An interesting film that ultimately looks at the power of language.
I think this movie could have benefited if it was a tad shorter.
It is pretty amazing the power, double meanings, and ultimate ferocity that the word F*ck has. This is the subject of this film by Steve Anderson which talks to people like Pat Boone, porn star Tera Patrick, the late Hunter S. Thompson, Bill Maher, Ron Jeremy, etc.. It is truly amazing the ways the word can be used, when it can be used, how it has been used, and while this film gives us a historical perspective, it really shows us the power that this four letter word has. In addition to all this, it is pretty interesting when you realize that throughout time this word has not lost any of it's sting. Sure, there are people that are comfortable using it, but that is usually because of the uncomfortable effect it elicits in others. This film mixes a great deal of talking head footage with cartoons and archival footage.
Overall, F*ck is pretty darn funny. While it's hard to give it a blanket endorsement either way, I think that people renting or buying a movie with this word in the title (heck, it's the name of the movie here!), certainly know what they are getting themselves into.
Extended Interviews, Bonus Interviews, Deleted Scenes and an Extended Scene
I have grouped all of these together because if you read the titles they are all essentially the same thing. The biggest difference comes with the Extended Scene which is in the form of a Bill Plympton cartoon. The rest of the supplemental features in these various sections have the subjects talking about their favorite curse words, as well as giving us other musings on the word that makes up this film's title. As true treat to people, there is a sequence where Tera Patrick does some of her porn "Dirty Talk." It is a testament to the power this woman has that she is fully clothed, and she makes this moment of verbal pornography rise to the level of art.
The reason for this being an option on this DVD is anyone's guess but it is sure to provide laughs to many. Basically, you can set up the Curse Counter so that it counts all the times the word "F*ck" is used in this movie. While you need to watch the whole movie to get the gist of this, it isn't intrusive and I would suggest putting it on even if you have never seen F*ck before.
Director Steve Anderson begins this commentary track by calling the movie a "wild ride." He then informs us that he's performing this track as the film was currently being released theatrically. Then he talks about the history of the project, how he came up with the idea, and then he comments on how he got the subjects to be involved. What makes this entertaining is that Anderson isn't preachy in how he talks about all this stuff. He discusses how the "F-word" has been used in history and then explains things like the pains of getting footage clearances.
16:9 Anamorphic Full Frame Presentation. This movie is cut very tightly and at 90 minutes it is packed with footage. From cartoons, to archival pieces, and even talking head footage this movie pulls out all the stops in getting it's point across. In fact, with certain comedians that he couldn't get, director Steve Anderson supplements live footage of those performers in concert. Shot on video, the full frame Aspect Ratio might bother some, but for many I don't think that's a deal breaker at all.
Dolby Stereo. The audio on here is pretty solid. On some of the supplemental features the audio seemed to get a little distorted, but in the actual movie everything sounds and feels correctly leveled. With all the footage that has been put together in this movie, mixing all different kinds of footage shot at various points in history, it is pretty impressive that the mix is as strong and coherent as it is. The audio never dipped or had any hits that I noticed in my viewing.
An illustration from Bill Plympton (and the same picture that was used when this movie was released) is on display on this front cover. A bald character stands with his hand over his mouth and the F-word spelled out across his face. The back cover serves up critic's quotes, a description of what this movie is about, a DVD/Technical specs list, some small pictures from the movie and a cast list. Everything about this cover presents the subject matter in a funny way.
What most amazed me about this film is the fact that director Steve Anderson was able to find out so much information about this word. Getting people to talk about it is a no brainer, mainly because the people he has chosen all seem quite smart. It is the background that this word has that really sets it apart from all the others. People use terms like "sh*t," or "b*tch" but none of them appear to have the teeth that "F*ck" does. I liken it to using the N-word. It is there, it shouldn't be used (while I certainly believe that "F*ck" should), and people seem to only use it when they have reached a point where rational language has failed them.
I am painting with broad strokes here and I also have acknowledged F*ck's numerous meanings, so the term also has many times and places. However, the thing that F*ck makes perfectly clear is that if you really want to make a point, if you totally want there to be no gray area about how you feel about something, there are few better words that will do it as simply and easily as this one will.
Fuck was released November 10, 2006.