Saturday, November 7, 2015
THE ADVENTURES OF JOE DIRT (2001)
Directed By: Dennie Gordon
Written By: David Spade & Fred Wolf
Cinematography By: John R. Leonetti
Editor: Peck Prior
Cast: David Spade, Brittany Daniel, Adam Beach, Dennis Miller, Jamie Pressley, Kid Rock, Erik Per Sullivan, Christopher Walken, John Farley, Caroline Aaron, Fred Ward, Liz Torres, Chris Wylde, Bree Turner, Natalia Cigliuti, Kevin Farley, Rance Howard, Fred Stoller, Steven Schirripa, Richard Riehle, Blake Clark, Mitzi Martin
*Please note that some trivia and facts have been republished from imdb among other sources In this review
Joe Dirt is a janitor with a mullet hairdo, acid-washed jeans and a dream to find the parents that he lost at the Grand Canyon when he was a belligerent, trailer park-raised eight-year-old. Now, blasting Van Halen in his jacked-up economy car, the irrepressibly optimistic Joe hits the road alone in search of his folks. As his wandering, misguided search takes him from one hilarious misadventure to another, Joe finds his way to Los Angeles, where a shock-jock brings Joe on his radio show to insult him. But as Joe's life story unfolds, jeers turn to cheers, and an entire captivated city tunes in to hear the adventures of Joe Dirt.
I will admit I have a soft spot for this film. Usually most David spade films as I find him funny most of the time. He has a sarcastic humor of a know it all, but from the perspective of someone who has been stuck being uncool, nerdy and goofy. So this is either his defense or his way of expression. Usually the joke is either on his character or the character is to slow or silly to realize that he is he joke. He seems to be that smart ass yet deluded and loyal friend with a sharp wit. Always there to offer commentary and try to show you a good time. Some might see his sarcasm as smarmy. Where as it seems like a facade at times to not face reality or their own sadness. That is where most comedy comes from pain, sadness and fear.
Where his every man quality comes into play is how usually quickly or willingly his character will either sacrifice or easily go against his normal instincts just to be cool or considered to be part of the in crowd. Still learning a lesson and having a happy ending.
This film while no cinematic triumph is cute and contained. It's like a sketch character who doesn't really have Schtick for a short sketch but works more as a feature length character. Explaining his history and what drives his passions. Here David Spade really comes alive as it seems more of a character he is comfortable with and closer to his sensibilities.
The film is like fast food. It's not great but it is filling even if you know it is bad for you. It hits the proper spots and is delicious on the moment. Though you won't be surprised after to find yourself still hungering for something deeper and that sticks.
The formula might work for him here. Just as it has worked previously for his Saturday Night Live cast mate Adam Sandler. In playing a more lovable loser who might not realize he is one. Yet stays true to himself and finds success, adventure and eventually true love because of it.
The names Joe Dirt reads off from the people that were on the tour bus are the same names that Ben Stein goes through for attendance in FERRIS BUELLER’S DAY OFF
This film is filled with off the wall casting that gives the audience welcome surprises now and then. That are welcome introductions and re-introductions to some actors who have been away from the screen for awhile.
I have to say this is probably the best David spade film that he has starred in. Which aren't too many. This one was so successful that they have made a sequel. Though I haven't had the heart to actually view. As this one seems to be one of those films that came along at the right time and place. To really hit it out of the park.
All in all, it still feels like a Saturday Night Live movie. Which I am sure it reminds you of immediately because of the outrageousness of the character. Who seems born more of a writer's idea then an actual person. Also as disposable as the movie seems at times. Like it is shiny plastic in a showroom, rather than a polished solid. Which gives it that not quite steady feel.
Then again it is a silly comedy meant to entertain. Not raise the bar of cinematic expression.
Roseanne Barr and Gary Busey were originally cast as Joe Dirt's parents. After shooting the scene director Dennie Gordon decided that Roseanne's star-power was too distracting, and opted to re-shoot the scene with Caroline Aaron and Fred Ward. Which might explain why they feel so out of place especially in tone of their delivery.
A nice rental