Archive for February, 2010
First off, I would like to thank all you readers for your continued support of my blog. Your positive comments and enthusiasm makes it a joy for me to write. When I started the blog 2 years ago, I thought it was going to just be a summer project to keep me busy, but now, 50 posts later, because of your continued readership, I’m still going strong. So thanks!
Some interesting news: I have a statcounter on my blog so I can see how many hits I get, and two weeks ago for some reason I got an abnormally high amount of hits. 743! Then 300 the day after, 200 the day after that, and it has been in the hundreds every day since then. I tried to figure out why, and after some research I found out that a lot of those numbers come from people who get to the blog through a google image search. Specifically one google image has lead a lot of internet browsers to me.
This picture of BUG HALL. The kid who played Alfalfa in the Little Rascals movie. I wrote a post on him a couple years ago, and that page is considered a lead “entry page” into my blog. How could 235 people want to google a picture of Bug Hall? My guess. It’s Bug Hall. Every day he googles himself at least 30 times, and he gets his parents and siblings to do the same, just to see if anything’s changed. Anyway, thanks Bug! You’ve really increased my visibility on the internet.
ALRIGHT. Now the good stuff:
I’ve been really into Arnold Schwarzenegger movies lately. They are a pleasure to watch, the action is always pretty good, and they all rate about a 10.0 on the unintentionally funny scale. My most recent foray into Ahnuld cinema is the film: THE LAST ACTION HERO.
THE LAST ACTION HERO is the most Meta movie I’ve ever seen. It’s about a loser kid who LOVES movies (no, that DOESN’T sound familiar to me). Especially Arnold Schwarzengger movies (interesting…). But he loves movies where Arnold Schwarzenegger plays a bad ass cop named Jack Slater. This kid is friends with this old dude (played by the guy who plays Jack Lundy in Mrs. Doubtfire) who runs a movie theater in the ghetto of Los Angeles. The old dude gives the boy a magic movie ticket that HARRY HOUDINI gave to him as a kid, and the action begins.
Now Harry Houdini was known for being a magician. But no one thought he was actually magical. This movie’s entire plot is predicated on the notion that Harry Houdini is magical. Moving on.
The kid takes Harry Houdini’s magic ticket with him to watch a Jack Slater movie, and suddenly BAM! The kid’s in the Jack Slater movie! With Arnold Schwarzenegger. Playing Arnold Schwarzenegger playing Jack Slater. You still with me? The kid tries to convince Jack that he’s in this movie, and that he is actually Arnold Schwarzenegger, but Jack refuses to believe this, even though the kid predicts when Jack is about to say things like, “Ill Be Back.”
By the way: I hate “kids” in movies. They are so annoying and they ruin everything. Kids who are supposed to play self aware characters who say things like, “Mom wouldn’t like this!” or “That was AWESOME!” just piss me off. Especially kids in adult movies. Kids who are cute and stuff like Mara Wilson are adorable, and I can’t get enough of them. Alright. Back to the movie.
The movie seems like it’s just a spoof of Arnold movies, but starring Arnold himself. So you get intentional humor, like this funny sequence where you see a preview of Arnold playing Jack Slater playing Hamlet and there is this exchange:
Hamlet: Hey Claudius! You killed my father! Big mistake!
Narrator: Something is rotten in the state of Denmark, and Hamlet is taking out the trash.
Old Man: Stay thy hand, fair prince.
Hamlet: [shooting him] Who said I’m fair?
Narrator: No one is going to tell this sweet prince good night.
Hamlet: To be or not to be? Not to be. [shoots him].
And of course there are the weird, ridiculous, intentionally funny, but in actuality disturbing, lines of dialogue like this:
Danny Madigan: I though I was going to die.
Jack Slater: Well I’m sorry to disappoint you but you’re gonna live to enjoy all the glorious fruits life has got to offer – acne, shaving, premature ejaculation… and your first divorce.
Premature ejaculation? WTF.
The movie is also weirdly meta because other actors appear as themselves playing a “character” in movie reality. The kid, Danny, recognizes this one policeman as F. Murray Abraham, the actor who played Salieri in the movie “Amadeus” (which is about Mozart). But then the movie gets weird. Jack Slater says he’s never heard of Mozart, and then later on when Jack gets into the real world, he listens to Mozart for the first time and really likes it. So in MOVIE Land, Mozart never existed? No Classical Music exists? How did music progress? Was it just Gregorian chants? Reading too deeply into absurd ideas like this make this movie particularly fun to watch.
But back to META-LAND. As I just mentioned, Jack Slater gets transported into the real world to try and stop the movie’s villain (an actor doing a half-assed Alan Rickman impression) from killing the “real” Arnold Schwarzenegger at a movie premiere for a new Jack Slater movie.
So lets try and sort this out. We have Arnold Schwarzenegger playing Arnold Schwarzengger playing Jack Slater. Then we have Arnold Schwarzenegger playing real life Arnold Schwarzenegger, who himself is just another parody of Arnold Schwarzenegger. Who is the real Arnold? What’s going on!!!!@!#$%^#@$%^#$%^
Sidenote: This reminded me of the last episode of this season’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, where Larry David plays George Costanza in a rehearsal for the Seinfeld reunion. What was bizarre and meta about this was that Larry David the person was playing Larry David the character playing George Costanza the character who was based on Larry David the person. TRRRRIIIIIPPY.
Anyway this movie was fun to watch, was directed by John McTiernan, the director of DIE HARD, and I recommend it to anyone in the mood to get their mind blown. Also Veronica Vaughn (Bridgette Wilson Sampras) is in it. Score.
To speak further about Arnold himself, I must say that he is such a fascinating person. The man is our governor. Californians elected Austrian body builder and film action star Arnold Schwarzenegger (who had no prior governmental experience) as our governor because we loved his persona. During the election, he played himself up as the action star and that’s why we voted for him. We wanted an action star as our governor. That’s why I don’t lay the blame with him, I think that Californians have a very strange sense of reality. In our minds, we cannot separate him the character from him the person because we love Hollywood, and who really is Arnold the person?
Then we were surprised and disappointed that he had trouble balancing the budget and passing effective legislation. That’s what happens when you elect the Terminator into public office!
True Story: I met Arnold Schwarzenegger as a child. I was in a dance studio with my mom waiting to pick up my older sister who was in a jazz class with Arnold’s daughter. Arnold was there to pick her up. Two moments stand out for me 10 years later:
1- I was drinking a Mountain Dew, and I burped fairly loudly. He turned around in his chair and looked at me in disgust.
2- We were in the studio watching the girls show us (the parents) the new dances they had learned today and Arnold kept yelling things out to the 11 year old girls. Things like: “Shake it Katarine!” (his daughter). “Move your bodies girls!” and “YEA! That’s GREAT!”
This is him smoking a joint.
I wonder if he’s played the part of Ahnuld so long, even he cannot distinguish his persona from his true self. I hope so. That’s the world I want to live in.
PS. If you are a reader of this blog, and you have your own blog, please feel free to link my blog to your blog. If you let me know, I will respond in kind. Thank you. And God Bless America.