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Discuss this week's Joe Loves Crappy Movies here!

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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.

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In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale

Starring: Jason Statham, Leelee Sobieski, John Rhys-Davies, Ron Perlman, Claire Forlani, Kristanna Loken, Matthew Lillard, Brian J. White, Ray Liotta, Burt Reynolds,

Directed by: Uwe Boll

Paramount Pictures

The Official Site of In The Name of the King

Discuss In the Name of the King on the boards!

I love Jason Statham, I’m a huge fan of his brutish, British, badass style and I’m always eager for his next big movie. That said. The man makes some truly terrible films. He’s actually on a hot streak now with films like War and Revolver doing little to make an impact on critics or box office records. But the worst of the bunch, and the crown jewel of the “07-08 Statham trifecta of crap” is easily his latest, In The Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale

King is a Middle Ages-esque story, taking place in a fictitious land that boasts such wonders as tree sprites, mages and bad acting. Based on the video game, King’s central storyline revolves around a power struggle for the rule of this fictitious land. Beyond that I have no desire or inner strength to try and explain the plot to you other than to say that it promptly takes classic themes like control and family that Shakespeare spun into epic literature, and efficiently disrespects them. It’s hard to watch story elements that have stood the test of time magically crumble before you in a poorly performed, clumsily told manner. Not that I would be quick to blame Statham or the rest of a pretty impressive cast. It’s hard to point the finger of blame at anyone other than the films director Uwe Boll

And it’s easy to ay, “Oh, well it’s the director’s fault.” but with three other equally panned video game adaptations in the can, Boll has proven to us that he knows how to ruin good material. His name has become synonymous with awful filmmaking. Not filmmaking so awful that its good or so awful that it’s funny. Just “so awful”.

It has become fashionable to poke fun at Boll, a man so committed to making bad films that he’s petitioned it as a new event in the 2008 Olympic games. I’m no Boll apologist but I kind of feel bad for the guy. Every release seems to introduce another round of insults to a man that is clearly passionate about what he’s doing. And the sad thing is that those two things, video games and filmmaking, are the two passions that he probably shares with those that are tossing insults. If only passion were all it took to translate a well-told adventure onto the big screen. As it is, when it comes to video game adaptations, Boll makes Paul W.S. Anderson (Resident Evil, Mortal Kombat) look like Paul Thomas Anderson (Magnolia, Boogie Nights). That’s not good.

And King isn’t helping matters at all. Of his four gaming adaptations it is the least accessible and most difficult to get through. As far as I can tell it has no real redeemable qualities despite the occasional cool visual and a pretty impressive cast list for any film let alone one directed by a man with a resume that includes Bloodryane.

Besides Statham King features Ray Liotta, Leelee Sobieski and Ro Perlman as a watered down “Little John”. Even the films title character is played by the ledged himself Burt Reynolds, and as if that weren’t enough, Boll even convinced him to perm his wig for the part. But quality casting is nothing new. Boll has always been able to get top-notch talent to come out and play, but as with all his past films, he can’t get anything substantial out of them!

Matthew Lillard makes the most of his villainous heir to the throne role, embracing a wildly exaggerated accent and speaking with such furious passion that random spit is a common occurrence. Of the entire cast it’s clear that he’s having the most fun with it. Sort of in the same way John Travolta really enjoyed playing that alien slave master in Battlefield Earth… and now you see where I’m going with that.

Other than Lillard the cast is scarce to impress. John Rhys-Davies still has a killer voice, Claire Forlani still knows how to look hot… etc. Nothing worth writing home (or in a review) about.

The only thing I’m less enthusiastic about getting into is the visuals. To be fair some of them were pretty sharp. Some CGI work is used sparingly and when it is used it’s used well. I was especially impressed by a third act sword fight between two powerful wizards and John Rhys-Davies’ extra lazy mode of transportation. That stuff works fine; it’s the practical effects that miss the mark.

This lead ghoul featured on horseback in the picture to the right looks pretty solid. He’s lit correctly and looks properly menacing. Now scroll back up to that shot of Statham and check out the rubber-suited Power Ranger rejects he’s about to throw down with and you’ll get a basic idea of the kind of low quality, disposable baddies that were running all over this film.

