Author Topic: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds  (Read 16755 times)

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Offline M.gunnerQuist

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Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« on: October 03, 2006, 08:23:11 AM »
Mike, thank you for bringing us Rifftrax. It's a brilliant way to continue the MST3K tradition of riffing away at movies that deserve it. Although I might disagree as to whether some movies really deserve a good riffing, watching any movie get riffed is a lot of fun. I really love The Fifth Element, for example. But it didn't bother me that you skewered that one. There was plenty of ridiculous crap in that film. On the other hand, thanks to you, I never would have endured Crossroads. And, again thanks to you, I actually got around to seeing Roadhouse all the way through instead of channel surfing away from it. Yes, I have learned the wisdom of "my way or the highway."

There is one director who is in dire need of riffing. That man is Uwe Boll. After much online debate all over the internet, most critics have come to the conclusion that he is, in fact, the modern day Ed Wood. For the uninitiated, some explaination is in order.

In the beginning there was Edward D. Wood Jr. For an understanding of this man and his Hero's Journey, rent the movie, Ed Wood (1994), directed by Tim Burton. To quote the all-knowing Wikipedia, "In the 1950s, Wood made a run of independently produced, extremely low-budget horror, science fiction and cowboy films, now celebrated for their technical errors, unsophisticated special effects, idiosyncratic dialogue, eccentric casts and outlandish plot elements. Wood is commonly regarded as one of the worst filmmakers of all time." A few of Wood's movies made an appearance on Mystery Science Theater 3000. Some have wondered why his craptacular masterpiece, Plan 9 From Outer Space, was not presented on MST3K. But that is the subject of another debate on another forum.

What must be understood about Ed Wood is that he enjoyed making movies. He believed in them. It's what he wanted to do. And, by God, no amount of bad film reviews was going to keep him from the artform that he loved. He was truly an inspiration to everyone. The lesson he gives us all is that if you love what you do, keep doing it no matter what.

And that brings us to German film director, Uwe Boll. (His name is pronounced, "ooh-vay ball.") Unlike Ed Wood, Boll has been able to make a significant amount of money off of his craft. Unlike Wood, Boll is good with his money. Perhaps he would make a better producer than a director. But we may never know because he insists upon directing more films. In Germany, during the 1990s, he had done a few TV commercials and some movies. In the United States, not much is known about his earlier work because it was made for German audiences. And if you do get a copy of German Fried Movie (1991), there's the issue of it all being in German.

The American public's first exposure to Uwe Boll was in 2003 with the wide release of House of the Dead. Since it was an adaptation of a video game, it was not expected to receive high critical acclaim. To the astonishment of any who witnessed this film's projection onto a silver screen, it turned out to be the nadir of video game movies. Not only did it have almost nothing to do with the game, it featured Clint Howard. Yes, that Clint Howard. The movie was laughably bad. I'll leave discussion of the film's many faults to discussion in this thread.

Extreme mental anguish was unleashed upon an unsuspecting audience when Uwe Boll made Alone in the Dark (2005). Christian Slater collected a paycheck in this movie. And Tara Reid tried to pretend she was a "scientist" but failed miserably. Luckily, this movie did not feature Clint Howard. But it was small consolation. This was yet another video game adaptation. And yet again, it had almost nothing to do with the game itself.

After Boll released this second American movie, people on the English-speaking internet noticed Dr. Uwe Boll. (He really does have a doctorate. In sucktology, I believe.) Many started to wonder who or what this Boll creature was really all about. Was he a pseudonym like Alan Smithee? Many believed that his movies were a financial scam that were designed to fail in order to exploit a loophole in German tax law. Yes, I am not kidding. All humor aside, there really was an exploited loophole in German tax law that allowed film investors to use failed projects as a tax shelter. More information about Boll came to light. For starters, he's an independant filmmaker so you can't really blame Hollywood for the existence of his movies. He actually attended film school for a month or two. And to everyone's astonishment, it turned out that this guy is for real. He really does believe in the work that he's doing. He really does think that his films are worth a damn. He really does think he is a cinematic revolutionary.

