Wrong! It was a great big fucking pile of suck.
But, as we were apt to do at that point in our lives, we turned a negative into a positive and started our own episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Screw everyone else in the theater! We were gonna get our money's worth, dammit!
I think our favorite part was the ending. And not just for the obvious "oh thank God it's finally over" element. And not the pre-ending climax fight/motorcycle duel. That was just ridiculous. No, I'm talking about the last scene right before the credits. Tom Cruise has beaten all the bad guys and given Thandie Newton the antidote to the virus, and they have a moment together at a park somewhere on Sydney harbor, I believe.
We like to call it...John Woo's Happy Place.
That's not the best shot of it, unfortunately. I couldn't find a video clip of it either. But believe me when I say that it was far, far, far more ridiculous than it appears in that screen shot up there. There were tons of balloons, clowns walking by on stilts, midgets on tricycles (or not), jugglers and, of course, doves. See that kid on the far right? He was having a frisbee catch with his friend who was about five feet away from him. They were almost handing the frisbee to each other, they were so close. Seriously. It's like John Woo closed his eyes and thought about Heaven and he tried to cram it all into about 200 square feet. It was obviously his Happy Place.
What brought this up after ten long years? Glad you asked. Since Netflix so graciously added all of Joss Whedon's titles to their Instant Streaming catalog, I've been re-watching episodes of Buffy and Angel. I've been especially interested in watching Buffy Seasons 4-7 and Angel Seasons 1-4 in the correct order as outlined by nerdlier nerds than I.
So last night I got to Episode 3 of Season 1 of Angel, and I was surprised and delighted to see that Joss Whedon has his very own Happy Place.
There isn't as much going on in that ridiculously small and shady patch of beach as John Woo's Happy Place, but there is enough to make me, and apparently Joss, very happy. The lifeguard standing there on the left...ready for action. A father and son fishing off the rocks. Some kids digging in the sand. Maybe a barbecue somewhere in the background. No balloons or jugglers, sadly. And none of them were aware of the screaming and fighting and vampires that happened just dozens of feet away on and beneath the pier. But it's definitely Whedon's Happy Place.
It's an incredibly lazy bit of film-making on both of their parts. Trying to capture a happy and idyllic scene as a way of wrapping up a storyline. Yet it's so cheesy and obvious that I kinda dig it. So I guess it works on some of us.
Happy, happy...joy, joy!!!
___________________________________________________Note: Remember to play the Bug-Eyed Trivia Challenge every day. It's your happy place.