Monday, September 14, 2009

Hate Crew Deathroll

While I enjoy having a good stab at someone who deserves it, this time I'm not going to. I'm going to let the below say it all. This priceless work of literary genius is all over the internet at the moment, and I'm not being sarcastic, this is the classiest response to a celebrity's slow and public mental deterioration I've ever read. It comes from some anonymous members of director Michael Bay's crew on the second movie in the 'Transformers' franchise, 'Revenge of The Fallen', and it's directed at female co-star Megan Fox. Behold.

This is an open letter to all Michael Bay fans. We are three crew members that have worked with Michael for the past ten years. Last week we read the terrible article with inflammatory, truly trashing quotes by the Ms. Fox about Michael Bay. This letter is to set a few things straight.

Yes, Megan has great eyes, a tight stomach we spray with glycerin, and an awful silly Marilyn Monroe tattoo plastered on her arm that we cover up to keep the moms happy.

Michael found this shy, inexperienced girl, plucked her out of total obscurity thus giving her the biggest shot of any young actresses' life. He told everyone around to just trust him on his choice. He granted her the starring role in Transformers, a franchise that forever changed her life; she became one of the most googled and oogled women on earth. She was famous! She was the next Angelina Jolie, hooray! Wait a minute, two of us worked with Angelina – second thought – she's no Angelina. You see, Angelia is a professional.

We know this quite intimately because we've had the tedious experience of working with the dumb-as-a-rock Megan Fox on both Transformers movies. We've spent a total of 12 months on set making these two movies.

We are in different departments; we can't give our names because sadly doing so in Hollywood could lead to being banished from future Paramount work. One of us touches Megan's panties, the other has the often shitty job of pulling Ms. Sourpants out of her trailer, while another is near the Panaflex camera that helps to memorialize the valley girl on film.

Megan has the press fooled. When we read those magazines we wish we worked with that woman. Megan knows how to work her smile for the press. Those writers should try being on set for two movies, sadly she never smiles. The cast, crew and director make Transformers a really fun and energetic set. We've traveled around the world together, so we have never understood why Megan was always such the grump of the set?

When facing the press, Megan is the queen of talking trailer trash and posing like a porn star. And yes we've had the unbearable time of watching her try to act on set, and yes, it's very cringe-able. So maybe, being a porn star in the future might be a good career option. But make-up beware, she has a paragraph tattooed to her backside (probably due her rotten childhood) — easily another 45 minutes in the chair!

So when the three of us caught wind of Ms Fox, pontificating yet again in some publication (like she actually has something interesting to say) blabbing her trash mouth about a director whom we three have grown to really like. She compared working with Michael, to “working with Hitler”. We actually don't think she knows who Hitler is by the way. But we wondered how she doesn't realize what a disgusting, fully uneducated comment this was? Well, here let's get some facts straight.

Say what you want about Michael – yes at times he can be hard, but he's also fun, and he challenges everyone for a reason – he simply wants people to bring their ‘A' game. He comes very prepared, knows exactly what he wants, involves the crew and expects everyone to follow through with his or her best, and that includes the actors. He's one of the hardest working directors out there.

He gets the best from his crews, many of whom have worked with him for 15 years. And yes, he's loyal, one of the few directors we've encountered who lowered his fee by millions to keep Transformers in the United States and California, so he could work with his own crew.

Megan says that Transformers was an unsafe set? Come on Megan, we know it is a bit more strenuous then the playground at the trailer park, but you don't insult one of the very best stunt and physical effects teams in the business! Not one person got hurt!

And who is the real Megan Fox? She is very different than the academy nominee and winning actors we've all worked around. She's as about ungracious a person as you can ever fathom. She shows little interest in the crew members around her. We work to make her look good in every way, but she's absolutely never appreciative of anyone's hard work. Never a thank you. All the crewmembers have stopped saying hi to Ms. Princess because she never says hello back. It gets tiring. Many think she just really hates the process of being an actress.