My experience with Uwe Boll films has been magical. No, really! Having been a fan of Mystery Science Theater 3000 since about 1993, I have come to appreciate bad cheesey movies. MST3K, in it's own twisted way, taught me quite a bit about what works and what doesn't work in movies. In the last ten years, I've done my studies of cinema, it's terms, and it's concepts. In recent years, I've frequented internet forums and discussed my favorite movies. When I heard the bitter complaints about the works of Dr. Boll, I was rather dismissive. All too often I would hear some young twerp bitterly complain that such-and-such new movie that had been released was "the worst movie ever." To that I would point out Manos: The Hands of Fate. But with House of the Dead and Alone in the Dark, many people were insistent that Uwe Boll demonstrated an unparalleled lack of directing skill. I took this with a grain of salt. Sure, there are plenty of mediocre movies that come out. But for the most part, the average quality of films has increased since the hoary days of Manos. For instance, I thoroghly enjoyed Aeon Flux and Tank Girl not because they were masterpieces but because they appealed to me for personal reasons. Chicks with guns is always a-okay in my book. But, to my delighted horror, I found that even chicks with guns could not save a Uwe Boll film.

With a truly open mind, I went to go see BloodRayne (2006), Uwe Boll's third video game adaptation, in the theater. Here is my review:

Quote
Oh my God, what a craptacular shitstorm

MOOD: Ill
CURRENT RATINGS:
ROTTEN: 2/10  2/10    Movie:    BloodRayne (2006)


Words escape me. I will try my best.

I gave it one point for having actors that I like. And I gave it another point for Kristanna Loken getting naked. That's it. The rest of the movie was atrocious.

Every single cheesey monster movie produced for the SciFi Channel looks like Masterpiece Theater in comparison.

I've read on the internet for quite some time that Uwe Boll is a terrible film director. So I went to see his newest movie, Bloodrayne, to see what people were talking about. Oh my God. They were not kidding. Critics haven't been jumping on a bandwagon. It's all true. This guy has no appreciable directing talent. None. I've also heard that Boll cannot speak english very well. That becomes really apparent through the poor use of the actors. Boll obviously doesn't understand a poor delivery of a line.

Not only did Boll direct this movie, he was also the producer. That means he was responsible for selecting his crew. One of the first things I noticed about Bloodrayne was the poor sound engineering. I could barely hear what many of the actors were saying over the overblown music soundtrack. And speaking of music, much of it was used inappropriately.

The editing was confusing. I was really, really trying to give this movie a chance. I tried my best to pay attention. But by half way through the movie, I realized that I had no idea what was going on at all. And I found I didn't care in the slightest. I always had tremendous difficulty connecting what happened in one scene with what happened in the next. A proper movie tells a story. Through sound and movement, it conveys information. Be it a rom-com or a doc, it flows at a pace that conveys a message to the audience. This movie completely failed in this respect.

The decent selection of actors was no help in the face of crappy direction. No matter how good of an actor you are, it's just not going to help a supremely terrible movie like this one. Michael Madsen did the best with what he was given. I have no idea why Ben Kingsly was in this film. It's a complete mystery to me. I like Michelle Rodriguez but will I ever see her smile? Her work on Lost does a much better job of showcasing her abilities. Billy Zane's role in this movie was also kept an air-tight secret by director Boll. I knew I was in trouble when I saw "special appearance by Billy Zane" in the opening credits. Meat Loaf, on the other hand, was downright hilarious. And Loken. Poor, poor Kristanna Loken. I feel so doggone sorry for her. I think she has promise. But this movie doesn't help her career at all. This is the worst movie in the careers of all actors involved.


Look at this publicity shot. Yes, that's Loken's stunt double standing in the background of a scene that, in the movie, only includes Rodriguez and Loken. And they're using wooden swords spray-painted silver.

My God. I still can't get over it. The single best thing I got out of this movie was endless laughter that escaped me when the credits started to roll. Me and my friend were sitting there, laughing our asses off until the theater was empty. I had tears in my eyes I was laughing so hard.

Something must be understood about my movie criticism in general. I tend to be merciful and leanient. I even thought Catwoman had some redeeming qualities that I genuinely enjoyed. And I thought the vast majority of critics of Aeon Flux were wrong. But Bloodrayne? It just plain sucked in so many ways that it deserves no defence.

