January 16, 2009, - 3:17 pm

Weekend Box Office: Terrific “Defiance,” “Paul Blart, Mall Cop” vs. Disgusting Worship of “Biggie” Rap Thug

By Debbie Schlussel
January is usually the pet cemetery for unwanted dogs in the movie biz. All of the ones that aren’t wanted are dumped and buried there. But not this weekend. While I did not screen “Hotel For Dogs” (sorry), I saw the rest and liked three out of four–rare for me:
* “Defiance“: This is not only a well-done movie, it is an important movie. It chronicles the real-life story of the Polish Jewish Bielski brothers, who fought back against the Nazis. They were brave Jewish partisans who saved hundreds of Jewish lives and killed a lot of Nazis, too. The Jews didn’t willingly march to their deaths in the camps. When they could–as with the Bielskis–they fought back. And there were several other Jewish partisan groups that did so throughout Nazi Europe, not just the Bielskis.

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The Bielski’s heroic fight is captured well here by Daniel Craig and Liev Schreiber. Although I’m no fan of Craig as James Bond, he was in his element here (and while it’s not important to the movie, I am a woman–and he looked very hot here, all the more so because he was a Jew with guns fighting Nazis, plus I like the rugged look). While Craig is good, it must be remembered that Craig–who makes his living off of movies where he has guns–is for gun control. Gun control is what made it harder for the Bielskis and other Jewish partisans to survive and fight–they needed to steal guns in the wake of laws that prevented Jews from owning them. This is why I used to speak at the NRA convention about the Bielskis (I’ve since been barred from the group at NRA Islamofascist board member Grover Norquist’s insistence.)
The real star of the movie is Schreiber, who has the best line in the movie. Tuvia Bielski (Craig) is their leader, and he requires Zus Bielski (Schreiber) to only take some of the (Nazi-sympathizing) local villagers’ food at gunpoint and allow them on their way. Zus wanted to take all of the food and kill them. Because they followed Tuvia’s more liberal policy, the surviving villagers tell the Nazis and it results in lost lives. Says Zus: “Your policy of diplomacy is sh-t.” Exactly what President-Elect Obama needs to be told.
Another great line is when a religious Jew with his Torah books tells Tuvia Bielski that his courage amidst the Nazi mass-murder makes him renew his faith in G-d. Brought tears to my eyes, and reminded me of my father and grandfather.
The movie is excellent, and I highly recommend it. But don’t forget, in the back of your mind, that while the movie shows courage against evil, its writer/director, Edward Zwick, won’t show that same courage when it comes to Islamic terrorism and defending Israel.
FOUR REAGANS
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* “Paul Blart: Mall Cop“: This movie was waaaay better than I expected. Hilarious, fun, perfect escapist movie for you and your whole family. Loved it.
Paul Blart–a loser, overweight, longtime mall security guard (Kevin James)–is lonely and ridiculed. His illegal alien Latina wife, who married him for a green card, left him, and he lives with his mother (and daughter). And everyone at the mall treats him like dirt. One day, he meets a cute girl working at a hairpiece kiosk, and instantly, he’s in love. But while she’s nice, she’s not interested. Soon, though, Paul Blart, Mall Cop, has the opportunity to prove himself and be her hero when he gets stuck in the mall, as criminals take over the mall and try to rob credit card codes.
While some of the jokes are dumb, most of it is laugh out loud funny. I laughed the whole time. Well worth the ten bucks for what it is–pure, light comedy.
One note: You can tell the movie was made a while ago because one of the stores in the mall is “The Sharper Image,” which is now out of business.
TWO-AND-A-HALF REAGANS
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* “Notorious“: If I were a Black American, I’d be p-ssed that Hollywood is constantly glorifying the worst examples for my kids. On the other hand, I walked out of this movie thinking, hmmm . . . if Hollywood can make a scumbag White guy (Larry Flynt) and a scumb Latino guy (Ernesto “Che” Guevara) into heroes, then this is the new “civil rights,” the new “equality.” A Black drug-dealing, womanizing sleazebag who chants cusswords for a living and fathers kids all over the place, out of wedlock, can be lionized by Hollywood, too.
Let’s get this straight: Christopher Wallace a/k/a “Biggie Smalls” a/k/a “The Notorious B.I.G.” was a piece of crap, whose death (a result of rival rap gangs feuding) is no loss to America. If only all of these East Coast-West Coast trash-talking rappers would eliminate each other, our country–our society–would be a whole lot better off, so long as there aren’t these fictional, white-washing accounts of what great people they were.
Wallace was a no-talent hack whose every other word–as the dialogue in this movie–was the f- or p-word, whether he was rapping or “conversatin’.” He was a violent guy–not shown in this movie–who beat up and robbed the promoter of his concerts. He was a gun-toting thug, who sold crack–beginning at age 13–to pregnant women when other drug dealers wouldn’t. Thankfully, that’s shown in the movie. “I’m a businessman,” he says. Indeed.
Wallace also recruited other thugs and trashy human vessels to bring their filth upon America, like his extramarital girlfriend, Lil’ Kim–who got preganant by him and aborted the kid (not depicted in the movie). And “Biggie” beat and robbed even those who promoted his concert. The guy was a human sewer.
Sadly, Wallace’s 12-year-old son plays his worthless father (from age 8-13) in this ode to crap and probably believes the hype. It should also be noted that Sean “Diddy” Combs is the one who made this guy into a rap star. Yup, the same “Diddy” who is a big-time Obama star. Just another example of Obama’s “peeps” (that’s street for “people”).
This movie, like Wallace, was filthy and disgusting. Even more disgusting was what a hero this movie made this lowlife out to be. Couldn’t believe people were crying for this bloated bozo at the end of the movie. I fought my urge to cheer when the shots hit his flesh onscreen. Just die already, I thought. Buh-bye.
Skip at all cost.
FOUR MARXES PLUS
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* “Last Chance Harvey“: Harvey (Dustin Hoffman) is a music composer for TV ads, but he’s older and about to be “downsized” by his mean boss. And he’s gone to London to attend his daughter’s wedding. But Harvey feels as if he’s an outcast. His daughter shuns him for her stepfather (Mr. Barbra Streisand a/k/a James Brolin), and he feels all alone and distraught. But, soon, he meets Emma Thompson, an airport employee at Heathrow, and everything is suddenly looking up again. This is sort of like a “Before Sunrise” for middle-aged adults. Entertaining, but nothing new or different from a million other movies. Enjoyable enough, but kind of hackneyed, even if Dustin Hoffman is very good here. And some of the scenes between him and his daughter were painful and extremely sad.
ONE-AND-A-HALF REAGANS
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11 Responses

