Tuesday, March 7, 2017

That kind of pressure's not helpful.

Although it pains me to admit it, I've probably ordered a half-dozen items from QVC in the thirty-seven years I've wandered this planet. Of the two orders I can actually recall, one was a four pack of kick ass NIKE posters that upon their arrival, I immediately thumb-tacked to my bedroom wall (the crown jewel of the set being that MJ from the free-throw line pic).

The other order I vividly remember, was an autographed David Justice rookie card. I didn't even like David Justice, or the Atlanta Braves, but for whatever reason I was so utterly compelled by what they were saying, I raced upstairs and begged my mom to pull the trigger. It was 'only' seventy dollars, and it was guaranteed to be authentic.

Because, you know, authenticity is everything.

I wasn't exactly stoked to see David O. Russell's 2015 directorial effort, Joy, when my wife and I fired it up a few weeks back. It wasn't that I've kind of soured on the whole Russell/Cooper/Lawrence thing like some of you, but more about the fact that I loathe fake stories about real people. 

[uh, that, and the fact that everything Russell makes lately seems to absolutely reek of Scorsese (which the trailer fully conveyed]

While I had heard some talk about the movie being overrated (which I could give a damn about, honestly, as it's a year after the fact), what really chapped  my ass was the whole idea of basing a mostly-fictional character off of an entirely real person. I know, I can hear myself, and you're right, I sound like an asshole. But see, what made this movie intermittently compelling, was the idea that this shit actually happened!

Turns out, however, that most of the time? Well...that shit didn't happen. At all. Or at least not in the way we're led to believe.

But letting that go, and the whole Yeah, Dave, I've seen Goodfellas a million times, too aspect, there is some joy to be had watching this flick. Assuming of course, you're a fan of Jennifer Lawrence, as her performance here is easily the best of her career. Fine, second best. She was the bomb in House at the End of the Street, yo [review].

For anybody who missed the two-minute version of the entire film that was shown in the trailer, Joy tells the familiar story of a working mom struggling to keep her life and family afloat. She seems like she might be one of those no-bullshit, f--k you, pay me type of ladies, which she is, unless she's dealing with her clown-show family.

This guy really surprised me. 
Then, she's surprisingly willing to put up with mountains of bullshit for some reason. Joy's dad is a dick, her mom is out of her f--king skull, her sister is the worst person on the planet, and her ex-husband lives in her shitty basement. It's all super-quirky but frustratingly familiar, as incessantly complaining a-holes spin in and out of frame while our main character does all she can to douse fire after fire. It's compelling sure, but being that it's mostly fiction...it might not go far enough.

Not compelling, but willing to go all the way, are the Yays and Boos. We actually started this one as the third leg of a, gasp!, triple header, but both the wife and I ended up in quirk-induced comas. We'd rebound later and basically re-watch the whole f--king thing.

Imagine if this really happened? I
magine is Cooper's character really existed?

