The summer blockbuster season takes a week off this time around to slot in two shitty flicks just hoping to score some cash for the coffers. I get the idea. Can’t go a week without pounding the box office with something, anything, to get folks opening the wallets. Ryan Reynolds dons the green ring and Jim Carrey goes Antarctic on our asses.
Just remember, I'm not reviewing these movies, but rather predicting where they'll end up on the Tomatometer. Let’s take a look at what This Rotten Week has to offer.
Green Lantern Recently, Cinema Blend commandant Josh Tyler and I had a rather intellectual conversation regarding the merits, cinematic themes, underlying subtext, overt symbolism and just general opinions on and about the upcoming Green Lantern. It went something like this:
Me: Green Lantern looks horrible, right?
Josh: No way, I think it looks awesome.
Me: What?! Are we talking about the same movie?
Josh: You must not like sci-fi.
Me: Sci-fi or not, it looks stupid.
Josh: You’re stupid.
And though I’m not sure liking science fiction movies might predispose a viewer to enjoying a movie that appears much more Batman and Robin than Dark Knight, (with neon green featured predominantly throughout) there is a certain element of the population that have been waiting eagerly for a Hal Jordan story. But unlike other superhero stories, Green Lantern’s beginnings happen so far outside the realm of reality (read: a big green planet, with aliens aplenty), and his supernatural powers more far-reaching than most do-gooders, bringing it to life on the big screen is tantamount to creating a cartoon with real human actors. In simpler words, its just going to look cheesy fake. And it does.
Combine the element of fantastical cornball-ness with a script that, from the trailers, sounds like a fourth grader wrote it as a throwaway homework assignment, and Martin Campbell’s (Edge of Darkness - 55%, Casino Royale - 94%) movie won’t enter the lexicon of great comic book movies. In fact, it came along in a summer when it will be the most forgettable superhero fare of the season. A shame. Hal Jordan deserves better. The Rotten Watch for Green Lantern is 35%.
Mr. Popper’s Penguins Um, what the hell is this? I mean seriously, no joke, what the hell is going on here? This is an actual full length movie about a dude living in a New York penthouse who inherits a bunch of penguins, and said Antarctic avians live in said apartment with said dude and he teaches them to dance? I’ve got this whole thing right, and I’m not missing anything? Is everyone sick of the question marks, because I am. Color me confused.
In the sense that this is marketed towards kids and family, I have a decent excuse for not completely getting the audience (I avoid family and can’t stand kids), but that aside, does the target audience really matter here at all? Is anyone intrigued in even the slightest? I would guess not.
Mark Waters (The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past - 27%, The Spiderwick Chronicle - 80%) directs the tale of Jim Carrey hanging with penguins while also seemingly polarizing audiences across the board in another odd starring role from a guy who at times is the funniest guy alive and others the most annoyingly frustrating. This movie falls in the latter category.
I’ve been confused before. Hell, I spent last summer plowing through Infinite Jest. But this movie has me perplexed from top to bottom. When that happens I err on the side of sucking. The Rotten Watch for Mr. Popper’s Penguins is 27%.
Recapping last week:
I thought Super 8 (Predicted: 74% Actual: 82%) would dip a little more off its initial critical perch. It did a bit, but not as much as I suspected, maintaining a more than respectable rating. J.J. Abrams continues to pump out the cool.
Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer (Predicted: 36% Actual: 13%) sucked way worse than I thought. I mean it was obviously going to be bad, but I hoped the kiddie schtickiness would end up moderately endearing instead of just plain annoying. Hell, at least Heather Graham is still hot.
Next week Cameron Diaz fulfills every teacher’s inner desires and some cars get set to ride again. It’s going to be a Rotten Week!