Monday, June 21, 2010

Review: CrossBones (2005)

Directed By: Daniel Zirilli
Starring: Joseph Marino, Marya Soto, Hardy Hill

Okay, this review is from back in late 2009, one of the original bad movies I reviewed before I started this whole thing. Let's take a look:

I believe with this movie that they (whoever “they” are) have finally created the perfect torture weapon against enemy forces from other countries. This is a film so bad that it defies all convention, a film so atrocious in its nature that it makes me want to violently strangle and afterwards piss on the corpses of everyone involved in it. This film is so bad that it would take a lifetime to explain every ounce of what makes it so horrible – it is such a monumental task that the easier way out would be to simply deny the existence of technology as a whole and become a member of the Amish community to escape the film altogether.

What movie could possibly be bad enough to incite such a violent reaction? Well, let me introduce you to the bile-dripping horror that is CrossBones, a movie that is so awful that it couldn’t even pass as Pirates of the Caribbean 3’s toenail shavings, a movie so ghastly that the rap songs opening and closing it (this zombie movie, let me remind you; a rap song in a zombie movie) are the least offensive things about it. I would really love to keep on churning out euphemisms for how bad this is, but unfortunately that would not constitute a real review, so I must persevere for a bit longer.

This movie has a complete lack of anything resembling human intelligence and decency. You see how none of the names in this movie are big? There's a reason for that, and you're about to find out why. The plot is harebrained and has been done to death. The basic idea is a group of slutty, no-personality fashion model-lookalikes and racial stereotypes getting picked off one by one by an ancient curse-slash-serial killer in a remote location. How much more clich√© and stock can you get? Well, the movie decides to take it one step further and pander to the lowest common denominator by having all of the personality-deprived female characters wear nothing but bikinis, and by having the camera zoom in on their more tender regions far too often to be coincidental. Did they make this movie as some kind of a tonic to the fact that they can’t get girlfriends anywhere else? There is no point in having the female characters wear almost no clothing! There is not even any real nudity aside from a brief scene in the opening, so why bother? If you’re going to taunt viewers with the prospect of it, at least deliver; maybe then the movie would not be quite as puerile. That is pretty damn bad when the only possible way a movie could be redeemed is by pandering even lower than it already has.

And while I am at it, how did they get the ladies in this movie to sign up, anyway? Blackmail? Or did they really have such a low amount of self esteem that the only way they could feel good about themselves was starring in a movie where the camera zooms in on their breasts more than once?

Oh, and I can’t go without mentioning the character of – and I can’t believe I’m about to write this on paper – Greedy G. Yes, that was just as soul-crushingly insulting to me as it probably is to you. Greedy G, played by an “actor” credited only as J. Shin. His dialogue is comprised of idiotic black stereotypes that could not be any worse if they tried.

So the story starts off with a long, long, long backstory narrated in an awful fake sounding “scary” voice telling the story of a pirate named Red Bones who for some reason killed off all his crew members in his search for a supposedly legendary treasure that he is forced to bury in the sand on some remote island while he searches for more crew members to help him get the treasure out. So, really, why did he kill off his crew members in the first place? He finds some natives on the island who are in the process of drinking the blood of a helpless young girl and subsequently killing her. The natives attack Red Bones, shouting at him that his people had committed horrible inhuman atrocities on the native tribes in the area, and that they were now getting their revenge. Yes, inhuman atrocities. This coming from the mouth of the savage native leader who was just seen slaughtering a young girl not even two seconds beforehand.

We fast forward to the present day where a haughty forty-something British guy is taking his gorgeous twenty-something girlfriend on a car ride. She’s upset because instead of taking her on a romantic date like most normal heterosexual men would do, this guy wants to take her and a bunch of “contestants” (sure, that’s what they are…) out to film his “next” reality TV show. So, he’s had previous ones? How? As we see later on, he barely even films reality TV anyway, seeing as most of it is half-assed interviews with the lifeless, personality-bereft contestants he brought along! I don’t watch much reality TV, but my thought is that this does not really qualify as that. Oh, and because I don’t have any room to mention this later on, I might as well do it here: towards the last quarter of the film, the TV host guy says that anyone who leaves the island will be sued for five million dollars. By who? And what kind of a judge would actually take a case like that seriously? My biggest question is, though, what were the people writing this movie smoking, and how can we spread awareness in society to stay away from it?

The worst thing about this – and that’s saying a lot – is the dialogue. Where did the writers for this movie get the idea they could write dialogue? The hidden, sacral secret to writing dialogue is, surprise surprise, making it interesting and relevant to the plot. CrossBones does not have either of those. The characters talk about idiotic, menial garbage like their muscles, or who is the toughest on the island, or what they are going to do when they win the grand prize after the show is over. There is no character development, no thought put into what they are saying, no relevance of any of this to the plot, and you remember those interviews I mentioned in the last paragraph? Those go on for TEN MINUTES. Ten minutes of nothing but watching these retards blab on about how their muscles are big and they're going to win the contest at the end. God, just kill me! This is like torture! What kind of sick, sadistic shit is this? Listening to these people talk is seriously making me dumber; how long until they all get horribly maimed and killed? This is just so insipid! Nobody could have thought this was in any way interesting; they can't have. It's entirely non-sequitur to any conceivable idea of entertaining cinema. Oh, and they're still going; WILL YOU GET THIS SHIT OFF MY SCREEN ALREADY? I mean, this is a record for meaningless padding right here; forty five minutes in and we have absolutely NO sign of a plot!

Fortunately, there is still a serial killer in this movie to relieve the poor, distraught viewers of their misery. If you are like me, you probably forgot there was even a killer in this movie at all. The first kill happens almost an hour into the movie – really, are you even surprised? – in a badly shot and coordinated scene where the guy sort of…cuts his hand on some rocks, falls down and is subsequently eaten alive by a cannibalistic dead zombie pirate.

We have all heard that story before, right?

Let’s just get this torture over with. Most of the rest of the teens are killed off in various ways, without being developed or given interesting or distinguishing characteristics at all – well, except for Greedy G, but he does not really count. The host of the TV show gets his hand on a map that will lead him to the treasure, and ditches his contestants to go find it. The pirate kidnaps this one girl and this one guy and forces them to sail him after the TV show host to find it. He skins the TV show host alive, with the latter doing nothing but waving his arms around like a drowning paraplegic, despite the fact that the pirate is clearly smaller than him and not all that strong. Then he kidnaps the girl again and makes her carry all the treasure onto the boat. The pirate then kills her boyfriend, to which she is somehow motivated to bludgeon him with a rock until he dies. Apparently he was always that easy to kill, so…the whole movie was pointless?

I could have told you that at the beginning of the movie. Fortunately, none of you will ever have to see how right I am about this, because nobody cares about CrossBones. The acting is just laughable, the plot has already been done better by a hundred other movies and the writing is just awful in every way. This movie is a wretched pile of depraved cinematic fumbling so puerile that I am surprised that a company like Lion’s Gate actually distributed it. But hey, who am I to argue with the people who already put out such wonderful modern classics as Midnight Meat Train and SAW 3? What do I know? I do know that this movie is the nadir of human morality, and that’s no lie.