Movie News

AICN-Downunder: An Aussie's Best of... Worst of... List leads off this year's annual cine-debate

Published at: Dec. 28, 2003, 2:18 p.m. CST

Well, it had to start somewhere and why not in the land before time... the future (although they see an awful lot of flicks After the rest of the world... except for Latin America, or Africa of course).

Father Geek here with the FIRST of AICN "Best of... Worst of..." lists for this year (2003).

This one is from our man in Australia, Latauro. Keep in mine not everyone in the world sees films at the same time, or even in the same year. Many of the flicks we consider as 2003 film in the USA are a long time from screening in the Aussie outback, annnnnd some of his picks where movies we saw in 2002. Then again he names some motion pictures that he has seen that haven't opened here yet. There are some films that I (Father Geek) saw in 2002 that had their USA premiere at Butt-Numb-A-Thon on December 6, 2003 and won't make it to a theater near you till late in 2004. The point is everybody's list is based on what THEY saw... NOT necessarily what YOU saw during a given calendar year...

THANKS Latauro for having the "cajones" to start the balls a-rollin on this years debate... Ol' Father Geek's list will make it up in a couple of more days.

THE AICN-DOWNUNDER ANNUAL 2003

Howdy. There’s nothing more fun to read or write than an end-of-year best- and worst-of list. (If you disagree with this, the “Back” button is just up a bit, near the top of your screen.) It wasn’t an easy list to put together, either (when are they?). I surprised myself when STANDING IN THE SHADOWS OF MOTOWN, HULK, KILL BILL VOL. 1 and RESURRECTION OF THE LITTLE MATCH GIRL didn’t quite make the cut in the top ten, though they came awfully close. In limiting the Worst Films to three entries, I forced myself to excise the woefully boring JU-ON (THE GRUDGE). For better or worse, here are my picks for the year. Feel free to violently agree or disagree in the space provided...

THE WORST FILMS OF 2003

3. BAD BOYS II

“I don’t think too hard about it, I just have fun.”

This is the line I get from people whenever I dislike a mass-marketed Hollywood film. They assume that, because of my cinematic leanings, I can’t “lower” myself to enjoy anything that doesn’t require you to think too hard.

Well, CHARLIE’S ANGELS: FULL THROTTLE came close to entering my top ten.

It’s not about thinking too hard, or being a snob, or not “getting it”. I loved the first BAD BOYS, and wished this one could come close to echoing the harmless fun of the first. But it didn’t.

BAD BOYS II managed to justify many of the morality-themed complaints that are usually leveled at action films. Those claims that films containing copious amounts of violence are automatically endorsing it. Or disrespecting human life. Most of the time, it’s a knee-jerk reaction stemming from ignorance and fear, but sometimes a film will live down to all the standards the Moral Majority insist on imposing.

BAD BOYS II *does* promote violence. It *does* disrespect human life. In fact, it disrespects it more than any film I’ve ever seen. Even in gory slasher films, there’s always someone sad to see their friend or family member hacked up into little bits. There’s always a cost. BB2 let the dead bodies run free, and the only time either of the main characters seemed to care was when Marcus’s sister was kidnapped. “This shit just got personal,” says Marcus. Damn straight. A main character got kidnapped: it’s time to give a shit.

As a film, it’s awfully written, lazily performed, clumsily directed, at least an hour too long, and dispenses with the element that made the first one so entertaining: chemistry. There is zero chemistry between Marcus and Mike, and for 99% of the film I was convinced they loathed each other. But despite the apathetic handling of all these elements, the reason it’s getting a spot in the bottom three is because of its total inhumanity. BAD indeed.

2. STAR TREK: NEMESIS

You’re not going to see THE REAL CANCUN or GIGLI on this list. Why? Because my disposable income isn’t a destructible income. I only see films I expect I’ll enjoy, which is why the overwhelming majority of my reviews this year were positive.

Despite feeling incredibly ‘meh’ about the screenplay (like I do about everything John Logan writes), I had hopes for the film. It was an *even* STAR TREK film. Even! Though I didn’t hate INSURRECTION as much as everyone else (didn’t come across as a film to me – just a big episode), it’s the even films that kick arse, everyone knows that. Also, I’m a huge STAR TREK apologist. I’ll go to the ends of the Earth to lower my standards if it’s TREK. Why? I love it. I’m a big TREK fan, and I can’t stand the idea of any of it sucking.

Then 2003 happened. “Enterprise” began to screen in Australia: a show that dropped everything good about TREK and kept everything that sucked. I stopped watching. At least NEMESIS had the “Next Generation” crew. Maybe it would raise TREK back to the level that Berman and Braga had lowered it to before they lowered it even further. And what was the result?

(deep breath)

There was zero character motivation, the plot made no sense, the dialogue was atrocious, the action scenes were arbitrary, the cinematography was awful, an entire sequence managed to simultaneously rip off the game HALO whilst breaking the Prime Directive the show hangs on, the “humour” was embarrassing, the acting was sub-sub-par, the music was on auto-pilot, the Romulus scenes were about as boring as any scene from any film, and Data found out he had a brother... again.

Hell, even the running time pissed me off.

It pissed me off because Berman and Braga are quite openly trying to expand the TREK audience. They want ‘normal people’ to watch, so they play up the two elements that draw people to films of this ilk: action and humour. And they sacrifice the elements that aren’t as important: the science, the ideas, the intelligence, the action, and the humour.

I mentioned action and humour again because they always came naturally in TREK. Kirk would kick absolute buttage if it came to it, but only in servitude of the plot. Picard could quip with the best of them, but it would be rare. It wasn’t his character to joke all the time, so when he did it was unexpected and funny as all giddy up. Worf was never ridiculed to such depths so as to force a laugh.

It’s this dogged determination to Lowest Common Denominator TREK in all its forms that has all but ruined the franchise. And for the “Next Gen” crew to go from FIRST CONTACT to this in only two films... it’s just depressing. For these people to take advantage of a franchise created by someone else, to make an obscenely unwatchable film that will make its budget back because it’s riding on the popularity of someone else’s creation...

We all deserve better than this. Absolute shit. Though not nearly as bad as...

1. TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE

I hear it often from media students around their fifth year of high school. “I hate my media teacher!” Why is that, I ask. “Because I used to enjoy movies! Now all I do is analyse them!” I always smile at this, and quickly assure them that they will learn how to shut that part of their brain off, or at least integrate it into their subconscious. After all, I remember when I went through the phase. Suddenly I had reasons – horrible, horrible reasons – for liking or disliking films, rather than just going off my base reaction.

