If it's crap ... We'll tell you
Palms to Heaven, friend, and welcome to another edition of Spill in D.C. Despite the hot weather reaching well into the 100s in the District, a crew of Spillios (Ewok Princess, Moxie, Ken-K and two of his friends, and myself) gathered last weekend to talk shit, discuss Cons, and other discussions that spurred out of the movie of the day: Cowboys and Aliens.
But let’s get to trailer trending first: Tower Heist showed us just how old Eddie Murphy’s starting to get, but at least this looks like something that could be funny instead of another Nutty Professor movie. Then the trailer for Battleship came on-screen. Right, all that needs to be said about that is get ready for Battleship The Movie: The Game to be marketed leading up to the release of the game.
So onto Cowboys & Aliens, or as it was called within our group: James Bond and Indiana Jones versus aliens. Though, to be fair, this movie felt like more of a western than a science fiction movie despite the presence of aliens and spaceships. So Daniel Craig plays a character named Jake Lonergan, who wakes up in the middle of nowhere with no memory of what just happened to him and some strange contraption on his left wrist. After entering a nearby town and getting patched up by the local preacher, Meacham (Clancy Brown), Lonergan, who still does not remember what previously happened, has been charged with a series of crimes, not the least of which is murder. However, upon his arrest, Colonel Dolarhyde (Harrison Ford) arrives after hearing that Lonergan put his wimp of a son, Percy Dolarhyde, in his place. But that evening, combines came and noone knew why…I mean, alien spaceships attacked the town. The device on Lonergan’s arm can kill them, so Bond, Indy and Ella Eye-Candy (Olivia Wilde), along with others, must rise up against the aliens as well as rescue the people from the town that have been kidnapped.
The first half of this movie creates a real western feel; at least as far as Hollywood westerns go. You have the stranger who comes into town out of nowhere, shows from his introduction to the townspeople that he knows how to kick ass and is not entirely focused on the female love interest of the movie (more on that later). Between Craig and Ford alone, the movie gives you a constant battle of the rugged, manly men. However, the movie has some funny lines of dialogue, such as, after Olivia Wilde’s character asks to join in the hunt for the aliens, the response is “A kid, a dog, why not a woman?” Sam Rockwell, when learning how to handle a gun, is told not to yank it. After all, it’s not his pecker (That would be more of a stroke, but I digress).
Though there are a few moments that are funny because of how ridiculous they come across: the sheriff’s son, Noah, is given a gun, but he has clearly never played Knifey-Spooney before because he takes every opportunity to not use it until it’s time for badass hero moment. The aliens in the film are on a quest for gold, because as we all know, American money and gold must be so useful in the galactic circuit. Also, this movie shows us, as other movies have before, what it takes to 100% distract a man from thinking straight.
On the Spill scale, Ewok, Moxie and myself give it a Rental. Ken-K gave it a Matinee. It is a fun movie, predictable, yes, but enjoyable to watch. However, is it just me, or do the tone and color of Jake’s flashbacks almost match those of an Animal Collective music video?
Anyway, the movie brought up several discussions. Daniel Craig is shirtless in a few scenes. Nowhere near as chiseled or built as Chris Hemsworth was in Thor, but hey, I’m not the female demographic, so I can’t be the judge. However, that’s all you get. Meanwhile, Olivia Wilde appears nude, but it’s shown from the back and before we can see anything, Craig covers her with a blanket. So we talked about nudity in films and how there’s apparently a severe lack of full frontal male nudity. Not that you can see women running around, breasts flopping and muff out for all to see in a lot of movies, either, but you might be more likely to see a topless, attractive woman than a fully nude man.
Sure, we offered counterpoints, such as Walk Hard, The Hangover II and Forgetting Sarah Marshall, but Jason Segal apparently isn’t the pinnacle of hotness for women. I say apparently because we did get several full frontal shots of Segal’s junk in Sarah Marshall with no complaints from women, but hey, it isn’t the only time Judd Apatow made that decision. Sure, you had movies like Porky’s where you have both full frontal male and female, but those were meant to be horny teenagers, not full grown men and women. Thor might have been a step in the right direction, but not enough.
Kim Catrall, in the classic "Lassie" scene from Porky's. No way you'd ever have a scene with a guy yelling out like that, but I doubt any woman is looking for that.
According to Ewok Princess, that fight scene in the tubes would have been better had Thor been fighting in oil, or if he jumped through a waterfall (and had his clothes ripped off, mind you) Also, from what we discussed, the only reason Daniel Craig wore such tight pants is because of a female producer who wanted to see him strut in tight pants. But remember, the man in question must be well sculpted. On an episode of Seinfeld, for example, George, Jerry and Elaine are discussing walking around naked, specifically George in front of his girlfriend. Elaine said that is not a good look for a man: “The female body is a work of art. The male body is utilitarian, it’s for getting around, like a Jeep. Chelsea Handler mentioned in one stand-up special that the balls are like the two annoying friends of the cock, and even worse, they come covered in hair. So clearly, full on male nudity must belong on the built gentleman.
No, please, ladies, don't look away all at once.
Oh, right- there were other conversations. We got around to sharing our experiences with Spill Dot Con, the Comic-Cons in Baltimore and California, and board game movies. Hell, we figured if they’re making a Battleship movie, why not do others? Connect Four? Robot Chicken already parodied Hungry, Hungry Hippos, but we could see a live action or animated film of four hippos…taking a bite out of crime, cue rimshot sound effect. I would like to see a Chutes and Ladders movie for how bad it would be, but it may just end up being five minutes. Anything super simplistic in any medium can be turned into a movie. Hell, the arcade game Asteroid has been turned into a movie several times.
We then moved onto the subject of time travel, and how some of us (Moxie!) demand a bit of logic in our science fiction. Sure, there has never been a truly believable manner of time travel executed on film, be it Lost (which, as we discussed, had a disappointing series finale if you’ve followed the show) or Dr. Who, but hey, if history has taught us anything, when you’re dealing with something as fictional as time travel, you’re gonna run into some serious shit. But on the topic of fiction, Ken-K shared his thoughts on the recent Thundercats reboot.
Swords stand for boners, as Thundercats is one giant S&M metaphor, more so than He-Man: Masters of the ‘It’s OK to be Gay Let’s Rejoice with the Boys’ Universe. If you think about it, he has a good point. Hell, just look to the intro of the show with Lion-O: “Thunder, Thunder, Thunder THUNDERCATS HOOO!!” When a problem comes along, whip out your tool, firmly grasp it in your hand, watch it grow and call out to the heavens as lightning strikes. Don't ask me. I've never been into Thundercats.
Oh, and this being Spill, let’s talk about bathrooms for a moment. We got around to discussing the preferences of jets versus sprinklers on bidets and whether you want a gentle spray or fire hose spraying your posterior. Best answer was just to find a Westernized commode and God forbid you’re a woman and have to contend with one of those holes in the ground and you’re wearing heels. For me, I’m just reminded of a restroom sign I saw that read: “Gentlemen, your aim will help. Stand closer; it’s shorter than you think. Ladies, please remain seated for the entire performance.” In other words, don’t go for a distance record or practice your hover and we’ll be cool. No one's interested in your 100% accuracy or your ability to float- don't do it because neither one of us wants to go into the blame game again...oh, who the hell am I kidding, of course we do.
And so ends another adventure of the Spill members in hot old D.C. The plan for next time is to see Piranha 3D (and maybe some full frontal female snatch, perhaps?), so tune in until next time. And as always, later days.