February 12, 2017, - 11:34 pm

Wknd Box Office: The LEGO Batman Movie, Fifty Shades Darker, John Wick: Chapter 2, Paterson

By Debbie Schlussel

There’s Hillary-style collectivist BS, a cheesy semi-porn movie, a killing-porn movie, and an uber-pretentious arthouse movie in theaters, this weekend. All of it new, none of it particularly good. Well, actually one of them is very good, but has a horrible set of messages . . . so, not good. And it has a Trump connection. A very close one.

* The LEGO Batman Movie – Rated PG: This movie is very funny, entertaining, clever, and cute. But that’s a problem because it openly declares that its message is, “It takes a village, not a Batman.” Hmmm . . . a chick who once thought she was something once wrote a book called, “It Takes a Village.” Remember her? Yup, Hillary Clinton. And her message in that book is the same one here: that it “takes a village” to raise your children, to save the world, to do or achieve anything. To hell with the individual. This is all about collectivism and communism. And socialism, too. “You didn’t build that.” Batman didn’t save that. He can’t–and didn’t–do any saving on his own. He needed women and others to help him. That’s the storyline here.

Oh, and did I mention that the Executive Producer of this movies is Steve Mnuchin, Donald Trump’s nominee for Treasury Secretary? You shouldn’t be surprised that he’s financing the leftist, anti-individualist message here. After all, his whole fortune was made courtesy of his primary business partner, George Soros. Yup, that’s right, Soros financed Mnuchin’s purchase of troubled banks throughout America, and Soros made him the mega-multi-millionaire that he is today. (And it goes without saying, that should trouble you.)

And on top of that, Will Arnett, who voices LEGO Batman in this movie, bragged to the hags of ABC’s The View that he marched in the London Women’s March. No word on whether or not he wore one of those ugly pink p-ssy hats. That he marched tells us all we need to know. That he bragged about it, well . . . case closed.

So, the story is this: LEGO Batman is a narcissistic, selfish, grandstanding buffoon and lonely guy with no family and nothing of substance to do once he gets home from saving people (or attempting to do so). He is in the middle of a mid-life crisis and spends his nights watching the cheesy romantic scenes from Jerry Maguire (“You had me at hello,” and so on). There’s also a new police commissioner in town. Commissioner Gordon has retired, and his daughter, Commissioner Barbara Gordon (Rosario Dawson) is now in charge. She rails against Batman as a lawless vigilante and begins the tone of the movie with her “It Take a Village, Not a Batman” mantra, which Batman, by the end of the movie, adopts. But until then, Batman is your typical Hollywood stock male sexist who tries to romance Barbara Gordon but is rebuffed.

The Joker and the other Batman villains get together to destroy Gotham after they’ve been let loose from a giant prison in the sky. Batman tries to foil and fight them off, but alone, he can’t quite do it. Meanwhile, Batman unintentionally adopts a young boy from a local orphanage, and the boy is a huge fan of his. But Batman largely ignores and ill-treats the boy, as he does his butler Alfred (Ralph Fiennes). Eventually, though, he realizes that he must work together with them and the female Commissioner Gordon–a feminist–in order to fight off the villains effectively and save the world. He works with the other three and their superhero alter egos for the happy ending.

The movie is super-bright and super-colorful, an attempt to further overload and shorten the attention spans of kids. There are also many very funny jokes in this movie, the vast majority of which are aimed at adults and which will go over kids’ heads. Some of the “jokes,” though, are lame and inappropriate for kids, such as the mocking of Robin’s real first name, Dick. Did they really have to put that in a kids’ movie? Come on.

Again, I hated the left-wing message–no, messages–of this movie with which we are hit over the head repeatedly And, so, even though it’s a funny, entertaining movie, I can’t give it a positive rating.

I’m not surprised by the tone or the socialist-cum-communist messages in this. The movie is loosely billed as a sequel to 2014’s The Lego Movie, which I didn’t see, but which is also supposed to have a similar far-left message promoting collectivism and attacking free enterprise and individualism.


Watch the trailer . . .

* Fifty Shades Darker – Rated R: Just as with the first incarnation of this movie, Fifty Shades of Grey (read my review), I hate-hate-hated this movie. The message: if you’re an unattractive plain Jane but you agree to become a sexual submissive and submit to torture, you too can live the beautiful life and end up with a marriage proposal from a billionaire. Yeah, that has a lot in common with reality. Not. Just creepy. This is the crap that Hollywood–which tells us it’s against sexual assault of women–serves up. Hollywood loves lecturing us, then perpetrating hypocrisy.

