Monday, August 17, 2009

Summer's winding down...

...but the heat wave's coming back! For some reason the news didn't seem to have much about massive numbers of heat-wave related deaths. See? The new administration's not all bad. Yeah, I know, I'm just trying to get lots of angry mobbers to flock to my site. Nope! This ain't where it's at... but I know a hot trend when I see one, and this Usain Bolt's got legs! Plus, that Michael Johnson guy's kinda plateau'd. I'm going to call it here and now: Stephen Colbert's going to claim Usain Bolt for the USA. I mean, it's right there in his name! USAin!
¶ Anyway, on to less pressing news. I gotta keep it short as my workload's picking up again. Or I'll keep it long but not do a second draft... Oh, it's an exciting new crop to be sure. Four debuts this week, and I've already got a new entry to add to my year-end round-up of one-weekers! A Perfect Getaway! No, I highly doubt it's coming back, as it didn't opt for the indie release strategy like (500) Days of Summer did. No, Twohy just had to hedge his bets and assume dumping it into 3000 theaters immediately would be the smart play. But don't worry. He bounces back better than even Michael Cimino. Having a high profile movie like A Perfect Getaway totally bomb at the box office is not going to slow down Mr. Twohy, no sir. Not this time, anyway.
But let's get back to this week's crop. At #1, kinduva shock to me, it's District 9. I think I played that video game once. And look! Why, it's rising through the IMDb Top 250 ranks faster than Memento! Must be the cast and crew voting for it. Hmmm. GI Joe holds the green zone strong at #2. And The Time Traveler's Wife finds an audience in third place. Well, you gotta hand it to that Jennifer Garner! She puts da butts in da seats.... it's not her? Oh, right. Rachel McAdams. Damn Canucks. Her interview on The Daily Show was kinda awkward. Guess she's not used to the whole talk show racquet.
At #4, it's Julie & Julia. Oh, I tell you, it's falling faster than one of those cakes that The Three Stooges make. Remember? They fill it up with gas like it's a tire and... ah, skip it. Now all the critics are just nitpicking this like crazy, like ants at a picnic. Oh, the Julia Child part of the movie was good, now if they could just cut out that whole Julie Powell part. Oh, Amy Adams is as capable an actress as any and her characters are USUALLY likable but... Where's the loyalty, guys? Where's the sense of civic pride? Can you curb your jealousy for just three seconds? Sure, this Julie Powell's annoying and grating and narcissistic... and she's as American as a ten pound helping of apple pie. I know, Colbert and Maher have used that one. Or they'll say, it's as American as a piece of apple pie inside a gallon drum of vanilla ice cream, on top of a pizza hamburger... YGTI. No, it fits right in to a long tradition of movie quests inspired by someone else, like Donnie Brasco clinging to the mob or the pupil in Apt Pupil or that kid in A Bronx Tale that ended up going to prison... Mentoring! In the computer age. Or maybe it's just that Julie Powell's nothing less than the female Hemingway: "...To catch a fish, to kill a bull, to chop up a big mountain of onions, to drop a chicken on the floor and pout about it, kicking the floor with your heels, to make love to a man... in short, to LIVE." Thank God for the Simpsons! If you take out the websites that don't reference that episode where Martin Prince does a Hemingway impression, you only get four sites that use that line.
And rounding out the top 5, those little rat bastards of the G-Force. Where's that trap?
As for the rest, oh, I just get so depressed. Contemplating the lower half of the list. Well, we got two debuts: the much advertised The Goods. It's the curse of Dave Chappelle: the director is Neal Brennan, Dave's old whitey writing partner. Apparently they're never going to work again, like, for ever and ever. Guys! If Eddie Murphy and John Landis can patch things up... well, maybe that's a little unfair to Landis. Meanwhile, Paramount Vantage is going to have to shut down for a while... a LONG while. I think they broke the bank on this one. As for Harry Potter... only five weeks on the top 10 so far? And ALREADY at #7? Oh... so depressing. The only thing close to that for me would have to be Saturday Night Live, as in, something I tried to watch as a kid growing up, going to school. I was just getting out of high school when The Simpsons started up. I can't imagine what it would be like to watch The Simpsons in the fourth grade, then watch it through high school. And maybe that's for the best. Same with Harry Potter. But there will be whole legions of kids out there who've grown up with the series, both physically and mentally. Why, they're already saying the first two were strictly for the young-uns. Well, shyeah! And they made the most money, too! Plus, kids have very small attention spans these days... what was I saying? Oh, right. Something called Ponyo debuts at #9. I think I smell a Best Animated Feature Oscar winner! Well, if Disney can't make a non-Pixar winner, they'll buy one, damn it. Over 'n out.

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