22 September 2006

Bohemian Rhapsody

Writing in Slate, Michael Weiss laments that Pretty in Pink wasn't Pretty and Pinko.

No, really, he's complaining about the films of John Hughes and their implicit conservatism.

Yes, he's an idiot.

Don't believe me, read the whole thing, but just to give you a taste of its gobsmacking stupidity, the concluding paragraph will serve well

Gen X nostalgia is as interesting for what it remembers as for what it chooses to ignore. Every so often, you'll turn on TBS and be forced to take inventory of the popular culture of your youth. Trading Places delivered its comeuppance with a switcheroo act of stock fraud; the true nemesis of Ghost Busters wasn't Gozer but the EPA; Stripes is all about making a kind of screwball peace with the military-industrial complex … Sure enough, there's Harold Ramis—another Lampoon alum, who directed Hughes' screenplay for Vacation—reflecting on the Chicago Seven hearings in a recent interview with the Believer: "They ran up and down the street, smashing car windows and stuff. My first reaction was, 'Yeah, right on!' But then I thought, 'Wait, I'm parked out there.' " The polite term for this gentle rightward shift when it happens to artists and intellectuals is embourgeoisement. What a shame the philosopher of puberty never warned kids about that.

Yes, Harold Ramis, and by some alchemical process that I don't quite comprehend, John Hughes as well, should be considered FASCIST BROWNSHIRT RETHUGLICANS!!! for not being sufficiently sympathetic towards wanton property destruction.

OK, then.

Remember kiddies, no artist or intellectual can be anything but Marxist and Bohemian.

And speaking of lamenting the lack of bohemian credentials for 80s teen flicks, what would Mr. Weiss make of Penelope Spheeris' early 90s classic of Suburban dimwittedness (which really seems like it's set in the 70s, but is decidedly apolitical and pro-consumerism)?

No comments: