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Project X this Generation’s Risky Business? What a Shame

I wonder some times about the “adults” in Hollywood and whether or not they recognize the damage they are doing. MTV is the easy whipping boy for this argument. What once was an ultra fresh outlet for music fans to tune in to and check out the latest music videos from their favorite artists became a not-so-soft porn site for teenaged fetishes and fantasies. All under the adult supervision of network execs who saw a market for their low brow drivel.

The ratings system has failed parents. We all know how competitive the market is for snagging consumer’s discretionary spending moolah; how specific the demographic research is to aim a product at as wide an audience as possible. In other words, if something is PG-13, the Hollywood folks really want the 9-12 year olds to crave it. If something is rated R, they are banking on the fact that 13 on up will do what it takes to get their eyes on it.

So a film like Project X is really aimed at early teens. The whole forbidden fruit human nature reality. And when you look at a film like this through that prism, you wonder how these producers and “filmmakers” sleep at night. Don’t they have children?

I’m not going to bother with seeing this film. But, here is the Los Angeles Times review. For my readers outside of Cali, the L.A. Times is an extremely liberal newspaper.

Once upon a time there was an innocent little movie called Risky BusinessA high school boy (Tom Cruise) throws a party to end all parties to help his pal pay off a sleazy pimp named ‘Guido’ (Joe Pantoliano). Then he falls for ‘Guido’s’ main squeeze (Rebecca De Mornay), and the two consummate their relationship to Phil Collin’s “In the Air Tonight” on a subway. Raunchy premise? Sure. But at its core, Risky Business is an excellent coming of age story that has just enough sweet boy-meets-girl to make it almost romantic. This film even managed to give us an iconic film moment, Tom Cruise sliding into frame in his boxer shorts and air jamming to Bob Seger’s  “Old Time Rock N’ Roll.” 

Our kids get Project X. I wasn’t a big fan of Superbad or The Hangover, but my guess is Project X makes those two look like The Godfather I & II.

Again, not gonna see it. I’ve seen all I need to see in the seemingly endless media blitz. So here’s another review.

Of course our kids want to see Project X. They also want to eat ice cream all night, wear dirty underwear (the boys anyway), blow off school, and go to McDonald’s every day for lunch and Del Taco for dinner. Hey, sounds like a great premise for an MTV show.

Call it Parents Gone Wild.

4 thoughts on “Project X this Generation’s Risky Business? What a Shame

  1. Kudo’s Lars for your very insightful blog and message. As a older sister to 5 brothers and a sister during the “Risky Business” era and a Aunt to 16 Niece’s and Nephew’s now during MTV’s Project X era it pains me to see the shows ‘tweens and teens watch today compared to those my siblings, or I watched in the “60’s and “70 (Hogan’s Heros, The Monkees, Kung Fu etc.) I remember the most X-rated type shows I watched at the time were “Laugh-in”or maybe the “Love Boat”. I am not saying that we should turn back the clock to the “Leave it to Beaver” era, but there is something to be said about shows that provide a message, that are funny, have some type of character development and/or a drama. Not the mindless drivel that I seem to find on most MTV programs and other stations. I will give MTV some credit for their Teen Pregnency shows since they do not glamorize the issue…..however, I hope it does not give any teen the idea to get pregnent JUST to get on MTV.

    • So true, Terry. To think that ‘The Love Boat’ felt like adult fare is now pretty hysterical. But you are so right. The really frustrating thing about what is happening with so much of the tv and film product is that “children” ultimately respond to good storytelling just like any other demographic. So if it’s a chicken-egg argument, I contend that if the “adults” in charge checked themselves and stopped going for the cheap sex gags and gratuitous garbage and focused more on quality storylines, they wouldn’t lose their audience – AND SOCIETY WOULD BE THE WINNER. How’s that for some soap box clatter?

  2. ugh hearing the title of that movie only irritates me…and I liked Superbad! I’m also a huge fan of all the 90s teen movies which actually are Godlike in comparison to this 2012 rager of a film.

    great post :)!

    • Thanks, Sarah. Great to have you reading! I found some moments in Superbad, but a lot of the gags ran out of gas for me. What did you think of Scott Pilgrim Vs The World? For my money, much smarter and more inspired.

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