Monday, March 10, 2008

Meet the Spartans *

Director: Jason Friedberg, Aaron Seltzer
Cast: Sean Maguire, Carmen Electra, Kevin Sorbo
The latest entry in the spoof genre takes on the Spartans from "300" to tell the story of Leonidas (Maguire) who under the threat of the Persian army led by Xerxes (Ken Davitian) gathers an army of thirteen men to fight them.
The Persian army though is made up of Transformers, urban dancers and Paris Hilton among others and the film's plot turns around how many pop culture references it can use and mock per scene.
There are awkward nods to the homoeroticism of "300" (and by casting hunks in leather thongs they aren't really solving that issue), an impossibly bad joke about "Spider-Man 3" and musical sequences that should feel insulting but are merely dull.
Let's ignore the fact that it's practically impossible for movies like this to stop being made (they are cheap and by attracting preteens often ensure average box office that always makes a profit).
It's also true that, despite tolerance claims, most of the subjects being made fun of, will be talked about outside without the film (even if it results nauseating to hear yet another Britney Spears joke).
And one can also argue that by the time films like this get to movie screens, there are newer objects of obssession that make most of the jokes irrelevant and dated.
But let's focus for once on the Imperialist irony that hovers over it all. For countries that are invaded by American trash cinema, going to a film like this requires a bit of knowledge.
Not that one must get the "American Idol" encyclopedia, but to laugh at the jokes one must first know what they're laughing at.
And for people who never get the joke, wouldn't it result embarrassing to realize how there is so much to be laughed at within the world's superpower?
As if their foreign policy and their politics weren't cause enough of chuckles, they have decided to export more reasons to make their foundations unstable.
They say laughing at yourself is a sign of modesty, "Meet the Spartans" is so full of itself that it is the perfect example of laughing at and not with something.

1 comment:

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