MY BIGGEST CINEMATIC DISAPOINTMENTS
I don’t know about you, but I can usually find something to like in most things. I can forgive little things here and there in films, justifying that, maybe I wouldn’t have done it that way, but as a whole, the film was watch-able. There are not many films that I walk away from filled with hatred and disgust. There are a few though. As I go to the cinema weekly, I get to see a lot of films, but these next films, well, they are the worst (or best) examples of disappointments that I have experienced in a theatre. Most of these are for personal reasons, but all left me gutted as I walked out of the screen, hatred and disgust, seeping out of every pore. Sounds pathetic? Well, it’s only because I care so much, that I allow myself to become so disappointed, and I’m sure we have all felt the same kind of thing at some point. So read on to find out what films I wanted to walk out of, what films I could barely keep from loudly booing. Let the hate commence.
Alexander the Great is my favourite bloke in all of history. I studied him at university, he is a personal hero of mine, he was the greatest general to have ever lived, never lost a battle, was a legendary hero in a very real world. To say I was looking forward to this is an understatement the size of the Macedonian Empire. I sat there waiting to be wowed by the tails of my favourite ancient hero, and within twenty minutes, I wanted to run away and hide. I just hated it, I don’t know whether it was the editing, the rushed nature of the battle scenes, the Irish accents that the Macedonians had, or all of the above and more. I just knew that I was watching a film about this great man, and it was sullying his good name, at least in my eyes. I walked out of the film in a stinking mood, perhaps I was too close to the subject matter, that I had a vision in my head of an Alexander the Great Film, and this was certainly not it. I have subsequently watched the Directors Cut, and it is much better, but it can’t quite wash the sour taste out of my mouth of the film I saw at the cinema. There is a great Alexander film to be made, and one day I will see it, hopefully.
The amount I was looking forward to a third Spider-Man film was incalculable by mere words. I had loved Spider-Man 1 & 2, they were awesome films, bringing the seemingly impossible to the screen. My brother, a huge Spidey fan, my best friend and I went to the first showing, buzzing with excitement, and very much looking forward to seeing Venom on screen. Things were OK for about an hour, and then, well, it all fell apart in front of our eyes. Topher Grace was never going to be a good Eddie Brock, or a good anything, in anything, but I didn’t hate him at first, that was to change quickly. Venom was botched, Sandman was ret-conned to be the man who killed Uncle Ben, Peter Parker had become a walking, dancing ‘dig on this’ emo nightmare. The film was rushed, too crowded and just not up to the high standards of the first two. All three of us walked out of the cinema with a heavy heart, it had destroyed us to hate a Spider-Man film. That wasn’t supposed to happen, we were supposed to be elated, talking about our favourite parts, reliving the good bits. Instead we made our way solemnly to the car and went home. I don’t think we even said more than ten words to each other.
CLASH OF THE TITANS
Harryhausen was my bread and butter growing up. I had watched the original Clash of the Titans so much when I was young, the tape broke. I don’t tend to think that remakes are necessarily a bad thing, and so when a new Clash was announced, my excitement level was high. What would modern day Harryhausens be able to conjure up on a computer and put on a cinema screen? 3D was a big factor, but I heard it wasn’t too good in the film, and so, opening weekend, I sat in a normal 2D screening, ready to be blown away…. Two films on, I’m still waiting. Clash was abhorrent. Sam ‘G’day mate’ Worthington, is not meant to play ancient heroes. The story was a pale comparison to the original, and the monsters were not half as exciting, or magical. I wanted to punch the person in front of me, just to release some hatred, but instead, it slowly built over two hours until it was at a fever pitch. I left as soon as the credits rolled, I had to be out of there, I couldn’t stand it any more. Having not seen it since, I can’t really remember what I hated so much about it now, and believe me, I don’t fancy re watching it in order to remind myself. I just know I hated almost every second of it, and hated the preceding second twice as much as the previous. I still went to watch Wrath of the Titans, and I was slightly less disappointed by the sequel, but only by an amount that could be measured by a super powerful calculator.
HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF BLOOD PRINCE
I was initially sceptical about the whole Harry Potter phenomenon. I didn’t want to watch a ‘baby’ film, and Lord Of The Rings was so much better. I soon changed my mind when a girl dragged me to see the first Harry Potter. Although LOTR was superior, I loved Harry Potter, and was at all the opening day screenings of all the films from then on, and of course, devoured the books. It was all going so swimmingly, until Half Blood Prince. I was so bored during this film, I fell asleep, twice. I don’t understand what went wrong. The scene that was most important to the story was botched beyond all recognition (clue: it involved the death of a beloved character), and the film was quite simply, depressing. Thins didn’t get much better in the next film either, but kicked it up about 20 gears for the final film. Admittedly, the book is a bit of a chore too, but I just didn’t connect with this film. Walking out of it, I was majorly disappointed, to a degree I never expected from the Harry Potter franchise. I guess it’s not the worst film ever made, but high expectations can lead to crushing failures. I expected too much perhaps, and was served something less than spectacular. I didn’t enjoy this film at all, and I so wanted to, so very much.
INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL
Raiders of the Lost Ark is in my top 2 favourite movies. I love Temple of Doom, and Last Crusade is really good. When Crystal Skull was announced, I’ll admit, I was excited, I felt no apprehension at all, perhaps foolishly, but I trusted Spielberg and Ford, not so much Lucas, to keep up to the series high standards. I also like Shia Lebeuf, and the return of Marion sounded like a good send off to the series. WOW. Was I wrong. As I sat there with a group of friends, at a midnight screening, all my joy and hope seemed to be draining out of me. Ford looked old, the plot was shit, Shia Lebeuf doing a King of the Monkeys impression. The fridge getting nuked, the god-damn gophers, and stupid fucking Aliens. I tried to put a brave face on it. It wasn’t that bad was it? Was it? Yes, it was terrible, awful, a disgrace. Luckily, there are three awesome Indy films, and the fourth never needs to be watched or talked about in polite conversation. Usually I’d be all for a new Indy adventure, but maybe they need to leave him alone, Indy doesn’t need to be dug up again, he belongs in a museum, with the other works of art. I was slightly depressed for a few days after watching Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, I’m over it now of course, but I don”t wish to repeat that experience again.