Sunday, September 14, 2008

Wonder Twins Movie Review: Battle In Seattle

The Wonder Twins Review: Battle In Seattle

My sister D’Anne, also a freelancer, occasionally gets unsolicited review copies of movies in the mail for her consideration. Tonight, we watched the new Woody Harrelson/Charlize Theron movie Battle In Seattle, a film so important, DHL sent it next day delivery. How did we feel about our viewing experience? Well, in order to cleanse ourselves of the incident, we decided to debrief with our first Wonder Twins movie review....

D'Anne: Do you remember when the WTO protests happened in Seattle?
Laura: I do now.
D: Meaning you’d forgotten?
L: No, meaning I did not realize the bulk of the responsibility for the protests fell on the shoulders of Andre 3000.
D: Um...
L: This was a documentary, right?
D: No. A documentary might have actually been good.
L: Why did you make us watch this movie?
D: Because I got it for free in the mail. When I first heard about it I thought it was going to be a documentary. Then I learned that Charlize Theron was in it. And Woody Harrelson. And Norah Jones...
L: It wasn’t Norah Jones. It was Michelle Rodriguez.
D: Oh. Well, I thought I read that in the PR info. And then even after realizing it wasn’t her I couldn’t bring myself to believe it.
L: You were in Norah Jones denial. Regardless, any movie based on a recent political left-leaning event starring Charlize Theron and Woody Harrelson should raise immediate red flags.
D: Yes. As should any movie touting an “ensemble cast.”
L: Yes. Oh! Unless it is Steel Magnolias. Moving on, what did you learn about the World Trade Organization from this film?
D: That people in cardboard turtle hats don’t like it. That tear gas stings your eyes. And that the governor of Washington is Asian.
L: I learned that the protests leveled against the WTO showed, on a macro level, that there is a lot of homegrown grassroots opposition against it. I also learned that, on a micro level, these same homegrown people have such emotionally vapid, bullshit filled conversations that although the police clearly went overboard, I myself wanted to smack them. The feeling of wanting to smack some of those people welled up in me many times during the film.
D: Yes. The film inspired violence. In the audience. Against the movie. Especially when Andre 3000 tried to get the bus full of arrested protestors to join him in a rendition of “Don’t Worry Be Happy.” I’ve never before wanted to be arrested, but I wish I had been on that bus to kick him in the nuts.
L: If there’s any song that would incite people to violence, it would be that particular song.
D: Amen.
L: Let’s try to sum this movie up.
D: Okay. You first.
L: Charlize Theron was in Seattle during the World Trade Organization protests and the World Trade Organization, um, what would you call it? A meeting? A conference? A gathering? A powwow...
D: A powwow, yes...
L: All right. She was unaware of the powwow or the protests because she lives inside a mall where she sells expensive bags and expensive things to expensive people. She’s also, it turns out, five months pregnant, which means that she’s very excited about bringing a new life into this world because it will expand her worldview to include Baby Gap...
D: ...which provides her with an excuse to ditch work to shop with her co-worker friend.
L: Yes. That is probably as close as she has ever come to sticking it to the man.
D: True. The man, i.e. Woody Harrelson, stuck it to her. Seeing that she’s pregnant and all.
L: You are dirty. Maybe you should mention that bald Woody Harrelson is her husband in the movie.
D: You just did.
L: He knows about the scary world outside of the mall, because he is an officer of the law. I found it very creepy that he looked exactly the same as he did in Natural Born Killers and yet he was playing a cop.
D: Yes. A cop who hits hippie kids with nightsticks.
L: Anyway, the WTO police standoff got so heated that the people inside the mall were forced to stop shopping and were shoved out into the streets.
D: The part where they were forced to stop shopping was really intense. But since they had never been outside before, they had no idea where to go. And Charlize Theron got lost in the crowd of protesters.
L: In a horribly, unfortunate twist of fate (that nobody could’ve ever, ever predicted), pregnant Charlize Theron is hit with a nightstick in the belly. By a police officer.
D: Which sours her against her husband who is a police officer and all. So she goes and hides out at her mom’s.
L: And cries a lot.
D: Remember in Monster when she cried a lot and got all puffy in the face?
L: I didn’t see the movie so I don’t understand what that means.
D: You are dumb.
L: You are dumb. And I don’t think it is appropriate to be referring to a lesbian serial killer here. Charlize Theron is much more than that.
D: Anyway, what else happens in the Seattle movie? I can’t stomach much more of this.
L: Me either. There were bullhorns. There were arrests. There were a lot of hippies who looked like they smelled bad. There were poignant moments when the police officers looked into the faces of children and saw the future in their eyes before opening up a can of whoop ass on their parents with nightsticks and tear gas.
D: Stuart Townsend should be ashamed of this script. It’s sad that he made the people he’s trying to glorify with this movie look like such idiots.
L: I don’t really know about idiots so much as just self-righteous. It just gives peaceful protesters a bad name. People should rightfully be outraged about and reminded of what happened there, but this isn’t the vehicle that is going to cause that to happen.
D: No it isn’t. All this movie is going to outrage folks about is the $9 they forked over to see it. I recommend those who really want to see it wait until it’s on Lifetime.
L: Or when it is on DVD packaged as a “Charlize Theron: Based On A True Story” budget two-pack with Monster.


Anonymous said...

not sure what movie u 2 saw, but I saw it too at Seattle Fest and was blown away. it was fantastic. it might even get an oscar nomination this year I think. the only people who will be outraged by seeing this film will be people who love movies without intelligence or depth. so.......

Meghan Sitar said...

My second favorite review of this film (after yours, of course) is this gem I found on Rotten Tomatoes from Eric D. Snider: "Watching it is like being jabbed in the belly with a police baton, and not in a good way."

That Charlize Theron box set should really be a triple pack that includes "North Country."

D'Anne Witkowski said...

"Yeah, who ARE these cunts?"
John McCain

Laura said...

D'Anne -
Do not use that word. That is totally inappropriate. John McCain is a war hero - a status that gives him carte blanche "cunt usage authority." Have some respect.

And yes, this movie is very likely to get an Oscar nomination or two seeing as it is an even bigger steaming pile than "Crash."

Magic Pants Jones said...

I can't picture Charlize as anything other than Rita from Arrested Development anymore. If she was playing THAT character in the movie you two reviewed, I would absolutely see it.

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