both are rooted in the industrial music scene of the ’90s, it’s true (Fincher, Wan, and Bousman ALL owe their aesthetic to Ministry and NIN videos, especially “Happiness in Slavery”)…but John Doe is a homicidal artist, while John Kramer sees himself as a messiah. Doe isn’t trying to save anyone; he’s trying to ruin Brad Pitt completely. Kramer’s goal is the opposite, using similar ends — he wants Shawnee Smith to prevail and continue his legacy, but knows she probably won’t.
    The Saw movies can only be accused of moralizing if you think that the film is honestly on the side of the character doing the moralizing…and while the character of Kramer is absolutely humanized, I don’t think the filmmakers ever take the stance that what he does is right, just that HE is certain it is. Then in part 3, you get his apprentice who’s certain that SHE is more right…both end up ruining each other’s plans by virtue of their twisted ideals.
    And then parts 4 and 5 ruin it by saying he had a much more loyal apprentice all along. I like to pretend those don’t exist.
    Critics of horror movies all too often, it seems to me, assume that there can have been no greater level of thinking than the surface, and so don’t look.
    Stella’s Boy, I’m not trying to make you agree…you said you don’t get what I see, and I’m just attempting to clarify.

  57. martin says:

    Kami you did a great job on Lex’s new superfriends episode, I find it amusing how Lex knows this much background detail about the posters. Like did Don Lewis actually get involved in some bumfight video, or am I just not getting some of the jokes?

  58. Joe Leydon says:

    Martin: But he should know that I have never suggested that you should put BBQ sauce on anything but… well, you know…

  59. martin says:

    Hm that one didn’t register, did he mean you like to cook dicks like on a bbq or just use bbq sauce on them? And is Jeff M a big fan of bartles and james? I never read that on here but if so that’s pretty funny.

  60. Joe Leydon says:

    I have said BBQ sauce on pussy is delicious. (So, by the way, is Merlot.) I have no idea what it tastes like on cock.

  61. martin says:

    i guess based on this video you’d have to ask Kamikaze that question.

  62. Joe Leydon says:

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

  63. LexG says:

    Joe, I just had you bringing the BBQ sauce to a party in case there was any need to use it (on a woman). In my mind you carry sauce with you at all times, 24/7, just in case.
    I don’t think there’s any insinuation it’s for anything else but your trademark usage.

  64. Joe Leydon says:

    OK, if you say so.

  65. jeffmcm says:

    I have no idea what Lex is saying about me re: Bartles and Jaymes (I’m assuming it’s not flattering) but I have never partaken in any B&J beverage.
    LYT, to answer your question (More so than the blatant sex=death theme that pervades every Friday the 13th?): Yes. The sex=death element in those movies is really a minor, pretextual-at-best element. In fact, I don’t think it even comes into play after the first 3-4 movies, by which point the character of Jason had been established, and he pretty much just killed anyone, right? I could be mistaken because I’ve only seen most of those movies once.
    The point is, I think that the Saw movies have relied a lot more heavily on a phony moralizing, that yes, the movies tend to think of John Kramer as some kind of infallible moral compass, and that the movies fail because they don’t recognize their own moral incompetency and pretentiousness.

  66. jeffmcm says:

    I saw The Final Destination tonight and I think it’s pretty striking how much better the two Morgan/Wong movies (1,3) are than the two David Ellis movies (2,4). I mean, it’s pretty obvious that M/W are real filmmakers who know how to deal with actors and understand character and what a horror movie should be, and Ellis just knows how to stage action/stunt sequences.

  67. LexG says:

    Funny, I thought FD4 was the most entertaining(ly bad) since the quite-good original.
    And usually I’d agree with you, since I prefer horror that takes itself seriously instead of Ellis’s goofy/cheesy cardboard approach. But as with Cellular, there’s something disarming about his self-aware clunkiness. (Good call on whoever said we never learn what any of the kids do or how they afford their cushy lifestyle.)
    But what the fuck was that CROSS-BURNING bit doing in a goofy horror comedy?

