a wonderful weekend, like a dream. A head cold hit me like an
anvil last week, and that usually means I'm going to feel too
dopey or muddled to write a review. Thank God for the modern pharmaceutical
industry. When my mind and nasal cavities felt like they were
stuffed with particularly prickly cotton balls, I thought my weekend
would be spent laying on the futon watching my old tapes of "Saved
by the Bell" episodes in chronological order. But that was before
I spelunkered to the back of our medicine cabinet and found an
old bottle of cold and cough medicine prescribed to some previous
tenant. It expired in 1997. Think about it, though: if good wine
gets better with time, that's probably true of old medications.
It's just those greedy fucks in the medicinal industry that want
us to throw them away. The bottle said, "Take one teaspoon a day
after a meal." Well, I was pretty sick and not exactly in the
mood for formalities, so I took two and washed them down with
some alcoholic mouthwash.
did that do the trick. I was floating, so vivid and alive. I could
feel insects on my skin I never even knew were there, and have
you ever noticed how blue the sky is? It's really a pretty deep
blue, like a dead person in ice. It only looks blue, but I could
see right through it. And I could see right through my dogs, too,
at all their ribs and organs and dinner. And my memory was so
vivid, so clear. I remember everything I saw in more color and
detail than the average eye could see. Nothing could escape the
steel trap of my alertness.
later and after drinking the rest of the bottle, I felt as well
as I ever have. I was so strong. I flipped over the sofa, just
for kicks, and then chased a stray dog all the way to the Ace
hardware. What I really wanted to do was have Mrs. Filthy tie
me up with rope so I could break free like I was supercool. She
was at Hancock Fabrics, though, setting up a new puffy paint display.
So I decided to use my new euphoria and extreme clarity on the
movies. A regular old Cold Medicine Film Festival at the Olde
Town Arvada Colorado Cinema. One admission allowed entry to unlimited
films, so many films that they began to blur together into a swirling
kaleidoscope of song, comedy, farting, explosions and teary eyes.
What a magical day of cinema, and all remembered with such clarity.
I recall most vividly is Hollywood's latest comic book adaptation,
From The Incredible Hulk to Kelly, a musical about a young
man (Eric Bana) who can sing, dance and then turn green. One spring
break on the beaches of Florida, The Incredible Hulk falls in
love with a squat mousy girl with the charisma of a supermarket
deli tray. Bana can only express his passion for her through singing
and by mindlessly busting shit up, so he does a lot of both, eventually
strangling Clarkson in an erotically-charged bedroom scene. What
a terrific movie.
As the result
of a father's scientific curiosity, a son is born with the suppressed
ability to regenerate, sing in a four-octave range and grow to
a massive size with shapeshifting pants that ensure his supergreen
genitalia are always hidden. That's okay with me. This is Bruce
Banner, aka the Incredible Hulk. When, later in life, he is accidentally
exposed to gamma rays, his suppressed ability surfaces and he
sings unbelievably beautiful pop songs. Oh, and he goes on destructive
rampages, but only when he gets angry--like whenever Kelly starts
dancing. He says, "Please don't dance. You won't like me when
dream, isn't it? To have a dark side that we can't control or
take responsibility for; one that emerges only when we're angry?
We could exact revenge, destroy, damage, sing show tunes and kill
without feeling personally responsible. Alcohol gives me all of
these capabilities except the singing one. And that's the only
one I really want.
I don't remember
why there was a science lab right at the beach, but there was,
and all the beakers keep getting sand in them. For an awfully
long time, Bana is sort of mopey because he has just broken up
with a fellow scientist he works with (Jennifer O'Connell). Actually,
he's always dead-eyed and mopey, and it makes it pretty hard to
distinguish him from the other teenagers on the beach. Now that
I think about it, everyone's mopey and humorless and way too fucking
serious for a movie about a guy that turns green. It seems the
only time Bana is happy is when he has some bubbly pop song on
the tip of his tongue, gritty sand between his toes and a mop
of curly hair on his head.
is exposed to gamma rays and able to turn into the Incredible
Hulk, scientists want to get their hands on him. So does his crazy
father (Nick Nolte as Kris Kristofferson), who wants to see the
fruition of his labor many years before. The scientists want to
capture him and analyze his beautiful voice, believing that by
signing him to a restrictive, exclusive contract, they can make
enough selling off his records to pay for their secret wars against
But Bana wants
nothing more than to sweep the dopey Clarkson off her feet. He
cares not a whit for these army generals and stereotypical greedy
defense contractors trying to capture him. He just wants to kiss
Kelly. If only his friends--and her friends--would let him. There
are naysayers and obstacles everywhere trying to keep these two
young lovers apart. When Bana's free-wheeling friends corner him
on the beach and warn him away through song, he goes apeshit.
