of Dish Network:
Hey Whore, how's
the whoring? According to this week's Quote Whore:
The Little Vampire is "A halloween movie for
kids and their parents! A great time!"
Bedazzled is "a hilarious journey. Harold
Ramis does it again!"
In Lucky Numbers
"Travolta and Kudrow wow! What a team!"
Randy Shandis Enterprises. All rights fucking reserved.
Pay it Forward
"Bend over: Hollywood wants to teach us something."
There's only one thing worse than having my prostate squeezed
by barbecue tongs, and that is having those pricks in Los Angeles
presume to tell me how to live my life. Pay It Forward
is a self-satisfied Hollywood corn cob up our asses, a movie
that doesn't even try to entertain because it's too fucking busy
congratulating itself. There's nothing more offensive and repulsive
than Hollywood deciding a couple of times a year that they will
be our moral compass and explain to us what goodness is. My God,
there's more goodness in the boils on my ass than in their entire
It's Hollywood's test, really. How fucking stupid are we?
How willing are we to let the hypocritical assholes at Warner
Brothers profit by telling us to be selfless, caring people?
All the sudden Warner Brothers thinks it's Jesus, but a filthy
fucking rich Jesus who only has to preach, not do.
Haley Joel Osment (overacting again) is an eleven-year old
with absolutely no personality who takes his Social Studies teacher's
(Kevin Spacey) challenge to change the world seriously. He comes
up with the "Pay It Forward" plan, where each person
is supposed to do three big favors for three other people who
then must do three favors for others. He starts by helping a
junkie bum. Then he tries hooking up his drunk mom, Helen Hunt,
with his teacher, who has Academy-Award-Best-Actor-like burns
across his face. Finally, he tries to help a classmate who is
Because of Spacey's Oscar-buzz burn marks and Hunt's history
of heavy boozing, their relationship is tentative. The relationship
is put through all sorts of screenwriting hoops. Spacey's never
had sex, Spacey likes his routine (mostly because him saying
so gives his character a chance to make a sappy speech at the
end), Hunt's cardboard-flat stereotype of a white-trash husband
returns just long enough to give the story a beat. Meanwhile,
the bum conveniently stumbles upon a woman about to jump from
a bridge, and saves her and other "Pay it Forward"
gestures are occurring elsewhere across the country. It's a movement!
It's a fucking joke!
The biggest problem with this horseshit is Warner Brothers'
motive. They don't believe what's on the screen, but they expect
us to because they think we're a bunch of maudlin, stupid bumpkins
who willingly eat up their shit like my dog eats shit. While
the movie is supposed to move us to effect change, I haven't
heard a single fucking favor that the filmmakers have "paid
forward", except for Spacey. In an interview, he said making
the movie was his way of "paying it forward," and the
dick wasn't joking.
Oh, I see, us little people are supposed to go out and actually
do good deeds, but Hollywood's elite are allowed to substitute
getting paid to make crappy movies. Spacey's full of shit. He's
not doing this movie for any reason other than to win another
little gold statue to cram up his ass. Meanwhile, Warner Brothers
executives are creaming their jeans every time a newspaper article
reports about real people doing what the movie proposes. Why?
Not because it makes the world a better place, but because it's
free advertising and their fucking movie will make more money.
This whole air of shit-eating self-satisfaction overflows
onto the screen. It's not a story so much as a string of preachy
monologues tied together with plot contrivances that wouldn't
make it out of a junior-college screenwriting class. It's all
mechanical, not natural, one of those movies where you can feel
the director and writer pushing the "Plot Point" button
on their giant Script-o-Tron 2000 machine to get to the next
bit of preaching.
Two perfect examples are the return of Hunt's husband and
Osment's death. It's telegraphed early on that Jon Bon Jovi's
(once again completely bland) drunk husband character will return
to Hunt, and he does, right on schedule. It's gimmicky, lazy
writing used to disrupt the relationship between Hunt and Spacey
and give Spacey an opportunity to make a long, whiny speech about
being hurt. Then, presto!, as soon as Bon Jovi's not needed by
the story, he's disposed of. None of the messiness of real life
Osment's character is killed at the end, in a brutally awkward
sequence where the movie's stories are all neatly resolved. Why
does he die? Well, there's no reason other than to give the movie
a chance to crank up the maudlin. Killing a kid is the lazy cinema's
equivalent of crack cocaine: easy, cheap and dirty.
Director Mimi Leder and writer Leslie Dixon do a pretty good
job keeping the movie from getting too sappy. They root it in
working-class Las Vegas and make the characters bitter enough
to keep the story idea's basic sappiness at bay... until the
Rather than wait for awards ceremonies, this movie uses its
last twenty minutes to congratulate itself. The ending is like
"Touched by an Angel" with a bigger budget and without
that porky cow Della Reese. Leder and Dixon let down all defenses
and the movie gets swamped in the sticky, warm diarrhea of phony
good feelings. It's like the makers recapping why their movie
is so great. And Osment dying is just the movie's way of faking
its own death so it can have a funeral and let people speak about
how powerful and moving it was.
Spacey is normally a fine actor, and he's all right here,
but anytime I see a guy with a physical deformity in a "powerful"
movie I can't help but think "Oscar-bait." And that's
what this is all about. This is Spacey's Forrest Gump.
Hunt is after an statue, too, but she's dreadful. Her whole
performance is about "see how bad I can look, see how dramatic
it is for me to look like I just got hit by the ugly truck."
Her role, outside of the skanky factor, is flat. Hell, I like
a skanky-looking woman more than the next man, but only when
the skank comes from within, not as a tacked on and cheap definition
of her. Osment is a boy wonder, for sure. The wonder is how they
crammed the brain of a boring 40-year-old accountant into a kid's
body. He's good at overacting, crying and giving steely looks,
but every time he's expected to act like a kid, he's lost. One
overly long scene has him proving what a big wrestling fan he
is moves and it's like he's mimicking an adult pretending to
be a kid. It looks as fake as the wood-trim on a 1972 Gran Torino
One fucking finger for "Pay It Forward."
Technically, it's a two-finger movie, but there's no way in hell
I'll reward Hollywood's hypocrites for congratulating themselves.