Thursday, June 14, 2018

"Hard To Please?"

Maybe you’ve experienced this yourselves.

Our cable package offers well over 50 feature film channels and flipping through them, way more often than I not, I can’t find anything to watch.

Does that sound familiar to you?

Not all of the offered films are recognizable as recent movie theater releases, but even those that are – I know we’re talking “individual differences” here – but I don’t want to go near them.  (Note: If you happened to like a film I dismissively breezed past, feel free to keep it to yourself.  We’re talking “collective experience” here, not “How could you hate that?”)

It is true I do not sample the movies I am rejecting as I remote my way up the spectrum.  I do not feel I need to.  Pressing my device’s “Info” button provides an adequate thumbnail description of the film, from which I can easily make my decision. 

To watch, or to see what else is on?

That is the less poetic and “life-in-the-balance” version of the question.

Join me, won’t you? As we meander our way up the dial. (“Sneak Preview”:  Anything with the word “cartel” in it and I am happily on the move.)  


Promotional Summaries That Make Me Immediately Go “Click”:

“… a groundbreaking sci-fi epic…” 

I know it’s subjective – this whole thing’ssubjective – but I like my epics, groundbreaking or otherwise, anchored comfortably in the present.  Or, even better, the past.  (An old-time studio boss famously proclaimed, “Don’t bring me anything where they write with a feather.”  Show me a feather and I am happily onboard.  Ditto for crossbows, carrier pigeons and six-shooters.)

Moving on (chronicling movies I do not want to see)…

“… a low-key drama…”

Two hours of “low-key”? Might as well call it “… a hypo-glycemic celebration…”  I am hoping to do better.

“…an outrageously funny comedy…”

That bar’s set way too high – a prescription for certain disappointment.  Or if it lives up to its hype – envy.  

“… a delightful romantic comedy…”

“Delightful” sounds promising.  But how come it only got “two stars”?  Sounds only moderately “delightful” to me.
Collective Categorization:  Any movie title including the word Halloween, Scream or Nightmare On Any Street That Sounds Safe But Actually Isn’t­– “Click.”

Rocky IV – Sorry.  That’s three Rocky’stoo late.

“… a taut political thriller…”

Okay.  Oh wait.  It’s in Spanish.

And “Thumbs down” on any movie where the protagonist “goes undercover.”  If they’re not ultimately exposed, there’s no picture.  And if theyare, I don’t want to be there when they “teach them a lesson.” 

“… a provocative cerebral horror film…”

Who are they kidding? – “Click.”

Rocky V– If I was not “biting” on Rocky Four

“Pirates of the Caribbean”

“Fool me once…”  (me, being a longtime lover of “pirate pictures.” They do not trust the “pirate genre” to hold the current audience’s attention so they augment the scenario with a pirate on drugs.)

“… stunning special effects highlight…”

means there’s no story – “Click.”

Wristcutters – A Love Story

Ha.  “Click.”

And no movies where Eddie Murphy plays a bad Cary Grant rather than a great Eddie Murphy.

“… college road trip…”

I lived at home for college. Do I really want to see what I missed?

“… a zombie extermination service…”

And I’m paying for that channel?

A Few Good Men

Awright!  I love “courtroom dramas.”  Ohhhh.  It’s almost over.

Man!  That was so close!  Okay, what else have we got?

“… a psychotic killer…”

Wow.  A three-word “move-on.”

Fast & Furious titles have me changing the channel quickly and furiously.

Seriously, have they ever made a truly first-rate “anaconda” picture?  (Or anysnake, for that matter?)

“Deborah Foreman…”– a name unfamiliar to this moviegoer – “as a teenager whose popular (totally), spoiled (to the max) and on the prowl (fer sure.)”

A literal transcription. And they really believed that would “land” me?

“… a stirring video game adaptation…”

Guys!  I’m 73!

Okay.  So here’s the craziest part.  (And you thought that was the craziest part.)

You get to the end of the channels, with still nothing to watch.  And what do you do then?  

If you’re me?

You go back to the beginning and try again.

Who knows?  Maybe I missed something.

Which it turns out I did.

“… a tribe of flesh-eating…”


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