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The Ocean Movie Back-up Losers

There is no lower rung on the character ladder than the back-up loser.  A loser can be credited with being the best at losing, but the role of loser’s first alternate could only be occupied by someone with zero self-worth.  Imagine a race between tricked-out human-sized matchbox cars, like that furiously fast fucker franchise.  The starting gun fires and a blur of neon zips away faster than your eyes can follow.  One car spins out, scatters the crowd, and proceeds to grind gears until a vital piece of the engine drops to the pavement with a thud.  If something happens to this driver, the back up loser takes their place, and all the glory that entails.  That sucks.  For those sad substitute scum, I hope they have charitable and accepting friends and not of a bunch of Losers (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).

“[A] wickedly wonderful little smashup of fluff… [L]ike some lost 80s action comedy TV series fallen through a wormhole, which I mean in the best possible way…” MaryAnn Johanson Flick Filosopher

Fluffy time-traveling 80’s action sounds intriguing.  Time Rider came to mind.

“A nasty, vicious film alight in the casual sadism and blatant misogyny fantasies that are seemingly explicit in contemporary comic books and video games.” Emanuel Levy EmanuelLevy.Com

My collective social guilt for having too much in common with video games and comic books can only be expressed visually.

I try to appreciate art in all forms

“The Losers is the sort of pyro-heavy exercise parodied in “Tropic Thunder,” and no amount of production polish can hide the hollowness beneath its junk-food high.” Variety Peter Debruge

An inferior addition to a genre with so many clichés that entire spoof movies exist to mock them.

“The Losers is testimony to the power of movie stars because this cast offers eyegasmic distraction from the film’s own foolishness.” Armond White New York Press

This movie gave Armond an eyegasm.  I need to know what that is and what it looks like.

Eyegasm: When shit gets crazy

“The Losers does a perfectly serviceable job of achieving its low ambitions.” Bill Goodykoontz Arizona Republic

We’ll find out Monday if low ambitions result in high ticket sales, or perfectly serviceable profits.  In the meantime, now’s a good time to consider a Back-up Plan (Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic).

“This is the film to watch when pretty much everything else has been sold out and the only remaining choices are The Back-Up Plan and the latest Rob Schneider opus.” ReelViews James Berardinell

Wait, Rob Schneider was in an opus?

“On the plus side, Jennifer Lopez is the most appealing she’s been in quite some time in The Back-Up Plan. The negative side? Well, everything else about the film.” Brian Orndorf BrianOrndorf.com

This baby got back...to her roots.

“This artificially inhabited baby flick kind of works, most of the time. You simply can’t resist those cute dimples, cooing sounds and bright eyes following shiny objects. Yep, that Jennifer Lopez is a charmer.” Steve Persall St. Petersburg Times


Aside from comparing Lopez to an infant, which raises all kinds of scary questions about the ‘romantic’ side of this ROM COM, does the film have anything to offer those with Y-Chromosomes?

“Husbands, boyfriends, and first-daters are absolutely within their purview to flee in terror to the nearest Michael Bay explodathon when confronted with the grim news that The Back-up Plan is on this evening’s romantic menu.” Marc Savlov Austin Chronicle

Careful, that wording almost sounded like a dare.  To some guys, a woman who gets artificially pregnant before finding a boyfriend is scarier than giant robots and asteroids colliding with Earth.

“Please, ladies, stay away or movies like this will never stop.” Matt Pais Metromix.com

If you believe in reverse psychology, that is definitely a dare.  Besides, in the entertainment food chain, cheap simplistic romcoms fulfill a vital role (as something for critics to mock).  Everything from culture-shaking blockbusters to the mildly amusing movie blogs about them are part of the ecosystem – even cheap horror movies made for the price of a car.  And every once in a while, one of those Troma-quality slasher flicks ends up being famous for something, even if it’s only its impressive badness: Best Worst Movie (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).

“I never thought I’d be able to justify having seen the insanely bad Troll 2, but this scrappy documentary about fame and failure provides a perfectly charming excuse.” Brian Juergens CampBlood.org

A guy who writes for CampBlood.org needed an excuse to watch a bad movie?

“The debacle that was Troll 2 has given birth to Best Worst Movie, easily the most enjoyable documentary you’ll see all year.” Christian Toto What Would Toto Watch?

From the mulch comes the masterpiece; further evidence of the entertainment food chain.  Without Plan 9 From Outer Space, there would be no Ed Wood.  And without bad movies in general, there would never have been the glorious tradition of MST3K.  In this ecosystem, awesome badness is a survival instinct and resurrection is always a possibility.

“Even if fame is fleeting for guys like George Hardy, Best Worst Movie shows us that, like lightning, it might strike twice.” Norm Schrager Filmcritic.com

Lightning might strike George Hardy twice?  Shouldn’t someone tell him?  I doubt he reads this site.

“Though it’s a ramshackle piece of filmmaking, Best Worst Movie is an honest one, too, staying open to awkward, humbling moments while still making a solid case for the film’s immortal badness.” Scott Tobias AV Club

No one needs to argue the badness of this case

“For anyone who’s wanted to know how Troll 2 came to be and how the torment of its awfulness has hounded the cast and crew for two decades, “Best Worst Movie” is your documentary Xanadu.” Brian Orndorf BrianOrndorf.com

I don’t have my own personal Xanadu, but I suspect that great peace and beauty can be found with high-resolution cameras, waterproof subs, and a few unpolluted Oceans (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).

“Sublime. Astounding. Fantastic. I don’t think I can find enough superlatives to describe the incredible “Oceans,” the gorgeous Disney documentary released in celebration of Earth Day.” Linda Cook Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)

You left off opportunistic, duplicitous, and profitable.

“Océans is a jaw-dropper as a visual travelogue–even its anthropomorphic indulgences (an ocean floor is turned into a rough neighborhood, complete with trespassers and shy weirdos) are winning.” Village Voice Michelle Orange

It's not often we hear about winning weirdos

“There have, over the years, been a lot of terrific undersea documentaries, but if you want to know what distinguishes this new one, it comes down to a single word: technology.” Owen Gleiberman Entertainment Weekly

That review took its time getting to the payoff, which could be reduced to a single word: Rube-Goldbergian.

“You’re torn. Is this a work of nature pornography or consciousness raising? The movie thinks if it overwhelms us with the former, we won’t notice the relative absence of the latter.” Wesley Morris Boston Globe

It overwhelms the audience with pornography and doesn’t get a rise out of anyone?  That doesn’t sound right.

“Needs more information and more stunning images that speak for themselves, not another earnest monologue from Captain Obvious.” Matt Pais Metromix.com

King Sheep is not Captain Obvious

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4 Responses

  1. Hell, I’d rather see an explodathon than any recent rom-coms. I stand by my point that “When Harry Met Sally” has yet to be beaten in that genre.

  2. From the mulch comes the masterpiece; further evidence of the entertainment food chain. Without Plan 9 From Outer Space, there would no Ed Wood. And without bad movies in general, there would never have been the glorious tradition of MST3K. In this ecosystem, awesome badness is a survival instinct and resurrection is always a possibility.

    Well said, sir.

  3. Saying a romantic comedy stinks is like saying “I hate the Yankees”: no one will argue with you, even though they secretly wish they played for the Yankees.

    Romantic comedies are the easy target for plastic-faced critics. I’m becoming bored of their “run away boys!” reviews. Generally, they are no less mindless and silly than nearly every single explodathon. And on occasion (read: Knocked Up), the rom-com inner-pant explodathon is better than what the other genres are producing.

  4. Nice color scheme, Sheeps!

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