Your letters. My smartass replies.The Steady Leak
may not be so steady these days, but your letters have been, so I must
share them and answer them so that the wheels keep turning on this
crazy little bitch. Feel free to ask whatever about whomever or
whatever, and I’ll do my best to answer it. Letters in here might be
positive, negative, or indifferent and I’ll try to maintain a balance.
Please keep sending them in (SEND A LETTER), as it’s you who fuels this column. With that said, here we go….

Come around here often?

Another One of Gotham’s Defeated.

Mitch to the left!Brian writes:

The past few years have brought
a huge influx of foreign movies to our continent. While this trend is something
I applaud, I think the studios are going to end up causing an "average film fan"
backlash due to the way they market them. It seems the cool thing to do is to
run all sorts of TV ads and trailers but fail to mention to people that THEY
MIGHT HAVE TO READ during this movie.

I think I got irked over this
once before, but apparently let it go, but the recent avalanche of commercials
for High Tension has resurfaced this pet peeve. The commercials do
whatever they can to avoid mentioning the fact the it is foreign. I know there
have been several movies over the past three years or so that this has happened,
films like Hero.
I remember hearing from my
friends, who still like to race tractors, that Hero looked good because
they love "kung fu" movies. While this almost made me throw up in my mouth, I
was excited about the potential of some art in their lives. After seeing it, and
probably downing a few Natural Lights, I recall them bashing it because "I
didn’t realize I was gonna have to read all the way through it".

Do you think movie studios do
this on purpose so they do not hurt their opening weekend grosses? Since I am a
geek, and a spoiler to me is something that tells a vital plot point to an
upcoming movie and not something I can putty onto my cheap foreign car, I
usually know when a film is going to have subtitles. But having spent over ten
years as a movie theater manager, I know that the majority of the people with
$8.50 in their pocket that walk into the theater have no clue as to what they
are about to see.

Is this something I should be
losing sleep over, or should I just accept that the world is is on a one way
track to no-brained action films? On a side note, should I be worried that I
wrote a "movie" website to get an opinion I could easily make

Nick’s Reply: Of course the studios do it intentionally. They have to, or idiots will skip the film simply because it involves reading. That’s before you find those people that won’t see it because it’s French and therefore an act of terrorism. You know, the people who buy Larry the Cable Guy CD’s. It’s a wise decision by the studios because storytelling crosses international lines a lot better than people and I think a lot of people need to be a captive audience before realizing how great it is on the "other side" creatively.


Come around here often?

You Smell a Ratner.

Mitch to the right.DAFassett writes: You guys have seemed to lose your balls a little, which is probably a good sign,
cause it means your site is doing well, and you’re acquiring real opportunities,
which naturally brings along w/ it a cowardice to not bite the potential hand
that feeds you and all that. But of course Ratner eliminates the film from
serious consideration.

Nick’s Reply: Our balls are still attached to our prickstalks, thank you. I don’t have a problem with Ratner on X3, because I really don’t expect it to be some life-changing film no matter who’s at the helm. I really feel that they have a cast and property that can sustain itself above and beyond the ego and style of a director. Bryan Singer included. Aside from the subtle gay allegory, what about the first two films was really aggressively the director’s? Singer’s strength is in how he told the story, not in his directorial flourishes. By the time you reach a third installment, unless it’s Harry Potter where the best film was made in the three hole, what do you expect? I expect Wolverine to kick ass gruffly. I expect to see some nice effects. I expect a rehash of mutant hate from society. Little else. Ratner should be able to do his job without trying to "Ratnerize" it too much. Plus, I’m the only one who didn’t bitch. So, maybe I don’t have balls but Devin seems to agree with you here.


Come around here often?

Shark Attack!

Mitch to the left!Guy writes

What’s the latest on Meg? Any casting devolpments? Anything you want to tell us? I am eagerly anticipating this release of such a great book that I for one cannot wait for it. Hope it does well. Well, actually it will do well. Cause your involved that’s why.

