Circumstantial flummery from a would-be spoonbean hustler.

Maybe it works with brain-damage…

I’ve never thought of myself as hard to please. Discerning, sure, but there are plenty of films, books and television that I enjoy without congealing into brilliant mind-bending plots with deep, dynamic characters. So I thought that the mindless action that Die Hard 4 and Transformers promised would be right up my alley.

And as much as I was looking forward to them both I just ended up bored and annoyed. What’s bothering me is that more than a few people seem to be able to enjoy these and I just don’t get it. I swear I’m not hard to please! I may hype myself up a little too often, but dammit I like mindless action! Here’s a list for you:

Independence Day
Con Air
The Long Kiss Goodnight
Passenger 57
Under Siege
Deep Blue Sea
The Postman
Point Break
3000 Miles to Graceland
Tango & Cash
Lethal Weapon 4
League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
51st State
Blown Away

I consider these to be fairly typical mindless action flicks where plot, continuity and development end up sacrificed for spectacle- everything I expect from MAFs. I like all of these films, own about half of them and can quote cliché dialogue at length from more of them than I should admit. In the canon of MAFs these aren’t even the all-stars but I specifically picked these because they all score between a 5.0-6.5 user rating on the Internet Movie Database, with one exception. One scores a 7.1- Any guesses? It actually sort of surprised me. But pretend IMDB isn’t horribly skewed and say 5.0s are pretty average. SHOULDN’T I find more than a chuckle or two in Live Free or Die Hard – an 8.2!!!! Or Transformers – an 8.4?!

What the ever-loving-fuck?! Part of me insists that I embrace the popcorn flick as much as anyone else. I SHOULD be able to enjoy them. But I see a distinct void between these movies and Transformers (Die Hard 4 to a lesser extent) and I’m annoyed about it. Transformers was damn near incoherent. Just not fair.