Five good souls braved Knowing with us last night, and none tried any hanky panky. The thought of any hanky panky was certainly the last thing on anyone’s mind during the bloodbath festivities. The consensus among our guests, particularly Matthew Leathers, was that Knowing was not in the same category as, for example, the wretched 8MM. Mark Hoobler remarked that, had he been watching Knowing on DVD, he would have at least stuck it out until the end. That’s one of the reasons we hated Knowing so much: It wasn’t half bad to start out with. It could have been just a mediocre movie. But somewhere along the way — and if you asked us, we’d pinpoint the exact moment being when Nic Cage’s son Caleb looks out the window to behold an apocalyptic vision of hell on earth, replete with a flaming moose bursting forth from the conflagration — Knowing went off the rails. In a post-movie roundtable discussion, we addressed a few key questions, such as:
- Did L. Ron Hubbard write the screenplay? (Really, he didn’t?)
- Why did the boy and girl who were abducted befriended by aliens both take a rabbit with them on the spaceship? Is it like Noah’s Ark and the animals two-by-two? Or is it symbolic of the fact that this young Adam and Eve will need to do it like rabbits to repopulate the human race? Or is it just because nobody cared anymore?
- Were the aliens really extras from a Depeche Mode video shoot?
- Is there a direct correlation between the length of Nic Cage’s hair and the awfulness of the movie?
- Which preview generated more laughter: Sorority Row or Crank: High Voltage? (Or Drag Me to Hell?)
- Did Nic really describe his character as “almost cinema verite … so that it would make the experience more terrifying for you and perhaps more visceral in some way”? (Answer: Yes.)
- Did one review of Knowing really state, “What might have been a profound philosophy on existentialism is churned into a dull affair swirling around the vortex of Valium that is Nicolas Cage”? (Answer: Yes.)
- And did that same review also declare, “While the effects work is excellent, it’s quickly tarnished by Nic Cage stumbling around the chaos not getting anything accomplished. I can think of no better summary for Knowing than the previous sentence”? (Answer: Yes.)
- Did Erin really buy Beethoven’s “Symphony No. 7 in A Major” off iTunes after hearing it in the movie?
- Will the five people who joined us last night ever speak to us again? (Answer: Unclear.)
Now that we’ve given you the opportunity to see this film, we’re going to spoil it for you in one final, cleansing act of retribution for the wrongs it has perpetrated on us (twice), on five of our good friends last night, and on untold millions. Here’s how it ends: Cage, who has deciphered an apparently random string of numbers which predict every major global catastrophe of the past half century, as well as one catastrophe yet to occur, attempts to save his son (and the world) from solar flares which will destroy the planet. Only he doesn’t. That’s right, everyone dies in a CGI orgy of destruction. Everyone except Cage’s son and a young girl named Abby, who are invited by aliens who may or may not be angels into a crystal spaceship and flown to some Edenic planet in another solar system where they will, one guesses with a bit of revulsion, restart the human race.
You have no idea what a relief it is to get that out. We, like Nic Cage, had to prevent our own global catastrophe, which would have been you watching this movie without an idea of what you were getting into. To borrow one of the more-guffawed at lines from the movie: Yes, they needed to go where the numbers wanted them to go. Our numbers want us to take a giant #2 directly after viewing this dumptastic film.
To our friends who joined us last night: You are better people than we will ever be. We understand that you’ll never want to see us again. But thank you for keeping us company. We invite you to use the comments space as a safe, constructive place for you to process what you saw last night and/or denigrate us personally.