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The 7 - Guest Columns - Guest Shot: Wrestling News Central for Saturday 27th March, 2004 (for the Guest Editorial Section)
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#1 Posted on 27.3.04 2051.45
Reposted on: 27.3.11 2055.55
I've been asked by leggo to try his column from powerwrestling.com here for a while for feedback. Let me know if this is something that you'd like to see posted here. His submission is below.




Wrestling News Central for Saturday 20th March, 2004





Real Name: Gerard Leggett


Age: 17


From: Dublin, Ireland


Nickname: Leggo


Favourite Wrestler (this week): BOOKA T SUCKA


Song for the Moment: ĎMad Worldí by Michael Andrews


PW Writer Since: December 2002


E-mail: Leggo@powerwrestling.com





Welcome to Powerwrestling News Central, slowly becoming the IWCís most publicized news report as we are now being broadcast in Weinerboard. I got a lot to get to today so please excuse me if I donít bore you with a contrived intro.





HAS VINCE GONE MAD?





Okay those of you who read the Thank you Vince edition of L2C recently will know of my support of VKM not giving into smarks and playing all of his trump hands at once, instead keeping them for special occasions and thus making them all the more sweet. You can probably imagine my horror then after hearing that this week Vince has not only caved once, but twice, to the demands of the net. It seems as if this ĎBeginning Againí phase has knocked all morsels of brainpower from the noggin of the WWE Chairman, with him apparently admitting that we were right all along.



We wanted Eddie and Benoit as main eventers, we got them as frickení World Champions. Many cried ĎJews Out!í at the prospect of Goldberg being re-signed to a contract, but with Mel Gibson exposing the anti-Semites, said criers have calmed and now Vince is looking to back the current popular consensus that Goldberg was in fact good for business. This week, insane rumours became reality with the announcement of WWE 24-7 and the ever seemingly inevitable return of ECW after Paul Heymanís walkout on RAW.



Holy crap I hope this isnít a mistake.



The thing with risks like this is that fans never honestly saw them coming to fruition. They were always the pipe dreams of wrestling fans, holding a place in wrestling nirvana with the likes of Angle/Hart and a WCW invasion done to full effect, i.e. never gonna happen. Vince is playing with serious fire here, and chances are heíll get burned. Every wrestling fan and Buff Bagwellís mother has a perfect view of how ECW should return and a personal programming schedule for a 24-hour WWE television channel. It isnít possible for Vince to appease everyone and yours truly feels both will come off with lacklustre at best reviews from the ever-callous Internet.



Weíve seen it in the past, the real talking points in WWE history have been things no one has expected. Think Hulkamania. Think the Montreal Screwjob. Think DX invading WCW. Think Stunning Steve Austin as WWE franchise player. No one asked for them, but Vince had a vision that only he knew how to employ to maximum effect. Fans were only too willing to oblige and went on a rollercoaster ride, emerging with a smile afterwards. We humans for some reason were built with a natural love for the unexpected.



On the other hand, think back to that movie your friend went on and on and on about, but when you saw it, it wasnít that great. Youíd already experienced the peaks and troughs of the damn thing through your friends incessant explanations, so when you saw it it was nothing more than bleh at best. Vince tried to play with the fans ideals once before and guess where that led him? Can you say Wrestlecrap Gooker Award winner 2001.



At WrestleMania XX, VKM convinced me that all he had been denying us for the past 2-3 years was all part of a grand plan to make us appreciate getting what we want all the more. One couldíve seen Benoit and Guerreroís as an easy way to admit defeat to the net fans, I took it a different way. Now Iím not so sureÖ



(Vince McMahon sits in his office alone, Paul Heyman walks in)


Heyman: Yo Vince, Iím really excited about you bringing back EEEE-CCCC-WWWW! Yíknow, you and I have had our differences in the past but I believe that this is one thing we can agree on finally.


Vince: Yeah, uh, Paul, about thatÖ


Heyman: Who wouldíve thought it thought that after the company went under in 2001 that..


Vince (interrupts): Paul, please have a seatÖ


Heyman: Oh sure Mr. McMahon. What is it?


Vince: Yeah, teensy little problem about the whole ECW thing. See, when you (does quotation marks sign with hands) Ďquití on Monday night, turns out our lawyers have found a clause in your contract to state that that was legitimately resigning from the company.


Heyman: Wh..What? Surely Mr. McMahon thatís not legal, I meanÖbutÖ


Vince: Oh Paul, you havenít met my lawyers. Itís 100 per cent legal. I wouldíve fired you, but now Donald Trump has gone and made anyone who says ĎYouíre firedí pay royalties and we just canít afford those sort of expenses.


Heyman: ButÖECWÖ


Vince: Yeah, good times. Itís been great working with ya Paul now if you can justÖ(motions towards the door).


Heyman: EhÖMr. McMahon maybe we can make some sort of a comprÖ


Vince: Bye now Paul. (Heyman leaves room) Heheheh, Heyman screws Heyman. Still got it.




SMACKED OUT



So this week weíre going to make Smacked Out even more IWC clichťd by including for the first-time ever, STAR RATINGS for matches. The ratings will be pretty much based on everything in the match. Workrate. Storyline progression. Match enjoyment. Highspots. Letís do this.



- As I make sense of my live note from SmackDown, Iím sitting down to watch RAW, and the video package that highlighted the brand lotto makes me pretty psyched for the show. As for SmackDown, it does nothing for me as spoilers have told me the entire story already.



- Triple Hís music blare whatever Michigan arena weíre airing in tonight, but it is Kurt Angle who answers the call clad uncharacteristically in a suit. Angle announces the naming of a new General Manager tonight, with Tazz ruling out Stephanie McMahon immediately by speculating itís her. Why Tazz? Wasnít she a mortal enemy of Vince McMahon when she was last seen on WWE television? Not everyone reads the net remember. Kurt beats around the bush so much that anyone who hasnít read spoilers has still figured out itís him. Surprise, surprise. Whoda thunk it? Letís flash back to this very column last week:



Kurt just quit. Youíve given us the best youíve got, but now its time to look for something else to do. Manage the Worldís Greatest Tag-Team, commentate, hell, become the new Smackdown! General Manager when Heyman gets the sack, leave wrestling altogether and become an actor.



Oh why, why that was ME! Anyhoo enough gloating. Angleís not intending to take any ish from his superstars. In fact, tonight Triple H walked into his office and demanded a rematch with Eddie Guerrero just today. Angle not only refused, but traded Trips all the way back to RAW. In his place comes the Dudley Boyz and who Angle believes will become SmackDownís most dominant superstar in a matter of time, Booker-T, who has something to say dressed in La Parkaís old top. Heís not happy to be here. He doesnít like the unappreciative SmackDown fans, who idiotically cheer him on that and heís better than every superstar in that locker room, be it Guerrero, Cena, Big Show or even Undertaker. The fans finally caught on and booed Booker and he left.



~ Break ~



- Highlights from the WrestleMania Revenge tour aired. Unsurprisingly, the fan who called meeting Rikishi and Scotty 2 Hotty amazing opted not to have his face show. Eddie came off as a pervert talking of all the Mamacitas in Newcastle. REALLY?! Cena tried to make a kilt go ghetto, but then remembered that he was white and not Eminem. Sorry John.



Rob Van Dam defeated Charlie Haas via pinfall at 06:19 (**1/2)


Before the match, RVD gave us a terrible pre-recorded interview, dubbing himself Mr. Thursday Night and discussing how stoked he was to be on SmackDown. Why even bother? The fans were hot for RVD tonight sparking thoughts that maybe this might just kick-off his careerís renaissance. Haas and RVD showed great chemistry here. A money feud on the cards? Haas provided all the psychology Rob needed to run his spots around. At one point, Van Dam caught his foot in the ropes allowing Haas to stomp him some. If that was Triple H, his quad would be non-existent right now. RVD got the win after rolling up Haas, who was more concerned with exposing the turnbuckle.