I got called up on this film in talkback, as well I should have. I had written the most scathing, vitriolic, hate-filled review of MASSACRE and had failed to give any reason for my dislike. Didn’t stop to explain what the film had done to inspire such loathing.

I was aware of it during the writing of the review, too. I even tried to make a list of specific things I hated, but I couldn’t do it. I didn’t know why the film had made me feel that way, I didn’t understand it. All I knew is that I loathed it more than I’ve ever loathed a film. What I mean is, I’d never actually loathed a film before. I thought I had, but I hadn’t. For the duration of two hours, TCM had me on the side of those who say films should be banned and censored. That violence is gratuitous and has no place in real cinema. It had me on the complete opposite of the ideological spectrum than the one I reside on, and it scared me.

I’m not going to revisit the film to try and work out why I hated it. I mean, I do have examples and moments and some superficial reasons for why I hated certain elements... BUT why it did to me what it did, I’ll never know. I wish I could give you a more satisfying explanation, but I cannot. I can’t give myself one. All I know is that I found this so-called “remake” of TCM to be a vile and hate-filled piece of shite.

TOP TEN OF 2003

This was pretty difficult list to put together. Surprisingly, the top five were easy. It was six-to-ten that gave me headaches. At various points, I had SCHOOL OF ROCK and STANDING IN THE SHADOWS OF MOTOWN in there, and as much as I loved those films, I really had to rate them in order of love. And, much to my dismay, that put more “serious” films ahead. Oh well, there’s always next year.

10. LOST IN TRANSLATION

I wrote my review for this film only a week ago, so I feel as if it’s all been said. But to recap: Coppola brilliant, Murray brilliant, Johannsen brilliant.

It’s such a slow burn film, a film that can dissect what it means to be a fish-out-of-water without resorting to clichés or bordering-on-actionable stereotypes. These characters are lost in life, they don’t understand the life they’ve built for themselves, and they cannot understand anyone around them. Regardless of whether those people speak the same language.

The messages are clear, but not ham-fisted. And it’s a film that pretty much sums up what Murray’s been doing in films lately: an amazing career renaissance that is pretty much blowing away anything he’s done before.

A worthy follow-up to VIRGIN SUICIDES and, hopefully, a promise of what’s to come.

9. PIRATES OF THE CARRIBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL

This film would not be on the list if it weren’t for Johnny Depp. It’s one of the rare moments where one elements of a film can catapult it up onto a list that caused many follicles to be ripped out in the title-culling process.

I mean, everything else is great. This is, I believe, Gore Verbinski’s best work. The production values are sensational. The cast are all great. And the script – gawd bless the script – put the swashbuckle back into the pirate film. I mean, seriously: when was the last time you saw a good pirate film? It had Gene Kelly or Errol Flynn in it, didn’t it?

But Johnny Depp’s performance added something. His interpretation of Jack Sparrow as a rock star was spot-on. Whereas most other actors would try to play him as the cool thief, Depp managed to relate him back to the celebrity of today. Sparrow is notorious, but a drunk, but a talent, but an exaggerated tale...? You’re never quite sure where the legend ends and man begins. It was Hunter S. Thompson and Keith Richards splicing their genes to create a child and then sending him back hundreds of years to become a pirate.

I’m glad that they’ve adjusted their plans to make a sequel so they now intend to make *two* sequels. It’s rare that we get a period action film that delivers on every front, but to get one with a character as rare and fascinating and watchable as Sparrow? Keep making ’em, fellas.

8. THE PIANIST

I’m not writing this list in the order than you’re reading it (unless you’re also jumping from fourth spot to second to sixth to fifth, etc), so I’m sort-of skimming over what I’ve put in here so far. I’ve managed to do what I’ve always dreaded, and gone with the Critic’s Choice. Yes, all the Big Deep Intellectual Emotional Films are on this list, all the ones that the chin-stroking bespectacled reviewers nod knowingly at and respond with phrases like “tour de force”. Me, I’m the guy who (were I writing this list in, say, 2000) would be grappling between FIGHT CLUB and TOY STORY 2. Who (in 1997) would have a list containing both FEAR AND LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS and SPICEWORLD (believe it). Also, I’m writing this for Ain’t It Cool, so I feel there should be at least one comic book adaptation with gushing cunnilingus euphemisms (heheh... gushing).

So sue me, the arthouse fare was particularly good this year. And THE PIANIST was brilliant. Many of the Oscar contenders in previous years tend to get their Australian releases around Oscar season to help drum up business and cash in on the awards publicity (this is year is unexpectedly different – not sure why). That’s why earlier this year, whilst Catherine was standing in front of a mirror practicing her weeping, we got THE PIANIST, THE HOURS, FAR FROM HEAVEN, et al released in one bit hit.

THE PIANIST was a masterstroke, a tour de force (yeah, I said it) from a filmmaker who had not yet topped his earlier career highlight, the amazing CHINATOWN. I have something of a Jewish heritage, and have heard many stories from relatives and family friends about life in Europe half-a-century ago. This is the first holocaust film I’ve seen that correlated with the stories I’d been told. That gave me some sort of visual and near-tangible connection to it all. Polanski never shied away from the reality of the situation, but was clever enough to balance out all the aspects of this man’s life. We received the full range of human emotions within the context of the atrocity.

But I don’t want it to be like I put it in the list because I’m Jewish and trying to prove a point, or that “it was emotional, so it must be good”. As a reviewer, I’m a film lover first and foremost, and regardless of its subject matter this film was a sensation. It’s everything a film that strives to re-create moments in history should be.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to find a copy of EVIL DEAD 2 and exorcise the Critic out of me.

7. THE HOURS

There’s a quality that the novelist Chuck Palahniuk has in his work, which is the ability to make anything exciting. The same way Billy Connolly would be pants-wettingly funny reading the phone book, Palahniuk manages to make a random chapter close keep you on the end of your seat. Make you desperate for the next sentence, even if nothing is really happening.

This is what Stephen Daldry did with THE HOURS. There are so many places where this film could have been less than it was, where it could have faltered, but it didn’t. It never went for the obvious dialogue. It steeped itself deep within its symbolism, but never drowned in it. For a film where nothing really happens, it made every scene riveting and every moment important.

The thought that kept going through my head upon second viewing was, “I could never make this film.” I’m not sure if I’d ever have the self-awareness or self-control to avoid going for the obvious emotional moment, to do what this film so masterfully did. And yet never seemed fake. Never seemed forced.

