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Movie Jail: This week's defendant is...Cuba Gooding, Jr.!

Feb. 25, 2013by:

Welcome to Movie Jail, a facility like any other, only its inmates are Hollywood writers, directors, actors and producers. This column will serve as a Movie Jail trial. We will put one defendant on trial; lay out arguments for the Prosecution and Defense. And we leave it up to YOU, the reader, to decide whether the defendant is guilty of his or her crime. What crime? The crime of consistently being a stinking shithouse.

The Defendant


Cuba Gooding Jr.

The Case

The Prosecution: Holy shit, everything from the last 15 years*

Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury, have we ever witnessed such a rapid decline as we have with the likes of Mr. Cuba Gooding, Jr.? We're talking about a guy who won the Oscar for Jerry Maguire, tried his hand at more dramatic roles for a few years, dipped his toe into the family friendly arena, then gave up and became the Straight to DVD god we all know him as now. Sure, he tried valiantly to make a come back with 2003's Radio but as we learned from Tropic Thunder, homeboy went full retard. And you never go full retard. Do you remember how awkward you felt watching Mr. Gooding Jr., laugh and drool all over the place in that movie? We were uncomfortable. In 2009 alone, he acted in over a handful of forgettable, straight to DVD flicks. Is this what happens to Oscar winners once they win the golden statue? No, just Mr. Gooding Jr., and that's why we're looking for the court to prosecute and toss his ass in jail for a few years to slap some sense into him.


The Defense: American Gangster, Jerry Maguire, Men of Honor, Gladiator (the other one), As Good as it Gets, A Few Good Men, Boyz n the Hood, What Dreams May Come, Rat Race*

Ladies and Gentleman of the jury, Mr. Gooding, Jr. is a working actor and carved himself a nice little niche in the straight to DVD market. Is that a crime? Are these high caliber, big budget movies? No. But it's possible that the defendant hasn't had any juicy dramatic roles coming across his desk in a while. Sure, Red Tails was a disaster, but his turn as Nicky Barnes in 2007's American Gangster showed that the actor still has enough gas in the tank to showcase the goods. We understand the case against him is strong, but this year he's slated to act in Machete Kills, so is there any chance the court would be willing to give Mr. Gooding, Jr. one last shot to redeem himself?


IN CLOSING...

So, whats to be done with Cuba Gooding Jr.? Did he squander his talent away to live a long, cold life in the straight to DVD wasteland? Are the straight to DVD movies really all that bad? Has anyone even fucking seen them? And the most important question to be asked, once all evidence is taken into consideration, we ask you The Jury, is Cuba Gooding Jr. GUILTY or NOT GUILTY? Lets hear YOUR arguments, either side, by STRIKING BACK BELOW.

*The court recognizes that all movies are subjective, so relax.

WHAT SAY YOU, GUILTY OR NOT?


LAST WEEK'S VERDICT

It is the jury's decision that after reviewing last week's evidence, the court finds Al Pacino NOT GUILTY of all charges. Much like the Robert De Niro trial from a few months ago, the jury felt that Mr. Pacino's films far outweighed the good, though there were a few people here and there who felt that he needed a slap on the wrist to straighten him out.

PREVIOUS VERDICTS
GUILTY NOT GUILTY
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Extra Tidbit: Who Should Take the Stand Next? Strike Back Below!
Source: JoBlo.com

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7:47PM on 02/26/2013
He is Guilty...put him in Movie Jail for a few years. He is not a BAD actor, but he cant get out of the Straight to DVD Land...he has found residence in Straight to DVD Land....He needs to go into Movie therapy and get back into the high-level B list status.
He is Guilty...put him in Movie Jail for a few years. He is not a BAD actor, but he cant get out of the Straight to DVD Land...he has found residence in Straight to DVD Land....He needs to go into Movie therapy and get back into the high-level B list status.
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10:55AM on 02/26/2013

Guilty

Next?

Brendan Fraser
Orlando Bloom
Paul Walker
Rob Schneider
Jamie Kennedy
Matthew Lillard
Steven Seagal
Kevin James
Christian Slater
Owen Wilson

You pick one
Next?

