Joe Dirt (2001)
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Well, 'Joe Dirt' has all that and more... but surprisingly it turned out to be not half bad.
Perhaps the day of the preview caught me in a particularly good mood, because this story of a white trash loser searching for his parents who left him for dead at the Grand Canyon when he was eight was relatively enjoyable entertainment.
The movie is told primarily in flashback; Joe stumbles into the studio of a radio disc jockey who coaxes out of him his incredible life story. In the process Joe Dirt becomes a media darling as his story of woe and misfortune is heard by an ever sympathetic audience.
This is another movie which relies on the gross and disgusting to get its laughs; dogs balls stuck to the front porch, being covered in excrement, blowing up atom bombs, consumed by alligators and much much more!
The movie works for the most part because of David Spade's affable loser Joe Dirt. He plays a character that is not a 100 miles away from his 'Just Shoot Me' personna - a loveable idiot. He goes through life having all these setbacks - but he still maintains his positive outlook.
The movie does lag a bit at the three quarters mark, but this is a minor quibble for a film that does what is sets out to with a lot more style than its lamentable cousins.
A whole lotta fun
6 out of 10.
Alongside Spade, Dennis Miller's cheap jabs at Dirt are absolutely priceless. His encounter with Miller sets up the whole premise for the movie, and the story begins. It takes you through different experiences Dirt has had from the time he lost his parents at the Grand Canyon all the way to the present.
Christopher Walker also makes a great appearance in the movie.
If you like movies such as Dodgeball, Old School, Tommy Boy, Black Sheep, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, etc... you will love this one. You have to judge this movie on what it is aimed to do, and that is tell a story of perseverance from Dirt, who gets picked on throughout life and keeps a good attitude, which is a welcomed message. And first and foremost, the movie is made to keep you smiling throughout, and for that it accomplished the goal to perfection. 10/10
Life's a garden, DIG IT!!!
It's a fast-moving hour-and-a-half. Some of the scenes are outrageous, such as a dog getting his - can I say this? - testicles stuck to the porch. Yes, it's good family fare!! Ha. Ha. No, really, this was a funny film and worth looking for if you need a laugh. I'm surprised there wasn't a sequel.
Even though, about a half-dozen of these movies come out a year, Joe Dirt stuck in my mind mostly because of its hilarious premise. Dennis Miller also shined as the Howard Stern-like DJ who rips into Joe every chance he gets through out the movie, with insuluts like, "you are exquisitely pathetic" and such.
All in all, I really enjoyed. Movies like this aren't aiming for Oscars. They're just to make you laugh, which this one does. Kid Rock also has a funny cameo as Robby, the bully who, like everyone else in the film, loves giving Joe a hard time.
About 2/3 into the film there is a scene in front of the abandoned home in Baton Rouge where Joe's parents used to live, and an old Cajun says to Joe in an almost unintelligble manner, "Home is where you think it is." He says it three times, and Joe never does understand it, but that in fact becomes the whole moral of the story. Joe eventually finds his parents, finds out they left him on purpose 25 years earlier in the Grand Canyon while he was playing in a garbage can, and returns to Brandy in Silvertown, the "postcard town" that Joe had discovered years earlier.
There is a lot in the way "Joe Dirt" is done that reminds me of "Forrest Gump." He is telling his story to a stranger, in this case Dennis Miller playing a radio talk show host. Joe, much like Forrest, bumbles from one seeming random place to another, and each time has a great influence on those he encounters. In each story there a beautiful girl he admires and secretly wants but doesn't think he is good enough.
The scene I found funniest was the night Joe met Brandy. He was stealing hubcaps to get money for food, when the dog on the porch started barking. As he started to run off, Joe noticed that the dog couldn't move. It's testicles had frozen to the porch. (They used a stretchy prostetic similar to Jeff Daniel's tongue frozen to the ski lift in Dumb and Dumber.) Brandy came out onto the porch, Joe says to get some warm water and a spatula ("No, not a fork, oooh..."), they free the dog, Joe and Brandy are fast friends.