6th movie of 2013, "Les Misérables" zero stars, Team Trivia at the 99 Restaurant, 3 1/2 stars
I'm sure some are wondering if i just hate all musicals. Well, no, i don't hate all musicals. If a movie is great, no matter the genre, i can appreciate the greatness. In fact, some of my favorite movies of all time are musicals, like the South Park Movie, or "Team America: World Police", "The Blues Brothers", "Once", "Pink Floyd's The Wall", and for the more classical examples, i really do love "Singin' in the Rain" and "Yankee Doodle Dandy". Not to mention, all the kids movies that are musicals, from "Wizard of Oz" or "Willy Wonka" and the countless Disney movies that are musicals. Those were all fine movies. What they all have in common though is a little bit of plot (well, not "The Wall", that's just a messed up movie with a great soundtrack) that is done during the parts of the movie that aren't musical numbers. Les Misérables did not have that, it was a fucking opera from start to finish. I was unaware of that, and it drove me crazy.
The opening shot of this movie, a bullshit CGI zoom-in of a CGI ship that's being pulled forward by a bunch of slaves, who are singing. Right away, the movie begins with crappy CGI that i hate, and a song, because of course, there's nothing like working all day for no pay that makes you want to sing in unison, with specific slaves getting their own solo throughout the song. Fine, stupid song is over, the boat has been moved, time to get to dialogue, right? Nope. We don't actually see the act of crime that Jean Valjean (Hugh Jackman) commits that somehow makes him a slave/prisoner for 20 years. It's his last day, and the prison guard, Javert (Russell Crowe, who i think sings like shit) reminds Valjean that he'll always just be prisoner 24601. Once again, this information is all brought up by the only communication available to the French in 1800s, SINGING!!!
I'll speed up the plots of the story and possibly spoiler everything so you people never have to see this. Valjean decides to clean up his act, but only after stealing from a priest who allows him to steal and that gives Valjean new hope. Time passes, Valjean is rich and using a fake name, because he can't be Valjean the prisoner anymore. The job he works for has Anne Hathaway, but she had a child and the father left, so she's a dirty whore. She loses her job, and whore it up after cutting her hair. She get's raped, she sings. Fucking whacko, i know. Valjean saves her, and promises to save Hathaways kid. Her kid is named Cosette or something, and is the dirty girl on the cover of the poster. She has dickhead guardians that rob people and treat her like a slave. Valjean rescues her, time passes. Now it's the viva la french, overthrow the rich and clean people time of the movie, mostly starring British people now. Pretty sure not a single french accent was used in this movie. Valjean helps the french, people die, love triangle, shitty Oliver Twist kid gets killed, Javert comes back, Valjean could kill him, but doesn't, Javert is so mentally fucked up, he kills himself over this act of kindness. Cosette has a nice marriage to the only french revolutionary guy that didn't die (once again, because Valjean saves him) and Valjean dies.
The actual story of Les Misérables has been done so many times before, that i'm wondering why the hell does it have to be a musical in the first place. It sucks as a musical. The songs aren't fun (ohh, that's why its called Les Misérables) and the director decided that for every song, a giant zoom of the singers face. Thats all i need, a bald Anne Hathaway crying and singing about dreaming another dream while her alien like head takes up 85% of the screen.
I went alone, but the theater was not empty. About 8 women (i was the only guy) bought tickets, and i was baffled that they were actually crying and feeling emotions through this thing. I was looking at my watch and wondering what i should get for dinner when this movie finally ends.
One scene i did enjoy was when the little British boy, who was so fucking like Oliver Twist he might as well have said, "Ello Govner! Got smore soup?" when he first showed up on screen. He eventually gets shot. I liked that a lot. Really wanted someone to shot that fucker soon. Mostly after his first song. God did i hate him. So, he dies, and i laugh and smile, trying my best to find some silver lining in this movie. The chicks who would be on their period if they hadn't hit menopause during the Nixon years, they all gasped in shock when the bullet ripped through that boys unsinging body.
This was just a bad movie. I can't take an opera seriously. What the hell would people want that in this day in age? Go back 200 years ago, fine, i understand. When a bad cough might kill you before you hit 30, might as well treat everyday like a musical. I think the only lesson to be learned is that the French fucking suck and they should take a shower every once in a while. Fuck the French, Fuck Les Misérables.
Thursday night they do team trivia at the 99 restaurant, and wanted to go again. First time we went, it was Me, Mike, Justi, and Mike's lady friend Leslie. We did well enough that we won a prize. Second time, it was just Me, Mike and Justi. We did well, but not enough to win. Yesterday was our third time going. I don't remember that many of the questions (but here's one: "What is the longest running game show?" I'll give the answer later on in the entry.) but i was happy that they were all random questions. Last time, it was broken down in a unique catergory, and if you didn't know, you were screwed. If you did know, easiest thing ever. This time though, under new restaurant rules, only 3 teams would win a prize, and only the top score of the round got the prize. If there was a tie, there would be a tie-breaker.
