I've made the mistake of thinking about this too much.
A master filmmaker working on a film based on what was considered the master subversive pop culture magazine. A whole lotta smart meets a whole lotta dumb and what comes out the other end is something that is funny at times and empty and pointless at other times.
Anytime not spent doing exactly what National Lampoon does best, which was take down the upper-middle class and people in power (a subject Lampoon writers knew well, being the white male descendents of those people), is spent appropriating culture, punching down, and being existentially obnoxious.
This film is surface-level Altman stylistically, but there feels like a disconnect between the goal of the…