For The A.V. Club’s fall movie preview for 1996, we’ve brought in a couple of totally extreme new characters to help you get the most out your trips to the theater! On one side we’ve got Right-On, a cool-but-kinda-snobby dude who’s already picking out which movie posters are gonna paper his dorm-room walls—he knows his Scorseses from his De Palmas! On the other, there’s the just-don’t-care attitude of Dumbass, who likes his movies a little more extreme, and who cares as much about furious action as he does about who’s in it. We’re not saying which one is right, because—like you—they both love movies as much as you do!
Right-On: So Dumbass, here we are again, another autumn with a full slate of films—and the usual movies, too—vying for our eyes and dollars. Let’s start with September releases: Is it safe to assume that the tiresome-looking Adam Sandler vehicle Bulletproof is at the top of your must-see list? I’ll admit to the odd giggle at Billy Madison, but Happy Gilmore was dire, and this guy’s 15 minutes will surely be up soon. I’m cautiously optimistic about Feeling Minnesota, the smart-looking family drama starring Keanu Reeves, with an appearance by the amazing Tuesday Weld. Sure, Reeves has been in some shit lately, but I have hope that the star of Bertolucci’s Little Buddha and Van Sant’s My Own Private Idaho can bubble to the surface and leave the Speed guy at home. Speaking of the greats: Last Man Standing has me very concerned. You do not fuck with Kurosawa, Bruce Willis, even if you’ve earned some goodwill from Pulp Fiction. And speaking of Pulp Fiction, this 2 Days In The Valley movie looks like biggest rip-off since Mac And Me. Tarantino should sue for his cut of the profits. (Of course, City On Fire director Ringo Lam should sue Tarantino, but that’s another story.) So what about you, Dumbass? What are the great unwashed excited about this September?
Dumbass: Cool, looks like you’re all set to have another wack time at the movies, Right-On. You’re damn right I’m looking forward to Bulletproof, just like anyone who doesn’t hate to laugh probably is. Damon Wayans and The Sandman in the same flick? Ha ha, Homey does play that. As for all that other smack you’re talking, as usual, I don’t know if you and I are even seeing the same trailers here. If you ask me, Feeling Minnesota looks hella lame; Chris Cornell should sue over their ganking such a wicked song for some weak romantic-comedy shit. But you know what, I’m gonna let my dude Keanu Reeves slide, because I just saw Chain Reaction and it kicked So. Much. Ass. (I gotta get a motorcycle!) And the preview I saw for 2 Days In The Valley had that Charlize Theron chick in some kind of white swimsuit spreading her legs, so: One ticket, please, extra Charlize. For everything else, man, I don’t know. Hey, you sure you don’t want to see The First Wives Club? It’s got a bunch of boring old ladies in it, like you.
Right-On: Very funny as usual, Dumbass. Always the first to bring out the personal insults. On to October films, though: I’m sure you’re all a-titter about High School High, a parody of high-school movies starring the loathsome Jon Lovitz. The less said about that one the better, but how did Louise Fletcher end up in this? The Long Kiss Goodnight looks like shlock that might be saved by its cast, Samuel L. “Pulp Ficion” Jackson and Geena Davis. Looks like a hit either way. The psycho-sexual drama Bound will surely break down some barriers, though it looks too smart for the mainstream. Maybe they’ll stick with Thinner, the latest big-screen adaptation of a book by unabashed horror hack Stephen King. Get that guy some Wite-Out.
Dumbass: Kee-rist, dude, why don’t you just ask Quentin Tarantino to be your boyfriend already? Anyway, hell yeah I’m looking forward to High School High because it looks funny as fuck. I mean sure, Dangerous Minds is obviously a stone classic, but I’d still love to see it taken down a peg. (Let me guess: You also didn’t like the greatest comedy of our time, Don’t Be A Menace To South Central While Drinking Your Juice In The Hood.) Plus, the soundtrack bumps, and Tia Carrere is still fine as hell. Speaking of which, yeah, I’m feeling pretty psycho-sexual about Bound myself. Normally when I want to see that kind of girl-on-girl action, I have to watch it through my scrambled Cinemax. (Thanks, Dad.) Anyway, I had to look up The Long Kiss Goodnight, but then I saw it was directed by my man Renny Harlin and stars Geena Davis’ legs—talk about a cliff I wouldn’t mind hanging off, if you catch my drift—so that looks pretty tight. But October is obviously owned by The Glimmer Man. Steven Seagal and Keenan Ivory Wayans in the same flick? Ha ha, Homey does play that. Oh, and I’m not sure what the hell Thinner is, but I know it ain’t about your mom. Boo-yah!
Right-On: As usual, Dumbass, you resort to ad hominem attacks when you have no facts to stand on. I hope Bound is able to educate you somewhat, and not in the way you’d hoped. Anyway, let’s finish up with November, which doesn’t have much to recommend it, I’m afraid. I’m apprehensive about Romeo + Juliet; even though Baz Luhrmann made Strictly Ballroom, he could be in over his head with this Shakespeare update. Still, I’m quite certain it will be better than the commercial disguised as a film called Space Jam. Mel Blanc is spinning in his grave, no doubt. I’m looking forward, as always, to the latest film in the Star Trek universe; this year’s is called First Contact. And finally, a film that I saw at this year’s Telluride Festival—as you may remember, my parents have a place in Aspen—is going to get a lot of attention for its writer/star, Billy John Thornon. It’s called Sling Blade, and it’s devastating. You might even like it, Dumbass, as it’s got at least one violent moment.
Dumbass: Hey, it’s not my fault you always come off a little hominem whenever you talk about movies—and there’s nothing wrong with that. You should embrace who you are, dude! So is that Sling Blade movie where the guy has a big machete that he slings around and it boomerangs right back to him, taking people’s heads off like bladow? You’re right, that sounds sick! Maybe not as sick as Space Jam, though. Mark my words: In 20 years, we’ll be looking back at this as just the start of Michael Jordan’s championship movie career. For real, what can’t that guy do? Anyway, it doesn’t surprise me you’re hyped for Nerd Trek, or that you’d even consider seeing Romeo + Juliet outside of class. (Make sure and see if they have any extra credit essays you can do.) Me, I’ll be wrapping up the fall doing two things: Watching my man Arnold Schwarzenegger stomp Sinbad’s ass in Jingle All The Way, and murkin’ at The English Patient, which looks like the most off-the-heezy depiction of the little-explored Italian campaign of World War II, fo’ sheezy. Ralph Motherfucking Fiennes, son! Dumbass OUT.