Sunday, May 5, 2013

Is bigger EVER better?

Is bigger EVER better?

Is there anything in life that’s better when it’s exposed, celebrated, increased, or commercialized? I was wondering this as I watched SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE, hosted by formerly-funny manchild, Zach Galifianakis. The episode was unwatchable. There wasn’t a second of genuine, original funny taking place. The cast did what they could as Zach G delivered another round of the same weird routine recycled for the ten thousandth time. HANGOVER co-stars Bradley Cooper and Ed Helms made cameos as Jennifer Aniston lookalikes. Trifecta unfunny.

Commercial breaks meant HANGOVER 3 previews. I think this edition has the possibility of being the worst movie of the year. HANGOVER 2 stunk (still WAY better than BRIDES MAIDS), but this third installment is going to hit a whole new rock bottom. And this is coming from a guy who calls the original HANGOVER the greatest comedy ever made, one of the greatest—of any genre—ever.

The HANGOVER trailers look awful. Why? Nothing stays good stretched out this far. This movie has about as much of a chance as LITTLE FOCKERS. There was a time when this group of Vegas-going guys was the most original thing in H'wood. But that was 500 million dollars ago, and three celebrity girlfriends on Bradley Cooper’s arm ago, and a few seasons of THE OFFICE with Ed Helms at the helm ago. Translation: That movie made these guys stars, but we’ve seen the routine. I get it, HANGOVER 3 will make its 200 million, and you can’t argue math, but the quality has been replaced by the quantity. Say what you want about Jim Carrey. He took one look at the DUMB & DUMBER sequel script last year, said no thanks, left twenty mil on the table. Why?

I was thinking this same thing some more as we joined friends for lunch at a sandwich shop in Halfmoon. We’ve lived in CP for five years, and have sworn by this little place. No Saturday was complete without a sandwich run. It was a hole in the wall, with hardly any dining-in accommodations, but the portions were absurd and the prices were more than reasonable. Was it cheap? No. You want cheap, go to Mickey D’s. It was great food at a fair price. They knew your name. They knew how you liked your wheat bread toasted, never forgot the pickle on side. Big things from a little shop.

Then it changed.

The old place was shuttered and the operation moved to a bigger, better building on the other side of the lot. The flat screen TVs and microphone to call out order numbers came. Now it’s fetching lunch on an assembly line. Portions smaller, prices higher. Mess ups. We're out of that. He doesn't work here anymore. The pickle? Extra charge. Granted, the place looks fantastic, tables everywhere, cool celeb pics on the wall, but the product is nowhere near what it used to be. Ask Genoa in Latham about changing. You can't fit more than two people in that place. New building? Expansion? Nah. They just make the best sandwich going.

It’s time to go back to the beginning.

I’m looking for the next sandwich shop, a hole in the wall that makes great food at great prices. And I’m looking for the next group of guys to crawl out of the woodpile like the HANGOVER gang once did. I’m looking to find them before someone else does and destroys the whole deal with exploitation. When something gets bigger it never gets better.

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Brian Huba

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