Garfield Recap

Jamie

Garfield is living it up with his owner Jon, eating lasagna and hating mondays. When Jon unexpectedly comes home with a new dog, Odie, Garfield is none too happy and aims to get rid of him. This ultimately leads to Odie going missing and falling into the clutches of the evil Happy Chapman. Can Garfield get Odie back before it’s too late? Find out in… Garfield: The Movie.

How?! Garfield and Jon are best friends even though Garfield is always making snide comments about what a loser Jon is. In another trip to the vet designed on wooing Jon’s crush, Liz, he misinterprets what he thinks is a request for a date and mistakenly adopts a dog, Odie. Oh no! Jon once again shows that he is a loving, caring owner of animals and seamlessly integrates Odie into his family, but Garfield is less than thrilled. He pushes Odie, smacks Odie, and embarrasses him in a dance-off in order to show dominance. This of course only leads to Odie winning a big dog show when he dances his little heart out to Hey Mama by the Black Eyed Peas (obviously). A judge at the show, the evil Happy Chapman, wants to use Odie to spring to fame, but Jon is having none of it. Soon thereafter though Garfield tricks Odie into running away and Happy is able to get his clutches on him as a result. Garfield kind of realizes that he was an asshole and goes to rescue Odie in Anonymous City. In a thrilling climax Garfield is able to stop Happy from taking Odie on a train to NYC and they all dance together as one big family. THE END.

Why?! I actually admire Garfield for keeping this story simple (and at a slim 80 minutes). No Garfield isn’t discovered by a Hollywood agent and whisked off to the fast-living ways of LA. No he doesn’t have to foil some jewel thieves trying to steal a diamond he accidentally ate. He just doesn’t like Odie (classic) and wants to get rid of him. When he succeeds at this, though, he realizes that what he did wasn’t right and aims to correct it.

What?! There are piles and piles of product placements in this film. The biggest is pretty easily Petco, which is the only one that plays a role in the pot. Not only does Jon come home loaded to the gills with solid Petco products when he adopts Odie, but the big dog show is also sponsored by the company. God there are so many more, though. A true smorgasbord.

Who?! Secret Twin Film! Yay! It doesn’t happen often, but occasionally we rack another one up for the good guys. Or I guess in this case the bad guys since the twins in question are the evil Happy Chapman and his news broadcaster twin brother. Also have to point out that if we had never seen Be Cool, where the Black Eyed Peas give a performance as part of the plot of the film, we would definitely have used this film to get Apl.de.ap for the map. All the members of the Black Eyed Peas are seen on TV showing a music video for Hey Mama. Fantastic.

Where?! Normally I would just say that this takes place in a purposefully unidentified Midwestern city that is likely a stand in for Indiana (given the origins of the comic), give it a D- for at least specifying the Midwest during a news broadcast and leave it at that. However, I do have to note that Wikipedia and many other places online seem to insist that this film takes place in LA. While it was obviously filmed in LA (duh), it very clearly states in the film that this is set in the Midwest. Two very different things. I just don’t know how such slanderous lies start on the internet.

When?! Ha, you think they’re going to specify a date in a film that goes out of its way not to identify where it takes place. No way. This is an F and I dare anyone to try to prove me wrong… seriously, if anyone else wants to close-watch Garfield and find when it takes place that would be helpful.

This movie is actually pretty much as good as one can expect from such a film. Sure it has dancing animals and lame product placement, but it’s also only 80 minutes long and stays pretty true to the snark of Garfield as a character. I could imagine having to go see this with my child and actually coming out not minding it all that much. While it is similarly derivative to Marmaduke, it more or less doesn’t fall into many of the same trappings that that film did. I give it a hardy “meh.” Patrick?

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! Garfield is a big old fat cat and Jon Arbuckle is his anti-body shaming owner. Will Jon get the lady? Will Garfield eat some lasagna? Will Stephen Tobolowsky’s eeeeeeevil plan to make Odie famous get foiled? I mean … yeah, we watched a kids’ film. Let’s get into it!

The Good – When they say a kids’ film is innocuous the movie they have in mind is Garfield. They introduce the character in his element, they focus the movie on Odie’s origin story (which fans have been clamoring for for years …) and really don’t venture out of Garfield’s Midwestern box. Good move. The actors are all game, and shockingly Garfield’s CGI looked fine most of the time IMO. It looks terrible when he dances obviously, but when he’s walking around he looks surprisingly good compared to what I expected.

Ps View on the Preview – In the preview I couldn’t help myself in wondering why Murray was even in the film. Sure, Lorenzo Music is dead and sounds a lot like Murray, but replacing voice actors is a somewhat trivial thing and it was still somewhat of a wonder that they decided they needed a big name when the Garfield character already had a distinct voice. But … I think Murray brought a lot to the role. His warmth, charm, humor whatever you want to call it, something about it worked really well. This ain’t a Owen Wilson in Marmaduke situation.

The Bad – I kind of still wish they had downgraded Garfield’s voice and upgraded Meyer, who is probably a weaker part of the film. The story is just on the cusp of being too light. Any and all dancing sequences are just awful and they are almost relentless, the entire story concerning Odie involves the animals dancing. I don’t really have other complaints about the film. Even the B story (Jon in love with the vet) is straight from the comics, and Tobolowsky’s eeeeevil twin (twin film!) is just low-level enough to work as an antagonist to a literal cat.

Get Yo Rant On – To be frank I don’t really think I have a rant this week. This film doesn’t really have one. I’ll just quickly note here that this franchise is probably one of the last good examples of the cartoon character thing where you can tell they have strings pulling boxes, or blankets around, and Breckin Meyer has to pretend to pet Garfield and stuff. It looks real bad. Like you can kind of see the seams of the film. If you watch something like Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone you can see it too (BTW not a very good film, kind of weirdly old fashioned for the time it was made).

The BMT – Nope, but mainly because the film is too good. The 15% on Rotten Tomatoes must reflect the times more than anything else, because it is shockingly low. It’ll go hand in hand with the sequel, which is a kind of logical conclusion to the fish-out-of-water comic strip adaptation, but the first one I think can merely be thought of as better than one would expect.

Welcome to Earf – Jennifer Love Hewitt was in Garfield and I Know What You Did Last Summer with Freddie Prinze Jr. who was in Wing Commander with Matthew Lillard who was in In The Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale with Leelee Sobieski who was in Here on Earth! Welcome to Earf!

StreetCreditReport.com – Probably the most cred you can find for the film comes from the anecdote about Bill Murray not realizing it wasn’t a Joel Coen film (it is a Joel Cohen film). Otherwise it usually gets on lists concerning movies based on cartoons, or bad CGI. But I stand by my point: at times Garfield looks surprisingly good all things considered, it only kind of looks bad when you reflect back on it or freeze the film.

We’ll save the A Talking Cat!?! chat for the sequels’ recap.

Cheerios,

The Sklogs

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Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties Preview

Jamie awakens to find himself hanging by his feet in the rafters of the old mansion. “I know it’s a shock being a vampire and all,” says a voice. Turning to his side Jamie sees a young vampire smiling back at him. “But don’t worry. The name’s Odin and I’ll help you learn all the coolz vampire rulez at Dracula School.”  Jamie does love rules, but he also knows that the librarian could be back at any moment to squeeze his twinzo powers out of him. “I’ll pass bro,” he says, pausing momentarily to turn his hat backwards, “I gotta find my brother, Patrick.” “Well maybe I can help you,” Odin replies, “you see we’re both Larbagios, those are vampires made by other vampires. We are mortal enemies of Hedgermias, those are vampires who made themselves vampires. There are also Royeldrums, those are vampires that were always vampires. We all fight and can never love unless bound by the Oaths of Keldronia, for otherwise our blood lust will overtake us and we will become Hedgermias. Thus we must be pure and remember that the flesh is sacred…” Rolling his eyes Jamie interjects, “Wish I could stay but look at the time…” As he turns to leave Odin suddenly transforms before his eyes into a large dog. “I didn’t get to the useful part yet,” the large dog says, “Larbagios can also transform into animals.” Oooo, that is helpful. With such a power Jamie will be able to sneak right by that librarian and start figuring out where Patrick is. Concentrating real hard he feel himself transform. Looking down he sees a mass of orange hair and black stripes. Great, a big ol’ fat orange cat. Not super inconspicuous, but it’ll have to do. That’s right! We’re (finally) watching Garfield and Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties.

