Does Gervais’ THE INVENTION OF LYING trailer prove the law of diminishing returns?

serge-gainsbourg-Eric-ElmosninoIt’s really not a bad likeness. There are some new photos from the upcoming biopic of Serge Gainsbourg. Hopefully coming next year. [The Playlist]

mamaodieWho would have thought that racial stereotypes would actually become en vogue? First there was Sing Song, the bumbling Asian and the magical negroes of Australia! Very recently we’ve had the jive-talking illiterate black robots of Revenge of the Fallen. Now we have the upcoming Princess and the Frog to look forward to. Princess represents Disney’s return to 2D animation under the guiding hand of Pixar king John Lasseter. From the video linked, it seems assured that its jazz alligator, slack-jawed Cajun firefly and Mama Odie the comic-relief swamp witch doctor are bound to offend. The question is: how much? [Movieline]

invention_of_lying_2mvA new trailer is out for Ricky Gervais’ The Invention of Lying (formerly known as This Side of the Truth). The Gervais sheen has worn a bit over the years with the lacklustre Ghost Town and bit parts in Night at the Museum and Stardust (which was a good film but Gervais was the worst thing in it). However, this is a film that Gervais has actually co-written, not with his TV writing partner Stephen Merchant but with some guy called Matthew Robinson. To be quite honest, the trailer is fairly underwhelming. It’s jam-packed with amazing actors (Jonah Hill, Jason Bateman, Patrick Stewart, Jeffrey Tambor, Christopher Guest, Tina Fey, Rob Lowe and Martin Starr) none of whom make an impression. The whole thing seems visually flat and not particularly funny. And the use of the ELO track that was so right in the Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind trailer is just stupidly cheesy here. However, trailers have a knack of diluting the most interesting of film projects so here’s hoping the actual film is better.

zacksnyderI can attribute my loss of respect for the critical ability of CHUD.com’s Devin Faraci to one thing: Zack Snyder. Snyder (director of Watchmen, 300 and Dawn of the Dead) is the prototypical annoying jock who imagines himself to be a great philosopher after watching The Matrix. Faraci recently fell head over heels for Snyder talking about his next project which sounds like The Dumbest Movie of All Time:

I think Sucker Punch is a smart movie. It absolutely is challenging, and it’s fucking hardcore. At the end she gets… it’s dark! But it’s fucking actiony like nobody’s business. We hope the action we’re creating is off the charts, and it’s not stupid

I like fight choreography and I like being able to see what’s happening in action. When the girls are fighting, [like] they’re on their way to kill a baby dragon, they’ve killed all of these orc-like creatures and they’re entering a door [and] it’s this classic, real Navy SEAL style room clearing. They have machine guns but they’re fighting mythic creatures, impossible creatures. The hand to hand stuff is all brutal, because Damon [Caro] did all the [fights] in Bourne and it has that vibe to it.

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4 responses to “Does Gervais’ THE INVENTION OF LYING trailer prove the law of diminishing returns?

  1. James Douglas

    Yeah, Snyder seems increasingly underwhelming. However, who can’t get behind the idea of an R-rated, hyper-violent, all-female action extravaganza? I know I can.

    Plus he cast an attractive, pillow-lipped Australian in the lead role. Have some national pride.

    At least it seems like a welcome retreat from the pretensions to greatness that accompanied Watchmen. In fact it was Faraci’s championing of that film that really made me question his critical thinking.

    Did you see it? It must be difficult to spend so much money and so much effort and so many good intentions and still come up with something singularly underwhelming and fucking pointless.

    I have a theory that Watchmen, far from being a slap in the face of superhero movie conventions (as the source material provides), is actually the apotheosis of the intellectually numbing acquiescence to nerdy fans that the success of that genre seems to have inspired in Hollywood studios.

    • Brad

      Yeah, Faraci’s love of Watchmen really did it for me too. I totally agree with your theory on Watchmen. How could something be so technically ‘faithful’ yet be so unbelievably stupid?

  2. Ramon Glazov

    I would only watch Snyder’s upcoming “The Guardians of Ga’Hoole” because of Geoffrey Rush, Hugo Weaving, and David Wenham (!).

    I think it has potential as an even more infamously stupid film than Revenge of the Fallen.

    I’m actually looking forward to the new Disney film. I still enjoy most 2D Disney pictures from the 90s:

    “Hercules” kind of pissed me off because Disney’s version of Hera loves Hercules and even says “We’re so proud of you” at the end. The mythological Hera (an excellent example of which can be found in Seneca’s “Hercules Furens”, which should be performed on stage more often) is a scheming Borderline bitch who tricks Hercules into murdering his family. (Also, in the myth, Hercules is conceived when Zeus sleeps with Alcumene. In the movie, Hera is Herc’s mother because Disney had issues with adultery. Disney’s “Oedipus Rex” should be fun to watch, though.)

    “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” is a nice little cartoon, though. I love that creepy song that Frollo sings. Back in the 90s, Disney could allude to rape.

    Hopefully, the new film will be more of the 90s.

  3. Ramon Glazov

    A further note:
    In the opening of Seneca’s “Hercules”, Hera (or Juno, as the Romans called her) is pissed off that the sky is full of constellations that Zeus has fathered with other women. (Presumably, the mythological figures that Zeus fathered became constellations when they were died.)

    Come to think of it, “Xanadu” is more accurate than “Hercules” in this respect. Remember all the multi-racial muses that claim to be Daughters of Zeus? “Xanadu”, at least, has the guts to admit that Zeus gets around.

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