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Beyond their offers of heavily discounted organic groceries or bicycles, the leading deal-of-the-day websites like to dabble in editorial content. (Actually, with Groupon, the term “editorial content” can lead to unfortunate, investor-scaring things like the CEO doing yoga in nothing but a pair of white briefs in front of a Christmas tree. Link is NSFW-ish.)
LivingSocial, the D.C.-based discounter, has a blog called, unsurprisingly, SocialStudies. The site offers up uncritical reviews of art exhibits (Free Tip: It’s the NGA, not the “Nat Gal”), Tuesday-morning quarterbacking fuck-yous to the Dallas Cowboys and their awful fans (Free Tip No. 2: It’s more fun to tell the Cowboys to fuck off after beating them), and oddball musical finds like this mashup of Notorious B.I.G.‘s “Mo Money Mo Problems” and Tom Petty‘s “Free Fallin'” by the Chicago DJ duo White Panda.
And then there are videos, such as a too-cute montage of suitably precious Washingtonians describing how they came to live here.
But this morning, SocialStudies rolled out something called “Washington, DC: The Movie.” Now, the trope of “[Insert Place Name Here]: The Movie” gives me a lot of pause to begin with. But an appreciation of “the District’s illustrious film career?” Heck, everyone loves compilations of movie scenes, right? Here’s the “trailer” for SocialStudies’ orgy of D.C. set scenes from 100 years of movies, complete with repurposed voiceovers by the late Don LaFontaine:
In a world where film appreciation is reduced to YouTube cut-and-paste jobs, the ones full of the most ham-handed, sappy, and manipulative scenes are the most painful. Forrest and Jenny embracing in the Reflecting Pool, Michael Douglas and Annette Benning waltzing across a White House ballroom, Elle Woods marching up the East Front of the Capitol, the brats from St. Elmo’s Fire relishing their country-club looks, Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson screaming at each other, some other piece of Aaron Sorkin-scripted drivel, Sen. Jefferson Smith’s job-killing filibuster—it’s all there. Actually, this video isn’t too far off from our list of the worst films ever made about Washington.
There are, at least, a few worthwhile cuts, including Peter Capaldi‘s vicious spin doctor Malcolm Tucker cursing up a storm in In The Loop and the destruction of the White House in Independence Day. (Fifteen years on, it’s still the gold standard for executive-mansion demolition.)
But that clip of the Washington Monument toppling onto a crowd of tourists in 1956’s Earth vs. the Flying Saucers? Too soon.