Thursday, June 21, 2012

ATLANTAAAAAA!!!! - Cyborg (1989)

For no reason, really, I'm going to blatantly jack Brian Roan's writing device on this one. Call it an exercise in broadening my creative horizons if you wish. Or a total lack of such creativity. Either way, my writing cannot change the fact that I hated every minute of Cyborg except for that one boob shot, and I had to wait 29 agonizing minutes before it happened.

Dear Cyborg,

What the fuck? Why are you so boring and lifeless? How much did Jean-Claude Van Damme get paid to do nothing for the majority of your runtime? Are you supposed to be a star vehicle? If so, your entire existence mirrors a particular scene near the conclusion of your rousing tale.

What? At least there was a roundhouse kick.

Where to start with you...ah, yes: the bad guy pirate dude. You either thought your main villain had the gravitas of a demented James Earl Jones, or you were pressed for time and couldn't find anyone better. Everything that comes out of that asshole's mouth is pure gold, but it's not the kind you can sell. It's the kind that gets poured over your skin as you lay there, helpless, screaming for someone to deaden your senses before the smelting pot is fully emptied. Look, Cyborg, I'm not expecting anyone super fantastic to play opposite 1989 Van Damme. That's reserved for Van Damme circa 1993. Even so, I'm not sure the guy you actually used could read the script, let alone interpret anything written within it.


Besides the stupefyingly bad antagonist, another gripe I have with you is your lack of any kind of actual fighting. This is made worse by the fact that you have Jean-Claude Van Damme as your lead. Going in, I was under the impression there would be at least one cool fight scene. In that regard, you let me down. Not gently like a babe to his crib, mind you; rather, you left me feeling empty and confused like the victim of a runaway bride. To use a long-worn phrase to describe the excitement contained in every blow, my grandmother could probably kick the ass of every pirate under your employ, and that of Van Damme to boot.

This is actually nowhere near the worst fight scene in the movie. I really just wanted to include the falling dummy at the end.

I know it's too late to really take my criticisms to heart, Cyborg, and that's unfortunate. I'm not yet done giving you the healthy dose of shit not that you necessarily deserve, but that you ultimately need. What else about you drew my ire? How about your lame ass attempt at padding your narrative by inserting the exact same flashback like 80 times? Do you remember doing that? Because I remember watching it. All 80 times.

Just picture watching this 79 more times. I'm sorry to ask that of you.

 Oh, wait. Let me go back to all the shitty fight scenes you somehow mistook for something worth yelling "Print!" about. You do realize, of course, that one of the purposes of a fight is to actually have choreography, right? By that, I mean people should hit one another at some point.

Or not, I guess.

In one of the most, um, interesting scenes on offer, Van Damme is crucified like the Messianic figure he's oh-so-cleverly disguised as. That's fine; I have no problem with that. It's a bit hokey, but whatever. It only gets interesting once your hero decides to literally kick himself off of the cross he's been crucified on for the past 24 hours or so.

You just have to want it. Also, I don't think that was English.

There's also the fact that after he freed himself from crucifixion using nothing but desperate anger and rubber soles, Van Damme then proceeded to walk from...wherever all the way to Atlanta. Oh, speaking of Atlanta, Atlanta is the place to be, right, Cyborg? Not only do all of your plot elements converge in Atlanta, but I discovered a new drinking game using the word Atlanta. Atlanta, Atlanta, Atlanta, Atlanta. Also, Atlanta.

Needless to say, there's not a lot to this drinking game. Every time any of the characters says the word Atlanta, take a drink. Cyborg, you somehow saw fit to have the word Atlanta uttered 15 times in your 86-minute runtime. College kids, middle-aged drunkards, and the Irish all salute you.


But apart from your now contributing to rampant alcohol poisoning, what else did I take away from watching you? Well, for one, I finally learned the proper way to elude and ultimately kill a pirate if he's ever hunting me down in a labyrinthine sewer system.

What's the correct solution? As always, The Splits.

I also learned that if I can't escape capture by stretching my groin out over a man's head, I can attempt to kick him so hard that I end up falling on my ass as a result, even if I actually hit him.

Van Damme had, like, no idea there was another dude. Why? Because he was on his face.

But in the end, Cyborg, I was able to find the kernel of truth somehow hidden within your thread-bare narrative, and it's that some obstacles can't be danced around or finessed. There comes a point in every man's life when you just have to embrace emotion and run head-long into whatever's in your way, strategy be damned. I'll proudly proclaim how I learned that from you.


  1. A big part of the awesomeness of this, for me, was that after your intro, I heard Brian's voice narrating the piece as I read.

    It was a hysterical cross between two vastly different styles. :D

    1. Glad to hear it. Not sure why I wanted to do it this way, but I think it worked.

    2. Probably because you were trading off on twitter the other night with Brian about RotPotA. LOL He's got this magic touch for taking movies too seriously at times, and then he completely baffles you by supporting something cheesy. It's great. LOL :D

      You should try to get on OTE... I know he's always looking for guests!

  2. I'm still not sure if this post and all its clips have me wanting to watch Cyborg again...or running for the hills in the other direction. I'll probably choose the latter. Does Atlanta have hills?

    1. Not sure if Atlanta has hills, but it has a cure for the apocalypse plague.


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