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Love Bending Eclipses Last Twilight

This week offers a funny set of firework options.  There’s the 3D special-effect-laced kung-fu sort, the supernatural kissing kind, and the brothel biopic explosion-of-the-pants variety.  So, regardless of whether you prefer entertainment for your eyes, your heart, or your crotch, this weekend has something for you.  First up, the critics employ word-fu against M. Night’s The Last Airbender (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).

“Where to start with this one? How about this: If any movie ever warranted a class-action lawsuit against the filmmakers, it’s The Last Airbender.” Keith Phipps AV Club

Considering a class-action lawsuit is a collective lawsuit brought by a large group of people (like all people who paid to see it), the movie must be toxic for your eyes to deserve a lethal dose of legal venom.

“Let’s just be honest: M. Night Shyamalan is an idiot.” Matt Pais Metromix.com

Lucky for him (and many Wall Street and oil execs) being an idiot isn’t against the law.

“The Last Airbender is an agonizing experience in every category I can think of and others still waiting to be invented.” Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times

It’s so bad that current forms of language and communication are limited in explaining its badness.

The best way to fake success is to not measure anything else.

“The picture drags along the ground like a fresh corpse, treating its own myth as homework and the participants as burdens, while feeling around a fantastically wasted world of weathered environments and ornate set design.” Brian Orndorf BrianOrndorf.com

The movie progresses with the speed and momentum of a corpse?  So, notsomuch.  At least the movie is in 3D, so the corpse looks real and lifelike.

“Even in 3D, [it’s] one-dimensional.” Jason Zingale Bullz-Eye.com

In cases of bad 3D, the studio should refund audiences for two unused dimensions.  This class action premise is starting to come into focus.

“This colossal folly, the fiasco of the summer of 2010 — gives us all a ringside seat at the sight of Mr. “I See Dead People’s” career gurgling down the drain.” Roger Moore Orlando Sentinel

If watching the director fail is more entertaining than the movie, perhaps he should change his name to M. Night Schadenfreude.

“Who would have thought Shyamalan would come up with a movie that makes his Lady in the Water look positively sensible?” Christopher Kelly Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Probably not the executives who coughed up the $150 million budget.  However, poor critical reception doesn’t always correspond to financial performance, as demonstrated by the newest installment of the nigh-invulnerable franchise Twilight: Eclipse (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).

Most reviewers address the film in the context of the series, which means that “of the franchise’ will be a common expression.  The spectrum ranges from:

“This is definitely the worst installment of the franchise to date.” Noah Berlatsky Chicago Reader


“The first two movies were mediocre, but “Eclipse” represents one of the more astonishing upgrades in movie franchise history.” Richard Roeper Richard Roeper.com

Racist Transformers: An astonishing franchise downgrade

“The most troublesome blow is the archaic message of a girl who will abandon everything for a boy – friends, mother, father and even her soul. This is a character whose only identity is her boyfriend; Bella Swan sets women in film back fifty years.” Clay Cane BET.com

If she continues that trend for the series finale, she might rewind gender relationships all the way back to the birth of vampires.

“With the bigger story and more fully developed relationships than the previous films, this is the first Twilight film that feels like a real movie in its own right.” The Globe and Mail (Toronto) Liam Lacey

Seven hours of film, $500 million dollars profit, and a legion of screaming Twihards, and it’s finally a movie?  Congrats.

“Bella Swan, you two-timing Tessie!  Must every great love story take the shape of a triangle?  Couldn’t we get a rectangle or a trapezoid?”  Clint O’Conner Cleveland Plain Dealer

A better geometric expression of Bella's cross-species PDA would be a Gömböc.

“‘Eclipse’ has a little more, uh, meat than the previous offerings in the ‘Twilight’ series.” Linda Cook Quad City Times (Davenport, IA)

And if you like, uh, meat euphemisms, perhaps you should head over to the Love Ranch (Rotten TomatoesMetacritic).

“A tawdry look at the early days of Nevada’s legalized brothel business that plays more like Lifetime fodder than the Martin Scorsese pictures that serve as its model.” Variety Peter Debruge

In case you wanted to know what it would look like to have a mob thriller made by the Oxygen network.

“What happens when the worst tendencies of a poor screenplay are exaggerated by labored and unimaginative direction?” Andrew Schenker Slant Magazine

Answer: The producers assume that storytelling and entertainment are less important than showcasing a few great actors.

“Just another tawdry soap opera, tarted up with bigger names in hopes of lending it unearned legitimacy.” Marshall Fine Hollywood & Fine

To be fair, the film’s stars earned it a place in this roundup.

“There’s no flash, no sizzle, no surprise. Just beefcake and cheesecake, served on a plastic plate.” Stephen Whitty Newark Star-Ledger

Who knew beef and desert belonged together?

“The kind of unabashed embarrassment that should send people to their attorneys to see if there’s any legal way to get it removed from their pages on IMDB, Wikipedia, and the like.” Brian Tallerico Movie Retriever

Another movie that inspires people to call their lawyer?  Thankfully, there isn’t a precedent for suing movies out of existence…that I know of.

“Mirren maintains her class throughout Love Ranch. She may deserve another Oscar just for keeping a straight face while reciting a ridiculous speech about the Donner Pass tragedy on her way to a tryst with her character’s lover.” New York Post Lou Lumenick

King Sheep hopes you don't keep a straight face when reading these roundups.

5 Responses

  1. I feel a little bad for Shyamalan. Not so long ago, the critics were praising him for “The Sixth Sense,” but now he’s an idiot. How far he has fallen!

  2. I love Shyamalan’s graph on Rotten Tomatoes:

  3. M. Night Schadenfreude — it is now so.

    Given that he showed with his second film just how little talent he possesses, I’m surprised he even made it this far.

    And what kind of career choices is Helen Mirren making. Starring opposite Joe Pesci, in 2010? WTF?

  4. Poor M. Night Schadenfreude. Er, I mean, ha ha!

  5. the movie franchises are becoming more and more gimmicky

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