Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Downfall of America--Empire Strikes Back beats the Godfather Part II

This fall, as America launches itself into a contentious, divisive presidential election, we'll see a low, ugly side of our once great nation. Facts will be irrelevant, slogans will be copied from the KKK, and Americans will be swathed in an unprecedented amount of vitriol and anger. Then we will hear from Wolf Blitzer at CNN (because as we all know CNN is always first to call a story) around 11pm the first Tuesday in November once the West Coast voting polls close, who will lead this country for the next four years. Yada yada yada. We here at The Whole 42 minutes have been following a much more important contest: Grantland's Sequetology Bracket.

The task is simple: what is the best sequel ever? They wrote roughly 100,000 words on what defines a sequel and the older writers showed just how old they are by mentioning Jason and Freddie and Mike Myers (the scary guy) and all that crap that no one under 25 has ever seen. Anyways, on its face, anyone with eyes can see that there is only one fucking choice: The Godfather Part II. Chuck Klosterman, ethicist, kind-hearted soul, and smartest guy on the site, said this when he introduced the contest: "The Godfather: Part II is (arguably) the greatest American film ever made. It's so much better than every other movie on this list that it sort of seems idiotic to place it up against the likes of Hellboy II. But still — let's see what happens." There were murmurs that Dark Knight could beat it out with a younger generation, but thankfully people aren't that stupid.

Never mind, Empire Strikes Back leads Godfather Part II by more than 1,000 votes on Facebook.

You broke my heart Fredo (and America)

The fucking never fucking, mother basement living, mouth breathing morons have come out in droves to troll the Internet and cause the official downfall of America. That's right, the Empire Strikes Back, the movie that launched Mark Hamill's career, is going to beat out Godfather Part II, the greatest American movie ever. Now don't get me wrong, I love Star Wars but Jesus Christ is this some kind of test from God to see how mad I can get?

Here's a sample argument from a Star Wars geek defending Empire: Dee Williams, carbonite, magic cloud planets, fileting a giant animal and sleeping in it, father-son, the Force. Is this a joke? Star Wars is for kids. It's for family movie nights. It's for hungover Sunday afternoons on Spike before football has started. The "acting" in it is atrocious, the dialogue is pathetic, and the action scenes were technologically advanced for 1980, but that was 32 years ago. News flash to everyone who has seen all three movies: Empire is just a long set-up for Return of the Jedi. It cannot stand alone by itself. It's cemented as the middle of a trilogy.

Boo do be boop, look it's the last movie I'll ever be in!

On the other hand, the Godfather II, by itself, if there were no Godfather or Godfather Part III, would still be one of the greatest movies of all time. It features arguably the two greatest male actors of the past forty years, Diane Keaton, and Robert Duvall. I am beyond embarrassed that I'm even writing this I should not have to defend the merits of Godfather Part II. I've never been this disappointed in America. And for people who haven't seen Godfather Part II, people who say that it's too long, or too slow, or they don't like movies, I have a simple message: FUCK YOU!!!!! And for your parents, you did a horrible job and you should be ashamed. The Godfather movies are the immigrant dream, the quintessential rags to riches story mixed with corrupting power, violence, and Al Pacino. Watching them is why movies are made. It isn't formulaic, it doesn't resort to gimmicks. It's a perfect movie.

Grantland may not have meant to do so, but they caused the downfall of America. We are now a generation with attention spans too short to appreciate the Godfather, too lazy to vote if we have, and as a result, the nerds have won. Star Wars beating the Godfather is the great tragedy of the 21st century. RIP American Exceptionalism.

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