Outlaw Awards 2000
Due to a change of policy this year’s outlaw awards have been placed in a sealed envelope in the library of vern archives (on the floor somewhere) and will not be available to the public. We apologize for any convenience issues this may cause. In other words if you got a problem with that you know what you can do and you can do it off. (I mean you can fuck off is what I mean you can do.)
No I’m just fuckin with you guys. Last year’s awards were NOT placed in a sealed envelope and in fact were not even finalized until today. You see I am a dude who has watched a couple award shows in my time. And one thing I have noticed is this – all that crap they give awards to is forgotten in about four months time and never watched again, ever, unless you count when you’re flipping the channels past Private Benjamin or some shit and you stop and you go, “What is this?” and it’s Kramer vs. Kramer and you keep watching until you have to leave for work.
To name a few examples: Driving Miss Daisy. Forrest Gump. The one with Marisa Tomei. Shakespeare in Love. Rain Man. Dances with Wolves. Out of Africa. Ordinary People. The Karate Kid. A Beautiful Mind. etc. I’m talking about movies that are less than ten or fifteen years old and their seeming importance has faded away like the popularity of the Police Academy pictures or those commercials where the little clay dude was trying to destroy dominoes pizza to get revenge on them for making tasty pizza or whatever it was his grievance was, I’m not sure exactly they never really gave him the proper forum to express what kind of a value system he was working from but the point is he was an anti-pizza extremist.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m sure there is someone somewhere who will defend one or two of these pictures with something stronger than “It seemed pretty good at the time.” And more power to you. Somebody has to stand up for a picture that nobody else give’s a rat’s ass about. For example, you motherfuckers are all wrong about Island of Dr. Moreau, and only I know it. But other than a few looneys nobody really thinks about these movies very often. Nobody has a tradition of rewatching them once a year, nobody remembers fondly how it affected them on that first viewing. Nobody ever feels like watching Dances With Wolves or A Beautiful Mind again and if they do, you assume there’s something seriously wrong with them.
I mean nobody treasures the dvds of these pictures in their collection the way they do, say, good movies. And nobody would try to claim that those were the best or most important pictures that came out those years.
Well 2000 is a pretty fucking important year because in the old movies, it was the space age. So what I decided to do to combat this inherent problem with awards was to give the 2000 outlaw awards a 1 (one) year Hindsight Allowance Period. The idea is that with one year of retrospection type behavior, I would be able to create a perfect gallery of winners, almost guaranteed to stand the test of time.
Well I probaly failed though but let’s open these fuckin envelopes huh people?
This is one of the funniest and scariest movies of the year. It explains the appeal (both sincere and ironic) pimps have to young men by showing their charismatic talk and ridiculous behavior. At the same time it shows the damage they do to women’s lives without ever going over the top or getting preachy.
For such young directors the Hughes Brothers sure show restraint. They never once throw in an editorial comment or show an opposing viewpoint. They just have to let these dudes talk for a while, and there’s everything you need to know about what’s wrong with the prostitution industry. Some people might consider them whistleblowers or industry reformers but I think they are just a couple of born filmmakers who had a camera there at the right time and knew how to put together a real good funk soundtrack.
This year’s winner is the great Benicio Del Toro who has officially replaced Sean Penn as the best actor of that generation, due to him having never done the movie I AM SAM. The closest he’s come to oscar bait was when he grew a fat belly and poured beer all over himself for FEAR AND LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS. You know, like RAGING BULL.
Anyway I thought he was good in TRAFFIC but his real outstanding performance of this particular year happens to be the lesser known (and lesser) movie WAY OF THE GUN. He plays an almost Clint Eastwoodian character who makes up for what he lacks in personality (which is alot) by standing around, smoking and looking cool. I don’t remember if he even talked in this movie but man did he look cool. I remember in this one scene he was just standing there, and it was, I mean that was really cool the way he did that in that scene there, in my opinion.
Honorable mention: Chow Yun Fat, CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
Well I almost had an award for “Breakthrough Badass Performance” and I woulda given it to “Huge Ackman” who supposedly played Logan Wolverine in the X-Men picture. But come on, even if I bought that “Huge Ackman” noise it would be a pretty ridiculous award to give now that it’s 2002 and we know that all this allegedly existing individual has been in is a bunch of bad romantic comedies where he either walks around shirtless or wears a fucking blouse.
The fact is I do not buy the official story. That is not Huge playing Mr. Wolverine. It is in fact Young Clint Eastwood. At first I thought it was a computer effect but now that I’ve seen Final Fantasy and Digital Domain’s Young James Brown for the Funk Blast movie ride at Seattle’s EMP, it is clear that the technology does not exist to create such a realistic likeness. I mean look at the rollover image over there. Sure we can put a man on the moon, we can grow a human ear out of a mouse’s ass, we can make broccoli and cauliflaur get down together but we cannot yet revive make a computer that can shit out a Young Clint that’s that realistic.
