Mosaic / Reviews / September 23, 2010

Film Freak: Bill Murray, are you testing my faith?

Talking animals need to shut the hell up. We’ve all seen the ads — a wisecracking [insert mammal here] stars in the family friendly “feel-good movie of the summer,” winning the hearts of millions of people who’ve torn their hearts out of their bodies in frustration. Personally, each time I see such an ad, I debate whether or not I should back-flip into a frothy rage-tornado of destruction or if I should bide my time, hunting each “director” down one by one. How can they talk without a larynx? They can’t.

It’s not that I don’t find the humor in talking animals. My problem is that there is really no humor worth finding. It’s annoying. Let’s say, hypothetically, you pick a puppy up at the local shelter (because you’re a good human being) and take it home only to find out that not only is it peeing all over you floors, it’s hitting on your girlfriend and making prank phone-calls to your mother at 3 a.m. Is that funny? Does that make you laugh? No, it makes you either schizophrenic or cursed (Aztec, shaken, not stirred). The same goes for talking babies (which, let’s face it, are essentially screaming puppies). If your child comes out of the womb complaining about the décor of the hospital room with the vocabulary of a 1920’s sailor and possesses some bizarre inhuman ability, you have a problem. And if you haven’t noticed already, these “creatures” (talking babies/animals/baby-animals/animal-babies) defy biology and physiology; if your cat is doing the tango call an exorcist.

But you like those movies, don’t you? You enjoyed the cheesy overused puns like “every dog has its day” and the “we-can-make-its-mouth-move” CGI. Who the hell am I to say you’re wrong? Who cares if you have to watch it in secret, waiting until no one is around to judge your dark, perverse obsession? But you know that terror when someone wanders into the room? That’s shame. It’s time to put down the blunt that convinced you those talking bears would be funny and entertaining.

With all film, there’s good and there’s bad. Except with talking animals — there is only bad. I’m giving every single one of these “movies” a negative rating that I can’t even put to words due to rage-spasms. I’m off to fight a narwhal in a top hat voiced by Morgan Freeman.

Next week: an in-depth examination into the complete works of Buñuel spanning from Un Chien Andalou to The A-Team.

Dan Kahn

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