Donovan's Tao of Steve ReviewSubmitted by ryandonovan at 2000-10-11 13:00:40 EDT
Rating: 1.5 on 3 ratings (3 reviews) (Review this item) (V)
DONOVAN’S THE TAO OF STEVE REVIEW
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Starring: Donal Logue, Greer Goodman
Directed By: Jenniphr Goodman
Written By: Jenniphr Goodman, Greer Goodman, Duncan North
You have to be careful what you say, especially in an uppity, pretentious Lincoln Park movie theater where they show $50-budget art films for $9. This is an actual conversation I had with the ticket vendor:
ME: Hi, can I get two tickets for The Tao of Steve please?
TICKET JOCKEY: I’m afraid not.
ME: Um, I can’t?
TICKET JOCKEY: No, sir.
ME: Oh, is it sold out?
TICKET JOCKEY: No, I wouldn’t say that.
ME: Then… why can’t I get tickets?
TICKET JOCKEY: Because we are not showing The Tao of Steve.
ME: But I see it right there on the marquee…
TICKET JOCKEY: We’re not showing The Tao of Steve, but we ARE showing a movie pronounced The “Dow” of Steve. Would you like two tickets to that film instead?
Any normal person would have been extremely agitated by this condescending offender. But of course, I am hardly a normal person. I was able to appreciate his polished jackassishness. So off to the film I went, making a mental note to reference a dictionary or call a pronunciation specialist before making further ticket purchases. The next guy in line, however, jabbed the ticket jockey in the eye with a pencil.
After that bit of pre-show entertainment, The Tao of Steve had a lot to live up to. And it tried its damnedest, but it came up just short of being a Steve. Donal Logue plays a fat, sloppy, unmotivated slacker who seems utterly undesirable to women, but still ends up scoring. Throughout the film, he dispenses his wisdom about macking, which is a meld of Eastern philosophy and the idea of being as cool as Steve McQueen. He dubs this belief in actualizing slob-love as the “Tao of Steve”. Silly me, I always thought it was called “Everybody Loves a Jolly Fat Guy”. This crude Taoism, simplified, is: 1) Eliminate your desire for a woman; 2) Do something excellent in her presence; and 3) After you’ve accomplished 1 and 2, retreat. Apparently, this drives the chicks nuts. At least it works for Steve McQueen and all the other studs in the movies. (These rules differ slightly from mine, which are: 1) Call her and hang up; 2) Watch her through her window at night; and 3) Discreetly follow her when she leaves the house. And remember, “You can’t legally come within 100 feet of me” is another way of saying “I love you”.)
Since this IS a movie, Logue’s theory works. In a story told in a very sub-Swingers kind of way, Logue gets his learn on with all kinds of ladies. When he meets Greer Goodman, a hard-rockin’, Harley-ridin’ Farrah Fawcett, he employs the Steve charm to its fullest. But does the Tao help him find real love? Well darn it all, you’ll just have to watch the movie.
Overall, I liked the flick. Logue is extremely likeable and easy to root for, and Goodman is attractive enough to dig, if you’re into dirty blondes with knobby knees. It’s something of an underdog story turned on its head, and I always like to see a fat guy get some Dutch-oven lovin’. But the story is not exactly novel. Movies about love/pimping philosophies are a dime a dozen. Plus, this is directed by a woman, Jenniphr Goodman, and, I hate to say it, it shows. In fact, it was written by women as well (the sisters Goodman, actress Greer and director Jenniphr), one of whom is too artsy and conceited to spell her fucking name correctly. I’m sorry, but the estrogen comes through on film a few times, especially when Logue is being excellent (Rule #2), and in the resolution of the story. Think I’m being a sexist ass? Yeah, great, go make me a sandwich.
The real winner to emerge from this movie will be Logue. This probably won’t be the movie that makes him a star, but this will get him cast in the movie that will make him a star. In a couple years, you’ll see him in mainstream cinema, where he’ll do great things. In fact, you’ve probably seen him already, sans the prosthetic lard he donned for this film. Most recently, he filled the bland role of Mel Gibson’s scrappy racist-who-has-a-change-of-heart cohort in The Patriot. More likely, you remember his hilarious Jimmy the Cab Driver from the mid-90’s MTV ads, commenting on Metallica’s 'King Nothing' video (“Okay, who threw the tomato at Jesus?”) or on Liv Tyler in Aerosmith’s 'Crazy' (“You can see her buttcrack!”).
I’d recommend that you see this movie in the theaters, but it’s not widely distributed, so you’ll probably be hard pressed to find it. Besides, it’s going to have a difficult time targeting audiences because it’s caught between genres. It’s not really a guy movie. But it’s not exactly a date movie either. And it’s definitely not a guy-dating-guy movie. So rent it. And you’ll discover that practicing the Tao of Steve will get you laid, but it won’t get you loved.
But then again, if I were a fat, lazy, slobby guy, I’d be pretty happy with getting laid.
Review This Item
Submitted by Random Joe at 2000-12-31 00:08:32 EST (#)