Brendan Fraser
Orlando Bloom
Paul Walker
Rob Schneider
Jamie Kennedy
Matthew Lillard
Steven Seagal
Kevin James
Christian Slater
Owen Wilson

You pick one
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10:50AM on 02/26/2013

Guilty

Really feel bad for the guy, an Oscar winner to the straight to dvd rack. Does he even get invited to the Oscars anymore
Really feel bad for the guy, an Oscar winner to the straight to dvd rack. Does he even get invited to the Oscars anymore
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8:41AM on 02/26/2013

oh so guilty

this is what this article should be about; talent and potential squandered. and whether they have fallen too far for redemption. Cuba is the definition of an actor who had it all and pissed it away with poor choices and long absences. that single blip in American Gangster just shows he could still be turning out strong performances, but chooses to phone in lazy showings in bad scripts. i mostly blame his agent but, just like felony murder, Cuba is guilty by association or acquiescence
this is what this article should be about; talent and potential squandered. and whether they have fallen too far for redemption. Cuba is the definition of an actor who had it all and pissed it away with poor choices and long absences. that single blip in American Gangster just shows he could still be turning out strong performances, but chooses to phone in lazy showings in bad scripts. i mostly blame his agent but, just like felony murder, Cuba is guilty by association or acquiescence
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+1
3:12AM on 02/26/2013

Guilty

Guilty, what a giant slide downhill... Sigh.

Next week: Christian Slater, not even sure how I'd vote but mention it on the podcast and we'll all pump up the volume
Guilty, what a giant slide downhill... Sigh.

Next week: Christian Slater, not even sure how I'd vote but mention it on the podcast and we'll all pump up the volume
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+0
2:12AM on 02/26/2013

Guilty

I have no good justification for it. He's just guilty.

Next: John Woo
I have no good justification for it. He's just guilty.

Next: John Woo
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+0
2:06AM on 02/26/2013
Guilty. What happened Cuba? You're an Oscar winner with a history of great films, and then all of a sudden...Seriously, what happened to this guy. I always liked Cuba, and so I really can't explain what happened that made his career end up in the DTD field. I thought he was good in Red Tails, but that movie overall was unremarkable.
Guilty. What happened Cuba? You're an Oscar winner with a history of great films, and then all of a sudden...Seriously, what happened to this guy. I always liked Cuba, and so I really can't explain what happened that made his career end up in the DTD field. I thought he was good in Red Tails, but that movie overall was unremarkable.
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12:19AM on 02/26/2013

guilty

Jon Voight said this on Piers Morgan after the Oscars. "When you win an Oscar you have to be careful about your choices because they are going to say 'Starring the Academy Award winning Jon Voight' in the trailer. After I won my Oscar I looked for better roles but then I thought I was being too choosy so I decided to go the other way and I did Anaconda and I didn't think they were going to say 'Starring the Academy Award winning Jon Voight' in the trailer but they did!" Cuba Gooding Jr. (and
Jon Voight said this on Piers Morgan after the Oscars. "When you win an Oscar you have to be careful about your choices because they are going to say 'Starring the Academy Award winning Jon Voight' in the trailer. After I won my Oscar I looked for better roles but then I thought I was being too choosy so I decided to go the other way and I did Anaconda and I didn't think they were going to say 'Starring the Academy Award winning Jon Voight' in the trailer but they did!" Cuba Gooding Jr. (and Halle Berry for that matter) won an Academy Award and went on to do shit and you go to movie jail for that.
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11:55PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

As I have stated before, yes, it's possible that Mr. Gooding simply isn't getting any good parts coming his way, but it's because it's quite clear the man has stopped trying. He hasn't seen to keen on trying to get back to the A list, and that's why he's guilty.
As I have stated before, yes, it's possible that Mr. Gooding simply isn't getting any good parts coming his way, but it's because it's quite clear the man has stopped trying. He hasn't seen to keen on trying to get back to the A list, and that's why he's guilty.
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+0
11:20PM on 02/25/2013

death sentence

We must save him from him self. :(
We must save him from him self. :(
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10:03PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty!

Dude's been horrible nine out of ten times.
Dude's been horrible nine out of ten times.
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9:28PM on 02/25/2013
The guy has been more than horrible for years....GUILTY
The guy has been more than horrible for years....GUILTY
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9:08PM on 02/25/2013

GUILTY

dude had a perfect niche during his jerry maguire/as good as it gets phase, playing mild comic relief in light dramedies. that was his bread and butter. then he went the nic cage route post-oscar with disastrous results. (Chill Factor, anybody?) and it just got worse from there. The dude seems to fancy himself a bad ass and he simply isn't. Forrest Whittaker is on the same path to irrelevancy, btw.
dude had a perfect niche during his jerry maguire/as good as it gets phase, playing mild comic relief in light dramedies. that was his bread and butter. then he went the nic cage route post-oscar with disastrous results. (Chill Factor, anybody?) and it just got worse from there. The dude seems to fancy himself a bad ass and he simply isn't. Forrest Whittaker is on the same path to irrelevancy, btw.
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8:43PM on 02/25/2013
I mean he's guilty, but whatever reason I feel like its not his fault. Solid actor, just think some of the post maguire roles probably seemed good on paper, ie instinct, men of honor, but just didn't advance him any
I mean he's guilty, but whatever reason I feel like its not his fault. Solid actor, just think some of the post maguire roles probably seemed good on paper, ie instinct, men of honor, but just didn't advance him any
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8:33PM on 02/25/2013

