Sometimes I like to watch movies I know will be absolutely horrible. Like worse than “B” grade. If you remember anything from Freshman English, you’ll laugh at how poorly these stories play out. There are characters that no one can relate to or care about and situations that could never happen. They’re seriously like train wrecks; it’s so horrible but you can’t look away.
But from practice I have learned that the experience of these movies is exponentially enhanced by your company. The more people you have over, the better. So, by that reasoning, if you’re alone it sucks. I decided to watch a gem last night called “Rumpelstiltskin”. This cinematic masterpiece was made in 1995 and stars no one you have heard of. It’s kind of a fish out of water type tale where Rumpelstiltskin emerges from a thousand year slumber into modern day Los Angeles and tries to take someone’s baby. But in this story he doesn’t spin straw, he’s allergic to it. That’s how they kill him . . . or they turn him back to stone which was how they found him. It’s just weird on so many levels. I knew it would be crappy when I queued it up, but I didn’t realize how boring it would be to watch it alone. You see when you are alone, there is no one to share your commentary with. When there are other people in the room, you can all pick apart the flaws and add your own silly dialogue like in Mystery Science Theater 3000. When you’re by yourself, you just end up talking to yourself. It’ll drive you crazy after a while.
I haven’t seen that many movies I hated in the theaters. The trouble there is that you can’t add commentary, because you have to be courteous to others (unlike the dude that was quoting the Lion King line by line while I sat next to him). But the theater has it’s own way of tricking you into believing that the movie you are seeing is worth the 10 bucks you paid for the ticket. It must be the screen. Part of your mind is convinced that there is a standard for these kinds of movies. I mean that’s why they have the straight to video flicks, right? Then again, some of the worst movies of all time have been on the big screen. (i.e. Batman & Robin, Bucky Larson, Gigli, Shazaam, Laserblast, etc.)
I saw a movie recently that wasn’t bad enough to be in the “waste bucket” category, but it wasn’t as good as I had hoped. “In Time” staring Justin Timberlake. For one thing, Justin Timberlake isn’t the most compelling actor. Maybe he will get better, but I wasn’t moved by his performance. I could give him the benefit of the doubt since the movie wasn’t that good to begin with. I liked the concept, though. That’s what interested me in the first place. (If you don’t know, it’s a futuristic movie where the currency is time and everyone has an internal clock that counts down when they spend time on rent, food, and other necessities. When your clock is zero you die. The rich have the most time and they live forever. Justin Timberlake is poor, someone gives him a decade worth of time, he becomes a Robin Hood, and so on.)
Also, I’m aware that fiction doesn’t always need an elaborate explanation, but they didn’t even bother with the history of why things were the way they were. In fact, the opening line is something like, “We don’t know why, but it’s always been this way.” That disappointed me a little. I would like a little background. They didn’t give us any. And speaking of background, the villain had none. Well . . . they hint at the fact that he used to be a poor person, but that’s all. What about making him relatable to the protagonists in some way. Like he sympathizes with their cause, but he has to fulfill his duties in spite of that. That’s what I think they were trying to do, but they didn’t pull it off.
So my advice is to check the reviews on Rotten Tomatoes. Most of the time, they accurately reflect the quality of the movie. But not every movie is meant for everyone. Some movies only appeal to a certain group. You have to be able to make your own opinion. But . . . I’ve already seen “In Time”, so you shouldn’t see it until it comes out on video. Now that you know it’s less than good, you should RedBox it and invite the homies over. Don’t watch it alone.