I think it's only fair that if you're involved in the production, distribution, sale or purchase of DVDs like these, which are clearly designed to fool idiots into thinking they're getting Robin Hood (with added dragons), Iron Man or 2012, then you should be strapped into a dentist's chair with flaming cocktail sticks propping your eyelids open and made to watch Iron Hero (US title: Metal Man) on a loop for the rest of time while a hungry kitten nibbles away at your most delicate areas, which have been smeared with fish paste, and footage of all this taking place should be broadcast live on BBC1 instead of Strictly Come Dancing.
OK youse guys, let's see if you know your movies. Here's a series of events that happen in a specific film. All you have to do is name the film:
Did you get it? Of course you did. Everything described above happens in The Marine 2, the film The Incredible Suit challenged itself to watch after seeing this, and which, it should be noted, does not carry the disclaimer "Any resemblance to Die Hard is unintentional and purely coincidental".
And while Die Hard might have the edge in terms of a clever, witty script, memorable characters, excellently choreographed fight scenes, amazing stunts, a terrific score, actors who can act and skipfuls of lens flares, what it doesn't have, that The Marine 2 does, include:
A bizarrely abstract DVD menu screen that looks like
what you see when you're drunk and you close your eyes
Bafflingly vague location intertitles that imply there's only one US Marine Base in the whole of Southeast Asia
Subtle product placement
A soldier called Phil Army
So it's difficult to decide which is the better film. Although I don't see Tesco taking out massive adverts for the Die Hard DVD, so I think the evidence speaks for itself.
But that, like Shia LaBeouf, is irrelevant. What The Incredible Suit would like to point out today is that there are a number of other things you could spend the recommended retail price of £19.99 on which would almost certainly enhance your life more than watching Guy Ritchie turn one of literature's most cerebral, intellectual characters into an ass-kicking pair of rock hard pecs.
E, as they say, G:
For a quite literally unbelievable £4.99 you can ask the nice people at Amazon to send you The Complete Stories Of Sherlock Holmes. That's every single story Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote (56 short stories, four novels) about Sherly, and you can take it from The Incredible Suit that they're ace, even though they're, like, well old and stuff. In fact for the RRP of the film you can buy four copies of this book and give three to people you love. Advantages: You don't have to look at Jude Law. Disadvantages: Weighs roughly the same as a Ford Fiesta.
For less than nine quid you can get the soundtrack album on new-fangled 'Compact Disc'. It's by far the best thing about the film and features Hans Zimmer going mentile on a cimbalom. Good work Zimbo! Advantages: You don't have to look at Jude Law. Disadvantages: There is a picture of Jude Law on the cover. Just throw it away.
This box set of no less than FOURTEEN Sherlock Holmes films starring Bezzle Rethbowne as the titular dick can be yours for a mind-bogglingly reasonable 15 nicker. These babies represent a more faithful take on the characters and, amazingly, when Holmes puts a fake beard on it doesn't just look like Holmes with a fake beard on. Advantages: You don't have to look at Jude Law. Disadvantages: Some of the films are a bit cackapoopoo in all honesty.
If you're a bit stupid you could allow yourself to accidentally buy this version of Sherlock Holmes for just £4.99. It stars such screen legends as almost-porn-star-named Ben Syder and is directed by no less a talent than Rachel Goldenberg, producer of Transmorphers 2 and Second Unit Director of Alien Vs Hunter, The Terminators and 2012: Supernova, and therefore perpetrator of violent crimes against cinema. To be fair I haven't seen it, it could be amazing. Advantages: You don't have to look at Jude Law. Disadvantages: Features dragons, dinosaurs and a giant octopus. Actually that sounds incredible, buy it.
What, in some primitive cultures, could be called The Greatest Competition Of All Time closed at the weekend, and with the number of entries reaching double figures (two) it was time to pick a winner.
So I finished off a bottle of delicious 7-year-old Cuban Legendario rum (I'm still awaiting a sponsorship offer from them) and, with the assistance of Mrs The Incredible Suit, used the most sophisticated method I could think of to declare a victor. Here's what happened:
Congratulations to the lucky winner then, I suppose. Get in touch and let me know when you can come and collect this embarrassing prize.
Mr Bojagi was directed by Marco van Belle and is in the process of being developed as a feature. If you liked the short and have got a few thousand quid lying around, why not give Marco a call and help out a talented British filmmaker? Go on, I bet it would really make his day.
The event itself was not just a film screening but an extended kids' birthday party, with colouring-in, free pop and gifts showered onto the audience by Ultra Culture's Charlie Lyne, the Galadriel of movie bloggers, dishing out DVDs and posters rather than rubbish leaf brooches and bits of old hair.
