Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Movie Non-Review: Valkyrie

Normally, I'd go see a movie like "Valkyrie"; I like WWII movies, and I like murder conspiracy movies. In this particular case, however, I'm not planning on seeing it for one reason, and one reason only -- it stars Tom Cruise. In the previews, he looks so unsufferably bad that I'm convinced he's made a film that's about Tom Cruise being an "important actor", rather than an historical figure.

Are there any actors/actresses/directors who will make you avoid a movie you'd otherwise see?

(In defense of "Valkyrie", Dennis Mansfield did see it, and liked it.)


Blogger RM1(SS) (ret) said...

I generally can't stand Robin Williams (though I did like Mork and Mindy) and Bill Murray (though I absolutely loved Groundhog Day).

12/27/2008 9:29 PM

Blogger blunoz said...

I generally won't watch movies with Adam Sandler. There have been a few exceptions, but I just don't like his style.

12/27/2008 9:33 PM

Blogger Navy Blue Cougar said...

Keanu Reeves. I would normally run to see a movie like The Matrix, but it was only a few years ago that I saw the first one. I spent about the first 15 minutes trying to find my remote and then gave up and finished watching the movie. It was a pretty good movie, but it was good in spite of Reeves, not because of him.

12/27/2008 9:36 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I will never support anything with Tim Robbins, Sean Penn or Susan Sarandon due to their meddling opposition to the war. Also, I will never buy anything from the Dixie Chicks until they apologize.
I defended the country and all of them to have the right and privilege to speak their minds, however, I also have the right and privilege never to put another coin in their pockets.

That Damn Good Looking Aganger From Iowa

12/27/2008 9:47 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel the same way. I also like WWII movies, the more historically accurate the better. In this case, I'll wait till Valkyie comes out on HBO or Showtime next year. I'm hearing too many negative comments about it from people in life who know what the hell they are talking about. So, no point in spending $40.00 to see it in the AMC.

I don't have a problem with Tom Cruise, but I'm surprised as hell that he was picked to do a historical drama. The Valkyrie film trailers that I've seen, remind me more of the "Mission Impossible" movies...not a war film based on a true history tale in life.

As for Joel's 2nd question.
I can't stand Ben Stiller. His type of comedy is depressing as hell and boring.

Thanks, J.

12/27/2008 10:19 PM

Blogger Jarrod said...

Cruise is a drag on an otherwise superb cast. The audience can at least be thankful that he didn't affect a British accent to try and fit in.

12/27/2008 10:30 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reese Witherspoon. I think Sean Penn might be one, but I'm actually thinking that I just don't like the movies he's in, and that it's not necessarily him (there are lots of politically insufferable actors in Hollywood, but I still see their movies, so why wouldn't I his, if he ever made a movie I actually wanted to see). Scarlett Johansson tends to turn me off on a personal level, but movie-wise it might be her film choices too... And lately Tom Cruise, but only because he's going through a very unattractive movie-role mid-life crisis. He needs to lose the damned Porche and settle into the 4-door sedan (a Buick, maybe, if they're still around) he knows is waiting for him. So we'll just say definitely Reese Witherspoon.

12/27/2008 10:36 PM

Blogger Patty Wayne said...

Any Tom Cruise movie. His acting has just bored me since the first Mission Impossible.

Will Ferrell. If he has more than a bit part, like in Wedding Crashers, I'll pass.

12/27/2008 11:11 PM

Blogger reddog said...

Tom Hanks used to be good but not any more. Same with Mel Gibson.

Angelina Jolie was always terrible.

Chevy Chase is not funny.

Reese Witherspoon was great playing precocious adolescents. Now she plays witless adults.

12/28/2008 1:21 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Shakes the Clown" has Adam Sandler playing a part unlike any he has done since. Bob Goldthwaith as well. It is the Citizen Kane of alcoholic clown movies. (also has Robin Williams, and Florence Henderson)

12/28/2008 8:04 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am very positively impressed by the list of to-be-avoided actors here.

My "ditto" list of the insufferable: Robin Williams, Adam Sandler, Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, Ben Stiller and Will Ferrell.

I also do not like Tom Cruise for this portrayal, but would agree with others that it is the style of this particular movie that is most unacceptable.

