Field of Bad Dreams

January 13th, 2010


A couple days ago, Chris was flipping through the TV channels and landed on one playing Field of Dreams. “Oh, stop here,” I said. “I’ve never really seen this movie.” An hour or so later, once it was over, he turned off the TV and asked me what I thought.

“I don’t know. It was okay,” I shrugged. “I mean, you know how I feel about Costner.” (I have a well-known, inexplicable disdain for all things Kevin C. It started around the time of The Bodyguard and reached its pinnacle around that crapfest Waterworld. But in my defense, he’s just so damn tan and smug.) “I guess the baseball story and that father/son stuff was fine. But why did they take out all the swear words? They didn’t have to—it’s cable. You don’t even have to wear pants on cable.”

“Wait—what swear words?” he asked.

“You know, ‘If you build it, he will come, motherf*cker!’”

At this point my husband simply stared at me for a few minutes, perhaps considering all of his options and whether or not he needed to start hiding the cold medicine, so I then had to explain that the only other time I’d seen Field of Dreams was at a fifth-run $1 movie theater in downtown Portland, Oregon. The audience that day was composed of myself, my friend Tom, and about 50 drunk street people who would pay their dollar for the first showing of a movie, then stagger out after the last showing. The entire theater smelled like feet, hot dogs and spilled Thunderbird.

Everybody in the theater besides us had already memorized the entire movie, so the bedraggled pack would gleefully yell out every single line of dialogue as it played. Hence, at least fifteen screams of, “IF YOU BUILD IT, HE WILL COME, MOTHERF*CKER!” followed by the cacophony of bottles and cans rolling underneath seats, random moaning, and a lot of loud crashes coming from the various wrestling matches that were being orchestrated by a rather smelly gentleman named “Spraygun.” Seriously, it was a lot of entertainment for a dollar.

“So, all this time you thought that was the real dialogue?” Chris asked. “In a baseball movie?”

“What? Of course not! I mean, no! I mean, maybe. I mean, yes. Yes, I did. Stupid Costner.”

“Well, that’s not the way it’s said. By anyone. Field of Dreams is a really great movie and the line is ‘If you build it he will come.’ Period.”

“Fine,” I said as I got up off the couch. “I won’t say it like that anymore.  But since we’re on the subject, does this mean that ‘I’m Batman, You Dumbass Honky Crackhead’ isn’t right either? Because I saw that for a dollar, too.”

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Add your own

  • 1. Cathy  |  January 13th, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    Loved reading this. I too, have a disdain for Costner. It’s remarkable that “Dances with Wolves” had any redeeming value considering the flat, “I’m reading from a script” voiceover of John Dunbar. Though I will thank Kevin Costner for providing YEARS of comic relief as my hubby and I, whenever we don’t understand how to pronounce something, will say “Kick-ing bird” and “Jon-Dun-Ber”.

    But my point on “Field of Dreams” is that I’m not really a fan of baseball, but oh my God, when James Earl Jones goes off on his whole, “…the memories will be so thick they’ll have to wave them away from their faces” speech, I weep like an 8th grade girl who’s just been dumped for the first time.

    And then at the end, when Costner says to his Dad, “Wanna have a catch,” I curl up in a fetal position, and wait for death.

    So I guess part of me does have to thank Costner for that.

    This is way too long for a comment. I’m coming off like a stalker now.

    Bottom line: this one? A gem!

  • 2. Margo  |  January 13th, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    This is hysterical. I confess I love this movie – especially when his dad comes out of the bushes, I mean cornfield. That didn’t sound right. I ashamed to say I used to love Kevin. But I have father issues. This explains all of the above.

  • 3. Surfie  |  January 13th, 2010 at 6:27 pm

    I haven’t seen this movie in AGES, and don’t remember much about it. I’ve never seen Dances with Wolves. I have to admit I’ve always loved Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.

    Man, I wish I had a $1 movie theater! Sounds like all kinds of fun can be had there.

