Zombie Strippers.

This movie, starring Robert Englund (Freddy Krueger) and Jenna Jameson (accountant), exists, and had a limited theatrical run in the United States. The proof is in the picture:

...Eh, I needed to go with something less offensive here than my previous post. And yes, that is definitely Tito Ortiz in the upper left corner of the poster.


Tropic Thunder and Tom Cruise and Retarded Humor

Never did I think that 2008 would be the year I say, without sarcasm, "Tom Cruise was the highlight." In reference to...anything. But I saw Tropic Thunder last night and Tom Cruise was definitely the highlight.

Screwball comedies, in my opinion, sometimes make the effort to be too ridiculous and lose a lot of laughs. I think a lot of people will find this movie to have its hits and misses (surprising lack of hits for Jack Black, who usually makes me pee my pants). Tropic Thunder sits in a constant state of absurdity which made me laugh as much as it made me roll my eyes. The excessive amount of entrails and blood earned from me a chortle or two, along with the lack of regard for political correctness in regards to retards and the mentally retarded.

In fact, I could've used more retard humor, what with the national boycotts and uproar this film has generated for making a joke of retarded people. Frankly, I expected/hoped for a complete onslaught of retard humor. Let's face it - if you don't hold someone really close who is retarded, you laugh at retarded people jokes.

I laugh at and seek out good retard humor. Sue me.

...Okay fine, I don't actively seek out retard humor.

If you think I'm a pig, tell me you didn't laugh at Michael Scott calling Oscar gay, not like gay gay but gay like bad at sports (The Office, people, new episodes soon!). My point is, if you ever laugh at gay jokes (remember - people kill people for being gay), it's okay to laugh at an actor whapping his chest with his hand sideways while he crosses his eyes.

You know what else I like? Fool-proof logic.

A few years back, Johnny Knoxville starred in a Farrelly Brothers' comedy called The Ringer. The premise? Johnny Knoxville acts like a retard to get into the Special Olympics, prolly to nail some girl, I dunno, never saw it. The Special Olympics officially approved of this movie that makes fun of retarded people, apparently because its heart was in the right place. What horseshit. Tropic Thunder had next to nothing to do with retarded people. It's one joke revisited a few times.

I could talk about Robert Downey Jr.'s performance as a white guy playing a white guy playing a black guy. When I realized why this character didn't cause any ruckus, I felt stupid. It's so obvious. Racism is over.

Along with my retarded tangent.

But there's not much else to say about this movie. Jack Black hams it up in a bleach-blond flat-top haircut - high comedy potential that fell flat. Robert Downey Jr. continues his rise as one of the more promising careers in Hollywood, though I expected his character to be taken much less seriously. He's kind of the protagonist moving a pointless plot forward. I figured this would happen through Ben Stiller's character, aka Tuggernuts (here's lookin' at you, McConaughey), because Stiller wrote and directed it and stuff, but Tuggernuts flails around aimlessly for two hours, sometimes stumbling upon the protagonist role by chance.

But Tom Cruise. Tom Cruise was hilarious. Just see that treat for yourself.

...And I'm sorry if you found this review retarded. Or gay, for that matter. Maybe you shouldn't be such a racist, because that's so last century.


Dumb comedies rarely satiate my Giggle Palate like PINEAPPLE EXPRESS did.

So my roommate Henry says to me, "Let's see a movie." All the times sucked for everything we wanted to see. The most convenient showing would have been Star Wars: The Clone Wars, but we both concluded that of the movies we'd be willing to see, shit sandwiches like The Clone Wars rounded out the bottom of the list. It would be Tropic Thunder or Pineapple Express.

The last movie I saw starring Seth Rogen was Knocked Up, which was hilarious, fulla pot jokes (not that I understood any of them, of course), and made my mom say "That's Jonathan's friends!" when she saw it with my dad. Also, though I disagree with the statement, Rogen's line from Knocked Up, "Steely Dan gargles my balls," kept me giggling for months. Superbad was good, even though Rogen's character appeared too often in the script and was not terribly funny.
The last movie I saw starring Ben Stiller was Night at the Museum.


Pineapple Express it was.

