Mates, I tell you, there’s nothing quite like an infected and dislocated jaw to put a crimp in one’s plans for getting a column out. It’s been fun — on a scale of 1 to 10 with ten being the most fun, like having sex with a Power Girl cosplayer while riding the Highland Fling at Six Flags Over Mid America — my last 10 days or so has been a -20. I rolled a critical miss on my saving throw vs. spontaneous infection of already screwed up joints. But then the Lord sayeth unto Walgreens, â€œLo, I give you antibiotics and anti-inflammatory drugs big enough to choke a Clydesdale, and thou shalt sell these pharmaceuticals to the poor slob who cannot open his mouth, yea, verily, I doth possess a droll sense of humor. Ye shall know him by his blue cross, his blue shield, and his Dizzy Gillespie cheeks.â€
I saw the Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer last night. No spoiler here, but I was expecting more. I know, I probably shouldn’t have, but I actually was pretty impressed with the first one despite the bad Doom rendition. This time Doom looked better, but his dialogue was horrendous. And what was up with Alba’s face? Did she get a silicone injection in her lips or is she allergic to something on the studio snack table? She DOES need to eat, way to skinny. Attention Hollywood: curves are sexy and they DON’T have to be done with CGI (damn you George Lucas) — let these women EAT!
Speaking of summer blockbusters, it’s time to get to yours! Since I’m rather doped up I will probably keep my comments fairly brief. Today I present the All-Paul Grindhouse Double Feature!
First, our very own Paul Sebert from the Nexus’ Words of Questionable Wisdom column, ironically named as I very seldom question Paul (except for that Mary Jane statue thing, but we won’t get into that).
Jeff Ritter, you sir are a truly evil man.
Here I am over a week without a new Words of Questionable Wisdom and you just threw down a challenge that I can’t resist. Now I realize as one of the few comic fans who enjoyed both Superman Returns and The Hulk you might find my judgment dubious, however I have seen a lot of bad comic book movies (proof here at WoQW) so I think I have a decent idea of what works and doesn’t work in a comic based movie.
So without further ado here’s my pitch for a future blockbuster which will leave your GI Joe movie in the dust.
A secret government agency has transferred six of the nation’s deadliest criminals to Belle Reeve Prison, where they are given an once in a lifetime chance at freedom. In an exchange for a complete pardon they must serve for a full year on Task Force X under the supervision of Amanda Waller. Lead by Col. Rick Flag Jr., the team runs highly dangerous black ops missions which are almost guaranteed to end in heavy casualties. If anyone is killed the government will disavow any knowledge of their involvement. All members of the Squad must wear bracelets with small explosives attached that will kill them in the event they are captured or attempt to flee. For their first mission Task Force X must sneak into the country of Qurac, infiltrate the Cult of Kobra’s secret compound, and assassinate it’s leader. They’ll need their to work together to save the world from Kobra’s apocalyptic plans, but on a team made of contract killers, terrorists, and master thieves can anyone be trusted?
An R-rated action movie filled lots of plot twists, double crosses, where anyone can die at any time. I decided to combine ideas from both John Ostrander’s classic run on the title and the Task Force X episode of Justice League Unlimited. Like on the cartoon the team’s costumed identities are omitted in favor of government mandated uniforms and the word super-villain is never actually used.
Directed By Martin Campbell
Veteran director of such films as ‘Casino Royal’, ‘Vertical Limit’, and ‘Golden Eye’ Campbell not only knows how to handle special effects but is also an accomplished story teller with an eye for visual style.
Queen Latifah as Amanda Waller
Having earned an Oscar nomination for her supporting role in the movie Chicago, the first lady of hip-hop is now best known for her work in comedies like Beauty Shop. Anyone who has heard one of her rap albums however can tell you she’s the only woman on the planet with the gravitas to play the scariest woman in the DC Universe.
David Boreanaz as Rick Flagg Jr.
