contemplating contemporary cinema

christopher funderburg, john cribbs & paul cooney


Never afraid of courting controversy, John Cribbs and Paul Cooney have recently been insisting that the widely reviled Saturday Night Live sketch-turned-Will Forte feature film, MacGruber, is actually good. Both men highlighted it in their Years in Review as a stand-out comedy in a relatively mirtheless 2010, if not the standout comedy of 2010. Cooney, for his part, wouldn't shut the hell up about it, going so far as to alert Chris Funderburg the moment it became available on Netflix and demanding he watch it. The following is a recap of their discussion of the pop cultural non-phenomenon and just what it means for a film to truly be funny. Their back and forth turned into a referendum on comedy, on life, on art. On Macgruber.

Some more background is required: Funderburg once inexplicably recommended that Cooney watch both The Benchwarmers and School for Scoundrels, something he has apologized for repeatedly. And, yes, everyone is serious about liking Mr. Woodcock. It's good, you should see it. As for MacGruber? read on (and please note that none of us care how to spell Ryan Phillippe's name)... The scene begins with Cooney responding to a voice-mail from Funderburg informing him that Forte's finest had just been popped into the dvd player at Fort Funderburg...  



paul cooney:


There is some serious serendipity going on right about now. Just last night I was watching Rapid Fire, with the great Powers Boothe and the dead Brandon Lee, a fine fine film, despite the female lead lacking in looks, charm and fortitude. Thankfully La Boothe more than made up for that deficiency with the awesome power of his awesomeness. No doubt at this very moment you are enjoying Boothe tear shit up in MacGruber, which is even better than Mr. Woodcock.

"hope you enjoy being date raped"  

"that's my daughter"


speaking of hilarity,  Jessie Camacho's big brown boobies have jiggled several times thanks to the whimsy of america's greatest slacker, Paul Rien. The latest jocular tit juggling took place as a result of her tweeting, "anyone going to the Miami Boat Show?  These boats are insane!" I replied, "I'm at the Pompano Beach Inflatable Raft's far less impressive." To which she replied, LOL!! No doubt anyone with her at that moment got to enjoy seeing her round brown globes heave with great mirth, and to them I say, you're welcome.

So far she gets the most kicks out of my tweets, with isis love, brigette b and nat kelley not far behind. In other exciting news...  Donal Logue is on the twitter!  he is friends with sarah shahi apparently. I'll keep you updated with his twitter musings, once you're finished with macgrubes...

Val Kilmer himself




So I'm the unwitting victim of a stupid joke, right? This has all been one extended goof on ol' Funderburg? Because MacGruber is not better than The Benchwarmers. I'm not saying it sucked and certainly its case was helped by my having watched Hot Tub Time Machine on Friday, but MacGruber had maybe 2 chucklers in it and no gut-busters. Too much SNL "mumble the word 'butt' repeatedly" humor. Not enough Kilmer. Certainly not enough Chris Jericho. No attractive women. There were barely even any jokes in it and so many of the repeated bits fucking blew: "I'll suck your dick, you can fuck me," celery in the ass, the goofy noises he makes during sex, the car radio shit, wacky 80's music, the soft-rock gag just a bunch of unfunny garbage.

John, you were even-tempered in your recommendation, but Cooney, you should fucking apologize you fucking jackass. This is worse than the time you had my look up Danni Cole and her weird nipples and mediocre body. That was an outrage.

I didn't hate the movie, but it's no Mr. Woodcock. And I was told EXPLICITLY that it was another Mr. Woodock.

Thanks for nothing, guys. Thanks for nothing.




I knew it...I knew it had been built up too much.  If you went into it expecting nothing, as I did, it would have worked for you. With all the hype, you clearly can't appreciate the nuances of MacGruber's obsession with the license plate (an obvious reference to Out for Justice!), fucking his wife's ghost on the tombstone, Ryan Phillipe's incredible straight man performance etc.

Same thing happened with my brother, who professes to be a Will Forte fan (!) - I recommended it and he wasn't into it. That's right Funderburg - you and my brother have the exact same taste. I mean I realize MacGruber was no thrilling Patriots victory, but I'm surprised you didn't like it more...

Also, Hot Tub Time Machine isn't really worth talking about, but it wasn't as awful as you make it out to be. Maybe you're just in a grumpy mood this year. "No Woodcock" - nothing is as good as Woodcock! Is anyone even questioning that he killed that kid's kitten?!