  • 4. Mirth  |  January 13th, 2010 at 7:35 pm

    I’m ashamed to admit that I made my husband drive me to see the “actual field of dreams” in Iowa. It’s a baseball diamond. In a cornfield. Actually, the really funny thing is that the field was carved out of two adjoining properties for the movie and when the movie was finished filming, only one farmer wanted to keep the field. So, really, it’s more of a baseball trapezium. In a cornfield.

  • 5. Jan  |  January 13th, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    Oh. my. gosh…I didn’t know there were other people who couldn’t stand ole’ wooden head…er…Kevin! I think the worst movie he ever made was nearly every one he ever made, really. Thought I will say Field of Dreams is a good movie, in spite of Mr. Wood. The fact that the little girl acts circles around him is amazing in itself and James Earle Jones looks bemused constantly that he has to stand next to Costner at all. And then Burt? Even at his age, he looked sexier than Costner did.

    Among all the worst movies that Costner made, I don’t think you can get much worse than Robin Hood. His absolutely horrible British accent was pretty much gone by the 3rd scene of the movie…it was an abomination and drove me back to watching Errol Flynn, who could at least bury his Aussie accent enough to pass for a Brit (not to mention, looked FANTASTIC in tights…well, FANTASTIC in just about anything he ever wore..and he was a better actor than Costner, not that that is saying much!)

    I guess you can tell I have a hate equal to your own. We could start a Kevin Costner Anti-Fan Club or a Kevin Costner Defamation Society. You could be the president, I would be your faithful secretary Madge (though that’s not my name, but it sounds good, doesn’t it?) We would hold secret meetings in the top row of the bleachers at Wrigley Field during Cub’s games, drinking beer and yelling “IF YOU BUILD IT THEY WILL COME, MOFO!!!” I doubt they would throw us out…at least not too many times.

  • 6. DeeDee from SA  |  January 13th, 2010 at 8:55 pm

    I, too, detest KC. Seriously, he can read a script as well as I can read Esperanto. From now on, I’m going by your swear-word version on both movies because $1-movies rock.

  • 7. Mandy  |  January 13th, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    Hahahahahaha. I think that movie is super-dumb too.

  • 8. Sarah M  |  January 13th, 2010 at 10:28 pm

    ‘I’m Batman, You Dumbass Honky Crackhead’
    I am BUSTING up!!!!!
    My 13 year old is also …does that make me a bad mother???? …She BEGS me to read your posts…I have to scan the content as I read ha ha…:0)

  • 9. Tammy  |  January 13th, 2010 at 10:44 pm

    I have just one word of caution…NEVER read your posts at 12:38 in the morning…you bust out laughing, waking up hubby in the process, who thinks he’s being attacked, throws a pillow across the room, and then looks at me like I’M the stupid one. I let him read this….he thinks we’re long lost sisters! As for ,”I’m Batman, You Dumbass Honky Crackhead”…next time the kids make me sit through the 4 movies I have, I’m gonna have to start saying that…might get me out of watching it!

  • 10. christy  |  January 14th, 2010 at 6:55 am

    Too funny!!! And I’m totally with you on the anti-kevin c. thing. Eww he is just NOT all that anymore. Not like he ever was, anyway!

  • 11. Cait  |  January 14th, 2010 at 7:47 am

    Oh Wendi, how I love your blog. Your version of both lines is just so much better. Unfortunately this post means that I’m NOT going to be able to show Field of Dreams at dinner and a movie tonight (they get here in 2 hours) and now have to devise a whole new theme. Reading this makes that worth it :D

  • 12. Crys  |  January 14th, 2010 at 8:28 am

    I liked Robin Hood – Morgan Freeman is the one who saved it for me. I really have NEVER seen what the big deal about KC has been. His voice just grates at me for some reason. You know, I think that the added commentary from you and your drunkie buds is AWESOME!!!

  • 13. Shannon  |  January 14th, 2010 at 8:46 am

    So now I know why there aren’t any $1 theaters open anymore.

  • 14. phd in yogurtry  |  January 14th, 2010 at 9:01 am

    I do like Costner, to look at him, anyway Lurved him in No Way Out .. that backseat limo scene? Ooh baby. But I didn’t like F of D very much. Too sappy. Corny. Over the top dream-land. And it just wasn’t all that great of a story, frankly.

