Sunday, February 3, 2008

The Ten. Ironically, it is not perfect. (******6/10)

I was struggling on Saturday night. Struggling to watch the Sens-Leafs in HD, while my girlfriend had her friend over. While Jen is usually pretty good about hockey, especially Senators games. But Ashley was extremely insistent upon watching whatever was on MTV. MTV! I decided that the best thing to do was to compromise in some way, and that was to find a movie that was not the hockey game, but that HAD to be better than whatever was on MTV. The girls seem to like documentaries - the last time Ashley was over I made sure she never shopped at Wal-Mart again by showing her Wal-Mart: The High Cost Of Low Price. This time, I thought I would put on the new documentary "Everything's Cool", an insightful look at Global Warming. But there were previews. And the girls decided, on the fourth preview, that the movie being previewed looked far better than the documentary I had suggested. The movie was called The Ten, a humourous look at the ten commandments. So, grudgingly, I switched the DVDs. And put on The Ten. As that movie started, the girls saw another preview that caught their attention, and asked if I had THAT movie, maybe we should watch that one. (THAT movie? It was "Everything's Cool"!)

I put my foot down. I am not putting the DVD I just took off back on because you saw a preview for the one movie on the other disc, because then I would be switching discs all night and perhaps end up creating some kind of sci-fi situation where I am stuck there, in my living room, going from one DVD menu to another for the rest of eternity. So I skipped the rest of the previews and just pressed play. And we watched The Ten. Which is OK. But not fantastic. Just a little bonkers and kinda funny. Some of the hottest women alive are in this movie - Jessica Alba, who I really don't think is that hot (kind of cabbagepatch kiddy, as far as I'm concerned) but who seems to be the #1 Hottest Chick Alive according to the rest of the world. And also my personal favourite, Famke Janssen, who I really think is the hottest woman on Earth. In a cougar-ific kinda way. (Check out Deep Rising. Horrible film, hottest wet-T-shirt Famke Janssen scene ever.)

The movie is basically ten short vignettes about each of the ten commandments. Paul Rudd (who was fantastic in Knocked Up) oversees the vignettes, introduces them and runs his own little bizarre drama as we move from one to another. Famke Janssen is his wife, and he is cheating on her with Jessica Alba. Some really cool actors show up in the film as well - Liev Schreiber, Adam Brody, Rob Corddry, Janeane Garofolo, and Winona Ryder in some inspired casting. (She appears in the Thou-Shalt-Not-Steal vignette. Get it?) Each vignette gets more and more bonkers, as they connect to each other in a bizarre sort of way. There are three really excellent ones. The Thou-Shalt-Not-Steal one is great, as Winona Ryder falls in love with a ventriloquist's dummy, and steals's insane. So too is the Schreiber bit where two neighbours keep trying to one-up each other by buying more and more catscan machines. Totally demented. But very little is as demented as the animated "Lying Rhino" sequence, narrated by a bunch of junkies, done in full, almost-X-rated, Felick The Cat style animation.

There are a couple of duds as well, but overall each segment is pretty watchable if not excellent. This film is not for the squeamish, as my girlfriend squirmed uncomfortably for the entire duration of the "Covet thy Neighbour's Wife" segment, where Rob Corddry and Ken Marino converse very seriously and intensely about rape in prison, and how if you are one man's prison wife, there is an assumption that you will not let yourself be raped by's definitely an over-the-top scene, but it made me laugh. Most of this film did, and it is definitely worth renting. (In the end, if you have to make a choice, as I did, between this one and Everything's Cool, choose the latter. But if you can watch both, do it.)

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