As a primary parental unit, I don't get to see many grown up fillums. "Fucking diddums", I hear you snark. And rightly so. Who needs 'em? I have a ready-made solution in the form of the weekly Mark Kermode podcast which serves a dual purpose in relation to this issue. Firstly, it provides me with knowledgeable-sounding opinions for those unfortunate moments when I find myself forced into cinematic discussions with co-workers or members of the public. Secondly, it allows me to minimise any possible desire to see a movie in the first place. This works thusly: if the coiffured critic thinks the film is shit, I assume he is correct. If he thinks it's a masterpiece, then I can comfortably distrust his opinion on the basis that this is a guy who believes that 'The Big Lebowski' is not a great Cohen Brothers work. Happily, I find this to be a technique that I can apply to many aspects of my life.
Mark has been away, and I refuse to listen to his replacements, the irritating and irritatingly named Floyd and Boyd, one of whom, and who fucking cares which one, started life as the film critic for Heat magazine. And so it is that I have not heard a review of 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes'. Which would be of little note had Common Law not brought home a doovd containing said movie burnt by one of her many admirers in work. And so, needing a little sabbatical from The West Wing and lacking My Double Blind Kermodian Buffer, I sat to down to watch it.
Some people would have preferred that I had substituted the above paragraphs with the words "I recently watched 'Rise of the Planet of the Apes'." These people should fuck off back to Twitter where they belong.
I am used to everything in life being a crushing disappointment, and this simian offering was no exception. The filmmakers could easily have conspired to explore some serious social issues. Animal testing. Slavery. Coping with the degenerative disease of a well-loved parent. Instead, they remade Garfield. I'm not fucking kidding. Prepare yourself for a spoiling double bill. Man gets unusually smart pet. Pet has some minor cute adventures. Man takes pet to surprisingly attractive vet. Man woos vet. Vet inexplicably allows herself be wooed. Pet gets in scrape, is separated from man, is bondagised. Pet enlists help of other animals, causes some amusing mayhem, escapes bondage. The fucking end. But ah, you say, what of Odie? Where in Rorpota is the hilariously stupid animal who provides a foil to the unusually smart pet? That role is ably filled by an Alzheimered John Lithgow. Stupid is funny. Alzheimer's makes you stupid. Alzheimer's is funny. Non cogito, ergo sum.
I have seen three other movies this year, all within the space of a 24 hour period where someone took the children somewhere for some reason and I found myself unable to get drunk. They were 'Inception', 'True Grit' and 'Never Let Me Go'. And guess what? All pretty much Garfield. Think about it. But not too hard. Really, I see no reason to ever watch a fillum again.