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Thursday, January 05, 2006

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Becky

Wonderful post, Scott, from the curling up to the study of claymation Christmas movies (I have to admit, I loved them all when I was young but haven't watched them very carefully since) and, especially, to the last bit about enforced hipness. The way most kids' movies -- from Aladdin to Shrek to Chicken Little -- are made nowadays has long been a big pet peeve of mine. If the film makers want to include all of those adult pop culture references, not to mention age-inappropriate double entendres (nudge nudge, say no more, say no more), then they're not really making a kids' movie, are they? But then, of course, they'd be missing out on the chance of marketing gazillions of dollars of lunchboxes and Happy Meal figures to those kids, wouldn't they?

The flip side of the early hipness seems to be that grim "adultescence," so that kids can't be kids anymore, and adults aren't adults either. Grrr...

Scott

If the film makers want to include all of those adult pop culture references, not to mention age-inappropriate double entendres (nudge nudge, say no more, say no more), then they're not really making a kids' movie, are they? But then, of course, they'd be missing out on the chance of marketing gazillions of dollars of lunchboxes and Happy Meal figures to those kids, wouldn't they?

I don't know how I missed this comment when it was first left, and yet, clearly I did. As will be no surprise to anyone who reads Left of the Dial regularly, I miss a lot of obvious things.

While obviously you're right that marketing drives moviemaking to a huge degree these days, and has more and more for about two and a half decades now, the age-inappropriate double-entendres are something different. Those come because so many of the guys making the movies are immensely talented and well-educated and have a fifth-grader's sense o' humor. It's really pretty much that simple. Bizarre but true. Shrek has had the added benefit of making scatological humor in animation profitable, but it was born of simple arrested development.

It's sometimes known as "airplane humor"--meaning, it'll go over the heads of anyone too young to get it, and if you get it, well, then, you're not too young.

Or it could be that you are indeed too young, but you have older brothers. Hi Jay!

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