Friday, September 12, 2008

Great Moments in Terrible Filmmaking: The Covenant

The latest installment in The Common Man's Great Moments in Terrible Filmmaking asks the question: What would happen if douchebags could do magic? The answer, it turns out is not very interesting. They'd continue to be douchebags, going to parties, macking on girls, and generally being obnoxious. It's just that they'd do magic to be even more unbearable, by doing trick pool shots, or making a girl's car start for her, or using their abilities to make their car levitate so that the cops won't arrest them for underage drinking.

The plot centers around four kids at an elite New England prep school, the Sons of Ipswich, who are secretly descended from Salem witches and have to power to totes do magic, like, whenever they want as long as they keep it a secret. They rule over their school with a benevolent iron fist, loved by all the womens and both hated and revered by the mens. And OMG, they totally are in trouble when it looks like one of them is using their power for evil, rather than for douchebaggery.

It's important to note that this movie didn't have to be terrible. Shows like Buffy and Charmed have been able to at least make magic seem hot, if not awesome (as if you'd turn down the chance to make some magic with Alyson Hannigan, Rose McGowan, or Alyssa Milano). But the characters are so unbelievable shallow that it's impossible to root for them to do anything but die horribly in the most embarrassing and humbling way possible.

Sadly, there's not nearly enough of that, as the movie devolves into an obvious whodunnit, with a big supernatural showdown at the end that is largely fought with big, clear balls of energy. Not real exciting.

Worse, the soundtrack is abrasive and uniform; it's all hard rock, "we're like a badass Nickleback" crap, and the film's almost uniformly black. Even though the dialogue is hilariously stilted and heavy on the exposition, and the acting is hammy, the look and the sound of the film simply get in the way of enjoying how horrible it is. Instead, you're holding your ears and wondering why one of the Sons of Ipswich doesn't use his magic to turn down the background levels.

If your an emo teenager, you will enjoy this movie. If you are anyone else, sadly, it's not even worth your time. There are far better bad movies to watch that won't offend your senses, and The Common Man will be back soon so you don't have to sift through the crap to find the treasures.


Chris said...

I think even emo teenagers would call that movie crap.

The Common Man said...

Boy, you'd hope so, but in The Common Man's search for images, he came across a junior in high school who listed it, Transformers, and She's the Man as some of her favorite movies. It makes The Common Man weep for the future, Chris. Will no one take responsibility for the future of America and American cinema?

But thank you for commenting. The Common Man appreciates your presence and looks forward to checking out your geeky cauldron.