June 10th, 2009


Movie Review: The Up Hangover

Could two movies be more diametrically opposite than the Disney/Pixar "Up" and the Todd Philips directed "The Hangover"? I mean, there's the naked boobs, naked wieners, the cursing and violence and vomiting ... and then there's The Hangover.

Oh ho ho. Hee hee hee.

What these two movies DO have in common is that they didn't QUITE live up to expectations. As far as money is concerned, they surpassed those expectations on a silver rocket. Up lags behind only the juggernaut that was Finding Nemo; and The Hangover more than doubled the predictions set up by the studio. But for me, I dunno.

I liked both of them well enough, but just not as much as I thought I would. Indeed, both of these movies were coming off of hard-to-follow features.

Let's start with Up. First of all, it's got to go on after Wall-E, which may have ingratiated itself in my all time top cartoons ever. Up there with Dumbo and Robin Hood and 101 Dalmations. I haven't really taken the time to sort through all of my favorite Disney movies, but nevertheless it's still a tough nut to crack. I like these Pixar movies quite a bit, but none seem to have the lasting appeal that Wall-E has managed. More than anything, I'd go to a Pixar film, watch it once, revert back to childhood, and then snap out of it as soon as it was over.

I knew going in that Up had a very melancholy vibe and I was totally ready for it. Looking forward to it even; it's been a while since I've had a good cry in a movie theater. And while it almost got me there, it didn't quite go far enough on that end. A lot of the time I ended up annoyed more than anything. I hate the Obnoxious Kid they like to throw into cartoons for comic relief. I rarely if ever find the Obnoxious Kid funny, in fiction or in real life.

Wall-E didn't have to strain to get laughs. It didn't even need laughs at all, but the ones it generated were at least genuine. In Up, the laughs were mostly forced, though I was pretty entertained by the dogs. Especially when they got distracted in their thoughts by a SQUIRREL!

Moving on to The Hangover, I think I was a little more satisfied by this effort, but it had a tall order to follow as well. It was in EVERY preview: from the Director who brought you "Old School". Even though that was six years ago. And Todd Philips didn't even write The Hangover (he co-wrote Old School); it was two douchebags named Jon Lucas and Scott Moore, who wrote Ghosts of Girlfriends Past and Four Christmases.

I'll say this about The Hangover, it was readily apparent which parts were influenced by the hack writing team of Lucas & Moore, and which parts had a little Galifianakis flavor.

I didn't like the Alan character as much as I thought I would, and honestly, that was the only reason I was going to this movie. It seemed like they really tried to restrain Galifianakis. I don't know what I was expecting; I guess maybe I've seen him live too many times. I was probably expecting more of an overbearing, smart-ass. Either that, or just turn up the Jackass Wildcard side to full blast. As it stands, Alan ends up being this guy who's incompetent, kinda creepy, kinda goofy, and in a way sympathetic. I don't want people to feel sorry for Galifianakis! I want them to loathe him because he's so obnoxious!

I could have done without the whole taser scene.

I could have used more Heather Graham, boob or boob-free. She's swell.

The climactic Fuck You scene with Stu and his girlfriend was very well done. It took all of my energy not to stand and applaud in the theater.

Anyway, while this may not be as awesome as Old School, like Old School, it could prove to grow on me. Although, I'm wary of reports saying that a sequel is already being bandied about. If it gets Zach Galifianakis more (and better) movie roles, I'm all for it.

Why he ever let Operation Dumbo Drop pass him by, I'll never know


End Of The Day Blues

The people have spoken! They want shorter podcasts!

Well, they didn't really speak so much as go to Weak Stream in droves this week. And by droves, I mean like 8 times. We're up to 51 page views since I put up the counter! And I'm thinking possibly up to 1/2 is not me going back to check and see what my page count is up to!

I need a life.

Not really, because having a life is a lot of fucking work.

This is the part of the day I hate. Normally I've gotten the bulk of my work done, I've read all there is to read on them Internets, and there's still a solid 90 minutes of waste. I'd take a nap, but surely my presence would be missing.

I have a feeling that I'd be a more attractive mate - or at the very least make more friends at work and in society - if I could bullshit better in the Small Talk department, or otherwise gave two shits about what's going on in someone's life who I don't even know.

I can't tell you how many times I've been asked How My Weekend Was, only to give them one of my three stock answers:

Pretty good.

Pretty good, low key.

Pretty good, too short though.

And in case you overhear me giving one of these stock answers, I'll give you the supersecret translations for each:

Pretty good = Pretty good.

Pretty good, low key = I only got hammered on Saturday night and then spent all day Sunday lying around the apartment doing a load of laundry and masturbating on the couch.

Pretty good, too short though = I got shitfaced both nights, pissed the bed, spent all day Sunday puking up bile, did a load of laundry, and masturbated on the couch with a bottle of hand-lotion while my roommate took a nap in the next room.

Not only do I give them stock answers to banal questions, but I almost never reciprocate with a volley of, "And how was YOUR weekend?" If I do, it's probably because I find them sexually attractive. Never because I actually care what they did with their weekends.

Nobody really gives a shit about my weekend or anyone else's weekend. They're just doing it to be nice. And because we just so happened to pass one another on the way to the kitchenette. And since we happen - by chance - to occupy the same airspace for this brief interlude on our workday, they find it absolutely unthinkable to spend that time occupying that same airspace in silence.

I know it's been asked time and time again, like What Is Love and What Is The Meaning Of Life, but WHY do people feel it's necessary to spend every moment in the presence of other people, in conversation, no matter how boring and trivial?

And let's face it, we're at work. Unless you know your co-worker really well, it's difficult to determine what's an "appropriate" topic of conversation and what's not. You never know what's going to get someone's fucking panties in a fucking bunch up their tight fucking asses; so you've got to keep all conversation to topics like the weather, or American Idol, or MAYBE what movie you've seen recently, but if it's not a widely popular movie, then you better be ready for the icy stare of adult judgment.

I don't know where I was going with all of this. Essentially I'm just killing time until four.