Warning: The following rant contains spoilers to several movies. Though I am probably the last person in the free world to have seen these movies, the possibility exists that you may be even later to the gate than I. In any case, you have been warned!
Of late, I’ve been catching up on all of the movies I’ve missed over the past few months. I’ve had baths that were deeper than The Bucket List (to borrow from a character in the movie). Henry Pool Is Here was surprisingly good, with no easy answers. Kung Fu Panda and Space Chimps were both great for their in-jokes (especially the dead-on impression of Al Gore in the latter). And Star Trek only mostly sucked (pretty scenery, fair acting, plot holes large enough to fly a spaceship through ).
Now I’m just back from G I Joe, and I want my money back. Why? Because it demonstrates just how low the appetite for movies has gone . Looking at the movie objectively, there are a few things that seem designed to insult your intelligence. I’m not speaking of the sort of “suspension of disbelief” that you have to use to watch, say, Star Wars ; I speak of full blown, no holds barred, the director screaming in your face “This whole movie is a great big piece of shit (yeah!) but I’m the guy singing and your the jerk who paid to find out (of yeah, oh yeah, oh yeah!) [a]”.
What bothered me so much wasn’t the fact that the US President had a distinctly British accent. And it wasn’t that they had five or six flashbacks (it was hard to keep track) to tell us why the characters were so screwed up. And the obligatory herky-jerky cinematography, designed to conceal that they ran out of money for CGI , was only mostly annoying.
No, what got my goat at the end was the way the evil guys decided to get rid of those pesky submarines that were plaguing their immense underwater lair . Picture this – hundreds of tiny submarines that were dispatched from Egypt and make their way to somewhere near Greenland in under ten minutes  and are now making hash of the secret Cobra base. What is a villain to do? Why (and I’m not making this up), he blows up the ice pack, sending bits and pieces of iceberg raining down on the GI Joe subs. And that, to quote Robinson, is where my suspension of disbelief bust a mainspring. It appears to have passed the attention of Mr. Sommers and his entire CGI crew that ice freakin’ floats! So breaking up the ice pack does exactly nothing.
Which is what the movie ended up doing for me. I don’t mind a stupid movie . And I don’t mind plot holes, per se, if they help to move the plot along . What I do mind are stupid plot holes that could have been patched by anyone who bothered to look at the glass of ice water that they were drinking.
So avoid GI Joe at all costs, even if it means watching Star Trek again. Though it isn’t the worst movie I’ve ever seen , it is certainly the worst movie to come out so far this summer.
 OK, so the Romulan captain gets sucked back in time 154 years and never once thinks to send a note to the Vulcans saying “Hey, guys – this star is going to blow up soon. Do us all a favor and leave a week earlier or Romulus bites the big one”? They spend 25 years lurking about and never once impinge on the Federation, except to destroy Kirk’s life? And what’s with their magical lightning field? I thought Prince Barin shut that thing off before Flash started his run!
 As has been said before, we are in a race to the bottom and both sides are winning.
 “Stop the film! Things don’t go ‘vroom’ in space!” [a]
 And that the director has no earthly idea of how to stage a good fight scene. Compare the fights in Captain Blood and Pirates of the Caribbean if you doubt me! Sadly, this style of faux cinema verite is likely to be regarded as this decade’s signature, just as saturated colors were for the 70’s and long shots were for the 80’s.
 Three points on that one: (i) If you can afford to build a huge underwater lair, then you are too rich to be stupid enough to want world domination [b]; (ii) If you build a huge lair anywhere on Earth, it is going to get noticed – do you think we don’t have damn good maps of the Arctic circle by now?; and (iii) If you are going to build an underwater lair, why build freaking huge missile silos to the surface – haven’t you ever heard of the Polaris, Poseidon, or Trident?
 Another major problem with modern movies – they have no sense of scale. It takes days to move a sub from one place to another. And it takes hours to get from Moscow to DC, even in a plane traveling Mach 5 (1.2 hours to be exact), not minutes. So there is no way the Ripcord [c] could have gotten both missiles.
 I have Space Truckers in my collection, and have watched it more than once.
 That would be Starship Troopers. Not only did they get the basic philosophy of the book wrong, they didn’t even get the easy parts right, like fighting with combat suits or having an enemy that made sense (bugs that send flaming farts across the galaxy? Sounds like Verhoeven has issues…).
[a] Geek points for the reference!
[b] Have you any idea what the headaches of that are?
[c] Which, amusingly enough, is the name of a leather bar in Houston.