GOD BLESS AMERICA
KNOWN in the 1980s and '90s as a shouty stand-up comic, Bobcat Goldthwait has reinvented himself as an ''edgy'' independent writer-director, with four features to his name. The latest is this gory, unfunny satire that deserves a prize for the most strained provocation of the year.
God Bless America - Trailer
On a mission to rid society of its most repellent citizens, terminally ill Frank makes an unlikely accomplice in 16-year-old Roxy.
Frank (Joel Murray) is a divorced, middle-aged office drone who fantasises about shooting babies when not railing against the state of modern civilisation.
When he loses his job as a result of a trumped-up sexual harassment charge, he hits the road and starts gunning down reality TV stars and other symbols of cultural decline, assisted by a bloodthirsty teenager (Tara Lynne Barr).
This thin plot is little more than an excuse for tirades that Goldthwait might equally have delivered on stage. Frank sounds sometimes like Bill Hicks, sometimes like Bill O'Reilly, sometimes like one more internet blowhard confusing free-floating anger with a point of view.
Covering some of the same turf as Mike Judge's far more successful Idiocracy, the film becomes a scattershot attack on Goldthwait's pet peeves: cruel talent show judges, inane radio hosts, rabid Fox News pundits, over-indulgent parents, people who cut in line, people who take up more than one parking space, people who talk on mobiles at the movies … As Gilbert and Sullivan put it in the 19th century: they'd none of them be missed, they'd none of them be missed.