Saturday, May 19, 2007

God Bless HBO

Oh my GOD. So I just saw my new favorite terrible movie. It's very new, so you may not have had the chance to see it yet, but the next time you see Running Scared on the HBO schedule, park your ass. You won't regret it.

Paul Walker plays this unbelievably over-the-top rageaholic husband, father, and petty mob thug. He and his family live next door to this Russian family, the step-father of which is also an unbelievably over-the-top regeaholic thug for the Russian mob. And his step-son is played by uber-creepy kid actor Cameron Bright. Russian step-dad is a wife-beater, so Cameron Bright shoots him in the shoulder, with a gun he nicked from Paul Walker's garage, because he and Paul Walker's kid are best friends. The gun was used by Paul Walker's mob buddy in the murder of a crooked cop, so Paul Walker has to track down Cameron Bright -- who's now on the run -- and get rid of the gun. And that's not even the half of it!

Other reasons you need to see this movie:

--It's so terrible! How is Paul Walker solving this entire thing so quickly? He's like MacGyver, if MacGyver had the short temper of one of the zombies from 28 Days Later. It's a completely ridiculous character, though I will say Paul Walker works his (bare) ass off to sell it. You wouldn't think he could be believable as a scumbaggy tough guy ragewad, and yet he kind of is. Almost all of the acting is STUPENDOUSLY over-the-top, as are each and every plot twist. It's incredible. It's like halfway through production they realized this movie would be for shit, so they decided to just crank up the volume and see what happened. Thank God they did.

--Paul Walker's character is named "Joey Gazelle." Because he is RUNNING! RUNNING SCARED! AHHHHHHH!

-- There's a twist at the end of the movie that essentially negates the entire point of the movie itself. Awesome.

-- Former MTV VJ Idalis Leon plays a hooker who holds a pharmacist at gunpoint in order to retrieve an inhaler for the kid who saved her from a beating by her pimp.

-- At one point, Cameron Bright encounters a homeless person who looks like the First Slayer and speaks in ethereal whispers. Later on, he is menaced by the shadow of what looks like Freddy Kreuger. My theory is that Cameron Bright's inherent creepiness pulls all laws of logic and reality off its bearings whenever he's around.

-- Elizabeth Mitchell and Bruce Altman show up in the middle of the movie, out of nowhere, for a tangential sub-plot so out of context and unbelievably sinister that I halfway expected it to turn out to be a hallucination.

--Vera Farmiga, as Paul Walker's wife, gives a no-fooling honest-to-God great performance. She's definitely the coolest thing in the movie.

--There is a torture scene involving a hockey player -- in full uniform! -- shooting pucks at full speed into a character's face. Read that sentence again. And the whole rink is black-lit! I felt like I'd accidentally taken acid. It immediately tops the list of Most Improbable And Oddly Ridiculous Scene On Ice Skates, beating out Geena Davis's shoot-em-up-on-skates rampage from The Long Kiss Goodnight, an awesome bad movie in its own right.

Seriously. Watch this movie. Pop some popcorn, invite your friends over, have a good laugh, and behold the awesome power of a movie that stopped caring whether it made any sense long ago. I could kiss you, HBO.


mathan said...

Joe, don't tell Senor Bootleg, but you have my favorite blog.

I was half-watching this flick a month ago I was pretty much on the same page as you.

Though I didn't know that former MTV VJ Idalis. Good look on that.

Anonymous said...

Here I was, all set to say, "Why yes, I've seen Running Scared," but apparently I've seen the wrong one: Running Scared (1986). (Not a terrible movie, BTW.) Oh well.