2008 Film Journal

As per my 2007 Journal, videos and DVDs are in italics. Films I saw for the first time have an asterisk (*) next to them. Not counting extras and promo items.

Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec

Jan 1 — Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story *
Jan 3 — Camelot [1967] *
Jan 3 — One Missed Call [2008] *
Jan 4 — Flock of Dodos: The Evolution-Intelligent Design Circus *
Jan 5 — Smile [1975] *
Jan 5 — The Chronological Donald: Volume 3: 1947 – 1950 [disc 2] *
Jan 7 — Zodiac [2007; director's cut]
Jan 7 — The Exorcism of Emily Rose [unrated version; w/ audio commentary]
Jan 9 — The Bucket List *
Jan 11 — Destination Moon [1950] *

Jan 11 — Away from Her *
Jan 12 — Bullets over Broadway
Jan 14 — The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything: A VeggieTales Movie *
Jan 16 — Cloverfield *
Jan 17 — Martian Child [w/ audio commentary]
Jan 17 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 1]
Jan 18 — In Bruges *
Jan 20 — Saving Sarah Cain *
Jan 21 — U2 3D *
Jan 21 — The Hoax [2006] *

Jan 23 — Rambo [2008] *
Jan 24 — Resident Evil: Extinction *
Jan 27 — Two Weeks Notice *
Jan 28 — The Deer Hunter *
Jan 28 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 2] *
Jan 28 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 3] *
Jan 30 — The Inquiry [2006; aka The Final Inquiry]
Jan 31 — The Diving Bell and the Butterfly [2007] *
Jan 31 — Jason and the Argonauts [1963]
Feb 1 — One Million Years B.C. *

Feb 2 — No End in Sight *
Feb 3 — The Devil Came on Horseback *
Feb 8 — El Cid [1961] *
Feb 8 — 3:10 to Yuma [1957] *
Feb 9 — The Spiderwick Chronicles *
Feb 9 — Blade Runner [2007 version]
Feb 10 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 4] *
Feb 11 — Jumper [2008] *
Feb 11 — Definitely, Maybe [2008] *
Feb 14 — Ratatouille

Feb 16 — Direktøren for det hele [aka The Boss of It All] *
Feb 17 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 1] *
Feb 17 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 1; w/ audio commentary]
Feb 18 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 1; w/ music-only track]
Feb 18 — Vantage Point *
Feb 18 — The Simpsons [season 10, disc 1] *
Feb 19 — The Simpsons [season 10, disc 2] *
Feb 19 — The Simpsons [season 10, disc 3] *
Feb 20 — The Simpsons [season 10, disc 4] *
Feb 21 — Curious George [2006] *

Feb 22 — Copying Beethoven *
Feb 23 — Superstar [1999] *
Feb 25 — The Other Boleyn Girl [2008] *
Feb 26 — Bella [2006] *
Feb 27 — Bug [2006] *
Feb 27 — Prozac Nation *
Feb 28 — Longford *
Feb 29 — Touch the Sound *
Feb 29 — Semi-Pro *
Mar 3 — The Bank Job [2008] *

Mar 4 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 2] *
Mar 4 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 2; w/ audio commentary]
Mar 4 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 2; w/ music-only track]
Mar 5 — 10,000 B.C. *
Mar 5 — To Be or Not to Be [1942] *
Mar 6 — To Be or Not to Be [1983] *
Mar 8 — Sands of Oblivion *
Mar 9 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 5] *
Mar 9 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 6] *
Mar 9 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 7] *

Mar 9 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 8] *
Mar 9 — Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles [episode 9] *
Mar 11 — The Ten *
Mar 12 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 3] *
Mar 12 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 3; w/ audio commentary]
Mar 12 — The Astronaut Farmer *
Mar 13 — Sicko *
Mar 14 — You Only Live Twice
Mar 15 — Conan the Barbarian *
Mar 17 — Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who! [2008] *

Mar 17 — Conan the Destroyer *
Mar 19 — Knocked Up [2007; unrated version]
Mar 20 — 30 Days of Night *
Mar 20 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 4] *
Mar 20 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 5 [disc 4; w/ audio commentary]
Mar 21 — Star Trek: Nemesis
Mar 23 — Close Encounters of the Third Kind [1977 version]
Mar 24 — 21 [2008] *
Mar 25 — Then She Found Me *
Mar 25 — Close Encounters of the Third Kind [1980 version]