Not helping: I've seen (and own) "Bonhoeffer," which was a much more interesting documentary of this attempt on Hitler's life, as told by way of the life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a young German theologian who -- unlike many others in the religious community -- "offered one of the first clear voices of resistance to Adolf Hitler." He, too, was a conspirator in the assasination attempt, and paid the price for failure.

"Bonhoeffer" includes great archival footage and tells a true story, not a dramatized one. I recommend it highly in any case, and certainly over "Valkyrie."

12/28/2008 9:07 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also don't like to give my money to politically offensive (to me) artists. I avoid Richard Gere, Michael J Fox and Bono.
2 ears

12/28/2008 1:32 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It looks like all of us have a good bead on who they don't care to see on the silver screen.

I will say that I partially disagree about Robin Williams. Now, I don't care for the movies he's been in, except for "Good Morning Vietnam" which was both heartfelt and funny as hell. But, he is an outstanding comedian when he's on stage. I can't help but laugh hard when he's doing a comedy tour. Maybe he could just stick with stand up comedy, it might be better for his career.


12/28/2008 1:56 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Same thoughts as you about Tom Cruise in "Valkyrie". Too much mission impossible linkage-baggage for me. That role demands an unknown-to-Americans German actor for that role. Kind of like Jergen Prochnow as the skipper in "Das Boot."

Reminds me of what the Director "Hunt for Red October" Learned after several days at sea on USS Blueback SS-581 for research prior to shooting. Can't "fake" submarine control room scenes with actors. He actually used real submariners for control room scenes on the "Dallas."

Cruise will probably make plenty off Valkyrie, however won't get my $$.

I'm tired of Al Pacino looking pissed-off and shouting all the time. I don't go to see his flicks anymore.

My two cents, and keep a zero bubble......


12/28/2008 2:16 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with you DBFTMC.
Jergen Prochnow would have done fine in this role and so would Kenneth Branagh.

I've heard that the Red October film used actual Submariners instead of simple actors for that film. I've also heard that was the exact opposite for Crimson Tide and U-571. The studios used regular actors for the last two.

As for Al Pacino, the last two of his flicks which I really enjoyed were, "Scent of a Woman" and "Any Given Sunday." However, I wasn't too happy with his performance in "Oceans 13". All he did in that one was, yell at and intimidate everyone around him as a casino owner. Hopefully, he'll learn to take a breath and relax in his future movie endeavors.

I'm starting to sound like Siskal & Eggbert huh?...Lol.

Thanks, J.

12/28/2008 3:26 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


Were you onboard Blueback when she visited Subic in the summer of 1980?

That boat used to hold regular card games in which some serious money changed hands.

WestPac was a different animal in those days and the B-girls sure tried to keep it that way.

12/28/2008 3:58 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's an idea, instead of sounding like bitter grumpy folks...and bemoaning the politics of "Hollywood", which is too easily & incorrectly painting all of "them" with the same brush...why don't you say which actors/actresses you *do* like & why? I have no idea why their politics should be any of your business.

You want the Dixie Chicks to apologize? Get real. You (we) all serve to protect their independant thinking & free speech, even if you don't agree with it. They have nothing to apologize for.

I find Tom Hanks and Sean Penn have a pretty amazing depth of work, and have been pretty good in most of their roles. Ditto Ed Norton, and Philip Seymour Hoffman. Robert Deniro & Gene Hackman & Al Pacino & Clint Eastwood normally alway provide good work. Check out Christian Bale's work as well. Morgan Freeman too. Next post -- the actresses...

12/28/2008 4:55 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just remember Jay, you asked for it.
Back in the day I used to have a real thing for Florence Henderson. I used to fantasize about her, me, 300 sq ft of plastic sheeting and a 5 gallon jug of 100 Degree Wesson Oil.
Hope that helps!

12/28/2008 5:17 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

To: Jay at 4:55 PM.

Hey Jay, you gotta consider the fact that Joel invited everyone here to state their own opinions of who they like and dislike regarding silver screen entertainment. Especially when we're spending our own money when deciding rather or not we want to see a specific movie in question.

Do you expect everyone here to keep their opinions to themselves? For the lot of us here who have spent a number of years being subject to the UCMJ throughout's a refreshing feeling to come to a place like this and be able to simply speak as we feel.

You just brought up the freedom of speech in your last. Not everyone in the world thinks as you do. Additionally, not everyone has the same views in life that you have. So what's the point of trying to tell everyone else here they are wrong in their stated opinions?