Phillipe is legit. And the best scene was where MacGruber explains why Von Cunth hates him. But the movie was just mediocre. Nothing that I should have gone out of my way to see. And too many "wacky 80's fashion and music" jokes which are 100% unacceptable in this day and age. Seriously, the "movies playing up hilarious 80's tropes" probably outnumber actually 80's movies at this point.

Blame Paul for the Woodcock comparison: he told me MacGruber WAS JUST AS GOOD. I expected it be maybe half as good. At best, it was 1/8 as good.



paul cooney:

My greatest coup yet.  The Agent Provocateur strikes again...did you really expect MacGruber to be good?  It made 4 million bux.  It starred Will Forte.  You jerky bloody fool! We got him Cribbs!  We got him!  Cribbs and I came up with this plot as retribution for the School for Scoundrels and Benchwarmers double bill recommended inexplicably by La Funderburg.  

I can't believe you wasted a Netflix flix on MacGruber!  Omg!!!

All kidding aside... your poor heartless bastard.  I pity a man who can't embrace MacGrubes. Was it built up too much?  Of course it was.  When you find it as a pleasant surprise it's a delight, but when you go into it thinking it's going to be the best movie since Benchwarmers you're going to be hurt and violated, dare I say, visually raped.

"I'll suck your dick!"  That joke didn't work?  Are you crazy?  He only did it twice so I wouldn't call that a repeated joke that failed... Powers Boothe coming into the office and finding macgrubes with his pants around his ankles trying to fuck an inanimate object in hopes of cajoling Phillippe to joining him. You don't find that funny?  Are you stoonad? The part where Kilmer confesses that he blew up his super team of thugs and macgruber is shocked, "OMG!  You're kidding me! You did that too!  'cause the same thing happened to me!"

"Oh n,o wait I didn't do that cause I'm not a fucking retard"
That was hilarious, and coming right on the heels of the date rape joke!
Kilmer calling for more spritz on the naked old woman
Macgrubes blowing the element of surprise and grabbing the mic from the dj..."I will kill this woman...ya friggin turds"
Phillippe acknowledging that the celery in the ass bit worked
The hitler calzone!

The part where he reveals why kilmer hates him was are right about that

I'll acknowledge the soft rock joke and the running gag with the portable stereo were weak, Wiig was wiggity wack, my girl Maya Rudolph brought little to the table, it could have used more Jericho and at least one hot lady.  It's not perfect!

However...his nonstop hostility to Phillippe?  awesome! I can't believe Cribb's brother classifies himself as a Forte fan, and yet didn't like MacGrubes...what the fuck do you like then?  The Boondock Saints? Macgruber was 'nothing i should have gone out of my way to see'... this from the rascal who admits to watching no less than 3 episodes of The Defenders!  Going out of your way to see Macgrubes at least spared you from the trash you wade naturally into!  Ya friggin turd!

Just seeing Powers Boothe alone was worth taking you away from the usual nonsense you watch... You're welcome.

It's better than Mr. Woodcock!  I said it's just as good as Rapid Fire!

Instructing Wiig to get the tip back when she's in the cafe!

Classic MacGruber!

I'm going to watch that shit again.




Yes Paul, my brother and Chris Funderburg love The Boondock Saints... but they were both disappointed by the sequel. What about when Von Cunth plans on framing MacGruber? "I swear to god I did not do that!" "I know fuckwit, I did!" That joke stands up against anything from the fine first 45 minutes of The Other Guys.

I might be misremembering, but I expected it to be nothing but stupid 80's-themed jokes, music/fashion/Richard Dean Anderson cameo etc, and found the movie surprisingly restrained when it came to that stuff. It was at least better at shelving that shit than, say, Starsky and Hutch or a typical episode of How I Met Your Mother. Don't forget Cooney to credit Phillipe for doing the celery gag himself - no stunt ass for the great Ryan Phillipe, who has finally made good on the promise of Cruel Intentions.

As good as Rapid Fire, though? Let's not go bananas. I'm not signing my name to that one. I only remember one joke from Benchwarmers, and I guess I need to see School for Scoundrels to officiate that argument. But Alastair Sim is no Will Forte, I think we can all argee on that one.

Yeah, there's another page of this. No one's making you read it. Asshole.

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