Film Reviews

Joe Bob Briggs

Last week I decided it was time to update my personal ad. I think it had something to do with Wanda Bodine telling me that I was "the kind of scumball that no sane woman would ever date."

First I tried my usual flat-out lies:
"Michael Bolton-lover likes trips to the botanical gardens, wine coolers, and long phone conversations about what your cat did this morning. Looks not important, but a wise, commitment-minded soul is. Please be serious about tofu."

This kind of ad always works, but you end up with gals named Valerie who work at the Whole-Earth Vitamin Store.

OK, so next I tried my "man of iron" ad:
"Whitewater canoe guide desires Amazon to trek the Arctic Circle in snowshoes. You should be a mountaineer who can bench-press 200 pounds and still fit into a size 4 plastic dress. How 'bout them Rangers?"

This ad also works, but you end up with girls named Jeri who might at any moment abandon you for a woman named Velma.

No, what I needed was the perfect '90s ad--sensitive, but not too sensitive; macho, but not too macho; and, above all, totally deceptive.

So here's what I came up with:
"Hi! How you doing? Want a hopeless romantic who will cater to your every need? Well, maybe I will and maybe I won't. Because no matter how crazy and illogical you become, I always just go with it!

"Do you get easily bored when a guy is too nice to you? Always thought you wanted a man in your life, but once a real one shows up, you think, 'He's got a flaw!'? Well, now you've found me. I'm a total chameleon.

"P.S. Be spontaneous! Send a photo! Topless spandex would be nice, unless you feel like wearing Birkenstocks and overalls!"

So what do you think?
Speaking of flesh-eating creatures, they remade Piranha. Can you believe it? The original filmed-in-Texas Joe-Dante-directed Piranha is a '70s cult classic, but I have to say, they really screwed it up this time.

They have these giant mutant fish, which were bred at a secret military installation, devouring skinny-dipping teenagers.

But wait! Here comes Alexandra Paul, the stylishly dressed private eye who searches the boonies for the missing slutty daughter of a real-estate developer.

Fortunately, she runs into sullen novelist William Katt. They pole down the river chasing the killer piranhas as they get closer to a kids' summer camp.

In short, this movie doesn't make a lick of sense.
Nineteen dead bodies. One dead cat. One dead dog.
Four breasts. Aquarium to the head.
Multiple leg-eating. Killer raft-eating piranha attack.
Drive-In Academy Award nominations for...

* Lorissa McComas, as the skinny-dipping teenager who has two enormous talents.

* Darleen Carr, as the crazed, grapple-hook-wielding piranha expert who says, "Razor teeth! They breed!"

* And Kehli O'Byrne, as the oversexed camp counselor who says, "I'm kind of like a promotion--you have to earn me."

One and a half stars.
Joe Bob says check it out.

Joe Bob's Find That Flick
This week's lobe liquefier comes from...Jeff Shideler of Shreveport, Louisiana:

"A while back I saw a movie on WTBS that included Alan Alda and David Niven.
"Niven was a ghost and also the captain of a ship on which Alda was a passenger. It took place in the South Pacific during WWII.

"Niven constantly drank whiskey. At the end of the movie he had to fight the Japanese, but I don't remember how it ended, nor do I remember the title.

A video will be awarded for the correct answer.
We Have a Winner!
Dennis Nivens wrote:

"When I started college in 1975 there was a lunkheaded ROTC guy in my dorm named Griswold. He was pissed off that we pulled out of Vietnam, because he was planning on saving the bullet he shot his first 'gook' with. He wanted to start a campus Rollerball team, and he had an all-time favorite movie that he would describe to me in detail every time he drank more than a six-pack of beer.

"The movie, set in the future, had the whole Western Hemisphere merged into one country called Pan-America. Anybody from the Commie-infested rest of the world who dared cross the wrong longitude line would be blasted into the next millennium by very cool weapons, including the dreaded flying submarines (?).

"Does anybody out there know the name of Griswold's favorite flick?"
We had five correct answers, so the winner was chosen at random. And he is...C.M. Alix of Fort Myers, Florida:

"Of course this dude's talkin' about Jimmy Caan's finest hour, Rollerball, based on a story from an excellent collection that also contains a tale about some dude hidin' under some chick's house, which could be the perfect vehicle for revivin' Jimmy's career.

"Memorable moment in the flick: Chick at a class party uses some kinda wild flame-throwing pistol to torch a big tree for kicks."

To discuss the meaning of life with Joe Bob, write Joe Bob Briggs, P.O. Box 2002, Dallas, Texas 75221 or fax him at (213) 462-5982. Joe Bob even hangs out on the Internet: [email protected].

1996 Joe Bob Briggs (Distributed by NYT Special Features)

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Joe Bob Briggs