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PCR # 238  (Vol. 5, No. 42)  This edition is for the week of October 11--17, 2004.

This Week's PCR
Movie Review
"Team America: World Police"

Movie review by:
Michael A. Smith

Three and a half stars

Movies are rated 0 to 4 stars

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 by Will Moriaty
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 by Mike Smith
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Starring the voices of: Trey Parker, Matt Stone and Dian Bachar
Directed by: Trey Parker
Rated: R
Running Time: 1 hour 40 mins

Remember back in the good old days when your television was full of rocket ships and spacemen? Shows like "The Thunderbirds" did their best to entertain us, even though it was obvious that they were marionettes. The creators of "South Park" obviously remember, however their memories are just a little different from mine.

"Team America" is the story of an elite group of anti-terrorists specialists. As the film opens, they overthrow a group of bad guys in Paris, oblivious to the fact that they had to destroy the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de' Triomphe and the Louvre to do it. Sadly, they also lose one of their own. While the team rest from their battle, their leader scouts out and finds a new team member, Gary. Gary had the rare college double major of drama and foreign languages and is currently appearing on Broadway in the musical, "Leased." Persuaded to join the group, Joe puts his acting ability to the test by "becoming" a terrorist and infiltrating a plot to destroy the world headed up by real life Korean dictator Kim Jong Il. What follows is a virtual smorgasbord of action, violence and sex. Oh, and did I mention it's a musical?

It's been five years since Parker and Stone unleashed the "South Park" movie on America. Not only was it one of the most original musicals ever made, but it pointed out in a sly way how the content of American movies has changed. Blood and guts were fine, but a few naughty words and the youth of this country were doomed. Here they take on the over emphasis of celebrities and politics. From Michael Moore to Alec Baldwin, from Sean Penn to Martin Sheen, Parker and Stone score repeatedly with dead on images that could have been taken from your daily news. Do I need Tim Robbins or Matt Damon to tell me how to vote? Should I look to Helen Hunt before I make my opinion of world events? Heck no! And that is the message inside the film.

Anyone familiar with the "South Park" show and film know that the language will be salty. In fact, the film underwent a total of ten revisions before it received an "R" rating. So beware, the language, blood shed (yes, the puppets bleed) and graphic sex (think Ken and Barbie) are pretty strong. But so are the laughs. And after seeing this movie, I'll never look at "Davey and Goliath" the same way again!

On a scale of zero to four stars, I give "Team America"  Three and a half stars

This week's movie review of "Team America: World Police" is ©2004 by Michael A. Smith.  All graphics this page are creations of Nolan B. Canova, ©2004, all rights reserved. All contents of "Nolan's Pop Culture Review" are ©2004 by Nolan B. Canova.