posted by Beth
I won this round of the movie tournament with a piece of trash (Kick-Ass), so I'm trying hard to redeem myself by curating seven movies that don't make us feel like washing our brains with soap afterward. I haven't succeeded, but that's because I'd have to choose all Buster Keaton movies to fully satisfy that criterion. The curated list is:
- Do the Right Thing
- Despicable Me
- The Kids are All Right
- Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
- Leon: The Professional
- Oceans (Disney's documentary)
At first I thought, "Why are people so excited about this movie?" Four academy award nominations? Best Picture and Writing? Seriously? It has way too many plot threads that aren't tied up (Laser's destructive friendship, Paul's genuine feelings for Jules, anything about Paul's future at all, Joni's relationship with Paul, Joni's advances toward her guy friend, Joni's lusty girlfriend), incomplete character development and motivation, and the coup de grace: nothing happens. Nothing but a lot of graphic sex that does not advance the plot one iota.
At some point we need to have a discussion about whether any overly graphic sex scenes in cinematic history have ever advanced the plot one iota.
But then I figured it out! I figured out why people are eating their poop (to paraphrase Eric) over The Kids are All Right. Or more specifically, I figured out who is eating their poop, besides a certain Lhasa Apso named Bella: it's movie industry people. Movie industry people who love themselves and their lives, and think the whole world revolves around them. They think they're so hip, writing about a lesbian family fighting to stay intact; writing a "day in the life" script in which people are struggling to remember why they love the people they love; writing about rich people in L.A.; including organic farming somewhere in the plot, and then ironically including the over-saturation of contemporary foodie-ism in the plot. This thing was so inbred — so Santa Monica and Venice and Mar Vista — even the college-bound protagonist ended up going away to a California college. The rest of the country rolls its eyes when we see this highly-specific southern California version of White People Problems on screen. Which only goes to show you who populates the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
And we can talk about the lame title later. Or not.