(Americatown opens at the reRun Gastropub on Friday, January 7, 2010, for a one-week run. It is joined by Lightning Salad Moving Picture for the opening weekend. Visit the film’s official website to learn more.)
When it comes to the increasingly popular and influential brand of sketch-stick comedy that borders on the experimental and avante-garde, I confess to being completely ignorant. It’s a gap I’m not especially proud of, but I also can’t seem to find the time to play catch up on all those shows that I’m always hearing so much about: The Mighty Boosh, Flight of the Conchords, The IT Crowd, The Whitest Kids U’Know, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, (feel free to insert ten more titles here). Even lumping those shows together makes me feel insecure, because maybe they belong to vastly different comedy subsets and I don’t even realize it? Kind of like if you were to ask me to explain the intricately specific delineations between sub-genres of techno? Sorry. It all sounds like atmospheric drones and thumps and blips to me.
Having said that, The Superkiiids!!! have entered my life to fill my gaping comedy void. With their first two feature-length efforts, Lightning Salad Moving Picture and now Americatown, I can safely say that I’ve found my favorite new zany surrealist comedians in the team of writer/director Kenneth Price and writer/performers Cory Howard and Jonathan Guggenheim. Americatown is a stream-of-consciousness tour through our country in the guise of an alternate country named… yeah, that. Howard and Guggenheim have a boundless creativity and charm that spills out in every line of dialogue and every situation that their loopy characters find themselves in, and their supporting cast—even the clearly cobbled together participants they interviewed on their actual cross-country shoot—rise to the challenge as well. But the best part of Americatown might not even be the movie itself, which succeeds as a dazzling display of no-budget virtuosity. It’s the hysterical closing credits, in which the endless scroll of character names must be paused and chewed on for a while to be fully appreciated (Mamet Rollerscooter, Beastie Hancock, Errol Scrabble, Chickfila Lohan, just to name a few).
And now, let’s go to the videotape. If, like me, you think this is clip is very funny, then you should visit Americatown when and if you get the chance.