That’s Not Funny
A Dead Serious Documentary About Comedy
It was Thomas Jefferson who said that ridicule is the only weapon that can be used against unintelligible propositions.
There are quite a few people around the globe that refuse to watch movies that aren’t comedies. It only makes sense, entertainment is supposed to make you laugh, to make you feel good. Although this self-limitation might sound ridiculous to many, the truth is that an element of comedy in any show, movie, or program adds some form of relief or escape.
Comedy is everywhere and almost in everything. We use it to break tension, point out hypocrisy, and even to talk about some serious topics like politics. People turn to comedy to help them wind down after a long day or to help them start out a new day on a positive note. In fact, most of us choose our friends based on how hard they can make us laugh. All this is so because laughing feels good.
In recent years people have started to become increasingly more offended by the things comedians are saying on stage or the jokes that are showing up on TV shows.
Mike Celestino, the producer and director of this documentary shares candidly his opinion about people who get offended and why comedy is so important to him.
This film tries to expose what will be the future of comedy by first exploring its past all the way back into Ancient Greece where political satire had a direct influence on public opinion. It takes a look at modern comedy that has its origins in Vaudeville, where it shared the stage with magicians, musicians, monologists, and acrobats.
Most people can recall names like Charlie Chaplin, George Burns, Abbott and Costello and The Three Stooges. All these, and many others, got their start in Vaudeville. But as the shows became more popular, theatre owners started enforcing decency codes in order to seem more polite.
From the use of the slapstick to laughing at other people’s pain, this documentary analyzes what it is that makes people laugh and how censorship has enforced strict rules throughout time that have actually turned out to be an infringement on the rights of others.
Comedy is an art and like history, art is a means for benefitting from human experience. Mike Celestino is convinced that art is where bad ideas belong and it’s much better for a person to place his or her bad ideas into art, than to act them out in real life. That way every person gets to decide whether or not to agree, laugh at, or ignore those bad ideas in true freedom of speech. Watch this thought provoking film now.