Open Thread for April 13, 2012

Open Thread for April 13, 2012

Coming at you faster than a North Korean rocket to poke you in the eye, it’s this week’s Open Thread!

Coming at you faster than a North Korean rocket to poke you in the eye, it’s this week’s Open Thread!

Amid this weekends wide openings, the standout is Farrelly Bros. reboot of the Three Stooges franchise:

I gotta say, the Stooges were not really a part of my pop-culture upbringing like, say, Jem and the Holograms and Night Court. I know the obvious high points: “Oh, a wiseguy!” and poking eyes out and whatnot. But I don’t have the deep and abiding appreciation of the source material that the filmmakers seem to, and I probably wouldn’t have responded to this pitch:

Finally, in 2000, the Farrellys met with Lorenzo di Bonaventura, who at the time was the head of production at Warner Bros. Pictures. The Farrellys were expected to lay out some kind of story line, but, as Benjamin remembered it, “Pete and Bobby sat down, and then Pete looked at Lorenzo and he just said, ‘Dumb, Dumber & Dumbest.’ And Lorenzo said, ‘Sold.’”

That pitch became this film:

Are you a stooge? Any overthinking to be done about these very dedicated underthinkers? Sound off in the comments, for this is your… Open Thread.

12 Comments on “Open Thread for April 13, 2012”

  1. An Inside Joke #

    I find the timing of this reboot somewhat interesting. Like Wrather mentioned in this post, I didn’t really grow up with the Three Stooges at all. I was familiar with the basic concept, but I can’t remember ever sitting down to watch a single sketch. So, assuming that the film producers are banking on any turn-out of young people, I wonder why they released this movie at a time when none of the most profitable demographic are really going to have any nostalgia for the source material.

    Of course, that being said, I’m sure that the target demographic for, say, the Smurfs movie was too young to remember that original show, either, but that didn’t seem to hurt production (and while I didn’t see the Smurfs, based on the trailer that seemed like a straight-up kids movie), so maybe this is some sort of new, unexplained marketing phenomenon: make reboots of old classics targeted at an audience too young to be familiar with the classic. I guess at least that way you avoid the typical fan-boy problems of the audience rejecting it for not being true enough to the source material.


  2. Gab #

    Is that kind of humor even all that popular nowadays? I know slapstick still gets laughs, but an entire movie of the hyperbolic, extremely unrealistic kind of slapstick like old Three Stooges skits? Because while I do think physical comedy can be funny, I think the plausibility of it makes a difference.

    The trailer shows: A dufffel back filled with three babies get tossed (although whether that’s what leads to them being “dumb, dumber, and dumbest,” perhaps could be overthought); a baby poking the eyes of a nun so hard that said nun falls over; a person getting hit in the head with a hammer (and NOT falling over, this time); three dudes jumping off a multi-story building; a guy getting hit by a van and flung a rather long distance; a man’s head being used to bang open a door; giant bell falling off of a roof and hitting a man in the face; and a lobster latching onto a man’s face and then doing some presumably rather violent things to the genitals of another man (whilst in said man’s pants). And the trailer is less than two minutes long. (There are other “comedic” moments, yes, but those are either dialogue or not as sensational/ physically impossible.) That’s kind of overwhelming.


    • Rambler #

      I’d say some strong arguements could be made that the modern versions of that humor have been very popular recently. But the absurdity required for it to remain vital has shifted it into the genre of “reality/prank” entertainment, it wouldn’t take a lot of effort to drawn the heridity lines from the Stooges to Jackass and Sacha Baron Cohen.

      In fact I seem to recall an OTI reference that described Jackass as “extreme vaudville”… or maybe I’m just making that up.

      For me the dilema is that I can’t really manage to enjoy it in it’s new forms. But the Stooges were pure gold.

      There’s a lot of overthinking that went into creating even their cheapest gags and stunts, and a lot of social commentary in their setups.

      In terms of childhood memories, yeah we’re all pretty late for first run Stooges; but I remember TBS doing late night Stooges marathons during the 80’s. I’ve got great memories of laughing on the couch with Dad while Mom grumped over what kind of influence this was going to have on me.
      I don’t know whether I’ll actually give the movie a try ot not, but I taped about 4 hours of classic Stooges on AMC last night and I plan to enjot it thoroughly.


    • RealityCheck #

      I watched it. The audience was ROLLING.

      There’s a reason the Stooges have been in syndication this long…


  3. Katy #

    I’m sorry. I narrowed in on “Jem and the Holograms” and began a five-minute nostalgic Internet search for more. It’s amazing how over-dramatic and flat the show is sometimes. And Rio! Who’d be in love with a purple-haired guy that’s cheating on you WITH ANOTHER VERSION OF YOU?

    Yet I love it. *tears*


  4. Megan from Lombard #

    Joss’ horror movie, ‘Cabin in the Woods’ also came out this weekend although it’s been largely overshadowed by the upcoming Avenger’s movie (which also has Chris Hemsworth, sans cape, in it). Is anyone going to see it in theaters or wait until the DVD comes out?


    • Gab #

      I hope to see it, but whether that pans out… Sigh.


      • An Inside Joke #

        Also hoping to see Cabin in the Woods, but it kind of depends on if I can convince my friends to go.

        Say, has anyone ever tried to organize an OTI viewing? Like, readers all over the country can pick a day and time, and all see the movie, then meet up on OTI and rehash it afterwards. It’s almost like seeing a movie in-person with your friends – except not.


    • Toni #

      Just saw the movie last night and Overthinking it MUST DO A PODCAST ABOUT IT!

      The movie is really furtile ground to overthink on.

      Just a few things to talk/think about:
      1) Id, ego and superego
      2) Who is the audience inside the movie?
      3) Why do we watch horror movies, why do we need them?
      4) And does post-modernism, genre savvy characters and deconstructions “anger” “the audience”?


      • Toni #

        Also I recommend watching this with an audience. The most fun movie watching experience I’ve had in a long time. (Might have to do with watching it in a horror convention of sorts.)


  5. Raymond Ropp #

    A round of applause for your blog.Much thanks again. Really Cool.


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