Thursday, June 19, 2008

Love Guru - every bit as bad as it looks?

Well, the reviews for The Love Guru are rolling in... So far, it's a whopping 11% on Rotten Tomatoes. And the vitriol leveled in said reviews is astounding. Frankly, I haven't read this amount of anger and bitterness since... well, since The Cat In The Hat back in 2003. My favorite blurb from that stinker (and one of my favorite review blurbs ever):

"They might as well have skipped the hassle of securing licensing rights and simply called this mess Mike Myers: Asshole in Fur." -- Gregory Weinkauf, Dallas Observer

There aren't any such gems yet, but it'll be worth checking out over the weekend (the blurbs, not the movie). My friend Randy Shaffer of DVDFuture attended a screening the other night in Ohio, and apparently the studio reps spent the running time sitting outside the theater and waiting for it to end. Anyway, he saw the movie, so I don't have to.

This could very well be the end of Mike Myers as a comic leading man. As I mentioned a few weeks ago, he has no goodwill or capital left in the live-action realm. He literally has not made a quality live-action comedy since the first (and still fantastic) Austin Powers: International Man Of Mystery back in May of 1997.

Some will say that Myers is no longer hip or cool as the comedy realm has been taken over by Judd Apatow and Will Farrell and their respective troops, but that's just absurd. Myers would have been fine had he made actual funny product. Austin Powers 2 was lousy, Austin Powers 3 was terrible, and The Cat And The Hat was horrifying. And apparently, so too is The Love Guru. No, in this case, Myers has only himself to blame and it will be interesting to see what he does afterward. Here's hoping that this once truly imaginative funny-man will regain the hunger that once fueled him.

Scott Mendelson

1 comment:

R.L. Shaffer said...

Hey, I'm finally posting a comment!

I'm writing in regards to your comment: "Some will say that Myers is no longer hip or cool as the comedy realm has been taken over by Judd Apatow and Will Farrell and their respective troops, but that's just absurd. Myers would have been fine had he made actual funny product."

As I'm someone who sort of feels this way I will defend such absurdity. Frankly, I don't feel Myers is a relevant (i.e. hip and cool) comedian anymore because he's out of material. It's not the vehicle, but the man driving. The Guru character could have been funny, but Myers jokes within that character fell flat, which forced Myers to use cheap, puerile jokes.

In truth, Myers has been reusing the same material (and character constructs really) since "Wayne's World" and "So, I Married an Axe Murderer" and got lucky with Austin Powers because people needed a funny Bond spoof, but he even pissed that away by the third film.

His gags are tired, boring and predictable and "Guru" was the stinky bile of a comedian who's run out of steam. I'm sure it'll happen to Apatow one day too. I think it's already starting to happen to Farrell (Both "Blades of Glory" and "Semi-Pro" felt a bit stale and phoned in). Comedians only have so many characters and so much material before it starts repeating itself and feeling stale. That happened with Myers years ago, it just took fans and critics a while to catch on.

I still remember my friend Allen Kellog complaining about him in high school nearly ten years ago. He said the same thing that critics are finally starting to say, or rather, shout...loudly. Myers is neither hip, nor cool. He's stale and cheap.

I don't imagine we'll see him in a leading man live action capacity in the near future. Hell, he may even piss away "Shrek" if the franchise keeps failing its fans like the third entry did.

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