American Wedding (2003)

A Franchise Matures

Wow. There are few things more interesting than the evolutionary forces of the market that push and pull something to ensure survival. I’m a strong believer in how market forces shape film, even our most exotic art films. This isn’t art, of course, not in the usual sense. But it is a great example of how, in three simple instalments, the form has adapted.

The forces are shaped by TeeVee. Back in the 30s and 40s, the serialization model in films was driven by radio. So the features, the core of the meme, were imaginative. Its just the way radio works. Radio is a matter of words inventing vision in the mind, so is closer to literature. TeeVee is a matter of packetizing images and ideally branding them. Its a different approach to narrative, and a different set of market shapers.

So the things that survive, do so because of the success of the selfishly branded image.

This particular instance is interesting because it has adapted and survived. Indeed, the series may last a very long time. Its interesting because it focuses entirely on different dimensions of teen sex. Because the story here comes from an offhand joke in the original about “band camp,” and the unusual use of a flute. That joke was expanded in the second one to involve a trumpet — and to actually trigger story elements.

Here, the joke has become entirely personalized and has transcended the implement. Oh, and its of interest because the recipient of the flute’s attention was a nerdy surreptitiously sexy redhead in the first one. Here, she’s the star, with a highly engineered personality, someone that other characters interact with.

Posted in 2007

Ted’s Evaluation — 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.


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