Patrick is mesmerized by the terrible teenage witch rap dance, unaware of time slipping away from him. Days pass, his lips cracked with dehydration, his mind lost in the glorious inanity he is viewing, his body dying. All of a sudden the door explodes, splinters showering Patrick and awakening him from his daze, bullets zip and crack, raining down on all manner of teenage witch and wizard. “LAPD! You have the right to remain dead,” a grizzled officer growls. Another officer, dressed in overalls with no shirt, shakes his head, “Gosh dern it Sticks, this was supposed to be an easy in and out job, just grab the kid and let’s get outta here!” The grizzled officer grabs Patrick roughly. “You’re welcome punk, Stones and I just saved your mind.” They drag Patrick through the front door and … onto another set? This one is dressed up as an alleyway. They drop Patrick into a pile of garbage, Sticks and Stones look at each other and nod, “Light’er up” says Stones. As they gleefully firebomb the witch’s house set, black doll eyes gleaming, Patrick’s mind begins to clear. Just then an alley cat walks by. “You don’t belong here” the cat says with a wink, and walks off. Wait … A talking cat!?! What is this place? That’s right! We’re also watching A Talking Cat!?!!

We move forward in the Bring A Friend cycle to watch two films that involve talking cats. That’s because Garfield is in fact a talking cat!?! We used to avoid films like Garfield (and the BONUS Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties) thinking they were “just for kids” and not worth our time. We eventually realized that that was patronizing and decided to give them a chance… and they turned out to mostly be not worth our time. But sometimes they can be fun. Here’s to hoping! As for A Talking Cat!?! It’s is a film!?! The verdict is still out. It certainly exists and it will play in front of our eyeballs, but it’s hard to say how or why this film(!?!) has become something of a cult classic. Even leading to a podcast A Talking Cast!?! Which broke down the film minute-by-minute. Jesus. What a week. Let’s go!

Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties (2006) – BMeTric: 61.8

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(It is pretty shocking to see how close these two movies are in both IMDb rating (5.0 now) and in Rotten Tomatoes score (15% and 11%). Just more of the same I guess … but in England or whatever.)

Leonard Maltin – 2.5 stars –  While tagging along with Meyer on a trip to London, Garfield is mistaken for a look-alike cat who’s come into a big inheritance. Minor but amusing. Alternate version runs 86m. Advertised as Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties.

(What a short review. And basically reads, again, as: innocuous but secretly boring but also blessedly short. Which I guess i’m down with …)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLTnQko_Lz4

(Oh God. This looks terrible. Why would they do this? The original was so charming in how … local they kept it! Keep Garfield in … Indiana or wherever he lives.)

Directors – Tim Hill – (Known For: Muppets from Space; Future BMT: Alvin and the Chipmunks; Hop; Max Keeble’s Big Move; BMT: Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties; Notes: Developed Spongebob Squarepants, and turned to directing on shows like KaBlam! Amazingly it seems like he got the Muppets from Space as his first major directorial job. Seems like a big get.)

Writers – Joel Cohen and Alec Sokolow (written by) – (Known For: Toy Story; Future BMT: Daddy Day Camp; Evan Almighty; Money Talks; Goodbye Lover; BMT: Garfield; Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties; Cheaper by the Dozen; Notes: Apparently they are working a project with Jamie Foxx and David Bautista called Groove Tails involving mice in a competitive dance competition … or something.)

Jim Davis (comic strip “Garfield”) – (BMT: Garfield; Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties; Notes: Has an organization employing over 50 artists that work on the Garfield brand in general, managing its image and overall finances. He is currently an adjunct professor in Indiana.)

Actors – Breckin Meyer – (Known For: Clueless; The Craft; Road Trip; Can’t Hardly Wait; Rat Race; The Insider; Escape from L.A.; Go; Herbie Fully Loaded; Josie and the Pussycats; Kate & Leopold; Prefontaine; Dancer, Texas Pop. 81; Blue State; Future BMT: Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare; Rebound; 54; Caffeine; Touch; Tail Lights Fade; BMT: Garfield; Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties; Pinocchio; Ghosts of Girlfriends Past; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Actor for Pinocchio in 2003; Notes: Has been doing some television recently. Particularly Designated Survivor and is slated to star in The Fix on ABC it looks like.)

Jennifer Love Hewitt – (Known For: Tropic Thunder; Can’t Hardly Wait; Heartbreakers; Future BMT: Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit; Delgo; The Suburbans; The Truth About Love; House Arrest; Jewtopia; Telling You; BMT: I Still Know What You Did Last Summer; Garfield; Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties; The Tuxedo; I Know What You Did Last Summer; Notes: Just posted a flashback to some red carpet moments of her posing with her ex Carson Daly. Married to her The Client List co-star Brian Hallisay.)

Billy Connolly – (Known For: The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies; Brave; Pocahontas; The Last Samurai; A Series of Unfortunate Events; Open Season; What We Did on Our Holiday; White Oleander; Muppet Treasure Island; Mrs Brown; Fido; Still Crazy; Quartet; The Return of the Musketeers; The Man Who Sued God; The Impostors; Beautiful Joe; An Everlasting Piece; Future BMT: Gulliver’s Travels; Beverly Hills Ninja; Indecent Proposal; The X Files: I Want to Believe; The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day; Wild Oats; Who Is Cletis Tout?; BMT: Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties; Timeline; Notes: Scottish singer turned comedian. Was a vocal opponent of Scottish independence in 2014.)

Budget/Gross – $60 million / Domestic: $28,426,747 (Worldwide: $141,702,264)

(This is a little closer to not being worth it, but probably still profitable. Still, the trajectory suggests a severe budget cut would be needed to make a third, plus I don’t think Murray was game at that point, this was only the second sequel he had ever done after all.)

#49 for the CGI Star genre

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(This hits right before things really took off. I was actually pretty impressed with the CGI of Garfield in the previews I watched, which was surprising. Marmaduke was, as a more recent example, an actual dog which was just modified via CGI.)

#31 for the Family – Talking Animal (Live action) genre

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(Marmaduke is number 29 on this list, so it hits right there as one would expect. I have a feeling I will still like this more than Marmaduke, although I guess both buy in heavily to the Cartoon Fish out of Water.)

#27 for the TV Cartoon (Live Action) genre

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(While the original was a little ahead of the peak for the genre, this guy hit right before I really got saturated. The weirdest film we’ve seen on this list I think is Aeon Flux.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 11% (8/74): Strictly for (very) little kids, A Tale of Two Kitties features skilled voice actors but a plot that holds little interest.

(Oooooof. Very little kids. I guess the original seemed like it was just for kids as well so … makes sense? Reviewer Highlight: The best thing that can be said about Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties is that the movie isn’t quite as bad as its name. – Peter Hartlaub, San Francisco Chronicle)

Poster – Talking Animals 2: Destination: London (C+)

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(Both the first and second film seem to buy into the mostly white, very simplistic style that I generally don’t like. Still love the font and nice symmetry. But overall just meh.)

Tagline(s) – Too much of a good thing is even better. (C-)

(Technically there isn’t a tagline on the poster, but I liked this extra one enough to include it. It’s just such a weird play on a common phrase. So innocuous and not connected to the film in any way. As generic of a sequel tagline as you could make.)

