Speed 2 Cruise Control Sandra Bullock

Sandy Passage

5 Too Rotten to Miss Sandra Bullock Movies

Catch the "too rotten to miss movie" Speed 2: Cruise Control Friday at 8P on IFC.

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Sandra Bullock has won an Oscar, a Blockbuster Entertainment Award (yes, that used to be a thing) and a Kid’s Choice Award. You don’t just stumble into success like that. You work for it. And Sandra Bullock works. Sometimes you get gems like While You Were Sleeping or The Heat, and sometimes you get the clunkers on this list.

With IFC and Rotten Tomatoes celebrating the “too rotten to miss” movie Speed 2: Cruise Control this Friday at 8P, we thought we’d look back at five Sandra Bullock movies that she probably wishes could be expunged from her IMDB record.

5. All About Steve

Sandra Bullock is so inherently likeable, she can make you fall in love with almost any character she plays. Almost. Mary Horowitz, the crossword puzzle writer with a pet hamster as a best friend, would prove to be her Waterloo. Less a character than a collection of quirks right out of the hack screenwriter handbook, Mary stomps through her movie, alienating every character she comes in contact with like a “manic pixie dreamgirl” on meth act.

The flimsy plot centers around Mary becoming obsessed with an uninterested man (Bradley Cooper), basically browbeating him (and his early ’00s spiky ‘do) into falling in love with her. Bullock famously won a Golden Raspberry for Worst Actress in All About Steve and then an Oscar for The Blind Side the next day, which has to be some sort of record. Currently sitting at 7% on Rotten Tomatoes, All About Steve has become a favorite among fans of star-studded trainwrecks.


4. Premonition

A low rent knockoff of other low rent movies, the 2007 spookfest Premonition (8% on Rotten Tomatoes!) has the feeling of a project everyone made with a shrug. In fact, Bullock had already made a movie about a woman trapped in two different time periods — the Keanu Reeves weepfest The Lake House, making this project all the more bewildering.

Was she just desperate to work with Nip/Tuck eyebrow plucker Julian McMahon? Or make a movie that feels like a fake trailer from another, better movie? If only Sandy had a premonition before signing on to this stinker…


3. Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous

Miss Congeniality 2
Warner Bros.

The first Miss Congeniality was a pitch perfect vehicle for Sandra’s talents. Its fish-out-of-water story of a FBI agent who goes undercover on the beauty pageant circuit was a bit predictable, but the script’s humor and amiable cast helped make it a surprise hit.

The sagging sequel, which scored only 15% on Rotten Tomatoes, assumes we love the character of FBI Agent Gracie Hart (Bullock) so much, we want to follow her on all her wacky adventures. Ditching the beauty pageant world, Hart has a new job, new partner and a new set of problems. The comedy is much broader and campier, and the film has little reason to exist beyond giving William Shatner an easy paycheck. Still, The Shat is always worth a couple chuckles.


2. The Net

Irwin Winkler, the legendary producer of Rocky and Goodfellas, took a big swing approach to predicting the future in this 1995 thriller, trying to tackle how the newfangled Information Superhighway was changing society and potentially ruining our lives.

Unfortunately, Winkler and the screenwriters used the framework of a laughably predictable conspiracy thriller, joining fellow ’90s tech thrillers Disclosure and Hackers in a sub-genre that looks as dated today as “The Rachel” haircut. If you like your thrillers filled with Times New Roman font and action at the speed of a 28.8Kbps modem, this relic from the AOL chatroom era might be for you.


1. Speed 2: Cruise Control

Speed 2
20th Century Fox/IFC Giphy

Removing the urgency of the iconic original, Speed 2: Cruise Control sets the action on a runaway cruise ship, ignoring the true horror of annoying tourists and backed up toilets for the smooth sailing terror of a boat going a little too fast.

Following the diminishing returns model of the Die Hard franchise, girl next door Annie (Bullock) was now delivering lines about how unlucky she was to find herself in the middle of yet another improbable terrorist attack. With Willem Dafoe hamming it up in the generic villain role, this is an example of bloated ’90s blockbuster-dom that is almost soothing in its rotten-ness.

Set sail with Speed 2: Cruise Control during IFC’s Rotten Fridays! 

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Hard Out

Comedy From The Closet

Janice and Jeffrey Available Now On IFC's Comedy Crib

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She’s been referred to as “the love child of Amy Sedaris and Tracy Ullman,” and he’s a self-described “Italian who knows how to cook a great spaghetti alla carbonara.” They’re Mollie Merkel and Matteo Lane, prolific indie comedians who blended their robust creative juices to bring us the new Comedy Crib series Janice and Jeffrey. Mollie and Matteo took time to answer our probing questions about their series and themselves. Here’s a taste.

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IFC: How would you describe Janice and Jeffrey to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Mollie & Matteo: Janice and Jeffrey is about a married couple experiencing intimacy issues but who don’t have a clue it’s because they are gay. Their oblivion makes them even more endearing.  Their total lack of awareness provides for a buffet of comedy.

IFC: What’s your origin story? How did you two people meet and how long have you been working together?

Mollie: We met at a dive bar in Wrigley Field Chicago. It was a show called Entertaining Julie… It was a cool variety scene with lots of talented people. I was doing Janice one night and Matteo was doing an impression of Liza Minnelli. We sort of just fell in love with each other’s… ACT! Matteo made the first move and told me how much he loved Janice and I drove home feeling like I just met someone really special.

