'Walkathon' struts across two screens
It's no secret that I love Paul Walker. The 2Hot 2Talented hard-bodied bro has had a string of amazing films, cementing his place in movie history. Walker first made a splash in the Disney surfing buddy comedy "Meet the Deedles"(not to be confused with Peter Jackson's Muppets-on-acid "Meet the Feebles," which I did once, and I'm not really sure how those kids handled the scene in which the bunny puppet thinks he has an STD).
Then, Walker played a frat-cop in "The Fast and The Furious" movies, the second one being the best because it had Tyrese in it. And did anyone but me see that movie "Into the Blue?" Okay, so Paul Walker and Jessica Alba are supposed to be hunting for pirate treasure, but the only booty I was interested in was Walker's. So I know that Jessica Alba is supposed to be Miss Hottie McHothot, but the real tastycake of the sea was clearly my boy Paul.
So, this weekend, when I found out two Paul Walker movies were playing simultaneously, there was only one option. That's right, a Walkathon. First up was "Running Scared." Words cannot articulate the genius of this film. The writer/director, Wayne Kramer, must have seen "True Romance" about 80,000 times and was like, "What if that scene where Tony Soprano beats the crap out of Patricia Arquette could last the entire movie?" Except throw in Paul Walker as a family man/criminal, slipping in and out of a New Jersey accent, running around like a madman searching for a gun that could implicate him and his gang in the shooting of a cop 12 years earlier. The only problem: the gun is in the hands of a 10-year-old boy who used it to shoot his crazy Russian dad who has a giant boner for John Wayne! Sounds totally awesome, right?
Over the top doesn't even begin to describe Kramer's totally nuts direction. And you can tell that Kramer let the actors really get into character. Walker seems to think he's James Dean with Tourettes, running around cursing and punching walls with EMOTION! I can totally feel his pain. And his character makes inferences with barely any evidence. Okay, so the gun he needs is hiding in the top part of a toilet in a diner. But, it's not there anymore. So, he just checks the time card for the last janitor to leave and figures he must have the gun. This is apparently enough circumstantial evidence to bust down this dude's door and start waiving a gun in the face of his wife and baby. You go, Paul Walker. Point guns at babies.
And speaking of babies, there was totally a baby crying throughout this hard, R-rated movie. As soon as I started imagining what kind of parent would bring a baby to this movie, it got to the scene in which the 10-year-old boy Paul Walker is looking for is abducted by child molesters straight out of Mr. Roger's neighborhood. It was so extreme I needed a Mountain Dew.
I thought that the genius of "Running Scared" couldn't be matched, but then it was time for the second movie in the Walkathon: "Eight Below." If you haven't heard of this one, it's Paul Walker as an arctic explorer who is forced to abandon his eight snow dogs on a base in Antarctica after an intense storm. The trailer bills this movie as "the greatest tale of survival ever told." Really? The greatest ever? Eight dogs? Not like, people escaping the Holocaust?
I was skeptical of "Eight Below" at first. I mean, the bar was set pretty high with "Snow Dogs." These dogs didn't even have sunglasses or talk. But, somehow "Eight Below" pulled it off, whether it was falling back on cop movie clich?s (there's one dog named Old Jack who's close to retirement, aka he had dead written all over him) or adding in sweet action sequences with an evil computer-generated seal. Also, Paul Walker gave the single best performance of his career, especially during the part where he first learns that his dogs probably won't survive. You can just see his mental process, thinking: "My dogs. They are totally going to die." Emote Paul, emote with every muscle in your pea brain.
In conclusion, Paul Walker + Snow Dogs - Cuba Gooding Jr. + Killer Seal = "Eight Below." Maya was so the cutest dog, am I right?