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the beautiful destruction

Thursday, March 30, 2006


HBO screening room for Kazaam
Pictured: Photo retrieved after typing "HBO" into Google's image search.

Winter in Pennsylvania—which is extremely long and usually cold enough to cause your nipples to snap right off your chest—is the perfect time to hibernate, whether you're a bear or a human. However, since humans cannot sleep for six months straight like our dirty, picnic basket thieving, cave-dwelling counterparts, we (the citizens of Pennsylvania) are forced to remain wide awake during this bleak, neverending season. The aforementioned weather, as well as my current disgust with eking out a 9 to 5 existence, are the reasons I've become a shameless entertainment whore (no, I'm not stripping at middle-aged womens' 40th birthday parties or hustling my "wares" for cash to crackheads downtown, though now that I mention the idea...). What I mean to say is, television has been my salvation this winter.

While I've previously confessed my love for TiVO, trash TV, and countless films in my posts, I currently have a grievance to file with my new arch nemesis: HBO. That's right, the folks responsible for such addictive television as Carnivale, Deadwood, and The Wire have really shit the bed when it comes to providing quality movies (or as they calll them, "Feature Presentations"). You see, I pay for DirectTV to be piped into the living room of my fortified woodland compound. Honestly, I'm happy to pay for it. I've got access to some great channels like IFC, Sundance, Cartoon Network, and oodles of others. However, I also have eight different HBOs. EIGHT DIFFERENT HBOs! All of which suck extremely bad.

Last night, after working late, getting home late, and eating dinner late, I decided to unwind by watching a bit of tube (this was the more responsible alternative to drinking myself to sleep). After flipping channels aimlessly for about 10 minutes, I decided to see what HBO had to offer. Now, as many of you know, HBO often plays the same two or three movies in heavy rotation. For example, last month, Ocean's Twelve played more times than I urinate in a 30 day period. Sure, Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Catherine Zeta-Jones, I see the appeal of the beautiful people. But come the fuck on, why am I paying $12 a month for HBO when I could have rented the cursed movie for $4?

Which leads me to the current source of my rage. While flipping through my multiple HBOs, I stumble across a movie where a bizarre-looking and rather forgettable child actor is being followed around by a goofy and oddly animated Shaquille O'Neal. What the fuck is this shit? I think to myself. So I click the "info" button on my remote, which tells me the following:

Kazaam (1996). Starring Shaquille O'Neal, Francis Capra, and Ally Walker. Being a lone young boy in the "hood" is dangerous and unpleasant. This is what Max experiences when he fools a gang of local toughs who cornered him at school. The gang finds out that the key he gave them is of no value in committing a robbery, and they chase him through the streets of his neighborhood, bent on revenge. He tries to escape by slipping into the open door of an old warehouse, but they follow him there, too. While running from them through aisles filled with all kinds of stuff, he bumps into an old boom box. By doing that, he manages to release Kazaam, a genie who has been held captive for thousands of years. In order to stay free, Kazaam must give Max three wishes.

This is un-fucking-believable. I'm watching a terrible movie with Shaquille O'Neal that is a decade old and possibly the worst piece of shit I've ever seen, and I'm paying for this? HBO really needs to look at the big picture here. Why go to the effort of investing in all of these great original series just to subsequently shit on top of it all by playing tripe like Kazaam? Please HBO, stop the madness.


At 3:07 PM, Anonymous -Paul said...

yes! yes! yes! HBO stop the madness!!

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