Monday, July 16, 2007
Yet Another Goofy Movie Analogy To Describe the Giants
There's this movie from the 80's called Legend, directed by Ridley Scott and starring Tom Cruise. I'm sure you've heard of it for one reason or another, maybe because of the mini-controversy that surrounded it after the producers scrapped the original music score (by the great Jerry Goldsmith) in favor of a more kid-friendly one by Tangerine Dream.
Anyways, it's really bad. The idea was to tell an old-fashioned fairy tale, in the Brothers Grimm mold, I suppose, and that's a novel premise, especially for a modern film audience. Unfortunately, the movie just plain blows. The plot involves some hot chick who is the embodiment of innocence, which means some evil creatures want to kill her, and they also want to kill the last unicorn, because if they do, then all light will be vanquished forever, and darkness will rule, blah, blah blah. Some fairies try to save her, but it's really hard to care because the movie is really boring and stupid, and Tom Cruise looks totally embarrassed throughout the proceedings. Again, it's a very bad movie.
There's one redeeming quality, and it's a big one. The villain, known as the Lord of Darkness (aka the big horned guy), and played by Tim Curry, is awesome. As in, one of the greatest villainous concoctions in movie history. I'm not kidding. He's huge, imposing, evil as hell, and every time he appears onscreen, he bursts into an eloquent soliloquy in which he basically just brags about what a bastard he is. Curry's performance (under a mountain of makeup, you can only recognize him from his trademark sneer) is a Shakespearean delight. It makes the film worth watching, at least if you have nothing to do and catch it on TV or something.
So think of Tim Lincecum as the Lord of Darkness (yeah he looks innocent, but, brother, his fastball is sinister), and think of the Giants' team as the shitty movie he's stuck in. Right now, the rise of Lincecum is pretty much the only thing exciting about this team. Just look at his performance today. He still needs to cut down on the walks, but pitching in a historically tough ballpark on pitchers, against a good Cubs lineup, he dominated.
Watching Lincecum make good hitters look foolish is worth the price of sitting through the usual horrible at bats by the Giant offense. In my days when the Giants were contenders, I'd make time during my day to be sure I could watch every game or listen to every broadcast. Back then the team was a can't-miss, like Aliens.
Now? Not so much, except on the days when Timmy pitches. Seeing his name penciled in as the game's probable starter is enough to make me fit my day around the Giant game. You see, watching him rise to the top ranks of NL hurlers amidst the grating sub-mediocrity around him is like watching Tim Curry's brilliant performance in an otherwise immensely crappy movie. Stop and watch his scenes, then turn it to "Dancing With the Stars" when he leaves the screen. With Lincecum, watch him pitch his game, then turn on the apathy when Barry Zito goes up against a Cub lineup full of righty sluggers (ugh).
All right so I realize that this analogy could have been made using any movie with a good villain, but the ratio of villain badassness to movie shittiness in Legend is just too great to pass by. I guess the comparison would also be apt with Alan Rickman in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, or Powers Boothe in Sudden Death, or Patrick Stewart in Masterminds. Wait, check that last one.