Monday, September 28, 2009

"Owwww, My ASS!!!"

So anyway, after this morning, I'm thinking there should be some sort of unwritten rule - call it a universally accepted natural law if you will - that there should be a limit on the number of ginormous shits you can have in a 24-hour period. Seriously! Late yesterday afternoon I had, what can only be described as the scat version of John Holmes, rip my poor, tender anus asunder. Then this morning, I was - and I don't use the term lightly - violated by Brown Ron Jeremy! I feel like I should buy stock in whoever makes A & D Ointment! There aren't enough bags of ice in the fucking world right now! It was as if two of the four horsemen entered our realm by drilling through my ass! Fecus Mortis - the death shit (where's that fucking spell in Harry Potter, I ask you?!)! I haven't been over-eating, and I'm regular. So what did I do to deserve such torture?! Is there some lesser-known God out there that I've offended - is Cornholus, God of the Atomic Shite (probably found on the same page as Bill, Lord of Postage Stamps), angry with me?!! I guess I should be glad I'm not Jewish, I'd be suffering from some twisted form of neurotic Poo-Envy (yeah, they were that big!). At this point I can't help but empathize with the many various young ladies in adult film who over the years have had to endure such probing repeatedly and for hours on end. It's almost enough for me to reconsider my stance on the whole "backdoor love"...thing!

BWAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!! OK, yeah...even I didn't buy that one! There isn't a big enough turd in the world to make me stop loving some good ol' fashion rear-entry rendering ("sometimes, if you're in the heat of the moment...it's ok to go ass-to-mouth." tee-hee!!!)!!! Hey...don't look at me like that. No. NO!!! Stop it! You chose to come here. You've been following my posts for God only knows how long - you should know that a weird one is always lurking around the corner. I've been "normal" for waaaaaaaayyyyyy the fuck too long - this blog was due for some off-the-wall, freaky, mind-fucked, disgusting insanity. You should know by now...diving off the deep end doesn't cut it for this blog. No, no, no...I take the deep end, kill it, skin it, fuck it, then eat it - in that order! So, caveat lector, as it were - "Shana, they bought their tickets...they knew what they were getting in to! I say, 'LET 'EM CRASH'". Still, could've been worse - could've been the hot-pepper squirts! The proverbial "brown lava of doom" you know. I'll take poo-sodomy-rape any day over that!!! Sorry, it's late (or early, depending on your point of view), and these are the things that go through my mind when I'm tired and bored. Sue me!

We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming...

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Fun with Revishunist Histuree

So anyway, I got on something of a screenplay kick a month or so back. I must've read 20 of 'em in the space of a couple of weeks. A good sampling of everything from the best (American Beauty, The Sixth Sense) to the absolute worst (The Avengers, Batman and Robin). While I was at it, I found an early draft of Quentin Tarantino's latest, Inglourious Basterds. So I had an inkling of what I was getting into prior to seeing the film - and I'll get a little more into that (particularly the differences with the final cut) later. So let's get right down to it shall we...Inglourious Basterds. One could make the argument that this is Tarantino's The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. Not because it's a Western, or because it's his finest achievement in film-making (though it's arguably close). There's just this methodical nature to the story, and a bit of gritty realism that link the two. Tarantino has oft maintained that GB&U is his favorite film ever - and he was thinking about it quite a bit over the last decade as he slowly hammered out the script for Basterds. GB&U wasn't a phenomenon in its time, and it wasn't Leone's biggest film endeavor. But time has been good to it and today it's generally regarded as Leone's masterwork. So perhaps time is what Basterds will need to really sell itself to the masses. As it is, I for one absolutely love it right here and now, and can't help but think that in 30 or 40 years (God willing I'm still dickin' around this rock) it will be on my own short list of favorite classics. Sticking to theme a bit, I'll break down my thoughts on the film with respect to that aforementioned legendary Western (which coincidentally happens to be one of my favorite films ever as well).

I suppose I'll just get it out of the way and start with "The Ugly" (of which, honestly, there's very little). So by now the lukewarm reception at Cannes has become fairly well known. The general consensus being that it was good, but not great - and way too damned long. Tarantino had to edit in one big damned hurry to get it ready for the festival and apparently (at the time) it showed. His original cut was supposedly in the neighborhood of 190+ minutes, to which he whittled it down to 148 for Cannes. After that reception, he had almost three months to tighten up the story and cut it down even further. Here's the kicker...ready? The final theatrical cut is 152 minutes! As it stands, I think it's too long. Going back to having read the screenplay - it screams epic war movie. So, he had two choices really. One: go balls out and make that epic, all 3+ hours of it, or two: trim, and trim, and trim some more - until it's something manageable, with a reasonable length, that won't seem like it's sitting confused somewhere in between epic and fantastic popcorn film. Unfortunately, that's sort of what we got - something in the middle. It needs a ten-minute shave - don't ask me where, but since he decided not to go the all-in route, another trim I think is in order. I put this in the ugly category because it's not in any way bad...it's just a tad unfocused. As for the only other "ugly" element - and I use the term only in jest - it would have to be the quick insert shot of Goebbels and his translator about midway through the film. It's the most ugly (and hilariously wonderful) bit of 5 second character development/exposition I've seen in recent memory.

