New Travel Wisconsin commercial is directed by David Zucker, kind of lame
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Since sifting through dull newspapers, hyperbolic blogs, and overflowing RSS feeds for meaningful news can be an arduous process, News Net catches and compiles both the amusing and the significant reports that were overlooked over the weekend. Here are some things to think about as the workweek begins.
• A big to-do was made last November when it was announced that David Zucker would direct a commercial for state tourism organization Travel Wisconsin. Zucker, a Wisconsin native and one of the masterminds behind such stone-cold classics as Airplane! and The Naked Gun, was soon welcomed with open arms and breathless press releases, and even appeared with the lovable Gov. Scott Walker at a much-hyped news conference. Surely the man responsible for The Kentucky Fried Movie and Top Secret! (and, er, BASEketball) could come up with a winter tourism campaign more effective and hilarious than a picture of a fucking mitten.
Sadly, the final commercial—which was released online over the weekend and will begin airing in Milwaukee Wednesday—is pretty lame. In it, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra performs “Winter Wonderland” on stage at the Riverside Theater, with fake snow falling from the rafters. Then, in a development that apparently illustrates our state’s totally unique penchant for “fun,” a snowball fight breaks out. That’s it. Catholic High School Girls In Trouble this is not.
The Wisconsin Department of Tourism is of course pleased as punch with the spot, and seems enamored with the cutting-edge idea of not including a previously used slogan with the campaign. (Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett: “It is a differentiator, not having [a] slogan.” Whoa!) As for Zucker, the ad represents a harmless and well-intentioned miss. Hell, even his mildly reprehensible, anti-Democrat spot from 2006 has more spunk and inspiration:
• Slightly better than Zucker’s wacky snowball ad is State Farm’s newest spot, featuring Packers nose tackle B.J. Raji. In it, Raji performs, well, “The Raji,” much to the chagrin of budding thespian Aaron Rodgers.
• The UWM Union Theater announced its spring lineup late last week. Some highlights include Dogtooth director Yorgos Lanthimos’ ALPs (Feb. 17-19); a restored print of Wong Kar-wai’s Fallen Angels (March 31-April 1); and Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi’s This Is Not A Film (April 26). Tap Milwaukee has more information.
• Local video game historian and co-founder of the Midwest Gaming Classic Marty Goldberg will co-author an upcoming book on the history of Atari, says Tap Milwaukee. The tentatively-titled Silicon Hot Tub: Atari Inc. How Innovative Leisure Created The Video Game Industry, And How Excess Almost Destroyed It, is scheduled for release in June, just in time for Atari’s 40th anniversary.
• Red Letter Media released a new episode of its terrific Half In The Bag series over the weekend. The video serves as a recap of the films of 2011, as well as a spot-on (and funny, natch) take on David Fincher’s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.
• OnMilwaukee.com’s JC Poppe talked to Group Of The Altos’ Daniel Spack about the band’s new album, and the challenges of playing in such a large group. Look for our review of Altos when the group announces an official release show.
• What are you doing this week? This is what you’re doing this week: checking out Ex Fabula’s “Faking It” Tuesday at the Bay View Brew Haus; getting in on the ground floor at the Polica show Thursday at the Cactus Club; and returning to Cactus the following night for the Midnight Reruns’ album release show. There. It’s just that easy.
• And the award for Best Local Headline Of The Weekend goes to “Some things change; others, not so much” from, you guessed it, OnMilwaukee.com. Congrats!