  68. LexG says:

    Also: (and no one will care….)
    I realize this month is one of those Poland-derided “dead zones,” but just me or are there more movies in September than all four summer months combined? Seems like about 11 studio releases dropped during the BIGTIME MOVIE SEASON!
    Yet there’s like seven studio releases every weekend all this month and next. (And yes, I make this observation every spring and early fall.)
    Just now I saw a TV spot for some PETER HYAMS flick with Michael Douglas… that comes out next week? Who has ever heard of this, like, ever? For anyone who likes horror, revenge flicks, and bad B-action (ie, NOT David Poland), this is a much busier and more interesting month than Cartoon-and-Apatow July.

  69. LexG says:

    Also wanna note that the tv spot for the above Douglas movie is so low-rent that they break up the title like this:

  70. Stella's Boy says:

    Lex I’m with you. Outside of Public Enemies I’m way more excited about September than July. I think Extract looks great and I love the cast. Gamer looks interesting and I’m a big Michael C. Hall fan. Sorority Row looks like trashy slasher fun. I can’t wait to see The Informant. Plus, Jennifer’s Body and Pandorum (lots of horror this month). Not sure about Whiteout and Surrogates. Oh, and I’ve never heard of Beyond a Reasonable Doubt. It’s a remake? Anyway, good month.

  71. LYT says:

    Jeff: you are mistaken about Friday the 13th. The entire reason Jason drowns in the first place — in part one — is that the lifeguards are too busy having sex to notice. That’s why he’s pissed about sex throughout.
    “the movies tend to think of John Kramer as some kind of infallible moral compass.”
    Total misread of the movies. The only people who actually survive his traps, far from being improved, end up being the worst people imaginable, and do the opposite of living improved lives. The entire dilemma of part 3 for him is the realization that no-one has actually been improved by his work, in spite of his hopes.
    Anyway, just saw GAMER. Everything I’d hoped.

  72. Stella's Boy says:

    Is it possible one can read a little too much into the Saw movies and John Kramer? He spouts off a lot of dime-store philosophy, sure, but overall they’re obnoxiously loud, moronically stupid gore-fests. There’s nothing deep about a Saw movie. “Live or die, make your choice!”

  73. If Shia LaBeouf ever showed up at a party I was at I don’t think I’d be able to think about much other than, oh yes, the cocks-office. Because, ya know, Oim gaiye.
    At least, physically, Lex got me correct.

  74. don lewis (was PetalumaFilms) says:

    If I did have an idea for a bum fights kind of thing, I would have shot it years ago before those 2 dudes make a zillion bucks off it.
    As for Lex and this little video:
    I do not know other peoples’ personal emails, but since I have yours, I’m serving notice that it is IRRESPONSIBLE and near-slanderous to be in *any way* making these offensive leaps you’re posting on Poland’s blog.
    I am telling you to cease and desist immediately, and/or offer a public apology all over Poland’s blog. I will definitely be contacting Poland over it. This is not a laughing matter and not remotely something that needs to be floating out there. It is extremely unfair and potentially damaging to my status that you’d even joke about such a heinous thing.
    (inside joke…hee hee hah hah!)

  75. Chucky in Jersey says:

    Speaking of “such a heinous thing” there have been bright spots in this money-driven movie season.
    Every picture promoted with “Academy Award Winner”, “Academy Award Nominee” or any variation of same has flopped!
    Also, most every movie promoted with name-checking stiffed. (“The Hangover” was the lone exception).
    Take away the comic book/franchise/game-based/remake/sequel/TV-based titles and there was some quality, though not a whole lot.
    As a final summer treat, my part of New Jersey gets “The September Issue” ahead of the national release. That should be a good trade-off for local megaplexes missing out on “Adam”.