Renee Dupree defeated Billy Kidman via pinfall at 03:34 (*1/2)


ĎThe French Phenomí looked a star here, exuding confidence from his entrance to the finish. Of course, Fifi accompanied him to the ring, although unfortunately she wouldnít factor in any of the match. Short match with the sole intention of getting Dupree over, as he cut-off a Shooting Star and hit a Michinoku Driver for the three. Afterwards, John Cena (who coincidentally was rapping on RAW at this EXACT moment. This stuff is happening WAY too often this week). Cena actually made me laugh with his line, ďWelcome to SmackDown/This is where the franchise players play/Thatís Tazz. Heís a thug/Thereís Michael Cole. Heís gay.Ē I laughed. Unfortunately it went downhill from there with Dr. Thug pointing out that Eddie steals and, being that Show and Rikishi are fat, they of course smell. He tells Dupree to choke on a bag of nuts. How can he be improvising if he brings props to the ring? Its not freestyle if its written John sorry.



~ Break ~



- Cole and Tazz subtly informed us that Taker wouldnít be here by rejoicing the fact that he was still on SmackDown.





- Teddy Long offered his services to Rikishi and Scotty 2 Hotty, saying he was looking to make a good tag-team great.



- Eddie Guerrero mingled in the locker room, welcoming RVD and Spike Dudley to the show. Booker-T was far less receptive to him however, calling him a minor league champ. Cue massive brawl that was intercepted by the other wrestlers.



- Whatís with WWE ignoring the Irish tour in the Tour of Defiance ads?



Dudley Boyz defeated Basham Brothers via pinfall at 06:02 (*)


SmackDown looks to be building up quite the tag-team division. Its nowhere near the heights of everywhere circa the late 80s/early 90s, nor WWEís last respected division in 2000, but with three, possibly four established teams in these two, Rikishi & Scotty and possibly OíHaire & Jindrak before WWE start to formulate new teams, Iím slightly optimistic here. The match served the same purpose as its three predecessors tonight, to push the new stars. It was an easy watch but nothing groundbreaking. The Dudleyz got the win with a 3D.



- Booker-T asked Angle what he was going to do about what happened in a nice, new-look GM office. He hates SmackDown already. Angle promises him a title match.



- Josh hits us early-morning British and Irish viewers up with WWE Update. Does Josh have no pride in his work at all? If the most exciting part of my job this week was to interview Earl Hebner, Iíd try and make as much fun out of ANYTHING I did. Josh is apparently oblivious to the term Ďwork ethicí as he just runs through the motions weekly with his one adjective, Ďoff the hookí. He thanks UK fans for making the WrestleMania Revenge tour a success and signs off. Consider me updated.



~ Break ~



Chavo Guerrero defeated Spike Dudley via pinfall to retain the WWE Cruiserweight Championship at 04:23 (*1/2)


This match was lost potential. It started off excellently with Spike telling the story of him desperately trying to beat the odds with Bubba Ray and D-Von egging him on at ringside, while Chavo Sr. freaked out at their presence. In an instant however, it was over and Spike had jobbed to a Cross Backbreaker. Welcome to SmackDown Spike, different show, same result.



~ Break ~



- Cole and Tazz discussed tonightís man event before scolding Bradshaw for his Ďreprehensibleí actions last week, turning on his prtner Farooq. What the hell? If anyone seems like theyíd sell everything out to keep their job, itís Cole. After the aired footage from last weekís events, music that just SCREAMS financial analyst blared the arena and out came Michael Wall Streetís long lost cousin, John ĎBradshawí Layfield. Bradshaw gave us a promo talking about how he has excelled in everything heís done in life, with the exception of pro-wrestling, because he wasted too much time drinking beer and having fun with Farooq. Well now, business is picking up. Know what Vince, better not delete Ron Simmonsí number from your phone book. Just in case.



