Monday, November 07, 2005

Your Favorite Movie Sucks

I have idiosyncratic taste in film, as anyone who's had to listen to me sing the praises of Nate & Hayes will attest. But ever so often, I appall someone not with my odd ideas of the good but with my failure to appreciate movies they think are great. A short and incomplete list of movies I can't stand:

Braveheart: Sappy love story, nasty torture, and pasty white behinds. Yelling "freeeedom" is not a deeply moving political statement. I prefer Rob Roy.

Life is Beautiful: Roberto Benigni's performance is a travesty, although the scene where he rides in on the painted horse is very well composed.

Forrest Gump: glorification of stupidity and Boomer nostalgia elevated to toxic levels. Ugh.

Notorious: I've tried to watch it twice, and both times it's bored me to sleep.

Grease: I hate almost all musicals, and 1970s musicals associated with John Travolta especially.

The Producers: this is not funny. I saw a theatrical production of it and that wasn't funny either. Well, maybe the sequence with the showgirls wearing giant sausage headdresses, but I don't think that's in the movie.

Magnolia: would have been great with half the characters. And if we had drawn and quartered Julianne Moore's character for being such an insufferable psycho hose beast.

Almost Famous: Cameron Crowe should not be allowed near a film set for the rest of his natural life. After the reviews for Elizabethtown, this may become a reality. Kate Hudson may be thought pretty by some, but she cannot act and looks like a space alien mated with a kewpie doll. The sole redeeming features in this movie are Frances McDormand, who is always good, and Philip Seymour Hoffman, who is a living god (when are the Clerksville theaters going to get Capote, blast it all?).

2001: I think you have to be on drugs to appreciate it in its entirety. I don't have ADD, but this movie makes me think I do.

Saving Private Ryan: I have enough residual Objectivist tendencies to find this movie's sense of life appalling. It forces the viewer to identify chiefly with a coward. It has the hobbit-like Matt Damon. The framing device is ham-handed in the extreme. And then there's Tom Hanks. I hate Tom Hanks. I did like Philadelphia, but that may only be because he died.

You are welcome to excoriate me or to add your own Two Minutes Movie Hate in the comments.

UPDATE: Thanks to Timothy Sandefur for the link. I never saw The English Patient, but I had an Elaine-like reaction to the book.

The comments section is yielding plenty of examples of terrible movies most people lionize: The Green Mile (awkwardly obvious Christian allegory), Sideways (although it does have a better depiction of explosive female violence than either volume of Kill Bill), and Shakespeare in Love (sorry, cd, but Joseph Fiennes has a gerbil's face and I can't stand Fishstick Paltrow as a romantic lead). SiL has some great supporting players, though, and I admit grudgingly that Springtime for Hitler can be a funny song.
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