February 10, 2016

"The humor website Funny or Die on Wednesday began streaming a 50-minute comedy that finds [Johnny] Depp portraying [Donald Trump,] the businessman turned politician, full-blown comb-over and all."

"Kept a secret for months — no small task in Hollywood — 'Funny or Die Presents Donald Trump’s The Art of the Deal: The Movie' was released to coincide with Mr. Trump’s victory on Tuesday in the New Hampshire Republican presidential primary.

"Funny or Die Made a Trump Biopic, Starring Johnny Depp."

I watched a couple minutes, and Depp seemed to be trying hard and getting at least some things right. I had to stop, partly because I'm not that interested and mostly because I'm too busy to sit around watching something for 50 minutes.

IN THE COMMENTS: Nonapod said:
Weirdly I think that Trump is probably more difficult to satire and have it be really funny and interesting. Let's face it, the real Trump is already pretty ridiculous and well mined in terms of comedy. I don't think you're going to get an original take on the guy at this point. 
Trump also plays himself comically. When spoofing big shots, you'll have an easier time if the guy is inflexibly serious.

32 comments:

David Ragsdale said...

I think the problem with Hollywood's attempt to satirize the Right is that in the entire turnkey creative process, there's probably not one single person involved who doesn't viscerally loathe the figure being satirized.

Really good satire, like Evelyn Waugh, sortta depends on a type of love/hate thing. Not just hate/hate.

David Ragsdale said...

(which is why Hollywood's attempts at Obama-humor fall flat too, love/love doesn't work either)

Limited blogger said...

All things Trump only make Trump stronger. I predict, without watching it, that it will blow up in their faces, and may eventually be used in future Trump rallies.

Johnny Depp also will probably vote for the Donald.

tim maguire said...

I can't imagine watching the equivalent of a 50-minute SNL sketch. Cut it down to 90 seconds and I'm there!

tim maguire said...

David Ragsdale said...
I think the problem with Hollywood's attempt to satirize the Right is that in the entire turnkey creative process, there's probably not one single person involved who doesn't viscerally loathe the figure being satirized.

Really good satire, like Evelyn Waugh, sortta depends on a type of love/hate thing. Not just hate/hate.


Talledega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby--all too often I hear about how Americans can't laugh at themselves, or I laugh myself at left-wing hit jobs failing at the box office. But the right (mostly) loved Ricky Bobby, it worked because Ferrell clearly appreciates the culture he's making fun of.

damikesc said...

With their name and their output, how aren't they dead yet?

Talledega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby--all too often I hear about how Americans can't laugh at themselves, or I laugh myself at left-wing hit jobs failing at the box office. But the right (mostly) loved Ricky Bobby, it worked because Ferrell clearly appreciates the culture he's making fun of.

I didn't love it, but a little Ferrell goes a long way with me.

BDNYC said...

I love how it's perfectly okay to make gay jokes if you target someone on the Right. I'm surprised they didn't call Roy Cohn the f word.

David Ragsdale said...

BDNYC- and back to Waugh, the key scene in Scoop where the Socialist reporter literally slaps a waiter for bad service so that the 'contradictions inherent in the system' can better come to the fore. Remember, there's 'truth' and 'revolutionary truth'.

David Ragsdale said...

In the sense that I imagine a lot of people, especially 'creative types' adopt a left-wing pose precisely so they can more, better maneuver their freedom in the pc monolith. Or, why young dudes go full on abortion-rights activism, which allows them to more fully play-lay their female conquests.

Nonapod said...

Weirdly I think that Trump is probably more difficult to satire and have it be really funny and interesting. Let's face it, the real Trump is already pretty ridiculous and well mined in terms of comedy. I don't think you're going to get an original take on the guy at this point.

MadisonMan said...

I also do not have 50 minutes to spare. And to sustain funny for 50 minutes? I have my doubts.

Is there a Cliff Notes version?

traditionalguy said...

All PR is good PR. Thanks go to Johnny Depp.

n.n said...

Imitation is the sincerest form of comic psychology. We get it. Vote for Trump.

tim in vermont said...

First the President of Mexico comes out for Trump, now Johnny Depp. You have to hand it to the guy.

Quaestor said...

Depp is marvel of the actor's craft, perhaps one of the ten best to ever perform on film, but he's not funny. He simply lacks whatever quality it is that makes comedic actors. The few comedic roles he's had are about as funny as a tooth extraction.

Brando said...

"Weirdly I think that Trump is probably more difficult to satire and have it be really funny and interesting. Let's face it, the real Trump is already pretty ridiculous and well mined in terms of comedy. I don't think you're going to get an original take on the guy at this point."