So I can’t explain this one. Maybe it’s an echo in time, like a ghost. Maybe this dimension has a hernia and pieces of other worlds are dripping in. I just don’t know. But good job Clint. You don’t need those blades to be cool but it sure beats that astronaut shit.
This was another tough call and sure to be controversial. Ghost Dog’s performance in the movie Ghost Dog: Way of the Samurai for example was unforgettable. He had that lazy eye, slow, calm talk and blank expression but knew how to slice a dude up with a sword or run in and shoot everybody between the eyes in about two seconds. However there were some who felt that he was too big and slow, too Dolemite and not enough Jet Li or something. They are wrong and should probaly keep their mouths shut to avoid future embarassment but this is a free country, moreso in the year 2000.
Chow Yun Fat was also a strong contender. He stretched his Badass range doing a very quiet and regal character who can fly around and use magical swords and martial arts instead of the old jump and shoot two guns at the same time routine. I’ve NEVER seen the guy do martial arts in any of his films and here he is taking over a role originally planned for Jet Li, and proving he was the better choice. Jesus!
And until the last minute I was also considering Richard Roundtree’s supporting role in Shaft 2000, where he played Uncle Shaft. However while collecting photos from the movie for the collage over there I realized there was no choice but Samuel L. Jackson. Shaft was not the best Badass picture of the year and doesn’t hold a bic lighter to the two pictures mentioned above but Sam sure was at the top of his game. Here he just glows with every power that makes him “cool” and Badass. His intense glare is more focused than ever. They dress him up in long leather coats and shave his hair and goatee just right and somehow he really does become the 2000 version of what Shaft was back then. I mean this dude will kick your fuckin ass. He’ll quit the force and decapitate you with the badge. And he’s in his ’50s!
Of course she falls in love with one of her opponents and his name is Adrian. Get it? It’s pretty formulaic but it works.
And you know why? Michelle Rodriguez. I mean I guess she’s just some hollywood chick but she is convincing in this role. Her eyes seem so full of hate. I mean look at those pictures there. This bitch is gonna spit on you and tell you to thank her.
Since this movie Rodriguez has gone on to other tough girl roles including one based on a video game where she fights computer animated zombie dogs. I think eventually she’ll get the right vehicle to make a real difference in the world of Badass Females.
Crouching Tiger and the Hidden Dragon did not invent the idea of chinese people flyin around kickin each other. It also did not invent the epic chinese mythology movie. But it sure did create a particularly masterful entry in this great genre.
I know you’ve heard it all before, I don’t really need to explain my standpoint on this one. I mean what kind of a fuckin freako would you have to be to not like this movie anyway. After the first fight scene, the audience I saw it with exploded into applause. I felt the hairs standing up on the back of my neck. You don’t get that in the van damme pictures, I don’t care HOW good he does the splits.
Point is, I know saying this movie is good is like saying the sky is blue and that michael douglas likes em young and welsh. So there’s not much to add here but let me just point out that this is a movie that showed us a different side of Chow Yun Fat, that finally gave Michelle Yeoh a good role to be seen by mainstream american audiences, that introduced us to an amazing young talent who would go on to such roles as being the chick from Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon in Rush Hour 2.
More importantly this is a true auteur/outlaw picture because it is a director who did not let industry rules or societal expectations stop him from doing the picture he wanted to do. What do you do after you’ve won oscars doing a jane austen movie and some critically acclaimed ’70s dysfunctional family thing? Most people would not go off to asia to film an epic martial arts film in cantonese.
But that’s what he needed to do. That’s what the world needed him to do. So he did it.
An outlaw for you my friend. Throw those oscars in the trash.
I mean they just don’t make em better than this picture. This one has it all. The Badass action scenes. The dreamy, restrained cinematography and editing. The dry sense of humor. The hypnotic, outlaw award winning music. The unexpected meshing of samurai and american mob film genres. The themes of loyalty and honor. The intricate motifs of cultures and creeds colliding, or working together, or dying, or sputtering back to life. This is one you can, and should, and better fuckin watch again and again. And each time you get something more out of it. Until you die. And fuck if I know what happens then. There are many different ideas about that and I’m not about to get into them. But like I said that is sort of the theme of this movie anyway come to think of it, the different ways to view the world and what not.
Can you name one movie that even reminds you of the Ghost Dog feel? I can – last year’s outlaw award winning The Limey. But this one is stranger and owes less to Point Blank. (Not that it’s bad to owe Point Blank. I think I still owe it five bucks.)
(Sorry about that. I think that was some kind of witticism or something. An accident.)
This is the best and most original hitman movie I have seen in years. Enough of this wacky hitman shit, this is the real deal. It is also the best american samurai movie, far surpassing the American Samurai movies.
I am proud to honor Ghost Dog: Way of the Samurai as the best fuckin picture of the year.