- Bob Holly confronts Booker-T backstage. Heís not wanted here, and thereís a whole bunch of superstars ready to take him out when Eddieís done with him. Deja-vu.

~ Break ~





Eddie Guerrero defeated Booker-T via disqualification to retain the WWE Championship at 11:50 (**3/4)


If WWE take this all the way to Judgment Day, itís going to be greatness. If the back-and-forth displayed here is anything to go by, Iím sold. The story was of Booker swatting away a flurry of fightbacks until Eddie managed to hit the Frog Splash. At this point, BRADSHAW interfered and laid out Eddie with a clothesline from hell. Eh, WTF?! A clothesline from hell triggered the sell-out chants as we fade to black.



My Two Cents: It seems as if WWE are booking their shows with more of an old school mentality since WrestleMania, with the undercard only serving as a building block to the main event. Itís a defined structure that theyíve been missing out on for so long, and makes the shows easier to watch from top-to-bottom, vital if they want to start bringing back the casual fans. Todayís story was centred around the imported superstars, with the main event title match being the crescendo.



It was a good show and managed to get across sufficiently the point that, despite the brand lotto not being EXACTLY what we were expecting (a series of trades as opposed to an entire re-draft) this is a new era and weíre lucky to be experiencing it. Iím expecting SmackDown to continue this run of momentum with over a month and a half to not only establish the brand, but to set up for the pay-per view. RAW has three weeks. Iím expecting a severe dip in RAWís form card as it attempts to squeeze everything in.



This Weekís Rating: 4.7


Last Weekís Rating: 4.1


Average Rating: 4.4




WILLIE THE WORKER Ė PART DEUX!



The Observer this week published an article allegedly penned by a WWE superstar taking pity on the situation of Rob Fenstein. Whether the article is legit or not is of no concern to myself, and besides I tend to steer away from speculating on that which Iíll probably never know, and youíre not going to hear this writer take a blind shot in the dark as to who the writer was, but the real story here lies in the fact that, letís just call him Willie, has openly sympathised with a man who has shown potential paedophile danger.



Sounds familiarÖ



Perhaps the most shocking development here is the fact that Willie makes some perfectly good points. Although he doesnít go into as much detail as I did above with his opinions, he has said what people need to start saying. I get but a few thousand hits per L2C (so Watson tells me), the Observer on the other hand is the Mecca of underground pro-wrestling, and here you have someone who probably the most trustworthy inside man in Meltzer has assured us is legit. Will it start to raise awareness that people in Fenstein should be helped rather than just banished from society? On a global scale, no, but the word has to start somewhere, and Iím glad Willie, whoever he may be, took the initiative to say what was on his mind, risking his career and reputation in doing so in the unlikely event that his identity is leaked.



In a move that just reeks of irony, TNA have been advising their employees to steer well clear of Ring of Honour in light of the recent Fenstein scandal. I say its ironic because wrestling fans everywhere have been advising their friends to steer well clear of TNA.



CHARLESí CORNER



Start At The Beginning



With the honor of having been given a chance at writing a spot here at the awesome Power Wrestling, I figured it would be best to let anyone who is interested enough to read this to know 'where I'm coming from'. That, to me, means letting you readers know how I got interested in wrestling.



Personally, I think I'm older than the average Internet wrestling fan. I'm in my mid-thirites, I'm willing to admit, and my first days of wrestling were just slightly before the big Hulk Hogan craze. I was in northern california at the time, which isn't known for it's indy territories. However, we still got a small 'indy like' show that I honestly remember little to no details of. It was shot in a bare arena, the fans sat on folding chairs, and it had all the trappings of a little 'throw together' promotion some of you may have seen if you're as old as I am. ; D



It caught my interest... somewhat. But didn't totally 'catch' me all together. That... happened with the Hulk Hogan craze, I fully admit. I'll even admit.... I had NO clue wrestling was 'arranged' at the time. Hey, we were all young and stupid once, right!? ::Chuckles:: I was young and stupid enough to think Hulk DID go through some sort of 'adrenaline surges', because those DO happen in 'real life'. And it's thereoritcally possibly someone could learn to 'control' it.



