Won’t Someone Please Think of the Super-Rich Schlock-Vendors For Once?

May 11, 2011


Is it possible that Hollywood is simply one giant cry for help?  That the only reason many of the films that get made do so is because there’s an industry wide attempt to get us to stop them?  You know, like a kid who announces that he’s going to go hit the side of the house with a shovel, or the person who leaves drug paraphernalia around in the subconscious hopes that someone will see it.

"One of these things is not like the others..."

So, for example, Michael Bay doesn’t really want to make these Transformers movies, it’s just that with all his previous films, no one has sat him down and said, “Michael.  Mike.  Listen, you’ve got a keen visual sense, but you’re wasting it on cleavage and explosions.  You, you, Michael, are actually dumbing down the collective intellect of the country.”  Right?  No one says anything so he escalates, until finally he says, “Okay!  I’m going to make a movie about those toys from the 80’s – the cars that turn in to robots!  They’re alive!  They’re aliens!  And it’s going to be totally serious!”


“And I’m going to make a sequel!  Two sequels!  And I’m going to make John Turturro, John Malkovich and Frances McDormand be in them!”

Still we sit by.  It’s like we don’t even care.

Naturally, there are some great things that come out of Hollywood, but certain projects are so bafflingly bad, that there’s no other rational explanation. Once we’ve eliminated the impossible (that grown adults think these are good ideas), whatever remains, however unlikely, must be the answer…

So Hollywood announces, “We’re going to make another movie of The Great Gatsby!” in the hopes that someone will say, “I don’t know, Hollywood.  You’re playing with fire there.”  We don’t.  So it gets pretty flagrant after that.

“We’re going to hire the guy who made Moulin Rouge to direct it!” Hm, we think, the movie that’s all super-saturated colors, rapid camera tricks and pop music?  To make a film of a constrained, modernist work, meditating on the death of the American dream amidst the repressed, east-coast leisure class?

What.  Sometimes that’s how we think.

We think it, but no one steps in.  Tragically, Hollywood feels no choice but to escalate again.

Stout... thickset... not beautiful... sure, that sounds right

“Um, you know Myrtle?  We’re casting Isla Fisher as Myrtle.”  Myrtle, we think.  Which one’s Myrtle?  Oh yes, the woman who’s described as “mid thirties, faintly stout, thickset figure, face isn’t beautiful.”  That Myrtle?  Isla Fisher?  That makes no sense.  Well, we figure, Hollywood has to find it’s own way.

"Hollywood, I love you, but it hurts me when you make things like 'Terminator: Salvation.'"

And still no one speaks, and finally, in desperation, Hollywood cries out, “Well, then I’m going to make the whole thing in 3D!” before silently weeping and going outside to stare at the horizon and wish someone cared.

So, Hollywood may be making unfathomable amounts of money off of these films and dumbing down the entire cutlure, but truly, who’s the real victim?  Who’s really in need of some tough love?

(p.s. – sorry for the lag time since the last post.  Sometimes, the muse, she wafts in, all sheer and billowy, whispering in your ear.  Other times, she sits on the other side of the room, eating chips, responding to your entreating pleas with, “Whaddya want from me?  It’s your God damn blog.”)


About The Byronic Man

Recently voted "The Best Humor Site in America That I, Personally, Write," The Byronic Man is sometimes fiction, but sometimes autobiography. And sometimes cultural criticism. Oh, and occasionally reviews. Okay, it's all those different things, but always humorous. Except on the occasions that it's not. Ah, geez. Look, it's a lot of things, okay? You might like it, is the point.

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6 Comments on “Won’t Someone Please Think of the Super-Rich Schlock-Vendors For Once?”

  1. Barton Clements Says:

    Hey, Byron…really nice job. It is necessary for us to speak out so that the Super-rich Schlock-vendors find some parameters within which to operate. It is a little like dealing with our government. Keep up the good work


  2. Charlotte Says:

    You know what, Byron, you’re just missing the point. Hollywood makes complete crap because it’s what people want. It’s what we all NEED. Responsibility rests squarely on the shoulders of the General Public, that perennially convenient whipping-boy for all embarrassing misdemeanours. Don’t hate them because they’re Hollywood.


  3. cassiebehle Says:

    Well done and touche. If you were going for that sinking feeling in the pit of your readers’ stomaches, consider me your first victim. I’m not sure if it’s the Great Gatsby scenario, the last comment about finding material about your blog (some days…argh), or the fact that I just ate two handfuls of Jelly Belly jellybeans, but nevertheless, something must be done! So, uh…. you wanna go first?


  4. The Good Greatsby Says:

    I’m still smarting from the miscasting of the Coppola version of Gatsby–skinny Bruce Dern as the physically imposing bully Tom Buchanan?
    Isla Fisher as Myrtle? She’s not supposed to be beautiful. She’s supposed to be interesting because of her vitality, but her looks are suspect–that’s why it’s interesting that Tom would cheat on beautiful Daisy with Myrtle.


  5. Walter Says:

    Can you run for mayor of Los Angeles please? Maybe Greatsby can be DA..?


    • Byron MacLymont Says:

      Hmmm… they let you telecommute for that job, right? Because I’ve gone to great pains to specifically not live in LA. But if the public needs me, I must heed the cal! I will campaign on the promise that I will run one of America’s largest cities from a laptop in my living room!


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