"The Paperboy Is Great Trash"

Categories: Film

So writes Roger Ebert, and he oughta know; he cowrote Beyond The Valley of the Dolls, that 1970 fantasia of drugs, music, and lunacy which is a kitschy coup of kook-culture entertainment (though to me, it's not trash at all; it's pungent satire).

And The Paperboy--the Lee Daniels-directed tale of Southern trash investigating yet more trash--certainly seems to have all the elements:

Nicole Kidman as an overripe sexual Barbie doll

The infamous urination scene. (Kindly let me hold it in and not describe that one more time. It's leaked out everywhere else, so just go there, OK?)

Zac Efron writhing around in his extremely tighty tighties. A lot.

Macy Gray as the maid who jokes with Zac about masturbation issues.

And a big star as a gay who gets hog-tied.

On paper, it sounds like the ultimate good trash film--even beyond the Beyond--and totally up my dark alley.

Then why did I find it so damned dull?

My Voice Nation Help

@JIMMYJAMESLA @willambelli @TheOnlyDetox @RuPaul @mikeymusto and Dale Dickey in "Blues for Willadean"


@JIMMYJAMESLA @TheOnlyDetox @RuPaul @mikeymusto Just cause she's a blond with roots who slept with a gay dude ....oh wait. Yea It is me.

SouthernDave like.author.displayName 1 Like

There is an art to making great movie trash.


And this is it: the greatest trash movies were INADVERTANTLY trashy. The moviemakers and talent involved thought they were making something good.


And at the time of their original release, many of these movies were taken seriously.


"Peyton Place" got NINE Oscar nominations, fer Crissake! Didn't win a one, of course.


But Nicole Kidman consciously attempting to evoke Ann-Margret at her sluttiest is calculated trash. It negates itself.


It's so embarrassing when Nicole tries to stretch and prove she's a real actress.

SavannahMontgomery like.author.displayName 1 Like

Thank you Michael, I was hoping it would be fun trashy but you and jackson30 summed it up...I'll wait till it's on Netflix.

jackson30 topcommenter

Because there's an art to making great trash and this film didn't have it.