Also, cool nose.

6. MYSTIC RIVER

For my money, the straight drama is the hardest genre to work. It’s like the lawyer film. How do you come up with an idea that’s big enough to fill a film when every week we have Dick Wolf and David E. Kelley trying to outdo themselves on the television? When an hour-long slot can contain plot twists and legal loopholes and massive murder trials... what idea could justify $20 million and one year plus of work?

It’s sort-of the same with dramas, although not quite. Drama on TV is less about the Big Idea of the Week than it is the soap-operative lives of the main characters. The continuing tragedies of dating and dying. Love and death. And yet straight-out cinematic drama is a tough sell because it lacks that ominous Big Idea. It’s why (capital G) Genre is so popular. LORD OF THE RINGS gives us the Big Idea of a world with Elves and Rings and Ents, and yet it also quenches our thirst for drama. And it handles that drama better than most dramas, cinematic and televisual, so what happens to the pure genre of drama? Do we even need it anymore?

These were the thoughts that were dancing about my subconscious as I was watching MYSTIC RIVER. A well-made film, a well-directed film and a well-acted film for sure, but the tingling feeling in my occipital lobe still made me wonder what I was doing there. All that stuff I said in the above, that’s not just a clever yet presumptive analysis of demographics; that’s pretty much how I myself feel. This was one of two films this year (the second being... well, keep reading) that reminded me what can be done when you restrict yourself to the possible, the probable, and human nature.

It’s the closing minutes of MYSTIC that do it. It’s the final moments. The Greek tragedy of it all, the exchanged looks, the horrific logic... that people can know what horrific lengths they can go to, and don’t mind. More than don’t mind, they wear it as a badge. As frightening as the metaphors of technology gone mad or an all-controlling eye of power are, they can never match the reality of human nature. The way we can justify our most terrifying actions and believe it.

A story like this could not be told on television with ad breaks, nor as the B-plot to an SF/fantasy. The Big Idea in MYSTIC RIVER comes at the end; it comes in a monologue, it comes in expressions, and it comes during a parade.

5. JAPANESE STORY

I knew for a while that I’d be making a list like this at the end of the year, and the desire to put an Australian film on the list was big. I thought BAD EGGS was terrific, but it just didn’t cut the Big List for me. For a while I felt that I’d have to put together a non-Australian/mostly-American Best Of... List and use that as a cutting indictment of the local film industry and why nobody sees our films. (In this column, everything can be turned into a comment on Australian cinema – I consider it a weekly challenge.)

Then I saw JAPANESE STORY.

It’s a film that’s clearly About Something. It’s a film that clearly knows what it’s doing from start to finish. It’s a film that can pretty much define the term “economy of storytelling”.

There’s so much to be said about this film, but so little if you haven’t seen it. As in, the only people I’ve been able to discuss this film with to any degree of depth has been others who have seen it, and that’s not always the case with movies. It would be a shame for me to spoil any of the moments for anyone who hasn’t seen it, so I’ll refrain.

But it’s not just a high mark for an Australian film: it’s a high mark for women. A woman wrote the script, another woman directed it, another woman produced it, and the main character is played by a woman (a gender Toni Collette is becoming typecast in...). It’s an industry where – more often than not – men dominate the behind-the-scenes roles. It was rare, and unexpectedly refreshing, to see a film made primarily by the Gentler Sex. If all that sounds patronising, please understand that is not my intent. I only mean to point out that the stereotype of women only being able to direct romantic comedies with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan needs to be put to rest, and JAPANESE STORY should aid that.

Aussies, when this film hits the video store, go out and get it. Don’t go for the easy watch, the low-maintenance predictable trash we all end up getting when we don’t want to be emotionally or intellectually taxed. Anyone outside of Australia, this will surely be hitting the festival circuit and I suggest you seek it out. You’ll be a different person at the end.

4. FINDING NEMO

It’s almost a cliché, these Pixar films. I myself can be accused of complacency when it comes to them. See, I’ve come to expect perfection. TOY STORY, A BUG’S LIFE, TOY STORY 2, MONSTER’S INC... there’s only so many seamless films you can make in a row before your audience begins to expect nothing less. And I, my friends, have reached that point.

Luckily, Pixar is able to exceed those expectations. They’ve built themselves a wonderful formula that is never constricting or limiting. It never stops them from trying new things – it just helps to bring definition to the world in which these stories can be told.

I heard a Pixar employee once state the John Lasseter would be no less entertaining if all he had were socks on his hands. I’m inclined to agree. The only amendment I’d make to that statement is to expand it so it includes the others who work there. NEMO, written and directed by Andrew Stanton, is proof that Lasseter was clever enough to hire people as brilliant as he.

This film brought a tear to my eye, and I’m sorry to say I’ve seen it only once. This, of course, will be amended when I get my hands on the DVD and prove it is in fact possible to, through overuse, wear down a digital signal.

3. VOLCANO HIGH

Okay, J. K. Rowling isn’t a British author, or a woman, or middle-aged. She’s a twenty-four year old Korean filmmaker, and she’s just been given the rights to the X-MEN property. Also, she loves video games and John Hughes films.

That’s how I’d describe VOLCANO HIGH, a film that took me completely by surprise. Brilliantly combining laugh-out-loud humour with eye-popping special effects, the film manages to do what this sentence could not: avoid cliché.

This film got third spot because it went all-out on entertainment value. It didn’t worry about themes or depth, but it didn’t use that as an excuse to be dumbed-down story-less special effects. Kept me riveted to the end.

2. TOUCH OF SPICE

Odds are, most of you haven’t heard of this film. I know I hadn’t. Had I not been asked to attend a private screening of the film, I still wouldn’t have. Of course, if you’re living in Greece there’s a good chance you know about this film. It has just overtaken TITANIC to become the highest-grossing film in Greek cinema history.

So what is it? That’s a tough one. Try this: it’s about food. It’s about spices and ingredients and what culinary flavour means what. But it’s also about love, religion, astronomy, war, racism, sex, men, family, traveling and time. Simultaneously, the film manages to be about one thing and a million things. And yet it’s never forced, it’s never overwhelming. At no point does the balance fall short of perfection. This is the level that films aspire to be.

