Friday, April 17, 2009


I know I said I was out for the week, but I'm sorry, I just had to say something...

How badly do you think Matthew Perry is regretting having done 17 Again on this opening day, when he’s reading the reviews, all of which, to one degree or another, by inescapable necessity, must compare him to his 17-year-old self, Zac Efron? Here’s one of the funniest, from Mick LaSalle:

“If you want to illustrate the acid rain that 20 years can pour down onto a human face, just show Zac Efron and then make us believe that life has turned him into Matthew Perry. Oh, that beautiful boy - oh, that lumpy-faced man. What happened? Failure and disappointment? Self-hatred? Grand-scale spiritual error? We're just scratching the surface here. For Efron to turn into Perry in a mere two decades would require something more drastic, like sitting down every morning to a breakfast of hot, steaming toxic waste.”

I liked “Grand-scale spiritual error?” Jeez! Stephanie Zacharek is characteristically more circumspect, but no less humorous:

"In movie terms, the Zac Efron/Matthew Perry dichotomy is a cruel bait and switch. There's something a little punishing about the way the movie practically snaps at us, `You don't expect youthful beauty to last forever, do you?'"

The Mrs. is taking my girls to squeal over Zac tonight. Myself, I'll just sit at home, lick my 48-year-old wounds and reassure myself with the bitter balm that the only reason I haven't had so far to fall myself is that there was never anyone even slightly resembling Zac Efron in my biological past! Salud to low standards admirably maintained!

See you all next week!



Sharon said...

First again! Whoo-hoo!

Dare I say that I laughed harder at those two comments than I did during the entirety of Observe and Report?

I know its fluff, but I'm sorely tempted to go and see this movie. It could be innocuous fun.

Dennis Cozzalio said...

Yeah, I think it looks like it could be fun. Certainly, we boys who recently appreciated 13 Going On 30 with Jennifer Garner have no business making fun of this movie based solely on the presence of Zac Efron.

As for Perry, he had to know it was coming. It was one of the first things I thought about when I saw the trailer ages ago. I usually don't go in for these kinds of comparisons, but jeez, how can this one be avoided? And those lines are hilarious and pointed. It is interesting, though, to speculate how gingerly we'd all be treating the subject if, say, Vanessa Hudgens was in a new movie in which she grew up to be (insert name of weather-beaten 40-ish actress here). I daresay we all might be a little kinder (and the filmmakers might try a little harder to make her less doughy and downtrodden). But then we'd also be having less fun, and after all those seasons of Friends, well, I don't wanna say "deserve," but...

Greg said...

You know who could play Zac at an older age? Cillian Murphy.

Neil Sarver said...

Not to comment from a perspective of "dreaminess", but looking at that picture, their features are remarkably similar. Yes, Matthew Perry has a much, much larger forehead, actual human eyebrows and a less than actual nose, but otherwise, their cheekbones, mouth, chin, etc. are all pretty dang similar. Yes, I can see that, too, that none of this adds up to explaining Perry's lack of that certain undefinable something that would make him "dreamy", but frankly, I think that's lost with age more often than no, no matter what.

That leaves only the question of the forehead in my mind.

Anonymous said...

Salud to low standards admirably maintained!I'm gonna say this to my wife next time she wonders why I don't lose some weight. Then I'm gonna say "Dennis Cozzalio made me say it." She's good with flames.

Unknown said...

"a breakfast of hot, steaming toxic waste" is especially tragic, given that we know what 17-year old Matthew Perry looked like; he was already acting at the time.

In fact, at that age, he starred in "Second Chance," a TV series about an older man reincarnated as his younger self. Perry was the younger self, natch.

nomad said...

if Zac Efron plays his cards right, he will be one of the most sought after actors in Hollywood

The Rush Blog said...

I find this whole thing sad . . . and a prime example of how shallow and youth oriented this society is.

That movie reviewers would go to such lengths to bash an actor for aging over the years, instead of maintaining a youthful exterior is pretty sick. Did they expect Matthew Perry to remain looking 25 years or younger forever?

This is fucking sad.

Sharon said...

Well, I did see it and it was definitely innocuous. Unfortunately, I didn't think it was very good. They couldn't even get the timeline correct. The highlight (yes, there was one) was Tom Lennon's loony performance as the older version of Zac/Matthew's best friend. The rest of the audience seemed to like it well enough, based upon the smatter of applause at the end. I wish the filmmakers had put as much effort into making the script coherent as they did in making Zac look pretty.

I also saw State of Play on the same day and enjoyed it quite a lot. This despite my general antipathy towards Russell Crowe and the fact that he's in almost every scene in the movie. On the other hand, I think Ben Affleck is an underrated performer and is quite good here. Also, I like it when a thriller is engrossing enough to keep me from thinking ahead and this one delivered on that point for me.

Now I must get back to work on my homework to avoid earning demerits from Professor Peabody.

Anonymous said...

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