This is the first Smithee film I've seen with a real live trailer on TV and everything.
Another sadly ironic entry in the Curse of Smithee, as The Master mops up another moronic mess.
HELLRAISER: BLOODLINE, the latest in Mirimax's moribund scare-series, was originally directed by ex- effects whiz-kid Kevin Yeager (he of CHILD'S PLAY and Chuckie fame) to be an epic tale tracing the Cenobites through the Victorian era, present day and the Future (in space, yet). For this Lean-esque scenario, 36 days were allotted with a budget you could balance on a pin. Yeagher was quickly shelved, with director Joe Chapelle (HALLOWEEN 7 or 8) ushered in. The poor shnook did what he could, but the Guys in Suits kept asking for changes, then looked for people to blame once the changes were shot and turned out to cost Money.
Enter Smithee, and more testimony that our hero can do anything, as he took this myopic mess and fashioned a releasable (if not watchable) film out of the cans of moaning celluloid cluttering editing rooms from North Carolina to La-La.
And when the critics snarl and froth over the massive suckage of this one, again, the original works of the Master will be shunted to the side, leaving only us faithful to keep the light of truth burning during yet another dark night of the Smithee.
Worse, we will never see the (now cut out footage) Smithee revenge ploy on his least favorite actress--the ever-squatting Karen Black--whom he'd cast as a restoration-period Cenobite trollop hoisted by her own fleshy petards (efx courtesy KNB Group).
Still, I may yet make the pilgrimage for this one (research, you know), even making the sacrifice of seeing it in a theatre rather than as the master intended (i.e. stumbling on it in a beer-soaked haze at 3 am).
MESSENGER, clearly timed to coincide with the revival of Scorsese's landmark movie, stars Emilio Estevez as "Digger" Digby, a troubled Desert Storm vet whose experiences as a NYC bike messenger provoke him to sociopathic violence. Sean Young as Charlotte, a fund-raiser for National Public Radio, and Christina Ricci as Poptop, a street urchin dealing in counterfeit Max Rack postcards, co-star as the two women Digby loves. MESSENGER, it is rumored, boasts Estevez's best performance since FREEJACK. However, the very graphic carnage at the film's conclusion---Estevez careening on his bike through a weekend mob in Washington Square, alternately blowing a police whistle and screaming "NO BRAKES! NO BRAKES!" while raking drug dealers, guitarists, and fire eaters with gunfire from his souped-up helmet and kneepads---reportedly is excessive even by Smithee's standards.
But you can bet that when Video Blitz begins selling MESSENGER OF DOOM -- alas, this is another Smithee film theatre distributors threaten to pass by -- I will be there with my $9.95 in hand.