Suddenly, we have the Incredible Hulk ruining Spring Break for
all the fresh-faced kids. He jumps on top of the hot dog stand
and tears its roof off. He disembowels the cook and makes his
friends eat it. Then he leaps into the ocean, and battles a giant
squid. This is right before the army shows up and he stuffs all
the soliders heads up the asses of these beach volleyball players.
Then he goes back out into the water and beats the hell out of
a shark. Before he is done, the Incredible Hulk humps an inflatable
boat and sings an aria from "Pagliaci". Oddly, rather than scare
away Clarkson, it turns her on. She loves the Hulk's hot new bod.
Then, I think
I went into a cough-syrup induced stupor. I remember everything
about Kelly and Hulk clearly up to the point that I started dreaming.
I dreamt that Bana's father inexplicably turned into a mass of
energy who took the shape of water, stone or whatever he wanted.
I dreamt this was for no clear reason other than to have a big
climactic battle that was as silly and retarded as imaginable.
Then I dreamt that the scene was over as quickly and arbitrarily
as it started. It must have been a dream because it was so fucking
I woke up to see Kelly and Hulk together, singing and dancing
on the beach. Dancing? Arrrggghhh!! Hulk no like when Kelly dance.
He goes crazy and busts her in two, shredding the ample meat from
her spine and throwing her skull into the ocean. Is she dead?
We'll have to wait for the sequel.
for all the singing, dancing and destruction, this sure was one
hell of a boring movie. It took itself so fucking seriously. It's
a goddamn comic book, right? Why's everyone so moody? Are the
filmmakers embarrassed? I would be. It's like they are trying
to scientifically legitimize and rationalize the possibility of
a man'stransformation into the Hulk. But who gives a fuck? Anyone
who sees this movie goes in knowing it's fantasy. People are willing
to buy into this shit without it being explained satisfactorily,
mainly because it can't possibly be true? It's just too fucking
And why doesn't
Kelly Clarkson get some sort of superpower? Other than those thighs?
I mean, if Hulk can smash shit up and sing, why can't Clarkson,
at the least, carry a tune? Or maybe the power to act? That would
Lee blends the singing and beach scenes into From The Incredible
Hulk to Kelly beautifully, and there is no doubt the Hulk
has a breathtaking voice when he sings "You are the Wind Beneath
My Wings" while smashing a poodle against an SUV's hood. When
Kelly performs "RESPECT" while Hulk savages her on the jetty,
it's nothing short of touching. But why is Lee so defensive?
structure is terrible. While the story tries to make these flat-as-board
comic book characters deep, it undermines them with actions that
strip away any credibility theyíve garnered. For example, O'Connell
doesn't like or trust her father and knows he doesn't have her
best interests at heart. One scene after a fight with him about
his evil intentions for the Hulk, she calls him and asks for help
with him. Of course, this puts the Hulk in the army's hands, which
the plot wants. But at the same time, it makes O'Connell look
like a massive dipshit.
looks nice, although, for all the weak attempts to make him human,
the Hulk looks really fucking fake. He looks like a Pixar character
wandered onto the soundstage. And Kelly looks even more fake.
Is that her real stomach? Was there no technology to fix her hair?
Lee keeps splitting the screen and chopping it up like the page
of a comic book. I have no fucking clue why. I guess it's so the
audience can say, "Look, it looks like a comic book!" But for
all the slicing and dicing, it actually adds zero to the storytelling.
From the Incredible Hulk to Kelly Two Fingers.I look forward
to a sequel, mostly because I want to know if Kelly and Hulk will
have babies. And will the babies sing pretty, too? Mostly, though,
I look forward to another cold.
to tell Filthy Something