The Interview – ballsy or idiotic?
It takes a special kind of talent, a special kind of balls, or sometimes, a special kind of idiot to get people talking.
Grotesque and vulgar may or may not be your type of humour. [Although the success of “Dumb and Dumber” demonstrates that people like toilet humour more than they like to admit.] And, yes, The Interview did get a little too Tarantino for my taste at the end – all that gushing blood and flying limbs.
Nevertheless, as Seth Godin reminds us in “Purple Cow”, most products are not talked about. Rather, they are ignored.
Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg definitely got people talking. I didn’t write a blog post about the latest Hunger Games movie, did I?
1. “The Interview” was not about North Korea.
Well, it was. But it didn’t have to be… It was no more about North Korea, than Borat was about Kazakhstan.
The cult of personality, yes. The military regime, yes. Yet, the specifics are arbitrary.
And may I remind you that Borat was simultaneously banned in all Arab countries AND nominated for Academy Awards for best-adapted screen play? Kazakhstan seemed to have a bit more sense of humour. Or, perhaps, it was just that they just did not have as many nuclear weapons.
While Borat earned “high-fives almost all-around for being offensive in the funniest possible way”, The Interview prompted this letter from Santa and his elves:
”We will clearly show it to you at the very time and places The Interview be shown, including the premiere, how bitter fate those who seek fun in terror should be doomed to. Soon all the world will see what an awful movie Sony Pictures Entertainment has made. The world will be full of fear. Remember the 11th of September 2001. We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time. (If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.)”
This warm and fuzzy message was sent by the Guardians of Peace (are they related to Hell’s Angels?) – the hacker group that claimed responsibility for attack on Sony. The 9/11 reference was especially… classy.
2. “The Interview” was way more entertaining than I thought it would be.
I expected something much more grim and serious – perhaps, “Shoah” meets “Food, Inc”. [This last sentence serves two purposes: 1) tells you about the extent of my familiarity with Seth Rogen, and 2) insults half of my friends, both Jewish and vegetarian.]
Yet, it was the very nonchalant poking nature of the movie that made it so offensive.
Eminem’s cameo appearance was a gem.
Kudos to Eminem. As someone once said: “If you can’t laugh at yourself, then what the fuck is the point of living?”.
3. I am now contemplating a trip to North Korea.
My morbidly curious travel-loving nature (which is probably going to get me killed one day) is now wondering how difficult it would be to travel to North Korea. You know… to see the fake grapefruit for myself. [Some interesting insights from a tourist to North Korea here.]
I wonder if they have Spartan Races down there. Joe did mention at some point that he likes discipline. And mandatory curfew.
4. They hate us ‘coz they ain’t us!
Yeah. You are welcome. If that’s not a great confidence booster, I don’t know what is.
5. I am probably not going to get killed for this blog post.
Someone asked if I were worried about the North Korean hackers, openly talking about having watched The Interview like that. I figured that while Rogen and Franco were still alive, I’m probably ok. And if those two get assassinated, it would probably make the news.
Not to mention that The Interview has now been released on iTunes, Google Play, YouTube Movies, and all the internets.
I’d actually be more worried as to what would happen to someone living in North Korea watching this movie. We are talking about a country where internet access is limited to a handful of scientists and highest ranking government officials.
Fun fact: Fighters for a Free North Korea plan to distribute DVD copies of The Interview via balloon drops.
6. I do not know what I’m talking about.
Political satire is not my preferred mode of entertainment. If I even for second fooled you into believing that I have even the slightest understanding of the political situation in North Korea, that’s brownie points for me. As Dave Skylark points out, “This is 2014, women are smart now”.
I am still very much a blogger who dishes out advice on how to do Tough Mudder without training, does Zumba once in a while, and makes fun of Weight Watchers. So, this is just me, little old me, barking in virtual space (my own virtual space, mind you).
Yet, those of you who were dumping buckets of ice over your heads as recently as this summer, will remember the argument of so-called awareness. The film did encourage me to seek out more information. Mission accomplished?
I can’t leave you with any other song, but this:
YOUR TURN: What did you think of “The Interview”? Ok, ok. You do not want to admit you have already seen it. IF you did watch “The Interview”, and I’m not saying that you did… what would you have thought about it? Is it funny? Stupid? Both? Neither?
And… how do you feel about Margaritas?