Tragedy comes in threes

Bob Mackey

If you’re reading this now, there’s a very good chance that you’ve already seen the film Ocean’s 13.

Actually, if you’ve seen Ocean’s 13, this article is probably being read to you by a nurse as you slowly recover from a case of catastrophic blindness.

Don’t blame me – I wanted this paper and the dire warning contained within to hit the streets of Kent last Thursday morning, but apparently running into a printing factory and screaming “Stop the presses!” must be some kind of industry code for “Call the police!”

Now that that mess and its corresponding arraignment is behind me, I must proclaim my promised warning: Do not see Ocean’s 13. A cheaper solution would be to buy an issue of Star magazine, or perhaps US Weekly, and construct your very own flip book, because that’s essentially what Ocean’s 13 is: an outlet (or possibly an input) for celebrity worship.

And as with all major disasters, we’ve been warned. How? By the very existence of a trifecta of terrible “three” movies plaguing our box offices this season.

Exhibit A: Shrek the Third, or Mike Myers Got $10 Million To Do Whaaat? Yes, the goal of the Shrek series has always been to provide kids with fart jokes while giving adults Jay Leno-style pop culture references, thus appealing to the broad spectrum of mediocrity. This is clearly seen in Shrek the Third, a movie so middle-of-the-road most people who’ve seen it can’t discern the plot of the movie from that of the Shrek McDonald’s commercials. Did Donkey really order french fries in the third act? You’ll have to wait for the DVD!

Exhibit B: Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End. You may claim, “But Johnny Depp is instant cool!” In reality, Depp’s habit of starring in overly long, overblown, stupid movies is jeopardizing his chances of hanging out with Fonzie when he reaches Cool Heaven. Face it: If you’re in college and you like Johnny Depp, you might as well hang up your Animal House poster and start joking about pizza and ramen noodles, because you’ve just become that guy (or girl). As for myself? I’m still waiting for the next two movies in the other Disney ride-based film franchise, The Haunted Mansion. It’s ripe with family-friendly chuckles!

Exhibit C: Spider-Man 3, or Contractual Obligation Superhero Film. From the very beginning, the advertising for this movie bothered me: “The black suit! Spider-Man in the black suit! He’s totally a different color this time!” This type of campaign only works on people who got excited about the dual lightsaber in The Phantom Menace – “It’s like one lightsaber except there’s two this time!” – meaning approximately 75 percent of the country has seen Spider-Man 3 by this point in time.

You’re free to go sit in a dark room and watch a bunch of celebrities pal around, and think, “Gosh, isn’t it nice that they can get along and make a movie together?”

But just remember this: they’re dead inside. And soon, you will be too!

Bob Mackey is a film nut, a graduate student in English and a columnist for the Summer Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].