GUILTY

He has got nothing going for him at this point. I liked Rat Race too, but he was one of the worst parts (other than the SmashMouth ending). It's like once he won the Oscar he thought he didn't have to try anymore.
Next week: Keanu Reeves or Shia Lebouf or my all time least favorite actress Drew Barrymore
He has got nothing going for him at this point. I liked Rat Race too, but he was one of the worst parts (other than the SmashMouth ending). It's like once he won the Oscar he thought he didn't have to try anymore.
Next week: Keanu Reeves or Shia Lebouf or my all time least favorite actress Drew Barrymore
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8:28PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

He still has potential to give a good performance, but he's not choosing the right parts/films. Guilty until he get back on track.
Next week I say Jason Statham.
He still has potential to give a good performance, but he's not choosing the right parts/films. Guilty until he get back on track.
Next week I say Jason Statham.
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+0
7:38PM on 02/25/2013

What's with the double and triple posting?

All I did was refresh the page and two more of my postings came up?!?! Sorry.
All I did was refresh the page and two more of my postings came up?!?! Sorry.
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+2
7:32PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

Looking on imdb.com, when is only good role in the last 12 years is a supporting role in "American Gangster" that screams guilty to me.
I remember a time when people said, "Cuba should've gotten a bigger part than Ben Affleck in "Pearl Harbor", he's way better than Affleck." Wow, did Affleck prove people wrong!
Looking on imdb.com, when is only good role in the last 12 years is a supporting role in "American Gangster" that screams guilty to me.
I remember a time when people said, "Cuba should've gotten a bigger part than Ben Affleck in "Pearl Harbor", he's way better than Affleck." Wow, did Affleck prove people wrong!
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+3
6:52PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

Looking on imdb.com, when is only good role in the last 12 years is a supporting role in "American Gangster" that screams guilty to me.
I remember a time when people said, "Cuba should've gotten a bigger part than Ben Affleck in "Pearl Harbor", he's way better than Affleck." Wow, did Affleck prove people wrong!
Looking on imdb.com, when is only good role in the last 12 years is a supporting role in "American Gangster" that screams guilty to me.
I remember a time when people said, "Cuba should've gotten a bigger part than Ben Affleck in "Pearl Harbor", he's way better than Affleck." Wow, did Affleck prove people wrong!
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6:47PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

Put Johnny Knoxville on the stand next!
Put Johnny Knoxville on the stand next!
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6:36PM on 02/25/2013
Guilty all the way. The guy hasn't done anything good since "Instinct" with Sir Anthony Hopkins.
Guilty all the way. The guy hasn't done anything good since "Instinct" with Sir Anthony Hopkins.
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5:58PM on 02/25/2013
Guilty. For SNOW DOGS alone, guilty.

Regarding the tidbit for next week's defendant, I want to throw out the idea of bringing the Academy of Motion Pictures to trial for Oscar snubs and baffling award wins. The thought occurred to me with Affleck's snub for Best Director this year. It's just one in a long line of WTF award decisions in the 85 years of the Oscar's existence.
Guilty. For SNOW DOGS alone, guilty.

Regarding the tidbit for next week's defendant, I want to throw out the idea of bringing the Academy of Motion Pictures to trial for Oscar snubs and baffling award wins. The thought occurred to me with Affleck's snub for Best Director this year. It's just one in a long line of WTF award decisions in the 85 years of the Oscar's existence.
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5:58PM on 02/25/2013
GUILTY.

Guy hasn't done anything good in years!!!
GUILTY.

