Angry Letters: Channing Tatum, ‘Talladega Nights,’ life in general

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We have a backlog of Angry Letters to sort through, so put on your asbestos gloves and protective goggles and let’s get to reading!

First a quick one from someone who used the form on the E-mail Eric page. He marked “general” as the subject, so I don’t know what his letter is in response to. In the “name” field, he put “SNIDERHATER.” For “e-mail address,” he put “sniderhater@yahoo.com.” (I checked; this is not a real e-mail address, sadly.) He writes:

Try to talk yourself out of this…

YOU’RE A [nickname for RICHARD]!

SNIDERHATER makes a lot of good points here and I will not attempt to refute them. Sure, he’s an anonymous coward — I may be a Richard, but at least I sign my name to my work and tell people how to contact me — but he’s an anonymous coward who speaks the truth. I am cut to the quick. Touché, SNIDERHATER. Touché.

The stupidity of this next writer was affirmed before I even read her letter: She had sent the e-mail not through my e-mail page, but through the “Ask Eric Stuff” page, which is quite clearly labeled as a place that is ONLY for non-serious questions that you intend as setups for “Snide Remarks” jokes. If you have an ACTUAL comment or question, the “Ask Eric Stuff” page is not the place to send it. There’s not even a spot on the “Ask Eric Stuff” page for you to include your e-mail address, so how would I reply?

Anyway, the person signed her name “Gertrude Irvingale,” which clearly is not real. But here’s what she had to say:

I just have a teensy question. I read the movie reviews for Channing Tatum and I think that you rated all the movies wrongly… or at least most of them. I realize that this is just your opinion but I think you desperately need to reevaluate your movie reviews if you wish to look cool and stuff like that, u no?

Ha Ha

Ha ha indeed! I’m sure Gertrude Irvingale is right, actually. If I wish to look cool to 15-year-old girls (which I assume she is), then yes, I should probably start evaluating Channing Tatum’s movies differently, i.e., I should give them all A+ grades because Channing Tatum is SUPA FIIIIINNNE! DAYUMN!!!

He’s actually not a bad actor at all. In “A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints” (just now being released in select theaters), he plays a conflicted Italian-American kid (!) and is pretty impressive in the role. I think it may be a breakthrough for him after paying his dues with crap like “Supercross” and “She’s the Man.” I suspect “A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints” is the film Gertrude thinks I got “right” (I gave it a B, the highest of any Channing Tatum film), yet ironically, I doubt she would enjoy it, what with the serious plot and believable characters and intelligent dialogue and so forth. He does have his shirt off a couple times, though, so maybe it would win her over.

But it is foolish to spend time belittling pseudonymous teenagers when there are grown-ups to harass. Here’s what a fellow named Bill had to say about my review of the current Will Ferrell opus:

You have lost your mind and should not be allowed a forum to review any more movies. That was the worst movie of all time (or tied with some others). What a useless waste of film production and distribution. Not funny, entertaining, or amusing, with some very twisted gender bending, not to mention JUST BAD ACTING. THE FILM STUNK.
Even my daughter hated it. Did somebody pay you to give this pile of crap a good review? Go back to film school and work on your studies a bit more before you review anything again. Thank you. Bill

It happened to be my birthday the day I got this, and I was feeling playful. So I sent this reply:

You have lost your mind and should not be allowed a forum to send any more e-mails. That was the worst response to a review I’ve ever read. What a waste of time. Did someone pay you to send me that e-mail? Go back to e-mail school and work on your studies a bit more before you respond to any more reviews. Thank you.

I’m thinking of using that as a form letter, actually.

Next up: An e-mail from someone whose “From” line says Sean, though his e-mail address is john811416usa@netscape.net. Maybe his name is Sean John. He didn’t sign it at all, so it’s hard to say. In fact, the e-mail itself was vague. It reads:

What do you base your reviews on? Are you, or were you an actor at anytime? How long have you been doing this? You seem to be a real punk, who loves attention and needs a swift kick in the [donkey]. YOUR website is boring, kind of like your reviews. Your writing has no creativity and needs a lot of work. And by the way, who in the hell would buy your crap anyway? My advice, go back to starbucks, if you really apply yourself, you just might make assistant manager in about 7-years! You’re Pathetic

Actually, now that I look at it, the capitalization of “You’re Pathetic” and the fact that it occurs at the end of the e-mail makes me think maybe that’s his name. Hmm.

My response to You’re Pathetic was as follows:

Thank you for your mature, well-reasoned e-mail.

To answer your questions, I am not an actor, and I have been reviewing movies since 1999.

Was there a particular review that angered you? Or just life in general?

He did not reply. Once again I fail to understand how someone can become so enraged by a mere movie review. Oh well. Back to Starbucks with me!

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