I did mention I was young and stupid, right? ; D



In any case, I fully admit to getting into the 'Hulkamania' craze. No, I didn't wear the red and yellow, but it was what got me into watching more full-time. The 'Hot Rod' Roddy Piper was an INCREDIBLY entertaining heel, I loved the 'Killer Bees', B-Brian Blair, and his partner whose name I forget. The Junkyard Dog, King Kong Bundy, The Iron Shiek and Nikolai Volkov. George the Animal Steele, and MACHO-MAN, Randy Savage! :NAP INTO A SLIMJIM!:: ; D. And then on to a couple of 'youngsters' named the Rockers who had a 'lad' named Shawn Michaels who went on to a few things of SOME minor 'note'. ; D



Those names and more, I remember well from when I first got into wrestling. Ahh, I even remember seeing them do a music video to 'Land of a Thousand Dances', I think the song is called, and the other first strays into true entertainment the then WWF took.



Memories.



To follow up 'Charlie's History of Wrestling', as it were, I then sort've lost interest around the Ted DiBiase days. Things, to me, weren't as entertaining then. I'd seen some of Sting and the 'Dingo Warrior' who went on to become the Ultimate Warrior. But at that time, other federations didn't catch my eye, much, and the WWF was quickly going the same way.



Cut to... late 1990's. In browsing through cable, I came across something called 'Monday Night Nitro'. Who're these people?



I'd always sort've kept up on wrestling in the intervening years, and had known vaguely about Diesel, Vader, and a few others. But these 'Nitro' people were TOTALLY new to me at the time. A new Four Horsemen? Chris Jericho? Eddie Guerrero? Those and others, totally 'new' faces to me. Yet SO very talented! The athleticism and entertainment with the 'stick work' from especially Chris Jericho at the time just amazed and amused me. I was 'caught' again. (And the Nitro Girls didn't hurt nuthin'. ; D)



With this re-interest in wrestling, I checked out the WWF again. To me, it was a bit 'too' edgy at the time, clearly going overboard in trying to 'beat' WCW. I'm sorry to say I missed some great moments because of that, I would've loved to have seen Mick Foley's first Heavyweight Title win. But no, at the time, I was totally pro WCW.



As time went on, however, this time around I became more 'net savvy' and got into the internet wrestling scene as well. Mainly from talking to a friend at first, though I would eventually follow on my own. I found some behind the facts info, and heard more about what WWF was doing. And then when the NWO just droned on FOREVER, I eventually came 'home' to the WWF.



I've been following ever since, again.



Somewhere in there, I found Power Wrestling.com. I've ALWAYS loved trivia, and it was 'Ask PW' that caught my eye most, I admit. Having a VERY bad memory, I can forget things I've learned. But PW was also clear, concise, and clearly well written and managed. To give an idea of when I 'came aboard' as a loyal follower, my first ever question to Ask PW was about Sara calling Undertaker 'Mark', and asking what his real name is. (Mark Calloway for any who may not know.) That'd put me into PW about the time of just before the 'Invasion' angle, for those of you who remember the date thereof. And I've been following PW nearly daily, ever since.



All in all, my love of wrestling is based on the entertainment these people offer, and the sheer amazement I have for their ability in the ring. Their athleticism and such. Some call it a 'male soap opera'. While that fits, I've also always had another dubbing of my own I use. To me... these are 'acting stunt-men'. The unsung hero's of the action movies, who do all the amazing stunts that make us go 'wow', while their great-teethed counterparts spit the lines out and get all the credits. (And money!) ::Chuckles:: And I admire greatly that SO many of these wrestlers who've gotten to the 'level' they have in the WWE don't shirk their status. MANY of them are well known for the things they do for the Make A Wish Foundation and other charities, and for that, I will always thank and respect them.



