Editorial: Death of the Hollywood Superstar

The following is an editorial by Zack Lawrence.

It was sometime ago that Hollywoodland was filled to the brim and boiling over with egocentric, megalomaniacal movie stars all fired up and ready to set your living room ablaze. They were an army of few, A-Listers with twenty million dollar picture deals and blockbuster movies giving them acting credibility even if they didn’t deserve it. Stallone, Shwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, dominated the eighties. We have the great legends of the past Charlton Heston, Kirk Douglas, Brando, Bogart and Jimmy Stuart respected to this day, but who lives up to that legacy? The Michael Jackson’s of today hit the charts with 120k worth of records sold and then burn away like hot ash. We’ve got Justin Timberlake, who seems to be taking the King of Pop’s crown away but how long before the lameness moves in? The celebutants dominating the media’s attention are now all the hype, while all the young’uns in the acting field are going hungry. Ben Affleck was at one point supposed to usher in the new era of what it meant to be a movie star, until he became one Gigli joke. Josh Hartnett had to take the reins in Pearl Harbor but what happened to his star? Yes, these fine actors are making a living and their movies are making some cash, but where are the SUPER stars? Christopher Reeve will go down into history, while anyone besides me and a few others will say Brandon Rooth? Rowth? Routh? Where is that kid? And Han Solo and Indiana Jones? Awesome, but where is Hayden Christianson?

It’s everything and everywhere. Even the ladies. Julia Roberts is now not the major draw, but Reese Witherspoon. I see potential everywhere from Natalie Portman and Anne Hathaway to Scarlet Johansson and Charlize Theron, but still, superstars are now few and far between. Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal seem to make good choices, and the media is comparing Shia Labeouf to a young Tom Hanks, so there is some sparkle of hope. Brad Pitt and Clooney, Hanks and Will Ferrel are all capable of transitioning between drama and humor, but (besides maybe Hanks) will they be legends? This editorial is an open forum for anyone’s opinion. I am making a broad generalization just to make a point, but what I’d really like is feedback on the idea as a whole. Can Hollywood breed new stars, or will they forge themselves with the reputations come first then follow after. I believe it is a possibility that the studios hype these newbie’s up like a boxing promoter and then most of the time, move on to the newer blood faster then they probably should. Do you remember when a Deniro flick was a once a year event, with Oscar buzz and huge reviews? Then there was Analyze This and That, The Fockers and Bullwinkle. Now it’s Leo D who does one quality film a year, which turns into an event, like Aviator, Gangs of New York and Departed. Matt Damon also is doing well, but again the question arises will these careers become set in stone with “Damn, dirty apes!” or “Say hello to my little friend!”? I have some hope for Christian Bale, and even think Russell Crowe may be able to win back audiences, as long as quality remains in their decision making. Robin Williams is the Man of the Year and riding in an RV while getting his License to Wed, so he can’t possibly do any more Good Will Hunting.

We need more of these quality performers who know what it means to be a star and not a Paris Hilton, who doesn’t know how to act but can act like she’s a star, which is what fools the media into thinking that is what they are, “Act as if.” More substance to the craft and the lifestyle and less papier-mâché’ faux celebs who blow away in the wind like pillars of salt after their expiration date hits its mark. I want movie star to mean what it meant even as little as twenty years ago, and I want it now. Swinging in on a cool night breeze I hear the tinkling sounds of a hundred bells…Chime away.


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The Hot Rod Ultimatum

The following editorial is written by Zack Lawrence.

Hot Rod

Ok, we all knew Hot Rod was going to crash at the box office worse then a spectacular wreck on Rod’s moped. But I am here to vehemently defend its greatness as one of the funniest movies of the year. Not Oscar worthy, I assure you, but in its own way, funnier than the norm. Because that’s exactly why, its sketch comedy as a flick! Deliciously absurd and unconventional so much so that it has no intentions of making sense.

Someone asked me, “Will I like it?” and I said “No.” and that reason alone is because if your expecting a regular Waterboy-esque slam bang funny stunt movie, don’t go. If you like Kung Pow, Monty Python, The State, or Andy Samberg’s digital shorts, this is your movie. If not? Run far, far away. Repeating the same words, constant falling, or dumbness for the sake of being dumb, all these things that most people see as an easy laugh are right. But they have finely crafted all these things into a brainless, ridiculous, and straight up fucking stupid, piece of art. It now will fit perfectly into that genre of movies that are all basically sketch comedies, stretched into something more, which takes talent. Most SNL movies are god awful spin offs with a few laughs, to say the least, flicks like A Night At the Roxbury, Superstar, Stuart, It’s Pat, sucked it, hard. I pay homage though to the greats, Wayne’s World was immaculate.