Mar 25 — Octopussy
Mar 26 — Mouth to Mouth [2005] *
Mar 26 — Stop-Loss *
Mar 27 — Fantastic Voyage [1966]
Mar 28 — Close Encounters of the Third Kind [1998 version]
Mar 31 — Fireproof [2008; rough cut] *
Apr 1 — The Golden Compass
Apr 2 — Good Luck Chuck [unrated version] *
Apr 3 — Street Kings *
Apr 3 — Praying with Lior *

Apr 3 — Nim’s Island *
Apr 3 — The Ruins [2008] *
Apr 6 — Horton Hears a Who! [1970] *
Apr 7 — Forgetting Sarah Marshall *
Apr 8 — Minority Report
Apr 9 — The Sleeping Dictionary *
Apr 9 — Patton [1970] *
Apr 9 — Star Trek: First Contact
Apr 10 — The Gold Rush [1925; 1942 version]
Apr 11 — Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed

Apr 11 — Adam’s Rib [1949] *
Apr 12 — The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep
Apr 13 — Battlestar Galactica [2005; season 3, disc 1] *
Apr 14 — The Forbidden Kingdom *
Apr 17 — Standard Operating Procedure *
Apr 17 — Star Trek: First Contact
Apr 17 — Battlestar Galactica [2005; season 3, disc 2] *
Apr 18 — Jacob’s Ladder [1990] *
Apr 21 — Nailin’ it to the Church: Religious Satire and the Gospel According to the Wittenburg Door *
Apr 22 — Battlestar Galactica [2005; season 3, disc 3] *

Apr 22 — Battlestar Galactica [2005; season 3, disc 4] *
Apr 23 — Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay *
Apr 23 — Major Dundee [2005 version] *
Apr 23 — Sorcerer [1977] *
Apr 23 — Baby Mama *
Apr 23 — Battlestar Galactica [2005; season 3, disc 5] *
Apr 30 — Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story [unrated version]
Apr 30 — Battlestar Galactica [2005; season 3, disc 6] *
May 1 — Iron Man [2008] *
May 2 — Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation *

May 4 — The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe [2005; w/ video commentary]
May 6 — Ringers: Lord of the Fans *
May 7 — Son of Rambow *
May 7 — Unsettled [2006] *
May 8 — Khartoum *
May 8 — The Man Who Would Be King
May 10 — El Orfanato [aka The Orphanage] *
May 12 — Prince Caspian [2008] *
May 14 — The Three Musketeers [1973] *
May 15 — Alien Vs. Predator [theatrical version; w/ director's audio commentary]

May 17 — The Golden Compass [w/ audio commentary]
May 18 — Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull *
May 19 — The Descent [2005] *
May 19 — Flywheel [2003 version] *
May 22 — Stillet Licht [aka Silent Light] *
May 22 — Awake [2007] *
May 23 — Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
May 24 — Speed Racer [2008] *
May 25 — The Shop around the Corner *
May 26 — You Don’t Mess with the Zohan *

May 29 — Manufacturing Dissent
May 31 — Kung Fu Panda *
Jun 2 — Young People Fucking *
Jun 6 — Untraceable *
Jun 7 — The World Is Not Enough
Jun 8 — The Living Daylights
Jun 9 — The Incredible Hulk [2008] *
Jun 10 — The Happening [2008] *
Jun 10 — Licence to Kill [1989]
Jun 12 — 27 Dresses *

Jun 14 — Die Another Day [2002]
Jun 15 — On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
Jun 16 — Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Jun 18 — Save Me [2007] *
Jun 18 — The Love Guru *
Jun 20 — GoldenEye
Jun 24 — The Day of the Triffids [1962] *
Jun 25 — Wanted [2008] *
Jun 25 — Tomorrow Never Dies
Jun 26 — Hancock [2008] *

Jun 28 — Peter Pan [1953]
Jun 28 — Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
Jun 30 — WALL·E *
Jul 1 — Journey to the Center of the Earth [1959] *
Jul 4 — Dr. No
Jul 5 — Kit Kittredge: An American Girl *
Jul 5 — Get Smart [2008] *
Jul 7 — Journey to the Center of the Earth [2008; 3D version] *
Jul 9 — Hellboy II: The Golden Army *
Jul 10 — For Your Consideration *

