Monday, June 16, 2014

If one's got your name on it, there's nothing you can do.

Remember that one movie, the one with the guy from that other thing, and he does all that stuff? What was the name of it? Nothing? Perhaps I should be more specific, to see if you can help me come up with the title.

This movie, it's about a not-too-bright southern boy, who talks kinda funny. This kid, right, he grows up to be an American war hero. He came from some rural town, lived with a sassy mama who took up for him no matter what. Is any of this ringing a bell? Everyone thought that the Army would chew him up and spit him out, but then he did that cool thing with the gun. Remember? Oh, and it starred that great actor, you know, he won the Oscar and everything! Shit. What was it called?

Yep, you got it, clearly I was talking about Sergeant York. I mean, what else could there be?

Released in 1941 and starring Gary Cooper, Sergeant York tells the real-life story of Alvin C.York, an average Tennessee hillbilly, who ends up becoming a decorated hero during World War I. The film is divided into two distinct sections, separated only by an act of God.

In the first section, we meet York pre-lightning strike, and this guy is basically a stupid drunk. One day, he stumbles into a cute, young lady (waaaay young), and decides that he's going to marry her. Only problem? He's a broke a-hole, and has nothing to really offer her. Finally deciding not to be an aimless turd, he puts everything he has on the line and attempts to man up and buy some land. But after the longest two months of his life (and the longest turkey shoot ever put to film) and working himself to death, York is screwed over and ends up losing everything. He flips out, and decides to kill the greedy sumbitches who done f--ked him over, y'hear? Like, for reals.
But on the way, it appears, that a higher power has other plans for York, and diverts him to church. Welcome to part 2: York becomes Ned Flanders. And the Terminator. In the second half of the film, York finds himself sent to the front lines of WWI, despite being against hurting others. But after some careful soul-searching on his thinking hill, York realizes that protecting AMERICA might just be God's work after all. So, York goes abroad. And f--king kills everybody.

I watched this 134-minute epic as part of Fisti's ongoing Twice a Best Actor series and was blown away by much of it. For a film released seventy-five years ago (!), I was impressed by the scope of the production, not to mention Cooper's impressive performance. Don't get me wrong, at times, it's completely cringe-worthy (it is the forties) and occasionally veers into full-blown (unintentional) comedy, but regardless, I'm still glad I've seen it. As a time capsule of a much more innocent and staunchly patriotic America, the film still works. But sweet f--k is it long.

Speaking of things that have clearly run their course, here are the Yays and Boos for Sergeant Dick. Oh, hold on. Dick York. Dick Sargent. Sergeant York. Wow, that's weird.

Yaaaaaaaaay!
  • Man, that bar on the border was pretty cool. I'll buy all the ladies in Kentucky a drink. From Tennessee.
  • Speaking of, that was one Hell of a barfight. I didn't know bitches got their heads slammed into the floor repeatedly in 1941.
  • Pussle-gutted. This is how I will describe all mules from now on. You know, when I buy a f--king mule.
  • Get up, Noah! Ah, unintentional boner talk.
  • I hated all of Hawkeye's little flair shit with his bow in The Avengers. But here? Oh man, York's got a sweet signature move with his rifle that I f--king love. Cuts down on the haze.
  • The blokes they meet on the front? Those guys were awesome.
  • The war action is pretty sweet, even if all deaths end with a delicate pirouette.
  • Pusher! I liked this guy, even if he was a Yankee dick.
  • And finally, Alvin C. York, badass motherf--ker. When York gets into battle, he pretty much lays the groundwork for every eighties action hero. Seriously. Not only is he killing bitches left and right, he's even got a little finishing move that is equal parts awesome and hilarious. He's about fifty years shy of looking at the camera and uttering Gobble-gobble, motherf--ker.
Booooooooooo!
  • Damn squeaky shoes. Always fixin' to interrupt church bidness.
  • Is this a comedy? The score thinks so.
  • Gracie Williams, you slut. I'm pretty sure 'hoping' is code for I'll f--k you senseless. Pretty sure.
  • Zeb Andrews, pioneer. You sir, just may be one of the earliest cinematic examples of bitter, cock-blocking a-hole. For this we salute you. With a Boo.
  • Oh, while were talking about worthless dickbags, give it up for Mr. Tomkins. This guy deserves to be buried in the bottom with a broken clock shoved up his...well, bottom.
  • The Army and their nefarious enlistment tactics. So, York. You don't think you can kill someone? Why don't you take ten days, on a hilltop, and think it the f--k over, okay? 
  • The patriotic WAR! music was a little too cheerful.
  • Bert. Oh, he's fine. He's just leaning over...on the ground. With a hole in his head.
  • Fake surrender? You dirty Krauts. 
  • Hey! York's home after single-handedly killing everyone and winning the entire war! Yay! Hey, Ms. Gracie, I got an idea. Kiss this f--king guy, damn it. It's the least you could do.
  • And finally, inbreeding's effect on speech. Not only is the dialogue entirely too heavy on the Aw, shucks nonsense, but I'm pretty sure I might have to relinquish my English certification after listening to these hillbillies butcher the language for more than two hours. I'm not shitting you, it's f--king terrible. 
I hate when I'm watching a movie and am reminded of a movie that I'd rather be watching. If that makes sense. Luckily though, as part of Fisti's series, we're going to actually get to watch Forrest Gump, as Tom Hanks won one of his Oscars for that performance. The other movie? I can't think of the name of it. It's about this guy, right? He looks all sickly and pale, and has to spend time in a courtroom or something. It's not even slightly funny. Oh, right. I got it.

Jury Duty.

4 comments:

  1. Bah! You should be grateful to my series for yanking these awesome reviews out of you! I can't wait to see what you have to say about Philadelphia!

    We feel pretty much the same about this one. As a film, it works well enough. It has so many faults, especially in the way it's all laid out, but it pulls you in and keeps you watching.

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    1. I'm actually excited for Philadelphia (well, that might not be the right word), and the Gump re-watch.

      This one...I don't know. It tells a nice story, and is truly f--king epic, but it's hard to get passed how old-timey aw-shucks it gets at times. And honestly...the Tennessean (?) dialect thing? F--k me.

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  2. Finally a movie I've seen, haha, and a damn good one if I may add. Awesome review, it really makes me want to re-watch the movie again :)

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    1. Of all the people I've talked to about this one, no one had actually seen it. When I described it, they were like, I'm going to watch that when I get home. Then I told them how long it was, and when ir was made...and they were like, Oh, really? I'm good.

      Glad you liked the review, though. Any time you've got a review of the same movie, just post the link here. I'll check it out ASAP.

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