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JUST SAY NO….to crap July 16, 2006

Posted by doctorolove in Movies.

This has gotten out of hand and I think we need an intervention.

I want to discuss what we as a nation have just allowed to happen without even mentioning it. We, as a collective unit, have to pile into a large room (the Astrodome, that cool airplane hangar from Armageddon where they house the space shuttle, Star Jones’ old dressing room) and bring them all in. Heck, I’ll bring the Doritos, same Ho-Hos and non-offensive liquids. We need to sit this guy down and tell him, “No more coke movies.”

What is a “coke movie?” It’s not a movie about cocaine (though, quite often, the drug shows up in strictly a plot point device facet). It’s not a movie about Coca-Cola or even about Jim “Cokes” Coker, a 1970’s NFL defensive back famous for his distinction as being the only white guy to not sport a fu-Manchu moustache in the facial hair happy decade. No, a “coke movie,” for the sake of our argument, is a film, hastily made, with a script so full of holes Nicole Ritchie wants to wear it as jeans. It’s filled with so many B-list and character actors that you spend half the film racking your brain trying to remember where “that guy” is from. The plot is usually pretty straight forward: angry professional (cop, government agent, gumshoe, ballerina) is in dire straits with an ornery evil entity (drug lords, ex-partner, the maitre’d at Spago) and spends the film trying to right the wrongs brought upon him, usually with the help of Rae Dawn Chong, or in rare cases, a member of the Saved by the Bell cast not named Screech. They throw in some car chases and a few shots of some tropical city and sell it to Cinemax or that sketchy video store on the corner, next to the pawn shop. The film is often made for one reason. In order for a studio to green light this tripe, the producers need to attach a somewhat notable actor in either the angry professional or evil entity role. And they often find the actor in Hollywood whose bank account is dwindling low due to an addiction to a costly substance of ill repute. The actor takes it immediately, envisioning the paycheck that will bring them more of their vice of choice before it even clears at the bank. Hence, we are all forced to suffer the indignity of the “coke movie.”

So who are we bringing in? What dastardly actor has brought more of these films upon us than any one else? That’s right: this nation needs to have a serious talk with none other than Mr. Gary Busey.Busey

I do feel bad for him. When your first leading role out of the gate, like his role in The Buddy Holly Story, garners you an Oscar nomination, you really have the future domination of Hollywood in your fingertips. Sure, the role required him to do nothing more than play up his Southern drawl, get a bad Brady perm and wear a pair of really bad Buddy Holly glasses straight from the .99 cent rack at Eckerd’s, but he sweated and rolled his eyes all the way through it. He even hit pay dirt with Lethal Weapon, giving future generations of actors the template for playing evil master criminals with a questionable case of albinism. But since then, and maybe because of it, his career has spiraled down to such a low point that even his self effacing turn on Entourage really didn’t look like he was acting.

His “coke movie” roles have been piling up. Almost every time you turn on Cinemax after three in the morning, you have good chance of him popping up on your television screen. Him or a strange attempt at soft porn with bad synthesizers and muted colors. And I could allow him to continue if it didn’t look like he was phoning in every role. People take roles in terrible films just for paychecks all the time (That’s right, Mr. Cage, Ghost Rider is not a cultural statement!) but at least they try. Busey looks like he is merely counting the seconds until his bank account grows. His patented growling and sweating style of acting has been replaced with a strange eyebrow and squint hybrid that resembles somebody who just realized there’s an offensive odor in the room. Squinting is a highly effective film acting tool, but not when you obviously look like you’re reading cue cards. And the room is dark. And you’re alone. As for the cue cards, I hope no definitive proof he’s been using them, but I’m sure one of his lines was “We’ll get this guy if it takes all week. Turn and sit. All week.”

I could forgive these films if not for the unmentionable consequences they wrought. Not only are they giving false senses of artistic pride to the hacks that churn them out, but these people are preventing truly artistic geniuses from breaking into the industry (So sue me. I’m jealous). Cinemax is so bogged down with a library of crap that it’s preventing them from showing other more culturally relevant titles. And the movies are showing a new generation of film makers of tomorrow that instead of trying their damnedest to change the world with their works, they can hang out with the rich and famous just by copying a dramatic arc from the bad episodes of Miami Vice. The worst of all may be the sad and degrading fact that Busey’s participation has inspired such one time rising stars as Tom Sizemore and Michael Madsen to start powdering their own noses with a resume full of “coke movies.”

So what are we going to say to Gary? Do we pep him up by showing him clips of Point Break? Do we bring up the fact that his long lost twin brother Nick Nolte has bounced back from “MugShotGate”? Can we point to the resuscitation jobs Tarantino has done for every other tough guy actor in his peer group? We could try to assure him of the dangers illegal substances wreak on his body, but that’s not our job. That’s Dr. Phil’s. Maybe, just maybe, we try to convince the directors and writers of today to start writing the roles Gary Busey is known for and pepper them throughout teen sex comedies. Because when Busey’s on, he’s a guilty pleasure of the nth degree. And what better way to make gratuitous boob shots even more pleasurable than with a shot of school Busey magic.

So, the plan is set. Somebody rent the large space. Get his agent on the phone. And please RSVP. Let’s stop these “coke movies” before they really get out of hand. Or at least leave them for Haley Joel Osment to do in a few years. Because if anything’s gonna get that kid out of our hair, it’s a well timed addiction. And a few films with Talisa Soto wouldn’t hurt either.
Anybody know where I can get coffee cake for, say, one million? See you at the intervention. And if anyone has a copy of Rookie of the Year, could you bring it? Mine’s really scratched. We’re coming for you Gary. The pain will be over soon enough



1. guppyman - July 17, 2006

Funny stuff….

Thanks for playing over at my place!

2. greg - July 19, 2006

I submit to you the observational work of Stallybrass and White regarding “co-option and inversion by the state.” Yes, all these gentlemen have disappointed you because they have done the one unforgivable act they stopped being the outsider. They became normal. Its a sad fact, no matter how much we protest as a youth claiming that we going to change the world–in the end–we return to the core values in which the world was made for us-ahh the nostalgia of youth….

3. doctorolove - July 19, 2006

While I agree, the end of the outsider stigma is partially the reason for my dissappointment, this does not absolve these stalwarts from trying to regain their roots. I mean, ice Cube’s new album is so full of obscenities and misoygyny that George Carlin won’t listen to it. You can’t go home again.

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