On top of the crappy message, this movie was just hilarious . . . unintentionally so. The lines were so cheesy and stupid that I laughed a lot . . . when I wasn’t supposed to. Aside from the multiple stupid sex scenes and torture devices that the female protagonist willingly and eagerly dons, the movie is even more corny and dumb than the stuff you’d see on Lifetime. The plot (if you can call this mess a plot) is right out of the early ’90s Lifetime substandard screenplays. Those and every bad Harlequin Romance paperback novel from the early ’80s.

The lead actress, Dakota Johnson, isn’t very attractive. In fact, she’s just an extremely mousy, dull, annoying person with a bad nose, zero personality, and not a single good feature of either of her Hollywood-has-been parents (Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson). I suppose that’s supposed to be part of the attraction here: middle-aged women who hate their husbands for no good reason can fantasize about being this plain chick living the life with a billionaire who ties her up and spanks her but then gives her ten-thousand-dollar designer gowns and a luxury ride (a red BMW). That’s the new feminism: getting tortured and beaten. Yay, Gloria Steinem and Michelle Hussein Obama!

After leaving her billionaire boyfriend, Christian Grey (former male model Jamie Dornan), Anastasia Steele (Johnson) starts her new job at a publishing house in Seattle. But Grey comes to win her back, and after she insists she can’t be bought and doesn’t want to engage in sexually submissive torture, she is in fact bought by Grey with the aforementioned gowns and lifestyle and goes back to being tortured, which is portrayed as some sort of sexy. Her boyfriend is possessive and hates her boss, and her boss wants her. I felt like I was watching a dumb, semi-porn version of Archie Comics with the men playing Veronica and Betty. And the woman at the center of their fight is Jughead. Yeah, it’s that bad, and worse.

The sex scenes are semi-porn, the plot is as non-existent as in real porn, and it’s all-around an incredibly bad movie complete with horrible acting.

The “highlight” of this movie is the grotesque close-up shots of Kim Basinger’s over-botoxified and extremely-ballooned face. It might have been a blowfish with a blonde wig on it. Hard to tell. I just know if a pin or needle were too close, there would be a giant pop.

Oh, and Dakota Johnson apparently added a “tribute” to her mother, Griffith, using two lines her mother uttered from Working Girl (another cheesy, overrated movie). Being a movie line person, I recognized the lines instantly . . . but, as with the rest of this movie, just didn’t care.


Watch the trailer . . .

* John Wick: Chapter 2 – Rated R: I almost feel like this is a direct reaction to the crap that is Fifty Shades Darker. Men gotta have shoot-’em-up movies like this to compensate for being dragged to horrible torture-filled cheesy movies like the Fifty Shades BS. But it’s still a crappy movie. I didn’t like the first John Wick movie (read my review), which involved Keanu Reeves killing a lot of people and destroying a lot of things . . . over a dog (and a classic car). But this one, while slightly better, is still just as stupid. The movie starts out with more killing and destruction over the aforementioned puppy (and car). But then, it devolves into something more stupid.

Wick (Reeves) thinks he’s finally out of “the life” (the life of being a hired hitman, mob thug, and assassin). But he’s visited by an Italian mob leader who wants Wick to murder the mobster’s sister. Of course, when he eventually gets sucked back into the life, the mob leader then wants revenge on Wick. And it’s yet another spree of killing porn–essentially a snuff film for no reason. And it mostly wasn’t entertaining, but for the brief few scenes in the neutral hotel/club where all killers are welcome and no killings are to take place (house rules).

I like a good shoot-’em-up movie, but this ain’t it. There’s no good-versus-evil here, as everybody, including John Wick, is bad, so there’s no moral “just rewards” here. And there is so much non-stop graphic killing that it gets kind of boring. This movie seemed to go on and on and on and on. It quickly became a bore.

If there was one cool part to the movie, it was when John Wick goes to Italy to go shopping for guns and custom-made tailored suits. The gun salesman bills his weapons as varietals and sells them as wine. The tailors offer Wick bullet-proof, armored material in his suits (it would be cool if they have anything like that in real life). But that’s a very brief part of the film.

The only credit to this movie is Reeves, who looks great for his 52 years–about ten years younger than that (though just as they say Black Don’t Crack, Reeves is part Chinese and Asian Don’t Crackasian . . . or something like that). But the John Wick movies aren’t art. They’re a paycheck. A very messy paycheck with little redeeming value. And not even much to enjoy.


Watch the trailer . . .

* Paterson – Rated R: You’ve probably seen a thousand movies like this: so pretentious, and trying oh sooooo hard to be quirky, to the point where the quirks are the gimmicks that constantly try to distract you from what is an incredibly boring, pointless, waste of your life–time you’ll never get back. This arthouse movie is even an insult to arthouse movies. I hated this and struggled to stay awake. Sadly, I succeeded and saw every painful second of this high-quality Gitmo torture material.

Adam Driver–the it-girl actor of Hollywood these days and all the rage ever since he debuted as annoying-as-hell Lena Dunham’s quirky boyfriend on her awful show “Girls”–stars in this. He plays a bus driver named Paterson who drives buses in Paterson, New Jersey. Hey, whatta coincidence! Oh, and he also sees pairs of twins all over the place–on his bus rides, on his walks to work, on his trudges through town and to a water-filled quarry. And he also sees twins when he’s writing his absolutely awful poetry.

If you watch this movie, it’s like the world’s worst version of Groundhog Day. The same thing happens over and over again. But, much worse, you are treated to hearing Paterson read his absolutely horrible “poems” over and over and over again. At some point, his quirky bulldog eats his poems notebook, destroying them all–an occurrence so obvious and predictable. But I wished the bulldog had done this at the very beginning of the movie, saving us all from the torture of these crappy poems repeated over and over again.

And on top of the poems and the twins and the bus driver named Paterson from Paterson who drives buses in Paterson, there is also Paterson’s quirky wife. She’s Iranian and wears quirky black and white outfits she makes herself. Their home is decorated with black and white furniture the wife decorates herself. And she makes cupcakes to sell at the local farmer’s market on the weekends. Those have black and white polka dots on them, too.

This movie is so overloaded with quirks and gimmicks, you’d think that at least that would be somewhat entertaining. But it isn’t. It’s just saccharine frosting that doesn’t mask the stinking rotten cake that lies thereunder.

Incredibly pointless, but great for insomnia.


Watch the trailer . . .

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15 Responses

Wow Homan sounds like a real winner. I wonder how long before some savvy spy videos his crude behavior and uses it against him? Can’t cure stupid. Is it just me or does he seem obsessed with his own private parts?

Jennifer on February 13, 2017 at 10:31 am

I’ve always thought, viz the collectivist message inherent in “The LEGO Batman Movie,” that the truth of Hillary’s message was more like, “It takes a village to raise an idiot” (I probably said it here before, but I’ll say it again).

But I wonder, wha’happened to the “Sheryl Sandberg Lean” ratings?

Concerned Patriot on February 13, 2017 at 10:53 am

Hi Dear Debbie thank you for sharing and May God bless you always with my Respect to you Tirdad.

TIRDAD GHARIB on February 13, 2017 at 12:25 pm

Watched Patterson a few weeks back, fell asleep to it. Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuull

MrBigBrain on February 13, 2017 at 2:19 pm

Thank you again Debbie for reviewing these movies so that we don’t have to see them! To be honest the whole idea of sitting passive in some movie theatre is sort of sickening to me. I do watch enough television so I’m not so out of touch with the world but American movies are so cartoonish and contrived. These movies are about as deep as a mud puddle.And boring.. I do on the weekend watch Turner Classic Movies and find these movies much more interesting. I did watch the Superman movie at a friends house and her dad was really into it.. I thought it was the dumbest movie evar. HUUUgs Kare

Karen on February 13, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    May I ask Karen what Superman movie did you see. Because the last three were in my opinion just plain trips to stinkville. Especially Batman V Superman Dawn of Justice. I’m still trying to get the nearly 3 hours of my life back on that one.

    Ken B on February 14, 2017 at 9:00 am

      It was Batman fighting Superman and then Wonder Woman showed up to join in the apocalyptical fighting at the end. Sorry I can’t provide the actual title, I totally checked out from the movie so it could have been a batman movie. Anyway, they were all fighting and they may have joined forces to fight somebody else.. but Wonder Woman was totally bad ass Huggs!