Nick’s Reply: Well, if the readers of IMDB’s message boards were any indicator, we’d have A-Listers like Tia Carrere and Pat Morita starring in the film but we’re not at that phase in the production yet. Shane Salerno has taken the concept of Meg from Steve Alten’s book and script and created something new and totally cinematic that ought to please people who loved the themes from the book, people who didn’t, and the people who have no idea what it is. The movie will be quite a surprise in a good way for audiences. That said, we have a few more hurdles before casting. If the movie’s a hit, I think most people will know it wasn’t because some short hairy webmaster was involved.


Come around here often?

Mail Bonding.

Mitch to the right.Christopher writes:

Thanks for everything that you guys do with the site. I noticed the letters this week about screenings, and I thought that I’d put in my two cents worth. I started checking out the site in 99. I was going to grad school in Chicago, and my wife and I were living in an undergrad dorm–we were sort of the adult presence there–organizing activities and spending time with 50 or so students that lived in our house. I had just come back from two years of fieldwork in Japan (I’m an anthropologist), and I was two years behind on movies and pop culture. I had a couple of students who were total film
freaks, and they turned me on to One of the other benefits of living in Chicago was that there were a million great theaters–my college had a fantastic film series and there were great pop and art theaters all over town. While I was in school, studios started having early screenings and openings on campus–people like Woody Allen and Kevin Spacey would show up for films and then hang around to talk with the audience. One of the most interesting was an early screening of "Crouching Tiger," with Ang Lee and James Schamus answering questions and talking about movies after the screening. I got spoiled.

Then I graduated and got a job in North Carolina. Life was a lot different–suburbia after the city, lots of mall multiplexes instead of neighborhood art houses and great old theaters. Shortly after I got here in NC, I started reading your coverage of Hellboy. I was a long-time Hellboy fan, and really eager to see the film. When you guys had a screening in Raleigh, I got tickets. My wife, two daughters (both big comic and movie fans) and I had a fantastic time at the screening. It was a chance to sit in the theater with a bunch of other people who were there because they wanted to see this particular film, because they believed in Hellboy, not because they were bored on a weeknight. I really value that chance. There are some other chances like this–Durham (next door to Chapel Hill, where I live) has a good horror festival in the winter, and I get together with some of my buddies from college who live down here and catch some new films. Still, I really look forward to your screenings and I would be disappointed if you stopped them. A site like chud is great because people from all over the world can get together on the internet and talk about their interests.

Still, it is nice to have a real chance to get together too. It’d be great if you could keep it going.

Take care–good luck with all of your projects.

Nick’s Reply: Thank
you. The screenings aren’t going away any time soon, but you just have to understand that even with people sending in SASE’s the process is still excruciating. I got in from softball around 12:15 last night and sorted envelopes, opened envelopes, stuffed envelopes, and made stacks for each city and each movies until around 2:30am. Just to give folks free movies. I’ve gotten some nice comments after that letter response, but it’s astounding how obviously some people use the site for free shit AND NOTHING ELSE. Being a Mom & Pop organization, it smarts.


Come around here often?

Moore or Less.

Mitch to the left!Sammy writes:

I keep hearing one of the wachowski brothers had a sex change. is this true?
also: will anyone at the site do a dvd review of BAD BOY BUBBY?
and lastly: how about updating the readers on alan moore’s public condemnation of the V FOR VENDETTA script? the world deserves to know!
the site is awesome by the way…since discovering it, I can barely stomach any other movie news site.

Nick’s Reply: Honestly, I could give a fuck what Alan Moore has to say about anything film related. He’s such a condescending asshole in interviews that I totally zone out when he talks about film. Great writer, but not a man who I have any respect for these days in anything else. Worse yet, he seems to threaten his fans every other year with quitting the business to go be wizened somewhere. I’ll take Morrison or Rucka or Azarello over Moore now. It’s a shame really. As for the Wachowski gossip, the info’s out there but we don’t do that kind of talk here.


Come around here often?

Old Folks.

Mitch to the right.Brad writes:

Sorry to say this but do you know who you sound like when you complain about
stupid fashion trends like kids with their arses hanging out or collar turned
up? Your parents. Same thing when you go on about how stupid nu-metal or the
latest pop song is. It reflects that you have reached that age where you can’t
relate to what the latest generation of teens are into.

