OK, let me get the good shit about The Talented Mr. Ripley out of the way first: good acting, spectacular Italian scenery, and Gwyneth Paltrow. Gwyneth can do no wrong in my book. I’ve got half a mind to stick a foot in Brad Pitt’s ass for dumping her after Seven. Man, I’ll Seven Years in Tibet all up and down his well-groomed ass. Or maybe I’ll challenge him to an act-off instead. I could probably win that one. I’m here for you Gwyneth!
Speaking of Seven Years in Tibet, watching The Talented Mr. Ripley felt like Seven Years in Theater. By the end of this one, my ass was deader than Grover Cleveland. Matt Damon plays Tom Ripley, a poor bisexual who gets sent to Italy to retrieve the son of a wealthy American industrialist. Once there, he kills the guy and steals his identity. Then he starts murdering his way through the Fortune 500, always keeping one step ahead of the cops.
Let me state point blank that I don’t give two rancid dingo testicles for stories about bored wealthy people. I was rooting for Ripley to kill all those idle French Riviera livin’ bastards. Give me a movie about arc- welding strippers, or professional bouncers who write haikus. Flowery-tongued aristocrats with nothing to do but yacht around Venice just doesn’t engorge the ol’ donger. I had nothing in common with any of these characters and neither will Joe Sixpack moviegoer. But this movie wasn’t made for us Joe Sixpacks which is why it will tank and be out on video next week.
The thing that really irritated me about The Talented Mr. Ripley was the way people, particularly Mr. Ripley himself, talked. Nobody really says shit like, “The closets of my mind are dark and cluttered, secretive and trapped in the basement of madness.” And Rufus and I were blindsided by all the homoeroticism. I went to look at Gwyneth Paltrow, not Matt Damon’s package. At one point, while Matt scampered about in one of those marblebag European swimsuits, my hand accidentally brushed Rufus’ arm while I was trying to get some of his popcorn. We both jumped up immediately, put a seat between us and began a loud, baritone discussion of vice grips and their myriad uses. You may think that was inconsiderate, but to hell with all the other moviegoers, they were as bored as we were by this faux art crap. Watching this flick was like trying to blow a nut after two forties of Schlitz Malt Liquor: It tried too hard and too long and still ended up a limp disappointment.