Sunday, August 9, 2009

if you can't say something nice....

The suspect: Funny People

The charge: Willful misrepresentation, self-awareness, pretentions of serious art, a huge slice of The Meaning Of Life As Art, yadda, yadda, yadda.

The scoop: All the critics seemed tickled pink and downright giddy over the promise in this flick. So, we rolled the dice. More than halfway through, I was reminded of a basic belief I have about film-making(and blogging?): the big difference between a truly good movie and a heroically bad one often depends on the vigor and enthusiasm with which the editor plies his/her trade.

A bad sign: unless we are actually watching a 'concert-style' film or musical, there really should not be a plethera of musical numbers featured in their entirety. This is especially true of Adam Sandler musical numbers that last 12 years.

We, also, pretty much know that if, after a powerful investment of time, we simply do not care about any of the characters-at all-we are not going to be feeling the love.

Another random thought: if you cast your partner/sig other in your film, are you contractually bound to expend long chunks of dialogue having other characters praise him/her? (You still have IT, still fit into your skinny jeans, are most gorgeous, funniest, most loyal, the only one who absolutely believed in me, made my life heaven on earth, etc). Well bleagh, says I.

What does it say about a movie, when the addition of globs of the funniest people in the US today could not carve an ounce of chuckletude out of this clunker? Aaand, instead, the high point of amusement for us was an off-hand cameo by Eminem!

We were outta there, after 92 minutes, once we started adding up the 'yes, buts' and the total nosed >1000, with the meter still running.

But all this is just one little, old opinion: mine. What's yours?

Lessons learned: There needs to be a new industry-standard quota of no more than 2 complete stand-up routines - and those, only to set up the core premise of the thing.

Grading Session:


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