Wednesday, October 28, 2009

LAND OF THE LOST: The Reason Why It Needed to Bomb

Watched LAND OF THE LOST 2009 a couple days ago. I feel the same way about it that I did about other TV-to-feature-reboots like Brady Bunch and Starsky & Hutch. I realize that going back to the 70's sets up for some goofy laughs just because it was in an era that time forgot, but that's always treated as the key source for jokes. Could they have made a kick-ass gritty Starsky & Hutch? Fuck yeah. They didn't though. The Brady Bunch was a little bit harder because it's about boring family with boring situations. So, the idea was to make them into a freak family somehow living in the 90s. By fuck, would rather settle for another Munsters reboot if that was the case. Hell, even the 90's remake was funnier with the right tone. Charlie's Angels does it slightly different. It takes the one joke of models becoming private detectives and turning them into superheroes. But hell, even the original Angels took their stories a little bit more seriously. At least Charlie's Angels isn't full-on parody. But that's the point. It's all about how it's perceived on the surface.

The Land of the Lost 2009 is another casualty of parodying the source material. I guess that's what the audience wants in a way. I have to say, as a comedy, it was funny. I did laugh at stuff regardless of how much they altered things. And a lot of the jokes were at the expense of many of the characters like Enik and Cha-ka, but you would have to know the original show to get them. Although, I'm kinda glad this flick bombed. It didn't just bomb, it bombed huge. They totally coulda made a serious or at least a fun adventure in the vein of Indiana Jones, but it seems they felt that their $100 mil would be best spent on a comedy. Yeah, after 14 years in development this is what they came up with--a Will Farrell vehicle. I like him enough, but shit, he's not the person I'd follow through I science fiction flick. Tim Allen in a flick called Galaxy Quest, I think so. At least he can bring a sense of urgency to the story and character no matter if it's a comedy. It's not that Ferrell can't bring drama to a role. Stranger than Fiction proved that, but it seems he just likes to fuck around with other people's time and money. "What? An adaptation of Land of the Lost? Where's my money bitch?"

The external stuff. Okay, going back to the original show will probably make most people laugh at the dated production value alone. But if you look at the stories and some of the philosophies that are embedded in most sci-fi flicks and shows, there's a lot in the first two seasons of Land of the Lost 1974. The complicated nature of why this parallel universe exits and the denizens of such creatures as Sleestaks and Pakuni run throughout the series and is totally absent from the flick. I'm guessing because it was made for a dumber audience. An audience that would seemingly be more entertained by the exterior aspects such as CG and the surface laughs of Will Ferrell. I grew up on Land of the Lost reruns and what I remember it was a smart show. In fact, I'd watched the series again recently and realized it was much smarter than I realized. The show's writing credits included Larry Niven, David Gerrold, William Keenan, Margaret Armen, Joyce Perry, hell even Walter Koenig wrote an episode. Yes, lots of Star Trek alumni. What's most interesting was that the original show was geared for kids and had such adult philosophies and the movie was envisioned for a broad, dumber audience and mostly adults. I guess dumber adults. But the interesting thing is that target audience didn't show up. So, I'm glad it bombed because it does leave me some hope that there's some brains and guts out there... somewhere. I just wish they were the ones working at the studios.

If the school of Michael Bay taught us anything, we need to be much stupider in life. That way we can enjoy ourselves a lot more. Hell, he convinced Steven Spielberg to preach his gospel.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

James Gunn's HUMANZEE! is Live on!

That's right, folks. James Gunn and company went ahead and finally got HUMANZEE! up live on While HUMANZEE! was a longtime coming, I was called in at the last minute. And I have to say this is my absolute fave of James's new media projects. When I first saw the trailer for this last fall, I thought, "Fuck! I wanna work on this one!" But I was tied up with PG-Porn, but now I'm working on it! Or worked on it. Past tense. And totally proud to present...

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