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Friday, 28 May 2010

Short Cuts: Humorous Showbiz Insults

SHORT CUTS 
 Humorous Showbiz Insults 

A ever-growing comical collection of brief but apposite critical reviews that use or abuse the title of the work being reviewed ...

THEATRE

THE ADMIRABLE CRICHTON (1931)
For Crichton out loud!
Walt Winchell

APPLAUSE! (1970)
Should be called “Clap!”
Los Angeles Times

AQUARIUM (2005)
Aquarium sinks under the weight of its own bloated narrative.
Rebecca Milzoff, New York magazine (Aug 16, 2005)

THE BELLS (1970)
Clang!
Milton Shulman, Evening Standard

A BISHOP MISBEHAVES
A new high for misleading titles.
Walt Winchell

BOEING, BOEING
I think I’ll go by boat.
Bernard Levin, Daily Express (1963)

CLASH BY NIGHT by Clifford Odets
Odets, where is thy sting?
Robert Garland

THE CUPBOARD
Bare.
Clive Barnes

DIRTY DANCING (2006)
Not so much dirty dancing as mildly disheveled dancing.
Lyn Gardner, The Guardian (Oct 25, 2006)

DREADFUL NIGHT
Sure is.
Anon



DRUNK ENOUGH TO SAY I LOVE YOU (2006)
I am afraid I am not drunk enough to say that this play is worthy even of a single star.
Tim Walker, Sunday Telegraph (Nov 26, 2006)

AN EVENING WITH GARY LINEKER (1992)
About as meaningful as night in with the Swiss Family Robinson.
James Christopher, Time Out

A GOOD TIME (1900)
No!
Anon

THE GREEKS HAD A WORD FOR IT.
So did the Hebrews - lousy.
Dorothy Parker

HALFWAY TO HELL (1934)
When Mr. Wilbur calls his play, Halfway to Hell, he underestimates the distance.
Brooks Atkinson

THE HOUSE BEAUTIFUL
The House Beautiful is play lousy.
Dorothy Parker, Life

I AM A CAMERA (1951)
Me no Leica.
Walter Kerr

A MAD DREAM (1992)
Neither mad nor dreamy, but dull.
Nick Curtis, Time Out

THE MASTER BUILDER (1885) by Henrik Ibsen
Rather the Master Bewilderer.
The Saturday Review

MIMI LE DUCK (2006)
This duck is plumped and ready for roasting.
Steven Suskin, Variety (Nov. 7, 2006)

POOL (NO WATER) (2006)
Pool (no water): play (no drama).
Susannah Clapp, The Observer (Nov 5, 2006)

Pool (No Water) … play (no good).
Charles Spencer, Daily Telegraph (Nov 3, 2006)

PRICK UP YOUR EARS by Joe Orton
No thanks!
The Spectator

NUMBER SEVEN
Number Seven opened last night. It was misnamed by five.
Alexander Woollcott

THE PRIME OF MISS JEAN BRODIE (2006)

A bloodless Miss Brodie, past its prime.
David Rooney, Variety (Oct 9, 2006)

TARZAN (2006)
You Tarzan. Me looking at watch.
Peter Marks, Washington Post (May 11, 2006)

SHEAR MADNESS (1982)
Sheer Badness.
Anon

STARLIGHT EXPRESS (1987)
Not even worth a low commotion.
Ian Shuttleworth, London City Limits (1992)

TOM JONES by Henry Fielding
Good Fielding. No hit.
Kyle Crichton

TONIGHT OR NEVER
Very well then: I say ‘Never.’
George J. Nathan

VERA OF THE NIHILISTS (1882)
by Oscar Wilde
It must have been vera, vera bad.
Punch

WHAM
Ouch!
Alexander Woollcott

THE WISTERIA TREE
Joshua Logan’s adaptation of Chekhov’s “The Cherry Orchard” set in the South - Southern Fried Chekhov.
Anon cast member

YES AND NO (1938)

No!
Hannan Swaffer

YOU WERE MEANT FOR ME (1948)
That’s what you think.
James Agee

THE SCARLET PIMPERNEL
Frankly, Scarlet, we don't give a damn.
Anon

MOVIES

ADVENTURES OF A PRIVATE EYE (1977)
Surprising that this rock-bottom British ‘sex’ comedy wasn’t called Adventures of a Private Dick.
Chris Petit, Time Out