  • Young Joy was quite the clevah girl.
  • It ended up being something I hated, but initially I was quite the fan of Rudy and Trudy. Goodness, 900 numbers were the best/worst.
  • The flashback to when Joy met Tony was pretty sweet. Of course he gets the girl, F--king band guys, and their f--king band hair.
  • Wow, who'd have thought that spilling red wine on that f--king boat would be such a life-changing event? (though I was hoping someone would change Trudy's life and throw that bitch overboard)
  • F--k it. I was a fan of Mr. Touissant.
  • The parking lot demo was pretty f--king rad, wasn't it? Easily the second best thing I've seen in a K-mart parking lot ever. And when you're older, I'll tell you about the first...
  • Dude. Joan Rivers was played by Melissa? *dramatically removes glasses* Huh-whut!!? 
  • So, that guy at the shooting range was pretty understanding, wasn't he?
  • And finally, the actual legacy of the real Joy Mangano is incredibly impressive. The mop is cool, but skinny hangars, too? And a hundred other patents, as well? Incredible. If I was wearing a hat, I would certainly tip it in her direction. Maybe HSN is selling one right now...*changes channel* Nope. They're selling a tape gun for crafting with two hundred and eighty feet of tape (the Hell? ).
I feel like one of these girls is about to draw a monster she saw in her dream.
  • Uh, what the Hell is with this opening? (or any time we do this old soap thing?)
  • I love De Niro, but just about everything he did here made me want to punch him not only in the Rocky, but also in the Bullwinkles, too. And the fact that he's being 'returned'? Made me want to kill myself.
  • Oh, and Joy's mom? Somehow...despite what I just said about her pops, is infinitely f--king worse. If this shit is all made up anyway, could we have had Joy been a motherless stripper? Prone to washing her car shirtlessly? (f--k you, spellcheck...that's a word)
  • If you have to pull back your daughter's veil to tell her maybe this wedding isn't such a good idea, I feel like your to-do list needs some f--king rearranging.
  • Wow, QVC guys, wow. A lady comes in an demos something she invented and you laugh the entire f--king time? You realize you work at QVC, right? You probably shouldn't laugh at a women ever.
  • And speaking of QVC, does it really look like a space-lab from the year 3000? I always imagined it would look like a cross between a 1950's call-center and a place where they film extra classy pornos, not the set of Michael Jackson's Scream video.
  • That f--king mop sales guy was insanely horrible. This was their top seller? Really? I'm not buying it. Being a pathetic dickbag never helped me sell shit.
  • Okay, Cooper's character was fake, got it, but why did that imaginary bastard give Joy so many f--king chances? Seems like there was a nude scene missing, perhaps? (not to be a dick, but why was this guy so enamored with Joy?)
  • There's a secret passage from the bathroom to the production floor? Uh...no. Not buying it. Next you're gonna tell me that someone hacked into some phones and weird nude, dead-eyed JLaw pictures exist and they're terrible.
  • I used to think the worst thieves in the world were like, regular thieves. Nope. Patent thieves are the biggest turds in the bowl.
  • Wouldn't be a dramatic movie about a woman going through a nervous breakdown if we didn't have a scene where she gives herself a f--king rad haircut.
  • And finally, THE NARRATION. Who the f--k thought this was a good idea? Grandma is going to tell the story? Fine. I'm okay with that. But spoiler alert, grandma f--king dies halfway through the film....yet still continues to narrate. What. The. F--k. Not only is this incredibly/possibly disrespectful, but it's really f--king stupid, too.
Holy shit. As I've been finishing this review, I inadvertently left the Home Shopping Network on. I've only looked up a few times, but it's absolutely f--king atrocious. They've been dropping products on the floor, telling lame jokes, and peddling every useless product with some lame personal story that no one gives a f--k about.

Clumsy mistakes? Humorless banter? Selling shit nobody wants with pointless anecdotes? 

Looks like I'm gonna have to race upstairs again, like I did when I was a kid. But that trigger I'm gonna pull?

It won't be a credit card.


  1. I watched this on HBO a while back and it wasn't very memorable. Lawrence was good, though they didn't even attempt to age her in any way which got distracting.

    I've never ordered anything off of QVC. I just go to the "as seen on TV" section at Target lol

    1. Yeah, this was more of a peace offering to my wife, as she was curious about it...and had just sat through John Wick 2. So, it wasn't all that hard to oblige.

      Good call on the aging thing, or lack thereof, as they really didn't even bother. In a way, that's good...only because it's typically laughable when they actually do give it a go. That said, I hear ya...

      Yeah, apparently I've always been a sucker for quality, value and convenience.

  2. I actually chose to see this in theaters, and what a disappointment it was. And, why was she nominated? It just seemed like a waste of everyones time and effort. They were all great in Silver Linings, okay in American Hustle and just wasted in Joy.

    1. I've seen waaaaay worse in the theaters, but I would have been crushed too.

      That's the perfect order of these films, but I really despised American Hustle. Okay, that maybe overselling it, but I at least despised JLaw's character/performance. Here? I uhhhh...kind of liked her.

  3. Wow...this one sounds like a dud. If I ever get the urge to watch this, I'll just rewatch Silver Linings instead.

    1. That is an excellent call. I remember loving Silver Linings Playbook. So much in fact, that I'm probably partly responsible for this one even if existing. (we all are)

  4. Ugh this flick was so irritating. It was like 10 movies in one and u are right the narration thing was so dumb. Lawrence was fine but the only performance of hers I liked was in Winter's Bone

    1. I always forget about Winter's Bone (my default go-to is Silver Linings Playbook), but that's a good call.

      As for this movie, I only gave in because my lady wanted to watch it. It wasn't totally horrible, but good God it could have been way better. And step one? Lose that f--king narration. Or, have Joy do it. At least that would have made sense.

    2. And even in WB Hawkes blew her off the screen totally. The only thing that was good and came from this movie was that it catapulted O. Russell out of Oscar season, finally

    3. That's not fair. Hawkes blows everybody off the screen (that sounds bad, but you know what I mean).

      O. Russell. I can't hear that dude's name and not think of that clip where he freaks the Hell out on Lily Tomlin. Insanity!