I'm glad a few stoners finally have some sway in Hollywood. After Rogen ran out of his earthquaking home in Knocked Up with his giantly phallic bong in hand instead of his pregnant girlfriend, audiences yukked it up instead of cringing their way to the exit. After Pineapple Express (which turns out to be a SUPER strain of good pot), the brahs (think 'bros' who are stoned and way into sports, or Urijah Faber) sitting behind us stood up and said, "Man, I want some Pineapple Express!" Really?! I couldn't tell when you plopped down loudly behind me, each with popcorns the size of your torsos! Once upon a time, instead, I could've heard something about "You see what happens when you smoke pot?" Or maybe not. But affable, relatively harmless pot-smokers on the big screen is good for our media, especially when at least one of them states how dumb they get when stoned (yes, something real stoners willingly acknowledge (not that I'd know anything about that personally)). For a subculture repressed by the mainstream media through lies of the effects of marijuana, Rogen & Co. portray today's young adult male pot smokers to a T. They say things stoners all said before, like your dealer thinks he's your friend; you get eight times more high when you cough up a lung after a hit; everything's better when you're stoned, etc. And guess what? That's all they care about!

Err, so my friend...err...of a friend explained it to me anyway...

Real quick, Dale Denton (Rogen) and Saul (an awesome and undeniably sexually attractive James Franco (what? I'm secure in my hetero.)) get high together. Dale continues getting high in front of a murder and leaves his rare Pineapple Express roach on the scene. Hilarity ensues.

The difference between Rogen's blend of pot humor and that which you'll find in the Harold and Kumar movies would be reality. Granted, it's a fine line, but you'll never see a Seth Rogen character getting high with a George W Bush impersonator. Taking on a stoner-action-comedy, Rogen and Evan Goldberg (Superbad, "Da Ali G Show") attacked the script with stoner logic, should stoners happen to witness a murder. They freak out, more so than normal because they're paranoid, and the best temporary solution is to get really stoned. And forget prior obligations. And figure there's nothing to really worry about - they're just being paranoid and stoned. So fuck it, let's get more stoned.

The laughs didn't die as the action picked up and half the audience started craving another joint (well, not this guy anyway, because I never even knew what pot looked like before this movie). Impressive for a crowd of less stoned stoners. Some critics complained that the action marred the comedy, but really, who has the final say? Manohla Dargis of NYTimes or Tommy Chong? Ya dig? Far out.


Hey Wal-Mart - Don't Force Your Employees to Vote a Certain Way Because That's Illegal and Stuff

Gee whiz, Wal-Mart. For being one of the most evil corporations ever, and having a reputation for being so, you sure have gotten sloppier than a basset hound galloping away from his water dish.

A lot of people don't get their way all the time, Wal-Mart. It's a way of life. I understand how privileged you've been, what with terrorizing the world with (SMILEY FACE!) Everyday Low Prices and a little thing I like to call causing international humanitarian crises due to a complete lack of regard for ethics to get said Everyday Low Prices. But we all get a tiny slap on the wrist from those we love when we tiptoe over the line.

Well you, Wal-Mart, have crossed, shat-on on your way over, and bazooka'd as you looked back at said line, but that's besides the point.

Not even The Wall Street Journal decided to cover up that you were holding political meetings with employees nationwide in hopes of swaying their votes towards McCain through scare tactics so you won't have to worry about any unionizing for four more years. Not even your beloved, on-your-side Double-U Ess Jay.


Hey, Rod Blagojevich - Eat a Turd.

Here's the thing, Rod. You're a turd. And your first name remains synonymous with words like 'cock' and 'johnson,' to name a few.

I won't pretend like I know much about Rod Blagojevich beyond what a turd he is, but I can confidently claim that I know enough about Rod to state that he is, in fact, a turd. And he should eat himself.

About a month ago, Rod signed a gun control bill, under which the adult who provides a minor with a firearm will serve a sentence just as bad as the minor's sentence for using said firearm. Which is great, because our prison system is so excellent and rehabilitative, especially for dudes who give kids guns. Referencing the number of children murdered this summer as a primary reason for action, he said:

"Twenty-eight of those [twenty-nine murdered] kids are African-American and Latino. Hard to imagine that that would be acceptable if that were, in fact, the case in other parts of the city or in a middle-class suburb somewhere," he said. "Something is wrong, and this violence has to stop."
Good call, Rod. Thank goodness someone was brave enough to say what we were all thinking, and that the fucking National Guard might be a solution!



