Monday, February 12, 2007

Escape from Clunkerville!!!

wow all these dudes look funny.....they're not, except for Carman Electra, I can forgive her anything after making one of the best comedy shows ever...Carman Electra's HyperMix...what? was that meant to be comedy?....

this guy was meant to be a kid in a Nacho Linbre spoof bit, but they replaced him with a stunt midget, at this stage in the movie it was unclear whether it was intentional or willful incompetence, it's a bit of both as it turns out.....

I must buy Hannibal Rising and Epic Movie on DVD when they come out. Not to watch, mind you, they would be kept in a lead-lined case and only used in emergencies: whenever people go "so you do film studies, huh? Do you just sit around all day watching movies?" Then I would whip out these two fuckers and make that person watch them both in a row so they feel the burn of actually keeping up with contemporary films. There have been previous rants on this.

Spoilers Ahead, but Epic Movie was totally spoiled before I got near it.

Where can one begin with Epic Movie? the only way I can deal with it is by reading other people's reviews of it, like in a psychological support group sense, reading the reviews are 100 times funnier that the film itself. Hey, I knew it would be bad, but it is nausatingly bad. The trailer is quite amusing, but you don't know going into it that you have already seen every ' funny' joke in the film by seeing the trailer.

If you've seen the trailer with a Superman clone getting shot in the eye, going 'ow my eye, you shot me in eye! why would you do that!' you have seen not only one of the few vaguely humourous bits in the movie you have seen the entire Superman spoof bit, that's it. The characters positioning on the poster has little relation to their screentime. I'm scared that Superhero! is still in production, with this and Scary Movie 5 on the cards.

This movie made me fondly remember Scary Movie 4, as if it was the best film ever. What that film had at least was endearing performers in Anna Farris and Craig Bierko parodies of overwrought films like War of the Worlds that were ripe for parody and a sense of some wider politcal and social world, Leslie Nielson's cry 'but i want to find out what happens about this duck!' when being told of intergalactic attack in a school class room an attempt at least at satire.

One of Epic Movie's fundamental problems is that it spoofs movies that already have strong comedic and lighthearted elements. The awful performances by these bargain basement looky-likeys throw into sharp relief the comedy acting skills of the likes of Johnny Depp and Frank Black etc. I fear whoever cast their Danel Craig-look-a-like doesn't know what Daniel Craig actually looks like. The very brief presence of a Borat-a-like towards the end just reminds you of how funny Borat was and how painful this is, also the Borat-a-like's appearance in the trailer has no relation to his appearance in the film itself.

My main geeky gripe is not only attempting to spoof movies with an inbuilt parodic postmodern elements but the wholesale ripping off of jokes. The worst offender is a Wolverine-clone (played and I kid you not by a character called 'Groovy') giving a character the 'finger' with his claw, shamelessly ripped off from X-Men itself, and a joke from Joss Whedon to boot. When a parody movie steals from the source of its parody you are in serious trouble. The lacklustre Samuel L. Jackson look-a-like repeats a line that's less funny that the original:

'get these goddamn snakes off this godddamn plane',

surely parodies should be more outrageous than the original film rather than more conservative. He then repeats/steals a great line from Dave Chappelle (Because!I'm Samual L. Jackson! that's the way I TALK!) . Another aspect is no attempt to think of the global market, there are a few Harold and Kumar go to White Castle jokes that make no sense in territories where it's called Harold and Kumar get the Munchies. Despite all this awfulness, honourable mentions have to go to Fred Willard, Jennifer Coolidge, Crispin Glover, Kevin McDonald, Jim Piddock, Hector Jimenez, Tony, look at that some of the most intelligent and hilarious comedy actors of this time period, and no laughs, where could the fault lie...
What's scary about this movie (beyond the sexism, racism, toilet humour etc., presuming you knew it would have that anyway) is that writer/director team Jason Friedberg and Adam Seltzer neither seem to like or even understand the films they parody. The makers of Blazing Saddles and Airplane! had a real love of movies and their conventions, and made films that call out to be rewatched for the sheer amount of visual and verbal gags they contain. The source movies they spoofed were so pofaced that they required parodies that had every pause crammed with jokes. Epic Movie is the antithesis of these films, its lack of jokes forces you to remember the jokes from the films it supposedly spoofs just so you don't top yourself during the movie.

p.s. put this on the DVD box....

Epic Movie's creators and ideal audience (and I doubt this exists) share not only an ignorance of contemporary movies but and utter contempt for them and those who watch them.


Tracker knacker said...

some of the scary movie films were funny. 1 and 2 i think. 4 was absolute cack. Classic sequel deterioration, think rocky 6, superman 4, star wars four, what there isn't a fourth one? exactly. Like yourself i would be caught by the superman parody and feel totally ripped of by a lack of any real satire/knocking of hollywood conventions too. American movie comedy should have more to offer

RP said...

Good review. Now I'll definitely stay the hell away from that movie. Won't even rent it on DVD!

I saw Hot Fuzz this past weekend. It was quite funny, entertaining, etc., but not as good as Shaun of the Dead. Hard to follow that. It was a great parody of American cop flics, though!