I am eagerly awaiting the sequel. It's supposed to take place in the wild west. No, I am not kidding.

2/10

There is no doubt in my mind that Dr. Uwe Boll is the modern-day incarnation of Ed Wood. None. I'm absolutely certain. He is the worst modern director still in business. And yes, he plans to release more video game adaptation movies. Praise the Lord.

When I found out that Mike Nelson was doing Rifftrax, Uwe Boll instantly came to mind. It's been a half dozen or so Rifftrax and still no sign of Dr. Boll. Perhaps the Boll films will be an "ace in the hole" like Ed Wood was for MST3K. I believe that it's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when Mike will get around to riffing a Uwe Boll film.

I vote for Alone in the Dark as the first Uwe Boll Rifftrax. Although it's the second of Boll's video game adaptations, it's clearly the most mindnumbingly awful. Then dive into the hilarity of House of the Dead. And once all the Rifftrax fans have been tenderized enough, marinate them with BloodRayne. It's delicious! At least do one Uwe Boll movie before his next masterpiece, In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Seige Tale, is released soon.

In this thread, I encourage people to discuss all things Boll.
See "Bionic Showdown in Canada", winner of the RiffTrax Remix 2011 Contest: http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=091C929FE6C9BA81


Offline Conor

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2006, 08:37:47 AM »
Wow.  See, that's the way to make your case for a movie.  Much more effective than "OMG TROLL 2 !!11!!!1"

You've convinced me that a Uwe Boll movie must be viewed in the near future.  I will report back with my thoughts.


Offline gammer

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2006, 09:00:36 AM »
You know...
 
If I was Uwe Boll, I might post somthing like this to get my movies riffed which will lead in increased DVD sales.
You did mention he was smart with money...right?

 ;)
« Last Edit: October 03, 2006, 09:07:48 AM by gammer73 »


Offline Tarantulas

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2006, 09:10:07 AM »
Flamegrape: AWESOME post...  great job. also, Tr011 2 ru113s! ;)

You guys should be carefull, Uwe might challenge you to a boxing match.

Uwe Boll vs SomethingAwful.com's "Lowtax" :
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/J1ajzcGsLaA" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/J1ajzcGsLaA</a>

I think the saddest part of the Uwe Boll story is the fact that the German taxpayer are the real losers.

From "Alone in the Dark" DVD commentary, pasted from Wiki:

"Maybe you know it but it's not so easy to finance movies in total. And the reason I am able to do these kind of movies is I have a tax shelter fund in Germany, and if you invest in a movie in Germany you get basically fifty percent back from the Government."

Boll is able to acquire funding thanks to German tax laws that reward investments in film. The law allows investors in German-owned films to write off 100% of their investment as a tax deduction; it also allows them to invest borrowed money and write off any fees associated with the loan. The investor is then only required to pay taxes on the profits made by the movie; if the movie loses money, the investor gets a tax writeoff.

While Boll has received a lot of negative publicity regarding this funding method, he was actually one of the few directors to use the tax shelter as intended. His films were financed, produced, and directed by a German company, which was the initial intention behind the tax shelter: to provide incentive for investment in German entertainment properties. Regardless of the law's intention, most of these German film funds ended up funneling money to American studios to finance American blockbusters. The law merely required that the movie's copyright be owned by a German company; thus studios would "sell" a movie's rights to a German company, then immediately lease the movie back for a small fee, while the German owners would agree to very limited control. Essentially, the German company would own the movie on paper, but have no say over its production. Because of this, in January 2006, as had been expected for several months, the German legislature changed the country's tax laws to eliminate the tax shelter. It is not known if this will have any effect on Boll's funding as the new laws only seek to punish investors who are abusing the law for tax purposes; Boll's activities appear to be well within the legitimate usage of the tax shelter.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2006, 09:21:27 AM by Tarantulas »


Offline M.gunnerQuist

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2006, 09:47:10 AM »
In all seriousness, this German tax thingy is probably the main reason why so many sucky movies have flooded the theaters in recent years. However, I heard that German lawmakers recently got rid of this drain on their economy. But Dr. Boll remains in business.
See "Bionic Showdown in Canada", winner of the RiffTrax Remix 2011 Contest: http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=091C929FE6C9BA81


Offline jewishcarpenter

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2006, 10:41:26 AM »
He's still planning on doing Pac-Man: The Movie, right?