Jul 10 — Batman: Gotham Knight *
Jul 11 — Dead & Buried [1981] *
Jul 12 — Space Chimps *
Jul 14 — The Dark Knight [2008] *
Jul 20 — All About Us [2007] *
Jul 21 — Step Brothers [2008] *
Jul 23 — The Fall of the Roman Empire *
Jul 23 — The X-Files: I Want to Believe *
Jul 24 — Pineapple Express *
Jul 26 — Xanadu *

Jul 28 — Drillbit Taylor [unrated version] *
Jul 30 — Man on Wire *
Jul 30 — The Bank Job [2008]
Aug 2 — How to Steal a Million *
Aug 2 — The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor *
Aug 4 — Fireproof [2008]
Aug 6 — I’m Not There. *
Aug 6 — The Tracey Fragments *
Aug 7 — Tropic Thunder *
Aug 8 — Vicky Cristina Barcelona *

Aug 9 — Star Wars: The Clone Wars [2008] *
Aug 9 — Die Fälscher [2007; aka The Counterfeiters] *
Aug 13 — The Rocker *
Aug 13 — Mr. Smith Goes to Washington [1939] *
Aug 15 — The Longshots *
Aug 22 — Death Race [2008] *
Aug 24 — The Deal [2003] *
Aug 25 — Elegy [2008] *
Aug 27 — Dark City [1998; 2008 version]
Aug 27 — Searching for Debra Winger *

Aug 28 — Charlie Bartlett *
Aug 31 — Pooh’s Heffalump Movie *
Aug 31 — Quo Vadis [1951]
Sep 1 — Save Me [2007]
Sep 3 — Children of Men [2006]
Sep 3 — Switchblade Sisters
Sep 4 — Burn after Reading *
Sep 4 — Bottle Shock *
Sep 4 — Bangkok Dangerous [2008] *
Sep 5 — Casino Royale [2006]

Sep 6 — Shine a Light [2008] *
Sep 9 — Sztuczki [aka Tricks] *
Sep 9 — The Eternity Man *
Sep 9 — High School Musical *
Sep 10 — High School Musical 2 *
Sep 11 — Awake, My Soul: The Story of the Sacred Harp *
Sep 11 — Dernier maquis [aka Adhen] *
Sep 11 — Ghost Town [2008] *
Sep 12 — Igor [2008] *
Sep 12 — The Day of the Triffids [1981] *

Sep 13 — When Worlds Collide [1951]
Sep 14 — El cant dels ocells [aka Birdsong] *
Sep 15 — Blindness [2008] *
Sep 16 — Under the Hood: A Voyage into the World of Torture *
Sep 16 — The Story of Jacob and Joseph
Sep 17 — Musées secrets [aka Secret Museums] *
Sep 17 — The Longwang Chronicles *
Sep 17 — Lakeview Terrace *
Sep 18 — P.S. I Love You [2007] *
Sep 19 — Ne le dis à personne [aka Tell No One] *

Sep 19 — A Dérive [VIFF shorts program] *
Sep 20 — Waiting for Sancho *
Sep 21 — Desierto adentro [aka The Desert Within] *
Sep 22 — Miracle at St. Anna *
Sep 23 — Frenzy [1972] *
Sep 24 — Religulous *
Sep 24 — Sisters [1973] *
Sep 24 — Carrie [1976] *
Sep 24 — Eagle Eye *
Sep 26 — Appaloosa [2008] *

Sep 26 — The Duchess [2008] *
Sep 26 — Stone of Destiny *
Sep 26 — The Wrecking Crew [2008] *
Sep 27 — JCVD *
Sep 28 — True Blood [episode 1] *
Sep 29 — L’Heure d’été [aka Summer Hours] *
Sep 30 — Cooperage / Spartree / Nails / Summer Afternoon / In the Daytime *
Sep 30 — Il y a longtemps que je t’aime [aka I've Loved You So Long] *
Sep 30 — Üç maymun [aka Three Monkeys] *
Oct 1 — Wendy and Lucy *

Oct 1 — Flash of Genius *
Oct 3 — Billy: The Early Years *
Oct 4 — The Night They Raided Minsky’s *
Oct 6 — RocknRolla *
Oct 6 — Rachel Getting Married *
Oct 6 — Adoration [2008] *
Oct 8 — The Express *
Oct 8 — Sleeping Beauty [1959; w/ cine-explore commentary]
Oct 10 — W. [2008] *
Oct 10 — Passchendaele *

