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Team America: World Police /

Rated: R

Starring: Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Kristen Miller, Masasa, Maurice LaMarche, Daran Norris

Directed by: Trey Parker

Produced by: Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Scott Rudin
Written by: Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Pam Brady
Distributor: Paramount Pictures


Team America's Chris, Sarah and Joe in Paramount's Team America: World Police
North Korean leader Kim Jung Il in Paramount's Team America: World Police
Two Parisians in Paramount's Team America: World Police

     Trey Parker and Matt Stone are the crudest, least heroic heroes that I will ever have. After dabbling for years in their profane and sophomoric indulgences on Comedy Central’s animated “South Park” and then shoving its characters into a spectacular motion picture, the two have finally entered the political region of satire’s gigantic map. The result is one that is less likeable than some of their previous works, but funnier and more daring, at the same time. Team America: World Police may be the most tasteless film I have ever seen in my entire life, but that didn’t bother me in the least. It’s downright hysterical 

     The outrageous idea, itself, is enough to make anyone laugh out of pure disbelief. How ever did two warped guys convince a major movie studio to finance a comedy about terrorists, starring marionettes? But, all viewers must keep in mind that this is a Parker/Stone film, as they watch it. The two sophomoric, but tasteful filmmakers don’t pretend as if they don’t know about the boundaries of humor and offensiveness. They just like to push them as far as they can, which just so happens to be a very long way. Nevertheless, Team America enchanted me.

     The movie follows a group of terrorist-hunters who dub themselves as “Team America,” and are sent on missions by their central computer called I.N.T.E.L.L.I.G.E.N.C.E. The opening scene of the movie follows them hunting down a group of terrorists who have a weapon of mass destruction in Paris, France. There, one of their team members, the beloved fiancé of co-worker Lisa (voiced by Kristen Miller), is tragically killed by the enemy. To replace him, they must recruit Gary (voiced by Parker), an actor from the Broadway-musical “Lease”. Gary will be Team America’s token performer, acting his way into terrorists meetings and babbling made-up lines of Farsi and emphasizing the word “Jihad” at any oppurtunity he has.

     As Gary goes into makeup, North Korean Prime Minister Kim Jong Il (Parker) is planning 9/11 X 1,000, in which he will release bombs all over the world, and lead a new world order. He will do this by pressing a button in his palace after Alec Baldwin (voiced by Maurice LaMarche) delivers a peace-bringing speech on behalf of the Film Actor’s Guild (F.A.G.), which has belonging members such as Sean Penn, Tim Robbins, and Susan Sarandon. Between this and a suicide-bomber version of Michael Moore, with mustarded-hotdogs in hand, the Team has their hands full.

     Keep in mind, all of this is acted out as a puppet-play. When one member of Team America drops his gun in favor of fist fighting with a terrorist and “Making things interesting,” the two basically bob up and down. Apparently, puppet’s arms do not extend, in favor of crushing each other with fists. They do, however, have hollow insides which can hold two minutes worth of vomit inside of them. When a character gives another oral sex, we see the recipient’s face amidst the swaying strings of the other puppet.

     Team America: World Police makes fun of both political parties, but thankfully, targets most of its jokes at the left. I finally sense a bit of balance amdist Hollywood, thanks to Parker and Stone. The best thing of all is: this movie doesn’t even pretend to be factual. It goes ahead and mocks anyone and everyone that it wants to, when it wants to. In all of its grossness, Team America actually has something to say about current-day-liberals. After Gary delivers a gut-busting scatological analogy about the relationship left, the right, and the true enemy, out-staging Alec Baldwin at Kim Jong Il’s F.A.G. par-tay, his opponent, the actor-turned-political-figure, responds “But…but…the environment! And…global warming!” Consider the unfortunate reality in that comment.

     Amazingly, the film does not directly toss cheap-shots at either presidential candidate. The truth is that it really doesn’t need to. Parker and Stone have made a satire that is crudely observant, mocking the real fools of the earth, and not wasting time on anyone else. In a sense, it is a scary movie, marionettes or not. Make no mistake, I’m not saying that there are any major truths in Team America: World Police, but it did make me think of some of its outspoken targets’ real priorities. F-Words and puppet sex and nudity included, Team America is one hell of a trip, both hilarious and wise, to one degree or another.

-Danny, Bucket Reviews (10.17.2004)

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