Monday, March 08, 2010

Movie Log: Airplane!, The Naked Gun

My boys are big fans of "spoofs," since seeing Spaceballs a few months back, so I suppose it was inevitable that we'd dive into the depths of Zucker-Abrahams-Zucker sooner rather than later. So we saw Airplane! last Saturday and The Naked Gun this Saturday, for a massive dose of spoofs.

(Thing 1 used the word "spoof" approximately once per sentence for the week after seeing Spaceballs, and it's become something of a running joke around our household. But I'll try to keep it to a minimum here.)

Neither of those movies needs me to explain it and promote it; they're two of the best-known and -liked comedies of the last generation. And they're still very funny now; all three of us laughed a lot.

But I was struck again by how movies that I saw at basically the same age my sons are now -- Airplane! came out in 1980, when I was eleven, exactly as old as Thing 1 is now (and my younger brother would have been about the age of Thing 2 then, as well) -- seem to have a lot of jokes that I hope they don't ask me to explain. (Such as the inflatable co-pilot, "ever been in a Turkish prison, Jimmy?", and even the subtext of Striker's drinking problem.) It seems clear that comedies are much more narrowly targeted these days; there's Shorts for kids and The Hangover for adults, instead of movies like Airplane! and Ghostbusters that split the difference.

In other news, I am apparently getting old and crotchety enough to declare everything was better in The Old Days, so it's time for me to shut up now.

But the sequels to these movies are definitely on the horizon for the Wheeler boys, and maybe also things like Meatballs and the original Bad News Bears. Why not relive my own childhood through my kids -- everyone else does! (Any other suggestions for comedies that fidgety tween boys will love?)


Bill Peschel said...

Good luck explaining the ghost unbuckling Dan Ackroyd's belt in Ghostbusters ....

Here's an odditity, I was watching "The Freshman", the Harold Lloyd silent film, when my 8-year-old boy came in. He sat down beside me, watched the rest of it, and loved it, if only for the novelty.

Anyway, I wonder what they would think of "Rock and Roll High School." The Ramones!

Anonymous said...

I should think the Ramones might be a little old for them until Thing 1 is 15 or so. Actually, two TV shows from an earlier vintage I can heartily recommend are Pee Wee's Playhouse, and the Monkees. We've shown these to both of our kids (6 and 11 right now, respectively)and they eat them up with a spoon. Right now we're n a big Monkees binge, and I've been forced to add the old Monkees' hits to the family Ipod.

Dave said...

Don't forget Top Secret. Probably my favorite of all those films. Enjoy sharing the "glowing boobs" moment with them.

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