of People Magazine
Hey Whore, how's
the whoring? According to this week's Quote Whore:
Mission to Mars is "Dazzling!"
is "An IPO
you don't want to miss out on!"
Erin Brockovich is "Entertaining and inspiring!"
(Okay, so her hyperbole is a little more accurate here.)
Randy Shandis Enterprises. All rights fucking reserved.
"I'm in love!"
I should tell you I am biased toward this film. You see, it stars
my future bride, Mrs. Julia Filthy (neé Roberts). I know
what you're thinking, old filthy has fallen off his rocker. No,
the truth is that unlike all those weirdos who send her rambling,
single-spaced letters, I send her very coherent single-spaced
letters, that discuss in detail how much I love her and exactly
what level of pain I am willing to endure for her.
On top of that, I have a plan. I'm not some shithead thinking
Julia Roberts will discover me in Arvada, Colorado, sitting at
home watching Judge Judy. No, I'm gonna move to California and
find out where she gets her gas. She's a rich chick, so she probably
gets full-serve, and I'm the guy that's gonna pump it for her
(get your fucking mind out of the gutter, this is my wife you're
thinking about). And, slowly, she'll see what a devilishly charming
man I am, and how I can leave my mountain of debt with my wife,
meaning I'll have no drawbacks. I'll be a refreshing change from
the typical asshole nutjob who stalks her.
Then the marriage. I know you're thinking she would never
marry me, but the current Mrs. Filthy didn't plan on marrying
me either. She didn't even know she was going to until the moment
it happened. But, a trip to Las Vegas, a bottle of Everclear
and a drive-thru chapel were all I needed to make her mine. Works
like a charm, guys.
"Erin Brockovich" strengthens the bond between me
and my movie star girlfriend. It's as good as a lawyer/court-room
drama can be, except for the 1988 classic "Court Room Gang
Bang," which scored extra points for the jury-box orgy.
Roberts is a poor-ass single mother who loses a court case
after her car is smashed by a yuppie doctor. Because she's been
so busy raising her kids, she can't find a job and pay her debts.
She demands employment from the son-of-a-bitch lawyer (Albert
Finney) she thinks blew her case.
Roberts dresses like a hoochie, much to my delight, and it
puts her at odds with her co-workers. They believe that just
because her tits are hanging out she's not a hard worker. But
she is, and she discovers some discrepancies in a real estate
deal. Pacific Gas and Electric is buying the homes of residents
of Hinkley, California, and Finney is making sure the owners
get a fair deal. In her research, Roberts finds that PG&E
is buying the homes to cover up illegal toxic waste dumping,
which has resulted in all sorts of illnesses. They've even lied
to the people about it all.
Roberts gets wrapped up in the case, and her family suffers,
including her biker boyfriend (Aaron Eckhart). She works hard
because she's finally working for a cause and getting respect.
Using her tits and her blue collar charm, Roberts gather the
needed evidence and rallies the Hinkley residents to file a massive
There are two things that make this movie so fucking good.
First is Julia Roberts. Second, and more importantly, is that
her character's a real woman, warts, tits (hooray!) and all.
It's rare that those assholes in the Land Rovers in Hollywood
give us intelligent women. So, it's pretty fucking spectacular
to see one that smart, hot-looking and believably imperfect.
Roberts is a hothead that has her own set of ethics and she stands
behind them right or wrong. Usually she's right, but when she's
wrong, it's ugly to watch her defend herself. She's like a Holden
Caulfield in a push-up bra, and that to me, friends, is the perfect
And the character has so much dignity that nobody else can
see. It's that same flinty anger I saw last week at the Tavern
when I tried to take this lady's bowl of peanuts when she wasn't
looking. She said "I may not have much, but I sure as hell
ain't letting you take my peanuts." Then she kicked me in
Anybody but Julia Roberts and this movie probably would have
been another really shitty lawyer drama about good versus evil.
I shudder at the idea of a Meg Ryan or Cameron Diaz fucking over
the working people with a cloying, unreal piece of Oscar bait.
But Roberts is so fucking perfect for this role (and my bed).
Rather than pretending to be working class, she embodies the
best aspects of it. She conveyed with beautiful economy what
it means to be marginalized and disrespected, and to expect it.
She's also the kind of girl I am going to marry. Not the kind
of girl I just want to have sex with, like Heather Graham, but
so much more than that. I want to take her home to my parents,
them go have sex with her.
This movie's funny, too, well it is for the first hour. After
that it gets a bit bogged down in drama, I laughed out loud many
times, which is more than I do in most shit that Hollywood calls
"comedy." And it's not cheap laughs, like Adam Sandler
pissing on an old person. These come from the confrontations
of real characters. Sort of like how it's a hoot whenever that
drunk downstairs chases his wife out of the house and then falls
down the steps. It's funny because the guy is such an asshole.
The script is sharp, and Finney and Roberts exchanges are reminiscent
of those old comedies where a smart man and woman go at each
other like their mouths are loaded guns. There's no unnecessary
dialog, just tight, realistic.
The movie deteriorates in the second half as it stops being
about this interesting woman and becomes a court drama. Okay,
it's better than most of the court dramas like the boring as
hell "A Civil Action," but still, there is very little
character to get involved with when it's a bunch of lawyers sitting
around a table discussing money. Plus, when the movie talks about
money, it uses it as a surrogate for respect and health. Only
in Hollywood do people believe a million bucks is as good as
respect, I guess.
I hate lawyers, especially because they refused to take my
case and sue the Westminster Pizza Haus after I cut my hand on
their "WWF Royal Rumble" pinball machine. But, I don't
think it's fair to them or us as an audience for Hollywood to
keep painting them as greedy, one-dimensional cocksuckers. I'm
sure they're assholes, but we've seen that enough, and it's a
little too easy. Finney forces some life into his character,
but the other lawyers look like the same old pinch-assed punchlines.
The normal folks in Hinkley are treated similarly. They're shown
as a bunch of dumb, good-hearted hicks caring for their kids,
not as people with conflicting needs and emotions. And that only
makes the resolution ring even more hollow.
Still, those are minor quibbles for a movie that's pretty
damn entertaining. Four Fingers for "Erin Brockovich."
Julia, come home, I love you.