Sitting on the fence (for me anyway) between "ugly" and "bad" is Tarantino's trademark use of 'dropped in' music. Originally, this was to have been his first film with an original score - provided by none other than Ennio Morricone himself. As a result from the combination of the film's rushed post to prepare for Cannes, and scheduling conflicts with Morricone's 193,468th score, he left the project - leaving Tarantino to resort to his fall-back musical sensibilities. But with a bit of a twist! The film is scored - but with cues from about a dozen other films, most of them from Morricone and Charles Bernstein. Sure a couple of "pop" songs sneak their way in, but it's not like this is the first WWII film to have a pop song in it (Kelley's Heroes comes to mind - which is a bit of a coincidence as Basterds uses a cue from Lalo Schifrin's score for that film). Using his temp track score as a basis for what he was going for makes me really fucking want to hear what Morricone would've come up with. My problem with what was used in the final print is that it's simultaneously very effective and horribly distracting. It captures the right mood effectively in each scene, but at the same time, it's very, very, very obvious it wasn't composed for this particular picture. It's a little of everything, from sound quality, to compositional styling, to familiarity of cues. It's just troublesome...I was really pushing for Tarantino to give this film a new score - and that bit's kind of a letdown for me. Is there anything else that I'd call bad in the film? Eh...not really no. I suppose one could argue that it meanders a bit - going back to the edit - and maybe there's not enough of the basterds in the movie with their namesake - but overall, there's a helluva lot to enjoy here. And like most of his movies - multiple viewings will only serve to increase the enjoyment of what's being seen.

So what's good...fucking everything (that isn't related to the edit or music, that is)!!! Forget what those stuffy European cocksuckers think - they wouldn't know a good time if it was probing their assholes with the worlds biggest French Tickler! No doubt you've heard at least some of the lavish praise and (seemingly) over-indulgent, near orgasmic hyperbole over Christoph Waltz's performance. In the immortal words of Lily von Schtupp, "It's twue...it's twue, it's twue, IT'S TWUE!!!" Christoph Waltz might as well start writing his Best Supporting Actor Oscar speech right now (and go ahead and keep it in German just to fuck with people). The man, as Col. Hans "the Jew Hunter" Landa of the SS, is un-be-fucking-lievable!!! Never in my life have I admired and been charmed by such a despicable, loathsome character. Point of fact, if the man doesn't win that damned Oscar next year, I may just swear off the friggin things forever. The movie is wallpapered with European actors and actresses performing mostly in their native tongue - and they're all fabulous really. That's not to say the Americans in the film aren't equally as good. Think what you will of Brad Pitt (lord knows some people despise him), the man can turn out quite a performance - even one as intentionally over-the-top as Lt. Aldo Raine. Tarantino's favorite ensemble of cameo's make their appearances (so to speak) - see how many you can spot. One in particular is a touch distracting, but in the end, welcome as always. Another thing I found quite fun was Tarantino's typical flashy dialogue - which can often come off as a tad self-indulgent (nooooo...really?!?!), but here is quite welcome...especially since about two-thirds of it is performed in a language other than English, which makes it kind of refreshing in a way.

Going back to that screenplay I read - there are missing scenes and bits that I miss quite a bit, and changes to the final film that are quite welcome. A couple of things in particular I miss - one, a scene with a pair of the basterds discussing their plan in a combination of pig-Latin and mock-Italian so as to fool all the Germans by whom they're surrounded. Secondly is the reaction of the lead female character, Shoshanna (played exquisitely by lovely French actress Melanie Laurent), after having just confronted a dreaded someone from her past. Not to spoil things, but it involved a wet floor beneath her feet when it was over - and it really sold her fear at the end of the scene. So uhh...yeah - overall I really loved this film! Despite some of the modern film-making anachronisms, it's really a very engrossing thing to watch. But then, I like all of Tarantino's movies - they all sit on the "very good" to "fan-fucking-tastic" side of the movie enjoyment scale for me. And Inglourious Basterds is no exception. I'm hard-pressed to say it's his best work. After all, spanking everyone's asses with Pulp Fiction so early in his career is quite the feat to overcome. But Basterds is certainly right up there next to it in my estimation. So I have to recommend everyone get out and enjoy some "Nah-zi killin'" goodness at their earliest convenience.

Incidentally - Tarantino, like many directors, and as you have no doubt noticed, has a bit of a penchant for giving himself parts in his movies (which can sometimes be unfortunate because like many who are directors then actors, he can be fucking terrible). Here he has one of the most memorable cameo appearances I can ever remember seeing. It's literally one of those 'blink-and-you'll-miss-it' moments early on in the second chapter, so keep a close eye out. It's a doozy!!!