One man's attempt at literacy

Category Archives: Movies

Yesterday I watched Pretty in Pink for the first time. I felt like I had to make a post about it — specifically, how I don’t get Hollywood depictions of high school. Or maybe I just don’t get anyone’s portrayal of high school because, deep down, I am an old person.

Luckily for me, Molly Ringwald is overtly old on the inside and still gets two men fighting over her, even though both the guys are total wangs.

In Pretty in Pink, as with so many movies, there seem to be two categories everyone falls into: the popular, rich kids/jocks and everyone else. While the popular kids thrive in high school, the other groups — whether they be the nerds, the outcasts, the goths, the stoners, or the spastic creepy stalker guys (I’m looking at you, Jon Cryer) — lament high school and view it’s end as the beginning of their real lives. In fact, the de facto law in these movies is that the more a character likes high school the less you should care about them, and the more you should assume they will become unsuccessful, unfulfilled, and alcoholic after.

Because that’s how real life works, you know!

Whether it be in Pretty in Pink, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Easy A, or any other teenage movie, everyone is amazingly polarized in high school; they either despise it or despise the fact that one day it will end. But, and maybe I am the only person in the world who felt this way, I was incredibly apathetic about high school.

In fact, my high school experience is most accurately described as boring as hell.

I may look like this, but I still can feel love!!! Note: not actually me…

I didn’t really have any love interests in high school, to start. No guy or girl holding a boombox outside my window — which is probably okay, because that might’ve made me roll my eyes so hard they got stuck. While love was indeed on my mind in high school, I had a perpetual haze of awkwardness that prevented anyone from actually realizing I was indeed capable of romantic feelings.

Secondly, I didn’t really belong to a clique: I was far from popular, but I was also not entirely unpopular. There were many people that didn’t like me, but they never harangued me for it, probably because they could sense that I would only have flatly stared at them for saying anything of that nature. As far as being noticed goes, I actually had a lot of people know my name and approach me after high school, which is generally pretty awkward because the conversation goes a little something like:

Some Person: Oh! Greg, it’s you!!

Me: (flailing about, looking for Some Person) Huh? Yes?

Some Person: (making to shake my hand or hug me) It’s so great to see you! You look so good, you’ve lost weight!

Me: Oh, yes, hi… You!

And then I pretend I know who they are.

Really, it just comes down to the fact that my high school was not nearly as interesting as the high schools in this movie. Unlike in Ferris Bueller, we didn’t have a Dean of Students who obsessively tracked kids he suspected of playing hooky. There were no students being picked up and put in dumpsters or being taped to walls. And am I alone in that, unlike multiple times in Pretty in Pink, no student was able to just start smoking a cigarette in the middle of school without any teacher noticing or caring?

My experience with students was just as different as my experience in general. In movies, the popular kids all fit into two categories: rich or jocks. If they’re rich they’re morally reprehensible, and if they’re jocks they’re morally reprehensible AND they have no brains. In my high school there were people with money or who played sports and they happened to have morals AND brains, sometimes. Gasp! Shock! My high school was so iconoclastic! That, or high school movies are bullshit.

And on the subject of the people who aren’t popular — well, first off, my school never had a popular clique. Not really. We just had cliques of all sorts, and people were fine with interacting with each other regardless, though of course there was still some teenage drama — but on the subject of the “unpopular” kids, I think I need to point out that unpopular kids sometimes were jerks. In fact, often they were. And the ones that weren’t jerks weren’t always amazingly smart or kind, they were just kind of unpopular because, like me, they didn’t really care about stuff at that point. Most importantly when discussing these kids, I have to say; no one is really as witty as the witty, unpopular kids in these movies. Or that inventive. Even genius teenagers don’t have the emotional and mental maturity of, say, Ferris Bueller, because being a teenager is kind of like being insane, what with the hormonal bombardment your body is undergoing.

The high school movie I most connect with is Napoleon Dynamite because I was bored the entire time.

Watching movies like Pretty in Pink are always a confusing ordeal for me because the biggest message that comes across in them is that you should either love or hate high school (with, of course, some moments of the opposite feeling mixed in there regardless). If you love high school, you’re supposed to be worried — at least, in the minds of the writers — that after high school you’ll have already lived the best days of your life, and if you hated it you should be happy because the moment you go to college or get a real job, your life will dramatically improve and you will finally be able to figure out who you are as a person. Not only does that not sound at all like my experience, as someone who thought high school was generally “meh”, but it begs the question; isn’t that really depressing? Either way, high school is depicted as this defining period, where you either succeed but begin your downfall, or you struggle but can look forward to things vastly improving the moment it ends.