Megan has been late to the sets many times. She goes through the motions that make her exude this sense of misery. We've heard the A.D's piped over the radio that Megan won't walk from her trailer until John Turturro walks first! John's done seventy-five movies and she's made two!

Never expect Megan to attend any of the 15 or so crew parties like all the other actors have. And then there's the classless night she blew off The Royal Prince of Jordan who made a special dinner for all the actors. She doesn't know that one of the grips' daughters wanted to visit their daddy's work to meet Megan, but he wouldn't let them come because he told them “she is not nice."

The press certainly doesn't know her most famous line. On our first day in Egypt, the Egyptian government wouldn't let us shoot because of a permit problem as the actors got ready in make up at the Four Seasons Hotel. Michael tried to make the best of it; he wanted to take the cast and crew on a private tour of the famous Giza pyramids. God hold us witness, Megan said, "I can't believe Michael is fucking forcing us to go to the fucking pyramids!" I guess this is the “Hitler guy” she is referring to.

So this is the Megan Fox you don't get to see. Maybe she will learn, but we figure if she can sling insults, then she can take them too. Megan really is a thankless, classless, graceless, and shall we say unfriendly bitch. It's sad how fame can twist people, and even sadder that young girls look up to her. If only they knew who they're really looking up to.

But ‘fame' is fleeting. We, being behind the scenes, seen em' come and go. Hopefully Michael will have Megatron squish her character in the first ten minutes of Transformers 3. We can tell you that will make the crew happy!

-Loyal Transformers Crew

Simply magnificent.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Thieving From The House of God

I use a movie rating community called Criticker to rate all the movies I've seen and thereby get recommendations for movies I haven't seen based on what people who like the same ones as me think. This is similar in principle to the rating of films on sites like movie oracle IMdB, but with fewer additional features beyond rating and recommendation based on those ratings.

I've just watched the original 1974 'The Taking of Pelham One Two Three' starring Walter Matthau and Robert Shaw which has recently been remade with John Travolta and Denzel Washington. So I logged in to rate both versions as I saw the new one at the cinema a month or so ago but wanted to wait until I'd watched the original before I gave it a fair score. For those interested I gave the 1974 version 55/100 and the new one 70/100 (yes, a sequel that's better than the original) and after doing so I had a quick browse through the ratings other users have given the new one (which doesn't take that long; Criticker has far fewer users than IMdB).

What I stumbled across amongst the baseless figures (most users, myself included, rarely comment on why they have given the rating they have) is a comment from a user who is very clearly a Christian. He rated it very highly, giving it 94/100, and obviously enjoyed it, calling it "an excellent, suspensful thriller", which is perfectly accurate, but went on to say "with a strong Christian, redemptive worldview, but it is marred by a whole lot of strong foul language and some intense, very strong depicted violence where people are shot multiple times".

It doesn't have a particularly religious view at all, so this is way off the mark, but in particular, it is not a very violent movie. Many movies, intending to shock or excite, are very over-the-top with their violent depictions, but this is not one of them. It is simply realistic, showing a small number of people getting shot in desperate situations involving armed criminals. It happens every day (at least in America) and regardless of whether or not it's right or wrong (clearly wrong), it's true, and the movie has made no attempt to portray otherwise.

Reading the other reviews (9) this user has written reveals every one to have been labelled "extreme caution", including candyfloss romantic comedy 'The Proposal' for its "sexual innuendo, some near nude scenes and a mixed pagan worldview with positive references to pagan beliefs" (while still giving it 65/100) and comically 'The Stoning of Soraya M.' about an innocent wife being stoned to death in Iran, which he generalises as "what occurs all too often in some Islamic countries" while handing out a 94 rating.

And herein lies the real problem (or one of them) with fundamentalist Christians. They think everything and everyone must follow their way of thinking at all times or be damned. So, besides being an incredibly hypocritical individual who watches these thoroughly un-Christian movies under the pretence of doing so to warn others, putting himself at risk so they don't have to so to speak, like that makes a difference, he genuinely pretends to believe that every movie made should portray Christian beliefs, while rating movies that very clearly don't quite highly.

