Define “Blart”

“Sometimes there’s a [kind] of blockbuster whose grosses can’t be predicted by even the wisest of box-office sages,” writes Vulture‘s Lane Brown.

“For example, who could possibly have anticipated Paul Blart: Mall Cop‘s explosive $39 million opening weekend? Certainly not Sony Pictures, who admitted in yesterday’s LA Times that they barely thought it’d make half that. And now, as their movie Segways speedily toward $100 million, it’s finally helped give a catchy name to all films with outsize profits and similarly awfulsome premises: Blarts.

“How does one identify a Blart? Sometimes they feature the Rock as an NFL star who unexpectedly becomes the father of an 8-year old and must, for some reason, perform ballet (The Game Plan, $90 million domestic). Others star Martin Lawrence and William H. Macy as members of the same biker gang (Wild Hogs, $168 million). Did your movie earn $94 million with a cast that included George Lopez as the voice of a dog (Beverly Hills Chihuahua), or $217 million, thanks to a trailer that featured computer-generated rodents eating their own poo (Alvin and the Chipmunks)? Congratulations — you Blarted!

“The only things Blarts usually share are family-friendliness, an inexplicably enormous gross, and a screenplay that seems like it was probably submitted on a dare (also, it helps if a participating actor publicly refers to it as a ‘piece of shit.’”

If I may be so bold, a “Blart” is a film that has hit the jackpot with the lower end of the American middle-class gene pool. Simple.

71 thoughts on “Define “Blart”

  1. moveable hype on said:

    “Blart”…when a Greek girl had a big fat wedding.

  2. I think I’d call Big Fat Greek…a sleeper that turned into a phenomenon. I’m not saying it was good, but it crossed over into our cultural conscious and became a touchstone for people. People still remember that film. The “Blarts” mentioned above seem utterly forgettable outside of their surprise box office success. Ten years from now we will (hopefully) have to strain our brains to recall “that movie about the mall cop?”.

  3. If I may be so bold, a “Blart” is a film that has hit the jackpot with the lower end of the American middle-class gene pool. Simple.

    Ah, knocking the supposed dimwits of the middle and lower classes. Can always count on Wells for my healthy, daily dose of bigotry. God bless you, Sir!!!

  4. Actually, you gotta be impressed that a movie with a fat and middle-aged actor is a success again, given the shallowness of today’s audiences.

  5. Its pretty obvious why this drek made money. The Adam Sandler, lowest common demonator audience that doesnt want to think. They just want to watch fat guys who fart for 90 minutes.

  6. renorambler, you completely missed the point. Staying power or quality has nothing to do with what’s being talked about here.

  7. So I’m assuming nobody SAW the movie, right? Cuz, the fact that it’s actually pretty good for it’s genre and budget might have something to do with it. MIGHT. It’s no classic, but the main character is genuinely sympathetic – you WANT to see him beat these guys down, which gets surprisingly brutal – and it stays admirably far away from pop-culture referencing and smug “whatever”-ism for it’s humor in favor of oldschool slapstick.

    The fact that what amounts to a one-joke sketch expanded into a PG feature works at all is further testament to Kevin James very real comic chops, though since he already stole two whole movies out from under Will Smith and Adam Sandler one wonders if that really needed further proving. He has the makings of a John Candy (or Goodman – LOVE to see him work under the Coen boys come to think of it…) save that he hasn’t yet hit on an Only The Lonely/Planes Trains level script yet.

  8. I saw Paul Blart and it’s a serious piece of shit. Kevin James is the next John Candy if John Candy’s defining roles were in CANADIAN BACON or WAGON’S EAST. Hey watch the fat guy eat, now watch him fall down — it’s hilarious when the obese have physical mishaps!! Check it out he’s riding a friggin segway, that is crazy. Although I have to say I’m looking forward to the inevitable spin off where Rob Schneider goes undercover as a female mall security guard in PAULINA BLART: THE SEARCH FOR MORE MONEY…

  9. I take back what I said about Ryan Reynolds. Based on the success of Mall Cop, I now believe The Proposal will blart and break Reynolds as a star.

  10. It’s a good-natured PG movie that apparently doesn’t rely on scatological humor or below-the-belt humor. And it’s going up against a bevy of serious-minded Oscar hopefuls, horror flicks, and bios of dead gangsta rappers. The weather is cold, and families want to go to movies.

    Where’s the mystery here?

  11. Ok, so we have a guy who was on a hit show for 6 or 7 years. Both movies he was in, co staring with bigger stars, were huge hits. So why wouldn’t this movie be a hit. Times are hard people want to laugh. People should never be surprised that a comedy does well.

  12. No, Burma. Reread please. I think you missed the point. I was making the distinction between a “sleeper hit” and a “blart.” I never said either had to be high quality.

  13. This winter reminds me more and more of

    winter 2007….when movie critics beat their

    brains out in frustration while a parade of

    atrocities racked up huge numbers…”Wild Hogs”,

    “Ghost Rider”, “Norbit”…..and it’s deja vu all over again…with astounding weekend numbers for

    “Taken”….no hollywood truth was ever spoken

    better than by Wiiliam Goldman when he said…

    “Nobody knows anything.”

    But here is one certainty, like death and taxes……brace yourselves for Blart II

  14. “How can I hate Kevin James for I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry and yet love him tenderly when abruptly he takes Jayma Mays in his arms in the last reel of Paul Blart: Mall Cop?”

    – Jean Luc Godard

  15. Why so surprised? This is the same nation that reveres a talentless, slutty, blonde whore who’s famous for being rich and slutty *cough Paris cough* and is obsessed with the Shittybowl every year.

    Of course this shit piece of crap movie is a success.

  16. “and is obsessed with the Shittybowl every year. ”

    Like other people obsess over the Oscars? The Superbowl is ten times the event of the Oscars. With the Superbowl, only the deserving get there and win.

  17. Why so surprised? This is the same nation that reveres a talentless, slutty, blonde whore who’s famous for being rich and slutty *cough Paris cough* and is obsessed with the Shittybowl every year.

    Of course this shit piece of crap movie is a success.

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