Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Look not a gift cloak in the stitching!

You ever go to the movies and figure "Eh, I'll see what I'll see what I get there"?

I should honestly do that more often, but it's hard to see something that will honestly surprise you if you read as much about movies as I do. Being ill-informed, I was under the assumption the culturally insensitively titled The Karate Kid was playing in a theater near me. It wasn't.

Still jonesing for a dose of cultural insensitivity, I instead opted for the culturally insensitively cast Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. I had actually read some things about it, but outside of them being negative I didn't even remember anything particularly scathing. Hoping to mine some laughter out of the whole sordid affair, I sat down to let this gilded Pirates of the Caribbean sandblast over me. (Strangely enough, the little preview screen outside the theater showed STREET DANCE 3D, but it was not to be, unfortunately.)

Jake Gyllenhaal as the titular prince actually manages to be vaguely Arabic looking, something that can't be said for his adoptive brother, played by Coupling's Jeff.

It's like looking at Uday AND Qusay at the same time! Strangely coincidental, the fellow who's walking next to Jeff there is Jack Davenport, another Coupling alumnus who managed to get in a big Disney Hollywood epic as Norrington in the Pirates series.

Besides racial insensitivity and religious pussyfooting (the movie can't seem to decide whether the Persians are mono- or polytheistic, and even then any deities are only referred to as "the gods" or "God"), the film also takes a firmly sexist stand in Gemma Arterton's princess Tamina. Alternately shrill, loud and annoying, the princess causes the deaths of many by not liking Jake very much and refusing to tell him what the deal is with this dagger... of time.

Luckily, the dagger... of time can actually turn back time, hence destroying every chance of drama that may have occurred. You can only turn it back a minute though! If you go back, like, a lot the world will end! But then they do and it doesn't and I'm like ehhhhh I wish I'd seen Street Dance 3D.

Props where props are due, though. Alfred Molina and his NGBAKA friend are actually pretty funny as the comic relief, and sometimes the music is pretty enough. I'm also quite sure the art designers had a blast making this.

The one instance where my friend and I were actually having a blast was when Jake gives his adoptive royal dad a cloak for tribute. My friend whispered to me: "Watch out! It's poisoned!" and then the poor Bernard Hill lookalike king actually started melting from it. Giggles turned to outright guffaws when a courtier shouted: "THE CLOAK! IT'S POISOOOOOOONED!"

The bad guy has a literal trouser snake. But he's still boring. How the fuck, right? Don't see this.