Sam Strange’s Best Film Lessons of 2011

Legendary Hollywood producer Sam Strange recounts the most important lessons taught to us by films this year.

Cinema is a highly didactic format. Due to its popularity, people often only learn new things from watching films. Filmmakers not only have a responsibility to entertain, but to educate as well. Here are the ten most important lessons movies taught us in 2011.

Everyone Falls. A Hero Picks Himself Up: Transformers: Dark of the Moon

Transformers: Dark of the Moon really gets deep in examining what makes a hero. In this case, the subject is head Autobot, Optiumus Prime. During the Decepticons' siege of Chicago, Optimus finds himself wrapped up in some cables for almost the entire fight. While this comes very close to making him look like a foolish dumbshit, he eventually finds a way out of the trap, proving that heroes never quit. In the next Transformers film, Optimus will spend most of the movie stuck to the ground by a piece of gum while the Decepticons give him wedgies and taunt him about his alcoholic mother.

To Doubt Oneself is to be Human and Therefore Superior to Aliens: Green Lantern

In Green Lantern, Hal Jordan is granted the power of the Green Lantern's light due to his complete lack of fear. But when he puts on the ring and flies to planet OA for Green Lantern training, he quits five minutes later because he's afraid of failing. Everyone on OA assumes the ring that found him must have been faulty. But they don't realize that by being the first Human Green Lantern, Hal Jordan is the first scaredy-cat Green Lantern because, unlike other species, humans have the capacity for self-doubt. Furthermore, this abhorrent fear does not keep Hal from showing up on OA the day after he quit to order his bosses around, which is the definition of true balls. Green Lantern proves that real heroes have vulnerabilities too. Also, real heroes don't need to fuck around with training.

Love Does Not Bend to Social Boundaries: The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn: Part One

When Edward and Bella finally get married near the beginning of Breaking Dawn, it seems like all is lost for shirt-challenged werepig Jacob. But destiny has a way of rewarding those whose hearts remain true. The child produced by Edward and Bella's two sexual encounters, beautifully named Renesemesemese, falls directly out of her vagina and in to his heart. Jacob and the infant's wedding isn't as fancy as Edward and Bella's, but their honeymoon is nowhere near as hesitant.

Real Men Need Other Real Men: Fast Five

The ongoing romance between Paul Walker and Vin Diesel in the Fast Five series was fun, but it also ran its course. By the fifth film, there was simply nothing more Walker could offer Diesel as a man. So with Fast Five, it was time to give him someone new to wrestle with, someone who had lessons galore to teach. In many ways, The Rock is a magnified version of Vin Diesel. He's bigger, sweatier, more handsome and charismatic, and more confident. Finally, Vin Diesel has someone to look up to from below rather than look down upon from behind.

To Kill One's Enemy is Not Enough. One Must Also Degrade its Corpse: Drive Angry 3D

When Nicholas Cage finally gets the justice he escaped Hell for, his triumph is not complete until he drinks beer from his enemy's skull. It does not matter that a skull is filled with holes and the beer is all gone before it can touch his lips. All that matters is that he said he'd do it, and by God, he tried.

If You Are Evil, Your Poop Will be Evil Too: I Saw the Devil

The Good Devil in I Saw the Devil keeps control of the Bad Devil in I Saw the Devil thanks to a tracking device held in the Bad Devil's guts. When the Bad Devil realizes this, he takes an unhealthy amount of laxatives in an effort to poop it out. The resulting mess, which he digs through to ensure the device was fully ejected, proves that evil is biological as well as mental. Only a being of complete malice could produce a pile like that.

Victims of Rape Have Very Sexy Fantasies: Sucker Punch

Rape is all about power. Victims often find solace in a psychological fantasy land where they regain power over men by looking really sexy while they dance. But as they dance men stare at their boobies, which is an eye rape. So in their sexy dancer fantasy, they find solace in an even deeper psychological fantasy land where they look more sexy and kill robots, robotic Nazis, and baby dragons. You didn't know this before, but everyone knows it now.

Dinosaurs Had Emotions Too: Tree of Life

Humans often think of themselves as the only creatures with complex emotions, but that's simply not the case. It turns out that if a dying dinosaur looks extra pathetic, a predator will think about eating it and then decide to bypass it in favor of more capable prey. Careful study by Tree of Life's science department has ascertained that this is all thanks to God's being an awesome God.

The Future is Not Now. The Future was Ten Years Ago: Scream 4, Final Destination 5

The world has not changed as much as one might think in the last decade. Once cell phones were invented, that was pretty much the last step. Sure, there's social media like Twitter and Facebook, but kids don't really use it.

Journalism is Extremely Powerful: The Help

There is no force in this world greater than that of the written word, as The Help proves beyond a shadow of a doubt. Thanks to the power of journalism, a black maid in pre-civil rights Alabama can bake her own shit into a white employer's pie and not get lynched for it afterward. Just imagine what she could have gotten away with if Hunter S. Thompson were her advocate.


My Best Twelve Films of 2011

1. Harry Potter pt 7 pt 2

2. Transformers pt 3

3. Pirates of the Caribbean pt 4

4. Kung Fu Panda pt 2

5. Twilight pt 4 pt 1

6. The Fast and the Furious pt 5

7. The Hangover pt 2

8. The Smurfs

9. Cars pt 2

10. Rio

11. American Horror Story

12. Skyrim