What's left for the satirist to do with Trump? He already called one of his rivals a p*ssy for suggesting torturing people might violate the Constitution. His core philosophy is "trust me, all I do is win" and when you point out things he failed at he says "those were really wins". Darrell Hammond usually does funny impressions because he can make serious people look silly--Trump doesn't have any seriousness to satirize so it falls flat.

Brando said...

"Really good satire, like Evelyn Waugh, sortta depends on a type of love/hate thing. Not just hate/hate."

A good example is Portlandia. The creators are clearly leftist, but they spoof leftists quite well on that show. You get a sense there's an appreciation of those people that the average American wouldn't see.

Or "Black Dynamite"--one of the best spoofs I've ever seen. And you didn't get the sense the director looked down on Blaxploitation films so much as he could understand them and appreciate their ridiculousness.

JaimeRoberto said...

Would this be legal without Citizens United?

clint said...

It will be interesting to hear Bush and all the Democrats condemn this.

They all think it should be a crime, right?

Curious George said...

"MadisonMan said...
I also do not have 50 minutes to spare. And to sustain funny for 50 minutes? I have my doubts.

Is there a Cliff Notes version?"

This sucks. The End.

Curious George said...

You owe me 49:58 MM

M Jordan said...

Trump is imminently caricaturizeable. Those who say he's already a caricature and thus can't be done are wrong, wrong, wrong.

The key to caricature is to highlight the traits that people recognize ONLY WHEN YOU BRING THEM OUT. So don't do the hair, the "Yuge" (boy, is that getting old), the insults. Instead find those quirks that are there (and there are plenty) and embellish them.

Like his tendency to say, "Believe me" and "I can tell you ..." Or his disgust-face. Whatever.

Obama was never caricaturized and people say it was because he is so righteous. Of course, that's complete bull. It's because he is black. Everyone was afraid to. Remember the rodeo clown who tried? He lost his job and had to take sensitivity training.

Anybody can be satirized. It just takes skill and observation.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

Its pretty hard to satirize someone who has enough of a sense of humor about themselves to be willing to do this.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AiZqFGLAeAc

Quaestor said...

Trump is imminently caricaturizeable.

That's a pretty cool neologism, caricaturizeable. It makes perfect sense in print, but it doesn't exactly trip gracefully off the tongue... actually it does trip -- down the stairs, over the couch, through the living room window with a resounding crash, and on to the lawn flat on its back. It's the Harold Lloyd of neologisms.

David Ragsdale said...

Satire also works when it reveals a truth about a person that is contrary to their public persona and actions.

I imagine a salient satire of Trump would show him, at home, sitting quietly and reading, devouring articles, essays, info from the internet.. Every so often just cracking a grin and murmuring "isn't that interesting...'

FullMoon said...

Quaestor said... [hush]​[hide comment]

Trump is imminently caricaturizeable.

That's a pretty cool neologism, caricaturizeable. It makes perfect sense in print, but it doesn't exactly trip gracefully off the tongue... actually it does trip -- down the stairs, over the couch, through the living room window with a resounding crash, and on to the lawn flat on its back. It's the Harold Lloyd of neologisms.


pretty funny, and I learned two new words to use down at the pool hall.

jr565 said...

They make him sound like a virulent racist but lovable at the same time. Not sure, if they are trying to destroy his chances if they are not in fact helping him out

J Scott said...

It was a strange thing. I admire the effort involved. Kenny Loggins did the theme song. It was funny but I'm not sure it will hit the mark the producers expected. The racism charge, the simplest and laziest hit just doesn't work well in this. That's partly because they make everyone basically racist, Merv Griffin, the jewish lawyer, the architect and also because the video is blatantly anti-Semitic. And I don't think people will see Trump the character as being homophobic as much as the makers of the film, especially that Merv Griffin prostate cancer joke.

William said...

I saw about fifteen minutes. Not that good. Too meta. It was meant to satirize the hysterical overreaction that Hollywood people have to conservatives, but its target audience didn't get the joke.

averagejoe said...

Unsurprisingly, completely unfunny. Depp, Ron Howard, Alfred Molina, Christopher Lloyd, an all-star cast and crew and still this effort is stillborn. Remember those movies where the kids get together and put on a show? This is what it looks like when the kids are condescending humorless scolds, and the show sucks...

gerry said...

Depp's movies have been very bad for a long time now.

amr said...

I'm with JaimeRoberto.
If Hillary is elected, she'll be sure that Funny Or Die is the Supreme Court case that overturns Citizens United.