We got to this thing very early to make sure we'd get a seat at the bar. It was kinda stupid getting there at 6:00pm seeing as how the trivia doesn't even begin until 7:30pm. No biggie, i just drink my Mango Iced Tea (comes with free refills) while the others can drink their beers. At 7:00pm, Bruins game is on, i'm enjoying my drink, having popcorn and cheese & crackers, and enjoying myself. I order a fried shrimp plate with fries and enjoy my meal, getting ready to take on whoever will challange us in team trivia.
One thing we must put thought into is the team name. First time out, we went with the very generic "Team Andrews". Very boring, but good enough to win. Second time out, we went with Team Fat, Divorced and Unemployed (Justi had just lost her job that day). Very fun and creative, but it was too dark of a name. This time, we wanted to go with Team Me So Horny, but that chick running the team trivia would not allow it. So, Mike made the suggestion, "Change it to Team Can I Have Your Number". We did. Later on, we changed it to "Team Can I have your number, please?" to "Team Can I have your number, please? (my brother really likes you)" Very positive message to send out.
First round came and went. Nothing really clicked, we only got 5 questions right. The second round, we were pretty damn positive about our score. I felt unsure about 2 questions, that was it. 8 others, i was feeling great about. We got back a score of 7 1/2. Turns out the first people credited with making jeans were Jackson and Levi Straus. The shitty part was one of the questions was about the longest running game show. Me and Mike thought one way, Justi the other. We went with me and Mike's choice. Justi's answer would have been correct. We lost a point on that won. Also, I always thought Levi and Strauss were two seperate people. That tied us for high score of that round, and we had to do a tie breaker, which, if we listened to Justi, this would not have happened. Using the back of our answer sheets, we had to list as many of the 13 Michael Jackson #1 hits on the Billboard. In only one minute.
I flipped it over and started writing. Thriller... Bad... Beat It... Billy Jean... Black & White... Man in the Mirror... Ben... "Wait, what the hell is Ben?" Mike asked. "It's a song he wrote when he was a kid and had a pet rat" "That's crazy" said Justi. I had to remind her of the owning a monkey named bubbles and the molesting of all those boys. Having a pet rat named Ben was Michael Jackson at his most sane. ABC, easy as 1 2 3... "There's got to be more, right...?" i asked. Mike and Justi helped a bit, but we just didn't know that many songs. When it was over and we handed our paper in, some guy asked if we got Smooth Criminal. Of course, that is like Jackson's best song, totally didn't think about it. "With listing six songs correctly, that winners are Team Can I Have Your Number Please, My Brother Really Likes You!" It got a good laugh, and me, Mike and Justi high-fived as we won our first round ever and won ourselves some ski passes.
Third round happens. Now, if you win a round, you can't win anymore prizes. But we can easily shame these people if we repeat. Third round happens, if i'm 100% positive on 6 answers. Other 4, don't know. One i wasn't sure on was the amount of time it should take for someone to wash their hands. I said 20 seconds. It turns out, i was right.
For the final round, they don't give you the papers back, they just reask the questions and give the answers. As she's going down the list, the 6 that i was 100% positive were correct really were. "And the winner of that round, with 4 answers correct, are 3 different teams who now must do a tiebreaker."
"Wait, what? We got like 7 question correct"
"Oh yeah." the cute waitress who is like a dark and sexy libririan says, "Team Can I Have Your Number Please, My Brother Really Likes You!" smoked you all with 7 correct answers, and they are the overall winners.
"What do we win" Mike asks after sipping down the 5th of his giant beers of the night.
"Give them your number!" the players at the 99 said back. We later learned that 867-5309 was not her number, and she had a boyfriend she lives with. We tried, we failed, we tipped her out at 20%.
The night was over. I happily drove us home, knowing that even though we didn't listen to Justi, we won the tiebreaker. But if we did lose, we still would have won round 3. The answer for longest running game show, me and Mike thought it was Jeopardy, but Justi was correct, it was The Price is Right.
We came home to see the final seconds of the Bruins first lost in regulation of the year. To my boy Emmy's team, the Buffalo Sabres. Bruins had a 3-1 lead at one point, yet somehow finished losing 7-4. Frustrating, but whatever, 40 games left in the season.
That's gonna do it for me. I heard there's a big football game this weekend, so maybe i'll write about that. I have seen 8 of the 9 movies nominated for Best Picture, and if anyone knows where i can go to see "Amour" the only movie left, please tell me.
Brian's Big Thought of the Day:
I think i need to cool it with those Mango Iced Teas. Had to piss 5 times last night and didn't sleep until past 1am.