You know I really wanted to cast Kurt Russell in this role, but alas he like all of the great action stars of the 80s is getting pretty old. The role of the tough as nails field leader of the Squad should fit like a glove for the former star of Angel.
Danny Trejo as Deadshot
Ok I know that Floyd isn’t Mexican in the comics, but well Deadshot’s a character that’s all about attitude. Danny Trejo has played so many killers in his career as a character actor that he practically is Deadshot and is perfect for the role of a contract killer. Plus he can also do stunt work which is also a plus.
Ice T. as Bronze Tiger
The original player hater and one of the fathers of Gangster Rap Ice-T can be seen every week on Law & Order SVU. He’s also perfect for the role of a badass former street fighter who is now Rick Flagg’s personal enforcer.
Guy Pearce as Captain Boomerang
You probably know Pearce from Memento and L.A. Confidential, but he’s an amazingly versatile performer whose perhaps the only actor to have portrayed both Errol Flynn and Andy Warhol. Plus the fact he’s lived in Australia for much of his life doesn’t hurt. Here he plays the team’s most duplicitous member, a weasley bastard who’s just looking for the chance to sell out his teammates.
Sunil Shetty as Ravan
While virtually unknown in the US, Shetty has made a very successful career in Bollywood playing tough guys and villains. He also holds black belt in kickboxing and does all of his own stunts. A perfect fit for Task Force X’s resident Kali worshipping killer with a serious grudge against Kobra.
Christopher Walken as Clock King
I’m pretty sure that Temple Fugate never played a major role in the Suicide Squad comic, but the ‘The Clock King’ is one of my all-time favorite episodes of Batman The Animated Series, and I was overjoyed to hear Alan Rachins reprise the role for JLU. Anyway if there’s a role more custom made for Christopher Walken than that of an obsessive compulsive, anal-retentive master saboteur, I don’t know of one.
Liv Tyler as Nightshade
Liv Tyler sometimes actually looks like she could play the ghostly future Shadowpact member without makeup. Seriouslyâ€¦
Arnold Vosloo as Kobra
For a movie with these many morally ambiguous figures you need a seriously bad-ass villain. Arnold Vosloo is a very talented actor who looks physically imposing and has deeply threatening voice. Most famous for playing Imhotep in ‘The Mummy’ and ‘The Mummy Returns,’ Vosloo would add some serious menace to the terrorist/mad scientist/doomsday cultist intent on plunging the world into a new age of chaos.
So what do you think of my casting call, O nightmarish one?
I think that’s a pretty damn good movie. I like Queen Latifah, but can she really pull off the uberbitch that Waller is? I think she’s probably underrated as an actress, so I’d give her the chance. The rest of your casting is outstanding, but any movie with both Danny Trejo and Ice T would be an automatic must see for me, even if you were casting them in a feel good comedy like â€œ3 Men and a Glock 9â€ or â€œLook Who’s Talking To My Bitch, Yo!â€ Plus you have Walken! I’d watch a ballet about global warming and the extinction of baby seals if Walken was in it. Vosloo pretty much IS Kobra, and Guy Pierce could really explore the role of Boomer. I enjoy Guy but I don’t see him being the comic relief very often. And your director is top notch, though he seems to fly under the radar when people talk about directors. Great job, Paulie â€œWalnutsâ€ Sebert!
Quick! Intermission! Get to the concession stand! Get some cholesterol on your otherwise healthy movie snack — not the Snickers and Sno-Caps, the popcorn! That’s just gross, man! Alright, got everything? Got that bladder-buster cup of that crappy new formula Mr. Pibb? Great, let’s get back to our seats for the second part of the All-Paul Grindhouse! AND TURN THE GODDAMN CELLPHONES OFF, YOU FUCKTARDS! I mean really off, and if you open them to check the time or to text your hooker of a girlfriend who’s blowing me in the next screen over, I will smash that phone into your mouth with the white-hot fury of a thousand suns. After all, why should my mouth be the only one that doesn’t work? Get your damn foot off my seat, the show’s startingâ€¦and it’s a Paul Hensley Production!
