Monday, February 16, 2009

Joaquin's Mockumentary?

First we were shocked at Joaquin Phoenix's announcement that he was leaving the acting business. Then we were further confused as we learned he was calling it quits in order to put his passion for music into high gear, hip-hop music to be exact.

Oh, then came the videos. First the Las Vegas shots of him floundering about on stage, eventually falling off. Then his charismatic presence on Letterman caught all of our attention. It seems Phoenix is pushing the weirdness factor a bit more the further he goes.

Though word on the street is that we all might be victims of a well played hoax. You see Phoenix's brother-in-law Casey Affleck anounced his directorial debut recently for a documentary he was filming. The subject of said documentary, you guessed it, Phoenix's hip-hop career. A few hollywood lightbulbs went on over the heads of critics, bloggers and other folks who generally don't have much of a life. Could Phoenix's crazy antics be at the expense of a mockumentary in the making? I guess we will all just have to wait and see.

So what do you think? Has Joaquin Phoenix boarded the crazy train or are we all falling for perhaps one of the greatest jokes in hollywood history?

Friday the 13th - Rent it but it still may not be worth the $4

“We’re all just daddy issues and douche bags. Can’t we all just be one happy cliché?”

You said it token stoner dude.

I saw Friday the 13th last weekend on Friday the 14. Yeah that’s right, my lady is awesome. However, as most would expect, the film did not meet up to any of even the smallest of expectations, and produced a series of crimes that horror movie fans will be bringing the gavel down upon.

The film strays so far from the original’s feel, only borrowing the concept of a scary guy in a hockey mask, that fans of the original will be disappointed as it fails to hold up to its 1980 counterpart. All in all, this remake is a mix of first two Friday the 13ths. For those who are in-the-know, they should be able to spot a few nostalgic moments such as Jason’s bag mask as well as others.

But the sprinkling of nostalgia doesn’t carry the film through an array of poor film-making choices. Granted, the initial flick helped to establish some time honored horror movie clichés, but the remake takes these clichés to an embarrassing level, where there is no decent script, twists or turns, or inventive characters. Granted it is hard to pull off a remake, especially when it is of a well-loved franchise, but this remake gave me the feeling that they didn’t even try to create anything successful and banked on the curiosity of fans to garner ticket sales (big surprise).

The movie comes stock with all the drugs, sex and token characters as any other film. So much that it removes any of the original’s feel, yet still leaves the viewer with a sense that they have seen this all before, in the hundreds of horror movies to come since the original in 1980. You don’t have to make some novel work of art, but at least put some creative and innovative thought into it, especially while handling the re-imaging of a delicate classic.

Lastly, on a personal level, the star of the film, Jared Padelecki, appears to be quite a tall drink of water, and not only do you got him on a little Royal Enfield motorcycle, you dubbed over the bike, making it sound like a beefed up Harley. Come on! Couldn’t you just fork up the dough and got the guy on a Triumph? Padelecki looks like a circus clown on a scooter.

Interesting tidbit: Over the past four years Jared Padelecki and Jensen Ackles have come into homes across America each week via the television show Supernatural. To be honest, I do like the show and how each episode is like a mini horror movie. I was therefore intrigued when both actors would be coming to the big screen this year. Coincidentally, both actors were cast in remakes of classic ‘80s horror movies, My Bloody Valentine and Friday the 13th. And not only that, though Ackle’s Bloody Valentine remake came out first, Padelicki’s remake came out on Valentine’s Day! Whoa …