It was the same
when you were a teenager and your parents complained about your crap music and
strange fashion sense. And when these teens with their jeans around their dicks
and farting monkey ringtones grow old they’re gonna be baffled at the style and
music of their kids. That’s why they’re trends… They keep changing.

Best thing to do is accept it as a fad that you’re too old to be plugged
into. Be thankful that you’ve reached an age where you realise that being cool
is a lot more than the just clothes you wear or the music you listen to.

Nick’s Reply: I liked my parent’s music. Most of the time I wore a t-shirt and jeans. Same as now. I’m not a pioneer, but I’ve been this boring most of my years. Not everyone is a piece of clay to be molded by their surroundings throughout their lives. I think that the most powerful tool we have as people is the gift of observation. Watch the people around you at work, school, or out in town for a little while and the smoke screens should be broadcast to you. Common sense is timeless, and that’s sort of where I was going with the article.


Come around here often?

Telepod = Nick AND Devin.

Mitch to the left!Ric writes:


After reading your
review I have to say that it’s one of the best I’ve ever read. Ya didn’t just
rip it a new one…this review was a well-thought, brilliantly worded piece of
art. And that’s a mouthfull considering the subject matter…but man, ya sure
pulled this one off in a big way. I gotta say, the remark about James Cromwell
re-doing his bathroom was classic, but the next remark about him keeping his
head up while the shit is slowy rising around him…well, I had to get up and
walk away from the keyboard. Too funny dude, but ironically

Your remarks about
Burt Reynolds were unreal spot-on. It’s refreshing to read something about him
that doesn’t bash him, his marriage/divorce to Loni Anderson, his physiology, or
his career choices. Yeah, he did have *superior* film-selection skills (Terms
of Endearment, anyone?), but those of us who are old enough to remember him in
his prime see him differently than other, less older folks who never experienced
his glory days. Watch an old ep of Gunsmoke, ya can’t help but like the guy.
Charming rogue…well chosen words. And the original version of TLY has more
than just nostalgia for me…much of the film was shot at Reidsville Prison,
about 20 miles from my hometown in southeastern Georgia. Many of my friends’
fathers were in the film, ranging from guards, inmates, to players. And I have
to admit…Reynolds clockin’ the one guard in the ‘nards with the bullet pass
*twice* still cracks me up after all these years. Not that I get off on ball
shots, but I played football and believe me, a "bullet" pass can do serious
damage if the point of the football hits you in the solar plexes, much less
where the sun don’t shine. So yeah, those of us who huddled up on the gridiron
cringed heartily at that scene…not unlike in An Officer and a Gentleman (a
horrible film, but probably the greatest ‘nard shot ever filmed, other than
those skateboard wipeout videos of course….)

However, I must
disagree with your opinion that Carpenter’s Thing is better than the original.
For me, the original had the works…great story, realistic characters, brisk
overlapping diaglogue (that added to the realism), genuine creepiness, and Matt
Dillon as the monster! And all with very few special effects. But I
Thanks man, and keep
up the great work.

Nick’s Reply: I think you might have meant to send this to Devin, as I’ve not seen The Longest Yard. As for The Thing being better than the original Arness film, it is. Every day of the week and twice on Sunday. The Thing is one of the great films of ever, always, and forevermore. Better than some of the movies that have won Oscars and better than the good work being done by government employees on Atlanta’s roadways this very day. Better than meatloaf.


Come around here often?

My Biggest Fan

Mitch to the right.JSW writes:

Let me understand this for a minute. People who like OLDBOY such as CHUD readerrs. Are somehow better people than those who watch Desperate Housewives? Do you pull this shit out of your ass or does living in Atlanta do this to a person? I swear to god. Everyone one of your contemparies has quirks or horrible TV presenter voices. Yet you guys are so self-referential sometimes it borders on lunacy.