Tired of all the Marvel and DC ideas? here’s….
WildC.A.T.S. (Covert Action Teams)
Not-so-brief synopsis: A cosmic event- the aligning of the planets or some such cliche- has led to the unearthing of an orb of infinite power… and the race is on between the remaining Kherubim- Lord Emp (posing as billionaire Jacob Marlowe), Spartan, and Zealot – and Helspont’s Daemonite allies, the Troika and mercenary members of the Coda. Needing backup in a big way, Marlowe uses Void to track down the descendants of their race… enter Warblade, Voodoo, and Maul. Add the human ex-con Grifter (our POV character, natch) as Zealot’s reluctant trainee, and you’ve got an action blockbuster (with a combination of the cartoon and comic universes for all audiences appeal).
Anthony Hopkins as Jacob Marlowe (digitally shrink him, like Gimli!)
Vin Diesel as Spartan (he’s practically a robot anyway)
Uma Thurman as Zealot (she can handle the swordplay and the attitude)
Jason Statham as Grifter (if he cans the British accent)
Sarah Michelle Gellar as Voodoo (Buffy as a stripper? High five!)
Christian Bale as Warblade (he’s got the martial arts chops and the brooding)
Michael Clarke Duncan as Maul (with some CG for the growing parts)
Rebecca Romijn as Void (duh)
James Avery as the voice of Lord Helspont (he was Shredder, dammit!)
Hugo Weaving as Dockwell (with the whole ‘agent of evil’ vibe he pulled off in Matrix)
Carrie Anne Moss as Artemis (cold, emotionless ass kickery- and an unintentional Matrix reunion!)
Directed by the king (queen?) of comic team flicks… Bryan Singer, pre-Superman Returns.
Hey! I loves me some WildStorm (even if it is now technically DC, itâ€˜s one of the 52 universes)! I never cared much for Gen-13, but everything else they do is great. Everyone should check out Gail Simone’s Welcome To Tranquility. Great stuff! As for this movie, I love the plot and like the cast but I do have a couple of questions. First, CAN Jason Statham do an American accent? He’s great in action roles, but he’s been VERY British in everything I’ve seen him in. I worry about Rebecca Romijn. She’s crazy hot and actually reasonably good as an actress (Femme Fatale was SO under-appreciated) but she’s been in at least four Marvel movies already. I’m not saying she a bad choice, but I’d hate for her to get typecast. A shrunken Anthony Hopkins — that cracks me up every time I think about it. God I hope I don’t start thinking about it when I’m in a public bathroom. Uncontrollable giggling at a urinal is such bad form. If I may make a couple of minor suggestions, I would switch Statham to Warblade and let Bale play Grifter. I wouldn’t care if Warblade had a bit of an accent, as he’s more alien anyway. Bale can pull off the cockiness and the American accent. I was going to suggest swapping the Coda roles around between Carrie Anne and Uma too, but then I realized you were talking about Artemis and not Nemesis. I think Carrie could be a really good Zealot (the more recent short-haired version) and Uma would be a nice Nemesis. Now, about Helspont, isn’t James Avery the uncle from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air? I guess that would be fine, but the name Avery stood out to me and I immediately thought of Avery Brooks, who played Commander Sisko on Deep Space Nine.
I know he could do the spooky voice, no problem. But yeah, I like it and I’d see it! Oh yeah, almost forgot, Sarah Michelle Gellar is attractive, but is she Voodoo? Here’s another Gellar you might try, Ashley Gellar (no relation, so I’m told), who I think could do the voodoo that she do, donâ€˜t you?
That’s this week’s double feature. An all-new double feature will be shown here next week. For now I’m off to pop more pills and prepare for another visit to the doctor tomorrow.
Welcome to my nightmare.