A lot of people are apologizing lately.
In politics, in business, at the local playground, saying "I'm sorry" is de rigueur, not to mention a great way to get out of paying hefty fines and/or going to the clink.
Among those saying "my bad" these days: Donald Rumsfeld, the CIA (same thing) Martha Stewart, Enron (same thing) and the editors of such distinguished, if non-fact-based, journals as The New York Times and USA Today aka McPaper.
Well, I am not above apologizing -- especially if it gets me the kind of attention these sorry artists get. As they say here in the p.r. capital of the Western world:
No news is news without you in it.
And I must say, in scouring my columns and reviews since joining the staff here at Movieweb.com (also known as "Black Monday") I indeed have a quite a few things to apologize for. This type of self-examination is certainly good for the soul anyway -- and may even lead to a lucrative book deal. So in the spirit of reconciliation with the powers-that-be here in Hollywood, and elsewhere, allow me to publicly flay myself:
- I would like to apologize for referring to the Olsen twins as "a mindless two-headed zombie." I'd just like to say, by way of explanation, that I was very stressed that day, having been sold a bad batch of Mystic Mints by the Girl Scout troop down the street and may have been "projecting." But I have no excuse for referring to their movie New York Minute as a good reason for those teenagers who paid to see it to "jump head first off a two-story doghouse." For this I apologize to Mr. and Mrs. Fred Clark of Akron, Ohio, their son, Bobby, and their Rotweiller, Mr. Giggles, whom I am glad to report are both recovering nicely.
- While we're on the subject of personal attacks, I'd also like to apologize to Michael Eisner -- especially since it looks like he might survive as head of Disney. As someone who still has a few unsold screenplays in his trunk (please send a SASE for a four-color catalogue) I cannot rule Disney out completely, and piling on Mr. Eisner in his time of need is no way to endear myself. I'd like to say that Mr. Eisner has always seemed to be a very nice man, one might even call him a handsome man, and certainly feared by all. On the other hand I will not take back what I said about Mike Ovitz who really is a bastard.
- My apologies are not limited to "stars" and movie executives. I'd also like to apologize to one of my readers, Ms. Juanita Appleby of Paramus, NJ. After some unfortunate remarks about New Jersey, I got into a little email tussle with Juanita, what with her defending the Garden State and me so prone to using it as a punch line. It got a little heated, I admit, and yes, Juanita I was the one who sent you the five pound jar of live bees, for which I apologize to you and your customers at the Curl Up And Dye Hair Salon. I especially apologize for marking the package "Candy."
- I would also like to apologize to the producers of Van Helsing and its fans. After repeated warnings to the media at the screening of Van Helsing not to reveal "the surprise ending" of this film, I did, and wrote right there in my column the secret that producers did not want anyone to know -- namely that it stank. I'd also like to apologize to VH star Kate Beckinsdale for my description of her costume. In hindsight, calling Ms. Beckinsdale "a ten pound knockwurst in a five pound leotard" was, to say the least, inappropriate.
- And on the subject of making observations about the physical attributes of movie stars, let me just say that it won't happen again. I will not again repeat, for instance, that Bruce Willis's shaved head is "larger than Sputnik" a theme I repeated in reference to Jennifer Lopez's bottom which I described as "bigger than a Buick Skylark" and to an extent when describing Angelina Jolie's lips as being "like what would happen if Mick Jagger and the Michelin Man married and had a child." For this, I am very sorry.
- And finally, I would like to say I am truly sorry for some of the flat-out errors I've made reviewing films. Trust me, when you see movie after movie, it's just a big blur after awhile. So if I confuse Troy and Man On Fire, as I did in my May 12th column, suggesting that Denzel Washington looks great in a leather skirt and sandals, you'll just have to forgive me. Yes, I have referred to Mathew Perry as "that guy on Will & Grace" and confused Julianne Moore with Pia Zadora. So sue me. What I mean by that is, I'm very, very sorry -- in a legally binding way, one hopes. And once and for all let me clarify that I do know the difference between Pierce Brosnan and Timothy Dalton, although I'm not sure exactly what that difference is. Ooops!
Sorry. Very, very sorry.