Sunday, August 23, 2009

99. In The Mix

It's 8 am on a friday morning. I woke up roughly an hour ago to the title sequence of "The Man With One Red Shoe" playing on my laptop, The 80's movie in which Tom Hanks plays a classical violinist who is falsely 'bugged' due to a confusion leading him to be perceived as a terrorist. Yes it's a comedy..

"In The Mix" 23 November 2005

Tagline : "Everyone Wants A Piece Of The Action."

Headaches and back aches aside, the next film on the list is Ron Underwood's 2005 return to directing, "In The Mix". Self proclaimed Crime Romantic Comedy Caper starring Usher as the lead role, Sloan from "Entourage" (Emmanuelle Chriqui, or as my girlfriend might know her as, the slutty teacher from season two of Gossip Girl) as the female lead, and what i'm going to assume is the 'weight' of this movie, actor Chazz Palminteri from The Usual Suspects.

As always, I have to delve into the directors past, and it seems. This time. I need to bow down and pay some respects.

Ron Underwood wrote and directed "Tremors".

I feel almost obliged to just end everything here. Give him the benefit of the doubt.. it's not as if he particularly had anything to do with the sequels either. So no reputation dents are to suffice there.
He also directed "Mighty Joe Young" which would be his final feature film before he started directing odd episodes of "Monk", "Boston Legal" and "Ugly Betty".

I wonder what prompted the return to cinema? Was the script too good to turn down? Maybe.

I should add (for comical and also incidental purposes) that in front of me I have Usher's Patented Body Lotion.
My girlfriend works at a magazine where such things are left un-wanted (can you even imagine!?) so as a joke/lovely sentiment she took it for me.
The thing is, it's honestly the best lotion i've ever used, it's incredible. Of course. Why wouldn't it be? It's the equivalent of Justin Timberlake breath mints being the best in the world.

Plot : It's always a real sign when not even the wikipedia page for a movie has the plot written out.
Anyway., the basic premise of "In The Mix" is that a famous DJ (played by Usher) named DJ Darrel (really?) accidentally saves a mobster, as his payment, he then has to look after the mobsters daughter (I smell 'Bodyguard'?), Sloan from 'Entourage'. (Some payment!!)

The funniest thing is, I know that after this movie came out and got completely obliterated, Usher decided to take on the role of Billy Flynn in 'Chicago', as a way of proving his worth again. There must be nothing worse than being literally the best in one field, for a long time, then going back to where you actually started from, and being completely obliterated by critics because of it.

Anyway, on with the show, let me just get my box of ritz first.

Analysis : I wish I could some how explain what the title sequence music is.. i really wish I could. I know that in this movie's IMDB under genre it does also list "Music", obviously after "Crime" and "Comedy", but before "Romance".

It sounds like "Fruity Loops" samples! This movie was made in 2005, hadn't Usher already dropped "Yeah"! by that point? I don't understand!!!!! Ok, i'll actually press play now..

Ok, so i've had to pause it, this is faster than I paused "Chairman Of The Board". The reason, i've paused it, is because over the top of the "Lionsgate" multicoloured Helvetica logo, a child like female south london voice has stated for me to "Make Way For The S.O.VEEEEEEE."
Ladies and Gentlemen .. Lady Soverign.

I have this thing in movies, where I can tell who's a villain or who's a gangster by quite how bad/clear their skin is.

1 minute 9 seconds in, Lady Soverign is instructing everyone in the club to get tipsy, and this 'dude' is taking it as a literal instructions. WHERE THE HELL IS DJ DARREL?!!?

Found him.

Usher's first line of the movie... "OH, Where Brooklyn At?" So I guess the movie's set in New York, I just assumed it took place in the kind of town where "She's All That" or "Can't Hardly Wait" took place, but logistically, this movie is about "Gangsters"... (Ellipse Ellipse...)

I wish you could see quite how on form DJ Darrel is right now.."Ya'll ready for this?" No, i'm really not! But i'm sure these guys are!

I was wondering who the overactive "Str8 Clownin'" black dude would be in this movie..

