One blogger’s personal bridge to nowhere

Existentialism through parted ass cheeks

James Parker’s Atlantic piece gives a great synthesis of what I had previously assumed to be simply Jim Carrey’s ambition — the move from ridiculous (physical) comedies like Ace Ventura to the aspiring award-winner, seeking to convince the world that he can do more than ventriloquize out of his ass cheeks.  But really, while there are multiple Carreys, there’s essentially only one Carrey — and his various metamorphoses actually just refract the world’s view of humanity (that, at least, seems to be Parker’s ambitious argument).

Then there’s earnest Carrey, low-voltage Carrey, Carrey the Oscar chaser, dutifully dialing it down for The Majestic and muting himself in The Truman Show. This Carrey excites a peculiar anxiety: you sit there with your scalp prickling, waiting for him to go off. Which he never does. But Carrey can only play it straight when the rest of the world is crooked—laughing at him, deceiving him, or (as in The Majestic) falsely accusing him. More than all the leaping about, it’s this strange, unnerving subversion or emptying-out of regular-guyness that makes Carrey the representative jester of our time.

Ventrioloquizing his ass cheeks turns out to be quintessential — and existential — Carrey; at least, I think that’s the implication when a movie review ends by suggesting that Carrey portray the pathos of Beckett’s Waiting for Godot “out of his ass.”


December 10, 2008 - Posted by | Movies | ,

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