Friday, January 13, 2006

The Overrated Classic: Installment 1

What is the Overrated Classic? It can be applied to any art form but for now I’ll discuss the concept as it relates to film. Simply put, the Overrated Classic (called the “OC” from this point on) is

a) A great piece of work, exceedingly entertaining and worthy of multiple viewings.
b) Overrated beyond comprehension.

The OC is a rare breed. There are many overrated films that simply aren’t that good. This essay isn’t about those films so I won’t mention them other than to say that trilogies filmed in New Zealand and Marin County are prime suspects. No, the OC must be a work of quality. Also, the OC must be wildly overrated, not just mildly overhyped. Thus, Three Kings doesn’t fit the bill.

I am not making a list. But, from time to time on PS&HB, I will discuss an OC. I will essentially be creating an “Overrated Classic Hall of Fame.” Perhaps at a future point I will feel confident enough to create a “Top 10 OC” list. Is the OC acronym annoying yet? I thought so.


a) A great piece of work, exceedingly entertaining and worthy of multiple viewings.
b) Overrated beyond comprehension.

Overrated Classic Hall of Fame Entry #1:

Groundhog Day

I enjoyed this film the first time I saw it. And the second and third. I felt for Bill Murray’s knockabout mopeclown. I empathized with the dreary workaday routine – the clock radio was a fine touch. Andie Macdowell was tolerable – a feat she’s only otherwise achieved in Green Card. Just kidding about Green Card.

Today, while eating the worst fish burrito I've ever had, I agonized over this decision. If this were just slightly less entertaining, it would fail the first requirement of the OC. But it just gets in under the wire, by the pointy snout of Punxsutawney Phil.

Now, on to the second requirement: Overrated beyond comprehension. Here are some unattributed quotes taken out of context and off the internet about Groundhog Day:

"this movie changed my life"

"…that gives the film its remarkable spine"

"a closer look reveals a beauty not easily seen"

"a blazingly imaginative experience"

"the best comedy of the 90s"

Is that enough for you? I could go on. People have more unreasonable love for this movie than they do for carrot cake. This will surely crack my Top 10 OC list but like I said, there is no list for you today. Quit asking.

Check for more installments of the OC. Yes, I’m gonna keep calling it the OC. If I’m going to continually skewer sacred cows in a kebab of criticism, I might as well ratchet up the unfunny annoyance factor.


JC Coates said...

In the enormousmously funny words of Homer Simpson: Boooooooring!

Two words: King Kong.

In the enormously true words of Stan Lee: Nuff said.

thingsoncobras said...

Thank you for adding an entirely new classification to our depleted lexicon of criticl nomenclature. Future generations will thank you.