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AMAD Special Tribute: Human Giant’s Aziz Ansari on MAC AND ME (1988)!!!

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. You know, I was 7 when this movie came out. Even I knew it was fucking ridiculous, but there is that nostalgia. I do remember watching this a lot on cable in my forming years. I probably should not try to rewatch as I have a feeling I wouldn’t be as kind to this one as I am to things like MONSTER SQUAD and FLIGHT OF THE NAVIGATOR, two movies I feel hold up just as well today as they did for me as a kid. A lot of you guys know Aziz Ansari from his great stand-up (he’s been touring with Patton Oswalt and that group… that’s where I first saw him, when they came through Austin… and Aziz dropped an AICN reference onstage!), but he’s probably most known for co-starring on MTV’s HUMAN GIANTS with Paul Scheer. Check out his site here! He agreed to do a piece for this tribute and suddenly got a Mac (andme) Attack! Now here’s Aziz on 1988’s best ET ripoff: Mac & Me!

Many of you know what a notorious piece of shit 1989’s Mac and Me is supposed to be. The film is an infamous E.T. ripoff (with product placement overload) about a young boy in a wheelchair, Eric, that is befriended by a strange alien, Mac. In addition to the product placement controversy, the main reason I was intrigued to watch this film because of the classic wheelchair scene, made most famous by Paul Rudd on Conan. If you haven’t seen it, please for the love of God, watch it now:

That clip is so bizarre and so hilarious, I had to see what else Mac and Me had up its sleeve. First off, let me say anyone that’s ever had a problem with product placement in TV or film, stay the fuck away from Mac and Me or your head might explode. Just imagine if Ronald McDonald molested the movie E.T. while he drank an inordinary amount of Coca-Cola and that’s how you get the script for Mac and Me. The Coke and McDonald's plugs (they are the two primary backers) are not subtle in the least bit. Aliens and kids are drinking Coke like nobody's business in this thing and lines like, “This must be like what they drink on their home planet!” are uttered with no remorse. The most ridiculous of these moments happens in a scene in a cave when aliens are HEALED BY FUCKING COCA-COLA. Aliens are sick. The kids run to the van and get 2 cans of Coca-Cola. The aliens drink it and then instantly feel better. Afterwards, the kids have to race to a gas station to get more Coke because the two cans ran out and it’s the only thing that can save them! Yes, this was actually filmed and it happens in a movie.

Product placement with no holds barred

The basic plot is standard E.T. ripoff: 1) Young alien gets to earth and is separated from family 2) Alien escapes evil NASA scientists types - In the get away scene, there is a small cameo from a young Danny Cooksey (aka Budnick from “Salute Your Shorts” and John Connor’s arcade buddy from T2) - If you look hard enough, there must be a few crossover extras from evil NASA dudes from Flight of the Navigator and maybe even a few NOVA scientists from Short Circuit 3) Young kid starts noticing weird things and no one believes him - In a great/really stupid scene, Eric confirms his suspicions of the creatures existence by capturing him in a vacuum cleaner by luring him with Coke and then reversing the vacuum to shoot him back out. Somehow, the little girl who's his neighbor gets strapped on to the vacuum cleaner and goes up the ceiling. Unfortunately this clip is not on YouTube and I'm too lazy to do it myself, but this screen grab should give you an idea of just how stupid this looks in execution.

4) His cooler, older brother believes him, but mom still doesn’t 5) Mom starts believing around the same time the evil NASA dudes are hot on the trail, kids start taking alien out in disguises. - Particularly awesome in this phase of the movie is a car chase scene with the NASA guys trailing Eric on his wheelchair on the highway. To be crystal clear, you see a kid traveling speeds upwards of at least 45 mph in his wheelchair. He even goes so far as to pull a Marty McFly at one point and grab the back of a truck and hold on for speed!

Wheelchair highway race? Yes, please.

- The highlight though is a truly insane indoor/outdoor synchronized breakdancing scene that takes place (where else?) in a McDonald’s. Also in this scene, we have a very strange cameo from Ronald McDonald himself. Watch this shit:

6) Aliens/kids on the run. NASA dudes occasionally shoot at kids/aliens, mom screams hysterically reminding them “Those are kids!!!” - This is also where they find the rest of Mac's family and "heal them" with Coke. However, they run out and when they go to the gas station to re-up, the family takes off to a grocery store and goes for the goods, leading to a shootout with police!

7) Boy “dies,” but aliens bring him back to life. 8) Aliens are safe, forgiven by the government, and become U.S. citizens. Whoa what the fuck? They become American citizens?? YES! The aliens are sworn in, Short Circuit 2 style:

God bless the poor souls who had to spend time in those awful costumes.

The alien family then drives away in a pink Cadillac while the kid alien is chewing gum and blows a huge bubble that says “WE’LL BE BACK!”


Needless to say, they did not come back. Mac and Me is a truly unique chapter in the book of piece of shit cinema. You can probably gather what you need from the YouTube clips, but if you really need to get your fix, it won’t disappoint. Aziz

Thanks, Aziz! We have two more AMAD Tributes left, one from a horror director and one from a well known… well, you’ll see. Previous A Movie A Day Tributes: Edgar Wright discusses 1971's VIRGIN WITCH
Rian Johnson discusses 1971’s A NEW LEAF
Randy Cook on 1963’s DONOVAN’S REEF

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