This is a guy who clearly enjoys his films, but apparently shouldn't, and so hides behind the reviews, like the writers of ridiculous websites like Kids In Mind (blatant liars who review movies with R/18 certificates pretending to be warning parents about showing these movies to their children) and Christianity Today Movies (the movie reviewing arm of Christianity Today, a Christian publication who don't want everything to conform because then they'd have nothing to bitch about), so that he can pretend he's watching them with good intentions in mind.

What is it you all think movie certificates are for? We all know they're probably too low for the content (i.e. movies rated 12A are generally too violent for a 12 year old, accompanied by a parent or not), but seriously, when you watch a movie rated 18 or R, do you honestly think some of them might conform to all of the Christian values? Do you really expect to ever be able to tell any of your readers that a film rated 18 can be watched without the slightest bit of caution? If you do, you're as delusional as the alien conspiracy theorist with the tin foil hat. But you don't do you? You know full well every highly rated movie is as likely to offend fundamentalist believers as a Catholic priest at a boarding school, but you watch anyway because you LIKE IT. Then you write your report so everyone thinks you've done it for their benefit.

The reality, it is my indescribable pleasure to inform you, is that you are no better/worse than everyone else who watches these movies and enjoys them. If it turns out watching them really is a sin and all the viewers are going to Hell, that's going to include you. You watched it and loved it. You are as culpable as everyone else. Stop pretending otherwise. You are the guy who shoots the gun then goes around telling everyone "I shot the gun, it killed someone, so be warned, guns are dangerous", before going off to test the next model.

And to the writers on the Christian movie reviewing websites who think absolutely everything in every movie is a metaphor for something from the bible, or for something entirely non-Christian in an attempt to cover their tracks: no, it isn't. Everything really isn't about you. Get over yourselves.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

It's A Wonderful Lie

In one of the most spectacularly pathetic pieces of music journalism I've seen in a long time, which given the average quality of the field is quite hard to achieve, London-based music blog Gigwise (a meaningless collection of unrevealing articles and reviews about artists everyone already know inside out) have issued their list of the top 50 Worst Albums of The Decade, topped by the UK's favourite media targets Katie Price and Peter Andre.

Of course almost all "best ever in the World" style lists compiled by any mainstream media are nonsense, usually headed by whoever is currently getting the most public attention at the time, but when you're talking about the best, having the most popular at the top, although perhaps not entirely accurate, is reasonably easy to justify on the basis that their popularity must be due in no small part to their talent.

So by the same token, it stands to reason that in the majority of cases, the least popular bands must be making the worst music? Apparently not the case as Gigwise go ahead and name 50 high-profile and wildly popular artists in their list, including Nickelback, Kaiser Chiefs, Oasis, James Blunt, Hard-Fi, Queen and Razorlight.

While some might readily agree that any or all of the artists on the list are not worth the adulation they normally receive, or that the specifically named records are not their respective best works, it seems ridiculous to claim that all 50 are worse albums than the hordes of no-talent nobodies and copycats who have tried and failed to "make it" several times over.

This list is a carefully constructed ploy to achieve two specific but closely related aims. Firstly, to garner attention by claiming genuinely widely-liked records and artists are misconceived and in reality poor; trying to suggest they are a worthy musical voice and know better than everyone else. And secondly to incite the kind of petty bickering regularly present in the comments section of most blog-based websites. To make statements so contentious that readers can't resist commenting, unwittingly clocking up the hit counter.

Right up there with estate agents advertising properties they've already sold, chain stores putting products they never had in stock in the first place in their flagship sale sections, and magazines putting the most talked-about faces on their front covers, this was a deliberate attempt to haul in the punters, and flies in the face of true journalism with such offensive disregard that it makes Rupert Murdoch look like 'X-Files' daredevil truth-finder Fox Mulder.

This would normally be where Gigwise are told they should be ashamed of themselves, but it's their total lack of shame that allowed the publication of this farce to begin with.