Review of Paris Can Wait

After viewing the trailer for Paris Can Wait, I thought it looked like a fun, comedic, road movie that might offer some sophistication to an otherwise banal genre of movie themes. What could be better than cruising the French countryside in a classic Peugeot convertible with a beautiful woman?

Paris Can Wait disappointed on absolutely every possible level.

The dialog is incredibly weak and painful to hear, consisting of trite conversation with simplistic questions one would never ask another person if you actually were interested in them or even respected them.

The endless rambling of the French gentleman, who really comes off as nothing more than a cheesy philanderer intent on bedding the wife of his boss by drowning her in an endless sea of food, distraction, and banal complements.  Any woman with an ounce of self-respect would have shut him down immediately and jumped on the train to Paris. He’s an aging, self-important, predatory creep with far too little charisma to make one suffer his presence.

Alec Baldwin literally phones in one of his worst performances to date, and he does have a long list to beat. It’s like he showed up drunk and hung over to the shoots,  just slurred his lines in one take, grabbed the paycheck, and then flew off.

Eleanor Coppola, who wrote and directed this abysmal movie, saved her worst work for the ending, which was absolutely insulting to watch. In the scene, Diane Lane receives a cliché box of chocolates from our sleazy, French Lothario, along with a personal note that he will continue to dog her all the way to California, and her response is to bite a chocolate and wink at the camera. When they sat around wondering how they should end the movie, you know that the last two words from them were, “fuck it.”

It’s a perfectly horrible ending to a perfectly horrible movie.

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Are Turo Renters Insane or Just Plain Stupid?

When I first heard about Turo, I thought, “Nobody could possibly be dumb enough to rent their car out to a stranger. Don’t these idiots know what people do with rental cars?”

I regularly rent cars for trips when I don’t want to put the miles on my own car, or when I’m on the far end of an aircraft flight. Considering the surprisingly low costs of renting cars, it frequently turns out cheaper to rent than to use my own car.

I also have little regard for the car, either. Hey, it’s a rental!

Haven’t you always wanted to smoke the tires off a car? Here’s your chance. Going to LA? This guy will rent you his Mercedes Benz SL Roadster for a mere $114/day.  This car has a base price well north of $80,000, and he’s willing to let some unknown from the internet take it for a few days for chump change? I love the renter’s benign, cheery feedback on the rental. You’d almost think they actually treated it with something other than total disdain.

How about this nitwit? $300/day lets you at his Ferrari California. Remember that scene in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off? Yeah, that happens every time.

So, if you decide to rent out your beloved BMW because you can’t afford the payments, you’ll find out that you’ve made a huge mistake. Every person, and I mean every, single person who rents it from you, is going to beat the living crap out of it. They’re going to redline that thing more times in 2 days then you would in 10 years of ownership.

Turo states that you’re covered when you rent your car. Sure, you’re covered when the damage is visible, but a 48 hour beating session may not be even remotely visible. There’s a reason why former rentals are not exactly in the recommended used car purchase list. When the odometer reads 30,000, the engine has the equivalent of 150,000 miles on it. Only a buffoon buys a former rental.

Whether or not Turo actually survives as a business remains to be seen, but while it’s still a going concern, I highly recommend getting out there and having a little fun with some sucker’s pride and joy.

Beating on a Bimmer!

Modern Automotive Safety

Though style and beauty have declined from the early days of the automobile, at least safety has increased dramatically.

Since the 1950s, we’ve seen incredible advances in automotive safety, such as anti-lock brakes, air-bags, crumple zones, shoulder belts, collapsible steering columns, and a trove of other items that have saved countless lives over the years. The modern auto is an amazing amalgamation of technology and intelligent, thoughtful design.

One item that would seem counter intuitive is the idea that a light, modern automobile would be able to withstand the impact of a 1950s era land yacht. You would think that a solid old clunker would plow right through a new compact car as if it were constructed of cardboard.

Wrong.

This video shows exactly how the modern safety improvements would have spared the life of the compact car driver and the opposite lack of devices and design would lead to the death of the old car driver. It’s surprising how one sided the results are in this Consumer Reports crash test.

Buckle up folks!