I stayed home from work for a couple of days last week trying to not get my co-workers sick. While I worked from home I finished the Gauntlet: the latest Mystery Science Theater 3000 run.
These were just awful. I had to spend some time to recover from watching these. Stephanie, being the wiser partner in this marriage, decided not to finish the Gauntlet.
The second move, Atlantic Rim, is so awful it does nothing right as a film as far as I can tell. Nothing works. The characters don’t work. The plot doesn’t work. The effects certainly don’t work. The only thing this shitshow has going for it is the main character is a black man, which is unexpected.
I can only think the black guy is the hero because he’s the only one that gets a true heroic moment: Saving a kid from something, I think a fire or collapsing building or something. It’s hard to tell because the effects are just so bad here.
The movie doesn’t even present an anti-hero (the white guy who gets locked up) properly, because he’s completely unlikable and has no redeeming qualities at all. He even acts like he’s the hero of the story because he’s the white guy, I guess, and he “has” the girl.
An anti-hero isn’t just a lead character with a bad reputation. They are morally ambiguous at best with a code of morals they define for themselves and they do not break their own honor code. Any story highlighting an anti-hero has to show that honor code in action. It could be anything, really, that shows they are capable of caring about anything other than themselves. Ebeneezer Scrooge, to pull a name out of the pre-Christmas zeitgeist, is not an anti-hero because he’s reprehensible and our sympathy for him is built up slowly and it pays off because we see the heartbreak that shaped him and when he turns around he’s a delightful scamp. I don’t even expect a good anti-hero to turn around like Joe Hallenbeck in The Last Boy Scout, because any character who does loses series potential.
The sick, sad part of this is this stupid movie has a sequel, but only because the movie it’s mocking got one.
Now I’m depressed even just thinking about this one.