Love crappy movies but are too ashamed to admit it? Are you a big Rob Schneider fan but you're tired of being burned? Not sure if you want to waste your money on the same old movie? That's why you have Joe.
Joe Loves Crappy Movies is by Joseph Dunn. Joe willingly goes to see the very worst that Hollywood has to offer. Whenever a crappy movie comes out Joe will be there to see it, make fun of it, and actually review it. Nothing is safe, and nothing is sacred. From the big budget action disasters to the low brow fart based comedies, to anything starring Martin Lawrence? Joe will tear it apart.
With each entry you'll get not only a comic poking fun at the movie, but also a detailed review. Joe's not educated in film or cinematography or acting, he's just a guy that draws comics and likes movies. So if you're looking for the everyman perspective and a little joke in comic form... you're in the right place.
Reality in Film
Ok, I know this isn’t exactly movie related but I want to make fun of American Idol as much as the next guy. I see all the fun that DJ is having with the crazy grey haired guy and I want to play too! I’m not an American Idol fan, but Yeo really is. She watches it taped with her co-workers while they work and they have a grand old time. I’m really ok with that because it means that it never conflicts with anything I want to watch. I’ll never have to argue about taping American Idol instead of Veronica Mars because she’ll just catch it at work.
And my minimal interest is satisfied by updates from Yeo, whatever they report on Access Hollywood, and the random channel flip to laugh my ass off as Ace Young points out a permanent scar while singing a song.
But America Idol. has nothing to do with movies, which is the way it should be, but that prevents me from taking my shots at them ona regular basis. Thus comes the delicate art of weaving together a commentary worth of a thin connection between American idol and the film industry. Actually, it’s not that hard. I give you a deeper look at how Reality TV is worming their way to the big screen.
While American Idol’s only major film project, the blissfully vomit inducing From Justin to Kelly did little except make us question why this gay guy wouldn’t leave that poor girl alone, there have been a handful of reality TV stars that have made it to the silver screen and actually been entertaining. So the influence is there.
Now, lots of folks will go on reality TV specifically with hopes of parlaying that into an acting career. Jerry from Survivor season 2 was pretty vocal about those being her intentions. Well if you’re going to do it, make sure you do it like the star of Poseidon, Jacinda Barrett (Real World: London). She’s made a masterful transition from reality TV to movies in the smartest way possible. By making people forget she was a reality star.
You never want to hop right out the gate and be in some flashy lame Hollywood movie where people will just say “Oh, it’s so and so from the Real World. I can’t wait to see how she dies!” Barrett went the TV rout doing guest spots on the one hour dramas before jumping to the big screen and I think it paid off in terms of the kind of roles she would eventually be offered. Yes she was a random victim in Urban Legends: Final Cut, but plum roles in real movies like The Human Stain, Ladder 49, and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reasons more than balance that out. Her road was unconventional, but I think in the long run it will lead to better work.
One of my favorite reality stars to go to film was Colleen Haskell from Survivor 1 who starred along Rob Schneider in 2001’sThe Animal. Kind of an Ok movie, but Haskel made every scene she was in. Someone that ridiculously cute I could watch on screen for hours. Unfortunately it didn’t take as a couple of TV show appearances later, she vanished.
I wish Paris Hilton would drop of the map. She’s barely a reality TV star. She’s more famous for being famous, still, I thought she actually did a pretty good job in last years thriller House of Wax. She didn’t mess up her lines, and she was actually kind of hot. That’s more than she’s done in her real life.
One notable upcoming film featuring a reality star is Dreamgirls with Jennifer Hudson (American idol) playing Effie White in the story of a trio of black female soul singers that cross over to the pop charts in the early 1960’s.
Hudson got hired for her resemblances to the character and of course her ability to sing, but for me she’s not the big story of this film. I’m just dying for Eddie Murphy to be associated with a big film that’s not another watered down kids movie. Yeah, he’s got the Shrek franchise, which is huge, but they barely count as being Eddie Murphy movies. This guy was a genuine movie star and he’s all but fallen off the map.
