This could be the greatest puppet show ever put to film. South Park
’s Trey Parker and Matt Stone take aim at everybody, and I mean everybody, with this unbelievably violent and profane satire of American action movies and world politics. Kim Jong-il (voice of Parker) is distributing WMDs to eager terrorists worldwide, and Team America, a band of feisty puppets with very bad aim, is on the case. The film’s best joke would be Team America’s disregard for historic landmarks (their weaponry often misses the mark and causes mass carnage and destruction). When stunned civilian marionettes survey the damage with wide eyes and mouth agape, it’s as funny as movies get. Puppets die bloody deaths and have major sex (film almost got an NC-17 rating), and many a celebrity is skewered. Alec Baldwin, Sean Penn and especially Michael Moore are probably not going to have a good time watching this. (Penn has already expressed public anger with Stone and Parker, so hooray for Stone and Parker!) Parker and Stone manage to sneak a few tunes in there as well, including Jong-il’s ode to isolation, “I’m Ronery.” This is just the sort of film that’s needed to take a bit of the edge off a tense political season. While it isn’t for everybody, puppets getting torn apart by sharks in a giant aquarium makes me happy.