Keyword(s) – cat; Top Ten by BMeTric: 94.7 Catwoman (2004); 92.4 Date Movie (2006); 88.9 Vampires Suck (2010); 86.2 The Cat in the Hat (2003); 84.4 Movie 43 (2013); 82.5 Inspector Gadget (1999); 82.5 Home Alone 3 (1997); 81.8 I Know Who Killed Me (2007); 80.4 One Missed Call (2008); 78.4 Nutty Professor II: The Klumps (2000);

(Date Movie doesn’t reeeeeally seem like a cat film, which is too bad. The keywords from IMDb really are the worst.)

Notes – Garfield is one of two characters who have been portrayed by both Bill Murray and the late Lorenzo Music. The other is Dr. Peter Venkman of the “Ghostbusters” series. (It is kind of silly they didn’t just get a voice actor to to this … why do you need a big name to voice Garfield again? Considering they already had a very distinctive voice for Garfield, just get somehow who can to a passable job.)

Billy Connolly admitted in an interview that when he was offered the role of Lord Dargis in this sequel, he wasn’t aware that the first Garfield (2004) movie existed. (ha)

Castle Carlyle is really Castle Howard in North Yorkshire. Brideshead Revisited (1981) was filmed at the same castle. (Yiiiiis, these are the fun facts I come for)

Along with Ghostbusters II, this is only the second sequel of one of his movies, Bill Murray has appeared in. (WHY)

Tim Curry the voice of Prince and Bill Murray the voice of Garfield were both originally considered to star in Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988) as Eddie Valiant and Judge Doom. But they both got replaced by Bob Hoskins and Christopher Lloyd. (Good choice. What a classic)

Roger Ebert’s review of this movie was written in first person as Garfield. (Alright … oh wow it is a horror show)

Awards – Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Prequel or Sequel (2007)

Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Excuse for Family Entertainment (2007)

The Cannonball Run Preview

NOTE: This is a BONUS BMT this week in preparation for Cannonball Run II. To read up on the continued adventures of the Bad Movie Twins see the Cannonball Run II preview.

The Cannonball Run (1981) – BMeTric: 24.4

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(It is kind of amazing that there was only five thousand votes for a 1981 smash hit film in 2004 or whatever. Very consistent BMeTric, so basically it is rising just one might expect for a crap film slowly gaining votes over time.)

Leonard Maltin – BOMB –  Just what civilization needs – more Reynolds car-chase silliness, inspired by the same cross-country road race depicted in The Gumball Rally and Cannonball. Pretty unendurable, despite unusual cast; rumor has it that the one responsible for casting Dino and Sammy as priests is still doing his Hail Marys. Followed by a sequel.

(Hell yeah this was followed by a sequel. I’m quite shocked this is supposed to be so bad. I had it pegged as a not-funny but very successful minor comedy of the 80s more famous for spawning an infamous sequel than anything else. And it seems that actually both are reviled for mostly the same reasons.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j2hGFN8NlLQ

(Oh shit they put the fox cartoon at the front of the trailer! Jeez lousie! Farrah Fawcett is looking … a little cold in the early part of that trailer. Terrible trailer, primarily because it muddles the entire plot of the film in my opinion. You obviously can’t fly … like, any transcontinental flight would have crushed those goobers. Just nonsense. Crazy cast, and I’m actually rather surprised that Jackie Chan gets a shout out in the trailer (although this is likely a home video trailer, not theatrical, so it could have been after he was already famous))

Directors – Hal Needham – (Known For: Smokey and the Bandit; Hooper; Future BMT: Smokey and the Bandit Ride Again; Megaforce; Stroker Ace; Cactus Jack; BMT: Cannonball Run II; The Cannonball Run; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Director in 1983 for Megaforce; in 1984 for Stroker Ace; and in 1985 for Cannonball Run II; and Nominee for Worst Screenplay for Cannonball Run II in 1985; Notes: Was primarily a stuntman and is well known for training a new generation of stuntmen and pushing for recognition for their work in film. There is a sad tale to the film though.)

Writers – Brock Yates (written by) – (Future BMT: Smokey and the Bandit Ride Again; BMT: Cannonball Run II; The Cannonball Run; Notes: The creator of the actual Cannon Ball Baker Sea-To-Shining-Sea Memorial Trophy Dash. The ambulance in the film was the actual car he drove in the first race.)

Actors – Burt Reynolds – (Known For: Boogie Nights; Deliverance; Smokey and the Bandit; Bean; Dog Years; The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas; All Dogs Go to Heaven; The Player; The Mean Machine; Hooper; Sharky’s Machine; Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex * But Were Afraid to Ask; White Lightning; Silent Movie; The End; Semi-Tough; Citizen Ruth; Hustle; Best Friends; Switching Channels; Future BMT: The Dukes of Hazzard; Smokey and the Bandit Part 3; Cop & ½; Smokey and the Bandit Ride Again; Delgo; Without a Paddle; City Heat; Stroker Ace; Hotel; Deal; Meet Wally Sparks; The Crew; Rent-a-Cop; The Man Who Loved Women; The Longest Yard; Gator; Physical Evidence; Malone; At Long Last Love; Heat; Stick; Mystery, Alaska; BMT: In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale; Striptease; Driven; Cannonball Run II; The Cannonball Run; Trigger Happy; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Actor for Cop & ½ in 1994; Winner for Worst Screen Couple for Striptease in 1997; Nominee for Worst Actor in 1985 for Cannonball Run II, and City Heat; and in 1989 for Rent-a-Cop, and Switching Channels; Nominee for Worst Supporting Actor in 1997 for Striptease; in 2002 for Driven; in 2006 for The Dukes of Hazzard, and The Longest Yard; and in 2009 for Deal, and In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale; and Nominee for Worst Screen Couple for Driven in 2002; Notes: Y’all know Burt Reynolds. Rolling Stone recently called him the last Good Ol’ Boy Movie Star.)

Roger Moore – (Known For: Live and Let Die; Moonraker; For Your Eyes Only; The Spy Who Loved Me; Octopussy; The Man with the Golden Gun; The Wild Geese; The Last Time I Saw Paris; Shout at the Devil; Future BMT: Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore; Boat Trip; Curse of the Pink Panther; The Quest; The Saint; A View to a Kill; North Sea Hijack; BMT: Spice World; The Cannonball Run; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Supporting Actor for Spice World in 1999; Notes: James Bond times seven. A possibly-BMT film The Spy Who Dumped Me comes out this week, an obvious reference to one of his classic works listed above. Interesting that only one of his seven films qualifies … some of them are truly dire.)

Farrah Fawcett – (Known For: Logan’s Run; Dr. T & the Women; The Apostle; Extremities; See You in the Morning; Future BMT: Man of the House; Saturn 3; The Cookout; Myra Breckinridge; BMT: The Cannonball Run; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Actress for Saturn 3 in 1981; and Nominee for Worst Supporting Actress for The Cannonball Run in 1982; Notes: Was married to Lee Majors and appears on television with him on numerous occasions in the 70s. Broke out as a star with Charlie’s Angels in the late 70s.)

Budget/Gross – $16–18 million / Domestic: $72,179,579

(Huge. Top ten film of the year and obviously made a ton. Amazing to be able to make a film with that many stars, that many stunts, and across the US for that little I feel like. What a steal.)

#14 for the Car Racing genre

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(This genre all but died in the 90s although I can’t tell you why (tastes change perhaps, much like the slashed went into a slumber in the 90s?). It is now booming with the Fast and the Furious franchise, which coincidentally are the highest grossing BMT films we’ve see from this genre.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 29% (9/31): No consensus yet.

