TROUBLE CITY

YE OLDE RENFAIR COMEDY?

Movie NewsRuss FischerComment

 What I think it'll take for me to enjoy a new Jack Black movie:

A small budget.

A concept that doesn't take a dictionary and a stack of Tijuana Bibles to explain.

Pants.

Which is a roundabout way of saying, of course, that Nacho Libre was terrible and that anything that looks remotely like it will get a pass broader than the Khyber. And it has nothing to do with the fact that Ye Olde Times, which Black will now narrate as a chap named Professor Shockworthy, might be watchable, and might not be.

But all is not dire. In this tale of Renaissance Fair amor which brings together two as yet uncast young lovers, Black will have some talented co-stars* such as Will Arnett and Tim Robbins. The latter will also be bringing along his friend Rob White to direct. White and Robbins co-founded The Actor's Gang (one of those fancy big city theater troupes where things like 'craft' and 'motivation' are still said to matter) many years ago, so it's not like Robbins is just showing up to set from a bud's barbeque with any old sod in tow.

This stocking-clad story (hey, those aren't pants!) is one of several projects for which Kimmel International will be wrangling the purse strings. Their most interesting venture, of course, is Charlie Kaufman's Synecdoche, New York, which might kickstart the long dormant Big City In A Little Warehouse genre, which has been stagnant since Spielberg half-assed it at the end of Raiders.

*Then there's also Cary Elwes.