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TV's Joel McHale riffing with Rifftrax on Red Dawn

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jun 27th 2009 3:03PM
Joel McHale, star of The Soup and CommunityActor, comedian and classically trained suit wearer Joel McHale has taken his talent for riffing to the next level.

The star of The Soup and the upcoming NBC sitcom Community has joined forces with Michael J. Nelson's Rifftrax.com to provide a running comedy commentary for the perennial craptastic 80s classic Red Dawn. Nelson announced the guest commentary on the Rifftrax site and his Twitter blog earlier this week.

Rifftrax, for those who may not be familiar with the site and are therefore in no way cool, is the comedy website that provides downloadable MP3s of funny movie commentaries featuring the voices and talents of the minds behind Mystery Science Theater 3000 including Nelson, Bill Corbett and Kevin Murphy. It is the only reason I still own all three Matrix films, that and the fact that my desk is missing part of a leg.

Neither McHale or Nelson have spilled many details as to why they chose to riff on Red Dawn, other than the fact that it sucks harder than Larry King trying to obtain the last ounce of life from an orphan baby. Seriously, if you have not seen it, keep it that way. Your eyes will thank you if they could talk. And if they can't, they will eventually find a way to learn so they can personally thank you.

I'm just curious to know the connection between Nelson's special guest and the film, other than the possibilities for picking the film apart are more promising than Joel Hodgson at a Roger Corman film festival.

Past celebrity riffs have tried to fit the film to the guest such as legendary lounge lizard Richard Cheese's guest riff on Ocean's Eleven and comedy musician "Weird Al" Yankovic's assault on the original Jurassic Park. I would have pegged McHale to take on Paris Hilton's ear-stopping performance in The Hottie and the Nottie or Lindsey Lohan's last unwatchable dreck (take your pick). Then again, I would have to own either of these films in order to enjoy Nelson and McHale's commentary, so I should just count my blessings and clear the rest of this week's schedule to make the time to count that high.

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You'd be surprised: there's a lot of Wolverines love in the world. Of course there's much to be made fun of in Red Dawn-- it was an 80s movie, that can be said of any 80s movie-- but it had a great cast (Swayze, Sheen, Jennifer Grey, Powers Boothe, Harry Dean Stanton), a great score (Basil Poledouris), and it was genuine, which is to say it was truly made with love, rather than just a simple money grab as with many movies these days. I'm not saying it's a great movie, but it's a fun movie and that counts for a lot.

Usually I find Joel McHale to be amusing but never truly funny, but I'll certainly give it a listen.

June 27 2009 at 6:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Why so much Red Dawn hate, Danny Gallagher? It's written and directed by John Milius (Apocalypse Now) and it's a really fun 80s movie. I see it as a monument to our cold war paranoia and it makes me nostalgic for Russians as uncomplicated movie villains.

Maybe you should stick to reality TV? Heidi and Spencer are probably more your speed.

June 27 2009 at 3:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to john's comment
Danny Gallagher

I don't know. I guess that's because when I watch a movie, I usually have my eyes open and my ear plugs out. I hope McHale and company tear this movie a new one.

June 27 2009 at 3:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
BC McKinney

You know that it's being remade with "post-9/11-sensibilities" in mind? Apparently the Chinese are going to invade. I don't know why they'd need to, unless they want real estate in exchange for all the money we borrowed to invade Iraq, bail out Wall St., and buy their laptop computers and big-screen TVs. North Korea makes more sense as a threat.

June 27 2009 at 5:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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