Massawyrm's Contractually Obligated DISASTER MOVIE Review!!!
Published at: Aug. 29, 2008, 8:18 a.m. CST by merrick
Hola all. Massawyrm here.
At this point I just feel like a fucking bully. Disaster Movie is like the mentally challenged kid climbing out of the short bus with a head brace and two inches of snot caked into a mustache above his malformed mouth. No one really expects anything of him. He’s just there and its best to ignore him and let him go to his life skills class and get a gold star for being able to hold it until he gets to the bathroom. But here I am, waiting for him to step off the bus to I can beat the shit out of the little moron. And you’re all here to watch.
Admit it. It’s why you clicked the link. You didn’t come here to find some deep explanation of the meaning of this film or to get my spoiler free reactions with which to help mentally prepare yourself for a great cinematic experience. You came here to watch me pulp that kid. Because he deserves it. So why review it? a few you are beginning to ask yourselves? Because you guys asked for it. In the 7 and a ½ years I’ve been doing this I have NEVER received so much mail in advance looking forward to a review as I have with this. As soon as the movie was even announced it started trickling in. E-mails, private messages, hell, people at screenings.
Meet the Spartans was the breaking point for Friedman/Seltzer. Up until then no one really cared that they were making the shittiest movies out there. Most critics didn’t even bother to see them. And it was hard to process once you did because it didn’t actually feel like a movie. It felt more like a very long, ill-conceived talent show skit at the company retreat. But now people are on to these guys. They know them by name. After I wrote my review of Spartans I got thank you mail, fucking THANK YOU MAIL, from members of the crew. People who worked on it, who were embarrassed by the experience but ultimately chose eating and paying rent over self-respect. And I admire that. No one, let me repeat that, no one mistakes these films for anything but what they are. Friedberg and Seltzer aren’t in any way talented. If they were they would have shown us a glimmer of some by now. They just have simply set the bar on their aspirations so low that they make films without pretension.
No one likes to feel stupid, especially not the morons and misfits that genetics and careful breeding have left behind. And really, that’s who this is for. And Friedberg and Seltzer know that. They take the time and care to explain every joke or reference that might be confusing. I mean who the fuck is that overweight bald guy with the bad mustache? Don’t worry, a character from the film is on their way to assist you by shouting “Hey, look, it’s Dr. Phil!” Wait, what’s the girl who played Brittany Spears in that Spartans movie doing in that bad wig and a pink jersey? “Hey, look, it’s Jessica Simpson!” “Oh my God look, Hannah Montana’s dead!” “Amy Winehouse?” “I’m Woof from American Gladiators!” You could make a drinking game out of these moments, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you have a liver like Artie Lange and have no plans on driving home.
And to make things even easier, very few of the jokes actually involve the movies in question. They are instead parodies of the trailers. Just in case you’ve been too busy rutting, cleaning up the trailer and watching pro wrestling to trouble yourself actually seeing the movies being spoofed – they’ve gone to the effort of making things as simple as possible so you don’t hurt that woozy, mullet covered little head of yours.
Moriarty said it best: these things are at best “pop culture yearbooks” to be enjoyed by those who simply want to see something referenced. They don’t actually feel the need to have you dissect it and find something funny about it. It feels more like a 90 minute version of that great old Chris Farley Chris Farley Show sketch. “Do you…do you remember that…that movie Batman the Dark Knight?” Yeah? “Heh. That was so awesome. Do you…do you remember Hannah Montana?” Yeah. “Good times.”
I mean, the bar was set so low this time around that I actually have to kind of praise something. There was a string of dialog making fun of Juno that really began to skirt the shores of real satire. When an underwear model starts hitting on little Juno she looks down and says “I haven’t seen a sixpack like that since a I shotgunned a Molsons at Lalapalooza last summer” and proceeds to follow that up with a string of obscure, witty references that feel like Diablo Cody herself got some extra rewrite work. And it begins to be a little scathing as it goes on and nails its point like good satire should. But then you begin to think “wait, who the fuck are these guys to bag on someone else’s dialog?” “Look! It’s a High School Musical!”
It’s clear that they’ve only seen three or four of the movies they’ve parodied by the time they got around shooting this thing (I shit you not, less than four months ago), and the ones they have seen they have little to say about. The bulk of the plot is Cloverfield without the monster, but they have nothing at all to say about it. They just really liked the plot enough to use it as the framework for a bunch of other jokes. The city is being ravaged by every disaster known to man, which allows them to pluck out disasters from movies that are very easy to poke fun at. Like Armageddon, Deep Impact, The Day After Tomorrow and Twister. One would think this thing would be loaded with Michael Bay slow-mo moments and people slowly outrunning flash freezes and floods and hell, with Cloverfield one could imagine a shakycam shot in which the cast on screen has to stop and puke from all the shaking. Something, anything more clever than The Guru Shitka and another fucking ridiculous dance off.
But at least Hollywood seems to be taking notice. When these two bozos first stepped on the scene it was with Alyson Hannigan, Eddie Griffin and Fred Willard in tow. Then it was Kal Penn and David Carradine in Epic Movie. By the time Meet the Spartans came around all they could scrape together was Carmen Electra and Kevin Sorbo. Well, Carmen Electra is back along with…Kim Kardashian…the woman who forced America to ask itself: which came first, the celebrity or the sex tape? There’s no one else recognizable in this at all, except the usual cast of MadTV misfits doing some of the world’s worst impressions. I swear to Christ, the next line Ike Barinholtz delivers should be about the night’s specials and what wines will go well with them.
You know, honestly, I don’t hate these guys anymore. I just feel kind of bad for them. I know a guy like this who looks at his limited success and thinks that his critics are full of shit as a result. I can only imagine that’s how these two guys sleep at night. What I hate is that they (and the studios that fund them) think that this is how stupid the youth of this country is. They honestly believe they have to spoon feed them their comedy. Sadly they’ve been just successful enough to kinda prove themselves right.
Until next time friends, smoke ‘em if ya got ‘em.