This is how it all started, how I 'left', and how I've come back full-circle. I'm a wrestling fan, even if I do occasionally complain about things that I see in the ring/on the screen. After all... I'm human. I have thoughts and opinions, and occasionally get that 'I wish *I* could tell them to do THIS', type feeling. But despite that, I realize this IS as much entertainment as a 'sport'... and love it because of both those reasons, not just one or the other. So though wrestling has it's peaks and valleys, right now, I for one am caught up in the craze again. Even if the ratings aren't the best, even if I'm not the wide-eyed young and stupid 'mark' I once was. But these people put on a show, and it's one I enjoy, and as long as I continue to do so... I'm back for the long haul.



'Awesome PW-Ite', and PW Fan Forever, and the 'PW Beast',



-Charles-


LATER! ; D


(Croc0Guy@aol.com)



BECAUSE THEREíS MORE TO LIFE THAN WRESTLING




George, George, George. From BBC.co.uk:



Bush's Iraq WMDs joke backfires



US President George W Bush has sparked a political row by making a joke about the failure to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.



At a black-tie dinner for journalists, Mr Bush narrated a slide show poking fun at himself and other members of his administration.



One pictured Mr Bush looking under a piece of furniture in the Oval Office, at which the president remarked: "Those weapons of mass destruction have got to be here somewhere."



After another one, showing him scouring the corner of a room, Mr Bush said: "No, no weapons over there," he said.



And as a third picture, this time showing him leaning over, appeared on the screen the president was heard to say: "Maybe under here?"



The audience at Wednesday's 60th annual dinner of the Radio and Television Correspondents' Association obviously thought the quips hilarious - there were laughs all round - but the next morning, in the cold light of day, things looked far less amusing.



The joke about the fruitless search for Iraqi WMDs so far, Washington's prime justification for the US-led invasion, has been branded as tasteless and ill-judged.



'Undermining' sacrifices



Mr Bush's election challenger Senator John Kerry described the president's attitude as "stunningly cavalier".



"If George Bush thinks his deceptive rationale for going to war is a laughing matter, then he's even more out of touch than we thought," he said in a written statement.



"Unfortunately for the president, this is not a joke."



Mr Kerry's statement also included a comment from Iraq war veteran Brad Owens, who said: "War is the single most serious event that a president or government can carry its people into.



"This cheapens the sacrifice that American soldiers and their families are dealing with every single day."



More than 500 US soldiers have died in the war and thousands more have been injured.



US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was asked what he thought of this incident at a press conference on Friday, but he dodged the issue, saying that he couldn't comment as he hadn't been at the event.




Sorry Bushy, but the rules are that everyone else but you can make fun of your failures. To do so yourself would be just tasteless. The worst part about all this is the extremes he had to go to to make people laugh. Why not just tap the mic and say ĎEh, is this thing on?í But no. Even in mocking himself, Ďol George seems to still end up being the punchline for other reasons.



Anyway, onto more serious businessÖ



No matter how much your parents try, or tried you when you were my age, to convince you that they are the best years of your life, letís face the facts that school is about as easy as pimpiní, i.e. itís not. Especially in the knowledge this week that my ideal college course, Media Arts, requires me to score 80% or higher in six of my eight exam subjects. For this reason, Friday nights usually come with a gigantic sigh of relief from the entire school. Most nights Iíd either be out getting pissed or in the cinema, but for reasons beyond my control, this Friday was different. Tonight, I would be forced to stay in, and was determined to make the most of it. I was gonna geek out.



