THE METAMUCILS

19 Aug

 1. The Expendables 2/LGF                            Wknd/$   28.8           Total/$  28.8

 2. The Bourne Legacy/Universal                 Wknd/$   17.0            Total/$  69.6

 3. ParaNorman/Focus                                    Wknd/$   14.0            Total/$  14.0

 4. The Campaign/Warners                            Wknd/$   13.4            Total/$  51.7

 5. Sparkle/TriStar                                            Wknd/$   12.0            Total/$  12.0

 6. The Dark Knight Rises/Warners              Wknd/$   11.1             Total/$ 409.9

 7. The Odd Life of Timothy Green                Wknd/$   10.9            Total/$   15.2

 8. Hope Springs/Sony                                     Wknd/$     9.1             Total/$   35.1

 9. Diary of a Wimpy Kid 3/Fox                      Wknd/$     3.9            Total/$   38.8

 10. Total Recall/Sony                                       Wknd/$     3.5            Total/$   51.8

 

SURPRISED THERE’S NO PRODUCT PLACE FROM VIAGRA

The Expendables 2 opens at number one and it’s pretty much impossible to get mad at a film this stupid as it clearly embraces its own stupidity and silliness.  I mean, you can’t get much campier without men being in drag.  The entrance of Chuck Norris is the stuff of instant legend.  It’s so over the top it’s practically a parody of Chuck Norris.  And it doesn’t stop there as he appears to the sounds of “The Good The Bad & The Ugly” along with jokes about how he’s been a “Lone Wolf” at times.  In fact, in a movie with Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger you hear “I’ll back” “You’ll be terminated” ‘Who’s next? Rambo?” and “Yippie Ki Yay.”  And that’s in addition to jokes about Dolph Lundgren’s character going to MIT and having a Fulbright scholarship.  See, it’s funny because Dolph Lundgren did go to MIT on Fulbright scholarship.  The problem with this film is that there are simply too other many scenes where they clearly aren’t in on the joke and still think they represent bad-ass action heroes, not the least of which is when Stallone says to villain Jean Claude Van Damme in the showdown, “I’ll man you up” AS HE UNDOES HIS BELT!  For a second I thought they’d screwed up the reels and put on some gay porn.  Also there’s nonstop use of the type of filter once reserved for “actresses of a certain age.”  Well, it’s not just for girls any more. Now you need it to prop up the egos of men like Stallone, who unlike his co-stars, stopped being an A-lister about a decade back.  It’s so intense the film looks out of focus at times.  In addition, from his “badass” chopper, to his oddly-looking and strangely still jet-black hair, to the hot younger Asian chick who wants him, Stallone has made this film so male-menopausal they may need a new word for it. Hell, we should just use his name.  “You hear about Bob?  Left his wife for a young girl, bought a sports car, wearing as toupe…he’s gone full on Stallone.”  Oddly, only Van Damme (who along with Norris turned down the first film) acquits himself well. He started off as a movie villain against Sho Kosugi (and why the hell isn’t he here) and coming full circle has become very good at it.

 

BEHIND EVERY INVINCIBLE ACTION HERO IS A WOMAN WITH A DOCTORATE

The Bourne Legacy is down to number two and also in this is Rachel Weisz who is no stranger to the female scientist lead in an action movie, going back to Chain Reaction with Keanu Reeves and the two Mummy films.  Here she’s one of the scientists who helped make the super-soldiers and it does them credit that they remembered what made Bourne appealing was that despite all his skills he still needed someone to help him. That he was somewhat scared and confused.  Here we learn that Aaron Cross in fact lacked the IQ to join the army and the recruiter fudged his application to make a quota. He needs what she does because he’ll lose the intelligence he’s gained.  This humanizes him because it adds a level of understandable fear and desperation to what he does. Also like Bourne, when the time comes he tells her to leave and she chooses to stay with him, though there’s no hint of romance until the very end of the film which might as well have “To Be Continued…” pop up on the screen.

 

REASON #93847 WHY MARKETING DEGREES ARE A JOKE

Para Norman opens at number three and why in the world is this being released two months before Halloween? It’s the second-most profitable holiday behind Christmas, so why you releasing this in the dog days of summer where it’s opening a weak third as opposed to October 26th, where it could have cleaned up?  It doesn’t take a genius to figure this out.  I’m mildly interested in this if for no other reason fucking Tim Burton isn’t involved.  Again, something to watch on cable in a year.

