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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.

Journey to the Center of the Earth

Starring: Brendan Fraser, Josh Hutcherson, Anita Briem, Seth Meyers

Directed by: Eric Brevig

New Line Cinemas

The Official Site of Journey to the Center of the Earth

Discuss Journey to the Center of the Earth on the boards!

So what is Journey to the Center of the Earth about? Not the movie, but the book that it’s based on – what’s that about? Believe it or not I never read the Jules Verne classic. (Another strike against the Collingswood, NJ elementary school program) And believe it or not again, I’m not so curious about how much this latest update, a 3-D extravaganza where three lost souls take a trip into the colourful but dangerous core, borrows from the source and how much is just pulled out of thin air as something that might look cool on the big screen. What I want to know is what the book was really about.

Does Journey to the Center of the Earth have a hidden meaning? Does the core represent man’s hubris? Is Professor Liedenbrock a symbol for Communism? Stuff like that. The kind of stuff wikpedia won’t tell me and I’m probably too dim to figure out reading the book on my own without some 8th grade teacher explaining it to me as I go. So what’s the deal? Any 8th grade teachers (or 8th graders) read JLCM and willing to shed some light on the true meaning of Journey to the Center of the Earth?

Or am I grasping at straws? Is Journey less political propaganda disguised as a rip-roaring good time and more just the good time? The only reason I ask is because this 2008 update isn’t hiding anything. There’s nothing bellow the surface, pardon the pun. The story is about exactly what’s up there on screen. The good news is that what’s up there is a fun little voyage. Not as dazzling as the gimmicky 3-D glasses you’re wearing would have you believe, but enjoyable none the less.

The movie is about a scientist and his nephew (Brendan Fraser and Josh Hutcherson) who begin chasing the incomplete studies of their missing family member. With a hired guide (Anita Briem) they stumble into a cavern that drops them to the center of the earth, which, as it turns out is a lot different than you would have expected.

As far-fetched as some of their encounters bellow the surface are, or the fact that they’re that far bellow the surface at all, I appreciated that the filmmakers tried to explain everything with science. Even in the face of a gorgeous and destructive T-rex on a clear-as-day green-screened set, they still took the time to explain what was going on and why. At the very least they explained it well enough for the 13-year-old target audience to go along with. I’m sure there were a few scientists in the crowd doing some heavy eye rolling but I feel sorry for them. You’d like to think that stories like this inspired them once upon a time. Why should it be different now just because what these characters are doing is impossible? …Okay, yeah. That doesn’t make sense.

As they plummeted into the Earth I thought to myself, “Wow I really expected it to be a bigger group of people. This is great – we’ll be able to focus on these characters and not get distracted!” After the 3rd or 4th obstacle at the core though I found myself wishing that the group included an evil scientist to fight instead of the oddities of the center of the earth. Someone that wanted to use the wonders of the core to his own nefarious devices! Every team of lost adventures needs a Dr. Smith, right? (You believe me now when I tell you I haven’t read the book?) Well, it might not be the best of ideas but in my defence, they really didn’t explore these three characters to their fullest. I’m tempted to say it was a generous amount for a children’s movie but that excuse will only work so many times in this review.

It’s likely though that even the sharpest kids won’t mind a few scientific inaccuracies in the face of the 3-D experience. The effects range from impressive to annoying, but I liked that the filmmakers neither exploited nor neglected the technology when it’s used. There’s definitely down time where you forget there are effects at all, but there’s definitely the occasional spit take and deadly leaping monster that will jolt your head back and remind you to be on guard. Try to take it all in stride. This isn’t the pinnacle of 3D technology, but it’s certainly serviceable in this family film.

And that’s what it comes down to. You could pick apart every aspect of Journey because there are erroneous exaggerations throughout, but you’d only find yourself nit-picking a kid’s movie. It’s like saying Bambi sucks balls because deer can’t really talk. Don’t give me a dirty look. This shit makes as much sense as Transformers and you went to see that twice.

Rating: 6 out of 10 - Gimmicks aside Journey to the Center of the Earth is a reasonably well thought out adventure that the family should be wowed by from start to finish. It’s definitely dumbed down a little from where they could have taken things, but the true spirit of adventure is there, and kids should eat that up.

The best use of the glasses has got to be the mine car sequence where they tear you through a rollercoaster-like trip. They put you right there and make it exciting enough where you only think once or twice about the fact that tribal warriors aren’t chasing you.

Pass. Most of the people that will buy Journey on DVD will do so for the same reasons they saw it in theaters – The 3-D effects. Assuming of course that the home version comes with a couple sets of glasses. Wouldn’t it be something if it only came with one set and the kids had to take turns watching it? I picture a scene where big brother lets little brother use the glasses during romance and plot development, but as soon as the T-rex shows up it’s conveniently “his turn” again.

The 3-D will sell this movie just as well on DVD as it did in theaters. You know what though? If you get stuck slumming it in 2-D there’s a slim chance you’ll have a good time too.

So I was looking out around the interwebs for something interesting on line for Journey (It only took 4 pages on Google images search before I found something both unrelated to the movie and completely inappropriate) and on the main page I found this neat little widget that calculates the other side of the world for you. Simply punch in your zip code and click to see details on where you’d end up if you dug your way through the Earth.

I thought, “This is a great idea!” until I actually entered in the information and found that the other side of the world for this New Yorker is pretty much nowhere. I don’t know what I expected. Maybe that I’d pop my head out of the soil to see the Great Wall of China or the Eiffel Tower and then me and my French doppelganger would go see The Dark Knight and split a croissant. Nope. I end up in the middle of the ocean with a wet piece of bread for one.

Anyway, try your luck. Hopefully the other end of the world yields better results for you.

So in today’s strip we see the return of “Kyle the movie snob” who appeared for the first time way back in the comic for Ultraviolet. He’s made a few appearances here and there since that first savage beating from Ultraviolet and Equilibrium director Kurt Wimmer, but I think this one might be my favorite because he’s getting beaten by a child. Even if you saw it coming, you knew he never stood a chance. Poor bastard.

The Gotham Ninjas Athletic T, in both men's and women's styles, continues to sell well even across the world where football is considered lame. So I appreciate that. Hopefully the coolness of a Batman association will help you in defending the shirt against Soccer purists.

I’ve been in a fog the past few days. We had some water damage that needed to be nipped in the bud and it was two solid days of our lives covered in plastic. I think our cat took it the worst. We’ve all since recovered though and are happy to not have giant watery stains looming above us.

Anyway, thanks for reading, gang. More soon.

Joe Dunn's Facebook profile

Live Journal/Myspace/Rotten Tomatoes/Buzz Comix/Top Web Comics/Comics on the Ipod/The Webcomics List/Online Comics/Wikipedia/Comixpedia/JLCM Map!

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