Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Kids Are All Wrong

I was gonna review Europa Report except I hit a snag. Two snags. First, there's not much to be said beyond "It rocks! Go see it!" Second, I had to sit through the same trailer twice for something called The Lifeguard and that proved much more inspiring. Like ipecac.

From what I gathered from this double dose of awful, Kristen Bell is some neurotic 30-year-old - "I'm 29!" she insists in a joke that's unfunny before it happens - overwhelmed by the vagaries of modern life. So she flees the big city to move back in with her parents and be a lifeguard, initiating many picturesque adventures reminiscent of middle-aged yuppies experiencing a mid-life crisis and getting an ass tattoo.

Which would explain her posture...

It would be bad enough if this film stopped at such self-absorbed twaddle, but The Lifeguard is much more insidious. It takes the "boomerang kids" criticism of Millennials and runs with it, all the way to the conclusion that kids these days just don't want to behave like responsible adults. This is not interpretation, this is the explicit message as summed up by Bell's exasperated mom - "Grow up!"

No mention is made of the wretched economic realities Millenials face. Nothing about how the job market locks out younger workers and is general shit. Nope, seems 20 and 30 somethings just want to drink at party at the ol' swimmin' hole. It had me so twisted up with rage I was ready to jump back and throttle the two hipster fucks who'd chortled twice at that 29 joke.

And this shit is a Sundance pick! How does that even happen!? Let's be clear, not a single conservative or libertarian even knows what Sundance is, let alone would actually watch a film celebrated by that sideshow. They only watch superhero flicks and porn, meaning it's the nominal liberals who are celebrating this drek. It makes the case, better than a million Jacobin articles, that all the self-styled liberals and progressives in this country are just middle-class wine pedants, substituting a profession of tolerance for darkies and queers for anything resembling coherent economic philosophy.

And don't even get me started on the fucking puppets!

Though this brings me to one thing worth expanding on, regarding Europa Report. Despite the terrible fate of the crew in the cold emptyness of space, the film has an undeniable subtext of the glory of discovery. Prometheus had the same thing going on, this vibe that despite the face-raping xenomonsters it's still all worth it. Maybe we should take the advice, get to exploring the cosmos in earnest rather than whinging and blaming the broken economy on people who weren't even old enough to drive when the Reagen and Bush greed-heads started gambling the national wealth into oblivion?

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