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February 27th, 2013 AP KRYZA | Movie Reviews & Stories
 

Lies My Multiplex Told Me

The Last Exorcism Part II and Hollywood’s appetite for deception.

screen_exorcism_3917IMAGE: Lionsgate / CBS Films
Apparently, one last go-around isn’t enough. At least that’s what this weekend’s debut of The Last Exorcism Part II: The Exorcisming seems to imply (it wasn’t screened for critics, or actually called that). There’s just too much story to tell, even when your low-budget surprise puts finality right in the title. Either that, or producers realized people might want to see more of that bloodstained girl and said, “Oh shit. We should have called this The First in a Series of Exorcisms Whose Quality Will Diminish Until People Stop Coming.”

That would be honest. But The Last Exorcism is one of many flicks whose titles are either confusing or straight-up lies. Spoilers, of course, follow. 


Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)

True, the “Last Crusade” technically refers to the old knight that Indy and his pops encounter when they reach the Holy Grail, but the title had a double meaning: It was supposed to be a sendoff for one of filmdom’s greatest heroes. Then, of course, he went on another crusade involving aliens, bouffant-sporting monkeys and goddamned Shia LaBeouf.

What it should be called: Indiana Jones and the Last Good Movie. 


The NeverEnding Story (1984)

The whimsical story of boy warriors, rock-biters and dragons that look suspiciously like puppies clocks in at a sparse 102 minutes. Sure, there are a handful of sequels, but combined they still clock in at fewer minutes than Andy Warhol’s Sleep.

What it should be called: The Fairly Short and Concise Story. 


Honey, I Blew Up the Kid (1992)

Having previously shrunk his kids, Rick Moranis’ scientist takes the next logical step: He turns his gurgling, fugly toddler into something of an OshKosh Godzilla. At no point does said toddler explode, sending gigantic chunks of curly hair and baby teeth raining down on a terrified city. 

What it should be called: Honey, Our Kid Got Bigulated.


John Dies at the End (2012)

The ultimate spoiler in the title isn’t even true. John dies toward the beginning and then spends the movie chilling in an alternate dimension. At the end, he is very much alive and ready to play in his indie-rock band. 

What it should be called: The Johns Are Alright. 


Killing Them Softly (2012)

The film forgoes excessive violence for ham-fisted allegories about the financial crisis, but when people actually do get killed, it’s gruesome and loud. 

What it should be called: Killing Them Occasionally but Brutally. 


The Cider House Rules (1999)

By no stretch of the word does this movie rule. It’s pandering, depressing, forced and corny. Oh, the title refers to actual rules posted in the film’s orphanage? Well, that sucks too. 

What it should be called: The Cider House Totally Sucks. 


Whip It (2009)

Drew Barrymore’s grrl-power tribute to roller derby sounds like the kind of flick that would leave E.L. James quivering in ecstasy. Sadly, at no point does Ellen Page don leather for some BDSM lite. But she does discover her inner feminist by beating the shit out of other chicks, so that’s kind of rad. 

What it should be called: Bliss, the Flat-Track Feminist. 


Grown Ups (2010)

Adam Sandler and his buddies go on vacation with a bunch of hot actresses and film themselves in a perpetual state of suspended adolescence as they play on water slides and get hit in the dicks. 

What it should be called: Rich Assholes Get Richer by Duping You Into Paying to Watch Them Behave Like Children Because You’re an Idiot, So Here Comes a Sequel. 


SEE IT: The Last Exorcism Part II is rated PG-13. It opens Friday at Pioneer Place, Eastport, Lloyd Center, Cedar Hills, Clackamas, Division, Oak Grove.

 
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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