Internet television plays into the shortened attention spans of the online generation, or so hopes the film makers in Attention Span Media, a new media, short form production company. Call them formal pioneers or cultural exploiters, their raison d’etre is certainly a reflection of the current media atmosphere.
It is fitting then, that one of their programs, Sock Tube (they also produce the collegiate farce, Dorm Life) uses sock puppets to reenact recent Hollywood releases, many of them Oscar nominees/winners. It’s Potter Puppet Pals expanded to satirize the silver screen.
They satirize boring or confusing sequences in films like There Will Be Blood and No Country for Old Men . Their reenactment of Michael Clayton contains no recognizable references to the movie, but instead focuses on George Clooney‘s massive celebrity and the fact that Michael Clayton sounds kinda like Michael Keaton. Brilliant!
Despite their dedication to the ADD inflicted viewer, some of the clips go on for five minutes or more, occasionally losing my interest. It is difficult to tell how much of what they do is rehearsed or improvised, but it is often their digressions that are most humorous. The hands and minds inside and behind Sock Tube also manage to make clever comments on the Hollywood system.
Their version of Will Farrell’s Semi Pro is their shortest and most scathing, but also the most accurate in it’s criticism. Their Step Up 2 was my favorite, perhaps because it takes a less turgid and more brazen tone. Juno is the weakest, as they are not able to get past the film’s corniness, but the imitation of Diablo Cody‘s overwrought dialog is inspired. Their latest, Indiana Jones, may be there best, which makes sense given the absurdity and odd richness of that movie.
I’m not sure that Sock Tube achieves the vision of Attention Span (which is, presumably, to always hold my attention), but it’s a concept well realized nonetheless.