Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Things that make me laugh

I don’t think I ever stopped laughing during fight club. It was my second time to watch fight club so i got all of the humor in it. The movie offers a non-stop satirical action and overzealous man comedy. The contrast between the two main characters is just unreal. I just think that this movie holds the formula to dirty masculine satirical humor. One of the funniest lines in the movie for me was when the Narrator said to Tyler "I wanted to destroy something beautiful." It was a gross moment but I think it was put there to show the idioticness of violence.

A movie that I have referenced once before that complete went over the top is Austin Powers. Austin Powers is clearly poking fun of Austin Powers but it is able to not go too outlandish. I loved fat bastard and mini-me. It is one of my generations best contributions to film I think. They kept making them and I think the humor kept up in all of them. You had to have watched bond films to understand the comedy.

I think an essential part of fight club is that you must watch it twice to get all of the comedy. This is very rare in movies. Other movies have other required movies you must watch to understand them like Austin Powers and the Bond films. The first one that really pops up in my head is the scary movie series. I was not a fan but their comedy was really based off of all the latest headline scary moves. The most iconic one of them must have been Scream or I know what You did Last Summer.

When I was around 13 my friends and I made a spoof of scream. I watched it just the other day and I couldn’t help but laugh. I guess this was just something of the time. They still try to make spoofs like the new Dance Movie. I think that most of the funny parts just get shown in the previews.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

The first rule of fight club is that FIGHT CLUB IS AWSOME!!!!!!!!!

I watched Fight club when i was a freshman in high school. The difference between me now and then is night and day. I did not like Fight Club when I first saw it, but I really missed out on all of the little things I loved about it. The only thing I took from it the first time was there was a man with a split personality that liked to make soap from human body fat. The movie is so much more than that though. I found the movie this time to be funny, poetic and completely insane. It just really took me by surprise how much I like it.The movie was filled with comedy. The one main character jests between his split personalities like two sport commentators. They even make reference to the film at least once. The movie is spliced with little porn clips. The movie I think though is better the second time through because you get the joke. When you understand that he is two people you can enjoy the movie in a different way. I think not liking it the first time I saw it was what made it so good. My low expectations were exceeded!I think that the main character is really cool. Tyler is cool and suave but the narrator is witty. They are great contrast to each other. It is like the girlfriend said "Dr. Jeckle and Mr. Asshole". The narrators commentary really adds to the contrast with Tyler. The narrator is just so necrotic that it is funny. I think some of the values of Tyler are suppose to be making fun of bad guys with stupid philosophies. Tyler's philosophy is unclear and calls into question "is there actually a point to all of this." It makes me wonder was he just trying to contrast every characteristic of the Narrator or was he truly methodical with his planning. Either way this movie is going to leave you thinking and that is a very good thing.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Tarantino's Legacy

Quinton Tarantino revolutionized the film industry by introducing different aspects of film that have never been explored. He gave us story lines told that were told not in the traditional continuous style. He was very interested in going from the past to present to the future and long dialog scenes. His style had shots that made the room seem humungous and he loves the dialog in-between. He wonders what the bad guys talk about when they are not being criminals. Unfortunately he is also in love with excessive profanity not because it is real but because it is an exaggeration.

His ideas sparked a movement around the turn of the century. The most notable examples of this are: his own films like Pulp Fiction. It is not one of my personal favorites but it has a great dance scene that brought back John Travolta’s career. And also has one of the funniest lines that you could ever use in guess who "Does he look like a Bitch!" But the movie has a story line that is told from multiple perspectives. The vulgarities in the movie are off the chain. But it goes down as a very notable movie in my book.

I believe that his trends are still around with the television series Lost. Half the show is flashbacks. Something that is even more messed up is sometimes they are in each other’s flashbacks. But now the series has seen fit not to just flash back but to actually go back in time.

Another movie that was told from multiple perspectives was Sin City. I think that how both of the directors use time is similar and their excessive use of gore. The movie was a big hit. I heard they were going to make a sequel but I haven’t seen anything at comingsoon.net so I will not get my hopes up.

I think that Tarantino has had a profound effect in film I personally have not seen many of these films because I was very young while his movie revolution was going on and his films are geared for adults.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Hip and Square

Hip Square

1.Twilight 1. Harry Potter

2. Organic 2. High Yield

3. Going Green 3. Littering

4. Competency 4. Style

5. Pre-Med 5. Philosophy

6. The Daily Show 6. Cross Fire

7. Old SNL 7. Mad TV

8. Vintage 8. Impersonations

9. The Common Good 9. Individualism

10. Facebook 10. MySpace

11. Texting 11. Email

12.Riding a Bike 12. Driving

13. Cooking 13. Eating out

14. Target 14. Wal-Mart

15.Blue Ray 15. DVD

The going green movement has brought on large amount of change. The change is a change in ideology. We as Americans are much more focused on the individual but by placing personal needs above the collective. We have come to realize that if we are going to have a world for future generations we must think about the collective good. Such a shift has been placed on the individual level by stating that one person’s actions affect the other. So for us to make a difference we must work as individuals for the collective good. This is a very important shift one that has many different repercussions. One of the first areas we see this is the conservation of fossil fuels. People have switched from two-ton pickups to the Toyota Prius. Many in the city have begun ridding the bike to work instead of driving. When people go to the grocery store they buy organic and locally grown products to help support local farmers and not poison their children. I don’t think that we have seen the end of the social change from going green.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Paris is Burning is a documentary that highlights the drag culture of the New York Balls. The documentary is ground breaking. I liked that it picked such a controversial subject as drag queens to highlight. The style of the documentary reminds me of The Office and Drop Dead Gorgeous.

