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Judge May Have Dumbed Down his Own Movie About the Dumbing Down of Society

  • Jun 30, 2009
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Rumor has it that Fox, after reviewing the final cut of this film, tossed it directly in the Direct to DVD bin. In this case, that turned out to be a win-win. Fox gets to avoid some responsibility of a rediculously executed movie and Mike Judge gets a cult classic -- which are so often, and deliciously, rediculously executed.

What Mike has done is take all of those Darwin urban myth legends, of stupid people doing unbelievaby stupid things, and turned it into a movie about the future where everybody is that stupid. With the exception of an extremely "average soldier" and a prostitute who have both been transplated into this low IQ era. Consequently, they are now the smartest people on the planet.

Despite the movie's title, Judge should have eased up on the opaque Beavis and Butt Head humor in favor of the more sophisticated humor that we find in King of the Hill. "Smart people", wherever they are, have the capacity to pick up on subtle gags, which this movie would have benefited from. Instead, the movie is pushed and pulled along by a narrator who explains every joke. For instance, one scence depicts a jam packed theater where everyone is entertained by a full feature length movie of a person's ass. This brilliant scene didn't require a narrator, but we get one anyway. I think most of us would have got the joke. Those who would miss it, in abscence of a narrative, are probably the joke's target.

Having said that, the premise of Idiocracy is so strong that it more than makes up for all of its weaker points. I didn't laugh nearly as much as I should have, but I smiled in agreement with Judge's judgment on society. I just wish he hadn't dumbed down his own movie about our dumb and dumber society.

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July 06, 2009
I also did a review of this movie. We seem to agree on most things. I guess you have a bit more faith in the intelligence of today's people than I do, though. I have actually had people who didn't get some of the jokes even with a narrator. A good review and a prefect foil to mine. Thanks.
July 06, 2009
Actually, you're right. You just can't assume that people will figure things out for themselves. I was at Burger King and saw a clever push sign on one of their doors (Apparently, some people would insist on pulling it). The sign on the door read: "You can have it your way and pull, but this door is known for being pretty stubborn."
July 06, 2009
I also love the warnings on coffee cups "Caution: this coffee is hot". Uhhh.............are we already that far into this idea?
July 01, 2009
Man! I liked this movie! It's commentary on society and its main premise was clever and arguably original. I agree that it should have been funnier with some missed opportunities but it is a worthy effort. Great review!
July 01, 2009
Yeah, ultimately it's a movie that *had* to be made! I remember when my cousin recommended it to me, telling me what the premise was, I thought to myself "finally." Most of my friends liked it just for the message alone, even if they didn't find it as funny as it should have been.
More Idiocracy (2006 movie) reviews
Quick Tip by . September 02, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Not as good as Office Space, but it's worth a watch ... if only for the de-evolution of humanity case studies. That's pretty funny. ALSO, Luke Wilson plays a guybrarian before he's cryogenically frozen. Wooo! :D
Quick Tip by . September 02, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
May be the greatest movie about "epic stupidity" made! It does have its flaws but for sheer stupid fun, this is a must-see!! "Not Sure" is a character and "A$$ the movie" is an award-winning movie in this period-alternate reality! LOL
Quick Tip by . September 02, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Also flawed but worth a few hours: Gary Shteyngart's dystopian novel "Super Sad True Love Story," which I reviewed last month here. Both satires preditct how quickly literacy could plummet and stupidity could soar.
review by . May 26, 2009
The main point of this movie is that intelligent people wait to have children until they are set in their careers and have a stable life while stupid people breed like rabbits.  I don't usually like what Mike Judge does, but this one is more than worth watching.  I"m not going to give away too much, but the actions takes place 500 years from now, when the children of intelligent people are long gone and the planet is ruled by the children of the stupid people.  For instance, the longest …
review by . January 22, 2008
posted in Movie Hype
This tale reminded me somewhat of Woody Allen's Sleeper. Luke Owen is put into suspended animation and wakes up 500 years later to find that man has evolved to complete idiocy, leaving him the world's smartest man. Though the movie is mostly silly, it still works, mainly because of Luke's excellent "straight man" job as someone who is stubborn to not accept what is but tries to change things to what he knows (water makes plants grow, not Gatorade). Some of the parts are incredibly funny.
review by . January 30, 2008
posted in Movie Hype
Pros: amusing, quirky, and thought provoking      Cons: a running stream of foul language and dumbed-down humor emphasizes the point, too close to home      The Bottom Line: President Camacho addresses the nation... "We're running out of french fries and burrito coverings. But I got a solution!"      Plot Details: This opinion reveals major details about the movie's plot. Private Joe Bauers (Luke Wilson) is the most average …
review by . April 27, 2007
The mastermind of "King of the Hill" and "Beavis and Butthead," Mike Judge, gives all of us a loud, buffoonish warning of things to come in "Idiocracy." It's the tale of an average joe/military librarian named Joe (Luke Wilson)who, along with a prostitute named Rita (Maya Rudolph), takes part in a hibernation experiment for the military. Instead of awaking one year later, however, they wake up five hundred years in the future. The really bad thing is that thanks to the commercialization of society …
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Given that Office Space is a bona fide cult classic, it comes as some surprise that Mike Judge's follow-up wasn't more heavily promoted. Granted, this live-action comedy is a darker, more pointed proposition, but it's unfortunate that few theater patrons got the opportunity to, well, judge for themselves. InIdiocracy, theKing of the Hillcreator visualizes what would happen if Devo's proposition--that mankind is in the process of devolution--came to pass. The catalyst: the overeducated start having fewer children while the undereducated have more. Enter Joe (Luke Wilson), a military librarian with no family and even less ambition. The Pentagon chooses him for a top-secret hibernation project due to his extreme "average-ness." They select Rita (SNL's Maya Rudolph), a prostitute, for the same reason. When the experiment goes haywire, the two emerge 500 years later--rather than one. Now it's 2505 and they're the brightest people in the over-polluted land. Everyone else is, basically, Beavis and Butt-head. Yes, the satire couldn't be less subtle, but the premise gives Judge license to make as much fun of junk food pop culture as dystopian classics like1984andPlanet of the Apes. Wilson wisely plays it straight, even if the actors who surround him sometimes succumb to excess. And the effects may be cheesy, but that just adds to the fun.Idiocracyfeatures former footballer Terry Crews (Everybody Hates Chris) as President Camacho and Dax ...
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