it is well known that new york city is one of the leading metropolis's of all things bootleg. from knockoff jeans to unreleased dvd's to bad pulp literature, you can get a "copy" of whatever you want on the streets of the city and at just a fraction of the price and the cost of varying quality. on my way through the cities dense downtown streets, a pass booths dealing all manner of illegal items. a dark, island woman drags her fingers across an array of designer sunglasses, herself donning a pair of large Dolce & Gabbana aviators. an asian man with what looks like a total of 3 teeth stands in front of a blanket, a large selection of leather Prada hand bags to choose from layed about, a myriad of colors striking up from the sidewalk. a young black kid sits in front of a makeshift bookshelf, the top two displaying recent best sellers wrapped in plastic, some fiction some non, some counter culture and some beach reading, the bottom shelves are filled with what a sign above them claim are authentic African movies translated into english. i was unaware of the demand for that.
in any event, surrendering to the machine that is new york, i have begun buying bootleg movies to watch when im bored. i know, it is not nice to buy bootleg stuff, i should be painfully aware of this since it is my business to be wary of any sort of piracy, being a victim of the record industry. but these arent movies that i would pay to see in the theater, so its not as if im taking money from the studio. how could i be taking money that would have never been in the first place? and if i truly like it, i'll most likely buy the real dvd when it comes out for the special features [and better quality] anyway. not that i have to make any excuses to you.
with that being said, i want to post the very first bootleg dvd review on this site. i will be reviewing the movies as well as the overall quality of the dvd. welcome to the bootleg cinema.
The Bourne Ultimatum
i was pretty excited to see this movie. the review quotes they use in the trailers are pretty lofty. calling it "the best action movie in years," and saying it will, "change the face of cinema," or some such. im not the biggest action movie fan [im more into sci-fi romantic dramadies], but i do have a weakness for seeing shit get blowed up. anyway, i cant comment on how good the actual movie was because the picture quality was so dark and grainy i couldnt tell what the fuck was going on. i thought it was camera tricks for the opening scene, with a barely recognizable matt damon running around in the dark while being followed by a jerky handheld camera, zoomed in so close that, were the picture quality even remotely good, i could have counted the nose hair hanging from his flaring nostrils. frustrated after 15 minutes, when i realized the whole movie would be in such squalid presentation, i turned it off.
Movie - ???
Bootleg quality - 4
Overall - crap
this was the first of the summer blockbusters i missed this season. the first 2 were pretty good and this is supposedly the final instalment of a trilogy. the expectations were high before it got released, but when it hit theaters the reviews were middling. perfect bootleg material. a flick i anticipated but didnt really seem worth the time or money to see in a movie house. well, the movie itself was deserving of the middling reviews. the first fight scene between spidey and a young goblin was pretty awesome. and the sandman character, especially when he comes alive in a pile of sand, was pretty sweet. but the topher grace thing bored me and the third act just got downright absurd. what was with that dance scene? i thought i was watching a dream sequence. the picture quality was pretty decent but it was wide screen and for some reason, wouldnt format to my television, so about an inch of either side was cut off. not that it totally made a difference, its not as if a wider screen would have made kirsten dunst and tobey macguire grow any lips. whats with that? if they ever went to prison, they could use their strangely thin lips as weapons. kiss of death indeed.
Movie - 5
Bootleg quality - 7
Overall - it was ok
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
i didnt even want to see this movie when it came out in theaters. the first one wasnt offensively bad, but it wasnt very good, and the acting sometimes made me cringe. this only thing that interested me about this movie was the silver surfer. i dont even know what he is but he looked pretty cool in the trailers. well, the movie itself was again, not offensively bad but not very good. the silver surfer was indeed pretty cool as promised, and there were some epic shots of some giant smoke monster about to eat the earth or some shit. but in the end i was just bored. the dvd quality was the same as spiderman 3, but the wide screen problem was barely noticeable. still, i kind of wish i had my 90 minutes back.
Movie - 4
Bootleg quality - 8
Overall - meh [shrugs shoulders]
oh man, this was going to the money shot. im pretty pissed i missed this in the theaters [ok, so sometimes i DO see bootlegs i would have spent money on in the theaters. suck it weinstein brothers!], so was really excited to have it at home. and man i jumped through hoops for this one. the dvd player on my PS2 has been acting funny, so me and L-tootbuckle hopped on her vespa, IN THE RAIN, and headed to down target where we copped a new player for only $50. i got home and set the whole thing up [well, a friend did, im not much of a "man" in that sense], hooked into the stereo for that ghetto home theater effect and all. we put in the movie and i sat back to enjoy the fruits of all my labor [which isnt much when you think that the fruits of all my labor is a $50 dvd player and a bootleg movie, but i digress...]. well it started out pretty good, they have these fake trailers that are pretty funny, and the picture quality is supposed to be bad so, in effect, it looked pretty good. but then i saw something in the corner of the screen.
it looked like a bushel of hair.
i eyed it curiously, wondering what it was, when suddenly it turned to the side in what looked like a motion to speak to some other, unseen bushel of hair to the right of it. uh oh, i thought. but again, the whole movie is sort of camp in that way, so maybe it was supposed to look like you were watching it in a theater. then it happened, from the far right of the screen, a person, their full torso blocking the projector, walked across the movie. fucking hell, i said to myself. then from the far left, another person walked across the screen, this time stopping a few times to say excuse me to a row of unseen bushels of hair. then i groaned, ahh christ, i done been bootlegt [real word, look it up]. this is the risk you take when getting bootleg dvd's. there is that one chance that it will be too bootleg, and make you feel dirty just watching it. i have a friend that got a bootleg a few years ago, the guy that recorded it had forgotten to take off the lens cap. the whole movie was blackness and the sound of popcorn being munched. i couldnt take it, i took the movie out. i never even made it to the first frame.
Movie - fuck if i know
Bootleg quality - 4
Overall - boooo hisssss
and there you have it. the first instalment of the bootleg cinema review house. upcoming we have Die Hard 4: Live free or Die hard, Transformers, the Simpsons, Sicko and possibly Knocked Up. stay tuned, and remember, dont illegally download music!