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Rollerball = worst movie ever
Shits and Giggles
Rollerball = worst movie ever
Starring: Chris Klein, LL Cool J, Rebecca Romijn-Stamos
Directed By: John McTiernan
By Aaron St. John
Gazette File Photo
For far too long, there's been a trend within Hollywood to try and make
some easy money by remaking an old film.
In recent years, remakes of classic films like Pyscho and Planet Of The
Apes have been so horrible that they damage the lustre of the original.
With few exceptions, these endeavors are invariably left on the cutting
room floor. Rollerball is no exception.
Directed by John McTiernan, who helmed the 1988 blockbuster Die Hard but
has since wallowed in one bad film after another, Rollerball is no
This new version follows the adventures of Jonathan Cross (Chris Klein),
as he is convinced by his friend Marcus (LL Cool J) to play a violent new
sport called Rollerball in Asia. The Rollerball league is controlled by
the evil Alexi Petrovich (Jean Reno) who will stop at nothing to increase
his profit margins.
With it's non-stop action, horrendous dialogue and barely cohesive plot,
Rollerball might have made a half-decent video game, but as a film it's
barely watchable. Spawned by the same production team behind last year's
equally moronic The Fast And The Furious, Rollerball is all about style
over substance, filled with quick edits and jittery camera work, flashy
cars and high-speed action sequences.
While those elements can be used to great effect when melded together with
some substantive material, in this case it just demonstrates everything
that is wrong with modern movie-making.
Fresh off his success as a dumb guy, Chris Klein (American Pie) shows off
his range by making his character in this film slightly more dense than
usual. His performance is the worst of the bunch, but LL Cool J (Halloween
H20, Deep Blue Sea) and Rebecca Romijn-Stamos (X-Men) are not much better.
Even Rollerball's action sequences are sub-par.
McTiernan's work is now lumbering and stale. One of the movie's
centrepieces – a long scene set in the desert at night – is shot using
some sort of night vision filter, giving everything a green glow. The
effect is not only annoying, but it's also hard on the eyes. Elsewhere,
the film contains footage of several Rollerball matches clearly meant to
appear fast-paced and reckless, but are instead disorienting.
Towards the end of the picture, as the characters slowly realize the kind
of manipulation they've been the victims of, the film attempts to make
some sort of comment about the evils of media conglomerates.
That's a fair enough theme for a movie, but given Rollerball was produced
by one such organizations, it seems likely this plot twist was simply
designed to cash-in on this currently hot theme.
A horrible film from every conceivable angle, Rollerball is a fine lesson
in how not to make a movie.