After reading your review for ‘Notorious’, I think you should give it one Reagan instead of four plus Marxes since the movie has nothing to do with Marxism but a lot to do with putting a positive spin on the ugly side of America and capitalism.

Norman Blitzer on January 16, 2009 at 4:12 pm

Norman, the dark side of capitalism is the drug cartel business. In Mexico, they eliminate any competition that stands in their way… literally. American gangsters are not that ruthless or they’d be running the world’s underworld.

NormanF on January 16, 2009 at 4:18 pm

As always GREAT review! One of my most fave features of your site!

labwrs on January 16, 2009 at 4:23 pm

loved Defiance, and you are right, even covered in muck Craig is HOT:) even more so because he is playing a real hero.

mindy1 on January 16, 2009 at 5:22 pm

Deb:
“This is why I used to speak at the NRA convention about the Bielskis (I’ve since been barred from the group at NRA Islamofascist board member Grover Norquist’s insistence.)”
When was this? Can you mention the backstory please?

Ken_K on January 16, 2009 at 9:55 pm

You are probably right about Notorious B.I.G. being trash. I am not going to defend that lifestyle. I didn’t know he was that brutal. However I got to disagree with you him being a no talent hack. He had some great hits. Nothing I would ever tell a child to listen to, but as an adult listening to “Big Poppa” or “Hypnotize” in clubs during in 90s every DJ made their money on his hits. Probably had more to do with Puffy’s beats set to the raps. Similar to everything in pop culture if you emulate Hollywood it will destroy you. For me, it is what it is, Music. Won’t see the movie, not that big a fan.

californiascreaming on January 16, 2009 at 10:05 pm

Debbie, I’ve been surprised by a couple of of your movie reviews. It’s almost as if you are compelled to say how great a random movie is once in a while, all evidence to the contrary. Is there any free movie candy or soda you’d care to disclose?

Anonymous1 on January 17, 2009 at 1:10 pm

So Grover Norquist, a member of the Muslim fifth column in the USA, is a NRA board member?!?!? Why can’t conservatives and patriots throw over this bum?

arius on January 17, 2009 at 1:34 pm

Hip hop fans will probably flock to the Wallace movie because that culture WORSHIPS the “scumbag”. Check out some of the stupid talent shows lately that hip hop is represented in. Five year old kids are indoctrinated in mind, body and soul to the criminal sub culture that has become hip hop rap. The Canton Wal Mart photo studio has a big poster of a 5 year old (at the most) black kid dressed up like a pimp. Disgraceful.
Can’t wait to see Defiance.

samurai on January 18, 2009 at 12:15 am

It should be obvious that the point behind ‘Notorious’ is the same point that hOllywood wants us all to believe. That somehow being a creator of art frees you from all morality. That somehow, writing a good song or making a good movie absolves you of all the crimes in your life. Sorry, it ain’t so.

luagha on January 18, 2009 at 1:03 pm

I liked Defiance very much. HOWEVER it wasn’t a very good, or maybe full is the better word, portrayal of The Bielski Brothers, who they were, all they did and what they stood for. If you’re so inclined I have a full opinion up at Infidel Bloggers Alliance.

midnight rider on January 19, 2009 at 11:07 am

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