God Bless America

To label myself “liberal” would be an understatement; my intolerance of intolerance can get pretty excessive, my awareness of it not seeming to matter in the slightest. I can be a total left wing asshole.

So yeah, when I saw the trailer for Bobcat Goldthwait‘s God Bless America earlier this year, I was pretty stoked. A guy that goes and kills every pet peeve posted on Reddit? Reality TV stars, people who talk on their phone in movie theatres, hate groups, and bigoted TV hosts all get their due. Cool.

But even as a liberal, Goldthwait’s attacks and cliched representation of Christians gets to be a bit much – the Westboro Baptist killing spree is awesome, but the extreme portrayal of Tea Party members is ridiculous and inaccurate. And yeah, these are the people I love to hate on the most. That says something.

Joel Murray and Tara Lynne Barr are great as the depressed Frank and amped up Roxy, driving home the notion that, while Roxy’s generation may be the “liberal” one, there are some Baby Boomers that are fed up with shit today as well. Solid message. Beyond that, there isn’t much to praise – at first, the killing is fun and Frank’s rants are relatable and thought-provoking. However, as the movie drags on, so do the (now seemingly) pointless killings, and Frank’s speeches are tiresome and rehashed. There is no message development – even when Frank and Roxy realize that killing the TV host will turn him into a martyr, they do it anyways. There is no actual thought put in to their actions – which makes them just as bad, if not worse, than the people they are killing. If that’s the intended message, I missed it, and if so, my view on this film may shift a bit. But it doesn’t feel that way – it feels pointless and hateful.

God Bless America has made me rethink the way I approach the right wing. I will always be a liberal, but a more open-minded one. Funny how two characters I really wanted to get behind have instead left me sick and self-analytical.

This is not right.

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