Posts Tagged ‘batman’

Change is in the air, my friends. The oxygen slows in its vibration, caught amidst the rushing meteorological shifts of this midwestern metropolis. There is gunk in my throat. My clothing has shifted from hues of happiness to those of hipsterian disdain for all things uncool. Yes, my friends, it is FALL. And, as this season was so named to follow Lucifer’s plummet from Providence of summer exponentialism, through the purgatory of mid-September and October bullshit horror second-hand mediocrity and finally into the pit of despair known only to the brave as ‘January’, so have we tumbled from the majesty that was this summer movie season. Did I say majesty? I mean Meh-ity. That’s right, this summer was filled with more duds than a post-Steve Jobs iPhone release (POSTHUMOUS BURN!). However, it is my job, nay my DUTY (tee hee, doody) to rip, roll, tar and feather every release of this thermodynamically diverse cinematic season. So, yes, kiddies, this is the one you have ALL been waiting for (and by all I mean probably like three of you…if that), get ready for Andrew’s:

SUMMER MOVIE AWARDS 2013!

Oh thank you, please, please, don’t get out of your computer chair…oh…please! Stop with all the adulation! I…well…alright…

Now come on guys, I have an article to write! Please, oh, you are too kind. This is all…just…too overwhelming…

WHAT? FUCK YOU AFFLECK! GET OUT OF MY GIFS, YOU NOT-BATMAN SON OF A BITCH! THIS IS MY AWARDS SHOW AND YOU’RE NOT WINNING ANYTHING! I WILL HUNT YOU DOWN LIKE THE NOT-BATMAN YOU ARE AND HIT YOU WITH A MUTHERFUCKING BATARANG! (Spoilers, he totally wins an award. ;). (Okay, second parenthetical…those winks really make me uncomfortable. It’s like my computer is flirting with me. And my computer has seen WAY too much of me to make that appropriate.) Without any further Ado (heh, heh, SPOILERS) let’s get this underway…

MOST MEDIOCRE MOVIE I’M GLAD I MISSED

Winner: The Internship; Runner-Up: Now You See Me

"What should be on the poster? Fuck it. I need to get baked. Let's just have them stand there." Genius designer.

“What should be on the poster? Fuck it. I need to get baked. Let’s just have them stand there.” Genius designer.

Alright, so in every summer, in between the bombast, the explosions, and the RDJ shenanigans, studios attempt to unload middling materials that have already cost so much damn money that they can’t help but attempt to make even a bum’s fortune on. Now, these movies sneak into theaters every year, sometimes disguised as remakes of massive blockbusters (AHEM The Amazing Spiderman AHEM) or four-quels to trilogies that don’t need another movie (AHEM PIRATES 4 and BOURNE 4 AHEM). However, this year, the cake is taken with aplomb and idiocy by the duo that brought us the misogynistic stupid-a-palooza that was The Wedding Crashers, all packaged into a delightful shit-twinkie coated with Google advertising. That’s right, The Internship looked like a rancid pile of boring. Like, if this was once a fanciful bouquet of ‘Interesting’ then some idiot left it in the sun for two weeks, forgetting that DAIRY DOESN’T DO WELL IN THE SUMMER HEAT and it gradually transforms into a mutated hunk of sludge less appetizing than that restaurant that was started by a gastroenterologist (My mother was extremely perturbed when she discovered Colonic Cuisine was not an establishment specializing in colonial delicacies). Now, I didn’t see it, but from everything we could see in the ads it was ‘cool kids help the nerds to be less nerdy and LET LOOSE and FIND THE REAL THEM so they can BE BETTER AT THEIR JOBS’ or something. Bullshit. This is what would have really happened: “They don’t get hired by Google. They die in a gutter. Maybe in a hobo fire. End of Movie.” The hobo fire is the twist. So, no, I will not be watching you, The Internship. I don’t want your miserable excuses for PG-13 dick-filled (not the appendage) comedy and your super-liminal advertising for media monstrosity Google. (Don’t hate me Google. I love you. Make my site famous! I’ll sacrifice anything the God of the Internet needs! Virgins? Annoying roommates? Pizza? Doing your laundry? Microsoft Bing? I’ll do anything you want!)

Also, Now You See Me looked like David Blaine’s wet dream where he was in Ocean’s Eleven and Woody Harrelson showed up. *Shudder*

MOVIE I WISH I HAD BEEN DRUNKER FOR

Winner: The Great Gatsby 3DRunner Up: White House Down; Man of Steel

The Fitzgerald is watching you...

Leo DiCaprio will ejaculate the American Dream on your face.

Uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuugh

Sorry, I’m not done. UUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU UUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGH. There is nothing worse than sitting in a movie and reaching for a drink you’ve already finished. It’s agony. It’s as though the doctor is amputating a gangrenous limb and there’s no time for anesthesia. You reach for the whiskey…but the fucking orderly already downed it. That’s what it was like watching The Great Gatsby. It’s a movie like this that helps me understand why Oedipus claws out his eyes. And that was just because he fucked his mom. HE DIDN’T EVEN SEE THE GREAT GATSBY. It was a measure of impossible restraint to stop myself from impaling my pupils with snow caps to save myself from the turd-icaine of a literary adapt-a-Leo-tion. Seriously, at the halfway point, I reached for the champagne Amelia and I had snuck in and I almost screamed in horror when I discovered it empty. The rest of that thing was sobering in the same way that waking up with your head in the dog’s food bowl and the distinct taste of Pedigree Chum on your tongue can be (that totally never happened. It’s just an example. That definitely did not happen last August and my roommates did not force me to pay for another bag of food and therapy for the dog…totally didn’t happen). So, while Man of Steel was a teetotaled experience of agonized proportions and there isn’t enough alcohol in the world to make White House Down the cinematic equivalent of not-food poisoning, The Great Gatsby is offered this dubious award for reminding me that I would rather remove my own eyeballs with a spoon than watch another Baz Luhrmann film. Or eat dog food.

MOVIE I ALMOST GOT INTO A FIST-FIGHT ABOUT

Winner: Star Trek Into DarknessRunner-Up: Despicable Me 2

"Who put a goddamn banana in the exhaust? It's not funny guys!" ~ The final log of Captain Jim T. Kirk.

Most. Destructive. Fart. Ever.

Alrighty, this is the award that will probably piss off a few people. I know…because I almost got into a fist-fight about it. So…I didn’t like Star Trek Into Darkness (*cower and cover face*…wait…are they gone? Good). It’s true. The first Star Trek reboot movie was a hoot and/or a holler. We had sexy new this and sexy new that and OMG MY EYES – LENS FLARE! There were tight new costumes, explosive new weapons, and smoldering chemistry so hot it would make a thermite reaction jealous (MISINFORMED CHEMISTRY JOKE!). Granted, the plot was flimsier than an OJ alibi, but that didn’t matter. It was about characters. It was about man-on-vulcan growl-action. It was about Simon Pegg with a Scottish accent. But then…the sequel. Like a ruined sauce, the burner was too high and the elements that interacted so pleasantly before were reduced to a simple and unappetizing sludge. All the women became yapping shrews with D-cups while the plot, driven by evil Admiral Robocop, had somehow become more complex but even flimsier…like a Moebius Strip made out of blue Fruit Roll Up. It looks delicious…but there’s no such fucking thing as ‘Blue Raspberry’. Unfortunately, expressing disdain for anything that has included the newly anointed god of all Sexy Nerdom, Bendydick Cumberbund, is a crime worthy of death. Thusly, I had a multitude of Sherlock-ian friends accost me on my negative feelings. Granted, it never came to blows because, in all honesty, our asthma would have acted up two minutes into it…but it was the closest I came to a brawl in years. Other than that time I almost punched a teenager in line for The Dark Knight Rises (true story).

The runner up receives honorable mention due to a moment of pure vitriol I experienced in my own home. If you want a piece of advice…never, ever, ever say that you don’t like Despicable Me around my girlfriend. Deal? Deal.

MOST OBAMA

Winner: Idris Elba in Pacific RimRunner-Up: Jamie Foxx in White House Down

Okay, okay, yes, Jamie Foxx played the first black president in White House Down. Yes, his wife looked like Michelle Obama. And yes, his character was named Shcmarack Schmo-Schmama. But there is no fucking way he gets this award. If one can sum up Barack Obama in essence, he is a positive role-model and figure of power for the African American community. He is a leader who doesn’t always make the best decision, but he sticks to his beliefs while not being afraid to compromise.  So, by those considerations, Idris Elba is the most badass of fucking badasses ever to roam the Earth. I’m not kidding. I don’t care how silly his character’s name, be it Stringer Bell or Stacker Pentecost or Selection Easter or Serendipity Yom Kippur, Elba is like a deity dropped from the heavens to show humanity how to eat glass and spit out diamonds. Honestly, this man can play any role with power. James Bond? Fuck yes. Doctor Who? Do it. Queen Elizabeth II? It would be an interesting adjustment, but fuck it, let’s do this. The moment in Pacific Rim where Elba turns to one of the indeterminate white boys and says “One, don’t ever touch me again. And two, don’t EVER touch me again. Is that clear?” and then he walks off screen, a colossus of permeating confidence and charisma was the most sexually awakening experience in my life since Reese Witherspoon had pointy boobs in Pleasantville (also, shamefully, a true story). I mean…look at this exemplary specimen of humanity:

Yeah…not just women (*cross legs*)

So, yes, Jamie Foxx. You can wear your silly glasses and shoot bazookas and tell people to get their hands off your Jordans. You might have even chewed more gravel than a special edition Tommy Lee Jones gravel pit when you were in Django Unchained. But you will never reach levels of unbreakable badassery achieved by a man named after the fucking island where Napoleon was exiled.

That’s right. Fucking Napoleon.

BEST MOVIE I MISSED LAST SUMMER AND FINALLY GOT AROUND TO SEEING AND LOVED

Winner: Beasts of the Southern Wild; Runner-Up: Let’s be real, I made up this category to have an excuse to talk about Beasts of the Southern Wild…so let’s just say The Conjuring

220px-Beats-of-the-southern-wild-movie-poster

Alternate Title: How Not to Use Fireworks – The New Orleans Story

This was perhaps my greatest regret of the previous summer. Also, a number of tequila shots. Those were regretful. I think. I don’t remember what happened after, but I know the night ended and I had split my pants in two…so…probably not well. Of all the raucous insanity of the last summer, what with the capstone to Nolan’s Batrilogy and the resounding success and not-at-all-the-bloated-corpse-floating-in-the-East-River-we-thought-it-would-be that was The Avengers, I barely had enough time to explore the finer dining options on offer. Granted, for a city with as many damn hipsters as Chicago, we have the same number of art-house movie theaters as we have insane midget mayors (meaning: one). Thus, it is difficult to consume the delicacies offered by the independent cinema scene. Well, I eventually got my hands on this little ditty and I gobbled it up like Augustus Gloop after finding a Fruit Roll Up Moebius Strip. And, might I say, it was delectable. Beasts is an almost Grecian epic limited only by its impossible imagination. The performances are impeccable. The direction is manic. The script is borderline nonsensical. But the package is so much more than simply the sum of its parts. You might not understand why massive pig-boar-elephant things came out of Gulf of Mexico, and you might not get why Hushpuppy hangs out with a stripper she calls ‘mom’, or why she was named after a harshly unfashionable shoe. But it doesn’t matter. The film is a sliver of perfection, a vein of platinum surrounded by igneous rock. One can smash the precious mineral free and purify it to mold it into any shape you please…but why do that? The impurities only make the product more beautiful.

Oh yes, and I included The Conjuring because I didn’t really want to make a category for “Movie Most Likely to Make You Need Another Pair of Underwear”. Wait…why didn’t I do that? What the fuck, brain? Get your shit together. Oh well. Maybe next year.

MOST PISSED OFF NO ONE WOULD GET DRUNK AND SEE IT WITH ME

Winner: R.I.P.D.; Runner-Up: After Earth

I bet those two were fucking blazed every second of that production.

I’m coming for you, mutherfucker. Drunkenly.

Well, this category is slightly different than last year. Last year, the winner of this category eventually came out from behind and won Movie of the Year. That’s right, fucking BATTLESHIP. It didn’t matter how much I whined and cried and showed up to people’s work unannounced with a fifth of Jack stamping my feet until security had to escort me out, nobody would see Battleship with me in theaters. And it was AMAZE-BALLS. This year, the honor is slightly murkier. The stage was set for the perfect outing. Huntsy, Erin and I were going to sneak in a few metric tons of alcohol and watch R.I.P.D. the ironically titled finishing touch the tombstone for Ryan Reynolds’ acting career. This movie, parading Jeff Bridges as a verbally deficient post-mortem law man and Reynolds trying desperately to hang onto his lasting relevance, was apparently so fucking bad that they pulled it from theaters AFTER TWO WEEKS. The three of us were going to do a special episode of Whine and Cheese where we snuck into the bathroom to review sections on our phones. However, lo and behold, the movie was R.I.P.peD. from under us, like a tablecloth at a magic show. And so, we were lost, floundering, searching for answers, for hope, for Jeff Bridges sounding like Mr. Ed…thus, eventually, we watched Possession and almost, literally, committed ritualistic suicide due to over-doses of G-Palt. So, I promise you, when that steaming pile of Reynolds excrement becomes available on the Red-Box or the Flix of Net or the fabled land of ‘Illegal Movies’ we shall, oh, we shall get trashed and review it.

Also, After Earth sounded agonizing. I love agonizing. Just like I love M. Night Shamalamadingdong. Did I say love? I mean poop on.

MOVIE SERIES THAT MOST MADE ME SEE THE LIGHT OF GOD

Winner: The Fast and the FuriousRunner-Up: The Cornetto Trilogy

 Do you see how unrealistic this movie is? It's only mildly cloudy in London. Bullshit.

It’s like a model call for douchebags!

Now, this was a shockingly difficult category. I see god a lot. I saw him in the finale of The Avengers; I saw the jolly fellow at the conclusion of Children of Men; I caught a glimpse of him when R. Kelly reveals the midget in Trapped in the Closet; and I’m definitely sure I see the altruistic old man every year at the mall with children on his knee. The guy in the red suit, that’s God, right? Anyway, this summer, perhaps more than any other, opened my eyes to true cinematic brilliance. No it wasn’t Citizen Kane or Metropolis. Nor was it The Godfather or Black Swan. It was, in fact, that metallic ballet of flying meatheads and automobiles that is The Fast and the Furious. After missing the lion’s share of the series (chapters 2 through 5, to be exact), I thought I would sit in the theater and be bored with countless tired inside jokes and character choices esoteric to the outside non-Fast non-Furious fans (The Slow and the Impenetrably Calm? The Stupid and the Rational? The Eat-Whenever-You-Want and the Not-Realted-to-Samuel-L-Jackson-in-The-Avengers?). What I witnessed instead was a panoply of genius; a nonsensically coherent parade of bombast and excess; a poem of such pointlessness and beauty that the Dada movement would fall down and weep at its feet. Yes, The Fast and the Furious changed my life. Now, will I go back and watch all of them in a row? Most likely. Will I film my reactions? That is also very likely. Will I be a haggard inebriated mess? Most definitely. But, most importantly, I will be first in line for the next installment if only to see Kurt Russell…but it won’t be for Kurt Russell, it will be for EVERYTHING.

The Cornetto Trilogy, on the other hand, brought me to enlightenment in a subtler manner. Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg’s trilogy of British comedies, beginning with Shaun of the Dead and ending with the appropriately titled The World’s End, not only strive for the upper-reaches of hilarity, but have such a quiet underlying brilliance that the average movie watcher might not notice at all. From a literary stand point, The World’s End is practically genius. Like, Stoppard-levels of clever. It wasn’t something I noticed when first watching the film, but just read this article (spoilers within) to see how intricate the thought process was behind the film’s themes and references. Edgar Wright has always been a savant of referential humor, but this might be the first time that he trumps Joyce for his complexity of allusions. Check it out. So, yes, dumb summer movies CAN be intelligent. And I don’t mean faux-Inception smart where people spend an hour and a half explaining a plot mechanic that everyone conveniently ignores for the remainder of the runtime. (Don’t get me started on Inception. It will turn into a rant within a rant within a rant within a…OH GOD. IT’S HAPPENING AGAIN!). I mean, like actually sensibly coherent. Well done, boys. Well done.