If it were stacked in a Greek video store (where the category of “Foreign” would be irrelevant to this film), it would probably go in the “Drama” section. And yes, it is a drama. But it’s a comedy and a romance as well. Not since Lasse Hallstrom’s MY LIFE AS A DOG has love between two children been so beautifully portrayed. It’s the tightest script I think I’ve ever seen on the screen, and yet its pacing is never compromised. It shows beauty without ever bordering on saccharine.

But don’t expect kitchen sink. This isn’t dogma grit, or single hand-held shots lasting minutes. The production values are superb, the shot design is incredibly detailed, the music is brilliant. No element falls short for even a moment; each complements the others.

Village Roadshow Australia, a co-producer on the film, is trying to get an arthouse release for the film in both Australia and the US. I hope they do – it would be a crime if they didn’t. This is not a film you see because critics believe it to be thematically deep and structurally obscure enough to give five stars to. This is not a film you see so you can say, “I saw this terrific Greek film on the weekend...” to prove how expansive your tastes are. No, this is a film you see if you love film and feel you deserve two hours of cinematic perfection. Do not hesitate.

1. LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING

I don’t know what to say. I don’t know what to write. After watching FOTR:EE and TTT:EE on DVD and then heading to the cinema directly afterwards, I feel like writing a dissertation on every scene, every moment, every character. Really going into it. Writing an article it would take longer to read than it would to watch the films. Sure, nobody would read it, but it’s what I want to do.

How do I talk about a film that has had such a profound effect on me in only a few paragraphs? I guess I can start with the fact that I first read “Lord of the Rings” when I was seven, last read it a couple of years ago, and even during scenes where I knew every movement back to front, I was still shaking with anticipation. Shaking. White knuckles. Edge of the seat. Clichés, all, but they were happening.

I think I’m going to write a big LOTR review when the ROTK:EE comes out (not the big one I promised earlier, thank God). For now, it’s still too soon and I’m still too blown away. I can barely type.

Perfect.

Well, that’s me for the year. Thanks for reading, and thanks for the continuing feedback. Hope you all have a great New Years, and I look forward to AICN-Downunder in 2004. See you soon...

Peace out,

Latauro

downunder@aintitcoolmail.com

Readers Talkback

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  • Dec. 28, 2003, 2:34 p.m. CST

    FRIST BTICHES!

    by lopan

    uh...like didn't some of these movies copme last year? --LP

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 2:41 p.m. CST

    I just got back from ROTK.... I'm in agreement with Moriarty on

    by TheGinger Twit

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 2:55 p.m. CST

    ROTK/ BB2

    by Darth Thoth

    Good writeup Latauro. I agree that ROTK was the best (at least my favorite) film of the year. Easily. I have to say though, Bad Boys II was a great fun summer movie. I think Smith and Lawrence have great chemistry and I'm surprised that there are only 2 Bad Boys movies to date. We need some more! Non-stop shoot 'em up action and laughs.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 3:02 p.m. CST

    The "WORST OF" list was dead-on, IMHO.

    by Pvt. Duke

    I can't comment on Star Trek, because I've never seen a Trek flick (nor do I ever intend to), but BB2 and TCM were fucking godawful -- and I LOVE to defend Michael Bay. (Bay's fingerprints are all over TCM). I've always enjoyed debating my more jaded and pretentious peers on the purely entertainment-based escapism in which the majority of Bay's (earlier) movies revel with arrogant, frat-boyish glee. Lately though, Bay just seems angry. He admitted that the over-the-top violence in BB2 was a reaction to the (Lieberman-led?) anti-something-or-other which was -- and is -- attempting to crack-down on Hollywood violence. Did BB2 actually HELP Bay's cause? It did nothing to "stick it" to politicians like Gore and Lieberman. Guys like Lieberman and Bill O'Rielly (sp?) demonstrate their ignorance by, for example, stating that a person who smoked dope ONCE (omigod) is not fit to lead a country. Who is? The social reject living a sheltered existence in the land of trust-funds and dinner parties? Furthermore, they demonstrate their fear by overstating the effect of the media on we, the vulnerable youth. Still, Bay is no better, and his "revenge" does not help to highlight film as a political scapegoat. If anything, it put total film censorship in a Porche Carerra with a full tank of gas and points it straight to the top of every right-wing politician's agenda. Bay has the ability to entertain, but he should lead the freedom-fighting to someone more edumacated and enlightened than he. I guess. But what the fuck do I know.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 3:08 p.m. CST

    Corection

    by Pvt. Duke

    I have no bloody idea as to Lieberman's stance on marijuana (although I'm pretty sure he's not a fan), and I meant that Bay should LEAVE the freedom fighting to someone else.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 3:11 p.m. CST

    coRRection

    by Pvt. Duke

    It's just that, if some net-nerd critiques my spelling, I'll snap. My apologies for the many posts.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 3:33 p.m. CST

    lopan

    by Grando

    Uh....didn't you read the whole article?

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 4:10 p.m. CST

    good list, but worse films were missing

    by eudofarkencrog

    Not that it will make any difference whatsoever, but I would have to agree with Latauro's list of best and worst films of 2003, though I would have added 2 more films under the worst category that were missing: T3 and Matrix Revolutions. I know this would cause a bit of a stir with all those people who thought those films were great, but considering the lead up to them, and the money spent on making them (though obviously they ran out of money when it came to paying the writers) they were woefully dissapointing. Sure they had great special effects, most movies (though not all) have great special effects to cover up huge holes in the story line, but tell me where T3 would have been without the big chase with the crane, and where revolutions would have been without the myriad of fight/flying sequences? In both cases, the studios should have rested on their laurels after making the first films and not gone out to cash in on a franchise to the expense of degrading the first experience. I am sorry for all those die-hard fans who can not judge a film because they convince themselvs how good a film will be before they watch it. There's no npoint in trying to convince you of my opinion (and that is all it is, an opinion, so don't get all huffy and belligerent back at me.) They were both just polly-wolly crappy.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 4:25 p.m. CST

    It matters not how problematic ROTK was..

    by Amy Chasing

    It's still the best film of the year (of many years perhaps). I loved Kill Bill, Pirates of the Caribbean, X-Men 2, and they all did what they set out to do in the style they wanted - all are excellent examples of films being done right. But ROTK had the added difficulty of having to get a book adaptation right, a book that was written in a rush (so I've heard, Tolkien wasn't happy about this - but his publishers wanted the end of the story pronto), is a real "excrement hits the airconditioning" story all the while keeping the emotion real and in context with what has come before. Also, ROTK is an epic adventure movie to be mentioned in the same breath as Lawrence of Arabia - and that's no mean feat in this jaded age of over-used CGI and big money-spinning rather than good story-telling. ROTK is beautiful. It is beauty. That's all I think PJ and Co could have wanted. And that's why it's my no.1 film of the decade so far.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 4:27 p.m. CST

