Tuesday, February 28, 2006

GUY X - what is it good for? Absolutely nothing.

There are lots of great films about the absurdity of war that combine black comedy with insightful social comment. GUY X is not one of them. GUY X is what happens when you take all that is wickedly funny, noble and true in M*A*S*H and CATCH-22 and then invert it. The film tells the story of a young soldier in 1979 who is posted to Greenland by mistake. Unable to resolve this clerical error he sets about writing the Base newspaper for the autocractic Colonel Woolrap while romancing Woolrap's chick. The movie fails to create the claustrophic, Kafka-esque atmosphere necessary and has NOT ONE SINGLE funny line or moment. The romance between Jason Biggs and Natasha McElhone is insipid. Worse still, McElhone and Jeremy Northam - two fine British actors - cannot do American accents. The final nail in the coffin is when the director lazily sticks "War (What is it good for?)" by Edwin Starr on the soundtrack. This is a brave move because as every funk fan knows, the response to the question is "absolutely nothing". Cue the inevitable title for my review....

GUY X played a bunch of minor Film Festivals including the oh-so-wittily named RAINDANCE festival in London in autumn 2005. It is currently on limited release in Canada and is available on Region 2 DVD.

1 comment:

  1. Plus, they speak Danish in Greenland, with a Greenlandish accent, rather than fake American, with an English accent.

    Life's tough.