MOST BATMAN

Winner: Iron Man 3; Runner-Up: The Spectacular Now

In Marvel-land, RDJ holds the orgasms for the ladies.

RDJ was mad they didn’t cast him in Pacific Rim.

I understand the IRON-y of my choice with this category (see what I did there? Do you see? DO YOU SEE? I’m fucking hilarious). In fact, Mr. Downey Jr. was precisely the reason why The Avengers won the award for the most rancid of my negative awards, ‘Least Batman’, last year. His fast-talking, consequence-avoiding, playboy Tony Stark couldn’t have been further from the Dark Knight in all ways. Granted, he doesn’t have superpowers of any kind…and he’s a philanthropic billionaire who turns himself vigilante with his considerable finances…and he has to fight both competitors and mad geniuses…well, anyway, that’s where the comparison stops. However, in Iron Man 3, after The Avengers proved that there is an upper limit to ridiculous third-act finale battles, Shane Black took Stark back to his roots. With a few far-fetched plot points in hand, he forces Stark to use his considerable smarts to rebuild his weaponry using nothing more than house-hold appliances. The effect is brilliant. Finally, we feel as though RDJ might be in actual danger, seeing as he doesn’t have his super-invulnerability-do-everything-swiss-army-knife suit at all times. He even begins feeling remorse and darkness for things that happened in previous movies. AND HE FIGHTS TERRORISTS. If this ain’t Batman, I don’t know what is. Unless it’s actually Batman. Because that’s pretty Batman. You know what else is completely Batman? This tie-clip:

My girlfriend is better than your girlfriend. Because she makes my tie Batman.

The runner up in this category doesn’t have an article attached for various reasons that will be discussed soon…but The Spectacular Now is the tale of a kid who barely has parents, spends his time wooing a girl and trying to figure out his life. Parentless kids? What’s more Batman than that? OTHER THAN MY FUCKING TIE CLIP. So, yes, you want to be Batman? Kill your parents. Become a billionaire. Or…more simply, GET MY TIE CLIP.

LEAST BATMAN

Winner: Ben Affleck; Runner-Up: The Great Gatsby 3D

Yep. The Drunk Knight himself returns.

Yep. The Drunk Knight himself returns.

Sigh.

I dreamed a dream of a world with JGL. When hope was high and movies worth making. I dreamed a dream Batman would never die. I dreamed that Zack Snyder would be forgiving. When I was young and unafraid, and Batmen were made and used and wasted. There was no bat-price to be paid. No Clooney unsung, no Kilmer untasted. But then the Snyder comes at night, with his dick as loud as thunder. As he tears your hope apart. And he turns your dream to Affleck…

I want to go on record here. I have no problem with Ben Affleck. His work behind the camera is nothing short of excellent. Each of his movies, Gone Baby Gone, The Town and last year’s Best Picture winner Argo deserve every ounce of praise they have received. However, I don’t know what it is…whenever he gets in front of the camera everything just…well…goes wrong. What was a funny and smart indictment of modern Catholicism in Dogma turns to shit monster way too fast. What was Pearl Harbor…well, continued to be Pearl Harbor. At least in Argo all he had to do was grumble and pretend that he’s hispanic (Tony Mendoza? Really?). Even in the trailers for his new movie opposite that juggernaut of thespian training that is Justin Timberlake, he looks about as charismatic as a forgotten, carved pumpkin on November 10th. Just…deflated. So, I don’t have too much beef with the Affleck. Worse Batmen have been cast (AHEM Clooney AHEH-HEH-HEH-AGH-I’M-COUGHING-UP-BLOOD-HEM). Worse directors have been hired (Fucking Schumacher!). But, I thought we were past this, guys. I thought we had reached the new age of the Bat. Nolan resurrected the franchise and turned it into something relevant. Passing off a franchise like this to Zack Snyder is akin to Robert Oppenheimer going up to Gomer Pyle and saying “Hey, I’m mostly done with the atom bomb. Why don’t you finish up?” All we’ll be left with is a smoking crater, and scorched earth. I have made my opinions on Snyder as a director on many occasion…but he has quite successfully earned his nickname “Dick in the Ear” each and every time. He is the fucking worst on every level. Man of Steel was rotting pile of penis. The concept of a sequel makes me nauseous. Like I just saw a rotting pile of penis.

The runner up is well earned in this, the worst of my awards. The Great Gatsby is perhaps the least Batman of all millionaires. He earns all of his money illegally…he does nothing but throw parties…and he dies by being shot. Yep. Nothing Batman about that. Asshole.

BEST MOVIE OF THE SUMMER I WROTE ABOUT

Winner: The World’s EndRunner-Up: World War Z

Has a beer every been so strong that it burns a hole in a fucking sign?

This is some epic poetry shit right here.

Clarification is required. These are not the two best movies of the summer. In fact, especially the runner up, the quality best known as ‘goodness’ has barely a tenuous relationship with this duo. However, these were the two movies of the summer that I enjoyed the most (that I wrote about). Since we as a society have had the surgical addition of our new iAppendages, the concept of not glancing at one’s phone every three seconds is akin to self-castration. Why would you do it? Therefore, we have become guilty of addiction. At least Google is doing half the work for us with its new G-glasses or whatever. We don’t even have to look away! Just through! Man, imagine what that world would be like if we saw the world only through the lens of Google. I mean, every time we tried looking for any information, we’d go through Google…or trying to find our way back home…Google might even invade our movies! Oh…wait…

Anyway, as I was saying, these two films succeeded in delivering the impossible. I didn’t look at my phone once. For World War Z it was purely due to early-onset rigor mortis, my knuckles white with tension as they practically ripped the theater chair armrests from their sockets. The World’s End, however, earns the top place on this, the second most coveted Mooney Award (after Most Batman of course) because the film kept me locked into its content at every moment. If I were to glance away from the screen for even a millisecond, I might miss a micro-joke tossed into the mis en scene, a line of such palpable hilarity that I might vomit at its very suggestion. Therefore, I held onto every ounce of that film. And, to be fleetingly sincere for one moment in my life, to let the real world melt away into a memory for a meager two hour span was more than I can ever wish for. There is no way to hit the off button on my near-schizophrenic obsession with movie construction, forcing my enjoyment of a movie to devolve into a clinical dissection of its moving parts. I could disappear into The World’s End. I only drooled over its detailed genius after the fact. For those two hours, I was in another land. A land of Smashy Smashy Egg People, pubs and big lamps fucking off. Bravo, The World’s End for charging where the trilogy had never had the impetus to before. Also, good job World War Z for not being the bucket of old elephant-taint we all thought you would be. Way to hustle.

Actually Best Movie of the Summer I Couldn’t Write About Because My Girlfriend Fell Asleep and We Never Got Around to Seeing it Again

Winner: Much Ado About Nothing; Runner-Up: The Spectacular Now

I don't know about you, but I ONLY go scuba diving with a full martini glass.

I don’t know about you, but I ONLY go scuba diving with a full martini glass.

So…Amelia and I have this chronic issue. We sleep. Hard. I’m not kidding. I’m talking as hard as John MacClane dies, we sleep. Maybe double that amount. When I sleep, it is more akin to rehearsals for decomposition than replenishing rest. I become an immovable lump of flesh. Seriously, and this is true, my apartment once began to burn down and my friends were unable to wake me to drag me outside. And then I burned to death. Well, not really. But you get my point. Over my travels through the universe, searching for a better (or, at least, pretty much equal) other half, I seem to have discovered the only human on planet Earth more likely to sleep through her own demise. When we went to see Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing, both of us giggling with our virginal Shakespeare boners tucked discretely into our belts, Amelia lasted about twenty minutes into the 10pm showing before setting sail for the Land of Nod on the SS PTFO. I, however, engorged myself on the glittering and near-perfect micro-budgeted adaptation from the man who personally murdered cinematic subtlety with a sextet of muscled heroes. When we left, Amelia was furious. And I mean seven-levels-of-Inferno-pissed that she had missed it. As the dutiful boyfriend, and ignorant of the pains of immolation, I tossed some gasoline on that fire by exclaiming, “OMG IT WAS SO GOOD”. I was refused a chance to post an article until she had finally seen it. Well…time came and time went and that trek to the Century Landmark became a thing of wilted dreams. The stunted beginnings of my deftly crafted opinions were left gathering dust in my ‘drafts’ section, begging to see the light of the Internet day. So, here it is, what I have of that article:

Much Ado About Nothing (2012) – Joss Whedon (Dir.), Alexis Denisof, Amy Acker, Fran Kranz, Clark Gregg, Nathan Fillion, Reed Diamond, Jillian Morgese, Sean Maher, Tom Lenk

Oh the Century Landmark theatre. What a delightful place. This little gem, held aloft above the questionable antics of the AVEDA beauty school, a hidden sparkle in lodged in the bleached anus of Clark and Diversey, is the only ‘Art House’ cinema in the non-terrible sections of Chicago (aka, not downtown). This is the place where I have delighted in numerous filmic morsels, from the haunting and grotesque White Ribbon from Haneke to Aronofsky’s white-bitch-be-cray epic Black Swan to the endlessly charming Moonrise Kingdom, this place is the antidote to the poison that is the increasingly cyanic business of 3D/RPX/FUBAR BS subsuming all things of even tepid quality. As summer film puffs its chest and shrinks its testes, we are offered a cavalcade of mediocre bombast, a tidal wave of unnecessary spectacle with a rotten core. Scripts have devolved into a sort of See Spot Run anthology of idiocy, riddled with more stage direction than dialogue to the point that they might as well be adapted from a Beckett Play Without Words. Therefore, there couldn’t be a greater breath of fresh air than a minimalist comedy using words provided by one of the most beloved writers of all time. That’s right, Joss Whedon. I mean Shakespeare. Sorry. Shakespeare.

Much Ado About Nothing tells the tale of two barbed single friends who, whenever they meet, spend pretty much the entirety of the time raking each other through witty verbal brutality while their friends and family look on with more eye rolls than an optometrists bakery. Recently returned from a war where nobody died (yes, this kind of absurdity exists in the plays of Shakespeare), Benedick, Claudio and Don Pedro have decided to put away their swords and unsheathe their most sacred weapons during a month-long frolic at the house of Leonato in Messina. If you haven’t read the play or, at least, looked up the Cliff Notes during high school because you undoubtedly had to read this ‘problem comedy’ at some point, none of this will make any sense. Claudio wants to hump Hero’s brains out…by way of marriage and, while the wedding is in its preparatory form, decides to hook up the two insufferable wits, Benedick (Alexis “Husband of Alison Hannigan” Denisof) and Leonato’s cousin Beatrice (an excellent Amy Acker). It’s the original ‘Will They? Won’t They?’ Tensions run high as the booze flows fast. Will Don Pedro’s inexplicably evil bastard brother Don John break up the wedding? Will Benedick fall for Beatrice? Will Nathon Fillion show up at some point?

SPOILER ALERT: Read the fucking play, you illiterate swine.

Aaaaaaaaaaaand that’s as far as I got. But, believe me, I laughed harder at this film than I did during anything else this summer season. There is one line in the final scene that almost made me, a grown man, request an adult diaper. Honestly, you should rent this shard of literary excellence and cinematic nonchalance immediately. It doesn’t tone down, dumb down or Whedon down any of the play. Amy Acker offers perhaps the best female lead performance of the season because, well, it’s the summer, so women are more likely to be seen and not humanized.

The other pick is the enigmatic indie, The Spectacular Now. It was a good movie, viewed on a quiet evening in the throw-back splendor of the Logan Movie Theater. It’s a problematic drama, exploring teen alcoholism, abusive relationships, and the dangers of codependent young love. Perhaps one day I’ll get around to writing an article on the film, though it struck some fairly vulnerable nerves relating to the ghosts of high school past… I will say, throughout the length of this quiet and thoughtful treatise on dependency and addiction, Pacific Rim was playing at full tilt in the next theater. Every crash of metal, every riff of the guitar, every flash of pubescent and puerile vicarious obliteration seeped through the paper-thin walls and derailed the somber tension. It was a bizarre juxtaposition of the reality of teenager inner life versus the escapism that generally ensues. It was weird, unsettling, and helpfully distracting from this composition of misery that was The Spectacular Now. See it. Or don’t. But it’s the sort of movie that has a right place and a right time. Right now…it feels like a blade in the gut. But that’s what candy is for. There is no coincidence that I ended up seeing Pacific Rim a week later in that same theater. Escapism is a drug whose addiction is only society acceptable due to its epidemical prevalence. I’ll take another hit. Always.

Most Hateful Towards Women

Winner: Pretty Much Everything…; Runner Up: Did You Read the Winner?

That’s right. Once more the heightened temperature brought us the cavalcade of overblown masculinity harshly present every summer. Granted, we didn’t have a Michael Bay movie to smack us with the hard end of a dick, but we certainly had Man of Steel. It seems that, day after day, we are offered more movies that, if not outrightly despise women, carefully ignore their existence as though the entire gender is simply a Forest Whittaker-esque servant lining the rooms of our bombastic and adolescent power fantasies. They waltz into the spotlight only when needed, their entire presence only determined by the male characters who ‘need a romantic counterpart’. In fact, almost every film on this list failed the exceedingly simple Bechdel Test (a movie passes if two or more named female characters have a scene without men and are not talking about men). Why don’t we go down the roster of movies I reviewed and grade them accordingly for how many women A) were in the movie; B) had conversations with people lacking penises C) worked on a movie. SPOILERS: the results are depressing.

This is how this award makes me feel.

The Great Gatsby: Okay, firstly, it’s a love story. It’s got Daisy Buchanan and Jordan Baker. Almost half of the five main characters are female. Not too bad. Does it pass the Bechdel Test? Nope. If so, then barely. Jordan and Daisy might have a scene together but seeing as it’s Tobey “Dopey” Maguire narrative, he’s always there, like your overbearing mother at a sleepover. Also, granted it was written in the 20s-30s, the main woman is merely an object of affection, unburdened by the onerous heft of things like a ‘personality’ or ‘dramatic agency’. Director? Male. Writers? All male (duh). Grade: C-

Iron Man 3: Eh. This one has a couple of female characters, one of them being the only time G-Palt is not nauseating to watch. Yes, there is a scene between her and another female doctor that technically knocks this into the ‘pass’ category for Bechdel. However, in terms of pure screen time, ladies barely have a second to themselves. This is about RDJ. This is ALL about RDJ. I appreciated the prevalence of female soldiers on the opposing team. That was nice. But, all in all, too little too late. How many male leads? 7. How many female leads? 2. Director? Male. Writers? Male. Grade: B-

Star Trek Into Darkness: Where the first movie made sure that Uhura was well-respected for her language abilities and her sassy attitude, here her essence is reduced to nothing more than a clinging-shrewish pain in the ass. She also only gets ONE chance to do the thing that she has been hired to do, you know, speak Klingon…and she fucks it up. It was probably because the blood rushed to her uterus too quickly saving her thinking organ from having to do too much work. Also, Alice Eve’s breasts are dropped into the movie. Why? So she can be in her underwear for no reason whatsoever. How many male leads? 9. How many female leads? 2. Director? Male. Writers? All male. Does it pass the Bechdel Test? Fuck no! Grade: D-

I wish I could have done this without a skull fracture.

