a pro script reader ponders movies, reading, writing and the occasional personal flashback

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The Phlegm Monkey

I've been battling one of these head/chest/coughing-like-a-madman things for a few days now. I'm wrestling with the phlegm monkey, and he's winning.

As I cough, and rest, I did catch the Sci Fi miniseries "The Lost Room" on DVD. It's compulsively watchable, and the kind of thing that I'd love to spec if it was a TV series, though as the 6-episode thing it was, it works well.

I'm in no hurry to see Grindhouse, and I guess few other people are either. I think it's sort of caught up in one of the problems with Hollywood today: while a movie like 300 has a see-it-on-the-big-screen feel, if you are going to make an homage to '70s b-movies, which most people probably have only seen on TV or video anyway, you can't be surprised if they decide to wait for a few months until the DVD comes out. I am.

Now, if there was a drive-in around the corner showing it, that would be a different story.

It's also being reported that a LOT of people are leaving after the first movie, unaware that there are two of them, which certainly isn't helping word of mouth (since by most accounts the second movie, Tarantino's, is the stronger one). Look for the distributor to try to emphasize this in ads this weekend, though with a truckload of new movies opening, it'll still probably drop off a lot.

Apparently there are plans to release longer versions of both movies separately on DVD.

Otherwise, Let's Go Mets. And the more I hear about the parking/traffic hell that the Dodgers high-touted new parking plan has become, the more I miss New York, where you can take the subway to the game and not have to sweat any of it.


At 2:40 PM, Blogger Harry Connolly said...

I enjoyed THE LOST ROOM for the most part, but the ending was a disaster. It made no sense at all and ruined the effect for me.

At 3:59 PM, Blogger shecanfilmit said...

Don't you have those light rail things in LA now that could maybe get you to the ballpark?

Did you ever see the Curb Your Enthusiasm episode where Larry picked up a hooker so he could drive in the HOV lane to get to a Dodger game on time? Best episode of the series, in my small opinion.

At 8:21 PM, Anonymous Mike E said...

See, that's funny, because the folks I know who saw Grindhouse felt like RR's movie was stronger.

One guy said that during one of Tarantino's "classic" dialogue scenes, someone in the audience shouted, "Yeah, we get it. Get on with it already."

I guess it's all subjective in the end. I'll wait for the DVD.

At 9:43 PM, Anonymous Matt said...

I liked Tarantino's better, but I loved them both. I think he understands that the more you know these girls, the more impact the action will have on you. Which was what kept me from loving Rodrigeuz's as much. Great action, but very little characterization.

At 7:18 AM, Anonymous blair said...

That's brilliant! I didn't think of that -- there IS a drive-in around the corner from me. They're not open yet, but come summer, the first few shows they play are big hits (or well hyped movies) from over the winter.

If they get Grindhouse -- I'm so there.

At 1:30 PM, Blogger Emily Blake said...

I was gonna go see it, then I saw that Eli Roth trailer. I couldn't even finish watching that because of the gorss-out factor. So I figured if I coudn't sit through one of the trailers I probably couldn't handle two more horror movies.

At 1:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Emily, just so you know, the trailers are actually much worse than the movies in the gross out department.

At 3:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

While most of the reviews I've read say Tarantino's film is better, like mike e, most of the people I know who've seen it vastly preferred Rodriguez's.

I'm in the waiting for DVD camp. If I do decide to see it/them at all. Weinstein's talk of yanking it from theatres and then doing a re-release of each film (with "missing" reels restored) as a stand-alone is not inspiring my confidence.

At 4:10 PM, Blogger E.C. Henry said...

If I was you, Scott, I'd pass on "The Grindhouse" all together. I'm on the bandwaggon with those who say he's good with dialog, but the SLEAZE FACTOR in his work is alarmlingly high. Case and point in "Planet Terror" Quinten has a cameo as a diseased military guard who tries to rape the main protagonist's love interest when alone with her in an elevator. Totally unnessary, gross, and in poor taste. In "Reservoir Dogs" there's that scene with the tied up police officer getting his ear hacked off. In "Pulp Fiction" there's the cops abducting people to sexualy assualt them in private. In "Dusk Till Dawn", Quinten played a sexual deviant. Sencing a trend here?

- E.C. Henry from Bonney Lake, WA

At 1:24 AM, Anonymous Matt said...

What's wrong with a little sexual deviancy? IN the movies that is.
I think you're making too much of it. The guy's a filmmaker, a creative person. So his mind is somewhat warped? Those who live in glass houses...

At 7:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a great idea - to see it at the Drive-In! I found a site listing operating drive-ins around the country for those interested:

The Mission one in Montclair, CA is now called the Mission Tiki and seems to have been renovated a couple of years ago. I'm going to try it out!

At 1:28 PM, Anonymous Joe Valdez said...

Both Rodriguez and Tarantino created something unique, in my opinion. Well written, funny, uncomfortable, brilliantly cast, well made and really, really entertaining. I mean, you've got two movies, four trailers and even a cartoon of sorts for the price of one ticket.

That said, I don't know why anyone should be alarmed that it isn't making money. As it's been mentioned, the release date Dimension picked was awful. And Kill Bill was far from a blockbuster, if people remember. These are not mass entertainment type movies and they're definitely not for anyone under 17.

People did get up and leave after Rodriguez's segment when I saw this over the weekend, and the ones that stayed, I could kind of feel getting uncomfortable during the 45 or so minutes Tarantino simply has his cast sitting in cars or BBQ joints talking. The movie was not sold as a David Mamet play, and even I was wondering when something was going to happen.

Also, I would not take a woman to see this without a pre-screening evaluation of some sort, like asking her which she liked more, The Devil Wears Prada or The Devil's Rejects. Maybe that's sexist, but I know few women who would not be turned off or upset by the movie in some way. It's not for the faint of heart.

None of this says "America's #1 Movie" to me. I like that. It's like the flicks Tarantino made before Pulp Fiction that no one had really seen and were just for you and your buddies.

At 2:34 PM, Anonymous Matt said...

Joe, agreed 100% except for the part about finding the first 45 minutes kinda boring. I loved it. I've always felt Tarantino wasn't meant for mass production. Listen to his dialogue. It's not mainstream at all. Pulp Fiction is his only big hit, and that was kind of a fluke. The ultimate word of mouth blockbuster. Again, you are right. You get two movies, four trailers, all for the price of one ticket. Greatest deal ever.


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