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issue no.
  thursday
160
  january 15
2004
c o n t e n t s
 
RED Reviews
 
 
'Torque' Runs Out of Gas, Explodes, Cuts to T&A
Opening this Weekend
 

It's a Wonderful Ken: RED Locates Cool-Lookin' Ken Just in Time for the Holidays
 
 
 

 theReel
‘Torque’ Runs Out of Gas, Explodes, Cuts to T&A
 
by Jordan Scrivner
 
  “Is that a tire iron in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?” this scene from “Torque” seems to ask, coming
right before a big explosion and right after another superfluous shot of scantily clad women.

“Torque”
Warner Bros.
Directed by Joseph Kahn
Written by Matt Johnson
Produced by Brad Luff and Neal H. Moritz
Starring Martin Henderson, Ice Cube, Monet Mazur, Jay Hernandez, Jaime Pressly, Matt Schulze, Adam Scott and Fredro Starr
Rated PG-13

(out of four)

When my Dad saw the movie “Speed 2: Cruise Control” (watching bad movies runs in the family), he described a scene where the handsome and brave hero is on a motorcycle chasing some nameless villain. The villain is pure evil—something about using an ice cream truck to lure little kiddies into his evil clutches—and it is imperative that the good guy catches the bad guy as fast as possible. As he is in hot pursuit of the baddie, our hero pops a wheelie.

No one in his right mind would ever do this, my father explained, as popping a wheelie on a motorcycle makes you go a lot slower, and its purpose is entirely to show off, not to save little kids’ lives. What is the hero thinking?

I was reminded of this little fact while watching “Torque.” The whole movie is like one giant popped wheelie—made entirely to show off. Yeah, it looks neat, but it makes you go a lot slower— little kids are dying. What are the filmmakers thinking?

Mercifully, “Torque” is a movie that ends in 90 minutes. But this is 90 minutes of inane dialogue, shoddy editing and downright bizarre storytelling. Ninety minutes of your life you’ve lost and will never get back again.

“Torque” centers around the our hero, a Tarzanesque biker named Cary Ford (Martin Henderson) who just got back from laying low in Thailand to duck some drug-trafficking scam. He returns home to L.A. to find his girlfriend (Monet Mazur) hating his guts and his archnemesis Henry (Matt Schulze), the guy who set him up in the first place, setting him up again. Henry frames Ford (Henry Ford, get it?) to take the fall in the murder of Junior, the younger brother of Trey (Ice Cube), leader of the Reapers motorcycle gang. Meanwhile, a 12-year-old FBI agent named McPherson is gunning for Ford in order to solve the Case of the Stolen Drugs.

So the chase is on, as everyone is after Ford while Ford and his cronies are out to clear his name. Meanwhile, there’s a whole shitload of T&A shots, XBox-style explosions, dozens of product placement shots (aren’t you at least supposed to pretend like you’re not doing that on purpose?) and laughable, LAUGHABLE action sequences. If you gave the editors of Maxim magazine some film equipment, a couple million dollars, some corporate logos and dropped their collective I.Q. by 100 points, you would get the movie “Torque.”

Maybe I would have liked this movie if I were a completely different person, with different standards of human decency. I will admit that the whole reason I had an interest in seeing this movie at all is because the trailer featured a shot of a biker babe on a bike, wearing all black leather and flashing a butterfly knife. That was cool. But the 90 minutes of pure, unadulterated bullshit I had to suffer through in order to get to that one shot was sooo not worth it. Oh, and that biker babe turned out to be the villain’s girlfriend, China (Jaime Pressly). She also, being a female villain in a Hollywood turd movie, turned out to be bisexual. Could you possibly get any more evil?

I hated this movie. I hated every stupid plot twist and every over-acted word that came out of Ice Cube’s lips. If a character came up to Ice Cube while he was balancing his checkbook, Ice Cube would have said something like, “Yo, bitch, I be balancin’ mah checkbook, NIGGAH! Where mah dawgz at? Rowrow!!!” I hated the movie’s attempts at self-deprecating “ironic” humor. Characters disappeared and reappeared for seemingly no reason. The girls were skanky, even for me, and the action scenes were edited so haphazardly, it would have made director McG groan.

At least last year’s “The Rundown” was stupid in a fun way. Other than comedian Dane Cook’s cameo, “Torque” is just plain stupid.

And now, in order to make the movie a bit more fun for you all, I leave you with some drinking games you can play at home while watching “Torque.”

Take a swig of beer every time you see a corporate logo.

Take a swig of beer every time characters are magically able to hear each other over the roar of motorcycle engines and gunshots.

Take two swigs of beer every time the movie makes a lame attempt at irony.

Chug a beer every time a character or an object transcends time and space and/or disappears for the rest of the movie.

Chug a beer every time a character reappears for seemingly no reason at all.

Take a shot every time you see Jaime Pressly lick her lips.

Punch yourself in the face for every minute you wasted watching this lame movie.

jordan@red-mag.com


 
 

 

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