What Is Going on in Hollywood These Days?
Something like 23 of the 25 top grossing films in the 2000s have been remakes. This summer alone has seen less than half of the movies — 95% of which have been utter shit — come from original ideas. Writers are lazy, development is a nightmare and movies like Cars 2 offer studios a cozy safety blanket that smells like hundreds of millions of dollars. We’ve heard the story a million times. In fact, if you’re interested, one of our very own writers tackled this exact subject a few weeks ago, and did a hell of a better job than I ever could.
Which is why I’m not here to talk about the Hollywood Summer of Prequels, Sequels and Sequels’ Sequels. No. What I want to do is dive a bit deeper into some of the issues that have been plaguing my typical summer movie bliss. Don’t be surprised if this rant jumps back and forth and ultimately becomes convoluted.
For those of you consistent readers out there — there are some of you…right? — you know just how excited I was for 2012′s film potential. I even wrote a top ten anticipated movies piece way back in the winter. Well, don’t I look like a big idiot. I’m still reserving hope for one or two of the upcoming Gosling movies, but we’ll see. Only God Forgives just got bumped back till 2013, along with half of my other picks. What we got instead was Total Recall. Not only that, but it stars Colin Farrell, the guy from Phone Booth, and Jessica Biel, the chick from Summer Catch. I was ready to forgive the summer season, though. Even though one of its best movies involved a vulgar teddy bear who sounded like Peter from Family Guy. That was because I was finally going to see what the fuss surrounding the Jewish Christmas was about when I planned on attending opening night of The Great Gatsby on December 25, 2012. Then it got bumped back to 2013.
One of two things has to be happening. Either every studio is determined to make this the year of the superhero as some sort of sick joke, like “look all you idiots — we can produce absolute crap and make more money while doing it!” Or, they’re simply refusing to put out quality movies as payback to the Academy for doing such a lousy job with their awards the past few years. My hope is it’s the latter. Because when one of the best reviewed movies in the past month is some grannie-porn romantic comedy with Meryl Streep (sorry, I do love you) and Tommy Lee Jones, I’m desperate for good answers.
While we’re kind of on the subject, let’s chat about The Dark Knight. First of all, I have never come to comprehend the hype surrounding these movies. I love Christopher Nolan too, but these movies kind of suck. Christian Bale is the most overrated actor in the business, and don’t you dare start quoting American Psycho on me. Read the damn book, then come back and talk to me. His batman voice, as passé as bitching about it has become, is impossible to take seriously. That gravelly bass is reserved for flat “sarge” characters in cheesy war movies. Not Batmans. The second film, as brilliant as Heath Ledger was, had more holes in its plot than the last two seasons of Lost. And the third. Oh yes, the grand finale. Talk about a nonsensical script. How the hell did Batman get back on the island? Did he use one of his secret tunnels I only know about from playing his video games? And those cops. When they got out of the sewers I’m pretty sure they rushed a complex full of armed thugs. I think they were armed, after all it was four hours into the movie by this point and it’s hard to keep track of who has guns and who doesn’t since lameass Batman only knocks people unconscious. Really, this last one is a pretty feeble excuse to hate a movie so many love. I just think the idea of creating a serious superhero movie is against nature.
Batman and Hollywood aren’t the only ones I’m mad at, though. Even the indie movies have sucked so far this year. I was shocked to see all the positive reviews for Moonrise Kingdom and I also made the horrid mistake of seeing Take this Waltz. I had to watch some loser girl cheat on Seth Rogan for the biggest hipster bitchboy ever put on screen. Not my cup of tea, but the movie did feature the song, “Video Killed the Radio Star.” The silver lining, I suppose.
2012 better pick itself up and start putting out some quality movies. I’m still going to go to the theaters if they don’t, but I’ll just feel a lot worse about myself for doing so.