10,000 B.C.

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By Mark Ramsey | 2008/03/17

Just when you thought Hollywood had to dip back into ancient history to find an original story, you discover that “B.C.” must stand for “Before Christ” because God knows it doesn’t represent “Before Cliché.”

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“What part of ‘I’m no Martin Scorcese’ don’t you understand?” asked 10,000 B.C.’s producer, director, writer, gaffer, aesthetician, amateur bowler, paralegal, and personal shopper Roland Emmerich.

“You know,” Roland added, “making a movie that earns 100 million bucks isn’t hard. Making one that people care about 100 minutes after it opens, that’s hard.”

Witness an ancient tribe of early humans which seems to be led by Wyclef Jean and the Fugees! They hunt to survive – and perhaps hunt for a new record label while they’re at it.

“We must kill that mastodon or wooly mammoth or whatever it is, then squeeze in time for a recording session!”

I don’t know about you, but if I want to get excited about an ancient mammal I’ll tune in Janice Dickinson.

Look, the hunt is on! Primeval man’s strategy seems to equate to this: Sneak up on your prey, then stand up and scream like a fool!

Our hero claims the white spear and the woman with blue eyes. “In my experience, women with blue eyes tend to prefer the black spear,” said Emmerich, “but that’s another story I’ll adapt poorly from different non-original sources later.”

In his zeal for authenticity, Emmerich has crafted (and I use the term loosely) an ancient world where everyone speaks perfect English. “It was either English or more subtitles,” said Emmerich, “but this movie was already sub-so-many-things that I didn’t want to add titles to the list.”

Just how much research did Roland do on ancient man?

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“On the DVD Director’s Cut you’ll see the savages shout ‘yabba-dabba-doo’ when the whistle blows at the quarry,” he whispered quietly.

Sigh.

Back to the movie:

“Four-legged demons will put an end to our world,” predicts a soothsaying witch-doctor lady, as Emmerich and his collaborators crawl by on their way to the mudhole of mediocrity that spawned them.

10,000 B.C. is the perfect movie for you if your taste runs to movies with no stars, no one who will ever be a star, no one who has ever seen a star, and no one who knows that a star has five points – as opposed to 10,000 B.C., which has no point.

“In my book,” explained Emmerich, “‘star’ is a four-letter word – like ‘good.’”

If Raquel Welch taught us anything, it’s that nothing should come between a prehistoric woman and her fur bikini.

Let’s likewise hope that nothing comes between Roland Emmerich and early retirement.

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