This is Overrated, the final destination for venting about film on the internet. I’d like to emphasize that this column is intended to be a bit of fun and my aim isn’t to upset anybody. I love film, and don’t enjoy people who hate on people with different opinions, so please take everything here as lightly as possible!
You and I have unfinished business, Williams. Oh, this has been a long time coming. There may come a time in which it is necessary to dedicate an entire ‘Overrated’ to this man, but for now this will have to do. A former housemate of mine used to put pictures of Robin Williams up on my bedroom door to annoy me, such is my hatred of the hairy man beast and his work. I’ll admit straight off the bat that I’m a big Jumanji fan, but that is the one and only instance in which I’m willing to overlook my feelings in this matter. “In the jungle you must wait, until the dice read five or eight.” Nice.
Robin Williams spawns himself into three distinct forms. The first two are Zany Robin Williams and Serious Robin Williams (I’m including that period of time he played a whole bunch of murderous psychopaths in the latter category). The third is an exasperating mix of the two, like Patch Adams where he acts like a dumbass but usually has a poignant (read. bullshit) speech towards the end about how his antics were driven by a need to do good.
The worst part about it all is that in reality Williams is probably a perfectly reasonable fellow, which makes me feel guilty of my unbridled hatred toward everything he is and stands for. Here’s something that might lose you some sleep – Francis Ford Coppola, the man behind the masterpieces The Godfather and Apocalypse Now, directed the film Jack, a film about an 8 year old kid who looks like Robin Williams.
If only Michael Fassbender had the power of foresight, he might never have said yes to this film. I can imagine the producers spitballing ideas for 300 – “I just don’t feel that the Battle of Thermopylae, where three-hundred men defend their homeland against the entire Persian army, is compelling enough. How about we add heaps of weird deformed monster dudes and really ramp up the homo-eroticism of the whole thing?” “Nice. See? History is so much better when you disregard the facts and add deformed monster dudes. Now let’s all get drunk and play ping pong!”
Ok to be fair, I understand 300 is an extremely faithful adaptation of Frank Miller’s graphic novel of the same name, but some things just do not translate to the screen. Definitive proof that no amount of style can make up for complete lack of substance, 300 is an abhorrently shallow, bizarrely eroticized thoughtless piece of crap. I was originally going to suggest that watching 300 is like watching a friend play video games, but I don’t actually mind watching people play video games every now and then. You know you’re out of luck when a film you’ve paid money to see starts with a voiceover from David Wenham. (Wenham fans, I aint got no beef with Diver Dan, don’t worry).
Zac Snyder would later employ the same sense of style in an even more extreme fashion in the hyper-asinine Sucker Punch, a film I would advise you to steer well clear of. If the slow motion shots in Sucker Punch played in real time, it probably wouldn’t run longer than half an hour.
The universal love for Braveheart is something I will never understand, but I guess as Out of Africa can attest to, people are suckers for rousing music scores. There are some great moments in Braveheart, but the whole thing just has this reservoir of silliness I can’t shake whenever I watch it. I’ve gathered that the historical accuracy in Mel Gibson’s epic Oscar-winner is abstract at the best of times. In fact if memory serves, Braveheart suggests that William Wallace impregnated the Queen of England, insinuating that the long line of the Royal Family are really descendants of Mel Gibson…I mean Wallace.