(The consensus is essentially: They made a terrible bad film, escapism in its purest form … which in a way I guess is fine given it made boatloads of cash. Reviewer Highlight: The Cannonball Run is an abdication of artistic responsibility at the lowest possible level of ambition. – Roger Ebert)

Poster – The No Rulez Race (B-)

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(If you look ahead to the Cannonball Run II tagline and poster it’s a bit of a surprise that they did so much better with both those things the second time around. Perhaps they had a little less shame and just went for it when they got to the sequel. This all looks a little restrained, but still artistic.)

Tagline(s) – You’ll root for them all…but you’ll never guess who wins. (D)

(Blah. I actually straight up don’t like this one. Boring. Check out Cannonball Run II for one of the all-time classic taglines. This could not and does not match up.)

Keyword(s) – competition; Top Ten by BMeTric: 95.9 Meet the Spartans (2008); 83.5 Rollerball (2002); 81.9 You Got Served (2004); 77.6 The Starving Games (2013); 75.0 Daddy Day Camp (2007); 72.8 Driven (2001); 69.7 Recep Ivedik 4 (2014); 68.9 DOA: Dead or Alive (2006); 68.8 Herbie Fully Loaded (2005); 55.9 Snow Dogs (2002);

(I want to get served so badly. All of these are pretty great, we’ll sweep these up easily over the next few years I imagine.)

Notes – Jackie Chan makes one of his first U.S. film appearance. Inspired by Hal Needham’s notion of including bloopers during the closing credits, Chan began a tradition of doing the same in most of his movies, from this point onward.

The movie was originally planned as an action film starring Steve McQueen. After McQueen’s death, the lead went to Burt Reynolds, and the film became a comedy. (Oh … uh, that’s too bad, on both counts)

The ambulance used in the movie, is the actual ambulance that Hal Needham and Brock Yates souped up and raced in the real Cannonball Run. It had been modified with a HEMI engine, that made it go up to one hundred forty-five miles per hour (two hundred thirty-three kilometers per hour), and was equipped with four gas filler holes, so that the required ninety gallons (three hundred forty-one liters) could be pumped quickly. Needham and Yates didn’t win the race (the transmission blew in Palm Springs, California) so Needham kept it in storage for several years, until the time came to make this film. After the movie, he gave it to a church charity, which raised a good deal of money auctioning it off. (That is amazing)

Burt Reynolds became the highest paid actor in cinema history up to that point, for this movie, making five million dollars for four weeks work. (Good for him! Good for him!)

The producers asked the Governor of Georgia, if the crew could shut down the center of a small town, so that a plane could land in the middle of it. The police blocked off the section, in which the plane was to land, and a barrier can be seen in the background. (I mean … yeah you can, it is super amateurish)

To get material for this movie, Brock Yates ran the final Cannonball in 1979. The move cost him his editorial position at Car and Driver Magazine, which has since been reinstated. (Oh wow … that is crazy)

Legendary odds-maker Jimmy the Greek had a cameo in this movie, where he did a scene with Dean Martin and Sammy Davis, Jr. Jimmy and Dean grew up in Steubenville, Ohio, and were friends since childhood.

The short sequence in the beginning of the film, which involved two animated cars wrecking the 20th Century Fox logo, was created by Hal Needham, who did a similar one for another studio when releasing Smokey and the Bandit (1977). At first, Fox didn’t appreciate the notion of wrecking their logo, but soon found it would be appealing to audiences if it were left in.

Hal Needham and Producer Albert S. Ruddy liked the chemistry of Terry Bradshaw and Mel Tillis so much, that after this film, they tried to sell a pilot to ABC featuring their characters. The head of the network loved the idea, but the day before the meeting was to be held to discuss it, the head of the network was fired, and the project was cancelled. (NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO)

Burt Reynolds said of the film, “I did that film for all the wrong reasons. I never liked it. I did it to help out a friend of mine, Hal Needham, and I also felt it was immoral to turn down that kind of money. I suppose I sold out, so I couldn’t really object to what people wrote about me.” (Good on you Burt. Good on you)

In one of the earlier scenes in the movie, J.J. McClure (Burt Reynolds) said “Could get a black Trans Am”, and then answers himself, “Naw, that’s been done.” This is a reference to Smokey and the Bandit (1977) and Smokey and the Bandit II (1980), which starred Reynolds, and were directed by Hal Needham, who directed this film. DeLuise co-starred with Reynolds in Smokey and the Bandit Ride Again (1980). (I hate this kind of stuff, but for such a light hearted comedy it makes sense)

Vehicles used in the film: J.J. and Victor are driving a 1978 Dodge Sportsman. Seymour is driving a 1964 Aston Martin DB5. Blake and Fenderbaum are driving a 1977 Ferrari 308 GTS. Terry and Mel are driving a 1976 Chevrolet Chevelle Laguna. Marcie and Jill are driving a 1980 Lamborghini Countach LP 400S. The Japanese team is driving a 1980 Subaru DL. The Sheik is driving a 1976 Rolls-Royce Shadow 1. Mad Dog and Batman are driving a 1980 GMC C-35 Pickup. Brad and Shakey are driving a Harley-Davidson Sportster. When Mr. Foyt shows up at the hotel, he’s driving a 1972 Volvo 142. At the opening, Victor is driving a 1973 Honda Civic. The plane that J.J. and Victor are flying is a Maule M 5-235 Lunar Rocket. During the first appearance of Captain Chaos, he and J.J. are driving a 1969 Porsche 911. (I love it)

The moustache worn by Burt Reynolds in this movie was subsequently auctioned for the charity, UNICEF. The auction was held in Geneva, Switzerland, and the winning bid was twenty-five thousand dollars. The identity of the winning bidder was kept secret for many years. In an interview in 2012, the guitarist of the British rock band Queen, Brian May, revealed the winning bidder was Freddie Mercury, lead singer of Queen. (So it was a fake mustache … or did they like … shave it off and put it on some tape or something)

NOTE: There was a note about this incident here, which I’ve replaced with a link to this article instead. (Super sad. Two years later the disaster on the set of Twilight Zone: The Movie would happen. And while still much safer, accidents like what happened on one of the recent Transformers films, still happen)

The names of the characters of Jill and Marcy are never mentioned in this film. In Cannonball Run II (1984), both actresses were replaced, and were called Jill and Marcy, which has been a matter of debate for many years, as to if Jill and Marcy from Cannonball Run II (1984) are even supposed to be the same characters from this movie, or if it’s just to give the original two characters a name for crediting on movie media sites. (They are the same characters. It would be ludicrous if that weren’t the case)

Awards – Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Supporting Actress (Farrah Fawcett, 1982)

Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid Recap

Jamie

When a company discovers that a rare flower is the key to eternal life they send a group of scientists to find it. They hire a boat to go into a remote region of Papua New Guinea but soon find themselves trying to escape a large number of giant anacondas. Will they get out before it’s too late? Find out in… Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid.

How?! A bunch of scientists are totes excited about a chemical they’ve discovered in a flower called the blood orchid that will greatly extend life. Unfortunately this flower only blooms once every seven years or some shit and only in a remote area in Borneo. They head on out there, hire a boat, and then wonder whether they’ve heard this story before because it sure is ringing some bells. Anyway, they are sailing smoothly along until flooding looks like it is too bad to continue. “No way!” says a definitely-not-evil scientist and offers the captain some more money to continue on. This is a mistake as they immediately go over a waterfall. With their boat trashed they have only one option: trek through the jungle to try to find help. This is also a mistake as they begin to be eaten by giant anacondas… which makes no sense but whatever. Eventually they find their way to a village that has been ravaged by anacondas and they use the remnants of the huts to build a raft. However, the evvvviiiilll scientist is like “No way!” and kills one of the crew and steals the raft. Once again the only recourse is to trek through the jungle to steal the raft back and once again this is a mistake as several more people are eaten by anacondas. Finally they corner the evvviiiillll scientist in the blood orchid garden who falls like a dumbo into a writhing mating ball of anacondas (their words, not mine). They then blow up all those snakes and jet away on their raft. THE END.