Iím a guy who likes to excel in any field that Iím interested in at the earliest opportunity possible. I want to be a journalist and a writer, so my goal is to be one of the elite Internet wrestling writers at least by the time Iím going to college. I also want to be a filmmaker, so to set myself apart from the 5968 film students in the country who join with the sole intention of just watching movies to get a degree, Iíve decided that Iím going to at least try watch as many films I can before I attend college. I want to have a diligent knowledge of the world of film, with my own opinions on directors, actors, how I would make a film etc. laid out beforehand. Hell, I even know what my final year documentary in college is going to be based on.



For this reason, this Friday night I as going to ensure that I caught up with two required movies for film buffs that had somehow passed me by, with a third sandwhiched in between that was a must-see for any wannabe comedy writers. For prosperity, and to have something more than the above news article for this segment, I decided to give my brief thoughts on each.



The night began with the 1967 classic, The Dirty Dozen. Said dozen are a group of Death Row convicts thrown together to participate on a mission too dangerous for Ďrealí soldiers. The group are diverse and each have their own story to tell. Wielded into a team by Major John Reissman, we see the teamís progression from a bunch of wise-cracking, disrespectful delinquents into a closely knit unit comparable to any of the finest in the army ready for the culminating mission.



The selling point in this film, the thing that makes it more than just a regular 60ís movie (and believe me, the setting, the sound and just about everything else would tell you that it is made as one) is the characters. Reissman is a smooth-talking, likeable lead with a definite rebellious streak. He knows how to mould the dozen to meet his vision, and thus never goes easy on them, but you sense that he generally likes the group and wishes for them to succeed. The characters both look and play the part perfectly. Everything they need to be, be it rebellious, strong, witty or likeable, they do. Youíre happy when they succeed and ultimately care about the mission. Although the film is told in turbo mode, really you donít miss a beat as every scene right up until the resulting mission sequence, gives us a sufficient amount of character development but leaves enough room for the viewer to interpret the fruits of that development before the next scene comes on, and it benefits from it. The final sequence plays to all characters strengths and weaknesses and makes it feel like a wholesome two hours plus watch, as opposed to the Full Metal Jacket-type where the film is practically divided in two and very little is taken from the opening half. Itís hard to call it a cinematic classic after just one view, but itís a very likeable movie with a good replay value Iím sure, and one that you wonít regret watching.



Next up came the comic relief of the night. Monty Pythonís Meaning of Life. If youíve seen any Monty Python before (and what are you waiting for if you havenít?), then you know exactly what youíre getting. The film is essentially a hodgepodge of sketches all tied together by the title. It starts off hilariously and remains so until the fifth Ďmeaningí, that being Live Organ Transplants, which just kills the movie stone dead with a nonsensical and dragging song attempting to duplicate the classic ĎAlways Look on the Bright Side of Lifeí. Until then, you sense that the film has a purpose, with the first seven or eight sketches serving as excellent piss-takes on subjects like religion, the British school system, war, Americans, and the medical service among others. Line of the night, for me, came with the latter subject as a mother in labour tells the doctor, ďBut I donít know what to do,Ē and John Cleese tediously fires back at her in the same tone he would if playing the unforgettable Basil Fawlty, ďBut of course you donít dear, youíre not QUALIFIED.Ē



As with such classics from the crew as their first two films, them being The Life of Brian (which is tentatively scheduled for re-release in Britain around April) and The Holy Grail, you will find yourself sniggering at things that really you canít explain why, and roaring with laughter at the well-timed joke, at least for the first half of the film. The second half degenerates unfortunately into a load of drivel barely worthy of raising a smile to, with an all too predictable fat man joke and a seemingly never-ending conclusion as we reach the death section. There are a couple of glimpses of the Monty Python of old in the latter stages, and some things will make you laugh, but as the Meaning of Life draws to a close, you are glad. Iíd recommend this to any fan of Monty Python, or to any person that hasnít checked out their work before to see if you get it, but trust me when I say go with your gut and change the channel once you feel compelled to.



