"CHEERFUL CONTENT" TO HELP "FEEL BETTER THIS WEEKEND"
Paste today posted its "Official List of Cheerful Content," which consists of staff "suggestions for how to feel better this weekend." Staff writer Jason Rhode explains, "Paste friend Sean Doyle had a suggestion: during this highly fraught week, while Paste will certainly be publishing plenty of serious features, it might be helpful if we put together a list of light-hearted/cheerful/delightful media or ideas that we turn to in these moments; really, anything that keeps us sane during the next several days. I asked Paste staffers to compile a staggering list of heart-dazzling brilliance, so all may taste the rainbow. In this winter of discontent, we bring you the winners of this content."
Rhode himself begins the list with his choice of Brian De Palma's The Untouchables:
When I consider media which brings me good cheer, one movie immediately comes to mind. In any moment, for any reason, for any question, there is a single answer, and that is Brian DePalma’s The Untouchables. You know that movie you love? Well, all the movies you love secretly adore this flick, and have been writing fan letters to this piece of pure American kino. Oh, the greybeards and Philip Roth will say that this is not a cheerful movie. You know what makes me cheerful? Knowing when they go to sleep and wake up they are wrong, wrong, wrong.
The Untouchables is one of most encouraging movies ever made. I’ll spare you a recitation of the plot, since we have all watched at least five minutes of TBS in our lives and thereby absorbed DePalma by means of osmosis. What can account for the cultural cachet of this epic tale of brotherhood and bloodspill?
You know all of those empires which have fallen? Looks like they weren’t Untouchable. There are Oscar-winning movies that cover tweens learning violin, kids discovering that dinosaurs were just like us, and how the yam farmer is the noblest of God’s creatures … but they don’t have Kevin Costner pushing a Prohibition baddie off a roof and into a car. Does your beloved Jennifer Lawrence vehicle feature Sean Connery chasing an assassin out of his house in his suit-vest, only to be shot himself? No? Oh, how disappointing that must be for you.
Does your movie happen to be the most heartwarming bro-picture of all time? In the other movies, does an accountant discover in the moment of trial that he can go full truffle-shuffle and wreck shop on Capone’s illegal hooch empire with a gun in his hand, and an even bigger gun in his chest—his heart? Yes, the heart is a gun. The Untouchables teaches this lesson, and so many more. DeNiro’s Capone isn’t even acting; it’s as if the memes from all his Scorsese movies (“To-day! To-day! To-day!”) plugged into an feedbacking amp the size of the world. This movie does not chew the scenery, it devours the backdrop for the fuel to rise above the concept of scenery. That’s the Chicago Way.