Fast & Furious 6: Okay, this one is a shocker. Yes, this franchise is famed for knocking the testosterone levels up to 11 on all counts…but that goes for the ladies as well. We don’t have any weeping damsels in distress or floundering flaps of feminine flesh flaunted for their floopy bits. We have Gina fucking Carano punching Michelle Rodriguez in the fucking face. Does that mean it passes the Bechdel Test? HELL YES. A fist fight is a conversation, of sorts. And there ain’t no penis involved. Granted, the only adonis here who doesn’t manage to miraculously walk away from every auto accident unscathed is a woman…but that’s required for the ret-conned franchise reach-around that occurs in the final scene. How many male leads? 7. How many female leads? 4. Director? Male. Writers? Male. Still, it’s astonishing that the Fast and the Furious has set a higher bar for gender roles than Star Trek. Grade: B+

This Is the End: Um…do I need to say anything? Emma Watson shows up for like five minutes and the rest of the characters spend the film talking about dicks, semen, gay people, and pussies. Also, Watson is there for two seconds before someone mentions rape. Shudder. How many male leads? All of them. How many female leads? Do the math. Director? Guess. Writers? Really? Are we going to do this, guys? Grade: F

Man of Steel: Okay, this one, especially coming from the porn-addled mind of Zack “The Masturbator” Snyder, actually holds up okay. We have Amy Adams as an excellent version of Lois Lane, both confident and driven without anyone brandishing the dreaded ‘B’ word (and it ain’t ‘bunions’, people). Diane Lane is still as foxy as ever…though she doesn’t really get to do anything but be in trouble occasionally. Also…there’s that one bad guy Kryptonian Israeli lady. So…there’s some variety. While the rest of the meatheaded movie was about as intelligent as a passing of gas, the gender politics are not as abysmal as you’d assume. Does it pass the Bechdel Test? Perhaps. If so, then barely. There are no memorable scenes between female leads with Henry “I Want to Lick Him” Cavill being around. How many male leads? 6. How many female leads? 4. Director? So male I want to put him in a post host. Writers? Maler than Norman. Grade: B-

World War Z: Granted, the entire film is about Brad Pitt globetrotting, so any characters he meets are around for about five minutes before becoming zombie chow. However, his wife and daughters are essential characters as is his Israeli bodyguard. Now, if you want to say a two second conversation between mother and young daughter passes the Bechdel Test, go ahead. Otherwise, Pitt takes up too much film to allow any room for anyone else, gender aside. How many male leads? Well, like 2 or 10, depending on how you classify lead. If they survive longer than ten minutes, then it’s 2. How many female leads? 2-4 if you count children as humans. I don’t. Director? Male. Writers? All of them male. All 3000 of them. Grade: C+

Despicable Me 2: This is an odd one. We have the three little girls that Gru cares for, though, in this movie, they are about as essential to the plot as my little toe is essential to my sex life (not very, just to be clear). The only other female presences are Kristin Schaal’s bemusing and whorish crazy date lady and Kristen Wiig’s almost schizophrenic, incompetently ultra-competent spy. Yes, this is a cartoon so reality isn’t really under fire here…but come on. Do all the women have to be cardboard cutouts of humans? How many male leads? Between 5 and 2,000,000 (if you count the minions who are the real stars of the show). How many female leads? 5. It mildly passes the Bechdel Test when the girls converse after Gru has put them to bed. Directors? Male. Writers? Male. Grade: B

Pacific Rim: Oh lordy. After Mr. Del Toro’s excellent and lady-filled Pan’s Labyrinth, you’d think he would keep the trend going. Apparently not. Pacific Rim has as much vagina as a bachelor party: one, and it belongs to a lady who really doesn’t seem to want to be there. Yes, we get glimpses of that one russian lady…but Rinku Kinkuchi is the only lady in this massive expolathon. So, yeah, no Bechdel pass here, guys. Sorry. How many male leads? 7. How many female leads? 1. Director? Male. Writer? Same guy. So, yeah, male. Grade: D

My impression of me after Man of Steel.

The Conjuring: Finally! Something with some ladies! Yes, due to the frustration of being based on a true story, this little ditty had to fill its ranks almost exclusively with the woman folk. From Vera Farmiga to the eternally abused Lily Taylor, this is all-lady. Granted, those ladies get beaten, possessed, assaulted, scared and puked on…but this is a free country. Every woman has the right to be possessed by a homicidal demon witch from Rhode Island. It’s Susan B. Anthony’s dream! How many male leads? 4. How many female leads? 7. Director? Male. Writers? Male as well. Sigh. Grade: A-

The World’s End: Another poor showing. Yes, this tale of the journey through the darkness of male adulthood doesn’t have much room for the ladies. While intelligence throbs through the main artery of this piece, gender politics do not. We have c-words and b-words and p-words tossed out all over the place with impunity. Hopefully, soon, they’ll have the courage to include a few more X chromosomes in the proceedings. How many male leads? 8. How many female leads? 1. Technically, it passes the Bechdel Test…but a woman talking to lady robots doesn’t really count, does it? Director? Male. Writers? Male. Grade: D+

Elysium: Here is the oddest of the bunch. While there are only a few ladies in the mix, the lead enemy of the film was originally written for a man but then adapted to be female by none other than Ms. Filmic Gender Equality herself, Jodie Foster. Without her presence, this clattering, flashing, jumble of epilepsy-inducing trash would have been sucked up its own masculine asshole. It, again, barely passes the Bechdel Test when Jodie Foster tells the nurse lady to stop attempting to save her. Yes, one word. That’s all these ladies get these days. How many male leads? 5. How many female leads? 2. Director? Male. Writer? Male. Grade: C+

This is how this makes me feel always.

Isn’t it sad? Granted, those are only the movies I wrote about, but as a purely anecdotal cross section of modern blockbuster theater, statistically, this is a bad situation. Of course it’s fine to have a movie all about guys. That’s whatever. Yes, Glengarry Glen Ross is a thing. It doesn’t mean that those movies are diminished in value. The issue is the clear and painful trend that has subsumed all Hollywood filmmaking. Women are supporters. They interact with male characters. They help. The reason so many films fail the Bechdel test is solely because the main characters are almost exclusively male. World War Z is a classic case. No matter how many strong female characters he runs into, they are almost the ‘guest star’ of the act, never crossing paths with anyone in the past. The systemic issue is one that truly needs to change. It seems as though when a movie has a female lead character, it’s labeled a women’s movie and so dies the death of inanity at the hands of focus groups who assume they know what women like. What greater indicator of this plague than the fact that Snow White was adapted to make THE HUNTSMAN the main character? Seriously, guys? The only movie this summer that arrived with a plethora of X-chromosomes that was not considered a chick-flick was The Heat…which is fine…though the movie looked like nothing more than a by-the-numbers screwball comedy. Maybe ladies have to start with the shitty genres before working their way up the budget food chain. Oh well. Maybe next year I’ll make this list and the average grade won’t be so abysmal. Maybe it won’t. Maybe I’ll end up stabbing my eyes out during Batman vs. Superman. One can only hope.

How could something so beautiful end so horribly?

How could something so beautiful end so horribly?

Bats, it’s been a good run. We really need to look back over the years and understand where we started and where we have arrived. Back then…we were young, you only 50 and me only 2. I mean, I knew there was an age difference. People said we couldn’t be together, that I was ‘too young for you’. But that didn’t stop me stealing your VHS-card and spending a heavenly two hours cuddled up next to you in my basement. My love for you scared me. You also scared me. Literally scared me. No joke, that part where Jack Nicholson falls in the big vat of green stuff made me terrified of pea soup forever more. Fucking terrifying.

Now, I will admit, we’ve had our ups and downs. You had that weird period in the 90s where you experimented way too much. I don’t think we’ll ever be able to forget the atrocities of Bane and Poison Ivy. But…I forgave you. There was nothing you could do. I mean, with a man like Joel Schumacher forcing you to do things…unspeakable things. I’m sorry. At least…at least we had the Animated Series. That was a constant. A perfect, unending stream of adoration to which I could cling, my anchor in the storm, my kiss from a rose on the gray. We went through so much, you and I. I could never leave behind Batman Returns…how could I not love you for that? Clowns? Danny Devito? Michelle Pfiffer in a skin-tight suit? You gave me Christopher Walken in a bow-tie. What more could a girl wish for?

But then you were gone. I should have left you. They told me there was no way to return from George Clooney…no way to escape the gravitational force of Chris O’Donnell’s and Alicia Silverstone’s tanking careers. I let you go. I removed you from my life. Yes, I will admit, on stormy nights I’d curl up with the box sets of the Animated Series and cry for the days of yore. The days when we were happy. BEFORE Jim Carrey in a green lycra suit.

Then, one day, you came back, from outer space and you found me here with this sad look upon my face. Out of all the movieplex’s in all the world, you had to stroll into mine. You were different; you were new. You had a new man. Chris Nolan and Chris Bale were at your side and you had changed for the better. You seemed happy, in between the horrendously depressing storytelling. You showed me wonders…the Scarecrow, Heath Ledger, Bane’s stupid fucking voice. It was a beautiful dream from which I never wished to wake. And, with the ending of the trilogy, I knew it was over once more. It never could last. No matter how much I begged. So I cried. I let you go. I went through every stage of Bat-grief, from Bat-Denial (“they’ll make another!”) to Bat-Anger (“Fuck you! You can’t leave me!”) to Bat-Bargaining (“I’ll give you anything you want. I’ll even let JGL be Robin! Please!”) to Bat-pression (liquor bottles everywhere, “remember Batman and Robin? I want to die”) to finally Bat-ceptance (“At least Zack Snyder never made a Batman movie!”).

And now this. This. You come to me with this? Talk about the straw that broke the camel’s back. And by straw, I mean Ben Affleck (“Don’t put me on that camel, you quee-ah!”). You came back into my life, after I accepted you were gone…WITH THIS? Who the fuck do you think you are? Come on. I could handle Burton. I liked Nolan. I even forgave you for Joel “Phantom of My Anus-Opera” Schumacher. But ZACK SNYDER? Do you know how he’ll treat you? Did you even see Man of Steel? You don’t need me to tell you this is mistake. You think you’re happy with your $200 million dollar budget and your Frank Miller based script. But you’re not. Snyder will change you. He’ll make you a monster. Affleck is only the beginning. Sure, you think, “Argo was great!”. DID YOU EVER WATCH REINDEER GAMES?

This is your new man? What is wrong with you, Bats? Why do you hate yourself?

This is your new man? What is wrong with you, Bats? Why do you hate yourself?

So, my love, this is the end. It’s over. I can never expect to get you back. I’ll see your Batman vs. Superman: Big Swinging Dongs Edition. And I’ll hate myself for it. But, I suppose, I’ve let you go. It’s over. It’s time for you to move on and make your own choices. Who am I to accuse your new boyfriend of suffering from acute dick-in-the-ear? Who am I to say that Affleck is a flabby has-been who is only truly talented when behind the camera. People said the same thing about Keaton. Sort of.

I’m saying it because it’s true. Inside of us, we both know you belong with Snyder. You’re part of his work, the thing that keeps him going. If that franchise leaves the ground and you’re not with him to make The Justice League, you’ll regret it. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon, and for the rest of your life.

We’ll always have The Animated Series. We didn’t have it, we’d lost it, until you came back to Batman Begins. We got it back last Dark Knight.

Batman, I’m no good at being noble, but it doesn’t take much to see that the problems of three little people don’t amount to a hill of kryptonite in this crazy world. Someday you’ll understand that.

Here’s looking at you, Bats.

It's over. For real this time.

It’s over. For reals this time.

[He takes off into the night, his iconic bat joining with Superman’s S, a symbol of hope and future. I watch him go in silence, knowing what I’ve lost. I turn to Joss Whedon and The Avengers at my side.]

Avengers, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

The winds of a distant winter are rising. Cold fronts, like chilled custard, are gradually consuming the Midwest and with it Chicago. Those summer dresses that make ladies seem so dishonestly ephemeral are quickly disintegrating to the temporal safety of jeans and sweatpants. The summer is coming to a close and, as Ned Stark would say if he had an issue with premature ejaculations (referring specifically to the archaic definition pertaining to elocution), Fall Is Coming. Finally, I’m able to cast aside my vibrant colors in favor of dour earth tones. I no longer need to repel the incessant whines of “Andrew, you should try shorts, you’d look adorable” because it wouldn’t be adorable, it would be as horrifying as looking into the Ark of the Covenant, doesn’t anyone understand I AM EXTREMELY INSECURE ABOUT MY PASTY LEGS.

Well, for a Summer of Film, like any good night of sex, there is a shit load of build up and anticipation, a middling execution with some high points (and seriously low ones) and finally a required and sleepy denouement. This is that sleepiness. A decomposition, if you will, a digestion, that special walk that you take after Thanksgiving Dinner in the hope that burning about fifty calories will offset that Herculean gorge-fest that was that five course monstrosity. Perhaps these will take the form of awards and, if they do, they will be more important than the fucking Oscars (because, honestly, what isn’t?). Perhaps they will take the form of rants. Perhaps the form of an elaborate and labyrinthine puzzle, dragging you through the depths of your own psyche, revealing grotesque truths about the human condition before finally revealing what I actually thought about a shitty film franchise. Perhaps. I haven’t decided yet.

Oh Summer of 2012, what a beast you were. You had such dazzling highs and such confounding lows. You were filled with aimless, drunken wanderings through the streets of Chicago, ending with confused mornings waking up in puddles of Dunkin Donuts breakfast sandwiches (true story). You were riddled with dates and drunken make-outs. Midnight showings and Bat-a-thons. You were epic and understated at once. Much like my fifth grade math teacher, I entered you a boy and a left you a man (not a true story). I have gained some loved ones, and lost some (you will be missed, Donnie. New York doesn’t deserve you). I went from living with four wonderful and crazed souls to living alone. And I saw both The Dark Knight Rises and Prometheus. I will be forever changed. So, now that I’ve arbitrarily decided to structure this like a rewards show, lets get this thing on the road. Without further ado…here are…

ANDREW’S SUMMER MOVIE AWARDS 2012!

Welcome, welcome ladies and gents. It’s been a wacky and wild roller coaster this summer, hasn’t it, Jane?

(Insert painfully unwitty, overly-enthusiastic response from once-pretty co-host whose face looks like it’s had more nips and tucks than a fucking French pastry)

Hilarious, Jane. You’re so on point. Well, let’s get to it!

Most Mediocre Movie I’m Glad I Missed

Winner: The Amazing Spiderman; Runner Up: The Borne Legacy

OH NO! MECHA-GOJIRA! Nope…my mistake. It’s just boring.

So, I know these were both on my list of “Movies I Will See and Hate Myself“, but guess what, other than a few noted exceptions, this was not a summer of self-harm. I read reviews of Spiderman. My friend told me it was, and I quote, “Totally Fine.” You know what? Fuck totally fine. I don’t want totally fine. This is the summer. If I want ‘totally fine’, I’d be in January. This is the time for RPX/3D/IMAX/ VHS/ADHD/CPS/SIDS to melt your mutherfucking face off. If I’m not feeling some facial phase-changes, then it has no business being in the summer movie line-up. I like Andrew Garfield, but it was so infuriatingly clear in every ad, clip and interview he was trying to be a total badass. You know what? No matter how many times you shove a lightning bolt up a corpse’s ass, you don’t get reanimation, you just get the suffocating smell of cooked, rancid meat and charred hair. My Peter Parker will always be the animated one that awkwardly fought the Green Goblin on Saturday mornings…and then got all weird and sexy with Madame Web and…well…let’s not talk about that. Also, The Borne Legacy, I heard Jeremy Renner was wasted. For that, I say, you deserve a penis in the ear. That is the one place no one likes a penis. Well, I’m sure someone does. Anyway, it’s invasive and unpleasant. You’re welcome.

Most Pissed Off I Got That Nobody Would Drink a Fifth of Jack With Me and Watch

Winner: Battleship, Runner-up: Piranha 3DD

YOU GUYS, IT LOOKS SO GOOD! SERIOUSLY! YOU GUYS!

Seriously, like, seriously guys. Why would NOBODY watch Battleship with me? Of course it’s moronic. Of course it’s about as worthy of sense as Gary Busey on the third day of an acid binge. Of course Liam Neeson will cash a paycheck. But still…COME ON. I heard there was an old person montage! And Rihanna acting! And Tim Riggins on a Boat! (For the record, I do not know, nor do I care, who Tim Riggins is. He has a cool name. Discussion over). I tried, time and again, to Shanghai someone to sneak a bottle of bourbon into the movie theater with me and drink every time someone said the words “Ship”, “God” or “Hey, isn’t that the guy from True Blood?” This summer has been seriously lacking some Transformers, over-the-top, misogyny-riddled, nonsensical action and I need my shit-fix. Why did you all abandon me? WHY?

Piranha gets honorable mention because, honestly, it’s a Piranha movie and those cannot be missed. At the same time, I heard it sucked massive elephantitis-balls. Like, globe-sized, Jack-and-the-Beanstalk-style giant testicles. And not in the good way. More in the, “just got back from rowing the Atlantic ocean and am suffering from about 12 different fungal issues in the nether-regions…do you still want to do this?” way.