    NOT the best movie of the year

    by Garbageman33

    It seems to me that ROTK was annointed the best movie of the year long before it even came out. I can understand why everyone WANTED it to be incredible (last in a trilogy, investment in the characters, blah, blah, blah). But, to me, the actual movie just doesn't deserve all the accolades it's likely to receive. Yes, the battle scenes were probably the coolest battle scenes I've ever seen. It's the rest of the movie I had problems with. First of all, Gollum lost much of his charm (if you want to call it that) when he became a wholly evil character. The beauty of Gollum in TT was that you weren't sure if he was with them or against them. Gollum didn't even seem to be sure himself. That, to me, gave the character much more depth than he had in ROTK. My bigger problem, though, was the ham-fisted ending. The scene with each character entering Frodo's room one at a time, laughing at, well, I'm not sure what and then jumping and frolicking on the bed was cheesy at best and homo-erotic at worst. I can't believe they missed the opportunity for a group hug. Likewise, the scene where Sam said he would have married this hobbit woman if he had the chance and then, by golly, the moment he gets back, he makes his big move, and oh boy, what a surprise, now they're married and have two beautiful babies, who could've seen that coming? And don't even get me started on Erwyn hiding behind a curtain and revealing herself to Aragorn. Frankly, I was shocked. I had no idea it would be her. I mean, come on, the ending made dancing Ewoks seem subtle by comparison. I honestly feel like I would have enjoyed the movie more if I had walked out with 20 minutes to go. And while I can't discount the rest of the movie just because of a heavy-handed ending, I certainly wouldn't call it the best movie of the year. In my mind, that honor belongs to either Lost In Translation and City of God. So let the flaming begin.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 4:29 p.m. CST

    Here we go...

    by zacdilone

    ...with another collection of worthless, bandwith-wasting top 10 lists. Who are these people? Why should I care what they think?

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 5:07 p.m. CST

    Seabiscuit

    by Everborn

    Hallo. This movies SUCKED! It was beyond klich

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 5:25 p.m. CST

    X2

    by T-MACK 1.01

    I hope people remember back to those first weeks of May, before The Matrix Reloaded shit-stormed the globe, where this little film gave all it could and proved not only to be vastly entertaining, but that Bryan Singer is the man.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 5:48 p.m. CST

    My fav five

    by Darth Thoth

    1. ROTK, 2. X2, 3. Kill Bill V.1 & The Last Samurai (tie), 5. Matrix Revolutions. But I'm a bias geek so what do I know? I still haven't seen Mystic River, The Human Stain, and Tupac Ressurection, which I heard where all excellent so in NO WAY am I a good/ reliable critic. lol. I have some serious movie viewing to get caught up on. But oh well. By the way, happy holidays everyone! God bless!

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 6:02 p.m. CST

    Thannnnnnnks Father Geek, I'll keep that in mine

    by mookiedood

    bleh

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 6:12 p.m. CST

    another worthless, bandwith-wasting list

    by gigaloff

    1-Kill Bill/RotK (tie),3-Ping Pong, 4-Hero, 5-Cowboy Bebop:Knocking on heaven's door, 6-Hulk, 7-28 days later, 8-X men 2, 9-Pirates of the Caribbean, 10-the Animatrix (if that counts, otherwise it would have to be revolutions), 11-Dogville

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 6:37 p.m. CST

    to Johnny Suede (SPOILERS below for those who haven't read LOTR)

    by Amy Chasing

    Well, it all depends on what you like in a film and/or if you are a fan of the book. For me the ending (the whole ending, including credits) was necessary and beautiful. It was something special to see things I've only read about playing out infront of my eyes. If you only want action, sfx, and bang for your buck - leave after the destruction of the Ring. But that's not what LOTR is about, and the ending reflects that. To see what happens to Frodo & Sam, the pain they share, and the ways they deal with it.. I still can't explain my feelings about this. The film moved me deeply, and it wouldn't have done this to the extent it did without the ending. Also, the pencil sketches they show over the end credits are lovely - a real touch of class.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 9:21 p.m. CST

    2002 films in a 2003 list because..

    by Amy Chasing

    It's an Australian top 10, and some films that were out in the States in 2002 only came out in Australia this year. So while it may not technically be a "best-of 2003" list, it is a best-of list of films this year for Latauro.

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 9:34 p.m. CST

    "flawed statements" (to mynameisnobody)..

    by Amy Chasing

    Yes, I suppose the first couple lines I wrote was a flawed statement. I'm a flawed kinda cat. But I did then follow them up with reasons why I love ROTK and consider it the best film I've seen for a long time. I know the problems in it. I watched it, same as you. But while you may find it hard to say it's the best film of the year, I don't - and I said why. So let's not point out flaws in single sentences without considering the paragraph as a whole - or indeed the film. :-)

  • Dec. 28, 2003, 11:14 p.m. CST

    A good list...

    by Fantomex

    I hate to say it, but this guy is dead on about Trek. First Contact was amazing. Insurrection was as good as a long episode. Nemesis was god awful.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 12:17 a.m. CST

    Uh..... what?

    by Grando

    "2. Shots lifted directly from famous films. For instance, Eowyn striking the elephant's feet -- taken directly from ESB...when Luke is destroying the AT-ATs with his saber." Hm, I must have missed the scene in ESB where Luke rides the Taun Taun under that AT-AT and slashes at it's ankles with his lightsaber.......

