©2009 Big Empire Industries and Randy Shandis Enterprises
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This week:
I Love You, Man

Filthy says:
"Good acting, hokey story."

I don't understad "bromances". The word is as lame as other fake words like "metrosexual" and "manny". The only time any of those was clever was the first time they were used, and only if the person who coined them knew he sounded like an asshole. Otherwise, they are just the lazy, unfunny hipster's way to say nothing in unoriginal ways. You've got to be an idiot to use phony words that have appeared in the New York Times "Sunday Styles" section.

Back to bromances. It's for all the assholes who call their garage or basement a "man-cave". No, it's a fucking garage or basement. If you need to call it a man-cave to grow a little chest hair you're a bigger pussy than you'll ever know. You probably also dream of living the life of the guy on a Miller Genuine Draft billboard. Bromance and man-cave have nothing on the dread-inducing as "vajayjay", though. What the fuck is that? It's like a grown man calling his dick a "pee-pee". A dick is always a dick, unless it's a cock. A vagina is always a vagina, unless it's a pussy or beaver. A silly name doesn't change what a vagina is; it just suggests the speaker thinks of it more like a pretty vase, or a coin purse than a urinary tract/birth canal/genitalia/Georgia O'Keefe painting.

There's no woman's vagina in I Love You, Man, but I'm pretty damn sure someone says "man-cave". And the movie does contain what I think is a bromance. Even though this isn't a Judd Apatow movie, it smells like his gas. All that male bonding over athletic competition, gambling and bad rock music. That's the shit I never understood. I've never felt the urge to hang out with just the guys. Mainly because guys are dicks, but also because I like having sex with women, or imagining I am having sex with the ones who either hate me or think I'm super creepy. I hate competing against other guys because it opens me up to the possibility of losing. Then I feel awful and need somebody to rub my neck. The only contests I win are the ones like seeing who can wet his pants the most, or who can we make cry by bringing up the time he got locked in the Tavern's grease trap for six hours because he thought he saw leprechauns. I don't give a fuck about football. I don't understand society's (and bad comedians') need to dictate that guys have to do some stuff only with guys. Some of my most profound and deepest discussions about jock itch have been with The Harelip, and she's mostly a girl. My old boss at the Family Dollar, Dipshit Suzanne, loved to talk about dry humping and jerking off.

My point is, beer commercials dictate far too many of the social mores to our passive society. We take it on their authority that men must have male friends to act like assholes with. The reality is, I don't need a guy to hang out with me on the curb at the apartment complex and throw rocks at Cadillacs and Lincolns. If a chick wants to do it, that's okay too, so long as she doesn't throw like a girl.

I Love You, Man is based on Coors Light dictum. It's a damn shame because it's a likeable, occasionally funny movie otherwise. Paul Rudd plays a squishy, Passat-driving, real-estate doughboy who hangs around with women more than dudes. He's engaged to Rashida Jones, a hot-in-a-TV-sitcom-sort-of-way girl. Rudd is happier making Jones and her friends root beer floats than playing poker with a bunch of burping, farting guys. Yeah, so? Me too. Because I know that if I hang out with girls long enough they'll eventually invite me to a lingerie sleepover that gets out of hand. I've seen it all too often on Cinemax to pretend it never happens.

Jones worries that Rudd doesn't have guy friends. The imbalance of bridesmaids to groomsmen might be awkward at their wedding. There is supposedly some deeper concern, but the bridesmaid one is the only one clearly enunciated. Never mind that Rudd is completely happy with his life and with Jones. The story is that he must have guy friends to hang out with because that's what Coors Light says straight guys do.

Rudd goes on a quest to find a friend to serve as best man at his nuptials. The movie follows the plot of every lame romantic comedy, except with the twist that Rudd is a straight guy looking for a straight guy. Rudd connects with one man, only to learn he is gay. Another "date" is too high-pitched and into American soccer. Another is 89-years-old. Finally, he meets Jason Segel, a slacker (this is a Judd Apatow imitation, after all) who eats the free sandwiches at one of Rudd's open houses. That's the "meet cute".

Segel is a supremely confident bachelor. He turned his garage into a "man-cave" full of apparently guy stuff, like drums and guitars. You know, because chicks never play musical instruments, or watch a lot of TV, or jerk off in a special chair. Wait a minute. Isn't there a whole industry of pornos about women getting off in special chairs? Segel has fully embraced his manhood. He only does guy stuff and has no woman seriously in his life. He and Rudd hit it off over their shared love for the ubershitty rock band Rush. They jam, they hang out on the beach. Segel teaches Rudd how to be more like an asshole, beer commercial kid of guy.

Of course, things go awry. Fianc»e Jones feels that Segel is trying to keep Rudd from marrying her and moving on to having a family. Segel tries too hard to make Rudd happy. There is a breakup, a near cancellation of the wedding, and then the last minute reconciliation that satisfies everyone and proves they can all get along, and that Jones understand Rudd's need to have a guy friend.

The movie is likeable. It's alos long and predictable. Rudd is a nice enough guy, though his character wears out a gag where he tries to mash up his English to sound cool. Like calling a vacation a "vacay" or some weird thing about a "squiznot." Rudd is mostly the straight man, here, with the exception of when he projectile vomits on another guy. Segel is the agitator and comedic source. He's an honest guy with no pretentions. He rides a Vespa and hangs out with guys because he's comfortable with it. He also has an uncanny ability to sense when someone's about to fart. Jones is smiley, but not particularly interesting. There are many good bit parts played by good comic actors. Rob Heubel and Aziz Ansari from Human Giant are in it with funny roles. Jon Favreau has a really great bit as a bitter, angry prick. Even Andy Samberg does a nice, subtle job as Rudd's gay brother.

The problem, though, is that to like I Love You, Man, you have to buy into the whole idea that men need to hang out with other men and act like they've got testosterone pouring out their eyeballs. You have to believe in Axe body deodorant, that the douches in Captain Morgan ads are clever sons of bitches and that Tim Allen's schtick is still funny. You also have to not be sick of Judd Apatow-style comedies about "bromances". I'm just about there. Three Fingers.

Want to tell Filthy Something?



Earl Dittman of Wireless "Magazine"

Knowing is "Heart-stopping!"

What the fuck does that mean? It stops your heart and you die? Is that supposed to be a good thing?

Filthy's Reading
Chris Ware - The Best American Comics 2007

Listening to
Talking Heads - Little Creatures


Two-Lane Blacktop