Arts Desk

Arts Roundup: ‘Hug a Luftmensch’ Edition

hot-tub-time-machine

Morning, folks!

I’m not exactly sure what sort of necromantic Russian energy drinks Ann Hornaday and the rest of the critical community were slugging when they persuaded skeptics like me to shell out $11 for Hot Tub Time Machine with the promise of high-concept camp. The movie tries to cash in on the whole bromance thing, but jettisons the canniness, genuine emotion, and soft-handed moralizing Judd Apatow used to restore dignity to films that also contain projectile vomiting. It’s about friendship, ostensibly, but the closest it gets to moralizing is an obnoxious, alogical denoument in which we learn that having loads of ill-gotten money makes you have healthier relationships. Hot Tub Time Machine isn’t high-concept, it’s no-concept. Don’t see it.

Speaking of conspicuously silly projects that will surely be labeled “high-concept” by someone, Neko Case’s new Cartoon Network show, “Cheyenne Cinnamon and the Fantabulous Unicorn of Sugar Town Candy Fudge,” premiered early this morning on Adult Swim (stream here). Case, playing a vapid blonde pop diva, provides a pregnant teen with dubious council, often via song. At least there the moral is easy to spot.

Speaking of high-brow treatises on low art, Rochelle Gurstein devotes this month’s TNR column to defending the family of academic disciplines responsible for the navel-gazing luftmenschen who write them.

Speaking of navel-gazing luftmenschen, it’s hard not to read this WaPo piece as a scold. Meanwhile, here are a few artists whom the D.C. government does not consider burdensome.

The purpose of the poet, of course, is to describe our burdens. Here are some poems that describe yours.

Hug a luftmensch today. Bye!

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