‘The Break-Up’: Is this going to be another ‘Gigli’?!

Music with attitude: ‘Switchboard Susan’ by Nick Lowe

It’s rant and kvetch time…you’ve been warned… 

I am frankly more than a little nervous about what the upcoming movie ‘The Break-Up’ is going to do for VDO’s career. I hope my gut instincts are totally wrong, but unfortunately too often my gut is right about things like this.

First of all there are (up until now) press interviews in which VDO says he did this film as a favor to his friend Vince Vaughn. There are now some comments from VDO saying that he thought it would be fun to do a comedy (which it is – VDO’s very good in a little comedy called ‘Good Luck’) and that he only had to be on set a week.

Vaughn’s getting $12 million for this one. I hope VDO gets a tenth of that for his week’s worth of work (VDO’s worth a lot more but I’m sure he probably didn’t see this as a get rich quick part, remember, he’s in it for friendship).

Reading between the lines I’m hearing from VDO well before this movie is seen by anyone: “Hey if this movie truly sucks, don’t blame me. My reasons for doing this disaster waiting to happen were noble”.

Never in a million years did I think VDO would ever do a film with Jennifer (Ewww) Aniston. Aniston to me is so utterly unappealing, so utterly unfunny, so utterly limited in her range of talent (as in basically having none to speak of) that to me ‘Ewww’ is her middle name. She’s like Paris Hilton only 1) she’s not going to inherit any money from rich hotelier parents who don’t know the first thing about parenting (as evidenced by the insipidness of their media saturating offspring) and 2) she’s housetrained (Paris’s dogs may be, but I’m sure Paris isn’t, thank you for that Mr. and Mrs. Hilton).

If you happen to be doing the post production on ‘The Break-Up’ and you’re reading this, could you do me a favor and make sure that VDO and the icky female lead have no screen time together? I would be eternally grateful to whomever is editing to make sure that no one ever sees a VDO-(Ewww) Aniston scene. I have serious nightmares about seeing VDO acting next to whatever the hell it is that she does.

Worse never ever *EVER* did I imagine that the press would so intensely care about who Jennifer (Ewww) Aniston, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and Vince Vaughn were respectively romantically (or sexually) linked to, much less that these four parties are all now mentioned in the same kind of thought ad nauseum.

Hell you can’t even watch the local newscasts from *Washington DC* of all places (where there are stories of local and federal corruption, a judicial nomination, a president who may be conveniently ignoring the existance of the US Constitution to accomplish some of his agenda and a war) and not hear blather about any of the four people mentioned above (and no, the anchors who have to read about this stupidity from teleprompters can’t keep from making smart comments like ‘I don’t know why I have to report this but….’). The word ‘OVERSATURATION’ doesn’t begin to describe how sick many are of the ‘love rectangle’ story (which ought to be accurately called a non-event, because this is more gossipy media BS that NO ONE CARES ABOUT)!

And it’s many many *months* before ‘The Break-Up’ will be released (currently scheduled for June 2 2006 but since Universal changed that date before, the date is subject to change again) but it’s always subtly mentioned in the press along with whatever the hell might or might not be going on between Vaughn and Jennifer (Ewww) Aniston (who by the way, is getting $9 million to be the female lead in ‘The Break-Up’).

Anybody remember a stinker from 2003 called ‘Gigli’? A movie so bad, that the publicity people seized upon reporting the romance between its leads in a desperate attempt to create buzz for it. And how both the romance and the film tanked?

That damned ‘jiggly’ movie (yes I know that the title is pronounced ‘Zhee-Lee’, but it’s hardly worth the effort to try and someone smarter than me coined that blunt and appropos and funny phrase so I’m sticking with it) had Christopher Walken and Al Pacino in it. I know they’re still working, doing good stuff. Hell they probably did just fine in ‘Jiggly’ (it’s not like I have to see it to know, because hundreds of critics and thousands of moviegoers could probably bear their performances, what little there was of them).

But why *why* WHY does it feel like ‘The Break-Up’ is headed in a similar direction?!?! And this time the fallout could hit VDO which of course worries me sick.

Having cruised through a few of the ordinary people reviews of ‘Jiggly’ at imdb.com, I take a little heart in knowing that they were smart enough not to hold Pacino and Walken responsible for the overall badness that was the ‘damned ‘jiggly’ movie’.

But I’m wondering just when the press, the critics, and the public will see ‘The Break-Up’ as ‘Jiggly, Part II’ or more simply ‘The Fuck-Up’? When they realize that the love rectangle publicity angle is just than, so much hype, or when they watch (the painfully unfunny) trailer (which is now visible at the film’s official site) one too many times or when they finally pony up their $10 to see this in a movie theater?

My sense of impending box-office bomb cannot be quelled but I think I have solved the how to see every VDO movie there is (even one as potentially painful as ‘The Break-Up’ which I have heard compared to ‘The War Of The Roses, another movie I didn’t find funny either) and yet minimize my pain in my accomplishment:

My strategy for seeing the actual film is as follows:

I will wait for ‘The Break-Up’ to be out for more than 5 minutes theatrically. If it gets yanked immediately (as I strongly suspect it might), I will rent the DVD. I will have someone whose taste in movies is similar to mine watch it first, then if it’s horrifically bad, I will on my friend’s advice skip ahead to VDO’s scenes (which my friend will have dutifully noted for me by scene index number / time). Then if I can tolerate it, I’ll watch the whole of ‘The Break-Up’.

I will of course repay my friend in the future by doing the same with a movie of his or her choice.

I hope VDO will try doing another comedy, but wouldn’t it be novel if the comedy were actually funny, so funny that it didn’t matter what the actors were doing in their off-screen exploits?

Meanwhile I’ll fantasize about how to better spend the $21 million that went for the lead’s salaries (a really good indie with VDO could have been made for that), like say getting ‘Five Minutes, Mr. Welles’ widely released in the USA.



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