(originally from July 28, 2007)
"A role in the Simpson's? I'll leave that to the Red Hot Chilli Peppers. It's a funny show but I wouldn't want to market myself in that direction."
- Billie Joe Armstrong, Kerrang! Magazine 1995
This post really has nothing to do with music, other than the Green Day cameo in the movie, but I wanted to vent.
Simply put The Simpsons Movie is a two hour film that would have worked better as a two part episode, though even then it would still be forgettable. I sense the screenplay most likely started as an episode, and got stretched out and out. I don't want to go to the movie theater to see an episode of a television show. When South Park was turned into a movie, it had an entirely different flow from the episodes, it was a spectacle, it was something new. It introduced whole new elements, made it a musical, made it grandiose.
In the Simpsons case, so many elements of the movie just felt tacked on for time purposes. The Green Day cameo was entirely pointless, a whole subplot about them moving to Alaska, and worst of all Lisa's relationship with some Irish kid. This Lisa subplot probably takes up less than ten minutes of total time, so why even include it? Lets face it, this was just a tack-on.
"The screen was too small. The floor was sticky. The romantic subplot felt tacked-on."- Grandpa Simpson, Season 2
You'd think the people who came up with that great line about one of the worst movie cliches would want to avoid it. Apparently not, because since that episode aired way back in 1991, The Simpsons have become so much of the status quo that they wouldn't dare do anything edgy or original. The only real surprise was seeing Bart's dick, which was more awkward than edgy. I'd like to see something out of the ordinary other than a second of a yellow prick. Fuck with what we expect! Kill off Grandpa! Make a plot explaining the Simpsons continuity! Anything but the same old shit formula The Simpsons have been spoon feeding us for seasons.
But they just stick with the same formula, the same formula that has ruined the Simpsons for the past bunch of seasons. You know the formula: Homer does something stupid. Marge leaves him. Homer wins back his family. And the cheesiness ensues. We've seen this so many times on the tv show, why do it again in the movie? In short this movie was made for one thing, to create money, but in short that's the reason The Simpsons are still on the air. If the producers wanted to retain an artistic credibility the show would have been cancelled years ago. The Simpsons have become like The Rolling Stones. People watch it, get spoon fed the same crap they've been getting for years, force themselves to like it, and reassure themselves that "its still got it".
Oh and as for the Green Day cover of the theme song it's okay, but like everything in this movie, has been done before. Sonic Youth did a much more interesting version of the song in a season 7 episode.