Am I the only one who didn’t really care about high school one way or another?


Awhile ago, they announced yet another reboot of a franchise I loved as a kid: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. And I was pretty thrilled. Growing up, I loved the show, and the games, and gosh darn it if I didn’t view Donatello, the nerdy one with the purple bandana, as my hero.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles totally owned by Nick and such, cowabunga!

These are not the turtles you’re looking for.

Then I found out it was going to be directed by Michael Bay, responsible for the Transformers movies, which I can fondly say may very well be the worst blockbuster franchise ever. As you could guess, my thrill was replaced with irritation, dread, and a bit of throw up.

Shortly after it was announced that Michael Bay was to direct it, he joyously said, “Oh, and by the by, they’re going to be aliens, lol!” The fan base of the show was not super pleased.

Then something magical happened: the movie was put on indefinite hiatus. There’s a funny thing about that term: in America, we seem to think “indefinite” means “forever.” Indefinite means, you know, not definite. As in we have no idea how long it’ll last.

Prepare for trouble / And make it double! / Michael! / Megan! / Blast off!!!

Alas, the connotation “forever” would have been very welcome in this instance, but it was not true; a few short months after this, TMNATMT returned to life, and with more bad news: Megan Fox was going to star in it. All of this comes together to mean that TMNATMT will truly be the worst movie ever — just as Vampire High was the worst show ever — for three specific reasons:

1) Michael Bay: Michael Bay is terrible. Let’s just admit this. He has an unhealthy alien fetish, blows up anything in a franchise resembling intelligence, thinks any movie under two and a half hours isn’t worth it, and somehow managed to make Transformers and Battleship seem even more ridiculous than they were. I mean, Transformers was about robots turning into cars and he made it worse.

That, dearest readers, is a pretty terrifying set of skills.

Property of Movie Web and such

“Grr, I is alien mutantz!!!”

2) Aliens and Robots: Yep, aliens and robots. Michael Bay loves aliens and robots, so now the turtles won’t be mutants, they’ll be aliens, which (GASP!) are indeed different things. At best they will be alien mutants, which seems just a little like overkill, right? That’s like vampire zombies: sure they could potentially exist, but their existence in cinema really wouldn’t improve the quality of, um, anything.

As far as robots go, since Michael Bay added robot aliens into Battleship, which was originally a game about two warring navies — and the robots had a strong resemblance to Transformers — my great worry is that Shredder is going to be a robot. He’s going to be a f***ing Transformers-style alien robot. His new name will be Shred-Tron.

I will eat your childhood.

3) Megan Fox: You know, Megan Fox, who was fired from Transformers 3 by Michael Bay because she is apparently such an arrogant wench? Megan Fox, who is considered to be the runner up to Kristin Stewart in the overpaid, emotionless trollop awards? Yep, she’s going to help make sure this dismal movie is truly abysmal. Megan Fox is, in short, the Michael Bay of actors.

Maybe it’s just me, but seeing Megan Fox straddling an anthropomorphic, alien-mutant turtle man — and it will happen in the movie, mark my words– will not make my life any better.

________________

Michael Bay has been systemically, retroactively ruining my childhood for years. He does this by reminding me of the things I loved, magnifying everything bad about them, and then shoving a stick of dynamite up the proverbial orifice of anything that was actually good about them.

The worst part about TMNATMT is that it will be a huge success, if for no other reason than Michael Bay has broken records on the amount of product placement in his movies. This means there will probably be two sequels, perhaps titled Shredder’s Revenge and Revenging of Shred-Tron 3.0. Vampire High at least had the decency to end very, very quickly after people acknowledged it was awful.

And after TMNATMT is done, what’ll he destroy next? My prediction: Candy Land. Princess Lollipop, played by Megan Fox, will be an alien who battles giant, transforming robots with the help of her mechanical candy grenades so that they don’t steal the power source from Gumdrop Mountain.

Owned by Hasbro and such

You’re next!!!


