CAFFEINATED CLINT : SMELLS LIKE LEAN SPIRIT
So Marvel Studios have apparently offered man-of-the-moment Mickey Rourke $250 grand to play the villain in â€œIron Man 2â€.
Think having someone lay adhesive rope from your landing strip to your rear end is a joyous experience?
What about wrapping rope tightly around your skin so it grips your flesh?
Or maybe fancy having your testicles chained to the base of a trampoline whilst someone jumps on it?
Yeah? Well come on, down!
If youâ€™re a sadomasochist, youâ€™ll definitely want to check out Frank Millerâ€™s The Spirit! I promise you, youâ€™ll be in cant-walk-from-the-pain heaven!
The sad part? All of us couldâ€™ve potentially gotten off on this movie â€“ if only Lionsgate had hall the gonads to fire the director.
I interviewed Frank Miller a year or so back for â€œ300â€ â€“ which he, of course, wrote with his golden fuckinâ€™ pen â€“ and found him to be a smart, cluey and very interesting guy. Seemed like he was going to be the next big thing in movies. I pretty much welcomed anything heâ€™d get involved in from then on out.â€¦
â€¦.. and then I saw â€œThe Spiritâ€.
Still showing in about two or three theaters across the states, the visual cumbag is all bells and whistles â€“ when it should be drums and trumpets. It shoots in ya face within the first five minutes, then leaves you sticky, unsatisfied and looking for a quick exit.
How could something with so much potential fuck us over!?
I mean, come on! – Itâ€™s a superhero movie, based on a terrific little 40s comic series by Will Eisner! Itâ€™s the visual team behind â€˜â€™Sin Cityâ€™â€™ â€“ and is helmed by its co-director! Itâ€™s got an all-star cast including Samuel L.Jackson (OK, so Samâ€™s about as reliable as a cheap rubber these days but surely heâ€™s still got a bit of that fire he had around â€œPulp Fictionâ€-time, right!?), Scarlett Johansson, Eva Mendes and Jaime King!
As Corey Haim (drop â€˜Jawâ€™ for effect) muttered in the unforgettable trailers for â€œLicense to Driveâ€ â€“ â€œWhat could possibly go wrong?â€ (besides dripping gummy drool all over Heather Grahamâ€™s frizzy hairdo, pal?)
Seems, a lot.
Take the boring bits of Tim Burtonâ€™s â€˜â€™Batmanâ€™â€™ (and admit it, there were boring bits â€“ bits that had you checkin out your watch, hoping Vicki Vale needed saving again soonish) â€“ as well as thatâ€™s film score (I kid you not, someone ripped off Danny Elfmanâ€™s score! It sounds awfully similar!); the hammy eye-rolling performances of the ill-fated live-action â€œSuper Mario Brosâ€ (1992) movie, and a script that, if you didnâ€™t know any better, seems to have been written by someone who was shown their pink-slip from â€œGalactica 1980â€ way-back-when â€“ and youâ€™ve got â€œThe Spiritâ€ â€“ this yearâ€™s first contender for â€˜film least deserving of a theatrical releaseâ€™.
Proving he should write comic books â€“ and not direct movies! â€“ Frank Miller (he of such brilliant graphic novels as â€œThe Dark Knight Returnsâ€ and â€œ300â€) gives in to audiences hungry for more superhero-action, following â€œThe Dark Knightâ€ and â€œIron Manâ€, a film thatâ€™s likely got as much razzle-dazzle but far, far, far less class. But, I suppose it does have a guy in a maskâ€¦.
â€œThe Spiritâ€ tells of a back-from-the-dead cop (a dull Gabriel Macht; canâ€™t believe Lionsgate signed off on this guy!) whose arch enemy is a merciless gangster known as â€˜The Octopusâ€™ (Samuel L.Jackson). Johansson, Mendes and King are the eye-candy â€“ you wonâ€™t even remember the names of their characters upon exiting the theater.
Millerâ€™s responsible for this car crash â€“ he has no idea how to shoot a movie, no idea how to work with actors, and seemingly no idea how to transfer words to the screen.
S&M parlors should really start playing this puppy in the waiting room. Patrons will love it! (Just wait, Iâ€™ll be quoted in a goddamn newspaper ad now. â€œ[Cinema] patrons will love it!â€ â€“ Clint Morris).
We asked Jaime King at the â€œMy Bloody Valentine 3Dâ€ junket why she thinks the film flopped.
Naturally, and admirably, she vouched for the film, expressing her love for Mr. Miller. She did essentially say however that the film stood little chance in the wake of super-superhero-super hits like â€œThe Dark Knightâ€.
”People didnâ€™t really love the film”, King says, continuing “But I think that people were expecting something different than what it was. People see The Dark Knight and see Iron Man, which are awesome films, but then they think all comic book movies are going to be like that. And this is more like a comic strip movie. Do you know what I mean? It was quirky and out there. And I donâ€™t think people were ready for that.”
I agree â€“ yes it was quirky, yes itâ€™s out there, and maybe people werenâ€™t ready for it. But itâ€™s not that people arenâ€™t ready for quirky and out-there (they’ve been packing the theaters for decades to see whatever mind-fuck David Lynch does next), itâ€™s that theyâ€™re not ready for a return to the super-shitty comic book films of the 90sâ€¦.. thereâ€™s a reason nobody remains caped wonder flicks â€œBlank Manâ€, â€œMeteor Manâ€ and â€œCaptain Americaâ€. Warren Beatty’s “Dick Tracy” might be seen as a comic strip movie, too – but that was entertaining. It had plot to go with its pixels. This is, well, this is… “Dick Tracy” without the Dick, castrated from the very first draft.
Frank Miller is an awesome writer â€“ and I challenge anyone not to enjoy one of his literary offerings. As a filmmaker though, he leaves a lot to be desired. There was once upon a time I was actually looking forward to seeing his â€œFlash Gordonâ€ movie, not to mention long-gestating â€œSin Cityâ€ sequel, but quite honestly, now, Iâ€™m about as eager to play Tetris on my cellphone. Heâ€™s truly blown it coming around the second corner (and somehow I don’t think we’ll be seeing that “Flash” movie, or “Sin” sequel, anytime soon – – who’ll want to write a cheque for Frank after this one opened in 9th place at the box office and earned a shitty $6.5 million over its opening weekend?).
Watch “The Dark Knight” on Blu-Ray again, kids.