I haven’t been in a fist fight since I was 12 or 13. The guy actually went down but my right hand was aching and swollen for three or four days. When I was 19 or 20 a guy I was arguing with tagged me on the jaw, but I just absorbed it and ignored it like Jake LaMotta and kept saying what I was saying. I never even dreamt about getting into a fight after that. Until Twitter came along, I mean. Since my Twitter battles have become semi-regular I’ve been fantasizing about slugging this or that asshole. Slugging them in a John Wayne or Tom Hardy movie-fight way, of course — a couple of right crosses and a gut punch and maybe a kick to the mouth or the neck. Actual fights are fast and pathetic and over in about nine or ten seconds. Plus the likelihood of damaging your writing hand is high so it’s never gonna happen again. But boy, do I dream of it! This is totally a Twitter thing. Before Twitter began to happen big-time (what, seven years ago?) I rarely fantasized about beating the shit out of anyone for any reason. Okay, I used to dream about duking it out with the husband of a woman I was seeing in ’98 and ’99, but it never happened. (I was ready though — I bought a samurai sword.) Until Twitter, fistfights were for kids and drunks. I’ll bet I’m not alone on this. That’s Twitter for you, a rage thing.
In about 50 minutes I have a 5 pm screening of Jason Bateman‘s The Family Fang, and after that it’s a choice between seeing the Hollywood premiere of Gary Marshall‘s Mother’s Day with an after-party or catching a 70mm screening of Patton at the Fox lot Zanuck theatre. The 81 year-old Marshall peaked in the ’80s and ’90s (his last decent concoction was 1999’s Runaway Bride) and his last two, Valentine’s Day and New Year’s Eve, were completely dismissable. Plus Julia Roberts‘ hair style in this thing…’nuff said. I’ll be able to stream Mother’s Day before long, but how may more chances will I have to see Patton projected in mint-condition 70mm inside a first-rate theatre?
Date/time: 4.13, 11:30 am. From: Jeffrey Wells, Hollywood Elsewhere. To: Steve Weintraub, Collider. Message: You and the other geeks who posted about Captain America: Civil War a few days ago OVER-PRAISED, dude. Brilliant choreography and structuring, of course. And yes, the Russo brothers’ tone and efficiency is spot-on and hugely “entertaining” in spots. Yes, it’s waaay better than fucking BvS. Yes, it’s very smart and well-ordered. Yes, quite witty and funny at times. But Jesus, it wears you down, man.
The first hour or so is more or less fine (at times wowser) but I began to feel whipped and numb after the Berlin airport brawl, and certainly by the 100-minute mark.
Approaching the Dolby prior to last night’s Captain America: Civili War premiere.
The incessant juggling of bowling pins….the juggling…all those hyper-alert, ready-to-rock superheroes wrestling on the mat…all that juggling and re-juggling, matching this guy against the other guy…the Magnificent Russos! 12 or 14 or whatever pins. Will they drop one? Holy shit…not a single bowling pin dropped! Master jugglers!
Honestly? Eventually you start to not give a shit. Is there more to life than juggling Marvel combatants? No, there isn’t. That’s all there is.
And the slugging…the savage slugging…250 to 275 punches are thrown in this thing at least (whoof! whoompf!), and it just stops mattering after the 70th or 80th hammer-blow. Russo brothers to Wells: Can we throw in another 50 to 75 blows anyway?
The film peaks with the Berlin airport full-team brawl — admittedly a very cool, even masterful sequence — truly an action fan’s delight — but I needed a Red Bull after that. Pic ends fairly well — quietly, ready for the next installment — but the idea of another Marvel all-star duke out seems like real punishment this morning.