Monday, March 12, 2012

2012 King of the Hill Movie Challenge

Clueless v. Super Troopers

I've already watched three movies for the month of March.  One of the movies is exempt from the 2012 King of the Hill Movie Challenge (I'll post on this later).  For the start of the month, I'm going to pit the first two movies watched against each other.  I'll be comparing the comedy Clueless to the comedy Super Troopers.  Despite both being comedies, these were very different films and only one can walk away the winner.

For those who do not know, the 2012 King of the Hill Movie Challenge is my system for determining the best movie of year that I saw. One movie from each month will be selected and, at the end of the year, I will do a tournament style showdown where they will take each other on until the final movie has been selected. Bracket placement will be determined by the number of movies the monthly movie faced and won.

First Challenger:  Clueless

Writer/Director:  Amy Heckerling

Starting:  Alicia Silverstone, Stacey Dash, Brittany Murphy

Clueless is a school-aged romantic tragedy involving Cher (Alicia Silverstone), a Clueless valley girl with an endless wardrobe and her attempt to argue her way out of bad grades all the while working on her pet project of turning new girl Tai (Brittany Murphy) into a popular pretty girl.  Cher runs into a bunch of trouble and is frequently bailed out by her father's ex-step-son Josh (Paul Rudd).

There is something about Clueless that makes it different from the normal lot of movies.  When I tried to nail down the story in a brief summary, I realized what that is.  Clueless isn't a typical movie.  Most movies establish a premise early on and build off of that premise as the movie progresses.  In Clueless, the movie is character driven.  You start with one plot, a superficial attempt of Cher to improve her grades that evolves into a story about her developing a character with substance.  This is a unique break from the dramatic structure and, in my opinion is what has made this movie age well even if the technology of the movie has not.

Second Challenger:  Super Troopers

Director:  Jay Chandrasekhar

Writer:  Broken Lizard

Staring:  Jay Chandrasekhar, Kevin Heffernan, and André Vippolis

Super Troopers is a silly film about a group of Highway Patrolmen about to lose funding as part of budget cuts to the Vermont State budget.  The group of goofy cops are trying to prove their worth despite the interference and rivalry with the local police force.  The movie is as much about these goofy cops and their crazy antics as it is about their attempt to save their budgets.

What you have with Super Troopers, is a group of characters with a strange bit of chemistry going through a loose plot while having lots of crazy one, extremely funny scenes that have little to no contribution to the main plot.  These scenes are, without a doubt, entertaining and well worth the watch.  For example, everyone should know how to play the meow game, that's just downright hilarious.

Final Verdict:
Clueless is a movie that a character's development.  Super Troopers is a selection of hilarious scenes and events strung together around a central plot.  Both are entertaining, but only Clueless has the substance that makes it the winner of the 2012 King of the Hill Challenge

Winner:  Clueless

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