American Dreamz (2006)

Muslims that speak primarily English and not their home land’s language, a Muslim young man who sings and dances and isn’t killed for it, a glorified karaoke show that’s staged, scripted, and twisted, a dumb president who can barely walk on his own, and a vice president that pretty much coaches the president’s appearances and speeches. “American Dreamz” is not only incredibly stupid, but it pretty much states the obvious from minute one. Weitz and crew almost create a “Satire for Dummies” film, featuring gags and social commentary that are neither funny, nor edgy, and tread over the same old crap we’ve seen in various other television shows, and films time and time again.

Reality television is garbage, and the country is run by a moron. Well, what a big fat shocker, too bad we’ve been told that over and over for years now. “American Dreamz” is a painfully unfunny attempt to jab at American sensationalism, and exploitation with zero intelligence, and rather awful performances, all in a film that’s just twenty minutes too long. In a rather elaborate narrative, “American Dreamz” is a multi-character all star film about a smash reality show that’s prompted the attention of the president to regain his good publicity, and a young man who plans to bomb the entire show through entering and winning the contest. In the process, the young man is exploited for being Muslim and basically takes the world by storm. Weitz’s film doesn’t just suffer from being a mind numbing affair, and it suffers for also managing to be a really excruciating attempt to be edgy, touch on a few hot spots, without ever actually making the audience feel uncomfortable.

If that isn’t bad enough, much of the script is so utterly hideous that it’s just shocking that it was written with the consideration that it could be funny. And most times than not it fails at doing what it sets out to. Beyond that, most of this satire and tale of the consuming fame seeking American comes off flat, particularly in Mandy Moore who is just completely unconvincing as this obnoxious piranha seeking fame especially when she’s already played it to better effect in “Saved!” There’s also Hugh Grant who once plays the callous jack ass as he did in “About a Boy,” along with Chris Klein who pretty much plays the big oafish lump as he did in “Election,” and every other film he’s ever been in. There’s also the truly weak spoof on President Bush played by Dennis Quaid who you can tell is doing his best to spoof Bush, but looks like he’s doing a poor impression of Jack Nicholson. “American Dreamz” is a film that will become timely in a matter of a few short years once the “American Idol” crazed has died down and America’s short attention span has been diverted to something equally vacuous.