August 18, 2007

If you haven’t seen these before..

The Shining as a romantic comedy
Taxi Driver as a romantic comedy
Mary Poppins (my new favorite)
Martin Scorsese’s Sesame Streets

Almost all humor seems to work by way of juxtaposition. The first two mash-ups take serious films and pull them in a light-hearted direction. The latter two take children’s themes and push them into the dark.

Mixing the epic with the mundane is another favorite type of juxtaposition. The “former roommate” scene in Spaceballs, the “poo-poo undies” scene in Young Frankenstein and the wicked queen scene in Annie Hall all come to mind. Such contrast is also part of the attraction of revisionist lit like Wicked.

Speaking of the Wizard of Oz, I guess we could also call Dark Side of the Rainbow a “mash-up”. The most striking part is 4:01 in, where  Dorothy falls into the pig pen — but you can find that sort of moment eventually with any combination of random video and sound. There is doubtless confirmation bias at work here, as we see sometimes in etymology..


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