These henchmen set back the world of make-up and costumes 30 years. It’s 10 steps bellow the Edmond’s Scientific skeleton in Army of Darkness that some stage hand just throws at Ash in the final battle scene, and somewhere just above me in a paper goblin mask drawn by my 1-year-old nephew. The worst thing is that there are dozens of these things on screen at any given time, staring you in the face reminding you that these filmmakers have no idea what they’re doing. As if we could forget.

It’s not Statham’s fault and I won‘t hold it against him. I’ll take the good with the bad. He’s too awesome to just write off even if the he was in Ghost’s of Mars. And it might not even be Boll’s fault. God knows what happens between concept and completion. It just seems wrong to put all that is wrong with In the Name of the King on one man’s shoulders. But it doesn’t matter who’s at fault – In the Name of the King is just bad. Worse than you expect. Easily the worst movie of this very young year. And that’s all you ever need to know about it.

Rating: 2 out of 10 - I actually had hopes for this film. You hate to just walk into a movie assuming it will suck even though common sense or your nagging wife tells you otherwise. You still want to assume that there might be something there worth holding on to. Worth the trip. Worth the years of work that went into making it. I don’t see it, but I didn’t see it in any of Boll’s other films, and I’m sure II probably won’t see it next month when his latest film Postal hits theatres. I am sure that I’ll be waiting in line to see it though. I think I have a serious problem.

God no! I played with the idea a couple years ago that Bloodrayne might actually be DVD Worthy despite a nasty in theater experience. I mean – hot vampire. There’s got to be something there to salvage right? No sir.

When that beast premiered on Sci-fi I excitedly set my DVR to tape it only to suffer through the same lousy performances and awkward storytelling I had convinced myself never truly existed. It existed all right, and with out the beer and camaraderie to soften the blow.

Instinctively, I want to give Boll the benefit of the doubt. I want to believe that a guy this easy going and this excited about the medium of film can make an entertaining movie. So far though he’s had a few too many in a row that were too far off the mark.

I’d like to think that the negative reaction to his films doesn’t get him down too much. His movies still get seen and must have some level of positive support if he continues to have the opportunity to produce them. And after his much publicized boxing challenge to complaining critics it’s obvious that he ‘s willing to laugh at himself a little. But for as hard as he gets it from the Internet community, I hope he’s able to let some of it roll of his back.

Here's hoping Point Break really is based on his life. If it were I would have given him an extra point in the review. Just out of respect…

Never Back Down - Karate Kid, kick boxing style, with Djimon Hounsou as Mr. Miyagi. Score!

The trailer for this movie mirrors Karate Kid so much that it’s scary and I was midway through my forth eye roll before Hounsou shows up like a magic wizard some how legitimizing the blatant retelling. I’m a big fan and it’ll be cool to see him take on the mentor roll in this underdog-fighting flick. Other than that it seems like a perfect match. Johnny’s a bad ass (Cam Gigandet, who will hopefully be able to shake off last Summer’s Who’s Your Caddy by showing off his abs and superman punching a few people), Daniel (Sean Faris who I’ll always remember form a short lived teen drama called Life as We Know It) is new in town and his minor background in boxing just won’t cut it in this UFC world, and they both have decided to dedicate their jump kicks to Ali (Amber Heard) the beautiful blonde who loves to play soccer and listen to Cruel Summer. I’m actually guessing about the Cruel Summer thing, but who doesn’t love that song?

More than likely this movie will come and go, attracting some mild attention from the pre-teens that make movies like Step Up and Stick It overnight sensations. But it could also be this generation’s Karate Kid. Either way… Djimon!

On Tuesday afternoon actor Heath Ledger was found dead in a Manhattan apartment. (CNN's coverage) A day later and the reports are inconclusive as to the cause of death, and I'd rather not speculate on it at all. I'll focus my thoughts on what the world has lost rather than the reason why.

I've written and deleted at least 3 paragraphs of the same old "He was the kind of actor who… " memoriam's you've been reading on every news and movie site for the past two days, but anything I could say would just be more of the same. And the last thing we need is more of the same. I don't know what I could say other than I'd really come to appreciate him as an actor in the last few years and was always eager to see what he was working on next. To know that that's come to an end is deeply saddening. I feel terrible for his family. His little daughter, just two years old. It's a terrible tragedy. There's nothing more to say. My thoughts and prayers go out to his loved ones.

A new guest comic goes up on Friday. Be sure to stop and check it out. See you then and thanks for reading, guys.

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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

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