Why? MacGuffin. baby! They just want that sweet, sweet blood orchid to make bank on a drug that extends life. Interestingly, unlike the first anaconda film they also provide a reason that the snakes are so huge. Since the blood orchid extends life and anacondas continue to grow bigger over time they are huge because they feed on the orchid. Unfortunately they never explain how anacondas are in Indonesia. It really seems like they wrote a random python movie and then were like “yo, wait. You remember that smash hit that came out seven years ago? What if…”

What?! A+ MacGuffin here as it even appears in the title of the film! The Blood Orchid is so classic that you could use it as a joke to exemplify a terrible and hilarious title to a film. Like Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo. Or actually the recent Speed 2: Cruise Control. We are kind of on a subtitle roll at the moment.

Who?! Despite a rather large animal part in this film for a monkey named Kong, we unfortunately didn’t get a credit for Kong himself. We did get a credit for a monkey trainer named Tim Williams. He trained animals on the BMT films Cradle 2 the Grave, Failure to Launch, Transformers, and Zookeeper (an underrated classic). Training that gorilla to sing Apple Bottom Jeans must have been really hard.

Where?! It is very clearly set in Borneo… they say it a whole bunch. We also get a map that places it clearly in the Indonesian area of the island. Just a great great great mapl.de.map location. Although it makes no sense as anacondas are not indigenous to Indonesia. Or even anywhere outside of the Americas. Really this should have been giant reticulated pythons (already the largest snakes in the world). B+.

When?! There is nothing more I could have wished for than for this to be a secret holiday film. Like they’re floating up the river and one of the doctors remarks that he can’t believe he’s spending Christmas in Borneo. As it is, the best we get is one of the technologists saying that he’s missing a Knicks game so October to April (I’m not including playoffs since it’s the Knicks. BOOOOOOM!). F.

This fits nicely into a certain type of BMT film we stumble upon rather frequently (most recently Righteous Kill). It’s a film that by all accounts should have been a direct-to-video release, but somehow made it onto the release schedule. In this case it was probably just an opening in the schedule and they thought “what the hell, the first one did really well.” All things considered this should have just ended up on video and we shouldn’t have ever seen it. But we did… and it’s kind of boring. I will say that there is a level of insanity (especially at the end) that could be entertaining at times. The production quality just wasn’t there. Patrick?

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! Remember that film you made like … 5 years ago? No, you remember it, is had Ice Cube and a big snake or something. Wasn’t it popular? Screw it, let’s make a sequel. Let’s get into it.

The Good – I learned why you don’t watch borderline-straight-to-video sequels to films made in the mid-2000s. There is an adorable monkey in the film. They really flesh out the Anaconda mythos (joking, read the rant).

P’s View of the Preview – Generating the preview the thing that really struck me was how everyone in the film was television actors. So watching what one could put together with a television budget, cast, and (honestly) plot was going to be interesting. Oh, and of course just how Borneo the film is is always a fun settings time. This is one of those films I just never really imagined I would watch … it was shocking to realize it is nominated for a Razzie and thus an inevitable addition to BMT.

The Bad – Where to even start with this pile of garbage. The story involving magic flower anti-aging medicine is dumb. The CGI is awful. The obvious evil scientist twist is obvious. They say mating ball multiple times. They far too quickly dispatch the best character in the film, the boat named Bloody Mary … it is a surreal experience watching such a pointless film. It is hard to even put into words how very strange I found this film. How was this released to theaters and not just directly to the SyFy channel?

Get Yo Rant On – This is like the Halloween franchise problem all over again. There is no need to explain why Anacondas are big. They are big snakes. Reports (probably apocryphal) of enormous Anacondas have been reported throughout history. So why invent some magic flower as a MacGuffin which doubles as a bizarre explanation for why there are big snakes? No one cares. Why can’t Michael Myers just want to kill Laurie Strode … wait, wrong movie, one second … Why can’t I just have a big snake that likes to kill humans for sport without getting into why this snake is big? End Rant.

The BMT – This could end up being the most pointless sequel I’ve ever seen … is that a reason for being though? I guess. I can’t imagine ever recommending this film for anything. It just isn’t very fun … besides them saying “mating ball” like sixteen times … which is pretty awesome I have to admit. But no, terrible BMT film in my opinion.

Welcome to Earf – I need a little help to get started. So main badass Johnny Messner it turns out  is in The Whole Ten Yards with Natasha Henstridge who was in Ghosts of Mars with Ice Cube who was in Anaconda which we know we can get back to Here on Earth with … but for posterity, Anaconda has Owen Wilson who was in I Spy with Eddie Murphy who was in Norbit with Terry Crews who was in Blended with Adam Sandler who was in Jack and Jill with Al Pacino who was in 88 Minutes with Leelee Sobieski who was in Here on Earth. Welcome to Earf!!

StreetCreditReport.com – Nothing! Not that surprising. Who cares about the second Anaconda film? It kind of barely exists. I would have hoped it could make some worst sequel list, but not really. No hope with creature feature lists since there are a million terrible SyFy films available. How did this thing get nominated for a Razzie?

We did indeed watch both films for this installment, so the only other real homework I could have done would be the two straight-to-video sequels they made … thanks but no thanks.

Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Anacondas: Hunt for the Blood Orchid Preview

NOTE: This is a BONUS film watched in conjunction with Anaconda. I’ve reprinted The Adventures of the Bad Movie Twins installment from the preview here:

Finally Patrick and I get a chance for a little R&R while travelling to Bolivia via cruise ship. We pay no mind to the man arguing over his lost bagpipes and hit the pool like a couple of relaxed dudez. That’s weird, though, that same guy seems to have no interest in the nouveau-Scottish ska band rocking out on board. How suspicious. Suddenly the cruise ship lurches and we are told to evacuate the ship. Patrick’s spidey senses are a-tingling, though. Was that Bagpipes McGee he saw running the opposite way from the designated evacuation route? We better set him straight. When we confront him he reveals that he is in fact a maniacal eco-terrorist who hid a bunch of bombs inside his bagpipes. He’s hell bent on turning the cruise liner into a pirate war ship capable to disrupting the world’s shipping lanes that are the source of so much of our world’s pollution. Also he got bit by a whale as a child and contracted a whale-specific chronic blood condition that requires the use of diamonds to clean his blood… because there are also diamonds on the cruise ship so that’s also part of the plan. We quickly tire of his exposition so we give him a patented Twin Chop to the neck and save the day (“This was supposed to be our vacation!” we say with a sly smirk). Bagpipes McGee is taken away by the Sea Police (all rights reserved) and we continue on our way to Bolivia with the sweet dulcet tones of Reggae music pleasing our ears. “This is great!” I say to Patrick. “Yeah, super relaxing!” he says, “The only thing that could ruin this trip is if we encounter one or both of my greatest fears: snakes and rare flowers.” That’s right! We’re doing a double dose this week as we knock out both theatrical releases in the Anaconda franchise. Anaconda is a classic bad film and smash hit released in 1997. Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid was released seven years later and was neither of those things. Let’s go!

Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid (2004) – BMeTric: 69.2

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(Twenty thousand votes is absolutely astonishing. And no one hates horror films like horror fans so naturally this just does incredibly with the BMeTric.)

Leonard Maltin – 2 stars –  The original Anaconda had Jennifer Lopez tied up to Ice Cube and a snake-regurgitated Jon Voight; in this sequel, we have Chestnut getting woozy after a rare spider gives him a 151-proof bite. Still, that’s an apparent occupational hazard for anyone trekking the Borneo jungle seeking a fountain-of-youth plant right near the spot where snakes converge for mating season. There’s a jolt or two to satisfy diehards.