IFC: How would Janice describe Jeffrey?

Mollie: “He can paint, cook homemade Bolognese, and sing Opera. Not to mention he has a great body. He makes me feel empowered and free. He doesn’t suffocate me with attention so our love has room to breath.”

IFC: How would Jeffrey describe Janice?

Matteo: “Like a Ford. Built to last.”

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Mollie & Matteo: Our current political world is mirroring and reflecting this belief that homosexuality is wrong. So what better time for satire. Everyone is so pro gay and equal rights, which is of course what we want, too. But no one is looking at middle America and people actually in the closet. No one is saying, hey this is really painful and tragic, and sitting with that. Having compassion but providing the desperate relief of laughter…This seemed like the healthiest, best way to “fight” the gay rights “fight”.

IFC: Hummus is hilarious. Why is it so funny?

Mollie: It just seems like something people take really seriously, which is funny to me. I started to see it in a lot of lesbians’ refrigerators at a time. It’s like observing a lesbian in a comfortable shoe. It’s a language we speak. Pass the Hummus. Turn on the Indigo Girls would ya?

See the whole season of Janice and Jeffrey right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Die Hard Dads

Inspiration For Die Hard Dads

Die Hard is on IFC all Father's Day Long

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection, GIPHY

Yippee ki-yay, everybody! It’s time to celebrate the those most literal of mother-effers: dads!

And just in case the title of this post left anything to the imagination, IFC is giving dads balls-to-the-wall ’80s treatment with a glorious marathon of action trailblazer Die Hard.

There are so many things we could say about Die Hard. We could talk about how it was comedian Bruce Willis’s first foray into action flicks, or Alan Rickman’s big screen debut. But dads don’t give a sh!t about that stuff.

No, dads just want to fantasize that they could be deathproof quip factory John McClane in their own mundane lives. So while you celebrate the fathers in your life, consider how John McClane would respond to these traditional “dad” moments…

Wedding Toasts

Dads always struggle to find the right words of welcome to extend to new family. John McClane, on the other hand, is the master of inclusivity.
Die Hard wedding

Using Public Restrooms

While nine out of ten dads would rather die than use a disgusting public bathroom, McClane isn’t bothered one bit. So long as he can fit a bloody foot in the sink, he’s G2G.
Die Hard restroom

Awkward Dancing

Because every dad needs a signature move.
Die Hard dance

Writing Thank You Notes

It can be hard for dads to express gratitude. Not only can McClane articulate his thanks, he makes it feel personal.
Die Hard thank you

Valentine’s Day

How would John McClane say “I heart you” in a way that ain’t cliche? The image speaks for itself.
Die Hard valentines

Shopping

The only thing most dads hate more than shopping is fielding eleventh-hour phone calls with additional items for the list. But does McClane throw a typical man-tantrum? Nope. He finds the words to express his feelings like a goddam adult.
Die Hard thank you

Last Minute Errands

John McClane knows when a fight isn’t worth fighting.
Die Hard errands

Sneaking Out Of The Office Early

What is this, high school? Make a real exit, dads.
Die Hard office

Think you or your dad could stand to be more like Bruce? Role model fodder abounds in the Die Hard marathon all Father’s Day long on IFC.

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Founding Farters

Know Your Nerd History

Revenge of the Nerds is on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Everett Collection, GIFs via Giphy

That we live in the heyday of nerds is no hot secret. Scientists are celebrities, musicians are robots and late night hosts can recite every word of the Silmarillion. It’s too easy to think that it’s always been this way. But the truth is we owe much to our nerd forebearers who toiled through the jock-filled ’80s so that we might take over the world.

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Our humble beginnings are perhaps best captured in iconic ’80s romp Revenge of the Nerds. Like the founding fathers of our Country, the titular nerds rose above their circumstances to culturally pave the way for every Colbert and deGrasse Tyson that we know and love today.

To make sure you’re in the know about our very important cultural roots, here’s a quick download of the vengeful nerds without whom our shameful stereotypes might never have evolved.

Lewis Skolnick

The George Washington of nerds whose unflappable optimism – even in the face of humiliating self-awareness – basically gave birth to the Geek Pride movement.

Gilbert Lowe

OK, this guy is wet blanket, but an important wet blanket. Think Aaron Burr to Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton. His glass-mostly-empty attitude is a galvanizing force for Lewis. Who knows if Lewis could have kept up his optimism without Lowe’s Debbie-Downer outlook?

Arnold Poindexter

A music nerd who, after a soft start (inside joke, you’ll get it later), came out of his shell and let his passion lead instead of his anxiety. If you played an instrument (specifically, electric violin), and you were a nerd, this was your patron saint.

Booger

A sex-loving, blunt-smoking, nose-picking guitar hero. If you don’t think he sounds like a classic nerd, you’re absolutely right. And that’s the whole point. Along with Lamar, he simultaneously expanded the definition of nerd and gave pre-existing nerds a twisted sort of cred by association.

Lamar Latrell

Black, gay, and a crazy good breakdancer. In other words, a total groundbreaker. He proved to the world that nerds don’t have a single mold, but are simply outcasts waiting for their moment.

Ogre

Exceedingly stupid, this dumbass was monumental because he (in a sequel) leaves the jocks to become a nerd. Totally unheard of back then. Now all jocks are basically nerds.

Well, there they are. Never forget that we stand on their shoulders.

Revenge of the Nerds is on IFC all month long.

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