Monday, March 9, 2009

Tomato Puree

Using the new invention of Twitter (a form of communication similar to the telegraph in the early days communication, except, with Twitter, you can impart information of incredible insignificance to anyone that follows your "tweets". ex: for instance, imagine this message tapped out in the late 1800s - "1st National Bank robbed (stop) presumed to be The James Gang (stop) approximately $20,000 stolen from safe (stop) also, had tasty ham sandwich for lunch (stop) mustard, no pickle) THE FUTURIST! has been in communication with John Lichman, freelance film writer and human distillery. Lichman is leaving this land of seasonal depression for the land of sun and smiles that only cloak non-seasonal depression. His departure is due to his joining the staff of Current TV's Rotten Tomatoes Show.

The show's hosts, Brett Erlich and Ellen Fox, provide snappy rapid Hawksian verbal quips and playful banter about the films in review. The show, also, requires the participation of the audience to contribute web-cam reviews and three-word reviews of films in discussion. The premiere episode provided three films in review that allowed the hosts to legitimately critically opine, but, also, insert comical asides, jabs and rabbit punches. THE FUTURIST! found the show to move very fast, maybe too fast, and the sounds and effects interspersed reminded him of those cable news shows that have sound effects and graphics that whoosh and boom and sweep across the screen to herald a story about a snow storm warning. The web-cam reviews were annoying. Understandably, Rotten Tomatoes relies on the Internet audience to rate films a la their TomatoMeter, but seeing those mugs shoved in front of their web-cams trying to be funny and think they are getting their "star turn" was a waste of time. Do we care what some guy, leaning into his computer screen, described as "comedian" feels about Street Fighter II, especially when what he feels is actually some supposed hilarious lines he wrote to impress us with how funny he is? No. No. No. THE FUTURIST! would rather take the more appealingly presented hosts (nice hair, Ellen Fox. Don't shed that 3 day growth, Brett Erlich, and fine tilting of the head in a sardonic manner) who are well-made up by the Current TV make-up department and now how to read and impart smart comedy.

The sidebar topic presented on films derived from video games was entertaining. The presentation was full of fact and funny. Whoever wrote this segment knows their video games and their insane film incarnations. One would think Lichman was already a staff writer. Ellen Fox's segment on the Top Five Conspiracy films gave us several films from the paranoid cinematic 70s and she knew her stuff. THE FUTURIST! loves a woman who knows The Parallax View and who, also, reports her guilty pleasure film from behind a garbage dumpster; a visually ironic delight.

Then there is the three word review segment. This is a feature THE FUTURIST!, himself, tried to contribute. Yes, he tried. He provided many tri-grouped bits of attempted comedy and tweeted them directly to Lichman. Oh, he was pleased. He especially was in awe of THE FUTURIST!'s entry on Taken. The review was "Schindler's Hit List". It did not air. What about his 3 words on The International? ... "Owen Money Back"? Nada. No cigar. Could this color THE FUTURIST!'s critical eye of The Rotten Tomatoes Show? Never. THE FUTURIST! is a better man than that and will watch this show again. And he wishes the best of luck to Mr. John Lichman. Knowing his humor and interests, THE FUTURIST! expects the show to be even better. Three Word Review? "Lichman make better" and the review after the show's work is done for the day? "Lichman will drink."

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