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Non-Review Review: Team America – World Police

There’s a strong argument to be made that Team America: World Police is perhaps the best comedy made in the past decade. It’s certainly the most politically astute, and certainly one of the more thoughtful commentaries on American foreign policy to emerge in the wake of 9/11. Like a lot of the work of Stone and Parker, it’s tone is incredibly juvenile and even puerile, with the pair never meeting a bad-taste gag that they don’t love. However, this decidedly low-brow sense of humour is coupled with a more sophisticated and sharp political wit that allows the movie to be topical without seeming preachy, observant without being heavy-handed, and veryfunny without ever being too earnest. That’s a winning combination.

Patriot Games…

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Meme of the Moment: Desert Island CD’s

This blog post is part of “Desert Island CD’s”, a blogging event being hosted by those gents over at Anomalous Material as a sort of a spiritual successor to last year’s “Desert Island DVD’s”. Check out the link above for everybody else’s list.

Movie soundtracks are a strange beast. They say that memory is most strongly associated with the sense of smell, but – since I guess we can’t smell movies outside of Hans Laube’s somewhat misguided “Smell-O-Vision” – I am never less than amazed at the capacity of a piece of music to take me back to a film. Whether it’s a piece of an orchestra score, a pop song featured in the background, an original composition for the film or even a piece linked to a particular trailer, film music has a strong tie to my memory. To show you that I am not kidding, thanks to the following truly corny international trailer, I can’t hear The Sun Always Shines on TV without thinking of Slumdog Millionaire. You may think I’m bluffing, but skip to about a minute into it.

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Is Four Lions This Year’s Team America?

We like to laugh at the things that really scare us – as if giggling in the face of death and destruction somehow removes them of their power. Or maybe it’s just an acknowledgment of the truly perverse sense of humour which underlines so many aspects of the modern world. Still, years after Team America: World Police demonstrated that nothing is truly sacred and gave us lines like ‘hey, terrorist, terrorise this!’ or ‘durka durka mohammed jihad’, it’s reassuring to know that the war on terror and religious fundamentalism aren’t taboo subjects. A comedy about a suicide bombing training camp, I’m quite interested to see how Four Lions turns out – if only for its fascinating pedigree.

A box office bomb or an explosive hit?

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My Top 50 Movies of the Decade…

Alright here it is, my top fifty films of the decade. I’ve decided to stop complaining about Donal Clarke’s list in the Irish Times and just let rip myself. There’s more than a few crazy choices down there, but – after a week in the works – I’m happy with it. I doubt that a lot of other people will be.

Like the Oscars, but... you know, better...

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