The Declarer (Floyd McWilliams' Blog)

Saturday, December 14, 2002

My wife and I just returned from seeing Harry Potter 2. I thought it was an enjoyable and well done adaptation. I was afraid that the Gilderoy Lockhart character would be dropped as he was not essential to the plot, but there he was in all his incompetent, self-seeking glory. Lucius Malfloy looked too much like a rock star, but in general I was happy with the choices made to present the movie.

However it is not enough to pay the theater $9 to see the movie; we also had to sit through the previews. By the time I was done I was afraid I would need morphine. Here, in order, is a description of the trailers. (By the way, why are they called trailers now rather than previews? Do they trail anything -- that is, are they shown at the end? I wish they were; then I could get up and walk out.)

Preview 1: Kangaroo Jack. A black boy saves a white boy from drowning. Cut to present, where the grown-up black man requests the grown-up white man to help him deliver something to Australia. They find that the package contains $50,000. I'll repeat that so you can gasp. FIFTY THOUSAND DOLLARS. In the Bay Area, that would be a down payment on a house! (Except that it would have to be split two ways, so I guess it would be TWENTY FIVE THOUSAND DOLLARS: A new Camry.)

While driving through the outback, a kangaroo steals their money and the black guy's jacket. The kangaroo can box -- just like in the cartoons -- and speaks English with an Australian accent.

Every year I think that Hollywood has put out the stupidest movies possible. Every year I am proved wrong.

Preview 2: Two Weeks Notice. Hugh Grant has such a cute smile on his face, I want to sucker-punch him. Sandra Bullock has cheekbones that, if combined with Julia Roberts' dentition, would make a scarier monster than anything in the Harry Potter movie. I assume that Two Weeks refers to the amount of time left before Bullock hits middle age.

Preview 3: I can't remember the title; why should I bother looking it up? A teenage girl (whose mother is Meg Ryan, who wears such a concerned expression that I want to sucker-punch her) goes to find her father in England. The father is rich. The other relations are snooty bitches -- but teenage girl stands up to them. Teenage girl becomes fashion model. I need to stop now, before I have a seizure. No wait, I remembered one last thing, and because I had to watch it and there was nowhere to vomit, you must share my pain. A Cute Guy tells teenage girl, "Why are you trying to fit in when you stand out?"

Preview 4: Lord of the Rings 2. (SPOILER FOLLOWS.) You would think I would enjoy this but the action was so jumbled that it was incomprehensible. Also, they gave away that Gandalf comes back to life. I know the audience is 98% Tolkien geeks, but there must be somebody who didn't feel like reading a thousand pages of elf songs and enjoyed the first movie. Why give away one of the surprises?

Preview 5: Daddy Day Care. Eddie Murphy loses his job; no shit Sherlock, what have you done in 15 years that didn't suck besides Bowfinger? (I guess I conflated real life with the movie; sorry about that.) He runs a day-care center with his friend. Mr. Mom meets, I don't know, a worse movie even than Daddy Day Care. Murphy gets the Ruthlessness in Propping up Fading Career Award for dragging toddler into door for laughs.

Preview 6: Some loathsome Disney excrement. I can't remember if it was called Frozen Walter Plots A Communist Takeover or Hawaiians with Hideous Pug Noses or Jungle Book 2.



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