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This week:
Meet the Robinsons

Filthy says:
"Turd's really look like turds in 3-D!!"

Man, I love 3-D. I saw this deep sea movie in three dimensions a couple years ago and about two-thirds of the way into it the little kids practically wet themselves when a shark leapt out of the screen chasing a little flounder. I didn't have the fancy glasses because I had snuck in, but I could see enough to know what was going on and I had enough Mickey's Malt Liquor in me to imagine I was seeing things chasing me, too.

I heard once that they made a porno in 3-D and I thought that would be pretty cool. Not because I want tits and dicks swinging at my head, but because the old blue-red-glasses 3-D is sort of blurry so you can't see the razor burn on women's crotches, the hand-shaped bruises on their ribs and arms, or the tiny white pimples in the wet corners of their mouths. Besides, fuzziness adds to an object's mystique. Why else would people be so obsessed with bears? And Turkish candy?

Anyway, I had a lot of goodwill toward the gimmick of 3-D going into Meet the Robinsons on Friday. I was really looking forward to seeing it and getting free glasses. It's not playing in 3-D everywhere, so I couldn't go to the local Olde Towne Cinemae here in Arvada. Hell, they have a hard enough time just showing things in two dimensions. Sometimes they give you a little more height than width, or vice versa. And sometimes you have to keep current on current trends in quantum mechanics and imagine that while all you're seeing is a white line across the screen, some heretofore unknown dimension comprised of materials we have yet to discover is getting the rest of the movie.

Allow me to digress for a moment to ponder that. Yeah, I know I can do that on my own time, but I have important shit to do then. So, you sit there, and I'll do this. Did you know that there is increasing acceptance in scientific communities of the existence of dimensions beyond those we understand? What dimensions do we know of? Width, depth, height, time and smell? What if those were only an infinitesimally small part of what made up the universe? You can't even think in the terms we understand of things being parallel, adjacent or near each other. Your body may exist in 40 dimensions and you're only aware of a few and the elements and compounds that reside in it. Your other dimensions have things besides neutrinos and quarks. Shit scientists like to call "dark matter" because they have no idea what it is. And scientists think this is true because at the subatomic level they can actually document "dark matter" and even what could be ripples in the time-space continuum. Do you understand the implications, how major this could be for our lives? This means, at its most profound level, that there are ways of getting loaded we have not even discovered yet. Or that coming home at 4 a.m. and crying while playing Air Supply records might upset your wife in this dimension, but it might make your other wives in the other dimensions give you a blow job. On your three-thousand-foot-long dick.

That's fucking deep. Something Meet the Robinsions isn't, really. Man, what a loud, manic, unfocused, good-looking heap. This kiddie cartoon suffers from a lack of restraint that took over when nobody could think of a way to flesh out the 45 minutes of story into an hour and twenty minutes or so.

In present-day New York, Lewis is a twelve-year old orphan with a penchant for inventing gadgets. A creepy guy comes from the future to steal his science fair project, and then a kid, Wilbur Robinson (also from the future), follows to stop the creepy guy. They all travel in time machines to the future, where Lewis discovers that the creepy guy is his old disgruntled orphanage roommate all grown up and resentful toward Lewis, who has grown up to be a successful inventor. In fact, he invented the time machines, and his own son is Wilbur, who came to the past to get him.

There's some heartwarming shit about an orphan learning to stop wishing for a family because he gets one in the future, but even that theme feels secondary to the onslaught of gags and images geared for a kid with ADD on crack. There is a dinosaur, singing frogs, a mother who teaches the frogs, a grandfather who loses his teeth, a grandmother who I still have no idea what her role was, a fat guy with no lines, a lame food fight, a pizza delivery guy, school teachers, scientists, talking robot hats and on and on.

Some of that shit would have been fun, but the whole middle of the movie is nothing but "wacky" diversions piled as deep as dead bodies in the Ganges. None of it is particularly funny because you can see the desperation and flop sweat on the gags.

It all looks sort of cool. The movie has a retro-futuristic vision, like The Jetsons or Tomorrowland at Disneyland. People travel in bubbles or bubble-top spaceships. They have robots and elastic lawns. That would be a cool background, but in the absence of a story, the movie designers go apeshit and overwhelmed me gimmicks and gadgets and goofy shit like pneumatic tubes, hidden doors and tons of Rube Goldbergesque crap. Sort of like getting trapped in a Spencer's Gifts for an hour too long.

For forty minutes, I sat there wondering when we would get to the plot, or what exactly the plot is. Finally, the story flattens out toward the end and gets much better. Take the middle part out, and you have a decent kids's story, but not a feature-length movie. And this turd comes up short even with a 1953 Donald Duck cartoon beforehand. No studio is interested in a good story they can't make money off of. Meet The Robinsons is yet another example, along with Polar Express and those godawful Dr. Seuss adaptations that they would rather ruin a good story and make money.

Two Fingers for Meet the Robinsons. Oh yeah, the 3-D is clear to look at, but not used to much effect.



Mike Sargent of WBAI Radio

Music and Lyrics is "Laugh-out-loud funny!"

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is "The most fun you will have at the movies all year. These turtles rock!"

Filthy's Reading
Seymour Hersh - Chain of Command

Listening to
Smog - Supper


For Your Consideration