Flicks: Book series to come to life with helmet-wearing owls
Sly Stallone’s sham action flick “The Expendables” topped the box office take with $16.5 million. Sly, you sir are a liar and a fraud. Second place was another joke — “Vampires Suck.”
So, the shared shame is Hollywood knows it’s at the bottom of the summer barrel and we’re all just staggering toward what we hope will be an improved fall lineup.
There’s one movie in the next handful of weeks for which I’m excited, and another that is sure to give me nightmares.
The first is “Resident Evil: Afterlife.” What can I say? I love me some Mila Jovovich. I also have this thing for Capcom’s long-running, utterly confusing, slightly (accidentally? probably?) racist zombie adventure, despite my disdain for all things undead (thanks Stephanie Meyer).
Anyway, I’ve written enough about “RE:A.” Mrs. Flicks and I will be seated, come hell or 3-D, although what’s the difference?
On to real horror.
It’s called “Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole.” In other words, it’s a generic fantasy fiction adventure with talking birds from a made-up place.
The tagline is “On his way to finding a legend ... he will become one.”
First off, I don’t trust movie taglines that use ellipses ... you shouldn’t trust anyone who uses ellipses.
Second, the corollary to my no-child heroes rule is animal heroes, also, are unacceptable. As a fantasy ne—, er, afficionado, that’s a hard rule to stick by. But the ratio of ridiculous and wooly idiotic characters to those in which you can either invest interest or for which you’re willing to suspend your disbelief, is weighted heavily toward the former.
And so, we have Soren, an owl not unlike the plushy I had when I was 3. He has big, gooey eyes and downy feathers, perfect for the inside of a pillow or high-end mattress. But Soren won’t be the stuffing of anyone’s bed dressing. He has A DESTINY.
This movie is directed by Zach Snyder, who seems to have turned from awesome man porn (“300,” “Watchmen”) to doing PSAs for the Audubon Society.
Really Zach, a talking owl coming-of-age adventure tale?
“Guardians,” it shouldn’t surprise anyone, is based on a book series, written by Kathryn Lasky, who gets credit as a co-author of the screenplay. There are 15 books in the series. So, if this thing makes even a few dimes the producers can drunkenly rub together, expect fresh installments. One can only hope real owls are unleashed on the audience members to mercifully peck out their eyes. Do owls peck? Rake may be more appropriate. I’m not up on my avian battle tactics. Maybe “Guardians” will help with that.
The bottom line is this. These owls wear helmets. Helmets.