This archived article was written by: Leland Lobato
Editor’s note: This story was inadvertently not continued in the Nov. 2 issue. The story is re-printed in its entirety.
So often in my life I have a story idea just before, during, or after I consume some dead, charred animal flesh. I’m a carnivore, sue me. The Latest flashing of the light bulb over my head occurred just after lunch with some friends when someone mentioned the movie Bench Warmers.
Recalling all the hilarious events in the movie and laughing quite a bit, someone mentioned that the movie received bad reviews. I was astounded. How could anyone man, woman or child find anything but pure, wholesome goodness in this film? When I asked this, I was told that, apparently, it was given bad reviews because the humor was not intelligent or some such nonsense.
I say that is nothing but pure (insert expletive of your choice). A person that would write into the script a midget that makes peanut butter statues in his little cardboard castle in the basement, can be considered nothing less than brilliant. Brilliant I say, brilliant! (Imagine me standing up shaking my fist in the air ever so slightly as I say this, but under no circumstances is anybody to imagine me in a tutu, lest I become irritated)
Now it is not this review of this movie that I have an issue with. It is the whole concept that everything has to meet certain expectations of what some people think makes a movie, or what have you, good.
Why? What about a movie measures whether or not it is below a certain level of so called “intelligence?” Furthermore, just because something resides below that level, exactly what measure is there as to the quality, how good or bad it is? I can understand if a person does not like party-style movies or fart jokes, any of the National Lampoon movies being an example of this, however that does not mean they are bad movies or of a lesser quality.
Sex, drugs, juvenile antics, immature jokes, stoner flicks and other related subjects seem to be what get most of the critic’s undies all bunched up. From what I can tell, the thing people get upset about is that these productions are a bit on the crude side. These movies are offensive to certain people and/or groups. Some of them are offensive to all people and groups.
From what I can tell the major problem critics, and some people have with these sort of films is that they are a bit on the crude side. But so what? If you are one of the people that get offended by a movie, don’t watch that movie. Problem solved. Now people that like that sort of thing can enjoy their movies in peace and those that do not can also. Then we can all hold hands and go out for ice-cream.
Maybe the movie is not a comedy, it could be one of those gangsta-style movies, or just a straight up action film. You know what I’m talking about, one of those in-your-face shoot ’em up, fast paced, action-packed movies with not a lot in the way of story telling but the bad guy gets his ass kicked by the buff hero who can strike a killer pose while a bunch of random objects explode in a spectacular manner. What is wrong with that?
What if the movie features a character that is not too much in the brains department? Possibly they may just not understand exactly how the world works or are a little bit slow. Watch the poor guy/gal wander about their particular environment engaging in various misadventures where hilarity is sure to ensue. At least some of us might find it hilarious.
These movies are intended for everyone to enjoy for a couple of hours regardless of the genre. If not everybody was entertained then we can just chalk that up to an “oh well” moment. Better luck next time. I would like to point out that previews showing people what a movie is about and what the content may be. If you see a preview and think it is something you don’t want to watch then that is fine, don’t watch it.
I like witty, intelligent dialogue as much as the next person. I enjoy things that provokes thought and brings emotions. I like a movie to have meaning, be well thought out and have a good story and/or characters. I like a movie to make me consider different aspects of life and to want to engage in conversations or debate with others.
On the other hand, I like to watch a guy in a movie get kicked in his baby making mechanism every now and again. Not only that, but to have it happen for no discernible reason. It makes me laugh.
I am all for the so-called intelligent film making, but also enjoy movies of other genres. There are more than just a certain type of people in the movie-going world, but most critics, do not seem to be aware of this. That is why there are so many types of films being made that seem to pander to the masses. People enjoy them, there is nothing wrong with that.
I know many proponents of the classier, or more enlightened forms of the movie-making genre would say that it’s better to broaden one’s horizons and blah, blah watch these types of movies that involve brainpower and such.
I say yes, broaden those horizons and watch the mindless beer guzzling, vomiting, party films as well as the serious, Oscar-worthy, films.