(Uh oh … would I be considered a die hard at this point? Maybe, I do prefer horror films with jolts rather than not, so I guess I’m a diehard. Solid semicolon work as always Leonard.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UtBq5lox-1Q

(Lol this looks like complete trash. I do kind of like the Jaws theme joke. Since all creature features are inherently knock offs of Jaws in one way or another poking fun at it is kind of funny at least.)

Directors – Dwight H. Little – (Known For: Last Rampage: The Escape of Gary Tison; Future BMT: Tekken; Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home; Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers; Marked for Death; Murder at 1600; The Phantom of the Opera; Rapid Fire; BMT: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Notes: Has been doing television almost exclusively for years including many episodes of Bones.)

Writers – Hans Bauer (1997 screenplay & story) – (Known For: Titan A.E.; Future BMT: Highwaymen; BMT: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Anaconda; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Screenplay for Anaconda in 1998; Notes: He wrote the original. Additionally, he is a photographer and has has been involved in multiple group and one-man shows in LA)

Jim Cash and Jack Epps Jr. (1997 screenplay & story) – (Known For: Top Gun; Dick Tracy; Turner & Hooch; The Secret of My Succe$s; Legal Eagles; Future BMT: The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas; BMT: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Anaconda; Razzie Notes: Nominee for Worst Screenplay for Anaconda in 1998; Notes: See the Anaconda preview for info on these guys. They only have a credit because they wrote Anaconda)

John Claflin (screenplay) – (Future BMT: Inhale; BMT: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Fool’s Gold; Notes: I can find nothing about him beyond that he worked with Zelman on an unproduced horror film called The Watch in 2004 and then they didn’t seem to work together since.)

Daniel Zelman (screenplay) – (BMT: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Fool’s Gold; Notes: Worked with Claflin until it looks like this film, since Zelman has gone on to create Damages and Bloodline in the television world.)

Michael Miner (screenplay) – (Known For: RoboCop; RoboCop (2014); Future BMT: Lawnmower Man 2: Beyond Cyberspace; BMT: RoboCop 3; Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; RoboCop 2; Notes: Claims to be a technophobe and has a second career as a large format landscape photographer.)

Edward Neumeier (screenplay) (as Ed Neumeier) – (Known For: Starship Troopers; RoboCop; RoboCop (2014); BMT: RoboCop 3; Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; RoboCop 2; Notes: He wrote the original screenplay for Starship Troopers when it was called Bug Hunt at Outpost Nine … good title change. It was not originally attached to the Starship Troopers book at all.)

Actors – Morris Chestnut – (Known For: Girls Trip; Boyz n the Hood; G.I. Jane; The Last Boy Scout; Like Mike; The Call; Think Like a Man; Higher Learning; The Best Man Holiday; Ladder 49; Confidence: After Dark; The Best Man; The Brothers; Two Can Play That Game; Scenes of the Crime; Future BMT: Half Past Dead; The Cave; Under Siege 2: Dark Territory; Identity Thief; The Perfect Holiday; When the Bough Breaks; The Perfect Guy; Breakin’ All the Rules; Heist; The Game Plan; Kick-Ass 2; Not Easily Broken; BMT: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Notes: Most famous for winning the 1998 Madden Bowl. Has recently been on television including the title role in Rosewood.)

KaDee Strickland – (Known For: The Sixth Sense; American Gangster; Girl, Interrupted; Something’s Gotta Give; The Perfect Catch; Anything Else; The Family That Preys; Diamond Men; Future BMT: The Stepford Wives; The Grudge; BMT: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Notes: Starred in over one hundred episodes of Private Practice.)

Eugene Byrd – (Known For: Sleepers; 8 Mile; Dead Man; Julia; One Point O; Easier with Practice; Went to Coney Island on a Mission from God… Be Back by Five; Future BMT: Whiteboyz; BMT: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid; Notes: Starred in Bones and was a voice in Lego Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures as well. All three of these actors are primarily television actors.)

Budget/Gross – $20–25 million / Domestic: $32,238,923 (Worldwide: $70,992,898)

(Hmmmmm. Given the stated budget it isn’t superb, but also isn’t a complete disaster.)

#40 for the Creature Feature genre

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(The Anaconda films are the eleventh and twelfth creature feature we’ve seen for BMT. I think Bats is my favorite one I’ve seen.)

#10 for the Horror – Terror in the Water genre

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(As I mentioned in the Anaconda preview this plot is just weird. I’m probably most excited to watch Deepstar Six on the list, it is an older film that is pretty notorious for being terrible.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 25% (30/118): A cheesy monster B-movie.

(Higher than one would expect. On a side note after looking at the Rotten Tomatoes page … I have a feeling the actors above are kind of just randomly chosen. At least the main guy in all of the pictures is not one of those three people I don’t think. Reviewer Highlight: This movie looks like it was no fun to make. It certainly was no fun to watch. – Richard Roeper, Ebert & Roeper)

Poster – Sklogs Don’t Mess With No Snakes 2: The Hunt for a MacGuffin (C)

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(Not nearly as good as the previous one, but not the worst in my opinion. Green tone with the snake skin is a good idea… it’s just the skull is nonsense and thus makes the whole poster kind of nonsense and boring.)

Tagline(s) – The hunters will become the hunted. (C)

(Not sure where this tagline came from. The poster doesn’t have one so maybe the DVD (?). Too cliched to really hit the marks. It’s short and sweet and has some rhythm, but you can’t get too many points by just spouting off a common phrase.)

Keyword(s) – blood; Top Ten by BMeTric: 95.5 Disaster Movie (2008); 93.8 Dragonball Evolution (2009); 91.0 Gigli (2003); 90.9 The Room (2003); 90.2 Alone in the Dark (2005); 89.5 The Wicker Man (2006); 88.8 Vampires Suck (2010); 88.7 House of the Dead (2003); 88.6 Street Fighter (1994); 87.5 BloodRayne (2005);

(I think any film that has people with blood in them will get this keyword I guess. What a dumb keyword. Who are these people who just added blood to every film on IMDb one day?)

Movie Stub – Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid (Start class) – Shockingly detailed … and still a Start class? I’m 95% sure that wikipedia doesn’t really have a real review process. I think given that I can basically edit anything on wikipedia at will at this point that I could just declare this C-class and be done with it. So tempting.

Notes – The First Hollywood movie to have its premiere in Fiji. (fun fact)

Nerida Tyson-Chew’s score was nominated for Best Soundtrack Album at the 2005 Screen Music Awards (Australia). (WHAT)

When they captured the stone spider, the character mentions it first as “laba-laba batu”, the Indonesian for “stone spider”.

The character of Cole played by Eugene Byrd mentions a documentary crew who were also hunted by Anacondas which the other characters dismiss as a story, this is in fact a reference to the film ‘Anaconda’, the first film in the series which stars Jennifer Lopez and Ice Cube. (Lame as shit)

Awards – Nominee for the Razzie Award for Worst Remake or Sequel (2005) (I cannot believe this was actually nominated! That is crazy!)

Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo Recap

Before the recap take the quiz and prove you are the foremost thinker in Deuce Bigalow Sciences!

Jamie

When Deuce Bigalow destroys an expensive aquarium while housesitting for an high-end, homicidal gigolo he’s in quite the pickle. Can he enter the gigolo game and earn the cash necessary to repair the aquarium (and maybe get the girl) before it’s too late? Find out in… Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo.