The Office imitates the documentary style of television series. They have fixed camera angles, refer to the camera crew and have interviews. The style of film is worked into the comedy. The writers base the show around the premise of documentary style and try to build characters off of that idea. For example Michael Scott is constantly aware of the camera and is constantly pursuing the audience to think of him in a certain way. He likes to make himself appear to be a good boss, caring friend and a responsible adult, but in all reality he is probably one of the most useless people on the face of the planet. I love the show for their documentary style. I think it adds character and wit to the premise of the show.

Drop Dead Gorgeous is a hilarious mockumentary about a high school beauty pageant. The story is really funny because they are doing the filming like a documentary but they are also trying to poke fun at the northern white trash stereotype. I think the movie’s biggest laugh is when the mom gets her hand melted around a beer can. The highlight of this film I think is the importance people place on being beautiful. It tries to show that beautiful is really ugly and vice versa.

Another aspect of Paris is Burning that I really do like is that it is right up in your face. You have no room to try to sidestep the issues of the day. By placing a face and background to drag queens it forces people to face their stereotypes of others. Another documentary film-maker that tries to do this is Michael Moore. I don’t really like all of his movies but he is attempting to do what few will. He is questioning the status quo and challenging individuals to look past the media and dig for the truth. I am not saying he is an advocator of truth but he has inspired me more than once to check the facts. Another that is challenging this is Morgan Spurlock. The movie Super Size Me challenged my views on fast food and the harmful effects of it. In just a month he was at risk of organ failure from just eating McDonald’s food.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Walking the plank (runway)

Drag is something that I have had some experience with. I was an actor at Subiaco Academy where there was no girls. I was cast a majority of the time as a girl. I had to study mannerisms, tone, makeup and their clothing. I also had to play about three different races of women. It is not an easy job to fit into the cloths or naturally pull feminine mannerisms off. I had to practice for about a month to master walking in high heels.I have a lot of respect for what the drag queens were pursuing.

They are some of the few individuals that know exactly what they want and are going after it with everything they have. How rare is that?

As college students we try every day to figure out what we want, who we want to be and how to make it happen. It takes some of us many years to decide and I personally change my mind quite frequently. They know what they want and have most of society telling them that they can’t have it and won’t be accepted. They have a lot more guts than most people do. As soon as many people are reprimanded by society they will just give up. What the drag queens are doing is brave. Though there is not as much opposition as there once was, many still disapprove of drag queens. Plus the rejection by their family and sometimes even the drag community must alienate them to an unimaginable extreme.

An aspect of the drag culture that is especially intriguing is the balls. Paris is Burning did a great job in highlighting exactly what a balls are. The individuals have to get up and parade their best in front of the only social acceptable place they may know. They can be met with a number of apprehensive people. This is like walking the plank for some. One the interviewers had not walked yet and was very nervous about it. The sheer process of it all takes massive amounts of time and effort. Another one of the people worked on sewing a tank top for an hour. It was said in the film that some people don’t have enough money to spend on food and cloths so they chose their garb. That is true devotion.

I believe that the drag, gay, and transvestite culture has had a profound effect on society. One of my favorite comedies growing up was Will & Grace. I grew with more acceptance of the gay culture than my family ever did. I hope that the next generation will treasure all that the gay culture has done in pop culture and someday they can study in history books and it not be looked down upon.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Oh yes! Satire!

Robocop reminded us of what satire is. The director Paul Verhoeven showed us the dangers of letting ideas go too far. Reganomics was supposed to allow the free market to flourish and to squash the rise in big government. The idea was interesting and paved with good intentions, but as the movie displayed, it could become dangerous very quickly. There have been a few satirical works that have come to criticize ideas that could lead to our demise. I will go over a good few and try to relate them to the issues they each pertain to.

The news is a little over the top and people know it. As John Stewart said on CNN's "Crossfire" "This is not news, it is theater!" Robocop did make fun of the news and how it had just become another useless form of media. The Onion is a great source of satire. They are poking fun at social norms and really focus on the problems that mainstream society is overlooking. Hayley Sebourn has a good example in her blog. Other great sources of satire if you are a news junkie is "The Daily Show" and the "Colbert Report." They are comedic geniuses. I do think that John Stewart knows his stuff. He has been on a kick here lately telling other news stations to cut the theatrics and just give us the unbiased news. His greatest moment is on "Crossfire" when he was begging "Stop! You are hurting America!"

Another great satire is from Paul Verhoeven is Starship Troopers. This movie is great and reminds me a lot of the book 1984 in that it shows the dangers of blind nationalism. The movie is a little less clear for some than Robocop but I think if they examine it the satire is there. One of the most comedic scenes is a movie that is quite similar to our WW2 films where the narrator is saying "Everyone is doing their part!" and the kids are killing cockroaches. The movie's message is hidden under a B action film just like Robocop. Starship Troopers calls into question the logic of a constant warring nation.

"Family Guy "is one of my favorite shows in the entire planet. The show is filled with satire and many vast exaggerations. The TV show has characters portraying different walks of life so that it can cover multiple issues. I think a good example would be the episode when Peter's dad is forced to retire. The episode does battle with issues of ageism, religious fundamentalism and the generational gap. I would encourage it as a good intro into "Family Guy."

We can never take ourselves too seriously. I think the events that occurred after 9/11 have shown us that. The best example is the Patriot Act. Almost everyone was in favor of it, but during that time we went too far and now there are many comedy shows saying that. A good movie would be Team America. I think that satirical films remind us that we must look past the good intentions and see the consequences of our actions.