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March 4, 2008 | Comments ()


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A Pajibical Nightmare

The Daily Trade Round-Up / Dustin Rowles

Trade News | March 4, 2008 | Comments ()


After years of empty threats that kept us only a hands-reach away from sample-sized bottles of Drano (maybe the boozehound would know what mixes best with drain cleaner), the motherfuckers have finally gone and pulled the trigger. Granted, Bumped is neither an official remake of The Breakfast Club nor a project with any formal association with the John Hughes masterpiece, but it is being proudly described as a “modern-day version” of the film that, ever-so-briefly, made dandruff kinda sexy (pre-made over Ally Sheedy was infinitely fuckable). Worse, the unofficial remake has McG in the producer’s seat and his protégé, Anna Mastro, at the helm — she worked closely with McG on Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle and “The O.C.” (while producing the Pussycat Dolls reality show). Actually, I’ve agreed to let her off easy — I’ll shoot her in the head before burning down the house that she and McG are strapped to a chair in, the appropriate punishment for attempting even an unofficial remake of The Breakfast Club (so says my handy-dandy copy of The Beginner’s Guide to Torturing and Killing Hollywood Industry Insiders, page 49, under the heading: “John Hughes Remakes and Smoke Inhalation: A Primer.”) Worse, the film abandons high school and focuses instead on the most insufferable of all demographics: The whiny, self-obsessed twenty-something (no offense), of which there are five, all of whom are stranded together in the Chicago O’Hare airport after their flight is bumped. Lizzy Weiss, producer/writer of the short-lived (or is it still airing?) “Cashmere Mafia,” wrote the script, and thus warrants trolley massacre for enabling the project.

And if leaving a steaming pile of excrement on the chest of your childhood memories wasn’t enough, Hollywood apparently wants to wash it off with a urine hose, because there is also talk of a sequel to 1984’s The Last Starfighter. Why anyone would create a sequel (and not a remake) of a film that only made $30 million during its initial run 24 years ago, and which no one likely remembers anyway, is beyond the comprehensive abilities of mere mortals, but there you go. The original director, Nick Castle (Major Payne) and its star, Lance Guest, are in talks to revive the “franchise,” about a video-game expert that lived in a trailer park who was recruited as a gunner for an alien defense force. Apparently, the sequel will focus on the son of the Starfighter. Personally, I’d probably be more upset, but I only just realized that The Last Starfighter was not what I was thinking it was, namely Louis Gossett’s magnum opus, Enemy Mine. Shitty early 80s alien fighter pilot movies, along with Iron Eagle all run together in a psychic blur, repressed on the advice of my psychotherapist.

Elsewhere, Judd Apatow continues to mine every conceivable iteration of the relationship-comedy, as he and Jason Segel — who wrote and stars in the upcoming Forgetting Sarah Marshall alongside Kristen Bell — have re-teamed for The Five-Year Engagement, a “raunchy” comedy about the ups and downs of a couple’s interminably long courtship. Segal will star as the leading man, while Apatow will continue to hold the position of foreman in the Apatow Raunchy Comedy Factory. Last summer, I opened by review of Knocked Up with this very prescient sentence: “Welcome to a new Hollywood, folks — it’s Judd Apatow’s world, and we’re a better goddamn world for it.” I had no idea at the time just how right I was, that it would indeed become Apatow’s Hollywood, but I’m beginning to rethink my position that we are a better world for it — Apatow is quickly becoming to producing/directing what Will Ferrell is to acting. The guy needs a little backlash to slow his roll, else his films are destined to become the next form of subgenre porn — we’ll call it Stoner Porn.

By default, really, I love any movie that gives John Goodman a job, so I’m reluctantly excited about Gigantic, an “offbeat” indie comedy (oh, aren’t they all?) about a mattress salesman, played by There Will Be Blood’s Paul Dano, who falls in love with one of his customers, played by Zooey Deschanel. And if the pairing of Deschanel and Dano weren’t bizarre enough, Matt Aselton’s debut as writer and director also features this brilliant piece of oddball casting: Ed Asner will play Dano’s pot-smoking, gangsta-rap loving father. Goodman will play Deschanel’s father, who I’m guessing just likes fried chicken.

Of minor interest, Anne Heche has replaced Jennifer Jason Leigh as the jilted lover to Ashton’s Kutcher’s serial womanizer in Spread. Laura Linney is also in the film, as she clearly does not yet understand that Kutcher’s presence guarantees mediocrity or worse. Meanwhile, Jonathan Mostow (Terminator 3) will adapt for the big screen The Megas, a comic book set in a future in which the United States is governed by a monarchy. Elsewhere, due to scheduling conflicts, Ellen Page has dropped out of a project we mentioned a few weeks back, Sam Raimi’s Drag Me To Hell — Alison Lohman has been tapped as her replacement (which is aces to me). And, finally, Tim Allen will make his feature directorial debut with Crazy on the Outside, a comedy about an ex-con who finds his life on the outside much crazier, especially once he enters his sister’s world. It will star Ray Liotta and Julie Bowen; oh yeah, and it will suck.

In the trailer watch, what do we have here? Offensive, unfunny stereotypes; obnoxious accents; midget humor; comedy broad enough to knock the Earth of its axis? Ah, yes: The new Mike Myers film arrives in theaters in less than four months! Get excited:

Finally, what are y’all doing this weekend? Well, unless you’re going on one of those special Mexican cruises where diarrhea comes free with the buffet, I guarantee you’re going to have a better time than I. Here’s where I get to spend two hours and $7 of Pajiba’s advertising revenue:




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