Team America: World Police

"OK"

Team America: World Police Review


Exploding tourist landmarks and idiotic romantic triangles, like an asinine Jerry Bruckheimer blockbuster! Remorseless civilian casualties and bad WMD intelligence, like an U.S.-led war of liberation! Cartoonishly villainous terrorists and dictators like Kim Jong Il! Sanctimonious actors blaming America for the world's ills, like Alec Baldwin and Tim Robbins! And Michael Moore blowing up Mount Rushmore!

If nothing else, "South Park" creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have made sure "Team America: World Police," their marionette mockery of action movies and testosterone-fed ethnocentricity, is an equal-opportunity offender.

Yes, you read right: marionettes. But these are no "Thunderbirds" string-dolls with few movable parts and no facial expressions. They're high-tech -- and anatomically correct.

Frequently hilarious just because it's so absurd, "Team America" features a squadron of on-call puppet action-heroes who fly around the world fighting puppet terrorists who wear puppet turbans and speak in Middle-Eastern-sounding guttural gobbledygook when they make puppet threats against puppet freedom.

To the tune of a rock-out action theme that declares "America, f--- yeah!," the team saves Paris (3,500 miles east of America, a title card notes) in the opening scene, assuming they'll bask in fawning Gallic gratitude for destroying only the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe and a few dozen bystanders in the process. Later terrorists blow up the Panama Canal in Central America (2,193 miles south of the real America) in a satirical disaster-movie set piece made on a laughably miniature scale.

And when a conspiracy emerges involving North Korea and the Film Actors Guild (its acronym becomes a running gag), Parker and Stone lay waste to Sean Penn, Susan Sarandon and their celebrity-activist ilk in a gratuitously bloody, laugh-out-loud, puppet-fu and shoot-'em-up scene.

I've barely scratched the surface of the insanity and irreverence in this snarky lampoon of current world events, but "Team America" isn't nearly as sharp or clandestinely astute as it should have been, given the history of its ambitious and incisive creators.

Parker and Stone get many guffaws by being gross (a won't-believe-your-eyes elongated barf scene), graphic (a won't-believe-your-eyes elongated puppet sex scene) and politically incorrect, but the comedy is even more scattershot than the toy machine-gun fire.

The picture is a spoof of Bruckheimer's brain-dead action movies ("Armageddon," "Pearl Harbor") even more than it is a political satire, and as such it becomes overly reliant on deliberately stupid action-genre clichés. By building its plot on a foundation of catch phrases and stereotypes, the movie eventually becomes tiresome in the same way Bruckheimer movies do.

This isn't to say "Team America" won't have those with a political mind and an appreciation of lowbrow antics rolling in the aisles. But it will quickly be forgotten in a way "South Park" never will.



Team America: World Police

Facts and Figures

Run time: 98 mins

In Theaters: Friday 15th October 2004

Box Office USA: $32.7M

Distributed by: Paramount Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 77%
Fresh: 148 Rotten: 45

IMDB: 7.2 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Hidden Figures Movie Review

Hidden Figures Movie Review

This film recounts such a great true story that we don't mind the fact that...

The Founder Movie Review

The Founder Movie Review

This is the story of Ray Kroc, the man who created the concept of McDonald's....

John Wick: Chapter 2 Movie Review

John Wick: Chapter 2 Movie Review

Keanu Reeves picks up his supremely efficient hitman immediately where the 2015 original left him:...

Fences Movie Review

Fences Movie Review

After winning Tony Awards on Broadway, Denzel Washington and Viola Davis reteam for a film...

The Lego Batman Movie Movie Review

The Lego Batman Movie Movie Review

A spin-off from 2014's awesome The Lego Movie, this raucously paced action-comedy is proof that...

The Space Between Us Movie Review

The Space Between Us Movie Review

While the premise of this movie makes it look like a sci-fi adventure, the truth...

Toni Erdmann Movie Review

Toni Erdmann Movie Review

On paper, the idea of a two-hour 40-minute German comedy may not seem very promising,...

Advertisement
Gold Movie Review

Gold Movie Review

Based on a true story, this lively and sometimes outrageous adventure is packed with twists...

Loving Movie Review

Loving Movie Review

While this film tackles a huge issue in the history of race relations in America,...

T2 Trainspotting Movie Review

T2 Trainspotting Movie Review

It's been 20 years since we last saw four freewheeling young junkies from Edinburgh spiral...

Hacksaw Ridge Movie Review

Hacksaw Ridge Movie Review

Based on an astounding true story, this battlefield drama mixes warm emotion with intense action...

Sing Movie Review

Sing Movie Review

The quality of the animation in this musical comedy may not be up to Pixar...

Jackie Movie Review

Jackie Movie Review

Rather than make a standard biopic about the most famous First Lady in American history,...

Split Movie Review

Split Movie Review

After a few badly received sci-fi blockbusters, M. Night Shyamalan returned to his earthier style...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.