Sunday, August 10, 2008

Tropic Thunder Boycott Blunder

There's a word to describe Special Olympic chairman Timothy Shriver's asinine call to boycott Tropic Thunder, but it would be impolite to use it. Nevertheless, Ian Spiegelman, who each weekend does a magnificent job standing up for things that profit and delight all of us, knows the score:

Tropical Thunder, the hilarious-looking movie-in-a-movie that has so far failed to score a boycott for featuring Robert Downey Jr. in blackface or Tom Cruise as reportedly the most offensive Jewish stereotype since...Well, I don't find those very offensive, so don't ask me. Anywho, Ben Stiller's character is an actor who failed to get an Oscar nod for portraying a "retard" in the film "Simple Jack". And that's what's getting the pic boy-the-fuck-cotted. "'Not only might it happen, it will happen,' Timothy P. Shriver, chairman of the Special Olympics, said of the expected push for a boycott." Because it's fine for actors to cynically go bobbing for Academy apples every year by playing a special character, but it's not okay for a comic actor to make fun of them for doing so.

And when the movie-going public inevitably ignores Shriver's inevitable boycott, he'll bring the government into it. "Mr. Shriver said that he had also begun to ask members of Congress for a resolution condemning what he called the movie’s 'hate speech' and calling for stronger federal support of the intellectually disabled. [...]
Mr. Shriver needs to get himself a grip. Wife of DCeiver, who works on the front lines of special education, says she's only too happy to see the makers of "treacly, cloying, bullshit movies" about the "special" get lampooned, adding that "there's nothing more offensive than movies like Sean Penn's I Am Sam. DID THEY BOYCOTT THAT?" I agree! In fact, was the horsewhipping Penn was due for that even scheduled? If not, I am all for horsewhipping him! With an additional caning, perhaps, for Mystic River, which similarly sucked upon canal water.


Cecile McVittie said...

Yup, no arguments DCeiver, except on one point. Your darling wife works in Special Ed., but does she have a child with special needs? If she works in a secondary school, guaranteed she's going to hear the phrase "full-on retard" applied to every stupid thing teenagers do to each other. Every time I hear the word it's like fingernails. My daughter can't do anything to defend herself from that kind of stupidity. She just gets to take it. Is that right? Is it OK for her (and others) to live with depression because she knows she's seen as less than human, or excluded because no one wants to be seen with the "retard?" This is my pain. It's not funny.

The Deceiver said...

"Is it OK for her (and others) to live with depression because she knows she's seen as less than human, or excluded because no one wants to be seen with the 'retard?'"

Well, naturally, I do not think that is okay. And nothing in my post comes even close to implying otherwise.

Anonymous said...

The folks in the autism community are fed up with this movie. I believe that the best way to cure ignorance such as the kind we see portrayed in this movie, is by education. People wanting to learn about autism can listen to the free audio podcasts offered by Midnight In Chicago at

movie junkie said...

Ben Stiller has a track record of doing anything for a laugh (i'm thinking Heartbreak Kid, yuck)