I'm a very liberal-minded person. I see nothing wrong with NC-17 movies, and oftentimes I look forward to them (for obvious reasons). I see nothing wrong with sex in movies (for obvious reasons), and I even like vulgar humor. Regardless, "A Dirty Shame" is one of the dumbest and most disturbing movies I've seen in a long time - and not in a good way.
Much of my hatred toward this movie, perhaps the reason that I could only watch two-thirds of it and even that required taping my eyes open, is that I can't stand Tracey Ullman. I don't find her particularly funny, but more importantly I find her icky. No, I find her downright disgusting at times. And watching her pick up a water bottle with her vagina does not interest me in the least. Yes, the movie does make fun of the fact that Ullman isn't exactly a hottie - as she runs around trying to get laid wherever she can, most people turn a rude eye on her. But even still, I wanted to puke at times, and this definitely isn't "Fear Factor."
On the other end of the spectrum, I really like Selma Blair. In fact, I find her really hot. But when she has boobs the size of Danny DeVito, something is lost. She's even repulsive to look at (of course, that's the point).
There are moments I liked, especially when Ullman's boss (and mother?) Big Ethel (Suzanne Shepherd) starts campaigning to remove any kind of indecency from the streets. It is here where the movie succeeds the most, as the movie makes fun of prudes (who "take back" the word "neuter" as a positive) who are disturbed by public displays of sexuality and homosexuality. Unfortunately, these scenes still miss the mark.
Like I said, I turned the movie off with half an hour to go. I couldn't stand it. I couldn't imagine watching Tracey Ullman for another twenty-five minutes. I couldn't imagine sitting in front of the television for any longer watching a comedy where I had only laughed once.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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