Saturday, January 29, 2011

Cinema-phobia

Thanks to J, and some truly terrible scripting, I may have developed a new irrational fear. (the list grows- clowns, olives, cockroaches, Paranormal Activity becoming my life...)

Yes, the fear of movie cinemas. Naturally, they aren't the friendliest of places anyway- you pay $18 for a ticket, (or $15.50 if you're a student. Who cares about half priced bus tickets when you can save 14% at the movies? Bargain) $6 on a frozen coke, $4.50 on an ice cream, and that's before you even find out if the movie isn't worth a brass razoo! (A saying I've never used and hope never to repeat again)

Throw into that mix a truly traumatic experience, and well, you're screwed. Wait for the DVD release. For the rest of your life.

Let's rewind and tell the story from the beginning (the very best place to start...). On Friday, J texted me and asked if I would like to go see a movie with him and another friend of ours. The movie? True Grit. It's a western, he tells me, but looks good. Yeah, already I was feeling dubious. "Western" and "good" don't usually go together. I did mention on a previous post that I would be seeing it, and as I said then, I thought maybe it would be a laugh if nothing else. Too right, it was!

I roped another friend into the experience. I didn't want to be sitting there, hating on the movie if the boys were enjoying it. When we got to the cinema (Top Ryde- what's that? We have our own cinema now, and don't have to go to North Ryde? Suck it bitches, I can walk there) which doesn't have an abundance of sessions, I saw not one, but about three movies that I would rather see. It was then that I felt The Fear. It is a truth universally acknowledge, that for every decent film, there is a hair-tearing-ly bad one. And True Grit had Black Swan and Green Hornet (um Seth Rogen. It can't possibly be bad!) to be compared against. It did not bode well.

Kasey had such a feeling of impending doom that she considered turning around from the ticket counter and walking home, then and there. Attempts to suggest a different film went pretty much ignored. We bought our tickets. And our frozen cokes. And our ice creams. And in we went.

SPOILER ALERT: If you plan on seeing True Grit and don't want the terrible plot of this unbearably bad movie ruined, stop reading. If you are sane, continue.
From the word go, the movie was bad. For one thing, there was a lot of unnecessary dialogue, and I spent the first half hour or so wondering when something would actually happen. The main character is a 14 year old girl, Mattie, whose father has just been shot dead by a man he was trying to help. She vows to avenge his death, one way or another. Sounds interesting? It's not. Half of the characters I could barely understand. Honestly, I had to lip read more than listen, it was ridiculous. And really, I needn't have bothered because 90% of the dialogue was a complete joke.

Now if there's one thing I dislike in a movie, it's Matt Damon. Seriously, can't stand even looking at his face, it makes me angry. And of course, who's in True Grit? Maaaaaatt Daaaamon. Eventually, the movie reaches its climax. Just at the point when they've given up their man hunt and decided to turn home, they encounter the very person they're trying to catch by complete chance. Of course, Mattie is alone when this happens, fetching water from a river. She shoots, and hits his shoulder, the recoil sending her back into the river. She is captured. Despite the fact her target is with a group of 4 other men (one of which only makes animal noises, no idea how that aided the plot) the others ride off and leave her alone with him, making him promise not to kill her. Fool proof!

Then it goes something like this: Bad guy tries to choke good girl. Good guy (Maaaaatt Daaaamon) appears just in time to knock bad guy out with butt of shotgun. Other good guy confronts other four bad guys alone, kills three and ends up on the ground, pinned by his (accidentally shot dead) horse with the fourth pointing his gun at him. First good guy shoots bad guy dead from up on a cliff, "450 yards" away. Bad guy regains consciousness and knocks out good guy on cliff with a rock. Good girl and bad guy get into scuffle. Good girl shoots bad guy in the chest (hoorah she did it!) then falls down unfortunately placed pit behind her (oh woops!). Good girl stuck in pit. Good girl finds dead body with a knife attached to his belt. Good girl pulls body towards her, so she can use the knife to cut her foot free from the tree root that is obviously got caught in. Good girl rips shirt of dead body to find snakes sleeping in his otherwise empty ribcage. Snakes stir. Good girl pushes dead body away from self. Snakes don't like this. Snakes slither out of rib cage, towards her, because everyone knows snakes are aggressive and attack people who aren't an immediate threat instead of fearfully slithering off. Good guy (not Matt Damon) appears at top of pit. Throws down rope, climbs down. Good girl gets bitten on hand. Good guy shoots snakes and sucks the poison (because we all know that works, right?) Good guy and good girl climb aboard her horse, Little Blackie, and ride for help. Little Blackie collapses from exhaustion. Good guy shoots Little Blackie and continues on foot, good girl in arms. He collapses on approach to a house, and fires a shot into the air, to get their attention.

Then BAM it's 25 years later. We see Mattie on a train, missing one arm. She is on her way to visit one of the good guys (not Matt Damon, thank God). She arrives to find out he died three days before. She tells the audience, via an inner monologue, that she had his body moved to her family's cemetery plot. She then tells us she doesn't know of what happened to the other good guy. Movie ends here.

Yes. Really. How's that for a denouement? Thrilling.

There are a few plots points in the earlier stages that really irk me. Such as the appearance of some big grisly man on a horse wearing a bear skin coat, including a bears head hood (it honestly looks like a bear riding a horse. I may have rubbed my eyes in astonishment) who tells them he's a dentist. His plot-essential lines include "does either of you require meeehhdical asssiiiiiistayance?" and, when asked if he knew of nearby shelter "I got my beeeaaaaarr skiiin." Yupp. Enriching.

Aside from this, for reasons completely unknown, people make a point of telling Mattie she's ugly. Which she isn't, and it's only ever gruesome looking people who say it to her. Matt Damon, I mean you.
And, most angering of all, there's a lot of horses getting shot or stabbed or force to swim across rivers or exerted to the point of death. This really annoys me, i don't like seeing animals get hurt in movies. Especially when there's at least 3 feet between the chest of the man you're trying to kill, and the chest of the horse he's riding- so you really shouldn't misfire so that you kill the wrong animal. I mean, let's face it, it isn't easy to shoot a horse dead, unless you've got the gun to their temple.
The worst is, it's a remake. the original was released in 1969. If the 2010 version is so bad, what was its predecessor like? And what on earth possessed them to do it again?

Anyway, J defended himself by telling us that the trailer made it look good. Which goes without saying because they're trying to convince people to pay to see it, they're not going to show you how laughably bad it is, are they? So here it is, and may I recommend if you're thinking of seeing it- don't.

*About 2min in you'll see what truly looks like a bear riding a horse. Ridic.

-m xx

3 comments:

  1. First of all, I haven't seen True Grit (2010) so I can't say whether it's a good movie, but the movie received positive reviews in America and was even noted as the best Western film since Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven. You already mentioned from the beginning that you don't believe "westerns" and "good" go together. I like westerns myself. Sergio Leone's are the best ever. I've seen the original True Grit with John Wayne and it's a good classic. You forgot to note your movie spoilers, by the way, though it sounds like the exact same story except for the 'years later' part. Matt Damon's character gets shot and dies during the final scenes in the original and the girl Mattie doesn't lose an arm. Anyway, I'll wait to rent it and let ya know if I liked it. Westerns rock and Jeff Bridges may be up for an Oscar for it. And DAMN movies are expensive where you live! Could you elaborate more on your supposed 'fear'? You kind of lost focus on that part. Good blog post, glad to see you writing again.

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  2. haha, I figured as much, but then again you could be odd like that. Anyway, I still feel that your opinion could be pretty biased if you don't like any Westerns at all. :P

    Have you seen The Good, The Bad and The Ugly? It's one of my favorite movies. It was filmed in Italy and directed by Sergio Leone. The memorable soundtrack was composed by Ennio Morricone who is an acclaimed composer.

    Clint Eastwood is one of my favorite actors and he is just too damn cool in it. It's part of a trilogy, but each movie in the trilogy stands well on its own as the events in either are never mentioned. It's kind of funny because the movie is dubbed. No matter what language you watch it in, it's dubbed over. This is because the actors were a mix of foreigners, so they all spoke their native language during filming. Check it out if you've never seen it. If you hate that one then your opinion sucks LOL.

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  3. Haha, Hidalgo does not count at all LOL. I love Hidalgo though. I will get back to you in a few months or so when it finally comes out on blu-ray and I'll see if it sucks. :)

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