He used to make people’s careers by putting them in his movies. Before Martin Lawrence was Martin Lawrence, he was Murphy’s sidekick in Boomerang. (Although Lawrence might as well be Murphy now since their careers are on the same path.) Same deal with people like Chris Rock, Dave Chapelle, and even Halle Berry. Murphy gave all of these people an entrance into Hollywood and now it feels like last years Oscar winner Jamie Foxx (who stars in Dreamgirls) is trying to give him back the keys to the kingdom.
I’m sure I’m misreading it; I just want a real talent to start making awesome movies again. Loved Daddy Day Care though.
What the hell did that rant have to do with reality TV?
Documentaries are the ultimate form of reality in movies, but I’m not sure how much good I can say about them. I really enjoy ones like March of the Penguins and Super size Me which didn’t take a stance but just presented the facts in an entertaining way. It’s a movie like Fahrenheit 911, that presents the facts but then force-feeds you an opinion that really bothers me. It’s a message and propaganda disguised as documentary. And it’s hard for me to admit that because I really liked director Michael Moore’s films Roger and Me and Bowling for Columbine but I just found Fahrenheit to be offensive. It’s not even that I disagree with his rights or even his opinion. He’s right, in my mind, but the films tone and attack left a bad taste in my mouth.
The most recent attempt that comes to mind where a “Realiity TV” style of reality tried to access main stream film was 2003’s The Real Cancun. A faux documentary following a group of teens on spring break. It was sensationalized, and wild, and as real as half the breasts in that wet T-shirt contest. Or as real as half the reality shows on TV. It’s all clever editing. I think most people know that. But for all intents and purposes, the Real Cancun was a 2 hour reality show where you could hear curse words and see boobs. And it bombed horribly.
Thank god for that otherwise we’d be flooded with a whole new genre of Reality Film. Keep it on TV I say. It’s easy to avoid there, and I don’t have to review it on a regular basis.
I have to mention the reality shows about making movies. There’s of course the Ben Affleck Matt Damon produced show Project Green Light which after three seasons and three flops, was shut down. I saw the first one produced, a movie called Stolen Summer but avoided the second The Battle of Shaker Heights, and for the life of me could not find Feast which didn’t look half bad.
It’s a shame this series failed because ultimately their goal to show the process and inspire people to follow their dreams never translated to success. The concept of “hope” took a real hit that day.
The other reality TV series about making a movie was called Kill Reality and it’s angle was that the stars of the movie being made were all former reality stars from other shows. And the script was written by a former reality TV star. And they had to live together in a house. And there was plenty of booze. And a hot tub. And they actually got the movie done! (SHOCK) It’s called The Scorned and I hear it’s pretty good, though I haven’t seen it for myself. Yeo and I did spend about 4 minutes marveling at the DVD in Target one day. We couldn’t believe it actually existed. Stranger things have happen I suppose.
I think I’d rather watch that than From Justin to Kelly, which I actually own, but have never seen all the way through because it’s so bad. I have to watch it in twenty-minute intervals before I’m overcome with the desire to fall asleep forever. Or die.
Everything I’ve mentioned here is of course just a small sample of how Reality TV has snuck its way into the theatre. Most of it is completely inoffensive. I haven’t even talked about some of the clever angles like Jerry Springer’s Ringmaster or Howard Stern’s Private Parts. (Neither counts as a reality movie but one could argue that both leads are reality stars)
The more you dig though, the more you find. I just hope that less fluff and more substance rise to the big screen. Film already has enough fluff. We don’t need more reality to bring it down.
Thanks for reading, guys. Even though this isn’t a movie I’ve got a new incentive image up with Yeo’s reaction to this strip. And don’t forget to vote at Top Web to see yesterday’s incentive for our continued event - What if Joe Was Lawrence Fishburne?
An interview with me went up today over at Hobotrashcan.com. (The top of the article features an actual photo of Yeo and I if you’re curious to compare our cartoon looks to our real world looks.) I admit that I was nervous about it because it was a phone interview and in real life I can tend to ramble, but Joel the writer did a fantastic job. I thank him and the whole Hobotrashcan crew for including me in their fun. Got some more fun stuff coming up. Tomorrow I’ll put up the comic for the Da Vinci Code which took a little while to do but I think ultimately came out pretty well. I hope it translates well. Then it’s non-stop X-men 3 craziness. I can’t wait for that movie. Dear lord I hope it’s good.
