Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan

Rumor Has It …


The reviews really sucked, but the idea was so good we had to see for ourselves … to our sorrow.

Premise: A woman begins to suspect that her family is the Robinsons from the movie The Graduate. She’s right. The places you could go from there are almost endless, and this movie manages to pick only the stupid ones. Elaine is dead. Wrong! Dumb idea! Was Katherine Ross not available … or did she read the script? The original idea was to have Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft reprise their roles, but she died and he was unavailable (maybe a white lie?), so they cast Shirley MacLaine as Mrs. Robinson (the only smart thing they did) and Kevin Costner as Benjamin. Then they proceeded to screw it up completely. Jennifer Anniston was all wrong. Why couldn’t she have been Benjamin’s age in the original, and a bit more like him? Clueless, earnest, wondering what she was going to do with her life? Then we could get a reprise of that famous shot under Mrs. Robinson’s leg, only it’s the girl under Benjamin’s leg: “Mr. Braddock, you’re trying to seduce me. … aren’t you?” Here, we have Ben as a billionaire who made his bucks in the new Internet. Wrong! Why couldn’t he have made his money in … plastic! (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you should see The Graduate again.)

Rob Reiner is beginning to look like a sad case. Maybe even a has-been. He had a wonderful streak there in the late ’80s and early ’90s, with Stand by Me, The Princess Bride, When Harry Met Sally, Misery, and A Few Good Men. Then he made North, a movie so bad that critics were almost frothing at the mouth. (I haven’t seen it; not even the previews looked funny.) It’s like that movie cursed him. He hasn’t made a decent movie since. Whatever he may be, Rob Reiner is no Mike Nichols, and Ted Griffin, who wrote this piece of shit, is no Buck Henry.

I’ll tell you the movie I’d like to have seen. In Robert Altman’s masterpiece The Player, Buck Henry is pitching a movie called The Graduate II. It’s 25 years later and Benjamin and Elaine have moved in with Mrs. Robinson. And she has a fatal disease …