Like in his two other most recent films, God Bless America and World's Greatest Dad, Goldthwait seems preoccupied with our American tradition of worship. Joel Murray, in God Bless, is pushed to the edge by the lack of empathy in the grotesque America we have become (with a particular disdain for reality tv) causing him to go on his own nasty killing rampage to set things "right." In World's Greatest, Robin Williams tackles a disgust for a culture that deifies an asshole (this is just a loose description since I don't want to give it away- it really is a must see!). Hell, even the one with the lady who performs an "unspeakable" sex act really is just another take on what society is willing to see as acceptable: who is worthy of who's judgement. Willow Creek follows suit too as it unassumingly unpacks our belief systems of what we put our trust and faith into, in this case regarding a legendary American folk tale. If these loaded topics weren't enough, the thing that takes these films even further into the realm of cultural critique, that makes them more of just plain fleeting social satire, is the fact that they are films.
Goldthwait expertly uses funny (mixed with blood, terror, sex, fallacy- which sounds like a Red Hot Chili Peppers bootleg!) to remind us that no one really knows the demarcation of the fine line between right & wrong in the powerful church of media. Whether we are in the audience or behind the camera we all get to choose what we worship (/buy), how we behave, what media we are willing to believe, but, as Goldthwait seems to warn, we still need to question the sources, the broadcasted norms, and even our understanding of reality if we want to live in a world worth living in... If something must be believed in I might just join the Church of Goldthwait who is laughing through our bleak existence and asking us to laugh- and think- as well, but for now I will continue to watch his progressive, regressive cult films that remind me that there is no normal or truth in this crazy, media-driven world. And Bobcat? Keep it up you warbly-voiced demi-god! Willow Creek opening June 6th, 2014