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Episode 33 — Abduction

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Oh, Abduction. We laughed, we cried (at least Jason did), we got uncomfortable, we were confused. Jessica Chaffin is our guest this week to unwrap the layers of awfulness that awarded Abduction its 4% score on Rotten Tomatoes. From the Pittsburghian influence to the subtle racism, we're here to try to make sense of it all. Rent Abduction from Amazon using this link to support the show, and join us for this train-ride to mediocrity.

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Now I kind of wish this film had been done for HDTGM while it was still in the theater, if only for the thought of Jason watching this, alone, in public, with a single tear running down his cheek.

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"I define him as the singer of 'Sussudio,' not as the drummer of The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway."

 

Between this and the Mon-Chi-Chi theme, this may be Mantzoukas' finest HDTGM episode yet. You cannot debunk this.

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"I define him as the singer of 'Sussudio,' not as the drummer of The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway."

 

Between this and the Mon-Chi-Chi theme, this may be Mantzoukas' finest HDTGM episode yet. You cannot debunk this.

UNDEBUNKABLE!

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I'm glad you guys were able to stop hurting my ears when you all started yelling over each other.

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You guys hit most of the things I wrote down when I watched the film. I'm also amazed at the hacking powers of both the CIA and the bad guys in these types of films. It reminds me of NTSF:SD:SVU:: when the boss is like "SAM, search the entire US database for people with birthdays today".

 

Two other points I found stupid. If the bad guy has an electronic encrypted list, why did he not back it up? Seriously. Do people in these films not have a basic crasp of technology? Secondly, why is the CIA doing official business in the middle of a packed stadium? The bad guy clearly would know that the CIA is following him and Nathan and if he shot Nathan that would immediately pinpoint him to be arrested. Furthering that, when he attempts to shoot him in the parking lot. What the hell does he think he would do when he's shot Nathan? In the middle of a public parking lot outside a MLB stadium, he isn't going to get far at all. Plus I like how the CIA just drives up and nonchalantly picks up the body and then has an exchange of highly classified government information casually as massive crowds walk by while making no attempt to hide what they are doing.

 

I also agree with June (?) who stated the set designer is the unsung hero. Totally agree. The film looks amazing.

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You missed how the gun was hidden under the seat at the stadium, but you can clearly see how all the seats flip up when nobody is sitting in them. So the gun would have been clearly visible!

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Jason and Jessica are married in a parrallel universe, and it's wonderful

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Hey, Pittsburgh is an awesome city! I resent the anti-Pittsburgh sentiment this episode was riddled with. We are QUITE classy and the city is beautiful. However, all Pirates jabs were absolutely justified. The part of this where Taylor is pumped to "score" Pirates tickets is pretty laughable, you can walk up any day of the game and get them for probably less than $10. Why didn't they just go for the Steelers? Or Penguins? We have two other pretty awesome sport teams...just another part of this movie that made absolutely no sense.

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Whoa... that Blackie stuff was starting to get kinda rough....

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This episode debunked me. Am I using debunked right?

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I try to watch (download mostly) all of the HDTGM films. Both of the Lautner joints (this and Twilight) had Swedish subtitles so I am deducing that Swedes loooooooove Taylor Lautner.

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I'm the one that put the bomb in the oven! Seriously....

 

I'm from the Pittsburgh area and have worked on 9 movies over the last couple of years as an extra, driver, stand-in, and body double. Apparently, due to a big tax credit, the studio (production company?) gets a LOT of money back for shooting in Pennsylvania. Also, no one gets excited about the Pirates. Ever. You guys commented on the extras a lot, and you certain'y WEREN'T wrong. The extras casting call for this was huge, but like 90 percent of the people that turned out for it were teenage girls that just wanted to see Taylor Lautner and scream his name. Guess who they DON'T want on a movie set? Teenage girls that just want to scream every time they see Taylor Lautner. Anyway, the agency that got used for this film wasn't one of the loca casting agencies that usually handles the bigger productions. Instead, Singleton used the same people he uses for when he shoots movies in L.A. or New York (Winsome Cinclair, or something like that), where you have a MUCH bigger pool of available people, and they were very opposed to re-using people, even if they hadn't appeared on camera and been "established". Often, they'd put out an APB on Facebook on the day of, including the original day that they shot at PNC Park (the Pirates' stadium), and stil come up short. I worked the day of the hospital scene and wasn't used, but when I'd call and tell them that, that I'd be happy to work, they wouldn't let me. Fuckers. I ended up being a last minute substitute twice and got to work some more anyway, which brings me to...the bomb in the oven.

