Not to be too nationally self-absorbed but why on earth didn’t the makers of the new Simpsons’ movie get some Irish guy on holidays in California to do the voice of ‘Colin’?? I’m with some posters on Dante-andthelobster on this one. Does Hollywood have an inability to see beyond the Oirish? I mean he’s only got about four lines and in fact appears several times in the film just standing there while Lisa makes up the dialogue.
*here be spoilers*
Having said that the film is very funny indeed and having gone along with little or no expectation about whether or not it was going to be an extended episode, it seemed funnier still. I especially liked the skateboarding Bart sequence and not simply because it was contrived a propos nothing in particular. What plot there is, for what it is worth, is a not too thinly veiled critique of the US Government’s response to the flooding of New Orleans. While Ms 73man saw shades of Willy Wonka in it – hello? – with EPA standing in for FEMA (and pronounced strangely by Marge), a large dome where chaos reigns and an US president more interested in “leading than reading” it is not hard to see where Groening et al got their ideas. It’s pronounced gray-ning apparently for those of you hermetic enough who have successfully managed to avoid anything Simpson’s related since 1991.
Moving to Alaska, the family have to make a new life and make do with the $1000 given to them by the federal government to overcome guilt about environmental degradation – true according to Ms 73man. Alaska is clearly the State of mind they need to see how separated the members of the family have become. Bart spends his time being drunk, Maggie sleeps in a drawer and Marge breaks up with Homer and then brings the children back to Seattle on a train. A train?! The Simpson’s never travel on trains! This is an allusion to the disjointedness of American family life and not to be too wanky about it, an appeal for Americans to become more active in the face of a government that is not listening.
I’m not going to write the thesis on it (title: Springing the Field: the Simpson’s Movie and tertiary post-colonial moments) but it’s a pretty intense satire on American values – hypocrisy over religion at times of crisis, the danger of too much power being taken by the federal government and Moe calling Marge Midge, which is always very funny. Ed Gonzalez at Slant does a better job than I do at the politics of the movie. And what’s with the shoddy rendering of the characters in the cinema seat credit sequence? Was it originally made in 1990?