The problem with making a satirical movie is that if you are at all subtle, the satire can be completely missed. And so it was with the 1997 film Starship Troopers. It was supposed to be a sendup of overly militaristic speculative fiction, but ended up way too close to what it was supposed to satirize. It fulfilled the audience’s desire for space aliens, sex, and carnage so well that they didn’t care what the aim was. Or was it a case that the movie was just so bad that director Paul Verhoeven came up with the excuse that it was a satire after the fact? In any case, you can see from this Honest Trailer how the audience might have been confused. Sure, the plot, characters, and themes were over-the-top, but so were many other steroid-laden movies of the time. The lesson to take from Starship Troopers is that if you are going to make a satire of a movie genre, do like Mel Brooks or the Zucker brothers and put some laughs into it.
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