[PAST EVENT] APIA Lecture | Comedy of Terrors: Strategic Offenses & Genre Tactics from the Global South

November 3, 2017
12pm - 1:30pm
Boswell Hall (formerly Morton Hall), Room 314
100 Ukrop Way
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
Access & Features
  • Free food
  • Open to the public

This talk examines three War on Terror comedies (?terror comedies?) from the Global South, all of which reference Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay (Jon Hurwitz and Hayden Schlossberg, 2008, United States, English), the Hollywood stoner-comedy precedent that most prominently inaugurated the genre of terror comedy. The three films ? Tere Bin Laden (Abhishek Sharma, 2010, India, Hindi), its sequel Tere Bin Laden: Dead or Alive (Abhishek Sharma, 2016, India, Hindi), and Road to Kabul (Brahim Chkiri, 2012, Morocco, Arabic) ? were box office hits in India and Morocco, respectively. The talk notes that their satirical prowess ensues from a cocktail of intertextual references to Hollywood cinema and the War on Terror, rendered from another side of the world ? backstage, as it were. The three films? comedic genre proclivities motivate a suspension of disbelief on the part of their audiences, who behold a set of implausibly zany characters and ludicrous storylines. The comedic intertexts are ultimately uncanny, as all three films render the War on Terror itself as a similarly bizarre, logic-defying genre of farce whose coherence depends entirely upon a suspension of disbelief on the part of its proponents.