      Karen on February 14, 2017 at 11:28 am

        That was Batman V Superman Dawn of Justice. To me the only good thing about that movie was Wonder Woman. You’re right she was bad ass and could’ve taken Doomsday all by herself. They could’ve left Superman nuked in space and Batman could’ve went back to Gotham. I’m a big superhero fan and that was the only reason I didn’t walk out of the theater. That and my son who loves Superman.

        Ken B on February 14, 2017 at 1:04 pm

          Hi Ken B.!
          Do you know the name of the actress that played Wonder Woman in that movie? (I could google but too lazy) Is there any other planned Wonder Woman movie with her in it? I assumed there would be some sequel planned with the way that movie ended. I agree she was the most interesting and enigmatic character in that movie and can see why you did not walk out. Plus I’m sure she provided a little eye candy for the guys! Huuuugs! Kare

          Karen on February 15, 2017 at 10:34 am

Thank you for making about the only honest movie reveiws available in todays world. I rarely go to movies anymore since I began reading DS reviews years ago. I do find myself going to more and more plays. These are big stage plays like “Mama Mia”. and “Kinky Boots” to small stage plays likec”Toxic Waste”. and “First Date”. Plays are much more expensive but a big saving compared to wasteing my money on hollywood garbage. It would be great to now see occasional play reviews.

Larry Shandler on February 14, 2017 at 7:37 am

The mayor in the Lego Batman movie also looks like Hillary Clinton circa the 90’s. I noticed the socialist commie message in the movie also and countered it by telling my son how great HE is and that HE can do anything….

Frank on February 14, 2017 at 11:34 am

Dakota needs to be placed back on the shelf. Is the Left into BDSM now? As Debbie noted, Hollywood is entirely against the “Rape Culture”, except when they can make a profit off of it. Also, someone should ask how a daughter succeeds a father in a government post? Is nepotism really a feminist virtue?

Worry01 on February 14, 2017 at 1:44 pm

Thank you Debbie for more of your in depth movie reviews. I’ve already been slated to take the yungins to see The LEGO Batman Movie this weekend. To bad that it stars that bozo Arnett and is financed by a newly minted(no pun intended)White House Soros lackey. Hopefully it won’t take a village to keep me interested. It’s funny that this same movie is beating out all of the others including Fifty Shades of Darker Crapola. My much better half thinks like me in that we’d rather see John Wick 2 than that mess with the oh so attractive Dakota Johnson. Why not just star Maggie Gyllenhaal and be done with it. Total pass up. Can’t watch anything with Adam Driver in it because I’m still laughing at his portrayal in Star Wars The Force Awakens. Good grief C-3PO was more menacing than that guy. Too bad he’ll be in the next film due out this December. I’ll pretend to be scared in any scene he’s in. Debbie how do you feel about FNC’s film critic Kevin McCarthy. There is a select few on that channel that I reach for the mute button when they come on. Rivera, Williams, Perino, Harf (who thought that was a good idea), Father Morris and this guy. He just seems over the top for me. I would love to see you take his place.

Ken B on February 14, 2017 at 1:49 pm

Hey Deb, a pleasant day to you.All of this stuff is great if you’re an insomniac who needs help getting to sleep. Notice how the media’s railing on about Ms.Conway’s endorsement of Ivanka’s products?. Just ridiculous especially when you consider Bill Clinton’s pardon of a dozen or so Puerto Rican terrorists to ensure the Puerto Rican population of New York’s vote for his wife’s first senatorial campaign. Movies are such the pits nowadays. Be warned with Wonder Woman they’re putting her in World War 1 instead of World War 2. I guess her fighting nazis like Captain America was onsidered to be icky nowadays by clueless studio executives. Oh joy that it’s directed by a female director who only got the job I think, for a sex quota like all these women on sports channels like the NFL network do.Nothing wrong with a woman director long as she can direct like Kimberly Peirce did with Carrie. This one will possbily prove both sides are capable of blowing a huge movie in the name of politics.

Robert Swords on February 15, 2017 at 2:13 pm

People have recommended local art style movies houses rather than the mainstream like AMC for example. Here in the Dallas area we have the newer artsy ones like the Angelica. But I would like to go to the Innwood theatre Dallas on Lover Lane. I know, the name is befitting since. But it is said to be historic. Last night I watched ‘Little Women’ again. I think I’ve seen this three times now but it is charming and interesting. On the weekend I watched ‘I remember Mama’, another interesting movie. Ha. the theme on TMC is Oscars so you can see what I watch! Hugs Kare

Karen on February 15, 2017 at 4:15 pm

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