Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Simpsons Movie

I realize this movie came out like a thousand years ago, but now that I can actually write about it, spare me that one indulgence. As a Simpsons geek since has far as I can remember (literally the show started when I was all but six), I ventured into the theater with excitement and trepidation-- would this be the zenith experience of all time, or an invaluable waste that damaged my entire eighteen year geek obsession?!?!? To my delight the film was hilarious from start to finish and stated true to The Simpsons motto of if it's not broke, don't fix. Nothing earth-shattering, like an enlongated episode, but that's all we wanted, wasn't it?

The beauty of the show (and the movie) is that nothing really changes to the lives of Homer, Marge, Lisa, Bart, and Maggie, yet sight gags and political and social commentary can be gathered through the lives of this normal nuclear family. The story goes as follows-- Homer accidentially dumps toxic waste into Springfield Bay and single-handedly makes the town the most polluted city in America; President Schwartzenegger, puppeted by others puts the town in an enclosed dome. Homer and gang move to Alaska; Lisa falls for an young environmentalist, and Bart anguishes father issues and embarks on Ned Flander's more nurturing attentiveness. Not much, but lots. No other entertainment enterprise in history is more subversive than The Simpsons, and yet it's all one big-hearted laugh. The irony is that as much humor and sly jokery put into The Simpsons, jokes on politics and religion, is that it's all spent on Rupert Murdoch's dollar. You got us there!

And yet the movie has a heart, as the show always does, most evident in a moving monolouge spoken by Marge about the commitment and absolution of a marriage-- it's a scene that very real and geniune, and perhaps one of the most heartfelt speeches on the subject in modern movie history, not because it picks at the heartstrings, but because underlying the gaiety is a story show about a family. Bart's feelings of Homer as a father ring true as well, maybe Ned's nurturing nature are a better influence than Homer's constant buffonery?

So for a movie that that opens laughing at it's audience for the stupidity of paying for something one could get for free every week at home, The Simpsons Movie does do it's own name proud, to this geek's delight. Plus everyone loves Spider-Pig-- admit it! B+

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