Mars Attacks! is based upon a series of Topps trading cards released in the early 1960s. And it certainly pays homage to its inspiration.
Unfortunately, its also a narrative mess that fails to get the most out of its stacked cast. Mars Attacks! features an all-star lineup. It’s got Jack Nicholson in two roles, Jim Brown, Joe Don Baker, Annette Bening, Glenn Close, Michael J. Fox, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Pierce Brosnan, just to name a few.
And, yes, their presence is felt, but outside of Nicholson, who’s terrific as a Las Vegas Huckster and the President, they all have nothing to do.
That is the great failing of Mars Attacks! It wants to do a lot without really doing anything at all. It’s all just empty spectacle—little green CGI men conquering a hapless earth.
Hence why it received middling to negative reviews—56% on Rotten Tomatoes with 86 of them—and was beheaded like an annoying chihuahua at the box office. On a budget of $100 million, Mars Attacks! raked in just north of $101 million worldwide.
The losses on that are enough to make a financier’s head explode like a martian listening to Slim Whitman.
Now, sit back, disintegrate a Double County Double IPA from Dry County Brewing, and do not trust the martians! I, the Thunderous Wizard (@WriterTLK), Chumpzilla, Capt. Cash, and Bling Blake are optimistic about still having two out of the three branches of government. That ain’t bad!
This Week’s Segments:
- Introduction/Plot Breakdown – Nice planet. We’ll take it! (00:00)
- Lingering Questions – After a word from our brothers in beer at Hop Nation USA, we discuss assess why this movie flopped. (36:14)
- The “They Blew Up Congress!” Trivia Challenge – The Double Turn Podcast pins a red skeleton, and then Chumpzilla challenges the field to trivia about the movie. (1:07:12)
- Recommendations – We offer our picks for the week and next up: We finish “Hops and All I Want for Christmas Flops” with 1989’s blatant Nintendo commercial, The Wizard! (1:17:09)