Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Knocked Up: Knock it off!

So we went to this movie Tuesday night, you know, the "great" funny film riding high on the directing success of "40 Year Old Virgin."

If you plan to see it, and if you loved "40 Year Old..." then you may find this one amusing too. So please don't read my rant below and ruin it for yourself.

However, comma, if you are the kind of person who is sick of the slide down the crudity slope, then this rant's for you.

First off: I'm flat out sick of story lines that feature dumb, ugly guys getting smart pretty women. Please. The only movie that reversed this trend was "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" and the main difference is that at least the female protagonist IS smart and funny. Instead, male fantasy reigns in these sexual slapstick films - smart successful women are able to "see" good in schlubs. Uh, as unlikely as John Corbett falling for Nia Vardalos.

Second-atully: Jokes about masturbation and its, uh, results are just not funny. Period. Speaking of... How about we start a slew of female films that make jokes about tampons and bloody menstrual pads? Egg-zactly.

Thirdfully: Will we never, ever see a film that shows a side of birth I can actually relate to? Not every female in history has screamed for drugs at the moment the head crowns. Can you spell: t-i-r-e-d, t-e-d-i-o-u-s, overdone? Why convince the next generation of mothers-to-be over and over again that birth is the worst experience a woman could ever have? My daughters (who were born naturally at home) already think they want to be knocked out and totally under before they give birth just from Friends reruns. Puh-lease!

Natural birth could be jaw-hanging open funny, you know. Imagine a woman enjoying birth, finding it thrilling, stimulating, sensual, almost to the point of achieving ::gasp:: orgasm as the baby slides out the chute? See, I told you your jaw would hang open. Follow it up with the midwife serving up placenta soup postpartum. Yeah, funny, I swear. And as gross as every other sordid male activity in this weird film.

Fourth up: Bongs are not funny. Drugs are not funny. Schrooms are flat out scary. And no, just because you enjoy getting high every single day of your life doesn't make it acceptable behavior if you're a candidate for the future husband and father of your family.

Pleading the fifth: Clubbing when you're married without your husband is bizarre... and wrong, said the postmodernist.

Sexy six: Porn sites are also not funny.

Seventh: This film couldn't decide if it was a screed on married life or an embrace of conception to birth of an unwanted pregnancy. Marriage looked pretty tough in this film... and I can imagine many arguments about "who was right" in each marital crisis erupted on drives home.

Eight is enough: The redeeming aspect of this film: Pro, pro, pro, pro-life. Totally. Unequivocally. From the splitting cell to the first ultrasound at six weeks to every ultrasound and baby kick thereafter, to the rejection of a grandmother's suggestion to abort, to everyone's celebration of the baby... Yes! That, my friends, was the movie's one triumph.

Oh and the acting by Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann totally entertained me. I like both of them so well as actors.

patooey. I took multiple showers to cleanse myself after this one.

I blame "Something about Mary." Good God! Must I know every detail of male private sexual practices? Is there nothing sacred or secret any more? File this one under "I didn't want to know..."

The end.

Ha, I just found this perfect review of the movie. Fits my thinking to the tee. Amazing when you find someone who understands what you felt and then writes it so well.


Ampersand said...

Way-ull, at least you got a funny blog post out of it?

No, that kind of humor is not for me. Not that I'm above profanity or crudity...nope. I laugh at that every day.

Just not those kinds of movies. Why? Because, like you said, they are too far below the acceptable stupidty level.

brian said...

I still haven't see the "40 Year Old Virgin". I hated "Something About Mary". So, I'll definitely be taking a pass on this one.

Great post, though Julie. Sorry you had to endure the movie.


Dave said...

Very interesting reflections on this movie that has been pushed to all levels of the mass audience, apparently. I've been drawn into its orbit because I heard the dialogue writing is not just good, it's "instant classic." And it's supposed to be incredibly funny, entertaining and all that. I've also read some critiques along the lines that you mention here - particularly that it's heavily tilted toward the guy's perspective and utterly implausible. The vulgarity and raunchy sex/drug jokes are practically to be expected for this genre, these times and in order to register with the target audience of 20-somethings. I'm not surprised that it offended your "mom" sensibilities.

I know of several young women who became pregnant outside of marriage, through sometimes casual, sometimes more serious, relationships with guys that they knew in their hearts were not really the men they could either spend their lives or raise their children with. A very tough dilemma, but real, and for the most part, I think they made the right decisions. I think the film could have scored a bit higher on the relevance/substance meter though it may not have been as uproariously funny to many film-goers if they had made Ms. Heigl's part more grounded in the kind of decisions that a woman of her potential would really make in such circumstances.

I went to a movie the other day and thought about going to this one. But something averted me away and I went to see "Hot Fuzz" instead. It was funny, entertaining and worth my time and money. For what that's worth to ya!

Steve said...

I have sent your name in to Focus on the Family for their movie review staff. If that does not give you a rash, nothing will. You are great!

Dave said...

I'm not so sure that Focus on the Family will be eager to distribute all of Julie's reviews... Her views on, say, Brokeback Mountain don't exactly line up with their agenda!

Sentient Marrow said...

Huh. I am actually surprised you paid money to see that movie. We actually own "40 Year Old" virgin since my dh picked it up at a used dvd sale at the local store but I still haven't watched it. Just haven't had the time.

I see someone sent your name into FOF... that makes me crack up! I'd love to see you review movies for them.

Kansas Bob said...

I linked back to your review this morning at my place Julie. I appreciated the heads up and wanted to get the word out.

NoVA Dad said...

I actually thought the lady who had the lead in Greek Wedding was very attractive. I just wish they would do a movie that's reminiscent of my high school years, where the dorky guy DOESN'T get the good looking girl. Oh wait, they did make that movie -- Sixteen Candles, Breakfast Club, Weird Science, etc. Guess my wish won't fly:-)

Dancingirl365 said...

So tell us what you think, Julie! I began the review you linked, but like yours better! Much more entertaining! So I must be one of those who's "sick of the slide down the crudity slope"... I guess I won't be seeing this one.

SusansPlace said...

I'll stick with "Pirates".


jo(e) said...

You and I should go to the movies together -- I often leave with that kind of rant. It drives everyone around me crazy.

I saw the preview for the movie and gave it a thumbs down without even seeing it.