Making a permanent impression since 1994
November 23, 2005
-- Movie review --
Family Guy movie delivers the laughs
By Stefan Koski
If you’re looking for a movie with good wholesome family
fun, you are looking in the wrong place. Family Guy Presents Stewie Griffin:
The Untold Story may very well be the raunchiest, funniest, and most
politically incorrect animated 88 minutes in movie history.
The movie is essentially three episodes of Family Guy
that have been intertwined with the same storyline. The main plot is about
toddler Stewie going on a quest to find his personal identity and his real
father. In the meantime, parents Peter and Lois try to get their other two kids,
Meg and Chris, to get involved in the dating scene, and Peter gets a job doing a
segment for the local news show called, “Do You Know What Grinds My Gears?”
Among the topics that grind his gears? Lindsay Lohan, priest-and-a-rabbi jokes,
and people from the eighteenth century.
Seth MacFarlane, creator of the Fox animated series Family
Guy, created the Family Guy movie as a way of thanking the
show’s fans for getting it back on the air after spending two years on hiatus.
It’s filled with the kind of humor MacFarlane has always wanted to do on the
series but couldn’t because of Fox censorship. Many of the jokes and quips
littered throughout the film wouldn’t stand a prayer of getting past the Federal
The entire movie is filled with sexual innuendos. Meg gets a sex-change and becomes “Ron.” An Asian news correspondent humps the leg of David Bowie. Stewie has a near-death experience where he goes to Hell and Steve Allen attempts to seduce him. In the first 10 minutes of the film, Lois comments that she got pregnant with her first child after qualifying for the Olympics and couldn’t go.
“Now I’m pro-choice,” she adds.
Other jokes are less risqué, but equally disturbing on one
level or another: a man named “Douchebag” gets elected President, a spoof on
the classic Samuel Adams commercials has one restaurant patron asking for the
alcoholic beverage at 9:30 in the morning to “get the taste of weed and hooker
spit” out of his mouth, and Stewie gets horribly intoxicated and drives a car
straight through the wall of the bar he just left.
MacFarlane doesn’t shy away from the borderline
anti-Semitic either; Peter comments about going to Las Vegas to see “Jew-Man
Group,” complete with a cut-away to a group of blue-faced rabbis performing on
stage. And, perhaps most disturbing of all, during a scene where Walt Disney is
unfrozen in the future, he asks the scientist present, “Are the Jews gone
yet?” When they scientist answers, “No,” Disney angrily retorts, “Put me
back in!” and slams the door of the cryogenic chamber shut.
While all are inarguably hilarious, they’re not the kind
of material that would be suitable anyone younger than the teenage crowd, or
anyone who can’t stomach the atrociously politically incorrect gags.
Besides the sordid humor, though, the movie shines in other
ways – particularly in the music, composed by Ron Jones.
All the pieces, from the opening sequence to the ending crescendo, are
splendidly arranged, demonstrating the capacity that Family Guy has to be
tasteful in other aspects, which perhaps explains a little of why the show has
garnered Emmys with past episodes.
The DVD is fairly light on extras, even though it does
include a full audio commentary by Seth MacFarlane and some of his stellar
writers and voice actors. The real value is in the movie itself.
Newcomers might be intimidated by the movie’s bizarre sense of humor and the lewd wisecracks, especially if they are still getting accustomed to the other cartoonish extremities (i.e., “What? The dog can talk? The baby too?”). But fans of the series and anyone who can stomach the shameless shenanigans will delight in every minute of it.
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