Wild Hogs

Artykuł pochodzi z pisma "Guardian"

Wild Hogs

Peter Bradshaw
Friday April 13, 2007
The Guardian

Looking at the actors on the poster outside the cinema - John Travolta, William H Macy, Tim Allen and Martin Lawrence - triggers a kind of awestruck anticipation. They are four faces on a Mount Rushmore of rubbishness. Which one of these Hollywood middleweights is going to be the most utterly abysmal? Which is going to phone in the most inept performance? It's like King Kong versus Godzilla versus Alien versus Predator: all four creatures lined up on the starting blocks for the 100m Terrible Acting event.
Well, it's a photo-finish, but by a nose, by the briefest sliver of proboscis. It is John Travolta who is first among equals in this mind-sodomisingly mediocre family comedy from Walt Disney. It's a film that has none the less elicited some deafening ker-ching at the US box office, and its staggering success has even promised to revive the career of Ray Liotta, who has a crudely and unfunnily written supporting role as an evil biker. That can't be bad, of course, but couldn't fate have chosen a worthier film to boost this estimable actor's profile? And it's sad to see Macy on auto-pilot like this.
Travolta and the three other beta-males play a quartet of adorably normal guys who were kind of wild in their 20s but have now settled down to dull, prosperous lives in the 'burbs. Their only way of letting off steam is their silly little bikers' club, the Wild Hogs. Every weekend or so, the guys pull some leather jackets over their paunches, get on their machines and roar around the surrounding countryside for some male bonding. There's a cringeworthy opening sequence showing the non-fearsome foursome cruising along the main street, fraternally touching fists - and then nerdy William H Macy loses control of his bike and hilariously ploughs up a grassy verge. Does this happen all the time?
Then one of them - for the life of me, I can't quite remember which - gets seriously depressed about his life, and his crisis plunges the gang into a group menopause. The only cure is for them all to take a remedial road trip on their bikes to confront their masculine demons.
There's no reason why this shouldn't make for good entertainment, and I have happy memories of Billy Crystal and the late Bruno Kirby in City Slickers, about townies indulging in manly yet therapeutic cow-punching. That had a decent script; this doesn't.
What happens is that the Hogs get picked on by some real, mean bikers - led by Liotta - and they wind up defending a blameless small town against these nasty outlaws in a laboured kind of sub-Seven Samurai situation. It really is very Disneyfied, and the fight scenes in this town look worryingly like a staged stunt display in some Disney theme park or Universal Studios tour-type tourist attraction. And there is the very dispiriting spectacle of Ray Liotta and, in cameo, Peter Fonda parodying their bad-guy personas for the benefit of the emasculated heroes in an emasculated film. Not an easy ride.

abysmal- denny, beznadziejny
awestruck- przejęty lękiem
beta-male- mężczyzna pozbawiony urody, atrakcyjności, pieniędzy, statusu
boost- poprawiac, windować, podnosić
'burbs- suburbs- przedmieścia, peryferie
by a nose- o glowę
cameo- drobna rola wielkiego aktora, perełka aktorska
cringeworthy- wstydliwy, zawstydzający, żenujący
crudely- prymitywnie, zgrzebnie
indulge (in)- oddawać się (czemuś), pozwalać sobie na
inept- nieumiejętny, niekompetentny
ker-ching- dochodowy, rentowny (pot.)
nerdy- kujonowaty
paunch- brzuszek (u mężczyzny)
phone in- zadzwonic do programu na żywo
proboscis- trąbka (owada), trąba (słonia)
prosperous- szczęśliwy, pomyślny
sliver- odłamek, cząsteczka
staggering- niewiarygodny, oszałamiający
trigger- wywoływać, powodować
utterly- zupełnie, całkowicie


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