Next month's screening is antonym of normality Trash Humpers, the quality of which The Incredible Suit cannot confirm, but you'd still be advised to pop along if you can because it's what all the cool kids will be Tweeting about the next day. Deets here.
The Bad Lieutenant, sadly, excited me less than the possibility of a gratis fizzy drink. Nicolas Cage is hard work at the best of times (although Raising Arizona is megs), and although he didn't drive me completely Crackers Patel this time, his manic loon schtick failed to convince me that he was anything other than a weird actor behaving weirdly.
Director and renowned barmlord Werner Herzog seems undecided whether to make a 'normal' film or something typically barking, and ends up with neither, veering dangerously close to a Guy Ritchie-esque crime caper with 100% less Jason Statham and 100% more iguanas. That said, The Bad Lieutenant's refusal to sit comfortably in any given genre is admirable, and the scene in which Cage interrogates a crusty old biddy and her carer is top-notch maddery.
Of course the question on everone's lips is "Is this the film that finally reunites that bad guy and the janitor from Die Hard 2?", and I can happily reveal that the answer is a resounding "Yippee-ki-yay, muddy funsters":
Worth the price of admission just to see these two legends together again.
I've been analysing Hot Tub Time Machine since I saw it, and what has struck me as quite remarkable is its uncanny similarity to Back To The Future. Obviously a claim like that requires empirical evidence to back it up, so I've wheeled out The Incredible Suit's Comparotron 2000 to illustrate my point.
I think you'll agree that pretty much seals it.
In fact the only ways in which Hot Tub Time Machine differs from Back To The Future are in its all-encompassing absence of wit, charm and likeable characters, its reliance on poo and knob jokes and a continuous stream of swears in place of clever humour, its entirely predictable and lazy plotting, its casting of a kooky Zooey Deschanel-alike who I think I was actually supposed to think was Zooey Deschanel, its staggering failure to make us celebrate the return of Chevy Chase, its central message that to be happy and successful you need to be unspeakably wealthy and a complete asshole, the general impression that it was written by a plate of minced beef and the fact that it's not even as good as you'd expect a film called Hot Tub Time Machine to be.
Other than that, it's practically a shot-for-shot remake.
So here's that Super 8 trailer I babbled incoherently about on Monday:
I think I'm going to take the decisive step of burying my head in the sand and maintaining that this will still be the greatest thing since sliced E.T., despite the unavoidable fact that the last time Steven Spielberg had anything to do with Area 51, this happened:
Oh god, it's all coming flooding back. It's going to be awful isn't it.
It's that time of year when I like to look ahead to the forthcoming blockbuster season and contemplate all the films I'm looking forward to so much that I can barely stop my skeleton from popping out and dancing the macarena with excitement.
So here's a rundown of The Incredible Suit's most hotly anticipated summer movies, in alphabetical order so as not to give any undue preference to one particular film. It was a tough job narrowing these babies down, I can tell you!
And here's a selection of trailers for more of my top picks:
Indicate that you're emailing about the Prince Of Persia competition rather than informing me that a hitherto unknown relative has died in Nigeria and has left me an £18.4 trillion inheritance which I can claim if I could just amputate my right hand and post it, along with my passport, any major credit card and a retina, to a PO Box in Lagos.
Everyone who emails will be entered into a draw and a "lucky" "winner" chosen at random.
The competition, such as it is, closes at midnight on Friday 14th May, and I'll announce the chosen one at the weekend.
Let me just remind you that if you win YOU WILL have to collect it from Westminster, because there's no way I'm lugging this thing to the Post Office. It might sound like a pain but you'll get to meet The Incredible Suitand see the Houses Of Parliament, which is an added prize in itself.
*No, I didn't hang around at the premiere with a pair of pliers waiting for security to turn their back so I could nick a big picture of Gemma Arterton. Like Quantum, The Incredible Suit has people... everywhere.
The Incredible Suit would like to take a moment to register its excitement for Super 8, a 2011 film written and directed by JJ Abrams and produced by Steven Spielberg.
Just to clarify, that's a new film from the people responsible for, among other things, Raiders Of the Lost Ark and Back To The Future (two of The Incredible Suit's best films of all time ever), Cloverfield (The Incredible Suit's best film of 2008), Star Trek (The Incredible Suit's second best film of 2009) and Lost (The Incredible Suit's second best TV show of all time ever).
There's a trailer out there in full crappovision if you like that kind of thing; I'm such an unbearable snob that I refuse to watch it until it's on the interwebs in an officially sanctioned format that takes an hour to buffer. In the meantime I'm happy to gaze like a horny teenager at the heartbreaking beauty created by the combination of the following words and pictures:
Furthermore, if you want to goggle in disbelief at the lengths some people will go to to unpick a film's viral marketing campaign, have a look at this. These guys are so high up the Ladder Of Geek I can't even see them from my rung.