Ok, sorry.. i've only got to 2:49 of this movie... i'll digress..
It really feels like the 90's in this club.. maybe it's a 'throwback' party..
Overactive Black Dude has just stated to Usher how psyched he is for the "Fly Honeys" in the club tonight. Obviously Overactive Black Dude has a high pitched voice, akin to Chris Tucker, Chris Rock, e.t.c... oh, by the way. These are the "fly honeys" in question.

Is this movie rascist? I'm wondering.. seriously, it's like a 101 in the worst of ebonics.
Oh, just as I said that, this guy turned up.. I don't know if this strengthens or weakens my case..

I'm so glad he just said "Fo Shizzle".
I think my "Ritz" are playing up.
I can't do this.. please, please, no more.. WHAT!?!?
I literally took my eyes from the screen for 4 seconds... and now..

"Oh Darrel!"

"The babysitter fell asleep watching "G-String Divas'"... I actually quite like that line.

Wait wait wait, ok, so what's just happened is DJ Darrel met a girl in a club, takes her home, this young girl who was being babysat, turns up and says.."What happened to Pamela?"
Then the girl DJ Darrel took home, gets angry, and leaves... ok, just making sure.. glad to know there are some standards still left in the world.. I should add that up until this point Ushers acting is as solid as his designer stubble, and by solid i mean wooden.

Scrolling transitions between scenes make my life worth living.

"I'm trying to get my own studio going, like Atlantic Records, back in the day."

Hold on, where's the designer stubble gone?!!?

Hi Storm.

"Daddy, I missed you soo much".

Jesus, fucking christ... ok, so the moment, in which DJ Darrell saves the mobster's life just happened.
Literally, it consisted of, Usher staring aimlessly into space, which we're then shown is in fact at a car pulling up outside, in slow motion, with "serious" music playing over the top of the "dance" music...then the gun being pulled out from the car window, and DJ Darrell screaming.. well, saying.. "Gun." before leaping (falling) in front of the Mobster boss, taking the hit.

Life, saved.
I almost wish (for many reasons) this was the end of this movie. Perhaps it's a documentary on the danger of taking Corporate Dj gigs.. the final still of said documentary would be this.

And a caption would appear over the top proclaiming "Stick To What You Know Kid."
Luckily, there's another hour and twenty minutes left of this movie.

This guy (real name Matt Gerald, I had to look him up after watching this movie), my new favourite character. He attacks his words with the true venom of a stereotypical New York Italian Gangster middle man--- Leather Jacket + Semi Religious hand gestures = Cinematic God.
(P.S his name is Jackie..)

"You know how you celebrate after getting shot..go to the strip club, everybody knows that!" - Overactive High Pitched Black Dude.

I'm sticking to my "Racist Movie" Theory...

When are these fucking kids going to fall in love already..

Ok, i've decided I need some backup.. so i've stopped watching this on my laptop, and decided to watch it on the living room DVD player with aid from my room mate Chris, (honorable mention, it was Chris' idea to actually do this blog.. thanks alot... )

In the break from switching systems, I went to the store across the road to get some "Maximum Draino" to unblock our toilet.. again, the list of metaphors are endless.

You'll be pleased to know that Usher has now been accepted as "Part of the family".. this current scene, 10 minutes long, is SO offensive..

Let me attempt to explain part of it.
Usher now needs to get "New Threads" if he's going to become Sloan from Entourages bodyguard.

Que countless culture clashes involving Usher and the mafia tailor.

1. "What up holmes?" Usher slaps the hand of Tailor as he puts it out for a handskahe.

2. Tailor goes down to measure Ushers pants "WOAH, hold on there, you better tell a brotha before you go around messing with his junk.."

3. Tailor responds, "Junk? this is the finest material"..e.t.c.e.t.c.e.t.c.e.t.c....

I think that Ron Underwood had an agenda with 90's ebonics, he then had to wait 10 years to finally take his revenge, and with it, he knew he could take down Usher a notch or two also.. this must be the case, that would explain the constant hip hop-erisms of this white kid from earlier, as a mocking side note to everyone involved in this farce.
Undercover Sasha Baron Cohen like intentions, hopefully...

Sloan is doing some Tai Chi... Usher has to participate, of course... to her dismay, but alas, he is her bodyguard..

Sloan's friend.. "Who's the new guy?"

