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.
Starring: Karl Urban, Russell Means, Moon Bloodgood, Jay Tavare, Clancy Brown
Directed by: Marcus Nispel
Adult Swim - Official Site of the Movie
The first time I saw anything about Pathfinder was way back in the summer of 2006, right around the time the Yeo and I got married actually. My first reaction was that it looked like it could be fun, historical, action adventure with some cool stunts and a sweet story, but that the name was completely ridiculous. In fact the joke in today’s comic was thought up within 3 minutes of seeing that poster for the first time. Beyond the title giggle fit I was having, the thing that really stuck with me is that this was a great decision for the movie’s star, Karl Urban.
Urban has taken a bit role in the Lord of the Rings films and parlayed it into a film career filled with some interesting choices and a lot of variety. Especially for a guy whose physique and good looks could easily have labelled him as the next big “good guy, action hero”. What he’s managed to put together with his roles in The Bourne Supremacy, Doom, and even Chronicles of Riddick (and who could forget him as Cupid in Xena) might not be the brightest resume of the young up-and-comers in Hollywood, but it really shows that he’s willing to take chances with his roles and tackle drastically different characters each time he shows up for work. The addition of Pathfinder to that list seemed like a really fantastic fit, especially since it was his first real time stepping up to carry the movie on his own.
Unfortunately there’s little in Pathfinder or Urban’s part in it to get excited about. It’s an empty role in an empty movie where the only diversity from the other charters Urban has played is the style of his hair and the people he’s killing. As a man of Viking heritage stranded in the new world and raised as a Native American, Urban’s character is viewed as the constant outsider. Welcome, but always held at arms length by his adopted culture. You’d think there’d be a wealth of character material to explore there but poor storytelling rushes through the exposition in favor of bloodshed.
That bloodshed comes courtesy of a new group of Vikings that have come to give this “America” thing another shot! They’re ruthless in their genocide, toying with and destroying every native they come across. For a moment it’s poetically sad. You know – slow motion sword swings and stunned faces of children with swelling orchestral music. But then some dudes head gets lopped clean off and you’re too busy squirming in your seat to think about the family that just lost their father. There’s got to be a good balance but it turns out that a Viking on horseback slashing through a crowd of people isn’t it. Who’d of thought?
Urban’s character returns from hunting to find his town ravaged. He shows up just in time to witness his father’s dramatic death before he’s left alone to fend against the warriors himself. At this point… I couldn’t have been happier. The movie suddenly turned into Primitive Die-Hard. How do you say Yippie Ki Yay, mother fucker.” in traditional North-eastern Native American languages? I couldn’t figure out what tribe they were, but guess what - It doesn’t matter.
That’s not what this movie is about. This movie is about the cheap thrill and the big surprise when you see how gruesome they’re willing to go. While some of it is pretty cool, the majority falls far short from being an action sequence worth remembering let alone truly horrific. This falls far short from some of the things we’ve seen in movies like Hostel or even the trailer for the upcoming Rambo sequel, John Rambo. (Holy God, he straight up liquefies that guy with the mounted gun.) There’s a fun showdown on the ridge of a mountain and some clever tactics dealing with the changing of the season, but there’s nothing here you haven’t seen before or won’t see again.
Things unravel predictably and the love story with the absolutely stunning Moon Bloodgood, nor some serious acting-school lessons from Russell Means, are enough to keep things on track, keep you interested, or make you care what happens. And to be honest, I would have been ok with that had they been able to follow through with the action. Really commit to making it a shockingly, grisly adventure. But it falls far short.
Urban’s stock hasn’t been hurt too much with me. As much as I admire the choices he’s made in his career, the truth is that most of the choices have been for interesting roles in mediocre movies. Ultimately this is neither a good or bad choice for his career because, good or bad, (Trust me, it’s bad)… people have already forgotten it.
Rating: 3 out of 10 - To be honest I didn’t expect too much form this movie but I was surprised at how apathetic I was by the time it came to an end. I was almost upset at how little I cared about the characters or the outcome. I’ve had time to get over that, but not enough time where I’d recommend watching this movie. Even on a dare. Even to my enemies. Even to people that love Native Americans and Vikings. I might recommend it to people that hate those people. Pathfinder isn’t disrespectful in its historical accuracies, just in its crappiness.
What are the chances of me actually getting sideswiped by a Nissan Pathfinder? About the same as me seeking out Pathfinder on DVD. Maybe slightly better. There’s just nothing in the film for me to look forward to, and with its yo-yo release schedule, and overall poor performance I think it’s safe to say that a low priced DVD with few extras will make a very quiet debut sometime in the next two months.
Pathfinder heated up pretty quick. Before you knew it heads were being chopped off and arrows were plunging into backs with blood-spattered bursts during high-speed chases. As it did it occurred to me that Pathfinder could possibly be the no-holds-barred version of Mel Gibson’s Apocalypto. Granted, Apocalypto is a brutally gory movie with some extremely graphic animal attacks and human sacrifice scenes. Though if I’m being honest it was the under water birth scene that sent shivers up my spine more than any vicious hunting accident or ritualistic bloodletting.
But as violent as Apocalypto is, it takes its sweet time getting there. There’s forty minutes to an hour of set-up where the Mian way of life is detailed with a lot of care. This is of course important in the context of caring about the characters, but I wasn’t ready for the waiting game. I don’t know if it was all the hype about how violent the film would be, but for me the movie didn’t really heat up until the main character is captured by the larger tribe and forced to fight for his life. From there on out it’s a non-stop ancient version of Die Hard. Die Hard 5: Die Until Your Race Gets Whipped Out and the History Books Forget You!
Pathfinder had a slight glimmer of being the all Die-Hard version of the primitive man versus the stronger primitive group of men. It never really gets to that point though but instead threatens you all the way through that it might. The action is plenty gory but also boring and uninspired in comparison to the violent dinosaur Gibson showed us he was hiding inside him. It’s a bloody shame.
Apocalypto is now available on DVD, and is worth a viewing for sure.
In the ”About the Comic” section of the Aqua Teen Hunger Force review from Tuesday, I told a story about that comic and this comic for Pathfinder going up against each other in this thread located in the members section of the Digital Pimp boards. The majority of the folks on the board said they preferred the ATHF strip over the one for Pathfinder. Of course I personally prefer the one for Pathfinder for it’s complete randomness and ability to become a long term running gag. Cars smashing into Vikings should win every time! It’s like a straight flush or a bigger knife. Ah well.
Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End is out tonight! Some of you lucky folks already have your tickets and on the record – I hate you. Ok I don’t. But I do. In a playful way. But not really. Anyway… I’m holding out to see it with some friends, but the good news is that the comic is all set to go so I should have a review up sometime over the weekend. Unless family matters gets in the way. (love that show.) I’m also hoping to catch 28 Weeks Later this weekend with my brother Sam and I have a fun idea for a comic so hopefully we’ll see that early next week.
On Monday after work this week I had a chance to go out and see 28 Weeks Later, but when I got to the theater I just looked at the marquee and though. “I’m not really up for being freaked out. I want to be delighted dammet! One for Waitress please!” I’ve got a comic for that but don’t wait for my review, just go out and see it now. It’s quite delightful.
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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