Sorry To Bother You

Sorry-to-Bother-You-poster

The movie strikes one of my favorite balances: it’s weird and stylish without being avant-garde or impenetrable. It’s obviously a movie telling a story, there’s no question of “wait, did that happen ,” or “did I misunderstand the purpose of that scene,” there are little splashes of excitement and whimsy that separate it from a movie made by anyone other than Boots Riley. Scott Pilgrim and Dazed and Confused fill that same role for me, and they’re some of my all-time faves. A movie can score so many extra points from me just for trying. It can be a “bad movie” and still wedge itself into my heart (I’m lookin’ at you, Smokin’ Aces).

It draws a lot from Idiocracy, which is a hard comparison to avoid given Terry Crews’s similarly small role in both and the popularity of self-abuse game shows (though the timbre of this flick’s 150-million-viewer strong I Got The Shit Kicked Out of Me is a measure darker). I felt StBY was less cynical, though. Even with the folks happy to be slaves under Silicon-Valley endgame company Worryfree, Idiocracy opens with humanity already totally done for. And I always appreciate cynicism in the service of utopia rather than a bitter stew.

The bloody head-wound worsening until his third act redemption was on-the-nose, but Lakeith’s stagger throughout made him look weighed down. The world is always crushing him. And now I’m embarrassed that I didn’t register whether or not it persisted after that same redemption moment.

Armie Hammer did a pitch-perfect sneering Winklevii, so it stands to reason that he’d be the best fit for the sort of dictator tech-bro we see ascending to power around us every day. He’s won me over, big time, and I love comparing his maxed-out persona here with the snuggly big-brother-lover he played in Call Me By Your Name.

So simple that maybe you missed it but the popular soft drink is named Soda Cola. Made better for not rubbing it in the audience’s face (though it certainly rubs Cassius’s face). And along those lines, I am so embarrassed that it took me until the actual last reading of his name that “Cassius Green” = “Cash Is Green,” but there’s no WAY anyone else missed that.

And there was even more! Loved the costuming; psychedelic suits, bold ties, one-of-a-kind earrings. Extra flair like Mr. ____’s eyepatch seems a little try-hard when you focus on it, but who gives a shit? David Cross and Patton Oswalt were truly the best selections for white voice; I’ll follow Lily James into the dark after Baby Driver. So cool to see fellow NYU-er and inspired comedienne Kate Berlant show up (… Though now that I think about it, she vanishes halfway through, hm), along with cameos by Bay Area comics Kamau W. Bell and Nato Green. The Coup and tUnE-yArDs synthesize their boisterous joy for a soundtrack that had me swaying and tapping my toes every time a beat dropped. I’m going to be listening to “Level It Up” and “Hey Saturday Night” for the rest of the month, guaranteed. And let’s not forget, Patton starred in The Coup’s video for “The Magic Clap” back in 2012, which was, of course, from an album titled Sorry To Bother You.

Finally: I’ve spent some time lingering in Layover, the Oakland bar hosting several scenes. Just need to cap this on my cool, y’know?

Pitchfork, “Nintendo 64’s Hidden Musical Gems”

It’s upsetting to think that if I had focused more on critical writing or plied some NY internships a bit more, publications might be tapping me to write articles like this (or at least I’d feel confident enough in my talents that I’d write ’em on my own and shop ’em around). But nope! I’m stickin’ to jokes. At least I get to read the strong videogame music analysis that I’ve desired since I was approximately 11 years old.

in which i attack someone who wasn’t addressing me

heroinfriday:

It is kind of compromising freedom of speech because this is a television show. You’re not correcting the woman, you’re correcting the writers who designed this scene. If television, film, books and music  all  tiptoed and danced around every minuscule instance of possible (insert behavior or trait)-shaming out of fear of offending someone as tumblr seems to expect them to do well entertainment and art would go right down the shitter.

a.k.a. “Once hurtful language is excised from popular culture there will be nothing to entertain me!”

oh no dude, you might be forced to check out movies made by minorities and music from countries you can’t pronounce, woe is you, art made by straight white dudes might have to contend with this in the future, apocalyptic flood of tears

It’s also not compromising freedom of speech; it’s criticism, it’s existed since the first terrible cave painting of a buffalo-cock-man was masturbatory for some neanderthals and ignored by others. Contrary to popular belief, feminist critique is not a harpy screeching “you cannot do this, this can’t be allowed“… It’s a harpy politely informing “I am not going to give you money if you keep hurting people because this does not fit with my outlook.”

But no, please, insist on hurting people. Demand that you have the right and then employ it. Try to make folks fucking miserable. I can’t think of a more noble cause.