BASEketball: Two childhood friends create a new sport called BASEketball, but have to ensure that corporate sponsors don’t ruin the league. This film is as funny as they come – everything from college humour, gross-outs, slapstick, sports and normal gags; every scene is crammed with throwaway jokes, both in the script and in the background – it’s truly a gag-a-minute. From the director of Airplane!, The Naked Gun, and writer of Kentucky Fried Movie – you would expect no less. It’s got a surprisingly high budget too; no expenses spared with sets, extras, and an impressive comedy cast. There are a couple of small issues – notably that it’s very American, with lots of US-based gags, stars and parodies that don’t export well. it’s also quite clean and timid, given that it stars the creators of South Park and several playboy playmates – you feel that someone was deliberately keeping this reasonably clean. Having watched this over 20 times as a kid, it’s still as enjoyable as an adult. BASEketball is one of my comedy benchmarks, with more laughs and gags per scene than any modern comedy could even dream about.
BASEketball League Teams
New Jersey Informants
San Francisco Ferries
San Antonio Defenders
RED: (Retired, Extremely Dangerous) A retired Black Ops soldier is targeted by a hit team, so he calls a favour on his old-time buddies to get to the bottom of it all. I guess the best thing about this newfangled trend of adapting the shit out of every comic ever made is that – on the whole – the source material is usually good, and abundant. Because of this, RED is watchable enough as the story predictably lurches forward, however the way it’s all presented on the big screen is nothing new – peppered with gratuitous fights, action and explosions. They must have known the story was ten-a-penny before they pulled in such a heavy-hitting cast: Malkovich steals every scene with his familiar oddball routine, and the only other person that turns in something good is the determined agent Karl Urban. Everyone else, including Bruce Willis, is on cruise control, and despite being OK, everyone seems more interested in making a quick buck than doing anything noteworthy. There’s a couple of ‘hostage humour’ laughs as Willis tries to win over a girl that looks half his age, and the overall script is decent. Between the massive cast and unusually low certificate for an ation/spy flick (all violence and most swear words are edited out or covered up) this is clearly all about getting as many bums on as many seats as possible. RED nowhere near as good as the sum of its parts – and ends up being nothing more than a Bourne/Salt/A-Team re-hash, with marginally more interesting than average geriatric characters.