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SCRAPING THE BARREL #2: Gigli October 26, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Cinematics.
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Gigli

I’ve always loved watching notoriously bad films but never really found the time or, well, a valid reason to actually sit down and watch them. But now, with no college on Wednesdays and a group of comrades willing to suffer with me, I can finally get around to watching some of the tackiest, most ludicrous and dire hours of my life. I’m hoping that most of them will fall into the ’so bad it’s good’ category.

The film: Gigli

The plot (or lack thereof) in a nutshell: A lesbian gangster makes friends with a male gangster who shouts a lot and a retarded man who they are holding hostage. Seriously.

What’s it like? We’ve all heard of Gigli. The notoriously dire film that temporarily killed the careers of stars Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, but also was the catalyst for their ensuing relationship…

It’s hard to see how these two fell for each other. There’s a complete lack of chemistry here, instead replaced with endless conversations about her lesbianism and how he hates her lesbianism.

One thing I didn’t see coming about this film was the prominence of the mentally disabled character Brian, played by The Hangover’s Justin Bartha (sadly it’s probably the best acting performance in the film). After being kidnapped by Ben Affleck’s character, Larry Gigli, he is held at Gigli’s apartment for days. At one point Gigli shouts at him and asks “why he can’t act normal”. It’s curious that writer and director Martin Brest decided to make the character disabled – only shooting himself in the foot. This shocking insensitivity and lack of any political correctness is really unsurprising when you see Gigli as a whole.

Things plod along fairly strangely for the first half an hour, with Gigli being established as the best gangster-for-hire in town, but after this it’s clear that he’s completely inept and doesn’t seem to actually have any talent to speak of. When Lopez enters the picture as Ricky, she and Gigli have a lot of conversations where he loses his temper with her and she sits there, silent and ‘playing it cool’. This scene is repeated at least five times.

You’d think maybe things would improve a little when Al Pacino and Christopher Walken make their cameos, but it actually gets worse. Walken has a bizarre speech where he goes into this weird accent and asks Gigli and Lopez’s character Ricki to join him for some ice cream and pie. “Put some on your head,” he says. “Your tongue would slap your brains out trying to get to it!” Oh right…

Later in the film, the two are tasked to cut off the handicapped man’s thumb. So naturally, not wanting to hurt their new friend, they sneak into a morgue and steal one from a dead patient. And Gigli breaks a kid’s laptop and suggests he visit “suckmydick.com” as he walks away. Ricki’s ex turns up for all of five minutes, slits her wrists, goes to hospital, and disappears without another mention.

There’s also a subplot about Brian’s wish to visit a beach like the one in Baywatch, which he calls “The Baywatch”. His desire to go there is mentioned many times, and predictably at the end he finally goes there. And then he somehow ends up in a music video or ad or something where he dances with an Australian woman, because, as we know from earlier in the film, he likes the Australian accent and regularly calls an Australian talking clock.

If any of what I’ve said here doesn’t make sense, that’s because it doesn’t. Neither does the film. It just doesn’t make any sense.

So bad it’s good? As a whole, the film is complete torture to watch. It misses every mark in a spectacular fashion. How anyone signed on to do this film, which looks like it was put written, filmed and edited in a weekend, is beyond me. It does have some memorable scenes, however, that certainly fall under the category of ‘so bad it’s good’. Jennifer Lopez’s lengthy speech about why the vagina is better than the penis is uncomfortably hilarious, as is the scene when she suggests Gigli perform oral sex on her. As if it was the most attractive thing to say at that moment, she says “It’s turkey time. Gobble gobble,” ‘seductively’ opening and closing her legs at the time.

See it. Just to say you’ve seen it.

Don’t just take my word for it!
The comments of my fellow sufferers

  • Olivia – “Gigli, rhymes with really, as in did this film really get made?”
  • Tara
  • Orla
  • Ali
  • Laura

Standout quotes:

  • “If by some fuckin’ miracle long shot you haven’t heard of my reputation let me tell you who the fuck I am! I am the fuckin’ Sultan of Slick, Sadie! I am the rule of fuckin’ cool! You wanna be a gangster? You wanna be a thug? You sit at my fuckin’ feet and gather the pearls that emanate forth from me! Because I’m the fuckin’ original, straight-first-foremost, pimp-mack, fuckin hustler, original gangster’s gangster!”
  • “Let us reconsider women for a minute. Their form: Neck. Shoulders. Legs. Hips. I think pretty cool. Now, as far as your famous penis goes…The penis is like some sort of…bizarre sea slug…or like a really long toe. I mean, it’s handy, important even. But the pinnacle of sexual design? The top of the list of erotic destinations?
    I don’t think so. One’s first impulse is to kiss what? To kiss the lips. Firm…delicious lips. Sweet lips. Surrounding a warm, moist, dizzyingly scented mouth That’s what everyone wants to kiss. Not a toe. Not a sea slug. A mouth. And why do you think that is, stupid? Because the mouth is the twin sister…the almost exact look-alike of the what? Not the toe. The mouth is the twin sister…of the vagina. And all creatures big and small seek the orifice. The opening. To be taken in, engulfed. To be squeezed and lovingly crushed by what is truly…the all-powerful, all-encompassing. Now, if it’s design you’re concerned with…hidden meanings, symbolism and power…forget the top of Mount Everest. Forget the bottom of the sea, the moon, the stars. There is no place, nowhere, that has been the object…of more ambitions, more battles
    than the sweet, sacred mystery…between a woman’s legs that I am proud to call…my pussy.”
  • “She’s like the ones at the Baywatch. They make my penis sneeze.”
  • “It’s turkey time. Gobble gobble.”

Curious? View the trailer…

Disclaimer: The trailer makes the film look marginally better than it actually is.

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