AAAHHHHHHHokay. Forget that CPD spokesperson Monique Bond also mentioned that 2008 is projected to be one of Chicago's least deadly years in the past 40 years, 'cause like, who ever listened to the CPD spokesperson anyway? Rod's office all but called him a numbnuts turd by reiterrating he had no plans to bring in the National Guard to stave off violent crimes, shortly after he made an ass of himself by saying he would consider bringing in the National Guard to help stave off violent crimes. Though he hadn't put much thought into it (NO, REALLY?!), other options include putting state troops in white neighborhoods so the roughnecks of the CPD can tear up the black and latino neighborhoods - again, in order to stop violence - or just asking retired cops to come back and fuck shit up. Temporarily.

I could elaborate on where the real problem is, insert some more fruitful opinions or whatever, but when our idiot governor gives idiotic opinions like bringing the National Guard to Chicago, ya know. I'm compelled to be a dick about it. Or a 'rod,' if you will.

Also - notice any resemblance?

Sorry, Michael. You didn't deserve that. But whatever.


Stanley Kauffmann says...

A few years ago, Stanley Kauffmann was first recommended to me by one of my writing professors at Knox, Robin Metz, as a film critic I need to read. Until recently, all his reviews were for 'members only' or subscribers of the The New Republic magazine. Robin described him as a 90 yr old film critic still crackin' away at films with writing as brilliant as ever. Kauffmann just reviewed a film called A Very British Gangster, a documentary about an openly gay yet Godfather-esque gangster, and he commented on something obvious regarding our enjoyment of film that I never considered.

Food for thought:

"A Very British Gangster proves yet again that one great asset of film is vicarious participation in crime. Sex is OK, adventure and fantasy and even horror are OK, but crime lets us sneer at the laws we must live by, lets us relish evil and come out unscathed. Paradoxically, we feel as if we have stepped for a while into the real world underneath the laws and proprieties, a world that generously tolerates the conventions prettily laced above it." - for 8.13.08 issue of TNR


Cutco: Fellated by the Wall Street Journal

For those who don't know, I used to sell Cutco. I have an opinion or two about it. But first, an excerpt:

The knife company in question is Cutco Cutlery, an Olean, N.Y., manufacturer with $198 million in revenue, according to Sarah Baker Andrus, director of academic programs for Vector Marketing, Cutco's sales arm. Ms. Andrus says the company brings in 60% of its sales over the summer, when a force of 40,000 -- 85% of whom are students -- fan out to ply their wares.

These junior salespeople don't receive an hourly or weekly wage. Instead they earn a commission that starts at 10% and can climb to more than 50% for top sellers. Ms. Andrus says students who work the whole summer earn an average of $3,000 to $5,000. But there are plenty who earn more.

WSJ's backlogged articles don't retain the dates they were published (stupid), but this could not be further from the truth. In 2004, I sold $10,000 worth of knives, which, by the way, is a LOT of fucking knives. Wanna know what my summer haul was? $2,000. With the sliding commission scale, pending how much you sell, you make $10,000 if you sell $25,000 worth of Cutco, and make 50% commission from there on out.


In order to make $3,000-$5,000...you gotta be thinking 'sales' for a career beforehand. They hen pick schlubs to sell maybe $500 or $1,000 worth of product before they quit, and guess what? Cutco had to pay them DICK to do it! And they have the "office stars" who most likely will find a career in sales for all the schlubs to look up to and think "WOW! THAT COULD BE ME!" until they only sell $500 and quit.

Now, she did say 'those who stay for the entire summer'... Still, I'll put it this way. The Tinley Park office in IL was one of the top 3 offices in the nation in sales, my office. Over half the people I started with were actually fired (something they imply they'll never do) and couldn't stay the whole summer. I was on the top 15 board in sales the second half of the summer. Maybe 11 or 12 people sold more than I did in the number three office in the country.

Kind of a brilliant scheme. Kind of a dick-sucking article, serving zero purpose other than publicity. Fuck the Wall Street Journal.

I copied everything after the block-quote from an email I sent to my friend Eric after he sent me that article. I was gonna write something more blog-specific, but...I didn't.