Most Forgettable Movie of the Summer

Winner: I can’t remember; Runners-Up: Men in Black III, Brave

It’s that one movie…with the thing…and that guy, from that other movie…

It’s only logical that the least memorable movie was one that literally forgot its existence. This has happened numerous times. Some of the more memorable least-memorable films would be…um…that one with the cops…a black one and a white one…maybe the one with a scary thing in the something or other…or when that one person was on trial for something and somebody was trying to do something with the…it was by John Grisham, I know that. So, here’s to you, the least memorable movie of the summer! I might have written an article about you. Maybe. Maybe I didn’t because you were so fucking forgettable that my brain forcefully rejected your existence the moment I left the theater/my living room. Not because you were bad. No, bad movies deserve remembrance. You have committed the worst crime of all existence: you have stolen time out of my life that, not only will never be returned, but I cannot recollect. You’re a black hole of blandness. A vortex of vapidity. A nebula of nebul-‘eh’. So, movie that was positively pointless, thank you.

The other two runner-ups are nearly as blameful. Men in Black III was fine, without a capital ‘f’ because it doesn’t deserve such frills. It was a movie constructed by the corporate machine, placed in the hands of jaded, half-spent celebrity and given nothing to do other than make a really amusing joke about Andy Warhol. Otherwise, the film was so inoffensive and uninteresting that I literally forgot I saw it until I looked back at my articles written for this summer. And, Brave, you just stick that fucking bear tail between your legs (do bears have tails? I can’t remember. NOT THE POINT). You’re a Pixar, not some poxy by-the-numbers bullshit excreted by Lionsgate. You have a legacy to uphold! Now, yes, I enjoyed the film just fine (there’s that word again! I know grammatically the sentence is incorrect, but the issue is the same. Oh US parlance.) Semantics aside, Brave attempted a few things and succeeded. The issue was one of scale. I return to the face-melting essential nature of summer film. Wall-E fucking sublimated my entire head. Up transformed me into a sobbing, weeping, sniveling husk of mush. Brave? Brave made me shrug my shoulders and go “It wasn’t terrible.” Fuck that noise. I expect more from you people. I expect my very dreams to be haunted with your cartoonish mugs. I expect my bowels to loosen during the opening credits. I expect…

Holy shit. I just remembered what the most forgettable movie was. It was…wait…gone again. Oh well.

Most Good Movie Until a Super-Zombie Showed Up

Winner: Prometheus; Runner-Up: Um…Prometheus?

This is much more accurate depiction of that movie: people doing things that bear no relation to other things

You know how it is in the morning. You wake up, make yourself a cup of coffee, discover an alien planet that probably instigated all of evolution on planet earth, take off your fucking helmet because you “think it’s oxygen” and everything is forgivable and fine until a fucking SUPER ZOMBIE jumps out of nowhere and wrecks every non-named character? Know what I’m sayin’? No? That’s never happened to you? Well, Prometheus, I would like to thank you for obliterating the last twinkle of hope I held for modern science fiction. Thank you for taking such a deliciously dense, fertile, deep and compelling premise and the injecting it with Michael Bay cinema-herpes-riddled spunk. Much like the chaos-black stuff that infected and fundamentally transformed your characters, so did this Bay-Semen attempt to latch its genetic material onto yours. And, in self-same fashion, instead of becoming stronger, better and more interesting, you just became a fucking super-zombie, roaring like an idiot, throwing people this way and that, and eventually being crushed under the wheel of good fanboy taste. Yes, Prometheus, you are a dumb asshole. Not only that, but you built my hopes, you promised so much! And yet, as I drew back the veil, ready to place a ring on that finger and pledge my love to you, I instead discover the whale-vaginal, made-up visage of Guy Pearce peering back, Charlize Theron forgetting that human beings are capable of lateral movement and a big white dude giving forced fellatio to a crustacean.

It breaks my heart. It really does. Well, Prometheus, I really want you to be happy. Just…not with me. Bu-bye now.

Most Batman

Winner: The Dark Knight Rises; Runner-up: Moonrise Kingdom

Surprisingly Batman

This was a difficult category to decide. The list of contenders was long and contentious. We were offered an entire platter of Bat-films. Who could forget when the Dark Knight helped that family in Dark Shadows beat the evil witch’s curse? And when Bruce Wayne traveled back in time to help the Union get the silverware past the vampire threat in Abraham Lincoln: I Still Can’t Believe They Made This Movie. And, in one of the more memorable moments of summer film, who would ever lose sight of the iconic scene where the caped crusader gave mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to Judy Dench after a fatal Over-British-Dose in The Best Exotic Marigold HotelUndoubtedly, however, the award for Most Batman goes to The Dark Knight Rises, fearlessly having Batman in as many as six scenes! They did so well to make sure the cape and cowl had its due, featured in a whopping more than three action sequences! It takes a lot of strength, determination and creative prowess to offer so much screen time to an icon of the common imagination so immensely awesome that it naturally eclipses and obscures all sense of nuance and depth. But they did it.

Our runner up may seem like a surprise, especially with movies such as The Avengers which are simply blatant love notes to the amazingness that is Batman. I mean, they deliberately put all these mediocre characters together in an attempt to make some sort of kind-of-decent Comic-Book Voltron, composed entirely of Stan Lee’s penis inner neuroses. And they were completely and utterly successful in their attempts to show that the Dark Knight does indeed rise above the rest. However, Moonrise Kingdom takes the proverbial cake for second-place Most Batman. In fact, it’s one of my favorite origin stories of all time. X-Men: First Class was a campy/sexy mess; Batman Begins only scratched the surface; and Spiderman was about as subtle as a bottle rocket tied to my scrotum. Moonrise Kingdom charts the unlikely tale of a young Bruce Wayne, his family killed before the film even begins, falling for a young weirdo outsider whom we have to assume is Rachel Dawes (again played by Katie Holmes who really looks like she’s aged a lot since the end of TomKat) and running away from his captors (Ed Norton as a pre-police force Commissioner Gordon and Bruce Willis as Mr. Freeze before earning his PhD in ‘cold things’). I tell you, casting Bill Murray as Clayface was inspired and Frances McDormand as Harley Quinn was a stroke of genius. So, I thank you Wes Anderson, for filling in the missing pieces of Bruce’s journey. 

Least Batman

Winner: The AvengersRunners-up: The First Half of Dark Knight Rises, Magic Mike

This movie poster is still dumb.

Ok, I lied about The Avengers being a love note to The Dark Knight Rises. It was, instead, the Beethoven-esque, ovary-busting overture celebrating the eventual and glorious birth of one Mr. Joss “Fucking Finally” Whedon, a man that has been flirting with commercial greatness and total fangirl vomitoria for years. Throughout his career we have been fed tasty morsels of wonderment, from the episode Hush in Buffy season 4 to Serenity. We’ve also been plagued by Alien Resurrection and Joss Whedon fanboys (I’m not going to make any friends saying this, but if ANYONE begins singing Dr. Horrible around me, I will personally gag them and mail them to Nicaragua). The bald/ginger behemoth of pure nerdom has been gestating in a womb of ridiculous female caricatures and self-referential nonsense for years, only to bloom into a snarky, badass epic ball-buster that was The Avengers as well as the beautiful and hilarious send-up of horror films that was Cabin in the Woods. This was, in no uncertain terms, the summer of Whedon. I shall award him the honor of Least Batman because, contractually, the is no fucking way Batman can appear in the Marvel universe and, more importantly, the overall manic tone of The Avengers couldn’t haven’t been further from the Dark Knight’s noir necropolis. So, well done, Avengers. You did us proud.

The runners-up are slightly less Least Batman. First of all, the first half of The Dark Knight Rises does an incredibly admirable job of pretending to be about Batman and yet teasing us constantly with the fact that the caped crusader doesn’t show up for about THREE FUCKING HOURS. Yes, I understand pathos and that this is the first ever Batman movie that is actually about Batman. But c’mon! I want bat-antics (you know what they are because they’re labeled!)! I want gadgets! I want action scenes! I want to see Batman do something that makes my fanboy panties need a serious deep-clean on the ‘Teenage Boy Without a Girlfriend’ Cycle. The other runner-up, a film I did not see, seemed extremely not-Batman. Because, if the sixties taught us anything, there is nothing gay about Batman. Magic Mike looked super homo. Also, Matthew McConaughy is like anti-Batman. Not in that he’s something awesome like the Joker. No, he’s like buttered toast that falls on the ground butter-side down. He’s like getting a hang-nail while cutting lemons. He’s like Halle Berry’s Catwoman.

Very not-Batman indeed.

Best Movie of the Summer

Winner: Moonrise Kingdom; Runners-up: The Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises

So surprising. Yes, it was the best. Deal with it.

Commence ‘Serious Face’ (TM). Yes, my favorite movie of the summer was indeed Moonrise Kingdom. Honestly, that movie cut me deeper than anything I’ve seen in some time. Deliriously funny, oddly dark and so whimsical that my testicles almost bloomed into Mumford and Sons and played a pop-folk concept in the middle of nowhere. It is probably the most entertaining modern tale of what it’s like to be a child I’ve seen in years. It was truthfully the most affecting thing I’ve seen in a while, both due to its examination of the child’s experience and because it makes you REALLY uncomfortable about how close to naked the little girl gets. *AWKWARD* That aside, thank you, Mr. Anderson, for serving us the same dish every single time and that same dish is absolutely fucking delicious.

Honorable mentions go out to the already lauded and fellated  The Avengers and Dark Knight Rises. So, yes, congrats, good movies. You’ll probably be the best movies I’ll see for a while. Unless someone FINALLY watches Battleship with me.

Movie I Wish I Had Been Drunker For

Winner: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, Runner-up: Men in Black III

This poster is the most disconcerting thing I have seen since…well, this movie.

Seriously. My head was already fucking spinning, like that silver-coated axe wielded by our less-than-fortunate-looking 16th President of ours. So many things branded into my memory would have been offered the forgiving haziness of Jack Daniel-instigated inebriation. Perhaps Dominic Cooper’s horrific accent wouldn’t have pained me so. Perhaps I would have chocked up the absurdity of certain scenes to my waning control over basic motor skills. Perhaps I might have excused the nonsensical nature of the, well, the everything. Maybe Temur Nab-I’m-Not-Going-to-Look-up-How-To-Spell-it-Cus-Fuck-That-Guy-bakov would have been praised in my review for creating Inception-like complexity within his work. Instead, I had to watch it with a shitty Starbucks Latte in one hand (sorry for the redundancy of ‘Shitty’ and ‘Starbucks’) and my crumbling self-worth in the other. At least I had candy, but that can only do so much.

The runner-up here was Men in Black III solely because, if I had created a drinking game where the only rule was ‘Drink every time Will Smith is purposefully non-threatening to white people’ I might have been so drunk by the final scene that I might have involuntarily slept through the utterly hackneyed, inorganic and confusingly weep-tastic conclusion. But, hindsight is 20/20.

Movie I’m Really Upset I Missed

Winner: Beasts of the Southern Wild, Runner-up: Battleship

Come back! I can see Battleship another weekend!

So, I heard Beasts of the Southern Wild was one of the coolest, prettiest, most exhilarating films of the year. Its trailer had me crumpling my blanket in shoving into my mouth in fear that I might swallow my tongue due to a sudden wave of Cute-Black-Child-itis. Of course, I can’t really write anything about it and I don’t have a good reason for why I didn’t see it. I suppose time simply slipped away from me. Hours flew by, days even, and soon the only screen in Chicago playing its beauty allowed it slip away, quietly into the cinematic aether. And here I am, complaining about pieces of shit portraying presidents as Sarah Michelle Gellar’s only claim to fame and missing movies starring Rihanna as, well, a human being. Here I am missing true art and complaining that everything is decomposing into a massive stew of imaginative fecal matter. Here I am. I wish I had seen it, experienced it, written about it. Perhaps I’d be a different person, instead of a bitter jerk fuming over Michael Bay’s legacy. Perhaps. Lessons for the future, I suppose. A cautionary tale how lamenting about the terrible clouds our understanding of the good. Aye me.

The runner-up is Battleship. All pathos aside I REALLY WANTED TO SEE BATTLESHIP.

Most Hilarious Response to One of My Reviews I Have Ever Received

Winner: Fahrenheit 451; Runner-up: Batman Returns

So, this is the Internet. Though it is filled with wonderful things such as my blog, the blog of Raving Mad Scientists (check those ladies out, they are awesome), Netflix and every porn site ever, it is also home to less savory things. Like Goatsie (google it) or /b/ or every porn site ever. In expanding my writing to the World Wild Web I have braced myself for accidentally tapping into the vein of anonymous hatred that sneaks surreptitiously between sites, and allowing a deluge of trolling and nastiness. Luckily, I have not actually experienced any of this…yet. I have had a couple of amusing moments. My favorite of which was in response to my severely uninformed (and openly so) analysis of Truffaut’s Fahrenheit 451:

“Well….I guess you gave it a good college try. You missed it on some of the facts (Wikipedia isn’t the end all and be all of information). Actually, Truffaut had originally set Werner to play the role of the captain (eventually played by Cyril Cusack – father-in-law to Jeremy Irons). When Stamp bowed out, Werner did not want to take over the role of Montag — but Truffaut pleaded and cajoled (they had worked so well together in Jules and Jim). Werner (in real life) experienced Kristalnacht in Vienna and saw more than his share of book burning. He had a hard time with the way he felt Truffaut ‘triviliazed’ the book burning scenes. Half way through filming, the two would not even talk to each other and had to use go-betweens to get their messages across. Werner wanted to add more sympathy to the character of Montag than Truffaut did, etc. etc. I completely agree with you about how miscast Julie Christie was. Unfortunately, at that time, she was the biggest thing in box office and the film would not have been funded without her in it.” ~film fan

Thanks for the info, ‘film fan’! I do take your criticism about lack of research beyond Wikipedia and offer, in return, a gif!

And in not quite close second, after my Batman Returns piece:

“Burton himself has said that Catwoman wasn’t meant to be supernatural but ambiguous and have that whole 9 lives vibe and motif going on. When she is pushed out the window (a brilliant scene “actually, it’s a lot like that!”) she hits at least 2 awnings and falls into a mount of snow. And she only falls about 6 stories (Jackie Chan did a similar stunt for real in Project A). After this she has a pyschotic break and develops a new personality not bound by morals or society. A force of nature. The cats wander around her as they live in the alley and are suspicious and hungry. The backflipping and martial arts skilled are explained in an earlier draft when she tells Bruce about how she was a gymnastics champion as a kid and took many self defence classes but her teacher told her she wasn’t any good as her mind wasn’t clear. She replies that it’s clear now.

But a great review, I enjoyed the read.”

That was from the enigmatically monikered ‘G’. Thank you for the compliment, it will not be forgotten. But seriously, that is some serious Burton-Knowledge. All I can say is:

In all honesty, thank you for reading, all of you. I love comments. Of all kinds. I met my internet friends that way. And seriously, we all know these blogs are an attempt to find people throughout the universe that aren’t related to you who might like something you wrote. Fleeting passes of digital connection, helping us avoid feeling the crushing weight of loneliness if only for a moment.

Also, if you want to call me on my shit, bring it. I HAVE SO MANY GIFS TO WHIP OUT.

Well, now we must wait for the Oscars to collectively jerk off our tear ducts in an attempt for studios to garner those self-congratulatory golden dildos. Get ready for movies with Abraham Lincoln not fighting vampires. Movies that make you cry, though you keep telling yourself that you’re watching trite nonsense. Also, The mutherfucking Hobbit. I’m only entirely excited. And now…a contentious list of megachiroptean action movies from best to worst.

All Batman Movies Ranked from Best to Worst with Comparisons to Things that Get you Drunk

The Dark Knight – Like an aged Scotch, smokey, mysterious and surprising. With a dead guy in it.

The Dark Knight Rises – Hendricks Gin. Solid, delicious and makes a summer night worthy of enjoyment.

Batman Returns – Maker’s Mark. Makes you say hilarious things and surprisingly delicious. With hints of Walken.

Batman BeginsA wine. Not fine, but tasty and good with a helping of Neeson. You drink it before it’s done breathing. Like an idiot.

Batman: The Movie – Tequila. Gets you fucking drunk. And maybe a little homosexual.

BatmanAbsinthe (sans Wormwood). You think it’ll be more fun than it was and it tastes vaguely of something made in the mid-eighties but without the fun.

Batman ForeverAbsinthe (con Wormwood). Should be illegal in the States and makes you feel like you are tripping balls. Jim Carrey might appear wearing all green and torment your worst nightmares.

Batman and RobinHomeless Person’s Vomit. Self-explanatory. And it might give you a staph infection.

