WARNING: This review
contains bad language. If you are offended by bad
language, don't read this review. Also, if you are
offended by bad language, don't see Team America.
The Masked Reviewer hopes that you are not offended by bad language,
because Team America is great, but to adequately prepare you, the
Masked Reviewer had to use bad language in this review, so don't
go reading it and then get all mad because you saw a couple of
four-letter words. You have been warned.
It might be the
greatest movie ever made.
Well, maybe not. But if you're a fan of "Southpark," you're
almost definitely going to think that Team America kicks ass.
First, a warning. Team America is not a kid's movie. You
know how people brought kids to see the Southpark movie, even
though it was rated R? Well, don't make the mistake of bringing
kids to Team America. It really is rated R. Really R.
Very R. Even though the characters are all puppets, there's
extremely foul language. In the interest of preparing you for the
kind of foul fucking language you'll hear in this movie, the Masked
Reviewer will use some in this review. Fuck yeah.
Are you offended? Then don't see the movie. Think you can
handle it? Then read on.
Not only is there bad language, there are elements of the film that
are likely to upset various races, religions, and sexual orientations.
There's (puppet) nudity. There's insults against beloved American
actors and actresses. Oh yeah, there's violence, too.
The film has been hyped in some fucking circles as being politically
driven. Not so. Team America may remind you of the TV
show "Thunderbirds", but in its essence, the movie is a perfect parody
of just about every film that Michael Bay ever directed. It makes
fun of every action blockbuster in cinematic style, writing, effects,
and even acting (though the Team America cast is less
wooden than the actors in, say, Pearl Harbor).
Trey Parker and Matt Stone have always tried to push the envelope
with their work on "Southpark". If you're unfamiliar with the
show, and you go in to Team America not knowing what to expect,
you're either in for the treat of your life, or your worst nightmare.
It's bizarre, often crude, occasionally offensive (to some) humor that
will either have you leaving the theater or rolling in the aisles.
It isn't for kids. It's shocking, and somehow Trey Parker and Matt
Stone manage to keep in shocking even for loyal fans. You think
you've seen it all, and then something just a bit more disgusting or
offensive happens. If you can't sit back and enjoy it, find
yourself another movie, cocksucker.
The Masked Reviewer again apologizes for the use of bad language in
this review. But, it's being done as a public service. If
you're offended, don't go see Team America. This is
nothing. This is tame. You could give this to your
grandmother to read. If you are the type of person who has a line,
Trey Parker and Matt Stone will cross it. If you are a person that
thinks that comedy does not have a line that can be crossed, you'll very
well love Team America. It's entertaining all the way
through, for every frame (and how many films can claim that?).
When you're not laughing, you'll be marveling at the visuals.
The visuals, in fact, are unlike anything you've seen before.
They decided to skip computer graphics almost entirely. Everything
is done with puppets and scale models. If nothing else, you can't
help but be amazed at how much work it must have been to shoot any one
of the scenes. There are huge models of cities and landmarks, and
everything blends perfectly visually.
The cinematography was by Bill Pope who did all the Matrix
films as well as Spider-Man 2, and it shows. It's awesome.
It doesn't look like a bunch of marionettes; it looks like a god damned
honest to goodness action movie. It's breathtaking. The
effects, while always looking campy, look great, and they're funny and
spectacular at the same time.
The puppets by the legendary Chiodo brothers (Killer Klowns from
Outer Space among many others) are fabulous as well. They have
fully articulated facial expressions, and there are a number of laughs
from the visuals alone.
The music is on par with the soundtrack from Southpark: Bigger,
Longer, Uncut. There are a number of brilliant songs (almost
all of which contain "fuck" at some point) that are catchy and funny.
The only possible let down in the score is the re-sourcing of one "Southpark"
tune that appeared in the episode where Stan went to Aspen and won a
Not only are the songs hilarious (from an uplifting country-western
pro-America tune, to the hard hitting Team America theme) but the
orchestral score is brilliant. It's exactly what you'd get
in...for example...a Michael Bay movie. It's wonderful. It
isn't a cheap knock-off; this is blockbuster stuff, baby.
It's sad that a lot of people won't get the humor of this film,
because they'll be too disturbed or offended to enjoy it. Sure,
it's disgusting. Sure, it's politically incorrect. But it's
hilarious. It is certainly not everyone's cup of tea, but if you
aren't easily offended, you will laugh. Even people who are easily
offended are certain to laugh out loud (before they storm out of the
theater in disgust). It is the funniest film to hit the screen in
If you do go, make sure you stay all the way through the credits.
Why? The last song in the end titles doesn't appear elsewhere in
the movie, and it's screamingly funny.
Expectation from the Title: A wholesome, patriotic movie about
a group that pulls together to save the world...which is more or less
the case (except for the first part).
Mother's Rule (Always Say Something Good About Everything):
Well, let's see, the Lisa puppet has nice hair...
The Pros: Funny funny funny. Insanely detailed
old-school sets, awesome puppetry, breathtaking visuals, great
soundtrack and score.
The Cons: Some people will undoubtedly be offended.
Others will be grossed out. It's not a kid's movie, but it's not
supposed to be a kid's movie. If you get grossed out or offended,
go see something else and stick your disapproval somewhere else.
Sean Penn, Alec Baldwin (even Alex Baldwin), Michael
Moore (not Roger Moore, but I bet he gets that a lot), Tim Robbins, and
Kim Jong Il, and any number of other people will be really upset by this
movie. Don't blame the Masked Reviewer.