Sloan... "Friend of the family I got stuck with."

Sloan's friend... "I wouldn't mind getting stuck with that!"

The next half an hour are literally situations like that, where Sloan is annoyed at having to spend time with him, and all her friends are completely in love with him.
A lot of situations evolve into some Justin Long in "He's just not that into you" date guru type situation.

"Have a bite of my pot-sticker.." Usher bites. The girls just love him I guess! It is that easy.

Some "Meet Joe Black" shit nearly just unfolded in the rain, For a DJ, Usher sure knows how to save lives (last night a dj e.t.c..) Unfortunately though, Jackie is watching.. and does not trust Usher.

I'm on team Jackie.

Hold on, what about his DJ jobs?

Usher and Jackie are facing off...

Jackie just called him an Eggplant.

An Eggplant.


An Eggplant.

Guess that was the final straw, he's back to Djing again.

Oh, i spoke to soon. POOL SCENE ANYONE!?
What is he thinking..if Jackie see's him..

I don't think i've ever seen two actors with less of a chemistry, ever. EVER. It's ridiculous, as if they are both using this as their vehicles, in all senses of the term.

Ok, more racism! I swear!!!!

Usher's been asked to show Sloan and her 'stuffy' fiance is favourite place to eat.

Obviously it's a fried chicken joint in the hood complete with cop car sirens..

HOLY CRAP! Look who he bumps into there!! The girl from earlier, who he met in the club.. oh you've forgotten? Well just as well every line she ends her sentence with is " the club".
Involving such starters as "Unfinished business," "When are you back..." "Ever since I saw you.." and "I'm gonna head back, so I can get...".

Chris raised a great point, maybe Underwood isn't racist, he's just avidly trying NOT to be... urgh.

So they're kissing, and I can't help thinking what a dog Usher is, and what a slut Sloan is (slutty teacher from Gossip Girl).
I mean, her fiance isn't a bad person. He's actually a nice guy, has done nothing wrong. She was just with him, left him, and now is hooking up with Usher.
I hope to god Jackie kicks his ass!

I can't do this anymore.
I'm going to drink my coconut water until the end of this movie..

I can't handle the insane racial boundaries being crossed..

Usher - we have macaroni and cheese
Sloan - oh we eat that with sauce
Usher - so you like it?
Sloan - yeah it ain't bad. Yeah we've had stuff like this at home... can i come to the club?
Usher - the club? my club, oh you won't like that...

What the fuck is happening!?!? Macaroni and cheese? Isn't that an all american past-time!?

Well anyway, just as well they're at the club now.

Sloan - Dance with me?
Usher - I can't dance

Oh shut the fuck up. Just shut, the fuck, UP.

I'm actually getting angry now, I can't even be motivated to take pictures from my phone.


SHIT!! at last!
Jackie, just turned up at the club! "Looks like someone's got jungle fever..." Pulls out gun.

"He's got a gun!!!!!"

Oh, they ran away so it's ok.

I don't even know what's happening anymore. Honestly I don't, this is over. They fall in love, the end. I'll update this if ANYTHING else happens.

Chris just said my exact sentiment.
"Now I get why this movie is rated so badly, because it's actually starting to piss me off."
I'm soo angry I can't even finish my coconut water.
Especially now this god awful 7 minute sex scene is happening.

Kill Me.

My Thoughts On This Movie Summed Up In One Screen Grab :

EDIT : Holy Crap! Jackie was the bad guy all along!!!!

Shame he dies by a falling Disco Ball.

Usher : "If growing up in the hood is so dangerous, how is it I only get shot by white people."

My Room Mate Chris : "If I hadn't just bought this TV I would punch it."

Ok, I keep trying to end this. But we've just put on the special features, there's a documentary for the making of titled "25 Days and not a minute more".
They shot the whole movie in 25 days.

And that's my final thought.


  1. Love both reviews very much! Can't wait to read more reviews. Hope this goes well for you!

  2. I look forward to following your blog as you suffer through all these movies so we don't have to. Good luck!

  3. This may be the best review I have ever read. I have a tradition of watching terrible films, it's puts the rest in perspective. I might have to invest in this one now, it looks truly abysmal.