Well, the long awaited, much fretted over day was upon us. I headed to the Cinerama straight after work to meet 1 Ben Dur and get in line. I am that much of a geek. However, since Ben and I were the first to arrive, we decided to lay low in his car until a line began to form. This is after I got a dirty look and an eye roll from the girl at the ticket counter. Hello, Cinerama employees. Do you know where you work?
Anywho, Ben and I pulled out our towels and waited. People began to trickle in, many dressed in bathrobes, many more with towels. This would have been fun were I not so damned nervous.
We got our seats in the balcony, which I will never sit in again. I didn't realise that they are designed for people over 6 feet, as there is a giant bar right at my eye level. So I knelt on my feet and prepared for the movie. I was hoping for a Serenity trailer but instead got “Monster in Law” and “Herbie: Fully Loaded”. Interesting demographic.
Spoilers contained herein.
The movie started and I was genuinely excited. I loved the dolphin musical number. I loved Martin Freeman as Arthur straight away. I also loved Mos Def as Ford and immediately forgot about the accent. He was perfectly awkward and quirky.
When the Earth blew up, I got chills. Fantastic. But they started hammering home the love story hooplah from the word go (a camera phone picture? Come on! Arthur is NOT that sentimental). I'll just go on the record right now and say that not only is Trillian not the love of Arthur's life (it's Fenchurch, as annoying as she was at times), but that the whole idea that Arthur would fall in love with some girl he met once at a party and harbor “feelings” for her after all these years is ridiculous. Furthermore, it's directly in opposition to the character of Arthur who is presumably so level-headed that he would never suspect his best mate to be an Alien. So un-romantic that it took him ages to work up the courage to do anything heroic. This is not a man who would hold out hope for a fleeting crush. If anything, Arthur's fixation on that party was more the fact that his manhood was called into question by Zaphod than a love-at-first-site situation.
As for Zaphod, well, I was TOTALLY buying Sam Rockwell’s performance…until that fucking second head popped up and I realized I would have rather had them have NO second head than do what they did. That flip top, Pez Dispenser thing looked cheap and was very distracting. That moment where chaos breaks out on the Heart of Gold and Zaphod runs around like an idiot with his head popping up and saying things is so horrible. Once he had the head removed, I could deal with Zaphod again.
The Humma Kavula episode was boring and contrived. I know they said Douglas Adams wrote this part himself but I can’t help but think that what he wrote was vastly changed post-mortem.
That strange woman who was in love with Zaphod was also boring and contrived.
Bill Nighy as Slartibartfast was probably one of my favorite parts. He was perfect and he reminded me of Jennifer Saunders from AbFab which was a take on that character that I never would have thought of.
Alan Rickman as Marvin was aight. Marvin just didn’t have much to do is all.
The ending made me want to vomit.
All in all, and I’ve thought about this quite a lot, the movie wasn’t as bad as it could have been. But it also wasn’t nearly as good as it could have been. I know that they had a lot of pressure to cater to the fans and also to a new audience, but unlike Peter Jackson, they chose the wrong things to take away from the story, leaving it an empty shell of a film. I realized after my post-film drinking binge, that most of my favorite parts of the story are Douglas Adam’s little philosophical tangents. I love how he dis-proves the existence of God. I love the bit about the 3-breasted whore. I love all the stuff about Ford’s past and how he is just basically this mooch who likes to get drunk and hang out with women. You don’t see any of that stuff in this film. I suppose, it’s to be expected because it’s a Disney film. But still, that darkness is part of Adam’s humor and, if you ask me, a very important part of the essence of the story. I don’t see how they could possibly made a decent sequel or sequels to this film without all that darkness because it only gets worse in that world for all those characters. Faye was right. Seeing this film, for me, was like seeing Fellowship of the Ring for her. It was more painful and stressful than just a fun movie-going experience. I need to see it again to solidify my thoughts because right now they are more emotional than reasonable.
And that’s all I’ll say about that. For now.
End of spoilers.
After the movie we went to the Nite Lite to drown ourselves in Journey sing-a-longs and beer. Aaaaah….
Tobe went to the vet in the morning and we learned that he has gingivitis but is otherwise fine. We also learned that when he’s nervous, he has the ability to shed his bodyweight in fur.
After that, Faye and I took naps because we were HUNG OVER. Then we finished the script that we have been working on for 3 and a half years. Hoorah!
By that point, our brains were too fried to do anything but rent “Wild Things 2”. And thank god we did. Comedy. Gold. Faye is writing a review for it as we speak.
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