Hollywood has given up

by Brian Keaney

It being a rainy day here on the Cape, movies are in order.  My sister and her boyfriend are off to the theater – she to see Eat, Pray, Love, and The Expendables for him.  The latter, I believe, is the final proof that Hollywood has simply given up.  For the better part of a decade the summer blockbusters have either been comic books brought to the silver screen or a 1970’s or 1980’s TV show made into a feature length film.

At least some effort was made to add some originality to the remakes, however.  With the X-Men, for example, Rogue was no longer a reformed villain.  Now she is a confused teenage girl trying to find herself at Professor Xavier’s school.  The Dukes of Hazard in the Johnny Knoxville version also were not just some “good old boys, never meaning no harm.”  No, in the film they enjoyed blowing stuff up and general mayhem for its own sake.  Not exactly faithful to the original in either case, but entertaining nonetheless.

The Expendables just screams out that the film industry has finally, at long last, run out of ideas.  No longer are they even attempting to remake a former winner and try to add some sort of luster to faded glory.  They are not even bothering to come up with an original script anymore; they just throwing together a dozen or so former headliners (whose own stars have faded considerably in the decades since they were good popular) and hoping that a long list of credits will be enough to pry wallets open in a troubled economy.

Call me a snob, but I’m not wasting my money on it.  I’m staying home and watching Borat on DVD instead.  I may have seen it before, but at least Cohen came up with a unique character and concept.  That’s worth the price of admission any day.