All John Travolta's Dialogue In Pelham 1 2 3 Could Easily Have Been Spoken By Cartman


I caught Tony Scott's insipid The Taking of Pelham 123 the other night, and while our full review is forthcoming, I thought it might be interesting to note how absurd John Travolta's bad guy character "Ryder"* is. He plays a tattoo-necked thug who's served hard time but [GIANT SPOILER ALERT] is actually a convicted Wall St. trader (HOLLYWOOD'S NEW ENEMY™). He's looking for a novel way to make a buck by taking a subway train hostage and using that terrorist act to leverage the markets. Luckily, a passenger's laptop webcam is on the whole time, and the signal works hundreds of feet beneath Manhattan, so MTA headquarters can monitor the entire thing as it plays itself out. Not that any of this affects the plot in the least.

Yes, it's as stupid as it sounds. No, actually, it's way more stupid than it sounds. Luckily, there are constant title cards reminding us that there's "63 MINUTES LEFT....48 MINUTES LEFT...17 MINUTES LEFT" on Ryder*'s ransom deadline; more than ratcheting the non-tension, they provide a handy reminder of how much longer you have to sit in the theater.

Worst of all, however, is the dialogue Travolta is required to utter, which makes him sound more like an obnoxious 13-year-old than an actual, imposing adult threat of any kind. Here's some choice lines. (I didn't write any of these down, so they may be off by a word or two, but I've captured the general tone and language.)

· "Lick my bunghole!!!"

· "Ooh, he has a sexy voice. I'd make him my bitch if we were in prison!!!"

· "I'm going to fuck you in the ass so hard!!!"

Etc., etc. Awesome dialogue, if this movie starred the cast of South Park and Travolta's part was played by Cartman. Now that I mention it, that would have been awesome. As it stands, Pelham 123 can lick my bunghole.



  • icallthebigonebitey says:

    But does Clyde Frog make a cameo?
    I find it interesting that Travolta utters all these lines in the film yet looks like an extra from Cruising.

  • Seth Abramovitch says:

    It's ridiculous.

  • Old No.7 says:

    The Bahamaian coronor is still trying to figure out who killed Kenny.

  • JudgeFudge says:

    I am eagerly awaiting a review. I love how whenever Denzel Washington teams up with Tony Scott he always plays "the common man who posses the one particular skill that will save the day". I imagine that at some point in this film Denzel says something to the effect of "What can I do to help? I'm just a guy that works for the MTA that happens to know the exact track distance, location, exits and entrances of all 327 subway stations in Manhattan. There's no way that I could be of any help in this terrorist situation."

  • daveednyc says:

    Parker and Stone need to remake this using Team America puppetry...

  • Brilliant Orange says:

    There is no spoiler you could post that even a Palin couldn't guess in five seconds.

  • SunnydaZe says:

    Are you sure those lines were meant to be sarcastic? Maybe his character is just a man wanting to be loved?

  • rodger says:

    I really like Matthau in the original.
    This movie - I hope the everyone involved is tricked into eating their own dead parents.

  • icallthebigonebitey says:

    And now the movie title makes more sense as well! Sort of a how-to guide if you will...

  • Inhaler says:

    But no one should blame Travolta here for jumping at the opportunity to dress up as his own fantasy. Besides, that dialogue sounds like his best work since Pulp Fiction.

  • MA says:

    Wow, this sounds like it might rival suckfest Man On Fire, which featured such polished dialogue as:
    "Creasy's art is death. And he's about to paint his masterpiece."
    Here's hoping Pelham sees Denzel revisit his penchant for day-saving ass grenades...

  • oize says:

    Whoever thinks John Travolta can make a believable bad guy in 2009 is smoking some serious rock.