Offline Variety of Cells

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2006, 11:06:52 AM »
There are some video games that seem to be asking to be made into movies.  But even those have turned out to be mediocre at best.  But Dungeon Seige?  There isn't really a story in Dungeon Seige, or at least not a memorable one.  You might as well just make a medieval/fantasy movie.  I find it hard to believe that saying "based on the popular video game" will get you more money when there have been absolutely no good video game adaptations.   


Offline Pak-Man

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2006, 11:19:31 AM »
I have heard disturbing things about the Pac-Man movie, the most disturbing being summed up in 2 words: Live action...


Offline Skiptastic

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2006, 11:19:56 AM »
Wow.  See, that's the way to make your case for a movie.  Much more effective than "OMG TROLL 2 !!11!!!1"

And yet, when someone said "OMG TROLL 2", it got put up on the poll and is now running in third place. Yet, one man's humble suggestion of the worst Halloween series movie ever, Season of Witches, went ignored and disdained. :-

I'm going to have to try going to one of the extremes apparently. Or just speak through Tarantulas, assuring that everything I say gets attention and helping him reach 1k posts a few days earlier.  ;D
« Last Edit: October 03, 2006, 11:25:43 AM by Skiptastic »


Offline Tarantulas

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2006, 11:51:37 AM »
ZING!

Actualy I think all the Troll 2 votes are pitty votes... like voting for the kid with chronic entitilitus for prom king.


Offline David

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #10 on: October 03, 2006, 11:52:46 AM »
I'd be more impressed if Boll challenged his critics to a VIDEO GAME match...


Offline Pak-Man

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #11 on: October 03, 2006, 12:07:34 PM »
Uwe Boll promises to become a regular director in me and my wife's annual Memorial Day bad movie marathon. Bloodrayne hurts a LOT. My wife loves a good zombie film and she even likes the bad ones, so we owe it to ourselves to check out House of the Dead next Memorial Day. :^) We might just have to check out Dungeon Siege in theatres (But we'll have to be quick! Bloodrayne only showed in theatres for a week. ONE week! :^))


Offline M.gunnerQuist

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2006, 12:34:00 PM »
Wow.  See, that's the way to make your case for a movie.  Much more effective than "OMG TROLL 2 !!11!!!1"

And yet, when someone said "OMG TROLL 2", it got put up on the poll and is now running in third place. Yet, one man's humble suggestion of the worst Halloween series movie ever, Season of Witches, went ignored and disdained. :-

I'm going to have to try going to one of the extremes apparently. Or just speak through Tarantulas, assuring that everything I say gets attention and helping him reach 1k posts a few days earlier.  ;D
House of the Dead is conspicuously missing from that poll. My favorite exchange in that movie is, "Why do you want to be immortal?" "So I can live forever." Yes, the dialogue is that stupid in this movie.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2006, 12:35:40 PM by Flamegrape »
See "Bionic Showdown in Canada", winner of the RiffTrax Remix 2011 Contest: http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=091C929FE6C9BA81


Offline AvestheFox

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2006, 12:37:12 PM »
this thread made me chuckle

I support this all the way!


Offline Skiptastic

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Re: Uwe Boll must be riffed to shreds
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2006, 12:54:21 PM »
Wow.  See, that's the way to make your case for a movie.  Much more effective than "OMG TROLL 2 !!11!!!1"

And yet, when someone said "OMG TROLL 2", it got put up on the poll and is now running in third place. Yet, one man's humble suggestion of the worst Halloween series movie ever, Season of Witches, went ignored and disdained. :-

I'm going to have to try going to one of the extremes apparently. Or just speak through Tarantulas, assuring that everything I say gets attention and helping him reach 1k posts a few days earlier.  ;D
House of the Dead is conspicuously missing from that poll. My favorite exchange in that movie is, "Why do you want to be immortal?" "So I can live forever." Yes, the dialogue is that stupid in this movie.

Maybe Halloween III and House of the Dead are just too bad for Mr. Nelson. Maybe he's...chicken.