The other week the internets brought us a shedload of new photos from Robin Hood, all of which were possibly the most boring promotional material anyone's ever farted out in the hope of conning people into seeing an obviously crap film.
This kind of thing happens all the time and The Incredible Suit is sick of it, so I came up with a Nobel Prize-winning idea to make new promo stills more exciting. Here's the skinny:
Take a selection of dull images from a new movie
Find the nearest copy of morally indefensible craprag and occasional 'news'paper The Sun
Take the text from Deidre's Photo Casebook and add it to the movie stills
It occurs to me that I forgot to tell you all about that screening of Hitchcock's The Lodger I went to with live music by Minima. Sorry about that. It was ace.
There's no point in me banging on about how great Minima are again; all you need to know is contained in one handy blog post here. I haven't really mentioned what's so good about The Lodger though, so here are a few observations:
The Lodger looks like a murder-mystery-whodunnit on the surface but it's actually more of a drama about personal relationships, which sounds like the most boring thing on Earth but it's really not. If you hate dramas about personal relationships then it's also a murder-mystery-whodunnit so everyone's a winner.
It was made only about 30 years after the birth of cinema by a genius so confident and innovative that he was already mucking about with special effects in order to tell his story. The scene where the family look up at the ceiling, which dissolves to show the lodger pacing back and forth upstairs, must have melted contemporary audiences' marbles. It's still better than anything Michael Bay has ever done.
It's a little-known fact that Alfred Hitchcock travelled far into the future and brought an elderly Jessica Stevenson back with him to star in the film as the heroine's mother. Now that's ground-breaking.
I took this to prove I was there and to play with my new phone. It's not very good but you get the idea.
Hi! I'm Iron Man. Of all the films coming up in the blockbuster season of 2010, I'm here to tell you why you should watch Iron Man 2 rather than anything else, with my 7-point Iron Manifesto:
1. I pledge to get rid of my friend Rhodey from the first film because he was too interesting and a bit fat. My new Rhodey will be a slimline version who can easily fit into one of my spare suits, will immediately know how to operate the suit even though it took me about an hour of screen time in the first film, and will be entirely devoid of character so as not to show me up.
2. In fact I pledge that all my fellow characters will be as weak as possible so that I'm the only one anybody remembers. I'll waste Mickey Rourke and Sam Rockwell as rubbish one-dimensional villains, I'll give Scarlett Johansson a figure-hugging suit and one fight scene but nothing else and I promise to use the mighty Samuel L Jackson to turn up, deliver expository dialogue and bugger off again.
3. Despite having the most technologically advanced and downright incredible suit ever made, I pledge to resort to punch-ups in most of my fight scenes. If I do suddenly reveal a very cool laser that you've never seen before as - inexplicably - a last resort, I pledge to explain why I don't just use it all the time by muttering something about how it can only be used once. I also promise not to bore you with why that's the case.
4. I pledge to introduce an irrelevant subplot about how that thing on my chest that keeps me alive is also killing me, and furthermore I pledge to solve this problem with a further pointless subplot about my Dad which will be one of the most ridiculous contrivances in modern cinema.
5. Remember that cute scene from the trailer where Pepper Potts kisses my helmet (fnerk) and I jump out of a plane saying "you complete me"? Well I pledge not to include that in the film. I do, however, pledge to kiss her in a scene that is supposed to carry some emotional weight but is in fact about as emotionally charged as a tin can kissing a stick can be.
6. I pledge to include an obligatory final scene after the credits that means nothing to anyone except the most hardcore Marvel Comics fan.
7. Finally, I pledge to do absolutely nothing for the superhero genre, despite recent envelope-pushers like The Dark Knight and Kick-Ass, and I promise to do it with as vague a story and script as possible so as not to confuse the kiddlywinks.
So that's the Iron Man 2 Manifesto. I hope you'll choose my film as the one to spend a tenner on because we need all the cash we can to parp out another one of these in a couple of years.
It's Bank Holiday Monday and there isn't even a Bond film on the telly. I don't know what the world is coming to. I dread to think what future generations are going to grow up like having been deprived of the right to watch Roger Moore sucking face with an assortment of increasingly younger ladies.
Actually maybe that's not such a bad thing.
Anyway, if you're stuck for something to watch, then a) don't go and see Iron Man 2 (further deets tomorrow) and b) why not check out this helpful guide to what's new on DVD from last week's Empire newsletter?
Although when you've seen one you've probably seen 'em all.