How?! Deuce Bigalow just got fired from his job at the aquarium and has had to put his hopes and dreams on hold. Shortly thereafter, though, he’s asked by a mysterious and dangerous gigolo to apartment sit for him while he’s away. Deuce sees it as an opportunity to live out his wildest fantasies but almost immediately knocks over a very expensive fish tank. Facing certain death at the hands of the gigolo, he enters the gigolo game hoping to earn enough cash to fix the tank. A local pimp, TJ, notices the presence of a new gigolo and takes Deuce under his wing. With the help of TJ, Deuce is able to get some dates with women with particular characteristics. There is a tall lady. There is a fat lady. There is a narcoleptic lady. There is a Tourettes lady. Basically think of the first bunch of entries of an SNL sketch. You can even hear the theme song: “He was babysitting for a gigolo and knocked over a fish tank… oh no! He’s Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo.” In the end the moral is that Deuce is actually a good guy and not sleeping with any of these women, but rather helping them with their self esteem and confidence. In the process he meets the love of his life Kate. Yay! But she breaks up with him after finding out that he’s a gigolo. On no! But then she gets back together with him and helps him fix up the apartment. Yay! But all this doesn’t matter because the gigolo still wants to kill him (?). Oh no! But then they fight and the gigolo gets arrested and Deuce and Kate get married. Yay! THE END.

Why?! Oh, sweet summer child, no. Let’s not plumb the depth of a Happy Madison picture for motivation. Deuce Bigalow merely is. He wants only to be and to love. Technically money ends up being the main motivation for him since he needs to that stave off the homicidal gigolo hell bent on killing him, but that is just because they needed something to be the (very thin) plot of this film.

What?! Interestingly both this film and its sequel are oddly bereft of any and all product placement, which is different for an Adam Sandler production. I presume this is because most companies actually paid Happy Madison not to be featured in the film. So may as well just give a shout out to the bowling date Deuce takes the narcoleptic lady on. Mark it down as a bowling movie in preparation for my new bowling movie podcast, Right Up Your Alley.

Who?! Radio personality Big Boy plays the large lady Flusia that Deuce goes on a date with. It’s actually a pretty solid performance all things considered. Norm MacDonald also has an uncredited but memorable cameo in the film.

Where?! LA, baby. Deucey dreams of living it up on the beach, but instead just cleans the aquariums and ponds of those apartments. LA certainly isn’t a required setting like it was for Bucky Larson, but it’s prominent. B.

When?! I literally have no idea. It could be figured out from the baseball game that Deuce attends with the lady with Tourettes… but I’m not that crazy… yet. F.

I think I disliked this film more than Patrick did. I could certainly see liking parts of this film as a teenager, but now it feels very Bucky Larson-y to me. A ridiculous idiot meant to evoke sympathy by being mostly harmless and naive. The story is just sooo thin and contrived. It is probably the clearest example of what people might mean when they say a film is an SNL sketch stretched to feature length. That is exactly what this is. Patrick?

Patrick

‘Ello Everyone! There was the briefest of moments in the late-90s / early 2000’s in which Happy Madison productions held a stable of comedic talent ready to deploy the instant the ink was dry on their latest killer script. But with A-list talent there will inevitably be a B-list as well, and thus Rob Schneider sauntered into our lives. Let’s get into it!

The Good – … well Jamie might disagree, but this film comes across as mostly harmless. While offensive (especially the tall lady just getting insults slung at her in the street), the primary story of Deuce getting women to believe their beautiful (no maaaatter what they saaaaay (that’s me singing)) is actually somewhat charming. Even if it takes a while to get there and creates a garbage character of Deuce Bigalow in the process.

P’s View on the Preview – Here I will try and describe my mindset going into the film and what I was interested in getting out of it or seeing, to give a kind of connection between the good and the bad. We’ve seen a lot of Happy Madison productions in BMT, but this is the first one ever made and predates their truly dire offerings (Bucky Larson: Born to be a Star and Strange Wilderness) by about a decade. I was very interested to see whether the tone was much different than many of the others or whether this would predict Bucky Larson with a B-list Happy Madison player creating a Z-list Adam Sandler film. On the good side of things I do think the tone changes, Deuce’s story is almost genuinely heart warming. But …

The Bad – Honestly a film like this ages like a warm gallon of milk. Deuce Bigalow is a terrible person who objectifies and ogles women. The character also barely makes sense: Is sex all he thinks about, or is he a fish-lover with a heart of gold? Is he basically a virgin, or some amazing sex God? It is very hot and cold. The B-story involving a crazy cop looking to take gigolo’s down which culminates in a very strange court scene which is then just kind of thrown away.

Sklognalysis – I kind of was thinking on Strange Wilderness and Bucky Larson and came to two conclusions. First, even though I like Steve Zahn more than Rob Schneider, I appreciate Deuce Bigalow more than the actors in Strange Wilderness mainly because all of the characters in that film were just really dumb and annoying. Here at least Deuce has that heart of gold which makes you think “wait a second, am I learning to love over here or what?!” Whereas Bucky Larson has kind of that same character, but everything in the movie is now taken to an extreme that ten years of arrested development has afforded the Happy Madison productions. If Deuce Bigalow was made now it would be direct-to-netflix and Rob Schneider would have been having sex with random women throughout the film. I think I liked Deuce Bigalow more than either of those other films because Deuce seemed to come from a more innocent cinematic time.

The BMT – Well … I guess you’ll see the legacy in the European Gigolo recap. Once we complete the Happy Madison productions filmography there will also obviously be a hearty debate about the general merits of those films as well.

StreetCreditReport.com – I have to admit, and this isn’t actually that surprising, there is no street cred. I can literally find no mention of this film on bad movie lists, even from people who mentioned like 20 bad films from 1999. But that isn’t a big deal, this is a bonus film after all. The sequel is all the cred this guy needs.

Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo Preview

We are Sklogpacking right across Europe and there is literally no other choice for the comedy entry in the cycle than the film for this week. Based on historical evidence this will either be an underrated comedy that he hold close to our hearts… or it will literally be the worst thing we’ve ever seen. That’s right! We’re watching Deuce Bigelow European Gigolo. Obviously watching this critically reviled sequel will involve a bonus viewing of the first film (generally thought to be bad, but at least better than the second film). The sequel took Rob Schneider to beautiful Amsterdam to attempt to figure out who was out killing Male Gigolos across Europe. If it can at least not be a lazy sack of shit then it should come out on top of Strange Wilderness… I’m not holding out hope. Also a reminder that we now have the European mapl.de.map up on the website if you want to check it out. Let’s go!

Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo (1999) – BMeTric: 42.5

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(Actually … nothing super interesting here IMO. Inflection at 2011, increasing rating as votes increase, 50K is right around where I expect, and so is the BMeTric. We’ve done it guys, we’ve analyzed bad movie IMDb plots so thoroughly that they are rote.)

Leonard Maltin – 2.5 stars –  Professional fish-tank cleaner breaks an expensive tank, and in order to pay for it becomes a gigolo. (Why not?) Potty humor and outlandish situations abound, but Schneider’s character is surprisingly likeable in this silly comedy. Marlo Thomas appears unbilled. Followed by a sequel.

(Oh … we know it was followed by a sequel. This is basically my attitude about the film going into it. It kind of has that Happy Gilmore / Billy Madison vibe to it. Innocuous enough if you can accept the very silly and immature humor. It is not really surprising it would end up with 2.5 stars from Maltin who seems fairly accepting of films just being films even without deeper meaning necessarily.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wk_19DT6y9Y

(I love how they kind of had to show the gigolo (Antoine) hanging from the ceiling so that the way Deuce destroys the apartment with the same apparatus wouldn’t be confusing. This is also an incredibly long trailer, the entire part in the beginning with the killer Koi is completely useless. But, it also looks harmless enough.)

Directors – Mike Mitchell – (Known For: Trolls; Shrek Forever After; Sky High; The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water; Future BMT: Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked; Surviving Christmas; BMT: Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo; Notes: His two brothers launched an animation studio, which is probably why he mostly directs animated features at this point. That studio has gone bankrupt twice, and it doesn’t seem like he worked for them at all.)

Writers – Harris Goldberg (written by) – (Future BMT: I’ll Be Home for Christmas; Without a Paddle; BMT: The Master of Disguise; Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo; Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo; Notes: He at one point was the number two ranked tennis player in Canada, and played John McEnroe in the Canada Open.)

