- The Washington Times - Friday, April 20, 2001

"Freddy Got Fingered" may not be the most stupefying and repulsive movie farce ever made (or yet to be made), but the immediate impact of its frenzied, wretched facetiousness obliterates all impressions of previous worst cases.
Not so long ago, "Beavis and Butt-head" and "South Park" seemed to set the bar lower than any rivals possibly could surpass. But never underestimate the willingness of contemporary humorists to tunnel well beneath low-minded norms when daring to be tasteless beyond the call of practical opportunism or peer-group esteem.
The new low rider is Tom Green, who created a niche for himself on MTV. Last summer, he passed a road test of sorts in the chase comedy "Road Trip."
Promptly entrusted with a triple-threat promotion as star, co-writer and novice feature director, he has demonstrated the exquisite judgment of patrons at 20th Century Fox by pretending (I think) to be terminally gross and slovenly.
Compelled to take a prolonged, unamused look at this pretender to such reigning madcaps as Jim Carrey, Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy and the Farrelly brothers, I deduce a poor mans update of Chris Elliott.
Demoted to second-banana roles after the downright wistful offense of "Cabin Boy" in 1994, Mr. Elliott anticipated Mr. Greens willingness to traffic in potentially nauseating stunts while employed as David Lettermans sidekick on the original "Late Night."
Curiously, the plot of "Freddy" seems to poach rabidly on Mr. Elliotts short-lived sitcom, "Get a Life," predicated on a young misfit who threatened to remain the despair of his parents by clinging to the nest.
Mr. Greens gibbering, crazed variant, Gord Brody, makes a fleeting exit as "Freddy" begins, driving from his hometown of Portland, Ore., to Hollywood, where he hopes to beg a career as a cartoonist or animator.
A sarcastic producer played by Anthony Michael Hall, who possesses a verbal dexterity that actually seems to harmonize with Mr. Greens style of babbling, giving it a certain clarity and stability while they share dialogue, throws cold water on Gords aspirations.
The plot is destined to double back and contrive a ludicrous excuse for Mr. Hall to shower a $1 million deal on the lunatic from Portland, but the initial setback propels Gord home again, where he wages domestic war with a bellowing, grotesque dad played by Rip Torn.
Mr. Green flashes a one-track mind on the Hollywood trip. One example of many repellent sexual sight gags: A part-time job in Hollywood finds him doing lewd pantomime with a giant sausage while working on a sandwich assembly line.
Sex is rivaled by violence back home. Gord contributes to the accidental injuries suffered by a best friend and a neighbors child. Gord meets the girl for him at a hospital: Marisa Couglin as Betty, a paraplegic who dreams of rocketry, likes to be caned across her paralyzed shins and keeps reminding Gord that shes sexually available.
While visiting his friend in Bettys hospital, Gord also seizes an opportunity to play baby doctor, twirling around a newborn by the umbilical cord in celebration. Later, he saves the cord, a souvenir taped to his own belly.
Mr. Green has a weakness for shtick that fizzles; for example, reiteration of the words "crossed fingers" in one interlude and a tirade with slices of cheese in another.
He seems to cross invisible fingers while inventing chronically cheesy, defective gags.
The title alludes to Gords kid brother, age 25, who is seized by moronic social workers when Gord accuses Dad of being a child molester. The ultimate slapstick payback for bull-elephant dad involves another grossly lewd sight gag.
In "Freddy," you confront something far more treacherous than a slippery slope of tasteless humor and imbecilic aggression. The slope is so contaminated that it needs to be bulldozed and isolated as a toxic dump.
Dont expect rehabilitation within the next millennium. Not that Mr. Green needs any encouragement from hostile spectators; his sense of humor seems to depend on relentless revulsion and derangement.

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