Monday, April 29, 2013

F This Movie! - Pain & Gain

Patrick and Adam Riske are huge.

Download this episode here. (36.2 MB)

Email F This Movie! at fthismoviepodcast(at)

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Also discussed this episode: Identity Thief (2013); To Live and Die in L.A. (1985); Mud (2013); The Haunted World of El Superbeasto (2009); Rolling Vengeance (1987); Ride With the Devil (1999)


  1. Patrick, I volunteer to be your movie accountability partner from afar when it comes to Michael Bay movies. I haven't been to the theater to see one of his movies since Armageddon. There's little chance that Transformers 4 will be anything but garbage.

    I almost want to see Pain and Gain for what sounds like a great Dwayne Johnson performance. I like him a lot. I don't know if he's worth the price of admission and enduring the other more frustrating parts of the movie, though.

    1. Also, Adam speaks of Mud, which I am quite interested to see. I hear good things about Matthew McConaughey's performance, at least.

  2. Hey John - McConaughey is good in Mud. He's trying something a little different - i.e. he's sort of naive and not the smooth operator he usually is. The real stand out is the lead kid actor. The McConaughey character is more of a supporting role but he's the bigger star (between him and the kid) so the studio is trying to make it seem like he's the lead.

    1. Interesting. Even the featured "consensus" review on Rotten Tomatoes identifies his character as "the title role." That seems misguiding if it's not actually the case. Oh well, I still usually like him in things as long as it's not a stupid romantic comedy like Failure to Launch (not that romantic comedies are stupid, just the type he's been in), and he has an interesting character to play, i.e.: Dazed and Confused, Bernie, Magic Mike, etc.

  3. Hey, I resent the all-encompassing 'WE ALL hate Michael Bay and WE ALL go see his movies' statements. It lumps the likes of me and Kathy (who need Rifftrax back-up to even consider seeing one) with the likes of you and Adam that clearly get something out of seeing Michael Bay movies. Whether it's the vicarious thrill of realizing he's still a soulless hack or the way he stacks SFX/cool camera shots on top of one another, on a primal basic movie lover level you need Bay. I don't, so please, no all-encompassing statements about our diverse little movie-loving "community." Does this make me Pierce? :-)

    After "Armageddon" and "Pearl Harbor" I learned my lesson and haven't given Bay any of my money, time or attention. I guess I have to thank you guys for taking one for the team. The mostly-OK reviews were giving me pause that Bay may have actually done something here worth seeing, but your thoughts confirm what was on the "Pain & Gain" trailers: Bay's passion project says things about him as a person that make me want to see his stuff even less than I already wanted. And if not seeing a Bay movie means I can't talk about the man's work then great. How 'bout those Knicks? You think the Bulls will go all the way?

    My next-to-last NEW-TO-ME TRILOGY:

    How do you know if your movie is full of shit? You're swimming in it! Pier Paolo Pasolini's THE DECAMERON (1971) on Blu-ray.

    Because a poke in the ass with a branding iron never hurt anyone... right? Pasolini's THE CANTERBURY TALES (1972) on Blu-ray.

    Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves... will not be seen raping anyone tonight (or any other night). Pasolini's gorgeous and magical ARABIAN NIGHTS (1974)

    How do you spell "coma" in Russian? Andrey Tarkovski's 205-minute epic ANDREI RUBLEV (1966) in 35mm at Anthology Film Archives.


    I was really going to do Bay's "Transformers" trilogy (before it becomes a "quadrilogy") but, after this weekend's Bay thread and listening to this week's podcast, FUCK MICHAEL BAY. He's not worth killing the few brain cells I have left. Krzysztof Kieslowski's THREE COLORS TRILOGY for the win.

    1. I can't speak for Patrick but I'm a Sith. I'm supposed to deal in absolutes. Or in this case all-encompassing statements.

      It's just my opinion that people shouldn't slam other people's work if you don't see it for yourself. It would be like me saying Alex Mack is the worst when I just caught a few episodes that didn't do it for me.

      Re: Your Bulls question. My heart says no and my head says no. The Knicks won't do it either.

