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Sniffing glue, watching movies


By Craig Shank and Mike D’Avria



What did you do this year? It was a big year for a lot of things, but movies shined brightest in this year full of big blockbusters, sequels, prequels and even small independent flicks. It used to be a big deal when a film made $100 million. Nowadays it seems that if a film does not reach this mark, it is unsuccessful. Especially since if a film made $104 million this year, it still was only the 21st-highest-grossing film. That's right, 21 movies this year have already cracked triple-digits, and it's not over yet.\nSeven of the top 20 films are still in theaters, and there's still half a month left, which will be filled with other huge movies, like, say, "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers." But were all of these movies really worth seeing, and is it a good thing that "Scooby-Doo" grossed $151 million?\nIt is good to see a lot of people enjoying movies, but are we really seeing good movies? To be honest, I have not seen eight of these 21 films, but that is because there is no need to see some of these flicks because I know right now that I will be wasting my money on some crappy acting and an even crappier plot.\nCome on, how did "Sweet Home Alabama" make this much cash? Well, actually, this is a pretty simple explanation. One line in the trailer was really funny. You know, the one with, "You have a baby … in a bar." I will admit, this is pretty funny, but just because one line is funny does not mean we have to spend $124 million on it. If that's all it takes, then why haven't I cashed in on this trailer phenomenon? \nBut c'mon, how the hell did "XXX" make any money? I did actually see this, but that was because it was the first weekend out before reviews came in, and for some reason I did not feel like thinking for two hours. Not only did I not have to think while watching this horrible piece of triple-crap, but I know that brain cells were killed while seeing it. It must have been from all the other idiots in the theater sniffing glue.\nThis was by far the worst movie of the year, but people in the theater thought it was amazing. Vin Diesel, who has been called "like Stallone and Schwarzenegger, but a good actor," is by far one of the worst actors ever. For some reason I like him, though, as long as he does not talk, ever. Just let him drive cars, get in fights and have sex with really hot girls. Actually, you don't need Diesel in that last situation.\nAnother crap-fest was "Men in Black II." I personally loved the first "MIB," but the great thing about it was the initial discovery of the Men in Black world, and that we were just ignorant to it. The plot in the first one blew as well, but other things made up for it. This sequel, which was about as long as an episode of "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air," was just plot, so it blew as well.\nIn reality, though, a lot of these movies were really good. Of the obvious ones that made a lot of cash, "Spider-Man" was one that, in fact, was a pretty badass movie. Sam Raimi proved that he really is a genius, and Toby Maguire proved that he isn't such a "Wonder Boy" weenie.\n"Harry Potter" was good, and pretty scary for a child (just wait for the third one, though), and "Star Wars: Episode II" brought that franchise back to entertaining roots. (Notice I did not say it was amazing like the originals, but it sure was a good time.) Another great time was "The Ring," which frightened me as well as made me realize that thrillers actually can be creative and original.\nProbably my favorite movie of the summer, which a lot of people saw but hated, was "Signs." This is deserving of the cash it made simply because it was the definitive movie. Rarely does a movie make me laugh out loud, scare the pants off me and make me want to cry like a little girl. That's what a movie is supposed to do -- entertain -- and that is what "Signs" did.\nSo overall, 2002 was a pretty good year for pictures. There were a lot better movies released that did not make much money, like "The Rules of Attraction," or "Bowling for Columbine," but that's what happens when people don't want to think, instead opting to huff paint thinner and watch Vin Diesel ramp motorcycles.\nLuckily for us, though, there are tons of new movies coming out that are sure to reach a mainstream audience as well as make us enjoy ourselves. "LOTR," "Chicago," "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind," "Gangs of New York," "Adaptation," and "Catch Me if You Can" all come out within the next three weeks, and all these films look pretty good and entertaining.\nSo go out and spend your money, but spend it wisely. We don't want to convince filmmakers to make "XXX 2," or would they just call it "XXXX?" Whatever they call it, I'm sure it would suck twice as hard.

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