Finally, we reach the main event of our night. The 1971 Michael Caine classic Get Carter. Get Carter is told in perfect storytelling, as weíre not bogged down by irrelevant character histories, but instead intrude upon the life of an interesting enough fellow in Jack Carter. Carterís story is never told, only hinted at, but basically you will formulate your opinion of him through his actions in the timeframe of this movie. Heís a hard guy to like, as for every joke he pulls or every baddie he evades, Carter will slap a woman or do something equally nauseating. There are no real baddies, or goodies to speak of here, but everything is told in a shade of grey. You feel like youíre watching something you have no business to and as the rather disturbing plot unfolds, you feel more and more uncomfortable, but just try and change the channel.



The beauty of this movie comes twofold, that being the excellent Michael Caine and the direction, credit for which goes to Mike Hodges. There is no notable soundtrack here and all is very low-key. The only sound that reminds us that this isnít just a walk in the park movie is the hard cockney accent of Caine himself. Music is very rarely used, and it has a purpose when it does, as Caineís voice is the primary setting of the filmís atmosphere. The camerawork is also well ahead of its time. For those of you whoíve seen such British films of the same ilk like Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch, youíll find yourself feeling very drawn towards this filmís layout. The camerawork is the reason for this as Hodges makes it seem as if weíre spying on Carter in this pivotal time in his life. You can imagine someone following him around with a hidden camera and recording this. The most striking image of camerawork is incredibly basic. As Carter is being pursued by his enemies, he is saved by a mystery car. We get a GTA 1 and 2 like overview of the events. I donít know why, but that is the image Iíll take from the film aside from the horrifying pictures that not even amnesia would be able to wipe from my brain depicted later.



I wonít spoil it for you, but be warned that youíll need a strong stomach to watch this one. Itís undoubtedly a classic, but most definitely not for everyone. Itís a heavy watch but, if you can take it, most definitely a worthwhile one.



Aiiite, Iím out.



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#2 Posted on 27.3.04 2118.00
Reposted on: 27.3.11 2122.01
He misspelled the name of the board.
Excalibur05
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#3 Posted on 28.3.04 0124.02
Reposted on: 28.3.11 0129.01
None of the links work. Does Guru have the sites or did it come in broken?
leggo
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#4 Posted on 28.3.04 0645.43
Reposted on: 28.3.11 0646.10
Sorry about that. Microsoft Word fucks them up. There's two links messed up, here's the first one.

Thank You Vince

The other one's the Observer editorial where the WWE wrestler gives his thoughts on the Fenstein situation. You can find it on the Observer website under Headlines, sorry but I'm not bothered looking it up.

Sorry bout the misspelling BTW. The message is still there though.

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#5 Posted on 28.3.04 1233.46
Reposted on: 28.3.11 1234.07
Just a small request... maybe up the size of the font a teeny bit? It's eyestrain city for me trying to read it as it is right now.
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#6 Posted on 28.3.04 1852.27
Reposted on: 28.3.11 1853.29
I think that's mostly my fault with the font as well. I tried to fix the links - they came in all jacked up and I tried to salvage what I could, but the reposting stuff from a PM route is really messy.

Any feedback other than the stuff I did wrong?
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#7 Posted on 30.3.04 1753.41
Reposted on: 30.3.11 1756.10
    Originally posted by Nate The Snake
    Just a small request... maybe up the size of the font a teeny bit? It's eyestrain city for me trying to read it as it is right now.


Try View/Text Size/Larger, it worked well for me.

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#8 Posted on 30.3.04 1944.27
Reposted on: 30.3.11 1944.40
Good read. I glossed over the movie reviews, though. I liked the backstory in how you ended up where you are now as a fan.

The other Killer Bee? Jumpin' Jim Brunzell -- my late grandpa loved him and Greg Gagne as the High Flyers way back in the AWA. He even had an autographed photo of the two that my older brother got for him.
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