The Dark Knight Rises (2012) – Christopher Nolan (Dir.), Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Tom Hardy, Marion Cotillard, Anne Hathaway, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Morgan Freeman…let’s be real, pretty much the cast of Inception.

Disclaimer #1: I can be slightly irreverent at times. Well, extremely irreverent most of the time. In this ‘review’ I’m going to use harsh language, sarcasm, overly extended metaphors and general jackassery. However, this is purely in the spirit of fun and film criticism. My jokes and nonsense are meant in no way to belittle the horrific events at the midnight screening in Aurora, CO. My thoughts and prayers go to the victims of this tragedy. If you want some light-hearted ribbing/brutal emasculation of a major film franchise, please read on…

Disclaimer #2: Another one. Sorry! Well, I’m not sorry. Deal with it. This is for everyone wary of the dreaded ‘S’ word. That’s right…Shitzus. None of those yapping little fuckers will appear in this review. There will, however, be spoilers. I have demarcated them clearly. You’ve been warned.

It has arrived…through the ceiling apparently.

Here is a dramatization of me seeing this movie. Last time on ‘Andrew Meets Girls That are Actually Movies: Prometheus’

“Oh hey, I’m Andrew.” “Oh hey, I’m Prometheus. I’m pretty but I actually suck. Wanna make out?” “Any human contact is welcome. Even if you are simply a heavy-handed metaphor. Thank you!”

I’m back at another party, weeks after having surreptitiously exchanged mental saliva, if only briefly, with Prometheus in a closet. It turned out the movie/girl of my dreams was just that. An illusion. Well, the party is thumping but I’m standing in the corner gently swirling my beer in a shitty cup that is always red for some reason. Or blue. Any primary color other than yellow. I’m bored, checking my watch, ready to head home.

“Hey.” She’s right behind me, looking, for some deliriously (and wonderful) reason, like Anne Hathaway in a skin-tight cat suit. I am about to comment on how inappropriate it is based on our recent weather…and then I realize I need to shut the fuck up before I do something stupid, you know, like scare away a hot lady in a cat suit. “How’s it going?”

“Oh. Good. Thinking of heading out…”

“I just got here though.” She smiles at me. I’m interested (read: extreme understatement).

“What’s your name?”

The Dark Knight Rises.”

I finish my drink. “I’ve heard about you. You’re supposed to be pretty amazing. But I’ve already been burned once this summer… Not sure if you know Prometheus…

“That’s a shame. It’s also a shame that, not only am I hot, but I’m also surprisingly emotionally poignant, politically relevant and filled with Oscar-winning actors.” I take pause for a moment and consider the last item on the list. I’ve heard weirder things. I’ve done weirder things.

“That’s awesome and everything. But the last girl who said that wasn’t, well, all there…”

“Really? Not smart? Or deep? How about me? I’m a sprawling epic about class warfare, reminiscent of the French Revolution, all the while threading together a narrative of intense emotional destruction and, at the same time, extensively exploring these themes in relation to the concept of parental abandonment and societal isolation”

“Oh.” I grab someone else’s drink and down it. “Well…in that case…”

And then we make out. Everywhere.

“Who the fuck is Rick Ross and why the fuck is he in my police report?” ~ Batman, a Rick-Roll virgin.

We have finally reached it. After Nolan’s years of puttering with forms and structures, he has at last reached his eventual goal of inserting true thoughtfulness and literary considerations into a product so commercial it practically has a McDonalds ad taped to its nut sack. This is probably the closest we will ever get to a legitimate movie masquerading as a blockbuster film. Now, I know to some of you lugheads, that might not sound so appetizing and so, in response, I offer you this: Anne Hathaway in a fucking cat suit (#drool) and, for the ladies, Tom Hardy is only mostly disfigured (meaning he could still take on Matthew ‘Duller Than Matlock and Impossible to Spell’ McConaughey in a prettyboy-off with one check bone tied behind his back). There are action scenes! Joseph Gordon-Levitt is likable! Michael Caine cries! Twice! (It’s like watching an angel weep, if that angel has a grizzled British accent, has killed multiple people with a sawn-off shotgun and once stole a bunch of Italian gold). Apparently, Mr. Nolan decided to put in a little bit of everything for everyone which might explain why this movie is almost THREE FUCKING HOURS LONG. But I forgive him. I also forgive him for the fact that I only slept like three hours last night because I was so fucking excited about the end of the movie I couldn’t pass out, like a child terrified of closing his eyes in fear of wetting the bed once more (Editor’s Note: totally never happened to me. Totally never.)

That day, rock/paper/scissors ended terribly.

What’s it about? I refuse to give away much (like some other phallus-gobbling reviewers out there. I’m looking at you ‘The Guardian’ and David ‘How Have You Been Doing This For So Long?’ Letterman). So. Batman. He’s sad. Bane. He’s evil. Bane wants to fuck Gotham up. Batman doesn’t. Gotham gets fucked up. Batman gets fucked up. Aaaaaaand Anne Hathaway helps a generation of boys become men. That’s all I’ll give you. It’s as complex as a Dickens’ novel, if Nicholas Nickleby used his armory of ultra-tech to do battle with a severely steroid-jacked Oliver Twist (Note to Self: TV series idea. I’m thinking…Lifetime Channel?) It also, structurally, has about five fucking acts packed to the gils with twists, turns, ups, downs, side-to-sides and Anne Hathaway in a cat suit, as well as a half-way point that basically screams INTERMISSION. I expected a Pythonesque curtain to descend and John Cleese to try to sell me an albatross. Alas, that dream shall continue to go unfulfilled. This thing is so long and all-encomapassing that you eventually leave the theater a crushed shell of your former self, as though Bane has pummeled your innards into a veritable pea-soup of fanboy glee. Sense, patience and the ability to stand long monotonous barrages of tribal drums will be melting out of your fucking ears as you stumble from the multiplex. If that doesn’t entice you, stay the fuck away. This shit ain’t The Avengers. Yes, there are some witticisms (this should be fucking shocking coming from Christopher “Humorous as a Holocaust Vigil” Nolan) but this is an EPIC. Not in the sense of assholes with backwards caps and popped collars going for the record number of jaeger shots to be ingested by way of their rectums, but in the Homerian sense of omnipotent narrative brutality. It’s a marathon. If you don’t train and prepare, bringing with you acceptable sustenance (a jumbo popcorn, a hotdog, three packs of snow caps and a roast turkey should do it) you might die. No joke. It’s that draining.

In the apocalyptic dance-off, Batman realized that he had no way of competing with a perfect landing of a triple sow-cow.

As the years have passed, Nolan has been secretly weaving together a tapestry of immutable acting talent and, like that fungus at the bottom of my pantry, is growing with each delicious morsel that he consumes. I’m not sure if he signs a contract for these actors’ souls or if he’s just pleasant to work for, but Nolan’s Harem of Beautiful Men is on full display here. We have Tom “Watch Bronson Right Now, You Little Whores” Hardy acting the fuck out of this thing, even with Darth Vader’s fist lodged in his mouth. Also, there’s Morgan “God – I will keep making that joke because it is still funny to me” Freeman given more to do than simply point and spout at fancy gadgets. Marion Cotillard is back as Nolan’s shadow, steadily murdering all of his dreams and driving him mad with boner-popping desire (she is a very attractive woman, even if she a frenchie). Also, finally, Mr. Oldman is allowed to come into his own, truly stretching out those Oscar-pants he so graciously tried on earlier last year in Tinker Tailor This Sounds Like A British Porno Spy, and offering up a performance packed with so much heartbreak you’d think it was a bad day in the trauma ward (my thoughts and prayers go out to all of the families affected by Grey’s Anatomy day at Northwestern Memorial Hospital). I would also like to say, for all of the attractiveness of Ms. Hathaway and her figure that simply will not quit, even if you take it’s stapler, stop paying it and move it down to the boiler room, she delivers one hell of a performance. While most of the film is a mirthless cortege of unending barbarity, Ms. Hathaway is positively delectable as Selina Kyle, expertly adapted to stick just close enough to the comic’s conception without ever dipping into the realm of painful punnery or Pfeiffer whippery. She seems to be the only person here enjoying herself, constantly gobbling each scene with cat-like don’t-give-a-fuckery and impenetrable confidence. Both she and Cotillard aid in a pleasant departure from Nolan’s usual sausage-fest offering, providing at least two women in Gotham who can be classed at a level above ‘District Attorney/Wet-Blanket Barbie’ (Side Note: there was a limited edition of Wet-Blanket Barbie’s released in the mid-90s to help with menstrual education. It was a limited edition for a reason. Side Side Note: There will never be a ‘District Attorney Barbie’ for the obvious reason that legitimate employment hurts chances of marriage). We must also offer her the age old honor of ‘props’ for making herself both likable and engaging enough to survive some of the more ridiculous shoe-horning of her character into the latter half of the film. Honestly, she has no place being there…but no one is going to argue. Trust me.

There are two standouts, however. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is as shiny as a new nickel playing the ingeniously conceived John Blake. From a structural point of view, the wide-eyed and almost impossibly intuitive cop provides an emotional spine for a good deal of the movie while our heroes, Oldman and Bale, are otherwise indisposed (which really sounds like they’re on a sex holiday. That would have been incredible.) In the hands of another actor, Blake would have been limper than a penis in a Phyllis Diller convention. But this boy is erect as hell (That metaphor went to the wrong place). Joe Levitt is that wonderful intersection of young talent, endless charisma and 3rd Rock From the Sunness that we need in our new acting generation. Never once does he lose believability and literally every time his character is threatened onscreen, the audience gasped. They didn’t even do that for fucking Batman and the movie is named after him. On that note, let’s talk about Bale. Yes, the bat-voice is still here, intermittently. Finally, though, he has crafted a human being on screen that we actually are interested in. No longer is the hot-headed billionaire-jackass but a reclusive drinking-his-own-urine type of shut-in (you know, like that famous one…Hugh Hefner.) He’s hurt, physically, emotionally and metaphysically; and he’s looking for a way out. Instead of seeing the Bat as this infallible machine of pure ass-kickery, we get a glimpse of the human underneath and the fact that nobody’s physical form can take that kind of depreciation and still face off against Tom Hardy. His performance truly forms the missing piece of the emotional puzzle, bringing his arc into full-body over the three films. Though we barely even see the Bat throughout the nine hours of this film’s length, we see a shit load of Wayne. And it couldn’t be more necessary.

Bruce just made a really off-color joke. He hasn’t realized that ‘negro’ is no longer acceptable nomenclature.

Of course, since this is Batman, we must discuss the villains. While the last we saw of Bane was the Hulk as though he’d been roped into an impromptu S&M convention, this one is simply a bastard of such dickish proportions he’d give Stalin a run for his proletariat, with arms the size of my head and a mouth with more metal than a Slayer tour. It’s an interesting, though not wholly sense-worthy, departure from the manic insanity of Heath Ledger’s divinely-inspired Joker. This antagonist is deliberately sadistic, fully in control of his hatred and completely lacking in anything resembling empathy. While there was an irrational sense of safety in the fact that there was no rhyme or reason to the targets of the Joker’s malice, Bane is coolly calculating and evisceratingly vengeful. When he has your number, he will pound your ass harder than a fist-ended jackhammer. Granted, his plan to turn Gotham into a sinewy fiefdom is so far-fetched it makes the horizon look close but it certainly makes for some exciting cinema. Especially the hilariously out-of-tone court hearings overseen by a gleefully disheveled Cillian Murphy. In the end, however, this villain is far closer to the heart for Bats than the mad-dog off the leash, even if the titanium crab attempting to emerge from his esophagus does reduce his facial emotive capacity to zilch. There is nothing comparable to the Joker, but the rest of this film beats the hell out of Harvey “Your Yelling Voice is Kinda Whimpy” Dent and Eric “Smarmy Ass #4” Roberts. Advantage: Rises.

*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*

Alrighty, boys and toys, ladies and babies (Editor’s Note: no baby should see this movie on account of having to explain the fact that Selina is in a momentary lesbian relationship that never really comes up again. Though babies have a keen sense of lesbianism and alternative sexuality, their capacity for disjointed character traits is nil) have you all seen the movie? If so, continue. If not, STOP READING AND WATCH IT. IT’S AMAZING. If you don’t plan on watching it, well, then, I guess…to each their own. Batman ain’t for everyone. Well, intrepid readers, ahead thar be plot-points! Tid-bits! In-depth discussions of thematic arcs! Jokes about Inception! You have been warned.

Now, the big thing that people are doing is directly comparing this movie to The Dark Knight. This isn’t fair for a multitude of reasons. Dark Knight existed in a vacuum, providing something rarely seen in the span of human existence: intelligence in blockbusters. It discussed some stuff in an adultish manner, had thru-lines, characters attempted to exist and the Joker was in-fucking-credible. What The Dark Knight Rises does is tie together the disparate elements from both the first and second movies which, to be honest, seemed so fucking divergent they could be a Chicago-based young adult novel. This is the keystone, holding together this at-once muddled mass and at-twice a sprawling examination of chaos/order/fear/parental loss. We all watched Nolan wrap his lips around the massive sausage that is this franchise, expecting him to gag on it, predicating a vomitous explosion of akin to the Schumacherian efforts of the earlier series. However, unlike any other Brit in existence, this gentlemen seems to know how to chew after biting off too much. He artistically deep throated this comic book, bringing it to a climax so titillating you can…well, we’ll leave that metaphor to finish itself (INNUENDO). Not only that, but like the master of the shadows it portrays, this movie stands alone, without any aid from its predecessors.

At the curtain’s close, after the sneakily named-Robin wanders into the Bat-cave and we get a glimpse into Wayne’s new freaky-deaky life as Bonersaurus Rex alongside Sexelina Kyle, just pounding it out Florentine style (with some added Alfred action) we have been treated to a comprehensive view of this hero, a fully-developed arc stretching all the way from the homicidal little ass who gets the shit slapped out of him by Katie Holmes to the infringer of basic civil liberties while fighting the Joker to the broken shell of a man who almost loses all principles in search of final vengeance. Going into this film, they clearly hint at Wayne’s demise, offering a thematic thread of a man who is seeking his own destruction before realizing that death is by far the simplest option. That, coupled with his unhealthy obsession with a woman my friends described as ‘Sarah Jessica Parker on a good day’, is beautifully juxtaposed with the twisty tale of a forbidden love affair between Talia and Bane. It’s the only moment of humanization Hardy is afforded in the entire film, just a ephemeral glimpse of that angelic face before being maimed in the name of love (not the Bono name of love, the name of love where you are vigilantly stopping an entire prison from raping a small girl. You know, Twilight love). In that second, this codification of the purest of evils transforms into nothing more than a star-struck lover, a guardian of the only thing in life that he cares about. A love that would blow up a fucking city. Yo, Bella, would Edward take an entire metropolis hostage with a weaponized nuclear core and systematically murder dissenters just out of pure affection? No? Bane’s a real man. Also, he’s a psychopath. So…he’s like pretty much every dude after their balls drop.

Batman…I’m your father. Well…in a metaphorical sense. I didn’t mean to get your hopes up. Please stop crying.

I will say that I had some issues with plotting etc. Batman’s ‘death’ was a little too reminiscent of both The Avengers (without the wit) and Heroes season one (without the terribleness). Also…if he was vaporized by a neutron bomb…what the fuck did they bury at the end? There was a patch of disturbed ground under his tombstone… Did Alfred bury his Wayne sex-doll as some sort of perverted effigy? We all know he has one. Also, we harp so hard on him getting his shit wrecked, when he easily just appears at the end with Selina, I expected the camera to pan down and see a spinning top spinning away. It just seemed so easy in comparison to the rest of the film. No doubt, my inner fanboy was pissing himself with relief, as this continued to confirm the fact that Batman is, in fact, immortal. Seriously, though, if I were Alfred, after the emotional fecal maelstrom Wayne had put him through over the course of this 20-hour ordeal, I would have walked right the fuck over to that table and punched Bruce in the nut sack. Then hugged him. And then the nut sack again. What a cock.

