William Goss June 12, 2011
Judy Moody has gazed into the abyss, my friends, and she sees hope for her future and ours.
The fearless leader has a plan. We will no longer endure summers filled with boredom; rather, we will endure with a regimented points system, motivating us toward achieving fun. How does one accumulate Thrill Points? Moodists must set aside all doubts and subject themselves to the challenges of riding roller coasters and walking tightropes and surfing waves and generally bucking against social complacency.
But more importantly, why does one accumulate Thrill Points? How else would the great Judy fend off the onset of sans-school doldrums? She is no longer the redheaded stepchild of unfulfilled expectations, armed to the teeth with trusty acronyms, glitter glue, and newfound standards of accomplishment. Fun must be won, earned, dominated — it is only through competition that we Moodists may demonstrate our true worth to the fearless leader and her spastic cause, lest we forget her cries of freedom once her hand was no longer glued to a table in a ploy by the Establishment to prevent her from spreading the truth about the very real threat of summer bummerness.
Her struggle against societal norms has been captured well in the timeless cultural document fittingly titled Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer. The animated asides, on-screen graphics, and constant exaggeration of sounds are necessary to fully convey the hectic lifestyle of — and breathless progress made by — our fearless leader, and just as director John Schultz took his production design cues from the bravura likes of Bo Welch’s The Cat in the Hat, one would be wise to model their own domicile after the Moody home when not already modeling one’s behavior on Judy’s. (Even Schultz’ occasional use of Dutch angles accurately reflects the cock-eyed optimism that is her perpetual mindset.)
So find toads and let them pee upon your palms! Invite compatriots to spew blue puke in your face! Chase down Bigfoot! Hunt down Urkel! Sign up for Heather Graham’s “I Ate Something Gross” club! Plan your very own poop picnic! Allow antic aunts to get behind the wheel and drive down children in neighboring yards with little regard for human life! Defy convention, and disrespect your closest pals! Huff glitter glue and snort Pixy Stix! Don’t just be sick, be sick-awesome! And when all else fails, dance.
Lead your own thrilladelic life, my friends! Have your own super-cool, double-sweet goals! Dream the dream of Judy! Obey her every whim! It is only then that we may know the value of summer, and the purest definition of all-American glory.
Categories: ReviewsTags: Heather graham, Judy moody and the not bummer summer, Movie review