Hi, I’m Mike S., and I’m a blockbusterholic. I’ve been a blockbusterholic since I was a much younger man. It didn’t matter what was playing; once the calendar changed and the weather warmed up you knew where to find me: back row of the theater, popcorn in hand, waiting to escape from the suburbs of Chicago into whatever was happening on screen for the next 105 minutes. And when I say it didn’t matter what was playing, I mean it; the man who typed this paid to see “The Golden Child.” Twice. When you’re young, finally going to the movies without your parents is liberating, a rite of passage. As the years passed the rite continued for me, becoming habit. One minute I was sitting through “Blade Runner”, wondering why Harrison Ford was reading as poorly as the football players in my sophomore English class, the next I was watching Heath Ledger elevate “The Dark Knight” from summer distraction to something much more memorable. For over thirty years I’ve loved movies, but I think most of all I’ve loved the experience of going to a movie. The distinct change in temperature when you walk in from a hot summer day, the smell of popcorn in the air, the excitement of what trailers you’re going to get; it’s like walking into a baseball stadium for a game, but without the worry of some jackass getting loaded and standing up in front of you the entire time. That excitement and love for the experience has led me to see virtually every film released every summer. That changed in 2009. Why, you ask? It’s been a combination of things… 1. I’m getting older I shudder to think that I’m entering the “you kids get off of my lawn” phase of my life, but it seems like every movie released this summer has been geared toward much younger people. And by “younger,” of course, I mean “stupider.” It started when “Wolverine” featured a guy with razor-sharp claws slicing maybe a hundred guys to ribbons, yet NOT ONE DROP OF BLOOD WAS SHED. Really? I know the CGI was so bad that they LOOKED like Nerf claws, but I didn’t realize the plot called for them to actually BE Nerf claws. 2. The movies have been awful “Star Trek” was middling. The aforementioned “Wolverine” was a colossal disappointment. “Year One”? Seriously? Who’s the development guy who bought that pitch? “You ready to get hard? It’s a history-based comedy aimed directly at a demographic whose entire lives revolve around getting to this time of year so they can stop thinking about history for three months! Kids love to have their faces rubbed in things they hate!” “I’m at balsa …who’s in it?” “Jack Black and Superbad Johnson! “I’m approaching oak… “Here’s the best part – we put them in the distant past, yet have them act exactly like they always have in every other film they’ve been in! No effort whatsoever! Just two famous faces wearing crazy costumes! It’s like we don’t even have to care, we’re just printing fucking money!” “I’m at full fucking maple, and we are a go! Now, anything for summer, 2010?” “Three words: Rogen. Apatow. Algebra.” “Good Lord; what’s harder than maple? Other than my dick for that idea?”
Read Part II
Mike Schmidt’s podcast “The 40 Year Old Boy” is available in iTunes or via subscription at mikeschmidtcomedy.com/podcast.asp. Mike can also be found at facebook.com/the40yearoldboy, twitter.com/the40yearoldboy and mikeschmidtcomedy.com. For all the plugs Mike has, he should really be more successful.