Monday, January 6, 2014

Loose Shoes

Sometimes the problem with projects like reviewing every film a person is in is that some films aren't entirely reviewable. I find myself in that space right now with Loose Shoes, also re-titled as Coming Attractions and Quackers, because I guess if your movie doesn't have much value you might as well give it three titles.

You'll see most descriptions saying the film is a series of shorts presented as trailers, but that's not entirely accurate. While the first few shorts do resemble trailers, many of them become too long and show too much story to truly be considered a preview for a film, and there's also an intermission with a kind of commercial and a musical performance at the end. As such, it's largely a cluttered mess of various sequences pushed together. A skit show stretched out to 70 minutes.

The jokes are immensely flimsy. "The Howard Huge Story" is a trailer for a bio pic of Howard Hughes, except he has a large penis. "Skateborders from Hell" (that's how they spell it) is basically a biker gang on skateboards. "Invasion of the Penis Snatchers" shows us a UFO, then cuts to a man going to use the bathroom and reaching and searching in his pants for what feels like eternity before finally screaming in horror because his member is gone.

The one trailer I found mildly funny was called "The Shaggy CEO" where Walt Whizney dies but comes back as a large shaggy dog (a man in a suit) and has to convince his brother Roy that he's really him. It's not much of a joke, but I thought it played on the hoax of Walt Disney freezing himself to come back to life combined with the proliferation of Shaggy Dog sequels the Disney company made well enough. Or maybe it was just the first one that wasn't in as poor taste as the others that I didn't mind it.

Bill Murray appears in a short titled "Three Chairs for Lefty" that while framed like a trailer really goes on far too long to be one. He's a man on death row for killing a judge, who studies law while he's on the toilet, starts a riot in the mess hall because he doesn't like the food, talks to a guy who tells him they found a tunnel out of the place but doesn't tell him where the tunnel is, then gets laughed at by the warden who tells him he appreciates the food Lefty made for him but he's still going to the electric chair. And would he mind holding a roast while he's sitting there so his wife can fix it up for dinner later? Murray also seems to be wearing blush and mascara for the short, though that may be a mix of a poor makeup crew and poor lighting on the set. As you can probably tell, it's not very funny and Murray doesn't really bring much of anything to the role.

Buddy Hackett appears as himself as a spokesman for S.T.O.P.I.T. during the intermission. The organization is there to help kids stop wetting the bed. They have a reproduction of the Manneken Pis on their grounds, but the water in the fountain is yellow. The nurses yell at the boys and tell them how bad they are, while Hackett asks for donations.

Howard Hesseman is in another short as a war correspondent, and this is where I have to be totally honest and admit I dozed off for a little bit. I don't remember what the joke was supposed to be here, but given how poor the other jokes were in the film I didn't really find myself wanting to rewind and find out. I apparently also missed some porn parody trailers. There were plenty of topless women in the early trailers, so I'm not surprised they included that too.

The movie ends with "Darktown After Dark." David Downing portrays a Cab Calloway type singing "Loose Shoes." The title of the song and its refrain are taken from a statement by racist politician Earl Butz. I won't quote it here because it's offensive and NSFW, but you can read it on the Wikipedia page for the film. The song runs with the quote, introducing other likes like "I don't need a watermelon patch." I understand the purpose of something like this, but I'm not sure the perfomance had to go on as long as it did. The other really awful thing about it is that thanks to the repetition, it's easy for the phrase to get stuck in your head. Given how awful it is, I'm not really crazy about that. In fact I'm really anxious to put this whole thing behind me so I never have it pop up in my head ever again.

Obviously, I do not recommend you finding this movie. There's nothing here all that funny, the shorts don't really tie together, and it's a waste of some perfectly good actors. Fortunately for me, Murray's film career improves quite a bit from here.

1 comment:

  1. Gah! This doesn't even sound like something I'D have the interest in tracking down, which means it MUST be bad. ;)


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