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World Trade Center Review
by Doom, the Red Fox and Nerdlinger
guest starring Pseudo-Intellectual College Student Douchebag
"courage and survival"? The towers fell, didn't they?
When the Eagle Cries! Dun dun! When the Eagle...Cries! Oh, hello. So, World Trade Center is the second in a series of three films so far to tackle 9/11 (the first and third being United 93 and Reign Over Me, respectively). And so far it's the most fucking boring of the three, which says a lot since Reign Over Me stars a retarded Adam Sandler (I mean retarded even for Sandler) who's obsessed with Shadow of the Colossus and The People's Court. Directed by Oliver Stone, World Trade Center gives new meaning to the word 'boring'. I think we should petition Webster's Dictionary and Oxford to officially append the entry for 'boring' to include an alternate meaning, which would be "the film World Trade Center directed by Oliver Stone". Keep in mind, this bullshit is OVER 2 hours long. You're going to need coffee or speed to stay awake during this snoozer of a bastardization of a 'film'.
Here we go. Another 9/11 themed film that is high in length and low on fun, both for the viewers and for those that had to make or star in this terrible film. I think you know what the plot is about: a bunch of cops are on duty and are brought to the World Trade Center because they are supposed to save the people from inside the towers. After about twenty minutes of doing absolutely nothing, an order from Nicolas Cage himself so that he wouldn't have to be any real danger, they end up on the first floor looking for more gear just as the tower collapses in on them. Only two of the police officers survive the fall, having half of their legs being trapped under rubble all the while getting more layers coming over the heads along with some kind of sort of flamethrowers shooting at them. Well, it is a Hollywood film after all. During the next, oh, hour and a half of filming, the two trapped men reminisce about how they miss their families while flashing back to those families who they want to meet with again because they are afraid they will never see them again. More switching back and fourth between the rubble men and their crying wives, and finally some marines find where they are trapped in the rubble. They are saved, there is a big party, everyone is happy, and all the terrorists are hunted down in the cave in which they live. The end, goodbye.
The whole thing about 9/11 happening was the whole plane flying into the World Trade Center thing, yet in the film the whole plane flying into building thing takes about five seconds, isn't shown on the screen, and is only briefly mentioned on TV screens. This just doesn't make any sense, as they could have at least used some of the, you know, plane crashing materials as this was all about said plane crash. I don't give a damn about two guys complaining about how they are in pain for over an hour of film when I could have seen actual footage of a plane hitting the World Trade Center, which would have been much more emotional and entertaining. What do you think, Nicolas Cage screaming for about an hour is really emotional? Or would the fact that you would either see the towers fall or a plane actually slam into one of them would have been just that more interesting. Don't you think?
The plot itself had little to do with the actual World Trade Center and instead had its focus on the two cops who survived, with their stupid families worrying about them at home. This is false advertisement if I've ever seen it. Why the hell would I go to a movie called World Trade Center if I wanted to see two cops crushed under rubble for 1 and a half hours? They could have just as easily made this movie about a cave-in for a mine or a couple of guys stranded on a mountain or something and they would not have to change any of the script at ALL. No one really wants to see crap like that, so they decided to slap on the old 9/11 remembrance logo to get some saps to go and see it because of all the tragedies that happened on that day. Well, I can bet this movie at least got a decent turnout in those hick states, like Dizz's own (aka Texas). What can definitely be said about this entire plot is that it was much worse than United 93's. At least that movie had interesting characters you could identify with, like Unibrow Asad or Cowardly German. Not to mention an ending literally worthy of a flaming crash.
Look at this picture for 90 minutes straight. It's the same as actually watching the movie.
Then there's the plot structure of this shit. The horrible, intolerable plot structure. Basically, it's DC's Countdown on film. Constant scene changes from the officers in the rubble, over to the wife who doesn't believe she loves her husband anymore, over to Sheboygan, WI and back to the officers still under those damn rocks. Christ, just as you think the scene's going to linger a bit so as to actually develop the plotline and it's back to one of the other stupid ancillary plots. At least focus on one boring point of view, movie! There are so many useless transitions, seemingly done just to give more excuses for random characters we see once or maybe twice to call the terrorists "bastards". And then it's time go back over to the families and what have you! Seriously, Countdown may actually have a better structure than this, because at least I can go back and reread easily to fully comprehend the story, whereas anyone seeing this in theaters was just royally screwed. And I could close the book when I get pissed off (which is often), whereas World Trade Center never stops for more than 2 hours.
Holy shit, I think even his fake mustache is receding...
Continuing on with the characters, no one can doubt that this has some of the least interesting and most annoying characters ever, which spells doom for a movie that's supposed to be classy and purporting to deal with these "tough" issues. Nicolas Cage's guy is standard 'toughish' guy who has the stones to lead people even in difficult situations, and Michael Pena is the guy who's a minority. Those are their characters. They have no depth or identifiable traits because the film keeps them in the generic hero mold (despite them not DOING ANYTHING EVER) for over 2 hours. I suspect this is due to their real-life counterparts having such close involvement with the production of World Trade Center. Obviously they're not going to put in anything that depicts the guys as less than paragons of freedom and democracy, because then Oliver Stone wouldn't have the nice little 'approved by the real guys' feather in his hack cap. Likewise, the characters of the guys' wives express no actual conflicts other than your basic 'I'm pregnant' or 'I don't love him enough'. Not to mention the saccharine little bits of Maggie Gyllenhaal deciding to name their daughter-to-be the name Michael Pena wanted all this time. Nothing like almost dying in 9/11 to settle a dispute in the man's favor. Wonder if she also agreed to do anal upon his recovery from the rubble... Basically, there are no complex or layered characters, just cardboard cutouts for us patriotic Americans to root on for some reason that's never been made clear to me.
I suppose I should tell you about the acting now. What can you say about the acting? How about it's some of the worst of the calendar year of 2006? For God's sake, anything starring Nicolas Cage that requires him to convey emotion and things other than 'Nicolas Cage is a hack whose hairline is pulling a David Copperfield'. Cage's acting for this requires him to don a fake mustache probably put together via merging some of his back hair together and for him to use a really awful New York accent. His entire role's a fucking joke. Yet somehow, somehow, SOMEHOW Nicolas Cage's acting isn't the worst in the film. It's the others who suck the most. There was more emotion coming from the extras than the main actors. Granted, the actors for the movie were probably extras themselves, with no more than 5 hours of training prior to filming the first scene. The techniques they decided to use to portray their emotions was shit. Apparently, the director had this notion that constant screaming equates to drama. Every fucking time the movie goes back to the two police officers, it's just ten minutes of them screaming back and forth at each other; nothing more. Way to capture the audience's interest, though the screaming was probably just to wake up everyone who fell asleep during this garbage in the theatre. The most ridiculous emotional bullshit, though, involves Pena's pregnant wife, who constantly acts like a pregnant bitch. She's so annoying you'll be hoping for a miscarriage or at least some stillborn action.
"WHERE'S MY FUCKING HUSBAND WHERE'S MY FUCKING HUSBAND RATCHET AND CLANK RATCHET AND CLANK RATCHET AND CLANK"
Oliver Stone, as mentioned before, directs this garbage with all the quality of one of those Hallmark network movies of the week about the miraculous something of the someone who's trapped somewhere but eventually gets out due to determination and something else vaguely defined and stupid. The feel good stories that never actually exist in reality, unless they're based on true events. In that case everything's whitewashed to provide a convenient narrative easily understood by the brain damaged (the audience most conducive to this type of shit). I really did expect more from Mr. Stone. Although Alexander was unadulterated shit, and a lot of his other recent shit hasn't been so hot, I thought it impossible for him to totally lose all of his directorial skills for more than 120 minutes. Any hack in Hollywood could've done this nondescript cinematography and shot composition. If I didn't hate this movie so much I would have this article change directions into an article postulating that there had to be a second director somewhere behind the grassy knoll. But I fucking despised this, so I'm more than willing to let Olly take blame for directing one of the worst films in the past 10 years. He said he was trying to make a film about heroism and hope, but he ended up making one about two losers who get trapped in a well/pile of rubble for 2 hours until someone rescues them from the shitty piece of motion picture debris. Fuck him and the sanctimonious horse he rode in on.
I remember there was initial controversy amongst movie and conspiracy geeks over Oliver Stone doing a conventional, stereotypical bathos film instead of a politically charged conspiracy thriller, such as what he did with JFK. We have with us Pseudo-Intellectual College Student Douchebag, for whom chiding popular figures for 'selling out' is not a new thing.
Dude, what happened, Oliver Stone? I remember loving JFK because you told us, inaccurately or not, how the assassination wasn't done by Lee Harvey Oswald. And now you have the opportunity to do the same thing for 9/11, but you hold back? What's up, man?! I don't understand at all how you DIDN'T make a 9/11 was an inside job film, man. You could've added sooo much credence to The Cause! This World Trade Center movie is all emotion and Nicolas Cage. I don't want to see that! I want to see proof that Dick Cheney and his cabal PLANNED 9/11 and only a major Hollywood motion picture can unravel it. I used to respect you, but no more. You're totally a sellout, and I'm NOT going to buy the special edition HD-DVD version of JFK now. You...you...enabler of the fascists, you!
Well said, Pseudo-Intellectual College Whatever Whatever. Another problem with World Trade Center is the massive suspension of disbelief the viewer needs to even comprehend the events within the film. For example, we're expected to believe the NYPD (or Port Authority PD - whatever, same shit, different logo) is heroic instead of the racist band of thugs they proved they were all throughout the 1990s. Not to mention how most of the film's events are predicated on us caring about the families of some fucking NYC fascist pigs. We already know their husbands live (as opposed to the ones who die, whom Stone doesn't focus on at all), so why the fuck should we care about their movements from point A to point Teary Eyed Reunion. Also, I have a hard time believing Rudy Giuliani didn't singlehandedly save all of the buried rescue workers himself. The media told me he did! After all, he is America's Mayor and I remember everyone telling me he was a fucking miracle worker who was responsible for something something GETTING TOUGH ON TERRORISM. On the plus side, though, the film must have been very cost efficient. Or the entire production was one big money laundering operation for the mafia. It was basically Men Under A Rock for the entire running time, meaning they only needed maybe $5 million, to pay the actors and pay for the rock. So I don't see how they could have spent the $63 million budget on the actual movie. Maybe they gave the rest of the allocated money to the faaaaaamilies. Wait, no, the mafia money laundering theory is much more likely.
But what sucks the most about World Trade Center - and believe me, that's saying something - is the fucking disgusting amount of propaganda. With every swell of the fucking score and the amount of American fucking flags around in every scene, it's like Stone created this as the ultimate in Giuliani jerk productions. It is Exhibit No. 89 of why America fucking sucks; our USAcentric myopia obscures the fact that everyone fucking hates us for the damn justifiable reason of us being self-centered, myopic retards who drown all our 'American' films with blind patriotism, token 'boo hiss bad guys' and the ever present theme of America, right or wrong, always being whiter/righter than all those fucking foreign countries in the world. Maybe Osama bin Laden is actually a time traveler and he saw this piece of shit in 2006 and then decided he had to attack the United States in retribution for this shitty, shitty piece of dreck. I would fully support that reasoning.