Monday, August 1, 2011


In the heart of Sunset Boulevard, a secret underground psychokinetic transmission antennae broadcasted a message delivered straight into our subconscious: watch Cowboys & Aliens and The Smurfs in equal measure.

Cowboys & Aliens is this weeks offering from the Bay-Snyder school of promotion: offer a film chock full of nerd-baiting familiarity to get the AICN hype machine rolling, make it loud, empty and unmemorable and hope that some joy might trickle down to the audience.

The Smurfs is yet another in a continuing series of films where old cartoon characters jump out of their world and invade the very real and boring time-space of the present day (in 3D) and pester regular, nimble thirtysomethings. Just what Peyo had in mind.

Nostalgia. It was the bane of popular culture in the previous decade, and it's going to take an open refusal of this sort of thing (money) to stop it. Now that they've algorithmically led us to the box office, it's time for phase two: childhood properties without any discernible characters or plot ready to be harvested in time for next summer. I'm looking at you, Battleship. Patiently waiting for Crossfire.

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