Finally, here is a list of absurd plot devices throughout the film that didn’t fit too well into reality: the fact that the core decays in EXACTLY the amount of time Batman needs to heal his spine; the fact that Batman is suffering from a decay of cartilage (a chronic disorder) which is then completely ignored after his back is miraculously healed…who are these guys, the dudes from The English Patient? Geographically, it makes sense, temporally…not as much. Also: why does no one ever shoot Bane? Or Batman? There must have been stray bullets going everywhere in that final fight. None made contact? None? Also, I know Robin is meant to be the ‘Boy Wonder’, but that doesn’t make him fucking Miss Cleo. How the hell was he predicting all the bullshit he goes through?

But I can forgive all that. Why? Because Batman, that’s why. Because this is thoughtful, delicious entertainment of the highest order. Because watching this movie is like a 2 hour 45 minute Swedish Massage, it’s gonna get that deep tissue and it’s going to fucking hurt…but a pretty lady is touching your naked back and the next day you feel like a million bucks.

*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*SPOILERS*

The only time since Transformers 2 that I’ve ever wished I were a motorcycle.

Nolan’s come a long, long way. So often his films are pretty and heady as hell, but lacking the emotional core required to draw in someone of my particular tastes. I, shock and horror, didn’t care all that much about Inception. It had a shit load of style, it was kind of smart in places, but it’s a soulless demon of a film experience. Even The Dark Knight felt unfairly manipulative in its designs. You felt as though Nolan was more on the Joker’s side than the Bat’s, gleefully obliterating hope and life in the goal for more excitement. Here, however, you never once doubt that Nolan is with the Bat, pushing him along, praying that he’ll win out against this foe so evil, even Aleister Crowley would be reticent to invite him to a goats-blood and virgin-rape party. This movie, unlike anything Nolan has really produced in the past, is about people. Hurt people. People searching for redemption. And we want them to get it.

Hopefully, this movie changes things. Hopefully, we’ll finally get the better class of blockbuster we, as a people, so deserve. Perhaps audiences will reconsider seeing Transformers 4 in favor of something a little less intellectually necrotic. This is the new wave and Batman is the banner man, charging into the darkness of popular taste, waging war against mental sloth and lackadaisical pop-shit gluttony. We need more Nolans. We need more Whedons. We need the good shit to be the norm. And we need to celebrate it, unfettered, unadulterated and unashamed. Go see The Dark Knight Rises. Let movie companies know that this is what we want. Tell them to shove their What to Expect While You’re Expecting and their Expendables 2 up their rectal channels, along with the rest of the shit they plan on laying out over the next few years. This is a revolution. A revolution of the smart blockbuster.

Also, I hear the IMAX is awesome. That’s not part of the revolution. That’s just pretty.

The Dark Knight (2008) – Christopher Nolan (Dir.), Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Heath Ledger, Gary Oldman, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Aaron Eckhart, Morgan Freeman, Eric Roberts…basically everyone again

Dude, it’s behind you…

As we have witnessed this franchises lowest lows, so must we visit its soaring high. As the flashing neon of Schumacher and the pop music of Burton drift off into the distance, Grand Master Nolan reaches down from the grit-covered heavens and offers us entry into the darkest most decrepit vision of the Bat-world. If The Avengers hadn’t soared its glorious way across the silver screen this last summer, The Dark Knight would have to unequivocally be the greatest comic book movie ever made. Other than Ang Lee’s HULK, of course. But I’ll go off about that work of brilliance another day (read: sarcasm). I remember when I was living in England, the trickle of news about Ledger’s joker infecting the news waves, tickling our fanboy titties, just teasing us with the titillating temptation of the Dark Knight’s greatest villain. Honestly, all I was hoping for was a musical interlude in an art museum and purple berets. I was sorely disappointed when that was replaced with ‘good acting’. What pish-posh! Thematic depth? Well constructed character arcs? Get yourselves out of my genre of goofy bullshit and go back to that Ishiguro movie. The one with Keira Knightly where she maybe gets naked. Maybe not. I haven’t seen it. The point remains the same, who let you be so fucking good at this Chris Nolan? Did Zeus descend from Mt. Olympus disguised as a ‘talented director’ and impregnate your mother (thinking it was, after all, Rob Reiner circa 1985…ewww)? How did this happen?

Most violent game of duck, duck, goose ever.

Well, let’s check out what’s going on here. After Ra’s Al Ghul took the phrase ‘getting on like a house on fire’ the wrong way and got off at one El stop too late (i.e. the one where he dies) Batman is cleaning up Gotham like a champ. And he has groupies! One of them being a hilarious dude wearing hockey pads (side note: Andy Luther, the hockey pads dude, is an amazing Chicago actor and stand up guy). Well, mob bosses are all wetting their panties in fear of the Bat, they hire the world’s worst kids’ entertainer to, well, I believe the technical term is: fuck shit right up. And he does. In increasing maniacal and vicious ways. All the while, we have Bruce pining after a woman who looks as though the original version of her was kidnapped and forced into slavery by Scientology (and nobody minds) and Aaron “Chin of the Year” Eckhart is trying to be the best DA in town. Well, shit gets nasty, stand-in-Katie-Holmes gets blowed up, Aaron’s beautiful, beautiful face gets a healthy dosing of the Courtney Love Vagina treatment (don’t ask what that is), a truck flips over on Michigan Ave, Batman gets a new motorcycle-batpod-thing and Heath Ledger dresses in drag. It’s a feast for the eyes! Basically, Nolan has taken the basic premise of the chaos vs. order dichotomy and injected it with a vicious dose of Heat (all the parts without Val Kilmer) as well Goodfellas (without Ray ‘Exasperated all the Time’ Liotta) and The Untouchables (without Kevin ‘American Robin Hood’ Costner. And no, I will never let him live that one down. The bastard). It’s complex. It has something to say. And, like a goth stripper with a PhD, it will let you know in the most boner-inducing, gorgeous way possible.

Okay, so, the movie is good. It’s got a solid script, decent set pieces yada, yada, yada. What elevates it from the mantel of ‘Pretty Good’ to ‘Ball-Blazingly, Seizure-Inducingly, Melt-Your-Face-Off-Good’ is Mr. Heath ‘That One Time in the Mountains With the Cowboys’ Ledger. Holy shit. While we were watching, doing our regular jackassy thing, the room fell silent whenever the Joker entered. He has Scenes, with a capital S. You know, for Actors with capital A’s. Every other mutherfucker unlucky enough to be dumped into a comic book franchise barely even phones it in. I believe Chris Walken mailed it in, that’s how little of a fuck he gave. Ledger, on the other hand, crafts something otherworldly. It’s a performance that reminds you plebs out there that actors don’t simply interpret, they create. Ledger was a fine artist who, of course, will be sorely missed. But day-um. What a way to go.

Harv, the Crypt Keeper called and he wants half his face back. Also, he was wondering if you were around for poker on Tuesday. Are you guys seriously friends?

Unfortunately, by contrast, the rest of this A-list cast looks closer to a matinee performance of the Mikado in Bum-fucktonville Idaho. It’s not that they’re bad…they’re just adorable in comparison with their ’emotions’ and ‘gravitas’. This is probably my favorite role of Eckhart’s other than Thank You For Smoking and yet, whenever he has a scene with Ledger, you almost feel bad for him. You want him to be as good, you pray for him to be as good, but his scary half-face looks as intimidating as a fucking corgi. The man just doesn’t have the ABs (that’s Acting-Bollocks, a technical term for when Marlon Brando would pull down his pants and slap his adoring audiences with his 400lb nut sack. True story.) Oldman is still around kicking tail as Gordon as is Morgan “I had a friend named Andy Dufresne” Freeman. But, Mr. Bale…oh Mr. Bale. Can someone please tell Chris to clear his throat? Or stop eating cigarettes? Or stop using the bladed dildo? Who ever thought that impression of a gravel road was an acceptable form of communication? It’s fine when he’s demanding to know where the drugs are going, but when he’s having a simple conversation with Harvey Dent, he seems more likely to begin coughing up radioactive phlegm rather than plot points. Just take a lozenge, you silly man.

Also, let’s be real. For all it’s titty-twisting beauty, this isn’t without its flaws. First and foremost we have the extended Tom Waits impression that is the Bat-voice. Next we have far too much footage of the Bat-pod. Seriously, I know you spent a really long time building that thing and it looks fun as hell, but Mr. Nolan this isn’t a meditation on how totally sweet Batman’s wheelies are. I think, if you remove half of the batpod footage, you’d get this monster of a film down to an acceptable length. Another bone to pick: we are led to believe that Batman is a stand up guy, making sure to never murder any perps…but he doesn’t seem to give a single, voluntary, airborne fuck when it comes to collateral damage. Every chance he gets, he’s blowing up parked cars or walls or malls or glass or…what is he, a nine year old who found the cheat code to the tank in Grand Theft Auto? Also, if anyone has read my review of Mississippi Burning, you know some of my fury when it comes to the conservative undertones of this movie, specifically in regards to police brutality and the whole cell-phone radar conceit at the climax. I mean, it’s a debatable thesis and I won’t get into it again, but I will say this… The Joker is holed up in a totally abandoned building filled only with hostages, dogs and thugs. How can Batman use cell phone radar in the entirety of the structure? Are the bad guys live-tweeting their murder of civilians? Are the guard dogs instagramming the whole affair: “W/ Joker LOL. Here comes Batman! Charge! Oh he punched me! ROFL!”

Also, a lot of dogs get thrown down elevator shafts. What does Nolan have against dogs? Is he just kind of a dick? Is he simply a cat person?

The Joker: Most Unnerving Blackjack Dealer Ever.

On a serious note, for once, what Nolan did with movie is rarely achieved. He took something in the popular domain that, honestly, has a rather basal approach to thematic exploration and doesn’t really have any huge dwellings on the Human condition, and turned it into something good. I’m talking The King’s There Will Be No Country For Old The Hours in Love with Atonement good. It raised the bar for what we expect in a summer blockbuster. We’re not just here to sink into our jumbo buckets of heart-attack-corn, only to have our brains numbed by an onslaught of visual and cranial anesthesia. His work on this franchise takes all other major titles to task. Forever more, summer movies will be judged against this work of pure panty-wetting bliss. It’s a movie like this that would force a studio like Marvel to do something drastic such as hire a veritable madman to almost single-handedly craft their golden child of a film franchise into whatever he pleased. Now, The Avengers is by no means nearly as deep or thoughtful as The Dark Knight, but it isn’t a piece of shit like everything else that parades across our eye-testicles every summer. It had quality acting, taught directing and fight scenes that made sense. This is becoming the norm. I hope. Give people something juicer to mull over during the waning summer days, not just more sugar-coated schlock to make us ever more artistically bankrupt than we already are.

So, Mr. Nolan, you have raised your bar high. Perhaps too high. Bring it home with what could be one of the best blockbusters of all time. Or else. You bastard.

Well, this is the end of our Bat Saga until the grand opening of the Film Du Jour. As a celebration, my friends, Alex and Kevin, joined me in competing for the ‘Best Bat-Voice Impersonation’. The prizes were of the highest caliber. Here is a little smattering of how fucking ridiculous my friends are:

Alex as Emotionally Supportive Boyfriend Batman:

Kevin as Batman rehearsing with his cat:

And, finally, me as Batman ordering movie tickets:

I believe I ‘won’. My prize, well, let’s just say the emotional roller coaster it put me through upon its reception could be best summed up with this picture:

There are no words.

Well, now for some serious Tweetage.

Kids, this is what happens when a smurf farts. #batathon

I like that all the clowns really want to give exposition. #batathon

Oh Heather Ledger, work the fucking balls. #batathon

Yes, nobody will notice the school bus that came out of the building.#batathon

“I’m not wearing hockey pads!” Batman has been drinking way too much Jack drenched in cigars drenched in Phyllis Diller. #batathon

“Sir, Batman just left. He left when you were talking to him. How rude.” #batathon

“Oh Maggie Gyllenhaal. She looks like Sarah Jessica Parker on a good day.” ~ Kevin. Wrong. #batathon

“I want your trust. And a mustache ride. Not in that order.” ~ Dent to Gordon, still a better love story than Twilight. #batathon

“Look at my whore, Rachel. This is how I impress women.” ~ Wayne. #batathon

“No ballerina would have tits that big!” “Have you seen Barishnakov’s bosom? He is a well endowed mutherfucker.”#batathon

Wait, everyone shut the fuck up. The Ledger is approaching.#batathon

“You’re a hard man to reach.” “You’re a hard man to reach around.” “What?” “Don’t worry about it.” #batathon

Did Morgan Freeman start a Meth Lab in Wayne Industries? Hey…Walt? Jesse? #batathon

And starring Maggie Gyllenhaal in the new sitcom from Fox: “Oh that bat!” It consists of her shaking her head with a smile in every scene.

And then Alfred had sex with everyone on that boat. Man, woman, child, mineral, vegetable…it was a veritable sex-topia. #batathon

“Why So Serious?” “Um…you have a blade in my mouth. Do you really want me to answer?” ~ Ended terribly. #batathon

“Leave your cell phone.” “I use that one solely for bitches.” ~ The Freeman. #batathon

“John Woo should have directed this scene. You don’t understand, there are doves and people jumping with two guns EVERYWHERE in China”

“That card completes my Pokedeck!” ~ The judge, about to be mercilessly murdered. #batathon

“That bitch behind him has some awkward tan lines happening.” ~ Meg. Vigilant. #batathon

“Let’s get drunk and sexually experiment. I mean…let’s just get drunk.” the commissioner, lonely #batathon

“Hey, Maggie, remember that movie where I made love to your brother? This is like that, but with less cowboys.” #batathon

“You remind me of my father. I HATE my father.” ~ With a knife. How Harry Reid gets the Senate to vote in his favor. #batathon

How did Batman not die from that height? Also, they forget they left the Joker with a room full of innocent rich people. #batathon

Batman…were you just standing there for like 20 mins until we got here?…that’s kinda creepy. #batathon

“A riddle…Riddle-er” “Shut the fuck up.” #batathon

“I don’t think we need a minigun to do that.” “But it’s sooo cool.”#batathon

And Joel Schumacher was allowed to direct a single scene. You know, the one in the gay night club. #batathon

“Anyone in this town you can trust?” “Bruce.” “Okay, anyone you can trust who won’t put his penis inside you?” Silence. #batathon

“I was literally a block away from you. We should torture suspects together.” “Sounds hot.” “Sounds like a sitcom.” Batman/Dent high five

“What will you have me do, Alfred?” “Endure.” In fairness, they had the same conversation when he wet the bed as a youngster,#batathon

I wish Aaron Eckhart’s chin had more press conferences. #batathon

“Ok, that’s NOT good.” ~ Thank you Greek Chorus of idiocy.#batathon

You know…that’s not how physics work…but it’s okay. Because it’s amazing. #batathon

Batman, you suck at braking. #batathon

Gordon is wearing a turtleneck! You know, I shall let that one pass.#batathon

“Glad we have mood lighting so that Batman totally can’t hide behind you.” Seriously, there is one door. How didn’t he notice him come in?

“Like a leper!” “I’m not a leopard. I’m a bat.” “I said leper.” “I’m NOT a LEOPARD.” “Um…let’s move on…” ~ Batman, mishearing

“This is the WORST SURPRISE BIRTHDAY EVER!” ~ Dent before a severe facial. #batathon

Wait…wouldn’t the GCPD have a unit in the areas next to both Dent and Dawes? Isn’t that how Police works? #batathon

“Let’s play a game. I spy something beginning with B. That’s right! Barrel of gasoline! Harvey…Harvey?” #batathon

Chris Nolan: “We’re playing for keeps. The only female character gets mercilessly murdered.” #batathon

“The guys at the station bought you this dildo. It was a joke and I didn’t have money for another present. So…I guess, here’s a dildo.”

On the upside, Harvey, your teeth look REALLY good. #batathon

“Fuck plans! Plans are pathetic!” ~ Joker, the man who plans the entire elaborate climax to this film. #batathon

GTA. Either Gotham Transit Authority, or the City of Gatham encourages violent rampages and sex with hookers in a hilarious manner #batathon

And then Mr. Freeman discovers the center of the Matrix. He uses to watch all the penguins in the Antarctic for narration purposes.

“Mr. Wayne, you don’t have to use the silly voice with me. I know who you are.” ~ Lucius Fox.

