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Watching Bad Movies: The Paperboy

Lee Daniels is a talented Director. He's proven so with films like Precious and The Butler, as well as the hit TV Show Empire. He wrote and directed the film Paperboy. It's obvious he's a much better director than writer because Paperboy is a prime example of why people stopped reading the newspaper and canceled their subscription. I'm not sure if Macy Gray and David Oyelowo were really good actors or Zac Efron and Matthew McConaughey are just horrible actors. You know what, it's probably a little bit of both. Oyelowo didn't do anything spectacular in his role. He also wasn't horrible and confused about what kind of character he was going to play. Macy Gray on the otherhand too that role as a maid and just slaughtered it. She didn't care about that job but what were they going to do? Fire her? Well, they did but she held in there.

The plot revolves around Jack(Efron), sort of. It's a coming of age story for Jack but mostly revolves around him following his brother Ward (McConaughey). Ward is trying to get a prisoner released from prison after claims he's innocent. Ward brings along his partner Yardly (Oyelowo) and a woman named Charlotte that falls in love with inmates through letters. Jack falls in love with Charlotte. She pees on him when he gets stung by a jellyfish. That's about as close as they get.

Along the way it's revealed Ward is gay. He invites two guys to a hotel room for rough sex. They decide to just rape him instead. No charges were filed because Ward didn't want anyone to know he was gay. Yardly goes ahead and published the article but Jack had discovered the inmate was actually guilty. Jack tries to get tough and it's revealed Yardly is actually straight out the hood. He pretends to be British because a black man can't get a job otherwise. He also reveals Ward probably didn't call the cops when he was raped because he's a rapist too. He would get drunk and force himself on Yardly. Yardly didn't have a choice but to go along with it or get fired. In return for keeping his mouth shut he got a few promotions.

The prisoner gets released and moves to the swamp, taking Charlotte with him. He's a rapist and a woman beater, he's also guilty. Charlotte sends Jack letters letting him know. On the day of their father's wedding Ward and Jack go to the swamp to save her. Ward and Charlotte get killed. Jack escapes.

If you notice I didn't mention the maid Anita played by Macy Gray. She didn't have any important role in the film. Her role wasn't necessary. Why is she the only memorable character in this film? Lee Daniels better stick to directing. Don't ruin Empire by deciding to write. I also get it was the time and everyone was throwing around the words "nigger" and "nigga" but damn. How many times can you fit it into the plot. The first time Jack said it was in a fight with Yardly then it was everyday vocabulary.

There's not much good in this movie. Charlotte's sassy black BMV stereotypical roommate was funny with quotes like "I keep telling you them inmates ain't shit." Macy Gray was great. The film should have been called Macy Gray Reacts Just Like The Viewer While Watching Crazy People And Makes The Best Of A Garbage Script.

You can hear Darrell on the CP Time and Powerbomb Jutsu podcasts. He also plays classic arcade games on The Cabinet
Darrell S.

Hey, I write stuff, a lot of different stuff, that's all.


  1. I tried watching this movie and fell asleep TWICE.

    1. I honestly took a break halfway through because it was so dull

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