THE AGONY AND THE ECSTASY (1965)
All agony, no ecstasy.
Judith Crist

AIRPORT (1969)
Could have done with a following wind.
Alexander Walker

ALL THE KING’S MEN (2006)
All The King's Men couldn't put this film back together again.
Chris Tookey, Daily Mail (Oct 27, 2006)

ALONE IN THE DARK (2005)
Alone in the Dark is what you'll be if you pay to see this junk in the theater.
Scott Brown, People magazine (2005)

APOCALYPSE NOW (1979)
Should have been called Apocalypse Later.
Anon

THE AVIATOR (1985)
Doesn’t fly.
Variety magazine

THE BAD NEWS BEARS IN BREAKING TRAINING (1977)

Bad news indeed.
Geoff Brown, Time Out

BEN HUR (1959)
Love Ben, hated Hur.
Mort Sahl

THE BITCH
They should have called it The Botch.
Tim Healey, The World’s Worst Movies (1986)

BLACK EAGLE (1988)
Refile under code-name Black Turkey.
Dominic Wells, Time Out

BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES (1991) adapted from Tom Wolfe’s novel
A Wolfe in sheep’s clothing.
Nigel Andrews, Financial Times (1992)

A misfire of inanities.
Joel Siegel, ABC TV

BOOM (1968)
Should have been called Plop for the pile it resembles.
Gabe Esoe

BREATHLESS (1983) starring Richard Gere
They should have called it Penisless.
Howard Stern

BRING ME THE HEAD OF ALFREDO GARCIA (1974)

Bring me the head of the studio that released this one.
Gene Shalit

CANDY (1968)
As an emetic liquor is dandy, but Candy is quicker.
John Simon
THE CHANCES OF A LIFETIME directed by William Castle
Definitely one that Castle built in the sky. He has sorely missed the chance of HIS lifetime.
Anon

THE CHEAP DETECTIVE (1978)
The Cheap Idea might have been a better title.
Nigel Floyd, Time Out

CLUE (1985) based on the Cluedo board game
All concerned should go directly to jail.
Anne Billson, Time Out

COCKTAIL (1988)
A tale of cock, signifying nothing.
Rupert Smith, Time Out

DANCES WITH WOLVES (1991) starring and directed by Kevin Costner
The Indians should have named him Plays with Camera.
Pauline Kael

THE DOCTOR (1992)
Terminally awful
Nigel Kendall

ELVIRA, MISTRESS OF THE DARK (1985)
Elvira is more mistress of the dork.
Joanne Glasbey, Time Out

ENDLESS LOVE (1981)
Endless? It’s interminable.
Rod McShane, Time Out

A FINE MESS (1986)
A wretched mess.
Anon

GRAND PRIX (1966)
The film is stuck firmly in bottom gear.
Monthly Film Bulletin

HAMBURGER HILL (1987)
The McDonald’s of the war movie.
Brian Case, Time Out

HEARTBURN (1986)
Heartburn? No, just a bad attack of wind.
Chris Peachment, Time Out

HELLO DOLLY (1969)
Goodbye budget.
Harry & Michael Medved

HIGHLANDER (1986)
Scotch missed.
Richard Rayner, Time Out

THE HOLIDAY (2006)
The Holiday is no vacation.
James Berardinelli, ReelViews

JOHN LIVINGSTONE SEAGULL (1973)
This film is strictly for the gullible.
William Wolff, Cue

KISS THE BOYS GOODBYE (1941)
The producers have kept the boys and kissed the script goodbye.
New York Times

NO LEAVE, NO LOVE (1946)
No Comment!
Caroline A. Lejeune

ORCA: KILLER WHALE (1977)
The biggest load of cod imaginable.
Philip Bergson

THE POSEIDON ADVENTURE (1972)

All hull broke loose.
Anon

THE RIVER (1984)
This is one river that seems unlikely to run.
Chris Peachment, Time Out

SANTA CLAUSE 3: THE ESCAPE CLAUSE (2006)
Can I suggest adding a Termination Clause?
Richard Bacon, The People (Nov 19, 2006)

SNAKES ON A PLANE (2006)
Not even worth a hissss.
Peter Travers, Rolling Stone (Aug 18, 2006)

A STAR IS BORN (1976)
A bore is starred.
Village Voice

STEP UP (2006)
It’s strictly dumb dancing … A step down for all concerned.
Chris Tookey, Daily Mail (Oct 27, 2006)

THE STUNT MAN (1979)
Stunted, not stunning.
Time Out

STUNTS (1977)
Less than cunning.
Roger Parsons

S.W.A.T. (2003)
How much fun will you get from it? S.Q.U.A.T.
Anton Bitel, Movie Gazette (Apr 12, 2003)

TURKEY SHOOT (1981)

Turkey Shite, more like!
Giovanni Dadomo, Time Out

VENOM (1981)
Venom spells box-office poison.
Paul Taylor, Time Out

WALK DON’T RUN (1966)
Too long, it seems to take its title too seriously.
Arthur Knight

WAKE UP AND LIVE (1937)
The title should be changed to Wake Up and Leave.
Walter Winchell

WAY UPSTREAM (1986)
Way offbeam
Brian Case, Time Out

WHAT'S THE WORST THAT COULD HAPPEN? (2001)
What's the Worst that Could Happen? A movie that answers its own title.
Maxim (May 2001)

WILD GEESE II
A right load of proper gander.
Anne Billson, Time Out


MUSIC

COLOR ME BADD
Color Me Beige more like.
Laura Lee-Davies, Time Out

ARK by The Animals
Ark is a good idea that should have stayed in dry dock.
David Fricke, Rolling Stone

BAD (1989) by Michael Jackson
Was only called Bad because there wasn’t enough room on the sleeve for Pathetic.
Prince

DISAPPOINTED
by Electronic
You will be.
Melody Maker (1992)

DON’T SAY THAT IT’S OVER by Azizi
That It’s Over.
Andy Cowan, Rage

FRANKIE VALLI IS THE WORD by Frankie Valli
In plain English, that word is garbage.
Dave Marsh, Rolling Stone

IS NOTHING SACRED? by Lords of the New Church
Is Nothing Sacred? is nothing special.
David Fricke, Rolling Stone

LIFE by Ricky Martin (2005)
Life seems destined for a speedy death.
Barry Walters, Rolling Stone (Oct 20, 2005)

LIKE A VIRGIN (1985)
by Madonna
Like hell.
Dave Hill

MORE, MORE, MORE (1993) by Bananarama
Less, lees, less, please.
Ray Douglas, Time Out

THE NAMELESS ONE (1993) by Wendy James
The Talentless One more like.
Jim Arundel, Melody Maker

PARTING SHOULD BE PAINLESS by Roger Daltrey
Parting with this album should not only be painless, but pleasurable.
Parke Puterbaugh, Rolling Stone

REMEMBER THE TIME (1992) by Michael Jackson
Remember the time when you used to make decent f***ing records?
Melody Maker (1992)

RETURN OF THE REAL (1996)
by Ice-T
Ice has covered this territory so often, he might as well have called this Regurgitation of the Rote.
Tom Sinclair, Entertainment Weekly

SIDEWALK by Icehouse
Most of Sidewalk is pedestrian.
J.D. Considine, Rolling Stone

STILL CRUISIN’ (1989) by The Beach Boys
Still Cruisin’ is still born.
Jimmy Guterman, Rolling Stone (1989)

TALK IS CHEAP (1988) by Keith Richard
Talk is cheap, and this album is almost as worthless.
Terry Staunton

WHERE ANGELS FEAR TO TREAD by Mink DeVille
Where talent fears to tread.
Kurt Loder, Rolling Stone

WHO’S THAT GIRL by Madonna
Who’s that girl? Who cares?
Alan Franck

WILD IN THE COUNTRY (1961) by Elvis Presley
About as wild as a glass of milk.
Geoff Brown, Time Out

YOU GOTTA BELIEVE (1992) by Marky Mark
You Gotta Believe? You wanna bet!
Rupert Howe, Select magazine


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