Saturday, August 25, 2007

Autumnal August, SUPERBAD and Other Unpopular Opinions

It’s 85 degrees, and humid as a cheesemonger’s armpit today. Back to normal for August.

For three days last week, northern New Jersey and much of the east coast became wrapped in the most unseasonable weather. In the midst of August, traditionally my most hated month… it felt like Autumn. It was gray and chilly and rainy. Tuesday the temperature hit a high of 59 degrees. It was glorious.

Of course, not everyone agreed with me. One of my coworkers referred to the weather as “gloomy.” Janice Huff, the meteorologist for WNBC in New York (aka TODAY SHOW Tryouts) was practically apologizing for the cool weather, promising that by the weekend, things would be “better.” Why do weather people always have to editorialize about the weather? Isn’t it all subjective?

I found the wind and the rain and the cool brisk and invigorating in a marked contrast to the stifling, oppressive, soul-sucking humidity of a dog summer day. But then again, I don’t like a lot of things that are popular.

Which brings us to SUPERBAD. Despite my ever-increasing distaste for Judd Apatow (don’t even get me started on the bullshit conservative fairy tale that was KNOCKED UP or the fucked up mixed message of THE 40-YEAR OLD VIRGIN), the fact that he didn’t write or direct SUPERBAD gave me false hope. I loved the ads for it, particularly the bit about Seth (Jonah Hill) and Evan (Michael Cera) declaring their best-friend-love for each other, capped with a “Boop!” on the nose. I was hoping for an atypical comedy about some awkward teens’ friendship during that key transition from high school to college. What I got was a typical comedy about teens trying to get laid, full of dick jokes and unfunny slapstick and characters so broad they might as well have been cartoons. Whoopee. It’s not hard to believe that Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg started writing this when they were kids.

I absolutely despised the entire half of the film that followed Fogell / McLovin (Christopher Mintz-Plasse, the Neo-Screech) and the fun-lovin’ cops on their booze-fueled escapades. The awkwardness of Evan quickly went from charming to annoying. And worst of all, Seth… is an asshole. He thinks nothing of using people (even his so-called friends) and doesn’t give a shit about anyone except himself (and Evan when he feels like it). His ultimate plan is to get the girl who seems to like him drunk so he can fuck her, and “make” her be his girlfriend for the summer so he, uh, has experience when he gets to college, where he thinks he’ll be able to fuck anyone he wants. What a winner. Why should I root for a lead character in a movie that I’d hate in real life? (And don’t tell me we’re not supposed to root for him; This ain’t ELEPHANT here).

Maybe my problem is that I didn’t spend every waking moment in high school trying to get laid or loaded (not that I was pursuing loftier goals), I just can’t relate to the notion that it’s what everyone did during their teenage years. I laughed out loud numerous times during SUPERBAD, but there were long stretches where everyone around me was in stitches while I sat in silence, kinda wishing I were home watching DAZED AND CONFUSED or RUSHMORE.

I’m also bemused by how excited people are about the Van Halen reunion. Um, Van Halen always sucked, regardless of its frontman. But again, I chant my mantra: “It’s All Subjective; It’s All Subjective; It’s All Subjective….”

COMING SOON: A 40-year old conundrum solved! Who were those mysterious twins and the spikey haired kid in A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS? The answer will astound you!

No comments: