Monday, November 27, 2006

Kids' Movies That Aren't... and Veal

After Thanksgiving dinner the B&D and I went to visit some friends… they hosted a post-Thanksgiving desert party. You know, a couple of cocktails or glasses of wine, anything with chocolate (or rum), and some chit-chat. We brought the boy, although he was beginning to need his bed (not because he was slowing down, but because he was getting attitude).

One of my friends (my friends known for extremely bad judgment) started to get cutesy and giddy talking about “Happy Feet” and how she cannot wait to see it. Clap, clap… oooh, oooh, oooh… blink, blink… I’m over 35 and I still act like a twelve year old. (It is funny because it’s true.) In any case I pointed out that the word about the film was that it is not a film for kids… I got looked at like I was painted blue and had just farted latex bubbles.

Apparently, Medved didn’t think the publicity for the movie did it any favors… he says the film is targeted to kids and families, however, he suggests the movie is too dark for young kids. I passed that information on to the B&D (who wanted to take the boy to see it). She read it and then looked for other reviews… then declared that not only will she not see the film she’ll make sure the boy doesn’t see it at all.

I mentioned this at the party. Really?!?!?! Why? Well, I didn’t say much, but another guy (who looked like he voted Socialist) said the film was apparently the animated equivalent to Al G*re’s An Inc*nven*ent Tr*th. My response was, “Even more reason to spurn the film.”

Lileks’ daughter, Gnat, saw the film over the weekend. How do I know?

From The Bleat!
Gnat went to see “Happy Feet” today with a friend; I was under the impression it was a movie about an oddball penguin who cannot sing but cuts the rug with amusing skill. I assume he is accepted at the end despite his idiosyncracies, since we need to learn that lesson from time to time. Every sixteen seconds, as it happens. If we do not remind everyone that it’s “okay” to be an individual we will all topple back into the gruel-colored sea of Conformity, waiting for Elvis to return from the dead and save us again. We’re always so close; it’s a miracle some people have the courage to leave the house with unpopular bands on their iPod, lest the Conformation suddenly strike before you can get home, and the grey-flannel-suit-clad Sameness Squad takes you aside to see if you’re listening to something other than a Clear-Channel approved song. We have a long way to go, of course, before we know we’re safe; I read the other day about a fellow who got a full-face tattoo and had troubles finding employment in the service industry. But he sounds like an individualist, you think. Alas: he used Maori imagery. Most people who get a full-face tattoo use Maori imagery. That’s right: conformists.

Anyway, the movie came down on the side of the little iconoclast, to my surprise. Cartoons usually preach giving in to the herd, the crowd, blending in, accepting the rules. You know, Felix or Bugs. I thought it was about dancing penguins, but it was actually about overfishing. To hear it recounted (by my wife, who endured the thing) it seems that the penguins were dying, a nice touch for a kid’s film, and the hero followed a fishing boat and ended up in a zoo then told everyone to stop fishing and so everyone stopped fishing and yay the day was saved.

Overfishing? I asked. They stopped overfishing?

No, they stopped fishing.

So now we have to apologize for serving fargin’ fish sticks, eh. Hell with it. Veal daily from now on. Veal for breakfast. Veal-O-Bits swimming in whale blubber.

I remember when animals were used as stand-ins for humans, to shed light on human behaviors and foibles; now animals are stand-ins for creatures more ethically advanced than humans. (See also, The Ant Bully. Or rather don’t; that movie said it was okay to be an individual as long as you were part of a collective, and no one ever had competing goals or ideas. Muddle-headed twaddle.) If the current filmmakers had made “Ol’ Yeller,” the dog would have been allowed to stay rabid and chew all the locals. Why, bitin’s what a dog does! And I wouldn’t say he was mad. Why, sometimes I think the crazy ones are the only sane folk around! And who are we to say what’s sane and insane, really, in a world where – AAHHH! JESUS CHRIST! HE BIT ME! GOD, GET HIM OFF!

The best part about the movies that celebrate the struggle of the individual, of course, are the blurbs: it’s the movie everyone’s talking about! Critics agree, “A Voice Alone” is a hit!
For tonight’s family meal? Veal!

Interestingly, my Earth muffin friend who wants to stave off looking her own age loves veal, but becomes conflicted whenever she eats it. She also enjoys pork, beef, fish, chicken, seafood, and other things that go with vegetables.

Perhaps there’s hope for her yet.


Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home