When you type a movie title into your Web browser, you’d think the film’s website would pop up. Well, with some movies, that’d be true. Take ”Steal This Movie!” (opening Aug. 25) for example. A biopic of the original yippie Abbie Hoffman, the flick — and its website — hearken back to simpler times, when a name meant something. With some other upcoming releases, it’s impossible to know what might show up on your computer screen unless you let EW.com guide the way.
”THE CELL” (in theaters)
You may be happy to learn that some computer programmer guy honeymooned in Disneyland (though he hasn’t yet posted the wedding pictures). Oh… you were searching for the site of the freaky looking Jennifer Lopez scarefest? You won’t find it at thecell.com. Fortunately, this campily entertaining personal site includes the disclaimer ”This is not the website for New Line Cinema’s The Cell movie” and a link to the studio site. Click there to get to the trippy, nightmare chic pages for the psychological thriller, where you double click on ”id,” ”superego,” or ”ego” to go to different sections. A stranger’s wedding photos are sounding better and better now, aren’t they?
”The Cell” movie site: A-
”Cell” personal site: B+
”THE ORIGINAL KINGS OF COMEDY” (in theaters)
You can get information about the latest Spike Lee joint by going through the Kings of Comedy tour site, a lively looking, though largely unfinished site that offers nothing more than the movie site link and a tour schedule (in print that’s too tiny to read even on a 20-something inch monitor). Then it’s on to the film site, which is thoroughly standard, interchangeable with a dozen other movie sites, and contains — unfortunately — not an original byte in its digital body. If you type www.theoriginalkingsofcomedy.com into your browser, however, you’ll be taken to a gray page with a closeup of a sundial and the words ”Welcome to the Website of http://www.theoriginalkingsofcomedy.com… Please check back often!” Now THAT’S original.
Kings of Comedy tour site: I for Incomplete
”Original Kings of Comedy” movie site: C
”Original Kings of Comedy” cybersquatter site: D
”THE ART OF WAR” (opens Aug. 25)
Don’t come to theartofwar.com (or artofwar.com, for that matter) expecting to find the latest on the Wesley Snipes actioner. DO come expecting to find the big business commodification of the 6th century B.C. Chinese book by Sun Tzu. It’s THE corporate shark companion guide — we wouldn’t be surprised to find this tome on the nightstand of Richard from ”Survivor.” Considering the low profile marketing of the new movie of the same name, it’s no surprise that the official site has a bare bones look — it includes actor profiles, a trailer, and some info on the book. Maybe Snipes should get himself to a corporate ”War” seminar pronto — if the promotion (or lack thereof) for his movie and its website is any indication, he may need another option if this acting thing doesn’t work out.
Corporate seminars sites: C-
”Art of War” movie site: C+
”BRING IT ON” (Aug. 25)
Type in bringiton.com if you want to purchase T-shirts and sportswear from what is ”becoming America’s and Australia’s hottest source for athletic apparel.” But if you’re looking for hot cheerleader action, er, info on the new Kirsten Dunst comedy, try the movie site, where the gals strut their stuff and you can learn pep squad trivia. Did you know that President Dwight D. Eisenhower was a cheerleader? And so was Madonna — not terribly surprising, when you realize that the undergarments worn under a cheer skirt are called spanky pants.
Athletic wear site: C
”Bring It On” movie site: B+
”THE CREW” (Aug. 25)
Burt Reynolds’ upcoming ”over the hill gang gets back into the Mob” comedy is so old school it doesn’t even have a website. Perhaps ”The Crew”’s studio, Buena Vista, was deterred by the fact that thecrew.com was already taken by the Ohio major league soccer franchise the Columbus Crew . (It DOES claim to be ”America’s Hardest Working Website” — the studio PR flacks must’ve been really disappointed to have lost that.) And we were SO looking forward to a ”switch the actors’ hairpieces” game…
Soccer team site: B-