Friday, August 10, 2007

You have got to be kidding

I've been a big fan of AMC, the American Movie Classics channel, for a long time. True, I pine for the days when they actually showed classic films--the old black and white gems from the 30s and 40s--but they still show some good flicks from time to time. And their original programming isn't bad either--I liked the first season of Hustle and I've seen a couple episodes of Mad Men, a show set on Madison Avenue in the 1950s. You would think the channel airing a show about the advertising game would have some concept of what makes a good ad. You would be wrong. Whoever is doing AMC's promos needs to watch their own series.

The tag line for the August promo is "Long live cool" or something like that. They show some iconic images--Clint Eastwood in his poncho, cigarillo hanging from his lips; Steve McQueen in Bullit; Robert Redford in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid; Sharon Stone in The Quick and the Dead. Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper in Easy Rider; Jack Nicholson in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Ummm...what? Yes, AMC is comparing that horrible Sharon Stone/Gene Hackman travesty of a "western" to some of the classic cool movies of the 60s and 70s. I mean, come on! There is no doubting the star power of that film. Hackman (in one of his worst roles ever,) Russell Crow, Leonardo DiCaprio--even Stone (quick, name a decent Sharon Stone movie besides Basic Instinct. Can't be done.) But the movie is terrible. There have been some good westerns made in the last few decades (Silverado, Unforgiven, Open Range) but this is not one of them. Come on AMC, no matter how you edit that ad, trying to compare The Quick and the Dead to those other films is just slapping lipstick on a pig.

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