Can't get a ticket to The Hulk? Try The Brute. Movies give all kinds of different pleasures to all different kinds of people. But there's no substitute for the special dirty pleasure of class-card playing melodramas; this is a pleasure we usually deny ourselves. Our critical establishment, from wattle-shaking newspaper dinos down to acne-pocked bloggers, are very careful to detect a film's inhumanity to fictional evil landlords, conniving bosses and cruel millionaires.

Being a cartoon character, The Simpson's C. Montgomery Burns gets a pass. Burns is reputedly based on a real-life Hollywood type, but he has some other real-life predecessors. (Standard Oil's John D. Rockefeller is one; he put a lot of people out of business, lived to be enormously old, and ... this is so Burns ... survived in his last years off the breast-milk of a hired wet nurse.)

categories Features, Cinematical