Hot Rod is a clean franchise that was an original piece with almost all players being tagged to SNL somehow, which I believe they should follow suit with and do more often, originality! Do you want big? See Rush Hour 3 for generic. Do you want masterfully dim witted, done to a polished piece of funny shit? See Hot Rod. But hurry, it’ll be out of the theatres by next week. Cool Beans.

Politically Incorrect: Top 10 Movie Retards

The following editorial is written by Zack Lawrence.

RainmanHere’s a touchy one. I’ve wanted to do this article for a long time, just for entertainment purposes and all in jest; I don’t want a bombardment of hate mail. I have mental retardation and autism in my family so I have common ground and hell; I have experience to fall back on. So here we go with the list, don’t hate me because I’m insensitive, it’s not insensitivity it’s entertainment, and by god, I’m here to entertain. Plus, I’m just writing about it, these people actually acted like retarded people.
10. Rain Man – An Oscar winner I do believe? I know he’s one of the best, but I have an autistic family member who I brought to Foxwoods and all he did was cover his ears and rock at the sounds of the bells and whistles. I was fucked at the card counting!! That’s why he’s number ten, it’s his fault.

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Top Ten Greatest Movie Endings


I, in the past couple of years, have written more Top Ten articles then I can count for the prestigious Slashfilm. Soooooo, these flicks coming at you are the contenders for best ever. They are in my eyes terrific and great endings, a dreamy “cap it all off” nightcap of honey, warm milk and Nyquil type ending that leave you stuffed and satisfied. If something can move you to tears, I believe it has a specific merit to it dubbing it an all time great,. Here I dig, into my past and see what I can come up with. Got any of your own? Email them in!!

10. Breach – Ryan Philippe opens the elevator doors and “BAM”, Chris Cooper is standing there between two guards. The electricity that passes between them is unsettling, with a moment feeling like forever, until Cooper hauntingly utters the words. “Pray for me.” You can’t help but wonder why Chris doesn’t just Goldberg spear Philippe into the wall behind him for being the sole guy to take him down and ruin his life.

9. Lost Boys – After the final showdown with Kiefer Sutherland and the rest of his Motley Crue of teen vamps comes Grandpa, opening the fridge and closing his eyes before sighing and finally saying, “The one thing about Santa Carla I never could stomach….All the damn vampires.” And the light from said refrigerator, throwing its snuffed shadow upon Corey Haim and Jason Patric’s face, leave us feeling like we have just had the final joke slapped onto our faces ….People are strange.

8. Good Will Hunting -  “Son of a bitch, he stole my line…” Robin Williams exclaims after reading Will’s goodbye note. Most romantic sentiment without the payout of seeing Skylar and Will meet again leave the audience wondering what could be… Or if Will’s shit box can make the drive cross country.

7. Batman Begins -  ” I never said thank you.” Say’s Gary Oldman………. “And you’ll never have to.” Christian Bale beats everyone including Mr. Mom to become the coolest, buffest and most convincing Bruce Wayan/ Batman ever, then dives off the roof into the Dark night.

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The following is an editorial by /Film correspondent Zach Lawrence.

Ben Affleck

Like many of you Slashfilm enthusiasts out there, I have just read the article on Gone Baby Gone by Peter Sciretta, and watched the cool trailer. While he makes all the right points in all the right places, he lacks a few aspects to what I like to call the “mythology of Ben Affleck”. You see, some time ago at the end of the “Bennifer” era, and with the barrage of shoddy films Affleck had been releasing he went into hiding. Some people are fan boys for Star Wars or Transformers, but being from Boston I had happened to be an Affleck Fan boy, and this vanishing of my hero hit me hard.

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Top Ten Villains Who Never Get Recognition

Goonies Newspaper

Is it that time of year again? The time when we get “The Top Ten Villains of All Time!”? Not quite. It seems to me that every year in some magazine or on some show, we get the typical list of baddies from the 60’s, 70’s and so on. Usually they mention the cool regulars like Vader, the Emperor, or one of the guys who tries to off James Bond. And that’s cool, I love those lists and I read them. The nuances varying only slightly, as the leaves change colors and the snow begins to fall, then we realize another year has been stolen from our lives. So what if some of the lame, not so cool, or dare I say, shitty bad guys got their moment, however brief or insignificant? It might look like this.

10. The Fratellis – Jake, Francis and Mama Fratelli hot on the size 5’s of the Goonies. They weren’t just killers, they tried to torture Chunk! Putting the hand of a child in a blender to get him to talk is classic, while at the same time keeping their retarded freak of a brother chained up in the basement and trying to kill each other over pepperoni pizza. Badass.

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