Oct 10 — An American Carol *
Oct 10 — Leatherheads *
Oct 14 — The Secret Life of Bees *
Oct 15 — Fantastic Voyage [1966; w/ music-only track]
Oct 15 — Role Models [2008] *
Oct 15 — Fantastic Voyage [1966; w/ audio commentary]
Oct 17 — High School Musical 3: Senior Year *
Oct 17 — Pride and Glory *
Oct 20 — Happy-Go-Lucky [2008] *
Oct 23 — The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas *

Oct 23 — Body of Lies *
Oct 23 — Beverly Hills Chihuahua *
Oct 23 — The Fall [2006] *
Oct 24 — Zack and Miri Make a Porno *
Oct 25 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 6 [disc 1] *
Oct 26 — Big Bad Mama *
Oct 27 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 6 [disc 1; w/ audio commentary]
Oct 27 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 6 [disc 1; w/ music-only track]
Oct 27 — Max Payne *
Oct 27 — Changeling [2008] *

Oct 28 — Linda Lovelace for President *
Oct 28 — Gospel According to Harry *
Oct 31 — Young@Heart [aka Young at Heart] *
Oct 31 — The Simpsons: Treehouse of Horror
Nov 1 — Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa *
Nov 1 — Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist *
Nov 1 — Patti Smith: Dream of Life *
Nov 4 — Babes in Toyland [1934; aka March of the Wooden Soldiers] *
Nov 4 — From Russia with Love
Nov 4 — Goldfinger

Nov 5 — Calendar [1993] *
Nov 5 — Thunderball
Nov 5 — Diamonds Are Forever
Nov 6 — Cars [2006]
Nov 6 — Slumdog Millionaire *
Nov 7 — Reservation Road *
Nov 7 — Big Bad Mama [w/ audio commentary]
Nov 8 — Casino Royale [1967; w/ audio commentary]
Nov 8 — The Passionate Friends [1949] *
Nov 8 — Brief Encounter [1945]

Nov 10 — Quantum of Solace *
Nov 10 — Captains of the Clouds *
Nov 11 — Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains [w/ actresses' audio commentary]
Nov 12 — Bolt [2008] *
Nov 16 — Madeleine [1950] *
Nov 16 — Dressed to Kill [1980; unrated version] *
Nov 17 — Milk [2008] *
Nov 17 — Synecdoche, New York *
Nov 17 — As Slow as Possible *
Nov 17 — Ben X [2007] *

Nov 18 — Frost/Nixon *
Nov 18 — The Pixar Story *
Nov 19 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 6 [disc 2] *
Nov 19 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 6 [disc 2; w/ audio commentary]
Nov 19 — Looney Tunes: Golden Collection Vol. 6 [disc 2; w/ music-only track]
Nov 19 — Bolt [2008; 3D version]
Nov 20 — Prince Caspian [w/ audio commentary]
Nov 21 — Shaun the Sheep: Off the Baa! *
Nov 22 — Smart People *
Nov 23 — This Happy Breed [1944]

Nov 23 — Hobson’s Choice [1954]
Nov 24 — Australia [2008] *
Nov 24 — The Sound Barrier [1952; aka Breaking the Sound Barrier] *
Nov 25 — The Song of Bernadette *
Nov 25 — WALL·E [w/ cine-explore commentary]
Nov 26 — Run Fatboy Run *
Nov 27 — Wing Commander [1999]
Nov 27 — The Cornerstone Festival: Twenty Years and Counting *
Nov 28 — 1984 [1956] *
Nov 29 — Twilight [2008] *

Nov 29 — Four Christmases *
Dec 1 — Revolutionary Road *
Dec 1 — Last Chance Harvey *
Dec 1 — Nineteen Eighty-Four [1984; american dvd version] *
Dec 1 — Sex and the City [2008] *
Dec 2 — Defiance [2008] *
Dec 2 — Gran Torino *
Dec 3 — Transporter 2 *
Dec 3 — Encounters at the End of the World *
Dec 3 — Nobel Son *

Dec 4 — Doubt [2008] *
Dec 4 — Angel and the Badman *
Dec 4 — Cleopatra [1934] *
Dec 4 — Punisher: War Zone *
Dec 5 — The Curious Case of Benjamin Button *
Dec 5 — Seven Pounds *
Dec 7 — The Day the Earth Stood Still [1951]
Dec 8 — Yes Man [2008] *
Dec 9 — The Day the Earth Stood Still [2008] *
Dec 10 — Valkyrie [2008] *

Dec 12 — The Reader [2008] *
Dec 13 — Transporter 3 *
Dec 14 — Wendy and Lucy
Dec 16 — All Together Now [2008] *
Dec 18 — Marley & Me *
Dec 18 — The Spirit [2008] *
Dec 18 — Delgo *
Dec 18 — Bedtime Stories [2008] *
Dec 19 — The Tale of Despereaux *
Dec 20 — Le ballon rouge [aka The Red Balloon, 1956] *

Dec 22 — Dragon Wars: D-War *
Dec 23 — The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Winds of Change *
Dec 24 — Holiday Inn *
Dec 24 — Edison & Leo *
Dec 24 — Shoot ‘Em Up [2007]
Dec 26 — Un conte de Noël [2008; aka A Christmas Tale] *
Dec 27 — The Chronological Donald: Volume 4: 1951 – 1961 [disc 1] *
Dec 27 — The Chronological Donald: Volume 4: 1951 – 1961 [disc 2] *
Dec 28 — Hoodwinked
Dec 28 — Casino Royale [2006]

Dec 29 — The Wrestler [2008] *
Dec 30 — Waltz with Bashir *
Dec 31 — No Country for Old Men [2007]

Canadian box-office stats — December 30

Here are the figures for the past weekend, arranged from those that owe the highest percentage of their take to the Canadian box office to those that owe the lowest.

The Golden Compass — CDN $8,050,000 — N.AM $58,869,000 — 13.7%
P.S. I Love You — CDN $2,140,000 — N.AM $23,398,000 — 9.1%
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street — CDN $2,110,000 — N.AM $26,719,000 — 7.9%
The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep — CDN $1,210,000 — N.AM $16,821,000 — 7.2%
Charlie Wilson’s War — CDN $2,470,000 — N.AM $34,506,000 — 7.2%
Aliens Vs. Predator: Requiem — CDN $1,920,000 — N.AM $26,880,000 — 7.1%
I Am Legend — CDN $13,680,000 — N.AM $194,575,000 — 7.0%
Juno — CDN $1,420,000 — N.AM $25,681,000 — 5.5%
National Treasure: Book of Secrets — CDN $6,480,000 — N.AM $124,035,000 — 5.2%
Alvin and the Chipmunks — CDN $6,280,000 — N.AM $142,375,000 — 4.4%

A couple of discrepancies: The Golden Compass was #5 on the Canadian chart (it was #12 in North America as a whole), while Enchanted was #10 on the North American chart.

My interest in The Lovely Bones just went up.


This may be old news to some people, but I just read this story by the Associated Press which notes that Saoirse Ronan, who is so compelling as the young Briony Tallis in Atonement, is playing the lead role in Peter Jackson’s adaptation of The Lovely Bones. I am suddenly quite a bit more interested in this film than I was before.

In semi-related news, Variety magazine recently ran an article on the curious similarities between Atonement and The Kite Runner, both of which feature “a terrible transgressive act by a child,” after which “the wronged parties are condemned to suffer through war and turmoil, while the children who wronged them — both of whom grow up to be writers — become aware of their ‘crimes’ as they mature and must make amends for their wrongs.”

Variety doesn’t mention it, exactly, but both films also feature the rape of a minor — as does The Lovely Bones, apparently. (Believe it or not, the rape is not the “terrible transgressive act” in either of the two films examined by Variety; in both cases, the rape is committed by someone else, and it is the catalyst for the “terrible transgressive act” committed by the child in question.)

PG ratings — still not really for grown-ups

Last year, I kept track of all the G- and PG-rated films that cracked the weekly top ten lists, to see how many of them were aimed primarily at families or children, and how many of them were basically for grown-ups. Six months ago, I posted a follow-up list of the G- and PG-rated films that had been released so far this year. Now, with the year basically over, it’s time to update the list.