  76. mutinyco says:

    Figured this was appropriate for the direction this thread has taken…
    Marcus Licinius Crassus: Do you eat oysters?
    Antoninus: When I have them, master.
    Marcus Licinius Crassus: Do you eat snails?
    Antoninus: No, master.
    Marcus Licinius Crassus: Do you consider the eating of oysters to be moral and the eating of snails to be immoral?
    Antoninus: No, master.
    Marcus Licinius Crassus: Of course not. It is all a matter of taste, isn’t it?
    Antoninus: Yes, master.
    Marcus Licinius Crassus: And taste is not the same as appetite, and therefore not a question of morals.
    Antoninus: It could be argued so, master.
    Marcus Licinius Crassus: My robe, Antoninus. My taste includes both snails and oysters.

  77. jeffmcm says:

    Chucky, you’re an idiot.
    LYT, I’m not misreading either the Friday the 13th series or the Saw series. In fact, your comment “The entire dilemma of part 3 for him is the realization that no-one has actually been improved by his work, in spite of his hopes” supports what I’m saying. And most of the people Jason kills are not, in fact, having sex. The series is interested in seeing people getting killed for no particular reason, not moralizing.
    Of course, as Stella says, it’s all somewhat moot because of how terribly-written, -directed, and -acted the series is.

  78. Chucky in Jersey says:

    I’m not an idiot, I only offer common sense.
    At least I’m not a circle jerk in Cali who’s trying to avoid the Station Fire.

  79. scooterzz says:

    after that last remark, ‘idiot’ would be a compliment…..

  80. yancyskancy says:

    Stella’s: Beyond a Reasonable Doubt is a remake of Fritz Lang’s film, one of his rather austere late works. It has a fantastic plot twist that knocked me out on first viewing – not sure if the remake is true to it.

  81. LYT says:

    “In fact, your comment “The entire dilemma of part 3 for him is the realization that no-one has actually been improved by his work, in spite of his hopes” supports what I’m saying.”
    I don’t see how. You’ve said the series supports his view of morality. Part 3 is his realization that his morality so far hasn’t worked, despite expectations. So he doubles down, and that doesn’t work either. I fail to see, therefore, how his morality represents that of the filmmakers. Unless you assume that the filmmakers’ morality is so flimsy that they think the real world could defeat it.

  82. LYT says:

    “Of course, as Stella says, it’s all somewhat moot because of how terribly-written, -directed, and -acted the series is.”
    If you think Tobin Bell’s performance is bad, then you are as close to objectively wrong as I can imagine.

  83. jeffmcm says:

    Tobin Bell is the lone exception in the four movies that I could get through.

  84. LYT says:

    Even I won’t advocate that you bother with part 5.

  85. LexG says:

    SAW. BOW.
    Better than Star Wars, LOTR or NOES.
    SAW: 4 stars (out of 4)
    SAW II: 5 stars (out of 4)
    SAW III: 10 stars (out of 4)
    SAW IV: 4 stars
    SAW V: 3.5 stars.
    SAW VI TRAILER I saw before GAMER: 3 stars.

  86. LexG says:

    Apologies to Glenn Kenny and Luke Y. Thompson, who are wonderful critics, but apparently no Jeff Wells, whose cartoon caricature got me *1,700* more hits than you guys, plus a HUFFPO mention.
    Now how come I can’t get a fucking agent for my animations?

  87. IOIOIOI says:

    I had no idea schtickcoma could last this long.

  88. Stella's Boy says:

    Close to objectively wrong as you can imagine? I don’t know about that LYT. I could say the same thing about someone who thinks the first three Saw movies are actually good. Bell is OK but he does seem like a John Doe wannabe to me and I find it hard to get past his absolutely atrocious dialogue. Everything he says is so pseudo-philosophical. Compared to the rest of the acting in the series though, he might as well be Brando in his prime.

  89. LYT says:

    “Everything he says is so pseudo-philosophical.”
    Exactly what it’s supposed to be.

  90. LexG says:


  91. LexG says:

    Why is this town SO FUCKING IMPOSSIBLE?
    If I don’t land an ACTING GIG or a SAG CARD in the next FIVE DAYS I will FUCKING COMMIT SUICIDE.
    Thanks, SAG, for making entree harder than a fucking trip to the moon, and big tip of the hat, EVERY MANAGER AND AGENT IN LA, for NEVER OPENING LETTERS OF INQUIRY OR HEADSHOTS.

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