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BG Falcon Media

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BG Falcon Media

The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Team America’ hilarious, unrefined

Trey Parker and Matt Stone have again come up with a brilliant and hilarious means for relaying their post-phallic humor, but their latest effort walks a fine line between evenly-distributed satire and civic irresponsibility.

The creators of “South Park” and “That’s My Bush” present to us their second high-budget comedy for the big screen that basks in its own absurdity by taking marionettes to places they’ve never gone before. “Team America: World Police” will upset certain pacifists and war hawks alike while pleasing those who seek relief from the overloaded importance that is placed upon popular figures and highly publicized organizations.

Parker and Stone build from the old television series “Thunderbirds,” which pitted smooth-operating marionettes against international villains.

I won’t reveal much detail about Team America’s particulars, because I believe the shock value derived from the first encounter with the film will prove to be its biggest asset and most enjoyable element for the audience.

“Team America” is a special forces unit composed of exaggerated, overzealous crime-fighting personalities that use more force than necessary to extinguish terrorist threats. Muslim extremists are found to be in cahoots with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il and eventually liberal Hollywood becomes an added enemy of Team America. Alec Baldwin and Michael Moore get the most brutal treatment of any real-life personalities contained within movie.

Within the loose, insignificant plot is good satire that pokes fun at action movies and the cheesy characters that inhabit them. The machismo attitudes, female stereotypes and cocky one-liners fill this chaotic puppet show.

Parker and Stone have also produced their own twisted soundtrack, which is perfect for the moments with which the songs coexist.

Throughout the movie, gross-out humor and smart-ass name calling either hit-or-miss, with a somewhat even distribution between jokes that work and jokes that seem forced. At many points, the sloppy plot and obvious reliance on bratty behavior by the producers seems annoying and can work the nerves in an undesirable fashion. During some parts of the film, Parker and Stone abandon all inhibition and delve into unbearably ignorant and even racist portrayals of characters, especially when mocking how Arabs supposedly talk.

The movie’s frequent stints of played-out vulgarity get balanced out and often surpassed by its conceptual explorations of situational possibilities for the marionettes. The unachievable task of making puppets walk normally is exploited and the result is hilarious. A sex scene between puppets is drawn out and explored “from every angle,” generating laughter that stems from its originality and oddity. Other new experiences for marionettes present themselves and leave the audience in awe of the producers’ cracked-out creativity.

One problem is that the movie tries to be an all-out attack on both sides of the political spectrum, but its aim leans heavily to one side.

The current political climate in the United States is extremely tense for some and entertaining to others. The movie does provide needed trivialization of these phenomena, but strongly attacks particular advocates of peace while vaguely defining the targets to which Team America’s arrogance and over-the-top, sloppy aggressiveness should be accredited.

The producers poke fun at the misguided patriotism thriving in our country, but fail to directly personify its source. They did, however, use exact names and resemblances of public figures from the left, with Michael Moore as the prime scapegoat.

Whether it was intended or not, the harsh roasting applied to Moore comes at a time when his character is already under fierce scrutiny by conservatives and La-la-Land Americans who wish to divert attention from the sad truths and certifiable facts contained in his films “Fahrenheit 9/11” and “Bowling for Columbine.” While Moore’s motivations and style are questionable, the fear inducing tactics and inter-corporate dynamics of the Bush Administration are a reality that cries for credible exposure from any source. Moore is President Bush’s biggest adversary, not John Kerry, and to slam Moore while not even touching his up-for-re-election opponent is an obvious indicator of failure in their conscious endeavor to come across as apathetic nihilists.

Overall, I laughed my butt off and felt that the film did its job of entertaining me. I enjoyed it a lot, even though I did catch myself trying to find a hidden meaning in all the chaos, which is attributed to Parker and Stone’s own political views that seem to have leaked through even with their supposed attempts at an “everybody sucks” state.

I would have liked to see more time put into it and a little more considerate and methodical thought inserted into this chaotic debacle of puppet life. The great, overall theme that can be drawn from the riotous film is, as people to try to decipher it and get wildly offended by its antics, the producers and others involved with film can easily respond with a simple declaration:

“Come on, You’re getting all upset over puppets.”

E-mail Jed with comments at [email protected].

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