MOVIE REVIEW [PREVIEW]: "Mascots"

Television and movie universes seem to be just about everywhere these days. To the illustrious list of Marvel's Cinematic Universe, DC's Extended Universe, Fox's sort-of-X-Men Cinematic Universe, and the Universal Dark Universe, which absolutely no one asked for, we can now add the Christopher Guestverse. Or the Corky St. Clairverse, as it were, since Guest's newest film, the Netflix original Mascots, brings back this amusing character of Guest's from 1996's Waiting For Guffman, creating something of a stab at continuity. But more on that later.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4936176/mediaviewer/rm2764964096
Mascots is perhaps a strange idea for one of Guest's now-classic mockumentaries, if only because it feels like a weird middle ground between the two films of his that I have seen: Waiting For Guffman and 2000's Best in Show. Waiting For Guffman worked because it was dedicated to being absolutely specific and recognizable when it came to its loving-but-mocking approach to small-town community theater, going small in scope to accurately get into this insular subculture. Conversely, Best in Show worked because it provided delightful fictionalized context to, and behind-the-scenes intrigue, of a Westminster-esque dog competition, which is a widely watched television event. But Mascots seems to be picking an odd target in this regard, because mascot competitions aren't exactly ever made into television specials with captive audiences, while the jokes in the film itself don't have the same ring of truth that similar tropes in Waiting For Guffman did. It's easy to imagine someone watching Westminster and wondering what exactly goes on in the minds of the dog owners who participate in these kinds of shows, but there isn't really the same widespread gathering of sports mascots to drive this same sort of inquiry--wondering what a mascot is thinking is pretty much a one-on-one affair between the mascot and the spectator...

You can read the rest of this review in Paste Magazine.

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