Joe – The creator of the strip who has embraced giving crappy movies the chance they deserve. Like the majority of the cast he’s obsessed with boobs.
First Appearance - The Introduction
Yeo – Yeo is Joe’s wife and often the voice of reason in the strip. Having her act rational allows the rest of the cast to embrace being in a comic strip which primarily involves randomly punching people, interacting with fictional characters and talking about boobs. Yeo is smart, beautiful and way too good for Joe. Don’t tip her off.
First Appearance - Fever Pitch
Irv – Joe’s movie-going sidekick who’s always down for watching Jason Statham crescent moon kick some thug through a plate glass window and getting some drinks before after and during a Vin Diesel movie. Like the majority of the cast he’s obsessed with boobs.
First Appearance - Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior
Agent 337 George Jones – A government Agent that took over for Joe after he was bad-mouthing President Bush in the V for Vendetta strip. George ran the show for over a month bring a much needed sense of patriotism and justice to both the strips and reviews. He eventually got too attached to his work, empathizing with Joe’s plight to give crappy movies a fair shake. In a way he came to love crappy movies as well and was pushed out of the position. He spiraled out of control and ended up in prison. His adventures will be told in the limited series JLCM Presents: 337 Locked Up which is set to début Christmas of 09.
First Appearance - V for Vendetta
Other Notable Appearances: Stay Alive, Ice age 2, Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector, Slither, Here Comes Guest week, Let’s Go To Prison
Leonidas – The former king of Sparta who has traveled into the future and is having trouble coping with the modern times. Yelling loudly and kicking people into giant holes doesn’t really work the same way it did in the olden days. As time as gone by he’s adjusted but it’s a safe bet that he’s always one bad message away from throwing a spear through someone.
First Appearance - 300
Other Notable Appearances: Four Brothers, Strip# 300, The Golden Compass, Rambo, Untraceable, The Ladies of Max Paybe
Palpatine – Former Senator, Emperor of the Galactic Empire, Sith Lord... He shows up in the Joe Loves Crappy movies galaxy on occasion to let people know that they’re being stupid. No one’s really sure how he shows up in this universe but chances are it breaks all kinds of copywrite laws.
First Appearance - Episode III: The Dark Side
Other Notable Appearances: Four Brothers, Night Watch, Saw 3, Are We Done Yet
Slow Billy – Billy is a sweet kid but he’s not the sharpest tool in the shed. If you’re watching him for the day be prepared to explain to him the plot of the movie or how popcorn works or, not so much where babies come from, but what babies are. He’s a complete moron.
First Appearance - Four Brothers
Other Notable Appearances: The Chronicles of Narnia, The Da Vinci Code, Vantage Point, Journey to the Center of the Earth
Kyle the Movie Snob – Be careful what fun facts about movies you tell your friends at a friendly gathering or in line for the latest blockbuster, because if you’re even slightly wrong, Kyle will be more than happy to let you know. He usually gets what’s coming to him though. Poor guy has cracked three ribs since joining the JLCM cast.
First Appearance - Ultraviolet
Other Notable Appearances: 16 Blocks, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Transformers, Journey to the Center of the Earth
Jean-Luc Picard – Another lawsuit waiting to happen is Jean Luc Picard who, towards the end of the strip’s first year, became the go-to background character. If there was ever a seat to fill or a random person to place wandering around in the background, nine times out of ten it was Picard. While Picard has crossed paths with Irv he and Joe have never met. Perhaps they will some day but for now just can an eye on the background.
First Appearance - The Producers
Other Notable Appearances: I’m not telling you, that’s no fun. It’ like Where’s Waldo – go find him!
Ice Cream Sandwich – Delicious and… deadly? Usually when you see someone eating an Ice Cream sandwich, someone else is experiencing a substantial amount of pain. Still, how nice is an ice cream sandwich on a hot summer day?
First Appearance - Saw IV
Other Notable Appearances: Bee Movie, Run Fatboy Run, Saw V