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 1:14 a.m. CST

    Verbinski's a clever director

    by Ribbons

    But he's not really suited for epic movies. He doesn't know how to utilize the entire screen to create scope.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 1:19 a.m. CST

    And, pre-emptively

    by Ribbons

    Before anyone says, "Well nobody said Peter Jackson would make a good candidate for LotR until he did it, and did it brilliantly," I recognize that "unconventional" direction can work in sweeping films. I'm just saying that it seems like he's a little uncomfortable with handling large groups of people. The only reason it worked at the end of the movie is because enough characters had already been established for us to invest our attention in quick, personal cuts. Actually, I probably shouldn't have said anything at all, since the comment is subjective as all hell and it added nothing to this talkback, but you get the idea.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 1:44 a.m. CST

    'Problematic', my ass!

    by Cash Bailey

    You people suck. If you can't give yourself over to the unparalelled awesomeness of RETURN OF THE KING then what the fuck are you doing in a cinema. Never forget, he who is against LORD OF THE RINGS is against cinema. You might as well go back to smearing feces on cave walls.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 4:05 a.m. CST

    The one thing I do like about Latauro ...

    by bioforge

    ..that he is honest. Thats the one and only reason I read reviews of the red headed bastard as well. He puts his feelings in print not just his education . I may not agree with everything but I'll read it anyway 'cause I know where he comes from. Something that is sadly amiss among most film reviewers.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 4:06 a.m. CST

    mynameisshit - an obvious and ham-fisted Miramax plant, is just

    by the flashlight

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 4:44 a.m. CST

    because I have no life, I will respond to mynameisshit's blather

    by the flashlight

    "The dialogue in the film was sub-par" - Wrong. The dialogue throughout the trilogy was the most literate of any films I've ever seen. Then again, I'm sure you're a fan of AOTC's lyrical declarations of love. "For instance, the Witch King states, "No man can kill me." Then Eowyn shouts, "I'm no man...I'm a WOMAN!" - Wrong. This right here demonstrates that you haven't even seen the film. Eowyn never says "I'm a woman!" Dipshit. And her dramatic line has evoked positive crowd reactions at every screening I've attended. "And, no...this bit of dialogue is NOT in the book...it was invented by "Frances Walsh" and "Philippa Boyens." Misogynistic pig. Your real problem is with the fact that two women helped write the script and dared to inject some emotional depth and a love story into the proceedings, two things the tale desperately needed. Or are you now passing yourself off as a Tolkien purist? "For instance, Eowyn striking the elephant's feet -- taken directly from ESB...when Luke is destroying the AT-ATs with his saber." Jesus H. Christ, now you demonstrate that you've never even watched Empire. Yeah, Luke's in the snow speeder, he doesn't run between the walker's legs and hack at them with the saber, you fucking idiot. "You can call them homages...I call them knock-offs. Come up with original sequences." Get a fucking clue - it would take years to list all the "homages" and outright plagarism Lucas committed in making the Wars trilogy, including ripping off LOTR. There isn't anything in ROTK even remotely reminiscent of ROTJ. "Unrealisitic physics." - Not even worth responding to - it's called fantasy you fucking retard. Why don't we discuss Spiderman for unrealistic physics? "Battle scenes were too sterilized. No blood splashes, no severed limbs, etc. It's too clean." Awwww....did the pathetic little Columbine-kid wannabe not get enough blood and gore, with emotionless superpeople in black leather and sunglasses blowing away an army of policemen? "The 15 gadzillion endings." Asked and answered by a million different people here, but conveniently ignored because you're simply here trolling. "Sometimes, complete finality is a bad thing." Wrong. "I believe it's better to let the audience imagine a character's fate sometimes." Which is why you'll never be making a movie of your own - because you suck ass. "As a result, the ending becomes tedious and vapid." The ending is beautiful, touching, and poignant. "Saruman isn't in the film...the audience doesn't know what happened to him. We run across his orb, but we aren't certain of his fate. His death scene should have been left in." Again with Saruman, you're grasping at straws now. "Sam carries Frodo only about ten yards...not even to the entrance and puts him down." - Wrong. If you're gonna troll, at least see the movie so you can be accurate. Sam carries him for a long ways, and doesn't put Frodo down, he's attacked by Gollum. "it gets tiring to hear about how "the strawberries and pies" are great there." - You knew where the exit was (although it's already been firmly established that you've not actually seen the film). [snip the "hobbits are gay and I'm an ignorant homophobe section] - now you're hit bottom dredging up this old canard. "An example would be right at the end of the battle. They gaze deeply within each other's eyes...gently caressing each other's hands. It felt like the two were going to start kissing." - Or maybe it was that he'd found him on the battlefield after not knowing whether he'd ever see him again, and was overcome with emotion. That's how people who have real, true friends feel about them, not that you would know anything about it. 8. "Bad accents." - Yeah, you're just a tad late with this "criticism", aren't ya? "Why didn't the walking trees help in the final battles?" Because they stayed behind at Isengard to watch Saruman and restore the land to beauty. Again, you haven't seen the film. "Why didn't the Eagles just fly Sam and Frodo to Mt. Doom?" - Bwhahahahaha.....oh man, I've got to hand it to you, bringing out the old eagle theory that's been floating around these talkbacks for three years...so very fucking sad.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 6:03 a.m. CST

    relax people

    by The DoublePoster

    I agree with Johnny Suede. Flashlight, you need to calm down. If you disagree with him, do it without being so petty. Mynameisnobody offered a very rational explanation of why he doesn't like ROTK. By the way, I completely disagree with him and thought it was one of the best films I've ever seen, on par with the greatest of epics. In a later post (I'm too lazy right now), I'll try to say why. But, even I have to admit, a few of the things he says were dead-on. That Eowyn-Witchking dialogue was obviously put in to kowtow to the female audience. It was a flaw. Also, Shelob hitting Frodo in the chest doesn't make sense. BUT, again I say the movie was awesome.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 12:14 p.m. CST

    **Yawn** - I fed the trolls, and predictably they have no respon

    by the flashlight

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 12:20 p.m. CST

    And Suede is still a closeted sausage smoker.....

    by the flashlight

    ...in case anyone was wondering

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Flashlight is correct

    by morGoth

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 6:11 p.m. CST

    I love this High Fidelity type of thing.

    by MaulRat

    The top 5 lists..... BEST 1. LOTR:ROTK 2. Cold Mountain (say what you want) 3. Seabuscuit 4. Finding Nemo 5. Lost in translation Honourable mentions - School of Rock... Matrix Reloaded & Revolutions (for those who bitch about the way it ends.. sit down and watch all 3 again on DVD, you'll see the point eventually).. I saw where it was going in the middle of Reloaded.. AND Pirates of the Caribbean, the only bitch I have about that is at the end when the sexiest tomboy beanpole looks at Orlando sex on legs and says to her father "He's a pirate".... yikes. WORST 1. Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. Charlies fucking Angels II 3. Bad Bays II 4. T3 (while alot of it was pretty fun, there was something that just didn't sit right with me) 5. 2 Fast 2 Fucked (a word to everyone out there, when you're at the flicks and you ask the girl you're with "what do you want to see?".. Don't be a pussy and say "OK" to whatever shit she comes up with.. stand your ground like a man.. I learned that the hard way). Dishonourables - "Hulk" most of it was not bad, but that fucking ending shits me to tears.. what the fuck were they thinking. ***BAMF***

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 7:37 p.m. CST

    Of couse, mynameisshit contradicts himself...

    by the flashlight

    ...by saying that the final fate of characters should be left to the audience's imagination....but he then goes on to complain about the Saruman footage being left out. We really need a new crop of AICN trolls, these pretenders aren't worth a damn. When they have to resort to the "hobbits are gay/homoerotic subtext" and "eagles could carry them to Mt. Doom" and "LOTR is racist" arguments, you know they've completely run out of ideas. Kind of like Berman and Braga did years ago. Sorry kids, trolls a lot better than you were flinging those accusations around 4 years ago - give me something original to respond to.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 8:29 p.m. CST

    I love it when I'm called a fanboy!

    by morGoth

    Thanks mnin {[:^) BTW, they're not "flaws" just because you say so.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 8:34 p.m. CST

    ...and, you were the one who brought up the books.

    by morGoth

    Please make up your mind. ** I completely agree that the movies should stand alone...they do.

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 8:35 p.m. CST

    I agree and disagree with MyNameIsNobody

    by Jaquen

    I

  • Dec. 29, 2003, 10:03 p.m. CST

    more matrix talk

    by The DoublePoster

    I'm tired of all these people missing the point of Matrix Revolutions. For an intelligent dissection of the movie, go to http://skyline_10.tripod.com/

  • Dec. 30, 2003, 4:26 a.m. CST

    Alright

    by Ribbons

    I'm certainly no apologist for these movies and I have my own set of problems with the theatrical release of 'Return of the King,' but Eowyn's statement of "I am no man" is not one of them. I have a feeling that you're looking at its utterance and recalling feminist movements, wondering whether women really have bigger swords than men, whatever. In the context of the movie, it's nothing more or less than a personal victory and an affirmation of Merry and her being active members of Middle-Earth (she's not a bra-burner; she's shown snuggling with Faramir at "Elessar's" (that one's for you, morGy) induction for Pete's sake) and is one of the most triumphant lines in the entire series, in my opinion.

  • Dec. 30, 2003, 1:49 p.m. CST

    Eowyn and the Lord of the Nazg

    by SirVincealot

    "A sword rang as it was drawn. 'Do what you will; but I will hinder it, if I may.' 'Hinder me? Thou fool. No living man may hinder me!' Then Merry heard of all sounds in that hour the strangest. It seemed that Dernhelm laughed and the clear voice was like the ring of steel. 'But no living man am I! You look upon a woman. Eowyn I am, Eomund's daughter. You stand between me and my lord and kin. Begone." From THE RETURN OF THE KING by J.R.R. Tolkien

  • Dec. 30, 2003, 2:13 p.m. CST

    Ok Seen it four times now; and, Sorry to those that say otherwis

    by Skyway Moaters

    ... but unless there's two drastically different prints out there, Eowyn does NOT say "I am a Woman!". All she says is "I am no man!" and promptly proceeds to shove her sword into Angmar's invisible mush, which is level with her sword arm at this point owing to Merry's stab to the back of the knee having brought him to his knees as he is clutching Eowyn by the throat. Perhaps those hearing: " I am [a] Woman!" are just 'mis-hearing'(?); the film does get pretty loud during The Battle of the Pelennor...

  • Dec. 30, 2003, 3:16 p.m. CST

    He's no Tolkien fan...

    by Achilles

    I have no problem with people gushing about the "Lord of the Rings". They were really phenomenal films. Great acting, amazing effects, incredible production values. But... no real Tolkien fan can see those films and claim to have wept because the book is coming to life on screen. They aren't the books, they don't stick to the story; in the case of Two Towers, the film isn't even CLOSE to the book. For three years now, I have watched the films, having waiting with great anticipation to see the books that I love with every ounce of my being, that I have read every year for the last 20 years, come to life. And invariably I find myself saying "why did they cut that?", "why did they change that that?", "what the hell did they do that for?", and quite frequently "if I see Liv Tyler on screen one more time, I'm going f***ing postal". Great films, no doubt about that. But if you truly love the books, the films are a disappointment. One caveat: if you are able to separate the two, and not expect to see the book on the screen, then you will enjoy them. This is, after all, just one man's interpretation. Me, I'm not able to do that.

  • Dec. 30, 2003, 4:02 p.m. CST

    Sorry for you Achillies...

    by morGoth

    ...truly. I'm a long time Tolkien reader and I made up my mind, after spending some time seeing the spoilers and things on this site, that I was going to try and "un-read" the books. "I don't care!" became my mantra. While I partially agree with you, I think Jackson and crew were as faithful to the books as could be expected in a modern day epic blockbuster movie framework. Say what you will but I hope you at least acknowledge that everyone invloved really poured thier hearts out fro these movies. Of course, my hope is that someday befor I leave this orb that someone will do an even MORE faithful version. However, for the first ever live action attempt, I am simply agog that PJ did as well as he did. Eglerio Peter Jackson!

  • Dec. 31, 2003, 2:30 p.m. CST

    more on frodo's wounds

    by raker

    is it just me or is frodo still carrying the nasty bruise from the cave troll in moria?

  • Dec. 31, 2003, 2:48 p.m. CST

    by brandnewchair

    It's rather humorous (and obvious) which posts mynameisnobody chose to use a thesaurus on. I pride myself on having a decent vocabulary, and I think better word usage is a good thing, but some of your sentences were borderline ridiculous. If you actually do use all of your "better vocabulary is 10 weeks" buzz-words in everyday discussions, remind me never to invite you anywhere.

  • Jan. 1, 2004, 8:14 a.m. CST

    No, flashback is kidding

    by Planck

    "two things ...deperately needed". Desperately needed to do what? Transform Tolkien's work imto another mass market paperback fantasy novel? I find it somewhat disturbing when people out of their own lack of understanding the material they deal with consider its non-compliance with their expectations a flaw. The degree to which the elements you crave are present is perfectly in line with material actually similar in narrative mode and literary goal. If you don't like a genre, don't read it, but don't complain that aspects of a book mandated by its genre are actually a flaw.

  • Jan. 1, 2004, 8:23 a.m. CST

    morGoth

    by Planck

    Sorry, morGoth, but pouring your heart out isn't enough when handling someone else's creation. You need to at least know what you are holding in your hands and what it is about. It is painfully evident that Jackson never, ever, read Tolkien's letters, and that he is more concerned with pouring HIS heart out in massive battles against either huge armies or huge enemies or both than dealing with the spiritual issues that were in Tolkien's heart. Decisions, how and why they are made, and how the motivation (rather than actual physical capabilities) influences the outcome. Yet Jackson CHANGED the motivation for Frodo to go to Mordor alone, transforming it from one made out of private conviction to one made on the basis of outside influence. That is a darn fundamental change, given Tolkien's intentions. Likewise, talking about "genocide" in the additional material on the Fellowship CD and including phrases like "For the race of man, there will be no tomorrow", Jackson is transforming evil in the world from a spiritual threat (the enslavement of free will) to a physical one (death) which makes no sense whatsoever given the parameters established by Tolkien (death is the gift of Illuvatar to man and removes the spirit from any worldly control whatsoever) The f*cking laws of nature are entirely different in Jackson's world compared to Tolkien's. It takes more to have characters with the same name running around at the same places, quoting the same or similar lines to bring a book to screen faithfully.

  • Jan. 2, 2004, 9:48 a.m. CST

    Whatever

    by GilGaladriel

    HI,everybody!!Just kidding.I read all articles and debates about ROTK and I'm very dissappointed by your reactions.See,I'm writing from Belgrade,Serbia.I'm also 15 years old and I'm a Tolkien fanatic.What bothers me,however,is the fact that some of you don't like the film because:1.There's too much hype about it 2.It's not true to the book 1.OF COURSE THERE WILL BE THE HYPE!!!IT'S THE BEST FREAKIN' BOOK OF THE CENTURY!!!It's the best freakin' film of all times!!! Or,what,are you going to tell me you're looking forward to the next "Charlie's Angels",or "Tomb Raider",huh??? 2.NO big phrases here.No epic speeches and definitely no physics.There was no physics back in the Third Age,y'know????All I want you to do id to remember one simple thing:THE MOVIE IS NOT THE BOOK.It's as simple as that.I see many clever people here that wrote some genuinely good stuff about the movie and that's great.But I also see many freaks that want to prove them wrong.Why???Because you hadn't F*cked anything in past couple of years???Because you're a fatass who only sits in his chair and hide himself from the world???or because you're simply degraded???If you're in the third group,I can say I'm very sorry for you,but,hey,I'm very sorry for all this stupid bitches in Belgrade,too,y'know???The only thing i WANTED TO SAY IS THAT THE MOVIE IS NOT THE BOOK,and you should know that.Film is a COMPLETELY different medium from the book.JUst because it's not completely true to the book,doesn't mean it's not the best movie of all time???/Book is the best,we all know that.But the movie is the best,too.Of course it has flaws,there is no such thing as the flawless movie,but we all have flaws,too.And,yet,we ARE perfect.To be perfect does not mean to be flawless.Just to be completely satisfied with yourself.And the movie is great.Sure,it doesn't provide us with as much feelings and situations as the book (not nearly),but the feelings it provides us with are DEFINITELY much more intense.It is the very meaning of every movie,to provide us with visuals that the book can't.Don't ask me to compare the book with the movie,because it's impossible,as I already said.You all know that PJ dedicated (as well as everybody else in the cast)his entire life to make this movie.This movie is only his interpretation,but it is a great interpretation.It provides a viewer with everything.I mean,you guys sometimes tend to act reckless.Te movie can't last for five hours,y'know???See the eXtended DVD for everything you've missed during the movies.It's all there.And,yeah,one more thing,Leggy is superb.The action Mumakil scene is just a proof of his elf-power and a viewer-amuser.Percieve this that way.And some of you said that the movie is too "clean".It isn't.At all.I mean,some people (in Serbia,too,of course) complain about the movie,about the fact that also children watch it.But,let me ask you,you were all children when you read the books,right???These children will grow up to be Tolkien fans one day,y'know???That is the whole point of the movie.To provide people with all information they need about the books they will all soon read.Us too.And just one more thing-in this mont's Empire issue, there was an interview with Viggo,and they asked him why does he think that the movie is so successfull???You know what he responded???"Because it's a true story."Think about that.

  • Jan. 2, 2004, 12:17 p.m. CST

    YOu must be one of those idiots

    by GilGaladriel

    Oh,you must be in one of my three categories-You're either a 300 pound couch potato who loves cheesy degraded movies(or are you in love with Tobey Gayguire?)or a stupid redneck who never slept with anything,not to mention anyBODY,and maybe you're just stupid.Or,perhaps,you fit in more than one category???

  • Jan. 3, 2004, 9:13 a.m. CST

    Shame, shame, shame!

    by snot nose mcgraw

    Nerds, all of you! Stop bitching about the finer points of feminist content in ROTK and get out to the cinema. Even though LOTR was indeed a decade defining trilogy, many other great films have fallen by the wayside, so get out there and find something new to bitch about. P.S Cheers to all the Aussies who supported great films like 'Japanese Story' and 'Gettin' Square'. Maybe the obviously stupid industry execs will realise that our industry's really in the shitter and start producing more quality films.

  • You still hear German Hobbit accents? Half my family are German and I can't find any trace. And Frodo's accent still sounds English to this Englishman. And yet again 'The eagles just have to fly Sam and Frodo above the clouds to Mount Doom'. Simple really, all they need are heated flight suits to keep them warm and safe from the pressure drop, and oxygen masks so they don't suffocate and die in the thin atmosphere, and hey presto.

  • Jan. 4, 2004, 4:02 p.m. CST

    Oh dear, my nameisnobody, look what I found:

    by raw_bean

    ""The Flashlight" cracks me up...his nonsensical diatribe is hilarious. If only if hebetudinous individuals such as "The Flashlight" could actually provide constructive criticism and/or retorts...and not babblings of a fanatically obsessed Tolkie that exudes of puerility. ". 'Exudes of puerility'? Isn't it funny when the barely literate try to use big words! What was it, mynameisnobody, Dictionary.com? It's a shame it couldn't help you with your grammar.

  • Jan. 5, 2004, 2:22 p.m. CST

    I wonder if mninobody is really a new poster or just a new name

    by minderbinder

    Same old whines. Blaming PJ for problems that are in the original, typical Phillipa/Fran bashing...can't you come up with ANYTHING new? Really.

  • Feb. 12, 2004, 12:44 p.m. CST

    Hose Test (now crawling on his hands and knees praying for it to

    by Skyway Moaters

    SCREW the incantation!