    I think F of D explains what happens when you live in the middle of an I-state surrounded by a bunch of corn fields and plows. You start hallucinating about eight men coming out of the history books to play baseball. ???

  • 15. Patty  |  January 14th, 2010 at 9:48 am

    My daughter has always referred to Waterworld as Dances with Clams.

    She was right.

    As for the $1 movie theater, I have been to one, and it started a chain reaction so that I cannot stand going to the movies anymore. Anything worth seeing will be on DVD or download from iTunes in time. Cheaper.

  • 16. Shelly  |  January 14th, 2010 at 9:59 am

    This is awesome. And yeah, KC sucks.

  • 17. Lori  |  January 14th, 2010 at 11:07 am

    HAHAHAAHAH! I’ve never seen Field of Dreams but I have lots of experience with $1 movies. The greatest way to see a movie ever.

    There is a particularly loathsome Kevin Costner film where he is attacked by a geriatric parrot. The film itself is so terrible that my mind has blocked out the title and most of the plot, so I can’t tell you why Costner suffers a parrot attack. I just know that whenever I remember that ancient, mostly-bald parrot going quackers on Kevin Costner I lose my shit. Totally.

  • 18. Hannah  |  January 14th, 2010 at 11:48 am

    LOL! All Costner films should have such “colourful” commentary!

  • 19. peajaye  |  January 14th, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    here’s a fun story i once heard about kc and don johnson of miami vice fame. it’s probably not true, but this is the internet, so what better place for it? supposedly, back in the day when kc & dj were top of the hollywood heap – they used to go out together to dinner with about 10-20 female “hopefuls”. to their credit, the men did not “sleep” with all 20, but used the dinner to narrow it down to maybe just 1 or 2. sorta like ‘the bachelor’ without the roses or tv cameras, i guess. ah, the good ol days.

  • 20. Laura  |  January 14th, 2010 at 12:51 pm

    Laughing. So. Hard. Can’t. Type.

  • 21. Amber  |  January 14th, 2010 at 7:06 pm

    Awww I miss dollar movies! I kinda liked Dances With Wolves, but now it will never be the same :P

  • 22. ann  |  January 14th, 2010 at 8:32 pm

    I saw Bachelor Party that way.

    He really does say “Nick The Dick” though.

  • 23. Sophie  |  January 15th, 2010 at 5:01 am

    If you build it he will come: Period!


  • 24. amy2boys  |  January 15th, 2010 at 9:10 am

    Oh my God, I’m cry-laughing!!!!!!! Thanks for the ab workout. This is hee-larious.

    Costner had me in that other baseball one – um – Susan Sarandon — BULL DURHAM! (I had to Google the damn thing.) His eyes, and the way he knew how to flip open her garter belt hook, and the way he painted her toenails.

    He’s done a lot of craptastic stuff since though.

  • 25. Becky Rice  |  January 15th, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    I do believe I’d like to start formulating my own list of movies I’d like to see at the $1 cinema. Some of the movies I have been subjected to could only be improved by warmth-seeking, beer-soaked, foul-mouthed patrons of the arts.

    In no particular order:
    1. Any Star Trek movie prior to last summer’s “hottie-fest” franchise reboot.
    2. Fatal Attraction
    3. The English Patient
    4. Friday the 13th
    5. Anything with Paris Hilton
    6. Ditto David Caruso
    7. Ishtar
    8. Spaceballs*
    9. Ghostbusters*
    10. 9 to 5*
    * no improvement needed, just would like to see it at a $1 cinema with the colorful commentary

  • 26. MommyAmy  |  January 15th, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    Especially funny since I’m originally from Portland.

    Ah… the dollar movies… those were the days. I recently went to a $3 movie here in the ‘Couve. It was a romance/drama and there was this old guy near the back who would make loud objectionable comments every time there was a mushy parts (“Unbelievable!” “You’ve got to be kidding me?!” “Is this shit for real?!”). Provided a LOT of comic relief for the entire theater audience!

