Team America: World Police
- compiled by Jeffrey Overstreet Copyright Christianity Today International
- 2004 1 Jan
Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the irreverent jokesters behind the hugely popular animated series
And yet, while it's a rare comedy that targets liberals as vehemently as most target conservatives, Christian film critics are almost unanimous in their condemnation of the flick.
Michael Elliott (Movie Parables) sees the film as a step down from the
Tom Neven (
Douglas Downs (Christian Spotlight) says it's "the MOST tasteless movie I have ever seen. (Is there a law against 'puppet abuse'?) It is extremely profane, and it takes all the 'pop' out of pop culture entertainment."
But Chris Utley (Hollywood Jesus) has a different response: "It is clear why this film will appeal to the high-school/20-something set. Even some of the 30-something folks will dig it. Let's face facts: the movie is hilarious! The stuff they do with these puppets is hilarious! The lyrics in the musical numbers are gut-busting! The one-liners are sidesplitting! The Michael Moore 'cameo' is outrageous! Like I said, it's rude, crude and laugh-out-loud funny! It's definitely among the funniest movies of the year. I'm recommending the flick … but only for the thick-skinned among us who have strong convictions and are open-minded with their comedy choices." He goes on to list his reasons for defending the film from its detractors.
At the very same Web site, Kevin Miller argues, "Despite all of these positive points, the main problem with this film is that these guys just don't seem to know when to stop." He then addresses the filmmakers directly. "In many ways,
Cliff Vaughn (Ethics Daily) stakes out some middle ground. "It would be hard to deny the impressive production values of the movie. The marionette action is delightful, the sets are wonderfully constructed, and the way Parker and Stone satirize action-movie clichés is spot-on. The filmmakers are no doubt talented … but most of the content is simply inappropriate for young minds, and some would say any minds. Don't be fooled by the marionettes, and don't take the kids."
Many mainstream critics are welcoming this barrage of irreverent humor.