Sunday, December 04, 2005

Derailed Arrives Safely At Its Destination, Fifteen Minutes Late At Union Gate 14.

Derailed
2005, USA
Mikael Hafstrom
35mm

I saw this film because I was convinced that it didn’t exist. The recent case of a fake film critic had confirmed what I had always suspected, which is that film reviewers aren’t actually people, they’re just walking collections of quippy remarks easily quotable on movie posters. It stands to reason, then, that if there are fake critics to bolster crappy films, there must be fake films to bolster crappy critics. Derailed seems like just such a movie, with easy targets in the lead and title that couldn’t have been focus-grouped to be more pun-friendly. There’s nothing a film critic likes more than tearing apart a movie that’s doomed to failure. They’re like vultures circling a retarded child who got lost in the desert. Everyone knows the thing’s going to die and stink, but still they gang up on it, and even though for a moment you feel bad about the poor thing, with its top-heavy Down’s Syndrome head and mewling thick-tongued cries for help, nothing can stop the critics from feasting on the corpse. They wait until it’s safe, and the movie’s nice and dead, and all the other vultures have shown up so they don’t have to be the first to dive, and then frenetically type things like “Derailed goes off the tracks”. Then they laugh at their own jokes so loudly they almost drown out the little voice in the back of their head perpetually lamenting the fact that they got a degree in Film Studies instead of Film Production.

Poor kid. Almost cute enough to not eat. Almost.

Sadly enough, Derailed does exist, for a purpose other than to work the title into stupid Arts & Entertainment section headlines. The purpose is apparently to try and confuse members of the audience who have never seen a movie before with elaborate twists and turns that are only predictable if you’re paying attention, which you probably won’t be the minute Jennifer Aniston shows up. Aniston succeeds only in not being Rachel from Friends; the rest of her character is generic, uninteresting, and average. I suppose there’s something to be said for the fact that most people are generic and average, or else it wouldn’t be the average, but since the basis of this film is a romance, it’s necessary that at least one of the parties involved is appealing. Especially if the other party is a grizzled Englishman who perpetually looks like he’s on day two of a four day drunk. Aniston plays a married woman who starts an affair with equally married Clive Owen, a mean-looking fellow two steps to the left of a soccer hooligan. On their first date, they’re attacked by Vincent Cassel, a refuge from French action films looking to follow the path from stock film foreigner to kung-fu B-movie co-star blazed by Christopher Lambert. Intrigue, blackmail, and several bad rappers follow, none of which were very effective and doing anything but making me check my watch, and check this movie off of my list of possible fake movie titles.

9 Comments:

Anonymous Je Suis said...

The thing is, Ash, your reviews are so damn complete. There's very little left to say after you parse even Down's Syndrome in a movie review. You're achieving levels of goodness which us regulars can't really hope to attain, dammit. Also, I am going to watch this film. It looks like a garbage film, but I am still going to watch it because Clive Owen is like a god to me after that Second Sight hoopla on the BBC. I only watched Sin City because he was in it. And because I was bored and neglected to consider suicide as an entertainment option.

2:54 AM  
Anonymous Je Suis said...

I even watched I'll Sleep When I'm Dead. I wonder when the director will finish that movie?

2:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

On a completely unrelated topic. How do you feel about Beast looking like a vampiric smurf in X-Men 3?

In case you haven't seen it here's a link to the picture,
http://www.usatoday.com/life/gallery/2005/x3/flash.htm

The trailer is also up on apple.

1:37 PM  
Blogger Ash Karreau said...

Je Suis - Thanks. Spare yourself the Derailed, or at least put it off until you're no longer a poor student, and a healthy diet has allowed you to regain your strength. I worry about you.

Anonymous - I feel kind of ill. Actually, I wouldn't feel bad if he looked like a vampiric smurf. Instead, he looks like a guy in blue make-up, which is much worse. I fear the trailer. I haven't watched it yet, and I'm trying to avoid it until I can see it on the big screen, but I don't think I can hold out much longer.

3:06 PM  
Anonymous lefetichiste said...

i for one would not like to see Down's Syndrome children get eaten by vultures. until after i go down on them and/or blow rasberries on their ass cheeks.

we all have our fetishes? fetishi?

and i've come to the conclusion that clive owen is nothing more than an ogre. seeing shrek turn into him in the sequel convinced me of this.

no?
N.

11:06 PM  
Blogger Ash Karreau said...

You go down on Down's Syndrome kids? Eew. I make them go down on me. That's the Christian way.

That is an interesting observation about Clive Owen's ogreness. And it explains his boorish behaviour in Closer.

11:00 PM  
Anonymous lefetichiste said...

masochists like myself go down on the autistic and asexual also. but my one limit: vagina. blame the faggot in me but alien flower terrifies me.

regardless of how much either of them irk me, one MUST admit jude laws cum most definitely tastes alot sweeter than clive owens. but julia roberts to be the one to figure this out?

BLASPHEMY.

by the bye, you responding to my comment kinda/sorta makes me feel like i'm fuckin a celebrity. pee on me a little?
N.

1:39 PM  
Blogger Ash Karreau said...

OK, but only piss. I just finished taking a dump on Aeon Flux, so no Cleveland Steamer for you.

2:43 PM  
Blogger Sam Kahn said...

As far as the X3 trailer goes, all I can really say is it's very bland. Feels like X3 is going to feel like the Fantastic Four movie.

9:25 PM  

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