Remember, kids, wear a seatbelt or Two Face might murder you.#batathon

Wait…whose cell phones are they using here? The SWAT teams? “I’m on the roof, LOL” #batathon

And Gordon chooses his favorite thereby making every Thanksgiving far more awkward for years to come. #batathon

Batman falls like three stories and we’re worried he’ll live. He also fell from a penthouse onto a fucking car and was fine. WHAT?#batathon

“Dad, why didn’t Batman sign my tits?” “Because you don’t have tits, son. You don’t have tits.” ~ Gordon and his son, confused#batathon

YAY! The Batathon is over! The Dark Knight Rises, you better not fucking disappoint, or I will murder EVERYBODY. #batathon

And so, I’m seeing The Dark Knight Rises on Friday night. Be on the lookout for the review on Saturday.

Batman Begins (2005) – Christopher Nolan (Dir.), Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Katie Holmes, Tom Wilkinson, Cillian Murphy, Morgan Freeman, Rutger Hauer, Liam Neeson, Ken Watanabe, Gary Oldman…basically everyone ever

And starring Dracula as Batman!

Finally, we have reached it, like Orpheus emerging from Hades, the Eurydician Batman franchise, can see the light of life once more. It’s golden rays trickle across it’s skin, turning it into a sexier, leaner, darker, better, harder, faster, stronger version of its former self. Gone are the cheesy soundtracks by Prince, the insane leaps of comic-book logic (almost), Jim Carrey’s crotch and the abortion of Arnie’s comedic ‘skillz’. What we have here is the closest thing to a ‘film’ this Dark Knight has offered up thus far. Christopher “Look How Smart I Am” Nolan leaps from his backwards-logic, indie, thriller-face into blockbuster-dom, a knight in dark armor, wielding the blade of ‘Good Acting’, the lance of ‘Intelligent Direction’, the bow of ‘Coherent Characters’ and comically oversized battleaxe ‘Sensical Plot Developments’. Yes, he does have to confront the terrors of ‘Cliche One-Liners’ and ‘Complete Logical Fallacies’, and yet, like Mel Gibson emerging from the Thunderdome, he steps out, victorious, and makes out with Tina Turner on her lady lips (Tina Turner being, in this metaphor, ‘General Not-Terribleness’). He injects this tale with, as the Jews would say, hootspa. And, for pretty much the most part, he’s incredibly successful.

So, as the title would correctly suggest, this is the beginning of Batman. We see him as a whiny kid, demanding that he not see opera on the grounds that opera is terrible (bring on your wrath, opera singers, I will take you on, one by one). Well, apparently God loves opera because, in order to teach young Bruce a lesson, he has a crackhead murder his parents. Oops. Boys and girls, take note and listen to your Benjamin Fucking Britten, otherwise your parents will be mercilessly gunned down. Well, Brucy-wucy gets all angsty, and decides, like every college graduate, to go to Asian and find himself. And by ‘find himself’ I mean pick fights with random Chinapenese people in prison. While there, Liam “Very Special Set of Skills” Neeson discovers him and tells him to climb a mountain. Which one? Who the fuck cares? At the top of said mountain is an oddly-hairless-upper-lip Ken Watanabe doing the most racist impression of a Japanese person I’ve seen since, well, Inception. Well, Bruce, a man who is determined to never murder people, ends up blowing up the League of Shadows, thereby indirectly causing the deaths of dozens of men, either from random wood falling or just simple exposure. From there, he returns to his house, where Michael Caine is planning an elaborate heist of everything the Waynes own by hiding Minis surreptitiously throughout the mansion and playing ‘The Self-Presevation Society” on a loop. From there, the infinitely wealthy and kind of intellectually dull Bruce Wayne turns from a whiny little bitch trying to do an impression of Jack Ruby into a deadly spelunker and then into the Batman we all know and love. And it is fucking awesome.

Trust me, honey, keep the bag on. I know it’s terrifying, but it’s better than what’s underneath.

Also, the terrifyingly and unnervingly beautiful Cillian Murphy has returned from murdering British Nationals and slipped into a mask closely resembling a Stephen King wet dream to drive everyone in Gotham mad. Will Batman be able to stop him before he evaporates all the water and drives the city insane? Yes. Duh. (Spoilers) Will it be awesome? Yes. It fucking will be. Seriously, finally we have some badass bat-action. There isn’t a SINGLE turtleneck in the ENTIRE film. Do you know how happy that makes me? There was a scene where Katie “Fills Out A Sweater Surprisingly Well Too Bad About Her Inability to Be Interesting” Holmes is wearing one and you can see Christian “YELLING” Bale ready to rip it off and assimilate its fashion-blandness in order to join his misguided predecessors. But he doesn’t. In all the previous incarnations, Batman has some fucking random-ass gadget to help him out of exceedingly specific situations (Shark repellant aside, people) and occasionally he punches someone in the face. In this, he’s a fucking ninja. Do you know how cool ninjas are? Let’s put it this way: take pirates, remove the gay with the patented Rick Santorum “Pray Away the Gay Rape Spray” (TM), add a dash of cowboys, a hint of samurai and a double dose of ‘Don’t-Give-a-Fuckery’; distill it down to its base essence, cook it in Chuck Norris’s prostate (made of stainless steel, like all good Cuisinart tools) add a sprinkling of offensive asiaphilia and you have just one tenth of the awesomeness of ninjas. Now, take someone as infallibly panty-wetting as Batman and mix him with this ungodly potion for titillation and what do we have? We have theater owners mopping up rainbow vomit across the nation. Because people vomit rainbows when they are excited. Look it up.

So, yes, Liam “I Make Even Clint Eastwood Nervous” Neeson is the bad guy. I suppose he took time off from yelling at people down cell phones about his daughter and punching wolves in the snout to try to drive Gotham insane with his magical ‘Macguffin’ Device. I mean, I know this is Liam Neeson, a man known to skin major action stars and wear their anuses like decorative hats (because the Irish must have decorative hats), but his intimidation factor is severely decreased when his facial hair looks like he just ate a fucking poodle and forgot to wipe his lips. Seriously, it’s like an awkward teenager who insists on growing facial hair even though it’s patchier than my memory of New Years Eve 2010. And then we have Master Bruce, who for the most part is just kind of a rich prick. That’s fine, it just makes you care more about the indefatigable Alfred and his army of hidden Minis. Seriously, Nolan took the downtrodden butler that we saw in the previous films, shoved a healthy does of Bull-Adrenaline up his urethra and let him go. That smarmy asshole is one of the most well-rounded characters in the entire movie. Oh, and of course, we discover why Wayne is able to create such impossible pieces of technology because he has Morgan “God” Freeman making them for him. Mr. Freeman waltzes through this movie like a fucking pimp, tossing off lines as though the subtext is always: “I drove Miss Daisy, bitch.” I half expected an army of penguins to march through and begin mating at the sound of his sonorous tones.

This is your brain on meth ~ Michael Caine, teaching bat-related lessons

But, to top it all off, we have Mr. Gary Don’t Fuck With Me Oldman as the man everyone wants to be their father. I’m not sure if you know this, but Gary Oldman must be a fucking Highlander, decapitating every imposing figure in the English pool of late-age acting talent, whittling the competition down to nil because, after all, there can be only one. He, as Jim Gordon, is ball-blazingly amazing in both this movie and the next. With that porn star mustache you almost forget that he was the speed-freak bat-shit Tazmanian Devil-impersonator gunning down entire families in The Professional and accept that he’s just a big ole teddy bear made of candy and dreams. Also, hilarious side note, previous to becoming the nastiest little smegma-receptacle to ever take the throne, Joffrey “Someone Slap the Shit out of Him” Baratheon is in this movie as a wide-eyed little child having a bad LSD trip. I know we were supposed to care for him or whatever, but I really wanted one of the bad guys to take a hard back hand to his cheek. That’s for Ned Stark, you little twat-wazzle.

So, yes, I could come all over this wonderful redemption from the darkest of sides (“It’s ‘ice’ to meet you” – I will never erase it from my brain, Arnie. You bastard.) I could recollect the constant wet dreams that occurred in the months proceeding the life event that was this movie’s summer release. But I shan’t. Why? Well, with the handy tool of historical perspective, this movie has lost a little luster. At the time, the world was still caught in the almost decade-long flamboyant tailspin brought on by Clooney’s tepid Bat-thing, and Begins was the bat-equivalent of the Second Coming of Christ. There was no fur! No neon! No puns! This was something close to a real movie. I say ‘close’ because, as it’s sequel demonstrates, it could have been so much more. It’s not nearly as fun as, say, Batman Returns and doesn’t have anywhere close to the depth of The Dark Knight. It was a marker of the delicious wonders to come, like the menu for a box of chocolates, just teasing the taste-buds with the concepts of deliriously succulent treats hanging just beyond the horizon. This script was written by David “Blade Trinity” Goyer and, for the most part is pretty solid. But, like Madonna’s wrinkles, the ugly truth seeps through the Botox. We have sprinklings of cliched terribleness here, there and everywhere, from Gary Oldman declaring “I gotta get me one of those” to a random homeless dude announcing “nice ride.” They’re out of place, out of theme, out of character and came out of Goyer’s ass. If Batman is gonna be serious, then make him super-serial. Make him a thematic meditation on the concept of chaos versus order and the interaction of classes having violent climaxes. Oh wait. That’s the next movies. Also, the ending of the movie is fucking ridiculous. They have a machine that ‘vaporizes water’ with such violence that the entire plumbing system erupts throughout the city. You know what’s made of 80% water? Human beings. If that microwave emitter actually existed, Batman and Ra’s Al Ghul wouldn’t have been able to fist fight because they’d be too busy impersonating Veruca fucking Salt. Oh well.

Also, Katie, I know you did the strong thing and divorced Tom “Don’t Get Too Close He Might Have Sex With Your Earholes” Cruise. I respect you for that. Unfortunately, you are about as engaging as a soggy cinder block. You see it, lying there, and you wonder how it got there and why someone would take the time to get it all wet. And then you remember, it’s a fucking cinder block. It’s not going to make you laugh or cry. It’s just going to be a cinder block. You can’t expect it to be anything else. That wouldn’t be fair to the cinder block. Let it return to its friends in the massive wall of cinder blocks, all of them similarly dull. Let Ms. Holmes return to her ocean of general attractiveness, let her disappear into the waves and never been seen again. Honestly, she’s that forgettable. Luckily, Nolan was counting on that for the second movie. He recast the role with the significantly more talented Maggie Gyllenhaal, to which the world went, “Wait…well, we don’t really give a shit.” A victory for all, I feel.

“We’re here about Pod-Racing.” ~ Liam Neeson before a random fanboy tried shanking him in the gut. That fanboy is now a decorative rug.

And, of course, Tweets!

And we’re off! Please, Mr. Nolan, pull down your pants and let me see your delicious manhood. #batathon

He fell and died! Batman Begins: Kid Ends. Movie is over. Go home.#batathon

“This is what happens when you pirate movies in China!” “You grow a beard?” #batathon

Oh no! White man is oppressing us! Where is Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker? #batathon

“What country is this?” “Chinapan.” #batathon

“Your midiclorien count is very impressive Batman.” #batathon

“You can become something else entirely.” “Wait, I can be Michael Jackson?” “No…I…” “I want to be MJ!” Bruce didn’t get it #batathon

Neeson stared at him so hard that he fell off the back of a truck. Such is the power of Neeson. #batathon

“Which mountain is he supposed to climb?” “There is ONE mountain in Asia. It’s Mount Jackie Chan!” #batathon

And the asians run in fear of walking in front of Christian Bale’s shots. #batathon

“Colonel Sanders, do you have the chicken I ask for?” ~ Bruce Wayne very confused as to his purpose in Asia. #batathon

Why didn’t Neeson just kick the Nazi’s in the nuts? That would have been way more efficient than that fucking list. #batathon

Opera. Rich kid form of time-out. #batathon

Yep, Waynes, go out the back door. Like a piece of shit (see what I did there?) #batathon

Thus began Bruce Wayne’s life-long crusade against opera.#batathon

They should remake this with Gary Oldman playing EVERY role.#siriusbat #batathon

Oh shit! It’s the guy from Blade Runner! Disguised as Jerry Springer!#batathon

They died because of your white privilege. You little fuck. #batathon

“They come for you. And you make lists. List after list. Of jews. Jew after jew.” ~ Neeson, hero. #batathon

Katie Holmes, just where you belong. In the kitchen.#whydidyouleavetomcruise #batathon

“Wayne’s still in sweaters. I don’t care yet.” ~ Meg. Not giving a fuck like a champ. #batathon

Hey Joe Chill, wanna see my Jack Ruby impression? #batathon

Oh no! Hers was better! #batathon

IRONY! It’s a criminal offense in Chinapan. #batathon

But this batman has a NINJA turtleneck. How about dem apples?#batathon

“Can you believe Tom Cruise was the last samurai? IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN ME!” ~ Ken, bitter. #batathon

And then the movie turned into the Descent. And Bruce Wayne was eaten by albino Billy Corgan. #batathon

And Helena Bonham Carter as all the Bats. #batathon

“No, Cillian Murphy looks like he’s had plastic surgery and a creature from the deep.” ~ Rebecca, not getting it. #batathon

“This is the worst business tragedy since Harrison Ford chased me naked through the rain.” ~ Rutger Hauer #flashbacks #batathon

I also made a documentary about penguins, would you like to see it? ~ Morgan Freeman. #batathon

I also have Gwyneth Paltrow’s head in a box, would you like to see that? No? ~ Morgan Freeman. #batathon

“It’s called memory cloth. It remembers every time you jizz in it. BE CAREFUL.” ~ The Freeman. #batathon

“Wait…if I’m afraid of lawnmowers? Would I become lawnmower man? I should make that movie!” And it ended terribly… #batathon

“I’m Batman.” And fanboy panties were wet everywhere. #batathon

“Would you like some tape, Master Wayne, because you’re ripped.”#batathon

“I’m more than just a man drenched in cunnilingus juice.” ~ Wayne#batathon

“I own the Muscle in this Town” ~ Falcone, gay club owner.#batathon

Purple lightning brings purple rain. Prince returns… #batathon

“Oh, we don’t care what’s in that crate. It’s probably dead hookers. It usually is.” #batathon

The Narrows, brought to you by Final Fantasy VII. #batathon

“My boss is missing. We’re going to have a party! A search party. It’s very serious.” #batathon

That’s Katie’s mean face. Watch out, she might divorce you!#batathon

That’s the Scarecrow’s sex face. In that it is his only face. #batathon

“Stop spraying yourself, Scarecrow.” #batathon

Apparently, Scarecrow is scared of black men. Like all 1 percenters.#batathon

Bitch, you are no longer hallucinating. I’m dressed as a bat. Go back to sleep. #batathon

Don’t move! Neeson can’t see you if you don’t move! #batathon

“How many dementers are on the loose?” “Dem-what?” “I mean…forget everything I said.” Sirius Black, revealing himself#batathon

Batman…do you need a lozenge? #batathon

Who the fuck wears silk to fix a burned-down home? Katie Mutherfucking Holmes. #batathon

Wow, this one is harder than the others. That’s what Goldilocks said. :O #batathon

The cop version of “Anything you can do, I can do better” but with more grievous bodily harm. #batathon

And Batman spends the entire movie not turning his neck. #batathon

Thanks again, folks. Now, for the creme-de-la-fanboy-creme, we move onto The Dark Knight today at around 4ish CST today. There will also be a Batman impersonation contest. It will be glorious.

Batman and Robin (1997) – Joel Schumacher (Dir.), George Clooney, Chris O’Donnell, Alicia Silverstone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Uma Thurman

Spin the Wheel of Terrible! Everyone’s a loser!

Here it is. Like a virgin trying to hide his boner while waiting for her to ask him up for a cup of coffee at the end of a third date, the big moment has come. We have reached it, the White Whale of movie turdery, the sasquatch of insanity, the Fecal Queen of this cinematic shit-scape: Batman and Robin. Back in 1997, the world waited with abated breath and vomit ready to spew as Joel Schumacher descended further into his Heart of Darkness (where the furry, luminous pink things are kept) and produced this thing, this filmic equivalent of a piss-stained mattress: you wanna see, but then you just feel dirty after. Val Kilmer is out and a barely-known TV doctor is in, bat-nipples and all. We even have Clarissa Explains it All along for the ride. And Chris O’Who-The-Fuck?-Donnell! Well, before I launch into a full on, category five diatribe-icaine, as the US Government said to the Afghani people back in 2001, “I want to lay some truth bombs on you.” Except, they said it without the word ‘truth’.

Batman and Robin is a resounding success.

