1979 / 94 min. / PG
Director: Ivan Reitman
Cast: Bill Murray, Harvey Atkin, Kate Lynch

Canada Day Marathon: MEATBALLS

For that big national birthday everybody’s been talking about, The Royal set itself the challenge of assembling an all-day All-Canadian Canada Day program that didn’t feel like an act of national duty to sit through. And boy did we: a hard rockin’, high-flying, meatball-flinging Canada Day movie program for the rest of us.

For the longest time, the title of this rude cannonball splash of a movie – along with the similarly sloppy Porky’s – was shorthand for everything that had gone wrong with Canadian movies. Now we may look back and wonder what had gone wrong with Canadian cultural thinking. Meatballs, directed by Ivan Reitman and starring an utterly uncontainable Bill Murray, is a gas, pure and simple. The plot, like it matters, is about the hipster-clown re-education of a quiet and lonely kid (Chris Makepeace) at a camp on the shores of Ontario cottage country. Yes it’s rude, blunt and not exactly sensitive, but who’d love it as much if it were?

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