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Blend movie plots for a wild ‘n’ goofy mix

Imagine ‘My Ghost Dog Skip,’ ‘Down to U-571'

SHARE Blend movie plots for a wild ‘n’ goofy mix

To paraphrase Forrest Gump, goofy is as goofy does. And as big a goof as I am, I have to find appropriately goofy ways to amuse myself while waiting for movie screenings to start.

(When I first started doing this job, I actually tried doing something productive, such as reading novels. But I was constantly being interrupted by others who were waiting in line — often by my fellow critics — so I had to find another form of amusement.)

My current favorite pastime is coming up with movie ideas that are better — or even worse — than those being produced by Hollywood. This "intellectual" exercise usually entails combining films in a rather Frankensteinian manner.

For example, I recently pondered what "Here on Battlefield Earth," a blending of the recent "Love Story" wannabe "Here on Earth" and the preposterously bad sci-fi epic "Battlefield Earth," would be like.

Considering how wretchedly Harlequin Romance-esque the former was and how much scenery-chewing John Travolta did in the latter, the resulting mess would probably taste something like, well, a ham-and-cheese sandwich.

You're probably sorry I even brought this up. But that's just the start of things. Try these quirky movie blendings (or to be more accurate, concatenations) on for size:

"MY GHOST DOG SKIP" (a combination of "Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai" and "My Dog Skip"). Poor picked-on Frankie Muniz wouldn't need a loyal pet to deal with those bullies if he had ultra-cool assassin Forrest Whitaker as his best pal.

"BOYS AND GIRLS, INTERRUPTED" ("Boys and Girls" and "Girl, Interrupted"). Upon further reflection, maybe wood and collagen (the "acting" of Freddie Prinze Jr. and Angelina Jolie's Oscar-winning lips, respectively) wouldn't be such a good combination after all.

"ROAD TRIP TO EL DORADO." Actually, pairing "Road Trip's" ultra-annoying comedian Tom Green and even-more-aggravating Rosie Perez (the voice of Chel in "The Road to El Dorado") might not be such a good idea, either.

"RETURN TO ME, MYSELF & IRENE" ("Return to Me" and "Me, Myself & Irene"). Minnie Driver's sweet-natured, heart-transplant recipient character would have made a better match for Jim Carrey's pushover Charlie Baileygates. That rascally Hank, on the other hand, probably deserves squeaky-voiced Renee Zellweger.

"MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE TO MARS" (either of the "Mission: Impossible" films and "Mission to Mars"). Superstar Tom Cruise would add much-needed action to Brian De Palma's "Mars" picture, and perhaps the advanced Martian race in that film could decipher the plot for "Mission: Impossible." If we were lucky.

"DOWN TO U-571" ("Down to You" and "U-571"). When they run out of torpedoes, Matthew McConaughey and his fearless crew could fire wood (Freddie Prinze Jr.) at the enemy. Oh wait, I already made that joke.

"WHERE THE MONEY IS WHERE THE HEART IS" ("Where the Money Is" and "Where the Heart Is"). You could discard everything else from these two films, except Paul Newman from the former and Stockard Channing from the latter, and I'd pay to see it.

"BIG MOMMA'S HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL" ("Big Momma's House" and "The House on Haunted Hill"). We could finally find out which is scarier — Martin Lawrence in drag or Geoffrey Rush maniacally overacting. My bet's on the former.

"THE CIDER HOUSE RULES OF ENGAGEMENT" ("The Cider House Rules" and "Rules of Engagement"). Let's just see if trigger-happy Marine Samuel L. Jackson can open fire on Dr. Larch's adorable orphans. Here's betting he can't — even if they were armed.

"PLAY IT TO THE BONE COLLECTOR" ("Play it to the Bone" and "The Bone Collector"). Maybe the psychotic serial killer's next targets could be Antonio Banderas and Woody Harrelson's irritating boxers.

And we haven't even gotten around to "Wonder Boys Don't Cry" ("Wonder Boys" and "Boys Don't Cry"), "Any Given Snow Day" ("Any Given Sunday" and "Snow Day") or "Pitch Black and White" ("Pitch Black" and "Black and White").

Oh well, there's always next time. . . .

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: "It wasn't dangerous at all, it was never dangerous. It was a drag getting wet all the time but that wasn't dangerous. It was dangerous working with Mark though because he could throw up on you from 15 feet away and still hit you." — George Clooney, talking about the queasiness of Mark Wahlberg, his co-star in the film "The Perfect Storm."


E-MAIL: jeff@desnews.com