The G- and PG-rated films that have cracked the weekly top ten lists so far break down into the following categories (with the ones that were #1 at the box office for at least one week in bold):

Family films (for children, tweens, or religious audiences):
  1. Happily N’Ever After
  2. Arthur and the Invisibles
  3. Bridge to Terabithia
  4. Amazing Grace
  5. TMNT
  6. The Last Mimzy
  7. Meet the Robinsons (G)
  8. Firehouse Dog
  9. Are We Done Yet?
  10. Shrek the Third
  11. Surf’s Up
  12. Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
  13. Nancy Drew
  14. Evan Almighty
  15. Ratatouille (G)
  16. Underdog
  17. Bratz: The Movie
  18. Daddy Day Camp
  19. The Game Plan
  20. The Seeker: The Dark Is Rising
  21. Bee Movie
  22. Fred Claus
  23. Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium (G)
  24. Enchanted
  25. August Rush
  26. Alvin and the Chipmunks
  27. The Perfect Holiday
  28. National Treasure: Book of Secrets
  29. The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep

Inspirational true-story sports movies set in the ’60s or ’70s:

  1. Pride

Films for grown-ups that just happened to be rated G or PG:

  1. The Astronaut Farmer
  2. Hairspray
  3. No Reservations
  4. Mr. Bean’s Holiday (G)
  5. Martian Child

As you can see, the bulk of the new films that got the G or PG rating in the United States have been “family” movies, just like last year.

Bizarre modernized biblical tales, times two.


Speaking of Britney Spears, Us Weekly reported a couple weeks back that she has been offered the part of the Virgin Mary in Sweet Baby Jesus, “a satirical retelling of the nativity story” that is being produced by Frenchman Philippe Rebboah:

The character Mary is a pregnant 19-year-old unsure of her baby’s paternity who goes into labor on Christmas Eve in Bethlehem, Maryland, as rumors swirl that the birth is Jesus Christ’s second coming.

Meanwhile, in completely unrelated news, Variety just posted a review by Robert Koehler of Johnny 316 (pictured above):

A true curio for Vincent Gallo’s hardcore fan club, vet musicvid director Erick Ifergan’s “Johnny 316″ takes Oscar Wilde’s “Salome” and transfers it to Hollywood Boulevard. This “Sally” never dances, but she does meander the boulevard in a movie that similarly wanders and never finds a groove, tone or point of view. The rather inspired central idea of Gallo as a modern-day John the Baptist goes undeveloped, with a ton of pretense in its wake. Well-received in Locarno, pic will lure fests with its indie name cast and may score with buyers at Euro art labels.

Lensed in 1998 (while Gallo was struggling to get completion funds for his first film, “Buffalo 66″), pic was then reworked with added shooting and finally finished in 2006 (with a corresponding copyright date). Gallo’s co-star Nina Brosh, who plays Sally, was one of the world’s hottest supermodels at the time of shooting, and seemed prime for a film career. Nine years later, Brosh has retired from modeling and showbiz for a quiet family life in her native Israel, leaving behind “Johnny 316″ as her only film credit. . . .

Roughly following some beats of Wilde’s bizarre drama, the script traces Sally’s initial fascination with the self-proclaimed holy man, her erotic attraction and his rejection, followed by her final act of vengeance. The vast difference with Wilde’s version (or with any other, even the compressed version in such films as Nicholas Ray’s “King of Kings“), is that this Salome’s reaction is so dramatically delayed that it seems to come out of nowhere.

As a work capturing the atmosphere of life on Hollywood Boulevard, “Johnny 316″ offers up a genuine time capsule of the street’s seedy, late-’90s condition before recent renovations. A slightly younger Gallo convincingly summons a spiritual and peaceful guy (in an ice cream suit), in what amounts to a solo performance. By contrast, Brosh looks out of her element. . . .

For what it’s worth, the IMDB currently has the film listed under its original, almost decade-old title Hollywood Salome (1998).

And hey, whatever became of Al Pacino’s Salomaybe?

How have I avoided seeing this until now.

And why couldn’t I have avoided it a little while longer. Ah well, I might as well share my pain. From the people who brought you Epic Movie — the extremely stupid-looking Narnia-spoofing flick that came out earlier this year, which I still have not seen — comes this trailer for Meet the Spartans, a spoof of 300, the tabloid exploits of Britney Spears, and who knows what else:

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