‘The Hangover’ and the Age of the Jokeless Comedy – NYTimes.com

In Apatow, the enemy is adulthood, which ruins life; in Phillips, the enemy is women, who ruin men.

What these auteurs truly have in common, though, is that they have systematically boiled away many of the pleasures previously associated with comedy — first among these, jokes themselves — and replaced them with a different kind of lure: the appeal of spending two hours hanging out with a loose and jocular gang of goofy bros.

‘The Hangover’ and the Age of the Jokeless Comedy – NYTimes.com


Saturday Night Live – George F. Will’s Sports Machine. “As always, the questions will focus exclusively on baseball, the only game that transcends the boundary between fury and repose.” Also, “The answer is: the exhilarating tension between being and becoming.” This kills me. (via)

It seems to me that making escapist films might be a better service to people than making intellectual ones and making films that deal with issues. It might be better to just make escapist comedies that don’t touch on any issues. The people just get a cool lemonade, and then they go out refreshed, they enjoy themselves, they forget how awful things are and it helps them—it strengthens them to get through the day. So I feel humor is important for those two reasons: that it is a little bit of refreshment like music, and that women have told me over the years that it is very, very important to them.

The General

The General. I’ve grown to love me some Buster Keaton. Seems like every scene in this movie has a laugh built-in. But it’s not just a gag to hold you over until something happens. They’re all connected with the chase or to at least show you what the hero is like. And I love the efficiency of the stunts. Everything seems so cleanly done. Great stuff. Roger Ebert on The General.

Update: This movie is also set in my home state of Georgia. Just sayin’…

One day backstage in the ’30s, Larry, Shemp, and Moe were playing cards. Shemp accused Larry of cheating. After a heated argument, Shemp reached over and stuck his fingers in Larry’s eyes. Moe, watching, thought it was hilarious … and that’s how the famous poke-in-the-eyes routine was born.

The origin of the Three Stooges. [via marginal revolution]