Review: An American Carol

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While the film’s first few might be deceptively palatable, it doesn’t take long for the humor to be subsumed by a heavy-handed political message. Director David Zucker resorts to his trademark slapstick, silly skits and sight gags to poke fun unfairly at not merely Moore but a host of liberal causes, including global warming, nationalized healthcare and gay rights.

[Entertainment: DVD Review]

This shameful spoof takes cheap potshots at Michael Moore ostensibly for the amusement of right-wing zealots. The film features Kevin Farley as Hollywood moviemaker Michael Malone, a thinly-veiled caricature of Mr. Moore. The plot is very loosely based on Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, except that this Scrooge (aka Michael) hates the Fourth of July holiday instead of Christmas. The simplistic premise has him not merely being un-American but the unwitting dupe of a cell of radical Islamists planning to blow up Madison Square Garden.

Narrated by Leslie Nielsen, the story unfolds in post 9/11 Afghanistan where we find Michael naively accepting $10 million in financing for his next project, "Fascist America," from a trio of Taliban terrorists. Fortunately, he is visited by three ghosts, that of General George Patton (Kelsey Grammer), President John F. Kennedy (Chriss Anglin) and country singer Trace Adkins (himself), who take turns trying to show the Prodigal citizen the light in time to avert the impending disaster.

While the film’s first few might be deceptively palatable, it doesn’t take long for the humor to be subsumed by a heavy-handed political message. Director David Zucker resorts to his trademark slapstick, silly skits and sight gags to poke fun unfairly at not merely Moore but a host of liberal causes, including global warming, nationalized healthcare and gay rights.

Along the way, ACLU attorney are depicted as zombies who deserve to be shot on sight, student demonstrators are demonized for exercising their First Amendment rights, and Moore is repeatedly portrayed as a traitor. Less a legit satire than a scary soap box in service of a mean-spirited agenda. A dead giveaway is the cast which boasts a bevy of arch conservatives including Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly.


Challenging authority as unpatriotic? Bah, humbug!

Poor (0 stars). PG-13 for profanity, drug use, irreverent humor and crude content. Running time: 83 minutes. Studio: Vivendi Entertainment



 

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