It’s been a long, dark road but we’ve arrived at the final, some might say most foul, entry in our “You Can’t Make Me, You Can’t Make Me” series. Last week, Mike did some serious harm to my psyche with his cruel and unusual “Baby Geniuses” frontal assault, so this week, I reply with the cinematic poisoned dagger of the soul that is “Freddy Got Fingered,” the most dismal (and one of the only) entries in the “career” of Tom Green, a name that strikes a shuddering chill into the hearts of movie-goers. This movie is Tom at Tommy-est. Mr. Green at his Green-est. There are those who say this movie is a satirical masterpiece, an ironic work of genius. Here at Max, Mike; Movies, we respect all opinions. We know there are no right or wrong ideas . . . except for this one. Those people are wrong. Just. Plain. Wrong. You want evidence? Listen to the sad, tattered remnants of Mike soul dribble out into his microphone. Did I top “Baby Geniuses” with this monstrosity? Listen . . . and find out.
Pray for us, dear listeners! More specifically, pray for poor Max who had to endure Mike’s cruel strike in this week’s “You Can’t Make Me, You Can’t Make Me” series; Mike has chosen a serious garbage fire of a movie, “Baby Geniuses,” a movie based on the “premise” that babies under the age of two years old (that EXACT age, by the way; that’s a plot point) are actually hyper-intelligent creatures who can understand any language and know the secrets of the universe. Because, sure. The film’s Bad Guys, who by some cruel trick of the universe are played by the amazing Kathleen Turner and Christopher Lloyd, are trying to exploit infantile wisdom with infantile script writing . . . I mean evil plans. There’s Uncanny Valley levels of weird effects to make it look like the babies are speaking (did I mention this was live-action and not the badly-animated cartoon it sounds like it should be?), wardrobe montages, baby martial arts, bad and often inappropriate jokes . . . yes, this movie has it all. Seriously, this is so bad, it took me an hour into the film to realize I was watching the wrong movie. Huh? For the answer to that and other questions, dive in with us!
Hello, listeners! Smiley-face, pray-hands, smiley-face-with-cat-ears . . . wow, this is harder than I thought. How come so many people are into these emoji things? They take forever! Yes, in this new episode of the back-alley fight we’re calling “You Can’t Make Me, You Can’t Make Me,” I inflict the animated colonoscopy that is “The Emoji Movie” on poor, unsuspecting Mike. Yeesh. This may have been cruel, even for me. Yes, this is another movie in the vein of “Toy Story,” “Wreck-it Ralph” or “Inside Out” which involves the disturbing trope about “things you didn’t know were actually sentient.” Apparently there’s an entire world in each of our smart phones; you know those little pictures you send when you don’t feel that dumb old “words” will do the job? They’re actually self-aware creatures, forced into servitude by the all-powerful phone users . . . huh. This is starting to sound like “Tron.” Well, is it like Tron? Is Mike still speaking to me? Come, find out! Heart, cat-head, bandicoot.
Welcome back to “Max, Mike; Movies”, and here we are slap-bang in the middle of the mind-mangling fray we call “You Can’t Make Me, You Can’t Make Me,” where Mike and I are facing off against one another. Not with bullets or blades but with the weapons we know best: bad movies. In this series, we’re choosing the worst movies we can find and forcing each other to watch them. This week, Mike strikes back at my “Mazes and Monsters” stab with a savage riposte called “Pixels,” one of the most Adam Sandler-y of the Adam Sandler oeuvre. This movie is based on a two and a half minute short with the simple premise of an alien invasion/attack. However, for some reason, the aliens are manifesting as avatars from classic video games, such as Pacman and Space Invaders. Two and a half minutes, and you know what? It works. As a short. As one hundred and six minutes of movie? Starring (of course) Adam Sandler, Kevin James, Josh Gad and Peter Dinklage (oh man, Mr. Dinklage, please forgive me for in any way reminding people that you were stuck in this film. I hope the paycheck covered your children’s’ college tuition. And grad school), this movie follows the “Ready Player One” model as a fantasy for those who grew up in the eighties. Hi, guys! Remember all those hours you wasted in the video arcade playing Centipede? Turns out it wasn’t a waste of time! Those “skills” are the very thing humanity will need to fight off an alien invasion! See, it’s a GOOD thing you never went outside!
Hoo boy. So, this film makes me question if there is truly any good in humanity. Um, I mean, come listen and see if I liked it or something. Oh dear, was that a spoiler?
You find yourself in a dark forest at the border of the
fabled kingdom of “Max, Mike; Movies!” The supremely evil yet disturbingly
handsome necromancer SauruMax has cast the terrible ninth-level curse of “You
Can’t Make Me, You Can’t Make Me” on the half-gnome, half-smurf Mikey the Pantsless,
forcing the poor creature to endure the torments of yet another terrible
movie. Will you embark on an epic quest
to help the tragic yet flatulent Mikey? Will you endure the agony with him? Will
you remember to loot the bodies? Will you cast Magic Missile at the darkness?
Yes, this week I subject my unfortunate colleague to a gorge-risingly dull piece of tripe, based on the “Let’s Take Advantage of Parents’ Fears About Dungeons and Dragons” novel by Rona Jaffe and starring a bunch of nobodies, with one or two notable exceptions. One of them is this kid named Tom Franks or something; seems like he might actually make something of himself, once he scours the stench of this stinkfest off himself. For a movie that’s supposed to terrify parents, it seems more interested in slowly boring its audience to death. Well, that’s one way to earn experience points, I guess. It’s got all the elements of D&D: clueless eighties parents, no real concept of how role-playing games work, and hats. Lots of hats. Hearken unto us and see if this movie captures the essence of D&D or if it just captures the essence of a TV movie that should be avoided at all costs. Roll for initiative!
Ding! And we’re here for another bone-cracking,
skull-crushing, eye-gouging (self-inflicted, most likely) round of “You Can’t
Make Me, You Can’t Make Me” here at “Max, Mike; Movies!” This week’s chosen
cinematic rusty knife has been chosen by Mike and shoved into my intestines for
my watching agony. I mean pleasure . . . no, no I don’t. This week, Mike’s chosen “poker hand” is the
2008 musical “Repo! The Genetic Opera.” This movie . . . how does one describe
it? Well, how does one describe your average slag heap? We have an . . .
unusual cast: Paul Sorvino, who was actually trained as opera singer (a LONG
time ago), Anthony Stewart Head (Giles, from “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”), Alexa
PenaVega (from the “Spy Kids” movies), Paris Hilton . . . no, that’s not a
typo, and Sarah Freakin’ Brightman.
Sarah Brightman. Acclaimed Broadway star, major voice from the original
cast of “Phantom of the Opera”, is in a movie with Paris Hilton. Because when
you think “Sarah Brightman,” you immediately think “Paris Hilton” in the same
breath. Those two go together like fine
champagne and the Wankel Rotary Engine. Somehow they got her in this
movie. I can only hope that they
released her family unharmed afterwards.
The plot? Picture s-f writer Larry Niven’s “organlegging” storylines but make it legal, throw in a predatory payment plan, guys in hazmat suits based on fetish bondage gear who “repossess” organs, and fifty-eight, count ‘em, fifty-eight songs. There’s a bunch of other plot, too. Is it engaging? Did I end up caring about the plot, the characters, the songs or the sets? Or did I just care about someday getting my hands around Mike’s throat? Tune in, turn on and find out.
Please make sure your safety harness is tightly secured and that your eye and ear protection is firmly in place, ‘cause in this week’s “You Can’t Make Me, You Can’t Make Me”, we’re taking on one of the most hated movies of the last quarter century: “Showgirls.” Starring “Saved By the Bell” alumna Elizabeth Berkley as a dancer/stripper (I’ll let that description sink in for a moment), this Razzie-sweeping tower of dreck was my choice for Mike’s delectation and detestation. Mike, whether he realized it or not, took it easy on me with “Sherlock Gnomes.” This week, I show him what mistake that was. Directed by Paul “Basic Instinct” Verhoeven, this movie continues his ongoing themes of respect and empowerment for women andbwahHAHAHAHAHAHAH! I’m sorry, I couldn’t even type that with a straight face. Again, as per the rules settled on by the International Society of Uniform Cinematic Knowledge (iSUCK), only Mike had to experience the sheer power of “Showgirls.” And when I say “experience the sheer power,” I mean it in the sense of sitting down in a pool of water with a live multi-megawatt power cable. I merely stood back, wearing my smoked glasses, watched the sparks and listened to the screams. Join us now, and enjoy Mike’s screams along with me.
Hang on to your hats and your lunches, most respected listeners! We’re starting up a brand-new series this week on “Max, Mike: Movies.” For the last few weeks, we’ve been watching some pretty swell movies, really fine examples of cinema. Well that. Ends. Now. We’re starting a new series, appropriately titled “You Can’t Make Me, You Can’t Make Me!” wherein Mike and I challenge each other (and when I say “challenge,” I mean “torture and abuse”) by playing a sort of Bad Movie Poker. We take turns choosing the worst pieces of cinematic dreck we can find and forcing the other person (and ONLY the other person) to watch them. We will then compare every two weeks and see who had the “best” hand, “best” meaning “came closest to causing the other person to claw their own eyes out.” Now as you’ve guessed, this is no easy task. The two of us are certainly no strangers to bad movies (remember “In Search of D&D”?) so we’ve really had to pull on the hazmat suits and slog our way through Hollywood’s toxic waste dumps to bring you the most steaming radioactive slagheaps every to be projected on a screen. This week, Mike makes the opening salvo by launching an animated crapburger of a sequel that NO ONE demanded, “Sherlock Gnomes,” the follow-up to “Gnomeo and Juliet.” Yes, these are movies about sentient garden gnomes, based entirely on their bad-pun titles. Want to see how badly I’m bleeding after being subjected to this celluloid root canal? Join us . . . if you dare.