Last Saturday night started out like many before it.
I left the house with just enough time to make it to the theater, buy my ticket, navigate the lobby and find a seat just as the previews were about to start.
Not too many people will go to the movies alone. I've read that the number is something less than five percent.
Why is that?
By now, I'm pretty comfortable going to the movies by myself. When I'm alone, I feel no temptation to buy overpriced popcorn or sodas. I have no problem getting up and moving away from talkers or gum smackers. In fact, about the only thing inconvenient about going to the movies alone is you're not really able to leave your seat in the early stages of the film, else you might lose it.
But again, why do people have this thing about going to the movies alone? I still get those random thoughts in my head. I'm at the theater near my house enough to know the faces of everyone who works there. I'm fairly certain they know my face as well. They see it two or three times a weekend, every weekend.
What might they be thinking? I pay in cash, so they don't see a name. If they did, they might recognize it from reading Urban Tulsa. I'm just some random dude who goes to a lot of movies.
There are others like me. I remember them from when I worked at the movie theater. I'm not that unusual. I'm just part of the five percent.
Because I'm self-obsessed, I often imagine the workers are wondering who I am and why I'm almost always alone. That's actually an easy question to answer. Steph's using our 13-month-old daughter as an excuse to get out of seeing crappy movies. I don't blame her.
Hell, it saves me money.
Anyway, back to the story. Last Saturday night I waited for the late movie so I'd get to help put the girl to sleep. I hadn't wanted to go to the movies at all and certainly not to see Miss March, but after digging through my canvas movie bin, I could not locate a copy of The Class.
The Class opens this weekend at the Circle, but Amberla didn't send me a copy, so I'm blaming her for this whole ordeal. If I'd only had that screener, I'd have gotten to stay home Saturday night and watch my DVR'd copies of Battlestar.
I was embarrassed when I bought the ticket to Miss March. The film's premise is dumb. A kid, who's a virgin and about to have sex with his virgin girlfriend, falls down some stairs and ends up in a four-year coma. When he wakes up, he finds out his girlfriend is Playboy's Miss March. So he and his friend decide to drive cross country to crash the Playboy Mansion and win her back.
Sounds like a pretty lame attempt to film a Playboy Mansion party to me. So yeah, embarrassed.
Bought my ticket, kept my head down and trudged into the theater. Aside from myself, there were probably eight other people in the whole auditorium. I picked a spot about halfway up on an edge and parked it.
Then the film started. The first couple of minutes weren't bad. A couple of kids break into an older brother's closet to get his rookie Michael Jordan card and instead find a copy of Playboy.
Flash forward to high school and one of the boys, Tucker, (Trevor Moore) has become obsessed with sex. The other kid, Eugene (Zach Cregger), has become obsessed with abstinence. You know the rest of the story.
What I noticed from the opening minutes of the film is that neither of these guys can act. At all. Cregger isn't too bad. It's clear he's shooting for something like an American Pie performance, but he hits way low.
Moore is so awful it's unreal. He's about six or eight rungs lower than some of the bad acting in Clerks. And holy hell was it annoying.
But I sat there, waiting to laugh. It was supposed to be a comedy, right? The laughs were coming, weren't they? And if not laughs, at least there was the trip to the Playboy Mansion to keep you hanging on, right? A bit of gratuitous nudity?
As the minutes ticked by, I found myself becoming more and more annoyed and more and more antsy. I'd hear people laugh at a site gag and look around to find out who did it, like they were throwing ice at me or something. The experience was so not funny.
And then I had an epiphany: I didn't have to be there in the dark, alone on a late Saturday night with my wife and daughter at home sleeping peacefully. I didn't have to subject myself to what amounted to an extreme case of comedic negligence.
I gave it another five minutes, then said to hell with it, stood up and left.
I could not think of a single compelling reason to stay until the film's end. Not even the promise of the cheap titillation of the Playboy Mansion.
Congratulations, Miss March. You are now the fourth film I've ever walked out of.
How in the hell did this get made? Everything about it was bad. The acting. The writing. The direction. It looked like a crappy '80s coming of age comedy, and even the good '80s movies look pretty crappy by today's standards.
You know the worst part? The two leads? They were the writers and the directors. It's their first feature, but again, I gotta ask, how in the hell did this thing get made? Did someone's daddy fund the picture? And what kind of dirt did they have on the exec at the distribution company to get this pile of crap into theaters?
Ugh. I hope this flick does horribly so it's not a harbinger of even crappier films.
Miss March? No. Hell no. You'd be better off just dropping by your local convenience store and buying a copy of Playboy.
When I was a kid, Return to Witch Mountain was one of my favorite movies. Every time we'd have movie Friday at school, I'd hope it would be either Bedknobs and Broomsticks, Darby O'Gill and the Little People or Return to Witch Mountain.
What was not to like? It was about two little kids with magic powers -- telepathy and telekinesis -- trying to get back to Witch Mountain. About the only scene I can remember was one where they're in a room playing with every toy imaginable, and their making the toys move with their powers. Oh, and I remembered an RV.
After having sat through Race to Witch Mountain, I wiki'd the original so I could read the plot synopsis. The original involved two kids with magic powers trying to follow a map hidden on a purse. It had small town people thinking they were witches and trying to kill them.
I laughed. The synopsis sounded absurd. I wonder what I'd think of that movie as an adult. I know what I think of the reboot: meh.
Why does Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson make crappy movies? Does his agent not know the difference between a good script and a bad one? Does The Rock not know what kind of star he wants to be? I had hopes for the guy as an action/comedy star after The Rundown, but we haven't seen anything like that on his resume. Not anything good, anyway. Doom doesn't count, and neither does Walking Tall.
The guy has charisma and is a better actor than Schwarzenegger ever was, though that's not saying much. I just don't get it. I thought he'd be doing better by now. And by better, I don't mean Race to Witch Mountain.
I certainly didn't hate it enough to walk out; it's just not that good.
The premise is similar to the earlier film, but not the same, but then a remake is a remake, right?
Jack Bruno (Dwayne Johnson) is a cab driver in Vegas. He used to work for some bad people and has been in and out of the clink, but these days he's legit.
After roughing up some of the goons a mob guy sends after him, he picks up a strange fare -- two kids. He didn't see them get into his cab, but there they are. Before he knows it, they've stuffed a giant wad of cash into his hand and told him to take them into the desert. They have some longitude and latitude coordinates they have to get to.
He drives them for hours until they find this shack in the middle of nowhere. The kids overpay him and though he briefly entertains the notion of taking the money and leaving them, his conscience gets the better of him.
He ends up becoming the kids (though they're actually extraterrestrials) protector and vows to help them get back to their downed spaceship.
The actual plot works about as well as it sounds. They travel from place to place so as to have encounters with the villains of the piece. It's a Disney flick, so you can probably imagine how it ends.
I know it's a remake and all, but Disney didn't really put a whole lot of effort into the ordeal. Sure, The Rock can be funny. He's good at that. But that's literally all the film has going for it.
It's a completely unremarkable experience. I'll have forgotten it in days, remembering only when Disney crams all the DVD commercials for it down my throat.
I don't really recommend wasting your time and money, but... it doesn't suck as hard as Miss March, so it's got that going for it.
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