A sincere review of Tim and Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie would be pointless. The duo’s absurd sense of humor—resistant to any traditional notion of plot yet pre-potty-trained, a parody of second-rate consumerism and the perennial dick joke—is singular in its unrelenting satire of humor itself combined with the most revolting sounds and sights imaginable. The soundtrack to the show sounds like someone eating an egg salad sandwich over elevator music. For every diehard fan, there are at least two people who despise Tim and/or Eric. The only major difference between the sketch comedy TV show and this movie is the actual idea of plot, albeit a loose one. The story shows Tim and Eric as suntanned, diamond-studded Hollywood big shots whose first movie is a huge failure. Due to a bad contract, they flee town so as not to have to repay the film’s producers the one billion dollars they were allotted to make the film. When they see Will Ferrell advertise a job in his mall as a surefire way to earn a quick billion, they leave at once to clear their name and rebuild the Swallow Valley mall. Antics ensue.
Fans will like this movie, and h8rz gonna h8, so rather than review the film, I will recommend who should see it based on each potential viewer’s favorite movie.
If your favorite movie is...
This one’s for you—gruesome violence (John C. Reilly, not in his usual T&E role as Dr. Steve Brule but as a diseased, shanty-dwelling mall enthusiast “Taquito,” gets shot more than three times), your mom won’t like it (“Russell was wonderful but I just hate to imagine my child fighting in a silly game like that!”), and it features not one but two of our generation’s leading men who have been snubbed by the Academy Awards after winning Best Actor the previous year (please fact check).
THE BLIND SIDE
You’re going to LOVE it! A heavy dose of shit (plot, writing, and acting in The Blind Side; actual feces in Tim and Eric) and a ridiculous premise. While Tim and Eric squander a billion dollars on a spiritual coach, the pony-tailed Zach Galifianakis whom they pay a half million dollars per week, and a three minute movie starring a Johnny Depp lookalike, Sandra Bullock pretends to be a respectable actress.
I know what you’re going to ask. Is it a good date movie? Why yes, it is! Throw an arm around your significant other as Tim Heidecker gets pegged by a middle-aged woman who sells celebrity balloon lookalikes. Sneak a peck on the cheek as Eric Wareheim kisses Taquito as he coughs up blood and raw meat. And, Ryan Gosling!
SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK
Any fan of Charlie Kaufman will find endless interest in Tim and Eric’s metaphysical meditation on reality, its commercial embodiment, and the multiplicity of self-perspective. A few times during the film, the action stops, and a segment—“Understanding Your Movie”— begins, in which anonymous actors explain how Tim and Eric demonstrate proper business etiquette in the film. Through this interruption of a linear yet absurd plot, the duo seems to ask: how is the already-divided self pitted against its embodiments in different spheres and media? How does the viewer interpret the dissolving of the fifth-wall through the mutual gaze of author and viewer? Are the absurd and the real dialectic elements to be synthesized into art, or does the combination of the two result in the annihilation of both? What?
HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY
That’s your favorite movie? Really? You’re definitely weird enough to enjoy Tim and Eric.
MARCH OF THE PENGUINS
You know what you’ll be doing Saturday night, penguin lover. What’s cuter than a penguin with its young? How about Tim Heidecker using the son he stole from the mall’s janitor as a human shield in a Tarantino-esque showdown at the end of the movie? Or Steven Spielberg’s adorable cameo? Spoiler alert: he’s wearing a baseball cap. Bring your kids, but fair warning—they might just love you too much by the end of it.
Now that you’ve got the facts, it’s time to make an educated decision. Should I see Tim and Eric’s Billion Dollar Movie right now, or should I wait until Parents’ Weekend?
GREG NISSAN B’15 is a diseased, shanty-dwelling mall enthusiast.