The fun thing. As a Desperate Housewives fan, as a guy who watched every episode, that finale absolutely sucked. You spend a whole year watching a show narrated by a murderer. Not only that, but it ends with a cliffhaner. Where the possible child of Mike Delfino might kill him as he walks through the door? Marc Cherry laid an egg. I just hope the Alfrie Woodard storyline does not suck as much as the one with Mary Alice.

Have a nice day, and may you keep on believing you are better than everyone else.

Nick’s Reply: I think people who like Oldboy more than Desperate Housewives have better taste, but I don’t think they’re better people. What you think of movies has nothing to do with your value as a person. How you carry yourself in the real world does, and sadly a lot of the people you’d expect to be on the up and up fail to be and there’s those people who suck online that are great off the web. Take you for example. You might be the most centered and cool guy in real life that there is but I’ll never know because I only know you as a steady rain of piss on my parade. Have a nice day yourself.


Come around here often?

This Business.

Mitch to the left!David writes:

How do you get into the movie reviewing business?

Nick’s Reply: Ask a filmmaker and they’ll tell you the easiest way is to fail at filmmaking. Ask another reviewer and they’ll look jealously at you and then overeat some more. Or, as I’ve been able to see from some of the rural reviewers who think they’re big shit… they’ll tell you it’s about passion and integrity and then go back to the East Tits Revue and rip on some action flick. Ask a journalist and they’ll ask why the Hell you’d want to. Ask a music critic and they’ll take their lips off of Thom Yorke’s cock and say "huh?". Ask a priest and he’ll say you’re beyond salvation. Ask Rawhead Rex and he’ll say "Errrr Lasssshhh!" and piss on that priest. Honestly, there’s no right answer. Anyone with a web address or a blog thinks they’re a movie critic these days. I’d ask you to hone your writing skills and write. Write. Write. Write. Share it. Get feedback (if people will give it), and see what happens. I guess writing for a college paper helps but once again, writing for a college paper doesn’t impress most people. Once the studios want you at the press screenings for your opinion, you’ve done something right. Or you’re a good shill.


Come around here often?


Mitch to the right.Michael writes:

On Julia Roberts: I don’t think she’s a good actress (she always just seems like herself), and even if her movies are considered good by some people, most of them are terrible in my opinion. But that being said, I don’t hate her. I just think she’s ugly, annoying, and not especially talented.

However, that only makes her popularity more impressive… I won’t give her credit for being a bad, duck-faced actress, but I will for being successfull. People who hate her just because she’s popular are wasting their hate. If you don’t understand why people love her, then fine, but does that mean you have to hate her? I guess if you’re a lonely nerd on the internet, the answer’s usually yes… I used to hate her until I realized she wasn’t really worth it. There are probably millions of people whom we should be despising before her.

Anway, let the people who like her work give her credit for it. I’ll give her credit for succeeding against all odds.

Nick’s Reply: Do you personally spend time with Julia Roberts so that you know how she is around the house? If so, congrats. I’ve been to her home town of Smyrna but I don’t hang with her. Duck faced? DUCK FACED? If she was indeed duck faced I think her popularity would be even grander. Here’s the thing, and I’m as guilty as anyone what with my alien abduction Devon Aoki comments and my majestic forehead Christina Ricci things but we have become so picky as a culture with our movie stars that it’s a miracle anyone escapes our wrath. It’s why people like Lindsay Lohan go from curvy and natural to rail-thin and unrecognizable. Anyhow, we disagree. I don’t think she’s a bombshell, but she’s prone to moments of irresistability, and it ain’t about her teeth or face.


Come around here often?


Mitch to the left!Alphonso writes:

My girlfriend loves the results, but she doesn’t know what I do. She thinks it’s natural -Thomas, CA

I’ve been using your product for 4 months now. I’ve increased my length from 2 inches to nearly 6 inches. Your product has saved my sex life. -Matt, FL

Pleasure your partner every time with a bigger, longer, stronger Unit

Realistic gains quickly

Mr. Grunt and Point’s Reply: Wait, so we too can deceive our loved ones with your product? Awesome! I love betraying the trust of those I love! As for the size, it takes me about eight seconds to go from two inches to six, so I have you beat. Getting it from six to eighteen, that’s another story.

Discuss this new feature on our message boards.