Guy hasn't done anything good in years!!!
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5:53PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

Lock him up and throw away the key.
Lock him up and throw away the key.
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5:46PM on 02/25/2013

Not Guilty

The man isn't a criminal of film, simply irrelevant. Unless you want to arrest him for some embarrassing commercials. There are actors I actively wish would go away. Cuba? I mean, sometimes he opens his mouth a little too wide, like at the 2009 Academy Awards when talking about Robert Downey Jr., (it didn't seem provoked by the Radio remark), but overall, he's like Val Kilmer only worse. I'd call it sad if I wasn't so used to it.
The man isn't a criminal of film, simply irrelevant. Unless you want to arrest him for some embarrassing commercials. There are actors I actively wish would go away. Cuba? I mean, sometimes he opens his mouth a little too wide, like at the 2009 Academy Awards when talking about Robert Downey Jr., (it didn't seem provoked by the Radio remark), but overall, he's like Val Kilmer only worse. I'd call it sad if I wasn't so used to it.
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-4
4:56PM on 02/25/2013

Not Guilty

I'll tell you what... he almost inexplicably appears in crap film after crap film, but he is always the best part of those films. Cuba is one of those actors who can make even the stinkiest script work with a good performance. Wish he had a better agent or whatever, but the guy's got magic talent.
I'll tell you what... he almost inexplicably appears in crap film after crap film, but he is always the best part of those films. Cuba is one of those actors who can make even the stinkiest script work with a good performance. Wish he had a better agent or whatever, but the guy's got magic talent.
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4:38PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

Only because he hasn't been in anything decent since Jerry Maguire. Guess it's just that so called suporting actor curse.

Next should be John Cusack, have you seen The Raven? Damn that sucked!

Also quit putting movie icons like DeNiro & Pacino, who have been well established for years on the stand, it's pointless
Only because he hasn't been in anything decent since Jerry Maguire. Guess it's just that so called suporting actor curse.

Next should be John Cusack, have you seen The Raven? Damn that sucked!

Also quit putting movie icons like DeNiro & Pacino, who have been well established for years on the stand, it's pointless
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+5
3:21PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

Much as I liked his early work, he's just done nothing worth watching for as long as I can remember. I can't see that changing so a spell behind bars may be just the tonic he needs. What Dreams May Come is also one of the most depressing films I ever watched.
Much as I liked his early work, he's just done nothing worth watching for as long as I can remember. I can't see that changing so a spell behind bars may be just the tonic he needs. What Dreams May Come is also one of the most depressing films I ever watched.
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2:48PM on 02/25/2013

I love Rat Race.

But the dude is guilty.
But the dude is guilty.
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1:34PM on 02/25/2013

Not Guilty

I would like to point out that he was the only good part of "Pearl Harbor". Yes his movies recently have sucked, but i dont really blame the guy too much. I blame him for "Radio" and thats about it. And i liked "Rat Race"
I would like to point out that he was the only good part of "Pearl Harbor". Yes his movies recently have sucked, but i dont really blame the guy too much. I blame him for "Radio" and thats about it. And i liked "Rat Race"
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1:33PM on 02/25/2013

GUILTY

Guilty, jailed, electrocuted, buried....
Guilty, jailed, electrocuted, buried....
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1:29PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

I don't think Cuba Gooding jr has the capability of making a film better anymore.
I don't think Cuba Gooding jr has the capability of making a film better anymore.
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12:49PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty!

What Dreams May Come??? Rat Race?????? Men of honor????????? No way! Guilty!
What Dreams May Come??? Rat Race?????? Men of honor????????? No way! Guilty!
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12:45PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty.

He's guilty. But he is an actor I wouldn't mind, along with Val Kilmer make a comeback.
He's guilty. But he is an actor I wouldn't mind, along with Val Kilmer make a comeback.
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12:27PM on 02/25/2013
Guilty. Probably one of the more unfortunate examples of the "Oscar curse". From that shiny statuette to slumming it in awful, awful direct-do-DVD "action films" - he's fallen quite a long way.
Guilty. Probably one of the more unfortunate examples of the "Oscar curse". From that shiny statuette to slumming it in awful, awful direct-do-DVD "action films" - he's fallen quite a long way.
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12:10PM on 02/25/2013

Guilty

too much talent to be doing what he has, the man needs to spend some hard time behind bars and get himself back on track
too much talent to be doing what he has, the man needs to spend some hard time behind bars and get himself back on track
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12:03PM on 02/25/2013

Not Guilty

Even though not all of his movies recently have been good he has been in some great movies over the course of his career as mentioned above. And he is still a great actor. Heck even some of his direct to DVD movies are very good entertainment.
Even though not all of his movies recently have been good he has been in some great movies over the course of his career as mentioned above. And he is still a great actor. Heck even some of his direct to DVD movies are very good entertainment.
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11:59AM on 02/25/2013
He's forever stuck in the DVD bin, isn't that a fate worse than Movie Jail?
He's forever stuck in the DVD bin, isn't that a fate worse than Movie Jail?
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