PATIENT:Deuces Wild

PROFILE: New York, 1950s street gang of male models battles rival models, the mob, drug pushers and fly-away hair. Yeah, there've been a lot of similar movies made with similar subject matter, similar story lines, similar music, similar characters and similar results, but Deuces Wildholds the distinction of being the only one released last week. Think Lords of Flatbush meets The Wanderers meets The Warriors meets The Cross and the Switchblademeets The Gap PresentsWest Side Story, Featuring Ribbed Scoop Tanks and Boot-Cut, Button Fly Jeans. SYMPTOMS: Took me 15 minutes to find a parking space at the local cinemall, finally found one next to two teens dry-humping against his tricked-out Hyundai complete with Spider-Man antenna ball. Then it was 20 minutes waiting in line for tickets, though I was one of eight people not buying for Spider-Man. All anyone was talking about in our theater was how to get out of it and into one of the five showing Spider-Man. A woman said she heard that Spider-Man was gory but not gross, and a guy said that Spider-Manwas cool, but he couldn't wait until they made the Aquaman movie, and when they did, he thought they should cast Andy Dick as Aquaboy. . . . Wait, that was me. Anyway, Deuces Wild isn't really a bad movie because there really is no movie there, just an amalgam of elements from previous source films—half of which star Matt Dillon—that stretch from Angels With Dirty Faces to Rumblefish. There are the hoods with the hearts of gold, the avenging brother, the grieving mother, the crusading priest, the lovers from rival gangs, the mob boss played by—hello?—Matt Dillon. It's all so familiar that the characters prancing about in their tight-fitting white T-shirts, tailored jeans and pompadours are as menacing—and inevitable—as an Adrian Zmed/Denny Terrio tickle fight. DIAGNOSIS:I'll take Zmed. Long fingers.

Stephen Dorff, Drea de Matteo
PRESCRIPTION: Separate yourself from the genre from which you suck—and my, how you suck. Instead of the same old gabardines mucking it up with bats and knives, your hero-thugs could fight with more extraordinary weapons. Powers, if you will. Super powers. Yeah, they could shoot stuff out of their wrists or throw water balls or—well, throwing water balls is really cool. And for some reason, they can control fish with their minds, and pretty soon, they're sending wave upon wave of pike, snapper and popcorn shrimp into battle. The rival gang, the Vipers, shouldn't be called the Vipers—snakes are so Old Testament. Why not the Black Mantas? Black mantas are totally cool, they're all Darth Vader with their metal heads and mechanical voice boxes. And instead of knives, they could throw water balls. Everybody's throwing water balls. Oh, and they're all riding attack seahorses, which, this being New York, are chromed to the nines, and Andy Dick shows up, and he's controlling fish except that he uses the power to do something inappropriate with a Large-Mouthed Zmed.

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