Original-Cin debuts a snippet of snark between two filmgoing notables – erstwhile TVO Saturday Night At The Movies host Thom Ernst and Yuk Yuk’s founder and Canadian comedy pioneer Mark Breslin.
MARK: Well, Thom, you could call this the Summer of Disappointments, beginning with this week's Valerian. A measly $17 million box office return proves that even sci-fi nerds have their limits. Although I'm strangely attracted to any race with a fourteen inch waist. I lost track of the plot pretty early, so I could only obsess about their diet regimen; not a good sign. What do you think? Atkins or Paleo?
THOM: Now that you mention it - I’m pretty sure l’ve seen the planet they live on spray-painted on the side of a van; All orbs, beaches and jutting rocks. Not a lot of vegetation or wildlife. Unless they occasionally dine on those Gremlin like lizards that poop pearls.
MARK: Don't know what the filmmakers were smoking, but it must be better than the Disney execs who greenlit the Cars 3 script. Finally! A kids’ movie about early retirement. Something my six-year-old could really relate to. Cars 3 is an epic fail, even if it minted cash around the globe. Thom? Did your kid like it?
THOM: Like it? I had hold her back from signing us up as Uber drivers.
I went along for the ride with Cars 3. Sure, there are a few bumps in the road. But I fell into a kind of comfortable nostalgia that took me back to the days when Burt Reynolds still had a thing for Sally Field. Plus, there's a subtle feminist twist thrown in. Of course, it’s no Wonder Woman when it comes to female empowerment. But it’s nice to know that even anthropomorphic female cars can be revved up into positive gender roles.
MARK: I'll try not to sneer at Wonder Woman. In fact, I really liked the first two thirds of it. But when a minor character turned into a major supernatural beastie, it left me behind.
And why do all these superhero movies have to end the same way? With a fight between Good and Evil, when in real life it's more like a fight between Not So Great and Somewhat Worse?
THOM: you'll get no argument from me. Perhaps I waited too long to see Wonder Woman. The hype got the best of me. Really was hoping for more Wonder. When it was good, it was great, but I agree with you - the first two acts were great but the battle of the titans at the end? *yawn*.
MARK: Which brings us to the new Spider-Man, or should I say Spider-Teen, or Spider-Forayoungadultmarket. I actually liked it. Michael Keaton was a credible, earthly villain. The picture's youthfulness worked for it. I didn't expect much except a rehash but I was pleasantly surprised.
THOM: Best Spider-Man of the bunch.
MARK: And because I have so much respect for you, I won't even ask about The Mummy - which I refused to see because I'm confident MY own mummy would be more interesting, may she rest in peace.
Them Ernst is a longtime broadcaster and film critic living in Toronto.
He was formerly the producer and host of TVOs Saturday Night at the Movies.
Thom can be heard weekly on This Movie’s About You, available on iTunes.
Mark Breslin founded the Yuk Yuk's comedy club chain - launching pad for the likes of Jim Carrey, Russell Peters and Norm MacDonald. He produced CBC's Friday Night with Ralph Benmergui and was a story consultant for Kenny vs Spenny. He was artistic director of the Humber College Comedy program and a founder of the Canadian Comedy Awards.