    2. OK, touche on "Alex Mack" since the wrong episode could give the perception that it's just another dumb Nickelodeon kids show (particularly from the 1st and 2nd seasons). And my main beef was primarily with Patrick saying 'WE ALL' hate and watch Bay's movies. I don't, neither does Kathy and neither are the thousands of people that keep NOT going to see the "Transformers" sequels, which keep making less and less money with each new installment.

      But do I really need to see all Michael Bay movies when they're far less ambitious, easy to categorize (ADD-edited blockbusters) and get plenty of coverage and reviews that all pretty much state that he's still doing the same things he was guilty of in the 90's and early 2000's? I've seen four of his movies (from "Bad Boys" to "Pearl Harbor") and I wish I could forget three of them. I was on the edge of seeing three more, but don't your own words and Patrick's in the podcast state this man has nothing but contempt for his audience? Why shouldn't I have contempt for Michael Bay (or Adam Sandler, or Jason Friedberg & Aaron Seltzer) until there's overwhelming consensus that he's improved or done something actually worth seeing? You and Patrick didn't actually recommend we should see "Pain & Gain" in the podcast (I didn't hear it), do you?

      And just to be clear, the Bulls and the Knicks are the Toronto and Mississippi lacrosse teams that are about the compete in the NHL Playoffs. Right? ;-P

    3. I usually try and ignore these things, but this is ridiculous. Is there another person who honestly thought I meant "every single person" goes to see Michael Bay movies? We get it. You're a snowflake. Enough fake outrage.

    4. Woah, woah, WOAH! ..... So, what am I supposed to be thinking now? I'm confused.

    5. ^^^ That I'm white, tender and melt when touched by human hands I guess. :-P

  4. I know it wasn't meant to be the take home message of the piece but I am strangely very interested in seeing this movie based on your discussion. Almost like a half assed attempt at intelligent social commentary through the lens of Michael Bay may actually have some interesting elements to it. I also masturbate with a studded glove on backwards.

    As an aside I also finally gut around to watching Sleepwalk with me. Thank You Erika and everyone else who subsequently also recommended it. It was great, we really enjoyed it. Another movie I wouldn't have come across if not for this site.

  5. Patrick, you're an optimist. It's both your curse and your blessing. It's a curse because you end up wading through a whole bunch of crap you would rather not have seen. It's a blessing because every now and again you uncover a real gem that otherwise you would never have considered.

    Me, I'm a pessimist. It saves me from a ton of bad movies. But from time to time I have to ask myself, what have I missed out on?

    1. Maybe I am! I wouldn't consider myself one in ANY other aspect of my life, but I guess I am pretty optimistic when it comes to movies.

      Oddly enough, there's not many movies I wish I hadn't seen. Even when I don't like something, worst case scenario is that I've seen another movie.

      Don't consider yourself a pessimist! Maybe...cautious?

  6. Hiya. Not being a huge fan of Bay's movies, even the Bad Boys ones, I was surprised to find I enjoyed this one a lot more, though I think a lot of it is Bay finally finding a project where all of his excesses I don't like in his work find their proper expression in the warped protagonists.

    I will say that I think Bay is in on the joke, at least somewhat, as reflected by the Ed Harris character. The fact that he feels more like a real person makes him a jarring presence in the story, which I think is intentional, right down to his wife being attractive without looking like a supermodel, completely contrary to Bay's usual M.O.

    But there are two elements that I think bear out how important this character is to the tone of the film. One is the fact that whenever he's onscreen, Bay's usual kinetic visual style calms down into something resembling normality. There's also the scene where Harris is masquerading as a gym client for Wahlberg and we see how much better prepared and smarter he is deceiving Wahlberg than Wahlberg is at deceiving anyone else during his scheming. While everyone is giving their narration and trying to make this 'their' story, by making clear how much smarter Harris is we know instinctively that he's the guy whose commentary on the situation is most trustworthy.

    On the less intentional side, I keep wondering if the Lugo character does accidentally become something of a stand-in for Bay himself: a guy who excels in superficial qualities but is frustrated that he's not more respected or perceived as being more than he is. Or perhaps I am just Room 237ing (I love that this is rapidly becoming a verb in film discussion circles) on this part?