 

Around 10 o'clock the night before, a message went up on Facebook (because God forbid they try to CALL any of the thousands of people that went to the casting call) looking for a white male between 5'10"-6', 170-185 lbs. (me, basically), and they wanted pictures of hands. I e-mailed them my resume and pictures, and they called me back, asking if I'd like to be a body and hand double the next day, and that they'd call me in the morning with a time. They didn't. I had an address and an APPROXIMATE time, so I hauled ass over there and ended up being 2 hours early. I was sent to wardrobe, which is where I found out I'd be doubling for Jason Isaacs. They were wrapping things up, doing some second unit pick-ups and close-ups and stuff, so there were lots of PARTS of sets, including the garage where Jason Isaacs was doing his late-night metal work. I filmed several scenes where I was creeping around with a pistol, loading it and putting a silencer on it while walking through the garage. I also did some similar scenes where I'm walking along the outside a mock-up of the side of the house doing the same thing. None of this was used (it popped up in the trailer though), but it made it seem like it would be more suspenseful than it played out in the film, like it was going to be a surprise that the figure with the gun was the dad. Maybe they scrapped that idea when they gave it all away anyway in the trailer.

 

There was also a mock-up of the kitchen. What WASN'T there though was someone to fill in for the bald actor that Taylor fights in the house, probably due to the fact that no one matching his description was checking out Facebook for casting notices in the middle of the night. What they did, since the only "actors" there were Taylor and Lilly (who were re-shooting some of the bedroom stuff before filming some of the train scene on green screen) and myself, was put ME in the guy's wardrobe and had me be the guy to put the bomb in the oven. Of course, the original actor was much bigger than me, so there was some trickery to make it look like the clothes fit me, even though all you'd see is my shoulder and hand. I had to open the oven door, put the bomb in, set the timer (4 minutes), and slam the door shut. I nailed it in like 3 takes and was actually complimented on my bomb-placement abilities by the second unit director. There's a skill that I never thought would come in handy...

 

Fast forward a year, and I'm checking out this movie at the theater that I manage. I'm waiting, waiting, waiting to see if I make it in. After seeing Jason working in the garage, my hopes were high, but rather than stealthily moving inside the house, he comes in with guns blazing. That's OK, because the bad guys were there, and they HAD to plant the bomb in the kitchen, right? The parents get killed, and the bad guys search the place, but i notice that no one ever goes to the kitchen. Taylor shows up, fights happen, then dude says there's a bomb in the oven. Like idiots, the kids check the oven instead of run directly out of the house, and the world is left wondering "where did that fucking bomb come from?". Well, there you go. I put it there.

 

In addition to being Taylor's dad and the mystery bomber, I also got to be one of Alfred Molina's agents investigating the scene after the guy gets thrown off the train, and I'm also running for my life outside of the Pirates game when the bad guy starts shooting. THAT was filmed a few months later, during what I can only assume was Dermot Mulrooney's only day on set. I basically had to walk circles around him for a while while they filmed him (filmed the lower half of his face anyway) talking on the phone. The agency that handled the extras casting for the re-shoots WAS one of the local agencies, and they had no trouble finding people and getting them there on time.

 

Anyway, I love the podcast, and it's awesome to hear you talk about an awful, awful movie that I actually have quite a bit of firsthand personal experience with. I'm not sure that anything else I've worked on even charts on the "what the fuck"-titude scale, but I'd be happy to tell you how awesome it is to get paid to check out Katherine Heigl's ass all day and listen to John Leguizamo and Sherry Shepperd talk about Larry Fishburne's daughter's sex tape on the set of "One For the Money"...

 

Rob Brown

www.mossercasting.com/PlanBFromOuterSpace

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Oh, one more thing! You talk about Lautner having T-Rex arms, but having met the kid and seen him up close quite a few times, I'd have to say that it's his weird giraffe neck that really freaks me out.

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Don't mean to be churlish: but the talking/shouting over each other was too much for me. Would it be crazy to ask for you all to stick to a chronological account of the movie, for the listener's sake. I don't think I can take too much more of this. I know: it's free, who am I to criticize, go fuck myself, etc.

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@sad billionaire. There have been many perfect episodes. This one was awesome because it was so off the wall. Drink some wine and listen. You'll love it!

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@sad billionaire. There have been many perfect episodes. This one was awesome because it was so off the wall. Drink some wine and listen. You'll love it!

 

 

Really, I mean how many times have you been talking about a great awful movie where you HAVE to cut in and go "Oh yeah, and what about the part when...!". I think it's a real credit to the entertainment value of a movie when you can do that, when you have to just blurt out something about the insanity of what's going on. Speaking of which, I'd love to see someone tackle the 2006 "When A Stranger Calls". I've only seen that film once, yet I can still recall almost every little stupid thing, because that's ALL the film is. It goes absolutely nowhere and has no payoff, but spends eighty minutes trying to convinve you that something will happen, even though you know that NOTHING will happen until the "He's calling from inside the house!" line.

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I registered just so I could ask you guys to not yell over each other. You had one guy trying to talk aver the lady, and he would repeat the begining of his phrase like four times until he had thrown her off track, and she did the same with everybody else.

 

Come on guys, what you are talking about is not so important that every opinion you have about it needs to be heard. It diminishes the humor, and causes a headache.

 

But you guys are obviously entertaining, this will be a fun show if y'all can nail the timing.

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That guest host was terrible! What's with 'blackie' and harping constantly on that kid's weight? Really, that's why the movie sucked - cause the actors weren't thin enough? The kid's a teenager who looks like an average person and it's not fun to listen to adults play the mean kids piling on the peer pressure. The assassin was fat? That's hardly what was wrong with the assassin scene. Hit men can look like ordinary middle aged guys. The fact that they didn't get a ripped 20-something to play the hit man is not what made that scene suck.

 

Meanwhile there were so many larger plot points that were howlingly bad which you guys didn't get to cause you're obsessing over what model car is being shown (who cares what the cheapest model of Mercedes is?) and teasing the black kid. Like - the file is on his cell phone so why doesn't he just text it to the bad guy and skip the face-off, which he walked into with no plan. They walk into that face-off with no plan for what to say to the bad guy, yet they all managed to coordinate on wearing Pirates gear to the game. When did they have time to do that shopping? Just cause it's a baseball game doesn't mean you all have to wear the team uniform! Or when the hitman came to the compartment door he knocked twice before entering - so she didn't just tell rat him out on the room number but also the secret signal! She's a terrible would-be girlfriend! Not to mention why did he let her go alone to the snack car in the first place? Seeing if the coast is clear with a little munchie run while you're being trailed by trained assassins - oh, that's women's work.

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Don't mean to be churlish: but the talking/shouting over each other was too much for me. Would it be crazy to ask for you all to stick to a chronological account of the movie, for the listener's sake. I don't think I can take too much more of this. I know: it's free, who am I to criticize, go fuck myself, etc.

 

There were some over-excited moments, but it wasn't all that bad. I for one like when they get animated about the movies they're talking about. They just need to reel it in sometimes.

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Come on guys, what you are talking about is not so important that every opinion you have about it needs to be heard. It diminishes the humor, and causes a headache.

 

Dude, its not like they're trying to go for a Pulitzer or anything. Sometimes when people are ragging on a bad movie, it turns into a pile on. That's all, it was a vocal pile on. It only happened a couple of times, and it wasn't even that bad. Ever try listening to Hardball with Chris Matthews? Now THAT is some serious cross talk.

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