That’s right. I keep my blogging promises.
At least I do when it means I can rant as both a word nerd and a movie nut all at once. I don’t pass up those opportunities when they come along.
So, this past Sunday, as I was going into hour five of trying to write at the same time as playing fetch with puppy-extraordinaire Emma at my boyfriend’s house, there were a few very important issues on my mind:
- It is possible I may lose all feeling in my right arm, from fingertips over to collar bone, before Captain Chaos actually tires out from me throwing her toy for her.
- Should I have added extra cheese to my reheated pizza at lunch, or would that have really been too much of a good thing? (The possibility of regret is haunting me). And,
- There is something to be said for story plot designed to just let Jason Statham blow shit up.
Photo Courtesy of Cosmopolitan.com
The Meg. When I first started watching the trailer for this big-budget, big-stars version of Sharknado, I thought it was a joke. A fanmade thing, some wish-fulfillment of an odd but plausible wish: for Godzilla and Jaws to have a lovechild, and to make Jason Statham go beat it up, as only Jason Statham can do, with his coy accent and his I-could-easily-eat-you-for-breakfast-just-try-me-punk face.
Seriously. Look at these facial expressions:
Photo Courtesy of Jigidi.com
Ridiculous. Awesome. Curse him for being so darn cool, with expressions that haven’t changed since the ’90s.
Anyway, the trailer continued, complete with the featured giant squid getting chomped by the gianter shark under Statham’s watchful Dirty Harry-esque eye, and with tongue-in-cheek song placement over top of progressively more insane action sequences.
My mouth gaped. This was ridiculous, an insult to cinema! To the intelligence of real storytelling! To the intelligence of discerning movie watchers! Why did they make movies like this, anyway?
…So by the end of the trailer, when I had decided that of course I had to see it, I was forced to do some soul-searching. After all, if I was going to postpone my riot in order to instead march in there, buy my peanut M&Ms and munch my way through being guiltily entertained, I would really feel better if I could explain it with more than just, “It’s Jason Statham. Against a giant freakin’ shark. Of course I need to see it.”
As it turns out however, there really isn’t much more explanation than that required, just the same as there isn’t really explanation required for why some people love books like those from Shakespeare or Hemingway, while others love hardboiled detectives, nightmare horror monsters, swooning erotica heroines or fantasy/sci-fi epics, and still others love a combination of any of all of the above. When it comes down to it, storytelling doesn’t always need to be the kind that gets studied in Lit 101 for it to be valuable to its audience. Often times, it is exactly the kinds of stories that don’t come up in book club discussions and prestigious award circles that are the ones to find the most mass-appeal for their undeniable ability to entertain us and take us out of the real world for a while. That real world gives us plenty enough to be serious about, so what’s wrong with just looking for something to escape into?
So, to the next Sharknado I go, mostly shamelessly and with full expectations of it being ridiculous, and fun, and fantastically full of Jason Statham taking whatever amo or blunt object is nearby to some deep sea aquatic life for two hours or so.
It is a tale as old as time: bad guy goes “Chomp, chomp!” on the innocent, and good guy shows up and goes “Pew, pew, BOOM!” to the bad guy, and we all live happily ever after, because the good guy is awesome. Need I say more?
Go forth and Pew, Pew, fellow Writerlings.