  • 27. Kate Coveny Hood  |  January 15th, 2010 at 2:05 pm

    This brought back memories of going to DC movie theaters and not hearing half the dialog because of the audience participation. I think I caught about 25% of the jokes in Beverley Hills Cop II. But no bad language or anything. I guess it was more of a family friendly crowd.

  • 28. Lulu and Moxley's Mom  |  January 15th, 2010 at 8:00 pm

    You feel about Costner the way I feel about Matthew McConaughey. (Although I didn’t hate him The Wedding Planner. Or that movie where Ashely Judd and Sandra Bullock fight over him.) But I digress. Didn’t you cry in between the non-existent foul language? I cry just at the title alone. Which means I am crying now. Costner now sucks. But I do love that movie.

  • 29. Rox  |  January 16th, 2010 at 11:30 am

    For me, it’s any movie with Jeff Goldblum that does me in; I see his face, I think “creepy, crappy pseudoscience BS” and flip the channel. Nicholas Cage is a close second; is there a movie worse than that snake thing? Ick.

    While I love your version of Field of Dreams, I love Kevin Costner, though, and especially heart The Bodyguard. I came of age in the Whitney era, so I’m messed up in a lot of ways. Forgive me… but he’s smokin’ hot even as he rapidly approaches old-as-dirt. What can I say… I’m drawn to smug. George Clooney, anyone?!

  • 30. Chris Mancini  |  January 16th, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    Oh no, remember after Waterworld came the Postman. Like Waterworld, but in the desert and with mail.

  • 31. Invader_Stu  |  January 17th, 2010 at 5:34 am

    No but there really is famously the line “I’m the god dam Batman” in one of the comic books… Ok, that was total geek trivia.

  • 32. ellemck  |  January 17th, 2010 at 10:11 am

    “I’m Batman, you dumbass honky crackhead” You’re killing me from that line Wendi. It’s hilarious.

    Also loved it in Men in Tights when my man Cary Elwes said, “Because, unlike SOME Robin Hood’s, I speak with an English accent.” Just the perfect dig at KC’s craptastic job in Prince of Dweebs… I mean Thieves. ;)

  • 33. Jen  |  January 17th, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    Now that $1 theater would be great for all the unbelievably crappy movies that are just tortuous to sit through. Having the audience ad lib the lines might actually make them fun. Although anything with enough alcohol can be made tolerant.

  • 34. Baby Mama  |  January 17th, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    I *heart* you. And here’s my writing 2 cents. I love the way you write dialogue. It’s not an excessive use of dialogue, nor is it an excessive use of narrative. Perfect. Balance. If I ever show up in Austin (isn’t that where you write from?) can I buy you a margarita? Or a crack pipe? Or whatever, because I have a serous girl crush.

  • 35. jessica  |  January 17th, 2010 at 11:39 pm

    he makes me nuts too, and not in a good way. Him and Jim Carrey and Gwenyth Paltrow or however you spell her motherfucking name.

  • 36. Kat  |  January 18th, 2010 at 12:14 pm

    It’s so comforting to know that someone else has the same disdain for Kevin Costner as myself. I was afraid I was the only one that noticed how effing smug he seems all the time.

    You’re hillarious btw.

  • 37. the mama bird diaries  |  January 18th, 2010 at 6:54 pm

    Field of Dreams would have been so much better if you had written the screenplay.

  • 38. Sarah  |  January 18th, 2010 at 8:23 pm

    This is fracking hysterical! Where the hell have I been for so long!

  • 39. redgirl  |  January 22nd, 2010 at 10:53 pm

    Haven’t seen Feild of Dreams. Don’t intend to unless I have my tried and true flatemate who will *help* me decimate as we watch.

    My theory on Costner is this: Someone had a bet with someone else that they could get the public to accept a crappy un-actor and KC was chosen. Promptly throws money around to convince us he’s good. Now, too much money has been spent over tehe years to admit anything so there’s now way to save face if they denounce him now.


    Wendi..I have to wait every few weeks to read your blog b/c if I only have one to read at a time, I get sad :’(

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