Weekly Dose of Ridiculous: Nicole Kidman, Alf and More
‘The Paperboy,’ director Lee Daniels’ follow-up to ‘Precious’ (yes, based on the novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire), premiered this week at the Cannes film festival and garnered quite the divisive response. But the thing everyone wants to focus on is a scene in which 24 year old Zac Efron is stung by a jellyfish and subsequently peed on by Nicole Kidman’s character. Fact: if you’re stung by a jellyfish, urine can help soothe the pain from the sting. What’s more ridiculous than thinking about Nicole Kidman peeing on Zac Efron? Sites running sensational headlines as if this is just something Kidman — the actress, not her character — did that was really gross, and treating it as if it’s some monumentally shocking event. Who cares? It’s a scene in a movie, you guys. Grow up.
It’d be one thing for ‘G.I. Joe: Retaliation’ to get delayed a few months prior to its scheduled release. It’s another thing entirely for Paramount to delay the film just one month prior to release. The reasoning? Fearing that they won’t make enough at the international box office, the studio has decided to post-convert the film to 3D to boost sales. A Paramount exec explained, “Jim Cameron did all of ‘Titanic”s 3D in post – and look how well that movie turned out.” Yes, anonymous Paramount suit-wearer, Cameron did post-convert ‘Titanic’ to 3D — over 10 years after it was already a massive box office success. We’re not really sure we get your point here because we aren’t so much bewildered by your insistence to post-convert the film to 3D (seems par for the course these days), as we are your ridiculous decision to yank a film that’s already established marketing just a month prior to its scheduled theatrical release and push it back nine months. Just what are you guys gestating over there? You know just holding the movie back nine months doesn’t guarantee it’ll give birth to something, right? It’s a movie, not a woman.
Nostalgia is a duplicitous, fickle little jerk. Remember this thing you really loved but would probably (definitely) realize is horrible if you watched it now because your taste was so terrible when you were a kid? Nostalgia can be fun, capturing a time and a place in your life that you can occasionally remember through the prism of movies and TV you used to treasure. But nostalgia has a flip side. And that flip side is mired in greed, where big studio people want to prey on your fond memories and exploit them to make wads of cash. And you let them. You let them do this to you. ‘Alf’ creator Paul Fusco gets nostalgia, and so he’s pitching an ‘Alf’ movie to studios this week, hoping you haven’t had the time to revisit that show as an adult, lest you realize it was kind of bad. But you asked for this when you paid for the ‘Smurfs’ movie, and ‘G.I. Joe,’ and ‘Transformers.’ If this happens, you have yourselves to blame here.
Not content to simply complain about film critics to anyone who’ll listen, filmmaker Kevin Smith now has a movie review show that will premiere on Hulu in June. Smith’s show, ‘Spoilers,’ won’t exactly be reviewing movies — Smith says they’ll “revere them.” And though Smith has publicly griped about critics seeing films for free at press screenings and having the gall to dole out negative reviews when we should just be really grateful we got to see something for free, Smith himself will be paying for 50 fans to see a film on opening day. After, they’ll congregate and discuss the film in front of cameras, giving viewers opinions of regular, non-critic people. That’s all well and good, except for the tiny fact that these people will be fans of Smith’s and/or looking for a few minutes in front of the camera — indicating that these opinions won’t be too honest. Good luck with deconstructing modern film criticism, Kev. Really, let us know how that works out for you.