Now, before you fankids have aneurisms so hard that your brains rupture and blood has nowhere left to go but explode out of your genitalia, let me explain. Calling Batman and Robin a success in no way means that it was ‘good’ or ‘enjoyable’ or ‘not-porcupine-enema- inducing’. It isn’t any of those things. In 1995 the world observed our beloved brooding bat bent over a barrel and brutalized. What had been a decidedly odd, yet macabre, franchise was frilled and killed with colors so eclectic it made Ozzy Osborne believe he was having yet another LSD flashback. However, after allowing the horror to subside and my body to regain many of the fluids it needed after such a long session of dry-heaving, I observed Batman and Robin from a different perspective. What makes this movie so successful is that it is exactly what Joel Schumacher wanted. This is no Heaven’s GateThis is the only logical conclusion put forth by Batman “What the Fuck?” Forever. Thus, if you see this movie with any other expectation, of course you will be disappointed. While Batman “Make it Stop” Forever was a frail sixteen-year-old boy wearing sparkles to prom while clutching the arm of his beard, (poor Shelly, who really did like him. Thus began a slew of closeted boyfriends for the girl and an eventual death by over-catting her studio in Brooklyn), Batman and Robin is that same boy returning from college and introducing the nice lad on his arm as ‘Dick, my boyfriend’. The sequins are the same. He still over-emphasizes the word ‘fabulous’. But now, more than anything, we’re just proud that he can finally be himself.

Batman was discouraged when he discovered that both he and Robin were disqualified from little-league hockey due to pedophilia.

That being said, Joel Schumacher is one of the worst fucking filmmakers of all time. It’s really adorable that he did exactly what he wanted with my favorite childhood superhero. I’m really glad that he got to bury that blade into the Bat’s back over and over again (a multi-colored blade with a matching fur handle). Why couldn’t he have done it to someone else? Someone who sucks? Like Aquaman? They could have made all the semen puns he could have ever wanted (I imagine the dialogue consisting only of ejaculations – see what I did there? Ejaculation is an old word for speaking…nope? Illiterate fools!). But no. We are treated to even more Bat-Crotch and Bat-Butt. Jim Carrey’s sparkly green package has been dutifully replaced with Bane’s impenetrable and terrifyingly over-sized chastity belt. Tommy Lee’s unnerving cackle has be substituted with Arnie’s incompetency with the English language. And Uma Thurman’s breasts have been tossed into the mix (to help people toss off). What we have is a mess of such Chernobolic proportions that even Keith Richards would look at it and say ‘Dude, get your shit together’.

What’s this one about? Who fucking knows? Batman is here, still sporting turtlenecks and looking like he will have sex with anyone anytime. We have Robin again, pearl earring and all. Alfred is sick with ‘Stage One’, a nefarious disease of such Voldemortarian levels that nobody can even say it’s name. The story consists of Mr. Freeze, looking like that time Tobias covers himself in the diamond face mask in Arrested Development, trying to bring his wife back from the dead with the cunning use of diamonds. Why? Because she’s a materialistic whore diamonds are a girl’s best friend? Also, Uma Thurman goes from looking like she just got off the set of Les Miserables to getting dumped in poison and returning as a drag queen even RuPaul would envy. Oh yeah, she also has Lou Ferrigno following her around dressed as the gimp from Pulp Fiction. Maybe he’s Bane. It’s hard to tell behind all the grunts. Poison Ivy and Freeze join up to…I guess destroy the world? So she can breed a super-race of plants and reenact the biggest production of Little Shop of Horrors? I guess? And this is totally disregarding the fact that ice kills all plants, unequivocally. Again, this thing doesn’t make a goddamn lick of sense. Oh yes, and Alicia Silverstone implausibly pouts her way into tight rubber to join them as a woefully employed Batgirl.

Robin was horrified when he later wikipedia-ed the term ‘Cleveland Steamer’.

Firstly: the writing. If we had played a drinking game based on the occurrence of a pun, our livers would currently look like Edward James Olmos’ face. Thank god we refrained. In terms of film time, on average, for every thirty seconds, there are ninety puns. There are that goddamn many. They begin fairly high-brow and witty – “The Iceman Cometh!” Eugene O’Neill reference, well done. And they end…well…about has highly-browed as a meth-whore going into the dumpster for one last look: “Slippery when wet” – it’s so bad, it might not even be a pun. Seriously, the pun-o-meter was flickering in the red for so long, I’m surprised Oscar Wilde didn’t return from the grave and bugger this movie to death. The script was like the literary equivalent of a group of dads sitting around 5 year olds trying to top one another in the ‘Please dad, shut the fuck up’ category.

Who do we have on parade? First, there’s Arnold, spewing phonemes that, when put through a language analysis device, turns out to be a garbled form of English. Mr. Schumacher took one of the more tragic figures in super-villainy and turned him into a Mighty Duck-employing, pun-spouting, Polar Bear-slipper wearing monstrosity. I’ve never regarded Arnie’s chops as being particularly dramatic, but here, it’s just kind of sad. What’s even more discouraging is that he’s trying harder than anyone else in this damn movie. He sells those fucking puns, like that theater kid running through the halls of his high school trying so hard to get people to care about his production of Waiting for Godot: The Musical.There’s a heartbreaking level of commitment, of professional naiveté, as though his agent was playing a joke on the man when he suggested him auditioning for the role and it just got too far down the line for him to yell, “Gotcha, Arnie! Don’t be in that fucking movie!” It’s depressing.

Next, we have Miss Uma “I Will Murder You With Sex” Thurman playing the role for which she was born, Poison Ivy. Honestly, though my favorite incarnation of this character is a murderous queen of freakish plants, Uma’s turn as a villain so campy she could pitch her own tent is incredibly amusing. From the moment she appears like Venus emerging from the clam (though it’s more Puxatawny Phil appearing from his hole in the ground) to her turn as a sexy gorilla creature at the ‘Wayne Ball’, she is just having the time of her fucking life. She employs this homing red mist that makes guys and girls alike take one-way trips to bonerville and, inexplicably, makes highly-choreographed male dancers enact surprisingly impressive routines without direction. Every one of her scenes is a cavalcade of terrible acting, gaudy set design and horribly misplaced wigs. It’s as though she thought she was still in Pulp Fictionafter seeing Bane as her costar and never got the memo that the flaming dude behind the camera was not in fact Tarantino and this was not an ironic send-up of terrible comic book movies. Who cares? She is, hands down, the most enjoyable part of this movie.

He looks like if you dipped the Cavity Creeps in Toxic Waste.

Last, and certainly least, we have the worst possible Batman anyone could have ever suggested to anybody. The only way Batman could be any worse would be if he were played by fucking Urkel. In perfect Clooney-esque fashion, he just sort of wanders from scene to scene, oozing charm, wearing the shit out of a double-breasted blazer, and saying lines like the only thing in life he will never give is a fuck. Because he doesn’t. You can tell. I’m not sure if Schumacher bribed him, or had a miniature explosive device attached to his nut sack, ready to detonate if he left the film set before shooting was wrapped, or what. It is so painfully obvious that Clooney doesn’t want to be there that he seems more like that spoiled kid on the field trip who is constantly pissed off that his mom refused to pack him a Three Musketeers when he specifically asked her like three times and this was the one time because they always made fun of him for not having any candy so can’t he for once just once have a fucking candy bar on the field trip so he doesn’t feel like such a fucking pariah! Whoops, not sure where that came from. Anyway, Chris O’Donnell carries his shit-eating grin from scene to scene, donning his absurd waistcoats mixed with white t-shirts and employing an inexplicable, neon motorbike toaster. He seems to be having a great time! Even Alicia Silverstone doesn’t mind entering the film looking like Britney Spears circa 1999 and almost pouting her baby-face into oblivion.

This is an historic film. It marks the lowest of the low of DC comic book movies. Even the abortion that was The Green Lantern couldn’t hold a candle to this bastard of a b-roll. However, like all horrific historical events, we have to examine what it brought about. Perhaps this gave Clooney the impetus he needed to escape to Italy, cocoon himself in all that is man to return as a golden god of celebrity-hood? We know for sure that if this movie hadn’t gone down like Amelia Earhart, we wouldn’t have had Chris Nolan to reach into the crypt and resurrect this beloved franchise. To get angry at this movie is like getting angry at a puppy shitting on the floor. You can yell and you can shout, but your white carpet is still covered in poop. Just know that puppy has learned and it will grow to be your best friend. This film is terrible. It’s awful. But, it still exists. And it will always exist. That is unless Clooney’s team of assassins finds every single copy and ritualistically burns it in the form of a Schumacher effigy. That would be freaking sweet.

And now…Tweets!

Why are there two bats? Is the bat buttfucking the robin? #batathon

Is he toasting his motorcycle? I see the neon budget has tripled.#batathon

Um…that’s not how ice works… #batathon

“I’m Batman.” ~ Clooney sounds like he’s presenting to his daughter’s second grade class. #batathon

And cameos by the Mighty Ducks. Brought on by Emilio Estevez’s returned drinking problem. #batathon

He would literally have to freeze everywhere for the henchmen to go anywhere. Did they skate there? #batathon

Is that a load-bearing brontosaurus? #batathon

Why didn’t he freeze his head? THAT WOULD BE FAR MORE SENSIBLE!! #batathon

Why does air surfing make you fall faster? #batathon

Apparently, this is the movie where Robin goes through puberty.#batathon

How is he slowing his free fall? “He’s freezing everything below him.” #WHATTHEFUCK#batathon

Robin is dead. Dude. Leave him. Even if he isn’t, it’s okay. We hate him. #batathon

And now: a completely different place with nothing to do with anything. Continuity! #batathon

Uma Thurman in full Les Mis mode. She dreamed a mutherfucking dream. #batathon

Bane: brought to you by Nutty Professor III: Now he’s white. Well, green. #batathon

That chastity belt on Bane must have been made by Lockheed fucking Martin. #batathon

What was that? “That was his death yowel! A murderous yop!”#batathon

Apparently, Mr. Freeze impersonated Benny Hill and died. Learn from this children. #batathon

This is the era of film where Clooney should be fucking up a vampire Quentin Tarantino. #batathon

“Night night. No smooches? Shall we play flowers for Algernon?” ~ Alfred. Melancholy. #batathon

This is Joel Schumacher’s She’s All That. #batathon

“Dudes. This is real botany. Right here. Seriously.” #batathon

Why does Freeze have a concubine? Maybe he likes to BLUE BALL himself. Thanks Meg. #batathon

“It’s not diamonds. It’s what he ejaculates.” #batathon

Helena Bonham Carter as the dead bitch. Maybe she’s not dead. Maybe she’s just Helena Bonham Carter. #batathon

BAT TURTLENECKS AGAIN!!!!! #batathon

“Sorry, I can’t hear you over my sideburns.” ~ Robin. #batathon

Clueless – Alicia Silverstone and everything in this fucking franchise.#batathon

That’s Clooney’s “She’s DTF. Which end do you want?” face.#batathon

“Uncle Alfred?” “What is it? I’m masturbating to memories of the empire.” #batathon

“Alicia. Make dimples. Now talk.” “But…I can’t do both at the same…” “DO IT!” ~ Joel’s directing style. #batathon

“Queen Latifah is in this!” “Ryan, they are not all Queen Latifah.”#batathon

Uma, baby, lose every frill on your outfit. Then we can talk #batathon

The reporter with the eyebrows on her glasses is back. Please punch her. #batathon

I’m glad the pubic hair monsters joined the partay. #batathon

Did Poison Ivy pop in her own CD? And then turn into a sexy gorilla? #batathon

The one pun missing when talking about Ivy’s Vjay jay, “It’s a jungle down there.” #batathon

If you get far enough into Ivy’s vagina, you’ll find Marlon Brando mumbling incoherently. #batathon

Is that a neon bongo? And a batman credit card? Need to hemorrhage…rising… #batathon

Arnie, that was a bad pun. It wasn’t a ‘ice’ pun. #batathon#ihatemyself

“In the circus, the Flying Graysons were a team.” “Yep. And they got fucking murdered. Shut up.” #batathon

“Alfred, I’m bored. Can you sum this up without the dramatic pauses? Oh good, a flashback. Thanks!” ~ Batman, a teenager#batathon

Sound effects brought to you by my 2 year old cousin. #batathon

BANE! FENG SHUI! I LOVE DECORATING! #batathon

“FLIP THIS HOUSE!” Bane, the only person on Flip This House who could, actually, flip this house. #batathon

“Did that flower just orgasm?” #batathon

What instrument is that? A saxo-lin? A trump-iano? A penis in the ear? #batathon

And Coolio reminds us that his head looks like something I picked out of my nose last week. #batathon

“By the way, I just want to point out, this movie is still happening.” ~ Huntsy #batathon

“They’re totally ripping off Grease 3.” ~ Ryan. Optimistic. #batathon

Gary Busey would have been a better Mr. Freeze. You wouldn’t even have to write dialogue, just dress him in neon and hope for the best.

Oh no! Arnie and Uma! PUN…LEVELS…OVERLOADING… #batathon

“Reinforced steel.” THAT IS OBVIOUSLY BRICK. BECAUSE IT IS BRICK. THAT’S WHAT IT FUCKING IS. #batathon

“He’s not Mr. Bane. He’s just Bane. Like Madonna. But with bigger tits.” #batathon

What they leave out of Freeze’s wife’s back story is that she was a horrible Nazi war criminal. Oh well. #batathon

Holy Hardon Batman! “I’m hard too. Well, we might as well just do this.” ~ later described as the “incident that shall never be discussed.”

Why does Ivy need consent? Is she really that sex positive?#batathon

“Oh no! Holy Pea Pudding Batman!” And then Robin died of prostate cancer six months later. #batathon

“Where is Harvey Dent? Oh right, he was black then he was Tommy Lee Jones. Happens.” #batathon

Wait, who will suffer? Hugh Manatee? The British manatee? What did he ever do to you, you poxy bastard? #batathon

“He’s suffering from Stage One.” “Stage One what?” “Shut up. I’m a doctor, you piece of shit.” #batathon

“Didn’t we resolve this issue when I dumped you in pudding?” ~ Batman. #batathon

“Hey Alfred, I know you’re dying, but can you hurry? I’m, like, really bored.” ~ Batgirl #batathon

If Ivy’s pheromones cause a boner that lasts for more than four hours, please consult your local Batman. #batathon

Wait…your first guess for Alfred’s password was “Alfred”. Try 12345, you fucking idiot. #batathon

This movie would have a far more interesting meaning if at the end of every flashback Alfred stands and pulls down his zipper.#batathon

This movie makes Lawrence of Arabia feel like a five second film.#aaaaaargh #batathon

THIS….FURNITURE…SET…WOULD…LOOK…LOVELY. ~ Bane, still not understanding the basics of mid-romantic interior design.#batathon

“I really had nothing to do with the decoration. It was all Bane. Especially the beads.” ~ Ivy #batathon

“My lips are immune to your charms.” ~ Robin. You know you can just hit her, right? That’s something you can do. #batathon

“Robin, pretend like you don’t recognize Barbara. It’ll make her feel included.” ~ Batman. Supportive. #batathon

Why is Vanilla Ice not in this movie? An opportunity missed, I feel.#batathon

And Coolio wasn’t used in some kind of pun battle? Seriously, guys?#batathon

In the time it took to change into matching clothing, they could have stopped murdering half of Gotham. But fashion is too important!

“Hang on, obligatory minorities! Let’s do this.” #batathon

The girl who used ‘Alfred’ as the first choice of password is a ‘computer genius’. Then my gall bladder is a fucking neurosurgeon.#batathon

“We found her. Restored her. She has her bubbles returned. Also, you do know people need oxygen? She’s been dead for years.”#batathon

Oh yeah. He has Ewan MacGregor disease, you’re naked all the time and then you’re in Star Wars. (That’s Stage Four) #batathon

And Freeze has the magical cure to ‘Stage One’ in his arm. Because he needed to have it there. All the time. #batathon

I want them all to laugh, hug, high five and then freeze frame.#batathon

DAMMIT SCHUMACHER! JUST TURN THE CAMERA OFF!#batathon

So, we have come to the end of the terribleness. I can see the light, just off in the distance… Join us this weekend. Saturday around 5pm CST we will charge into Batman Begins and then the fanboy porno that is The Dark Knight around 4pm CST on Sunday. Get ready, bitches, for some real fucking Batman.