 

MIGHT, COULD DIRECT TRAFFIC ON A ONE WAY STREET

The Campaign is down to number four and another reason to never see this movie is its director, Jay Roach, the man behind Meet The Parents and the horrible sequels as well as every Austin Powers movie.  Yeah, exactly. He makes comedy for morons.

 

NOTHING I WANT TO FEEL

Sparkle opens at number five and if you’re black and especially if you’re black and of a certain age, you know all about Sparkle, a fictional account of a Supremes-type girl group from the 70’s starring Irene Cara.  If you didn’t see it, then your mom and dad had it on VHS (it only came out on DVD when Dreamgirls was released).  Either way it was part of your life, especially the music from none other than Curtis Mayfield and sung by Aretha Franklin (En Vogue’s hit “Giving Him Something He Can Feel” was a remake of one of those songs).  It’s a very, very black experience.  When R. Kelly showed up with a singer who went by the name “Sparkle” every black person in America got the reference.  That said Mike Epps is in this remake so I will never fucking see it. Ever.  Cannot stand Mike Epps.   It doesn’t matter how good or bad the film is, he makes it worse. He’s either the biggest turd in a pile of shit or he’s a piece of shit someone dropped onto your otherwise nice cake.  There’s a lot of sadness already attached to this film with it being Whitney Houston’s last, but his presence is insult to injury. Yes, I really hate him.

 

I COULD BLAME ELEKTRA, BUT IT’S REALLY JUST YOU.

The Dark Knight Rises is down to number six, followed by The Odd Life of Timothy Green opening at number seven and in this is Jennifer Garner and her presence here means that she’s pretty much given up.  Like Vin Diesel and The Rock before her, after a number of flops she’s turned to family films (this is from Disney no less).  Honestly, she should have stayed with TV.  She was never a big screen star and at best she’s just a prettier Hilary Swank who isn’t exactly lighting up the box office either.  For Joel Edgerton this is covering his bases, as Warrior and the prequel to The Thing both disappointed.  He’s actually Tom Buchanan in the upcoming Great Gatsby from Baz Lurhman (always giving his Australian countrymen work) and given that’s been pushed back from Oscar-baiting December to next year, things do not look good for him either.

 

TIG OLE BITTYS!

Hope Springs is down to number eight and also in this is Mimi Rogers who is Tommy Lee Jones’s sexual fantasy neighbor.  I guess because she’s got ginormous boobs.  Seriously.  And isn’t afraid to show them as half-a-dozen movies will prove.  But what she will inevitably be most famous for is being briefly married to crazy-ass Tom Cruise in the 80’s…when he also dated Cher, indicating a clear “mommy period.”

 

HERE COMES UNDERWORLD 5…

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days is down to number nine, followed by Total Recall wrapping up the top ten at number ten and given this movie tried to leave behind so much of the first film, why the hell is there a three-breasted hooker?  She was a mutant in the first, but since there’s no Mars, where’d she come from?  It’s a fun flourish in a movie that clearly doesn’t want to have any fun.  So many, many mistakes… but the upside is maybe people will stop giving Len Wiseman money.  It’s only made $51M domestic and another $58M overseas.  Too bad the budget was $125M, meaning it’d need $375M to be a clear hit and $250M just to break even.

 

DANCING QUEEN

I’ve come late to the table on Bunheads, but I enjoy it.  Big city person in small, strange town has worked since The Egg & I and isn’t stopping now, least of all in this show about a once promising dancer now a Vegas showgirl who accepts a marriage proposal drunk and winds up in small town, where her mother-in-law just happens to run a dance studio for the town’s young people.  I never watched Gilmore Girls but I’m aware that loquacious women in a quirky small town are part of the Amy Sherman Palladino formula and she continues to follow (it even includes a young ballet dancer who looks just like Alexis Bledel).  Granted, it can seriously be grating at times and the forced eccentricies of the townspeople really annoys others, but for the most part I find it fun and I’m big on fun TV these days.  Also, I like the fact that while, Laura Graham was far from ugly, the female lead here also isn’t some beauty queen.  It makes her more human and relatable.  I mean as relatable as tall, thin Tony-nominated Broadway performer Sutton Foster can be.  What’s great is that I get to watch the entire summer season in on fell swoop because I’m so behind.

 

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