Thanks, J.

12/28/2008 7:06 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Jay at 4:55 PM:

As I said
“I defended the country and all of them to have the right and privilege to speak their minds, however, I also have the right and privilege never to put another coin in their pockets.”
It’s just my opinion. You’re welcome to yours. I don’t oppose what Natalie Maines said, just why, where and when she said it. The Dixie Chicks don’t have to apologize and I don’t have to give them any of my money. Apparently a lot of others think the same as they have tanked as a country act and their pitiful showing in the pop scene shows they won’t make much there.

Now, I'll move on.

That Damn Good Looking Aganger From Iowa

12/28/2008 11:34 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Before I went off to Boot camp, Pop told me to never get involved in a discussion about religion, politics or women. He shoulda added movie stars as well. Sheesh.

12/29/2008 4:43 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon, regarding serving on Blueback: Nope, I was on Barbel 70-75 then went to SubPac Staff until transfer to Fleet Reserve on November 30, 1977.

The B-Girls were in Squadron 1 and the same Division (until Divisions were abolished in early 70's) from early 60's until 1976. when USS Tiru SS-416 was Decommed in 75 decision was made to split up the B-Girls. Barbel remained in Pearl, Blueback went to San Diego and Bonefish went to Charleston SC.

As Squadron 1 boats their regular rotation was 6 months in WesPac and one year in Pearl. We would pass each other in-out Chop 7th Fleet.

Crews on all three boats were very close and there was a lot of crew swopping between the boats. Wardrooms moved frequently between the boats as the officers moved-up. Our reunions involve all three boat crews.

Keep a zero bubble......


12/29/2008 11:06 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any movie that Oliver Stone has anything to do with.

12/29/2008 11:51 AM

Blogger Unknown said...

My choice of movies have nothing to do with who is in it. In the past 10 years or so, I have seen two movies at the movie theater; Titanic and Pearl Harbor.

Didn't see any of them on opening night, more like weeks later at the dollar theater. (yes I am a cheap date.)

I would much rather spend my money on other things instead of the over priced movies feeding some whiny over paid actor!

12/29/2008 6:10 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any movie that director Uwe Boll makes...Even though they're campier than heck, I still couldn't watch a single one of them. And as for actor I'm going to get a lot of flack for this one, Kelsey Grammar...

12/29/2008 9:18 PM

Blogger 630-738 said...

I don't avoid movies based on the actors/actresses in them (I personally can't stand Barbara Streisand based on her politics, but I loved "Meet the Fockers", including her part as Ben Stiller's Mom). I avoid what I consider bad movies.

I believe "Valkyrie" falls into that category.

Jay-practice what you preach, mister.

12/30/2008 1:01 PM

Blogger bothenook said...

sean penn.

12/31/2008 12:23 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tom Cruise more often than not surprises me. He's a pretty good actor. However, I will wait to see this movie on the cheap.
Movies starring that more recent batch of non-funny Saturday Night Live crew are flat out terrible.

12/31/2008 3:59 AM

Blogger spero said...

Cruise picked the perfect vehicle here. Not for this crowd of dead-enders, of course, but for those who are interested in questions around what constitutes patriotism. Von Stauffenberg was a great hero and patriot, who committed treason against his government in the cause of his country. This kind of heroism is going to be lost on your crowd of neo-fascists. But you are right about one thing. The stupid shall surely be punished. Here it comes.

12/31/2008 10:05 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


If you really "understood and appreciated" the history of the valkyrie plot you would understand that TC is the wrong guy to play the role of Von Stauffenberg. That role demamded an unknown-to-American audience German actor.

Your way out of your league trying to address the issue of Patriotism and Service-to-Nation on this Blog. Take a hike.

My two cents, and keep a zero bubble....


1/01/2009 12:33 PM

Blogger Brine said...

"Cruise picked the perfect vehicle here. . . Von Stauffenberg was a great hero and patriot, who committed treason against his government in the cause of his country."

This may have been more to his colors about six months ago, but movies like this are usually very thinly venered political comintaries. I'm notgoing to spend $ to see the movie, but I'd love to hear thoughts on this.

1/01/2009 7:01 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your kind comments for Mr. Cruise have earned you my vote in the weblog awards. Keep up the fine work.
I'm not much of a movie fan, because nothing worth while seems to come out of Hollyweird any more.

1/07/2009 6:33 PM


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