Saturday Night Double-Feature

Last night, I skipped Santa Monica’s yearly not-the-Fourth-of-July fireworks show, and, instead, watched two very bad movies on cable. Or parts of them. One was “Going the Distance” with Justin (“I’m a Mac, and no matter what I do for the rest of my life, that’s what you’ll remember me for”) Long and Drew Barrymore, playing two annoying and unpleasant people who are dealing with long-distance relationship issues. Before it ended I was honestly hoping for one of them to be killed in a plane crash during one of their expensive, booked-last-minute, cross-country flights.

The other turkey was “Robin Hood” with Russell Crowe (ah, Crowe/Turkey, I get the bird pun now; THANKS UNIVERSE!), that I had to turn off before I threw things at my Bravia, because the film’s whole premise was a complete rewrite of English history, with Richard being killed in battle returning from the Crusades (no, kids, he was not), and a rewrite of the myth, with “Robin” now a thug impersonating the dead Robin of Locksley (spelled “Loxley” in the credits).

The world did not need another expensive cinematic buggering of the Robin Hood myth—though, it would have been better if the mythic reboot had a storyline where Robin is captured by a wizard and cast into a deep sleep, only to awaken centuries later and, through a series of rom-com coincidences and cute misunderstandings, eventually ends up attacking, robbing, and killing Justin and Drew in “Going the Distance.” I’d buy a Blu-ray player just to watch that Robin Hood reboot over and over again.

“Green Lantern”: It doesn’t (completely) suck

OK, it wasn’t the best film I’ve ever seen, nor even the best film I’ve seen this week, but “Green Lantern” is far from the turkey that I’ve seen described in the press. It’s a good deal better than “Thor,” for example. I saw it today as part of my “take a walk around the neighborhood and blow off work” solstice celebration, and was entertained. If you like the comic book, you’ll probably like it. If you don’t like the comic book, of course, there’s really no reason to see it.

One suggestion: if you do want to see it, skip the 3D version. I found it distracting and not particularly well-executed. Go see the 2D version, and, preferably, at a reduced-price matinée.

A few minutes later: On the other hand, I can’t say that the recaps here are totally unfair: