Miles on Movies


reviewed by R. Miles Mendenhall

Note: this follows the review of Ghost Rider

Speaking of lowbrow cultural motifs. Check out Mike Judge’s flawed effort to track the hypothetical consequences of our corporate mass culture. His portrayal of a future Social Darwinist dystopia may drag for much of the third act. But it is his attempt to caution us all about the horrific consequences of a world in which fast food, and franchised social services, are all that’s left for an economy. A world populated by the descendents of American (U.S.) couch potatoes with the collective average I.Q. of forty. The film has its hilarious and scary moments.

Luke Wilson and Maya Rudolph play the cryogenically preserved average, for our modern day, humans who end up being the smartest people in the future. This because the gene pool has been soiled by lumpen predominance in human reproduction.

What if the WWF and Monster Truck rallies were what stood in for social meaning? There’s a sudden death public execution / humiliation stadium sequence that answers the question, “What if monster machines and phallic imagery were combined to create the ultimate Monster Male Vehicles?”

The consequences of sport drink economic hegemony are fully explored. Available on DVD. Could his savage satire on corporate culture been part of why this film never got wide release in the theaters?

This is a very stupid film about the consequences of very stupid people taking over the world. So it is a flawed effort, but one worth noting for its attempt to warn us about the trajectory the human race may be on. But only if you’re a Social Darwinist Malthusian who profoundly dislikes and distrusts most other people. What else should one expect from the creator of “Beavis and Butthead”? Perhaps a film as cutting in its satire as his other notable work, “Office Space”?

And speaking of comic book adaptations. I’m jonesing for the release of “300” which interprets the Battle of Thermopylae via the visual art of Frank Miller. (“Batman: The Dark Knight Returns”, “Sin City”, “Daredevil”, etc.) The previews are amazing. This looks to be a testosterone fest with terrifying images of physically altered combatants in a grand gruesome grimoire extravaganza. Yeah! USA release date 3/9/07

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