Nine Dollars

what’s it worth to me?

Nine dollars. You can buy several things for nine dollars.

You can buy a pack and a half of cigarettes.

You can buy two six-packs of Diet Coke.

You can buy half a tank of gas.

Two cartons of milk.

Lots of bread.

Two Chicken Nugget Supersize meals.

Ten writable CDs for burning.

You can rent three movies.

Catnip for Taylor.

Duct Tape for Cal’s mouth.

Britney Spears stickers.

Toothpicks. Lots of toothpicks.

Rubber Cement.

A block of wood. You can glue the toothpicks to the block of wood and then belly flop onto the thousands of sharp, wooden points.

You can buy a Yes album.

You can roll your eyes.

You can buy a spork and then use it to scoop out your eyeballs.

You can eat burned toast that you left out on your porch for an hour.

You can drop heavy things on your feet.

You can have someone hit you with their car.

You can jump from your roof into rose bushes.

You can slide your teeth across a chalkboard.

You can pay some kid to kick you in the shin.

You can eat heated up Fancy Feast.

You can slam your head against a block of ice.

You can slam your nipple in a car door.

You can eat a bacon smoothie.

You can spend the night in jail.

You can try and jam a penny under your eyelid.

All of these things would be more pleasurable than the nine dollars I spent last night to see the craptacular craptacular assfest known as Moulin Rouge.

I owe apologies to Secrets and Lies, Brothers McMullin, Autumn in New York, Graveyard Shift, Independence Day, and several other moving pieces of art that I have previously referred to as “Worst movies ever.” Because they simply aren’t.

I’ve watched videotapes of Bat Mitzvahs with more tension.

This movie is so bad. So bad. SO. BAD. And I was either in a theater filled with people that worked for Moulin Rouge, or there was something special in the coffee that they served.

–sidenote: only in Los Angeles will you find people just walking into a movie theatre with a cup of coffee. There’s no sugar, calories, fat or food in coffee!

Anyway, they were clapping at the end of musical numbers. They were sobbing at the end. Sobbing. Grown men sobbing and sniffling and weeping. When the movie ended they all sat hushed with the solemn awe reserved for Schindler’s List. Then they erupted in thunderous applause. They must have worked for the film.

The only other option is that I have a tiny, cold, black, cynical heart and I refuse to believe that. I bawled my eyes out to The Iron Giant. I can’t even watch some stupid McDonald’s commercials without breaking down. I cry to the sound of Thom Yorke’s voice when he hits a certain note, even if he’s saying, “Sleepy jack the fire drill.”

I’m not a cold, black-hearted cynic. I’m not. I have feelings and emotions and taste and this movie offended all three.

Oh, the blue-screens! So bad! They looked like paper dolls pasted to this background of blue. So bad.

And the songs. There’s one part where they sing love songs back and forth and I swear to you I wrote this sketch three years ago with Monks Night Out and just performed it at the Austin Music Hall in April and when a comedy troupe is doing what you think is a romantic spectacle, then you’re doing something wrong.

The music. There was one point where a man starts singing, “Like a Virgin,” and once those three words came out of his mouth, my body propelled itself out of my chair. I stood up, grabbed my popcorn and my Sprite and ran up the movie theater aisle to get as far away as possible from the movie. I went out and up the stairs to the bathroom and sat on the fainting couch and sipped my drink. Anywhere to get away from the movie. I noticed they had a “Lounge” sign like the one that was stolen from us months ago, and I looked around for a movie person to ask where they got the sign. Everyone else that worked for the theater was moving as quickly as possible to ignore the crap-ass-stank music wafting between the closed theater doors.

After the movie my ear was bleeding. Literally. My earring hole just started bleeding.

Worst movie ever. Ever! It’s the opposite of good. It’s un-good. It’s un-fun. Un-decent.

Who were those people with the laughter and the tears and the clapping? Do I know any of those people? Am I missing something? Oh, it was so bad. Ewan McGregor can sing, okay? That doesn’t mean he has to just keep hitting that note over and over again.

They just kept singing. It would never end. They did a cover of Roxanne. They jumbled up all of the words to Smells Like Teen Spirit. The film looks like Baz Lurmann just took all of the pieces of film that he had, cut them into tiny bits, threw them in the air and then shellacked them when they hit the ground and that was the film editing process. Eight thousand different cuts of film all put in an order that makes no sense. There’s no place for your eye to follow. Half an hour in I’m thinking, “I have no idea what’s going on but I think I just saw that girl’s vagina.”

When you start thinking of laundry, entries, friends you haven’t called, the state of your car, how the inside of your nose feels, Tae-Bo, Jenny McCarthy, Frank Lloyd Wright, invoices and the lyrics of “Somewhere” while you’re watching a movie and you find those thoughts to be comforting because you don’t have to actually watch the movie while you think about them? You’re watching a bad movie.

And Jeff, if you’re reading right now, I don’t want to hear it. I know you love Nicole Kidman with a thousand flames of passion, but she made a bad movie to forget about her Scientology divorce and that’s all there is to it and if she doesn’t know she’s in a bad movie then you need to break up with her, Jeff. Break up with her. Don’t let her bad ruin your good taste. Don’t let her pretty perfect skin blind you to the fact that even John Leguizamo couldn’t save this film. Don’t let her hip-shake hypnotize you into forgetting that she belted out numbers and then gave the mini-hiccup-cough of consumption and we were to believe that she’s only sick when people remind her? Jeff. Walk away from the light. Just put the Weezer CD back on and wait for “Hedwig and the Angry Inch.”

Oh, this movie is so bad. I didn’t even want to see it. I knew I wasn’t ready to enter the world of Moulin Rouge. But I didn’t know that the world would be so never ending, cold and painful. I never wanted to leave a movie so badly in my life. I wanted to run from the theater. If I still smoked I would have stayed outside smoking the entire film. If I had brought my purse out with me when I ran from the musical number I would have taken a cab to a coffee shop and then came back in time for the end of the film. Because it’s seventeen hours long, people.

Today I’m trying to cleanse. I’m surrounded in the new Radiohead, Lucinda Williams (okay, all of you can stop with the pestering and the moaning and the pleading. I’m going to give it a try), Spoon, De La Soul and the Pixies B-Sides. If all of these things don’t get “Come What May” out of my head, I don’t think there’s any hope for me.

And “Come What May” is so ripped off from “Somewhere” that I’m surprised Babs didn’t just have this film shut down.

Woah. Check out that last sentence. What has happened to me? Who am I?

I hate myself.

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