In my continuing series of terrible movie ideas I bring you my second Christmas movie, and the weirdest of the four I will bring you. It is, however, also a very realistic plot, as evidenced by shows like Ticked-Off Trannies with Knives, which I will admit I watched half of. For those you you who enjoy the stranger, gay-touch, I present:

Christmas is a Drag

Christmas is a Drag is a fabulous new movie starring drag superstar and she-legend, RuPaul. In this adventure, Ru is joined by two freshman draglebrities, Rich Sommer (Mad Men) and BD Wong (Law and Order: SVU), to save Christmas from the evil Santa Bear and his army of beauty-stealing Christmas cubs.

Ru has just returned from a whirlwind modeling and singing journey around the world to sher’s girls, Sasha Lamorr (Rich Sommer), a shy, big-boned drag queen who just wants to find her knight in shining armor, and Nina Fierce (BD Wong), a sassy drag queen with a little too much attitude but all the right moves. When the girls are attacked early Christmas Eve by a group of scary, hairy Christmas cubs, they learn that the most glamorous of holidays is in danger from dirty, old Santa Bear, who wants to steal the beauty from the season and ruin it for all the little ladyboys.

This is the closest thing I could get to an evil Santa Bear that wasn’t actually an animal.

As with all things drag, Christmas is a Drag is a wild ride, with plenty of puns and glitter to appease the most dour of divas. “Tuck” yourselves in this holiday and get ready for an unforgettable ruventure.


Owned by Sony, YO!

With great terrible movie making skills comes great responsibility.

Dearest readers, today it’s time for the second installment of the best worst Christmas movies ever. Last week was iChuanukah, a movie starring Lena Dunham and Andrew Garfield as two adolescents who discover love and adulthood through eight miraculous days of cellphone life.

Today, I change gears to a story of Christmas and family; a tale that could truly be a Christmas classic, jingling all the way down the annals of history. In fact, when I jokingly described this plot to my friends a week ago, they looked at each other and then at me blankly and said in unison, “Wait… Is that a real movie?” Clearly, if I had a superpower it’d be my ability to make awful movie plots in moments. I now present:

Black Christmas Continue reading


Mmm, head cheese.

In the spirit of the holidays, over the next three weeks I am bringing you, my sparse readership, a gift. A gift that will linger in your minds far longer than any other gift I would’ve given you would (for the record, alternate gift ideas included head cheese and whatever has been growing in my closet). That’s right: four — you read correctly, four!!! — of my famous movie ideas* to enjoy in the privacy of wherever you’re reading this from.

*All famous movie ideas copyright Relatively Awesome Productions, Est. 2023. Stealing any of said ideas will result in punishment as seen fit by the Honorable Justice Gregory. Continue reading


Well, folks, it’s that time of year again: it’s getting a bit colder, a bit snowier (or, you know, just greyer in New York), and college students are coming up with creative places to hang mistletoe. I myself have started to celebrate by moving away from my normal litany of awful shows and onto shows in what might be one of the worst genres to have ever existed (the only genre that’s worse that I can think of  is “Paranormal Teen Romance Novels”): Romantic Comedy Holiday Movies, often made by ABC Family. To give you an idea of how terrible this is, just consider that I have started about 12 of these movies and only got close to finishing three because they are just so, so horror-inducing.

What a dumb couple

I wish I had a dead girl to give me life advice…

The gem of the movies so far has been Christmas Cupid, which is just such a wonderful mix of stupidity and outright offensiveness that you can’t possibly watch it without some sort of ire burning inside of you like a freshly lit fireplace by the end. The premise of this movie is simple: a woman who has always put her career doing PR first is visited by three boyfriends of Christmas (Ex-mas, get it? GET IT?!) who tell her how she’s romantically stupid and what will happen if this continues. Her spiritual guide, the titled Christmas Cupid, is actually a hussy, diva, and former client who died while clubbing by choking on an olive. Continue reading


I know this may be surprising, but I have a confession today: I’m a pansy. A big pansy. No, I’m not talking about my sexuality (besides, posts on sexuality are just so blasé!), I’m talking about the fact that I am afraid of everything.

Do you remember the scene where the gremlin melted after getting wet? If that didn’t make you poop yourself when you were three then you clearly aren’t me.

The first movie I ever remember watching was Gremlins when I was about three. I remember it was Gremlins because it caused me so much mental trauma that I, to this day, cannot eat after midnight or touch water. Needless to say, thus began my phase of fleeing in terror to my parent’s bed in the middle of the night on a regular basis when I was worried monsters were going to eat me. That phase lasted for almost a decade.

Gremlins clearly ruined me. Continue reading