Rob Schneider (written by) – (Future BMT: The Animal; The Hot Chick; BMT: Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo; Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo; Notes: I cannot wait until we complete Rob Schneider’s writing credits. It seems like he started on SNL as a writer and converted to a player when Sandler and the rest of his crew joined in 1990.)

Actors – Rob Schneider – (Known For: 50 First Dates; Big Daddy; Muppets from Space; Future BMT: Littleman; Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo; The Animal; Norm of the North; Little Nicky; Knock Off; You Don’t Mess with the Zohan; The Hot Chick; InAPPropriate Comedy; Eight Crazy Nights; Sandy Wexler; Surf Ninjas; Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo; Mr. Deeds; You May Not Kiss the Bride; The Adventures of Pinocchio; The Waterboy; Bedtime Stories; Down Periscope; Big Stan; Click; The Longest Yard; Necessary Roughness; Home Alone 2: Lost in New York; BMT: Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo; The Ridiculous 6; The Beverly Hillbillies; Judge Dredd; The Benchwarmers; Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo; Around the World in 80 Days; Grown Ups; I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry; Demolition Man; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Actor for Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo in 2006; Nominee for Worst Screenplay, and Worst Screen Couple for Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo in 2006; Nominee for Worst Actor in 2007 for Littleman, and The Benchwarmers; Nominee for Worst Supporting Actor in 2000 for Big Daddy; in 2008 for I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry; and in 2011 for Grown Ups; and Nominee for Worst Actor of the Decade in 2010 for Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo, Grandma’s Boy, I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry, Little Nicky, Littleman, The Animal, The Benchwarmers, and The Hot Chick; Notes: SNL alum and frequent collaborator with Happy Madison productions. He is currently on tour with Sandler doing comedy is seems, which is interesting.)

William Forsythe – (Known For: Once Upon a Time in America; The Rock; Dick Tracy; The Devil’s Rejects; Raising Arizona; The Substitute; American Me; Patty Hearst; Cloak & Dagger; City by the Sea; Extreme Prejudice; Hell’s Kitchen; The Waterdance; Lethal Vengeance; Weeds; Palookaville; Future BMT: Freedomland; Virtuosity; Hard Ca$h; Halloween; Out for Justice; Career Opportunities; Blue Streak; The Gun in Betty Lou’s Handbag; Loosies; Dead Bang; War on the Range; Things to Do in Denver When You’re Dead; BMT: Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo; Firestorm; 88 Minutes; Stone Cold; Notes: By far the best note about him is that he co-starred with two NFL players in his career, Brian Bosworth in Stone Cold and Howie Long in Firestorm … we’ve seen both of those movies!)

Eddie Griffin – (Known For: The Last Boy Scout; Undercover Brother; Jason’s Lyric; Brain Donors; The Wendell Baker Story; Future BMT: Date Movie; The Mod Squad; Coneheads; Scary Movie 3; The Meteor Man; House Party 3; My Baby’s Daddy; American Hero; The New Guy; Double Take; Armageddon; Foolish; The Walking Dead; BMT: Norbit; Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo; Redline; Pinocchio; Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo; Notes: Enrolled as a biological engineering major at the University of Miami, but dropped out to pursue comedy. Is ranked as a top 100 best stand-up performers in history by Comedy Central.)

Budget/Gross – $17 million / Domestic: $65,538,755 (Worldwide: $92,938,755)

(Not bad. Pretty promising for a non-Sandler Sandler film I would think. I mean, if you are using a second-rate lead you’d kind of expect a second-rate return, and that is more than enough to legitimize the sequel I would think.)

#28 for the Comedy – R-Rated Youth genre

deucebigalowmalegigolo_r-ratedcomedy

(Always an interesting category, mainly because it is a little confusing that Neighbors is on there but not the sequel … although I think it might be because the second was considered to be less of a frat house theme. Unclear. Anyways, two things, after the 80s boom died down the genre was somewhat relegated to direct-to-DVD. American Pie ushered in a new era, and then even after that Superbad / Knocked Up resulted in a second boom. The genre, I think, is once again relegated to VOD, although given teens still go to the movies a ton, some next-gen filmmaker will hit that feeling of going to high school in the early-2010s at some point. It’ll happen.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 23% (17/75): According to critics, Deuce Bigalow is just too dumb and filled with old, tired gags.

(Considering this is Rotten Tomatoes perhaps the “According to critics” part is a bit redundant. Like … who else would it be according to? This consensus could be made about 80% of the Happy Madison productions.)

Poster – Deuce Gigosklog (A-)

deuce_bigalow_male_gigolo

(I think this is a very clever poster. Artistically presents the entire premise of the film… ignoring the fact that the premise is incredibly thin. Some interesting font would have pushed to this A+ maybe.)

Tagline(s) – He’s not very good looking. But when the lights go out…he’s still not very good looking. (D+)

(This is a very long joke and probably not well used as a tagline. Gotta do better with a comedy film.)

Keyword(s) – male objectification; Top Ten by BMeTric: 90.3 Fifty Shades of Grey (2015); 88.7 Vampires Suck (2010); 87.2 Crossroads (I) (2002); 81.0 Sex and the City 2 (2010); 77.0 Fifty Shades Darker (2017); 75.4 Fifty Shades of Black (2016); 74.3 Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo (2005); 73.7 Psycho (1998); 73.3 Zoolander 2 (2016); 72.2 Going Overboard (1989);

(We are coming for you Crossroads. Although I don’t really recall that film being particularly objectifying of men. At least … not in the same way as Deuce Bigalow is. Hmmm … this is making me explore my biases and I’m growing as a person. Thanks Deuce Bigalow: Make Gigolo.)

Notes – Rob Schneider’s mother Pilar Schneider appears in the film as the woman he mistakes for his date in the Japanese restaurant. (Yeah, I think Rob Schneider is half Asian, which is a kind of ludicrous explanation for why he played an offensive stereotype in I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry).

In the scene where Deuce is walking with the tall woman and the phrase “freak” is shouted, the speaker of that line is actually Adam Sandler. Other than being a producer, it’s his only “credit” in the film. (Ugh)

The person who played the cookie girl was Rob Schneider’s daughter, Elle King. She would later go on to perform “Ex’s and Oh’s”, a song that received moderate airplay. At the time she was named Elle Tanner Schneider. (What the fuck, that song is pretty famous: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0uLI6BnVh6w )

Even though Norm MacDonald was not in the official credits, he was given credit in a roundabout way at the end of the movie. A clip was shown of him as a bartender saying that Norm MacDonald only worked one day on the movie.

The exterior of the house that Deuce Bigelow is leaving with the giant woman is the same as the one used on the TV show Charmed (1998). (FUN FACT)

The first movie from Happy Madison Productions.

Although spelled differently, the name “Berguita” (Kate’s roommate) is a Spanish slang word for “little penis”, this being referred several times by William Forsythe’s character

When Deuce first meets Antoine and sees his weapon collection, Deuce says, “I collect Canadian quarters . . . I got about six of them”. After his first “job” when he goes to the bar, his bill totals $11.50. He gives the bartender (an uncredited Norm MacDonald) “Ten, and six quarters”, presumably his Canadian quarter collection and the total take from his first “job”. (Yeah I did notice this, but also expected Norm to say that those were Canadian and wouldn’t be accepted).

The game that Deuce and Ruth are attending was between the Anaheim Angels and Cleveland Indians. (I love this stuff. Mapping out the “facts” about a movie. I but you could pin down an exact-ish date using this, the entire film takes place in a three week span in which the Angles and Indians plays in Anaheim).

The girl in the pet shop was also in Sorority Boys and unknowingly shows her breasts through a wet shirt in that film as well. (Jesus Christ, I’m done)