Wherein unreasonably free time is dedicated to proving Jonah Hill is funnier than you.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry

Why I Wanted to See It: Adam Sandler/Kevin James is as likely a couple as Leah Remini/Kevin James.

Buy A-REEBOKWhy I Hadn't Seen It: I probably decided to watch Knocked Up for the bajillionth time instead.

Why I Just Did: Sandler's Don't Mess with the Zohan had a thought-provoking ridiculous take on the Palestinian/Israeli conflict, and I thought Chuck & Larry might have done the same for homophobia and heteronormativity.

Why I'm Glad I Did: James and Sandler were adorable together. Rachel Dratch is one of my five favourite Rachels.[1] Much like Superbad did a month later, the movie does a good job reminding us of the thin line between strong homosocial friendships and homosexual relationships.

Why I Wish I Hadn't: It has the meanest mainstream depiction of an Asian in the 2.5 decades since Temple of Doom & Sixteen Candles.[2] Widowers, the homeless, and the obese are treated only slightly better. Like many feel-good comedies, its happy ending is unpleasantly illogical.

Chuck & Larry's most egregious failing is in its abject reluctance to distinguish gender and sexuality. James and Sandler continually use feyness as a proxy for gayness, and all the actual homosexuals in the film are completely flaming. While the movie openly -- even didactically -- advocates accepting the LGBT community, it also perpetuates the stereotypes against it. I understand the fear of alienating moviegoers by being "too gay," but Talladega Nights was far more daring a year earlier and still a considerable success. Someone as successful as Sandler has no excuse but cowardice.

[1] The other four being Bilson, Harris (who is technically a Rachael), Maddow & True.
[2] I don't mean Tia Tequila, but she's there too.