The holiday season is traditionally that time of year when Hollywood rolls out its most unabashedly sentimental doses of awards-season corn pone, and this year is clearly no exception. Leading the pack is Stephen Daldry’s forthcoming adaptation of Jonathan Safran Foer’s bestseller Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Both trailers that have appeared thus far offer convincing evidence that this is guaranteed to be among the most insufferable examples of the worst kind of prestige picture, the novel’s already cloying imagery clearly getting that extra push in the direction of pure schmaltz.
But even the worst films can yield nuggets of comedic gold, and thanks to House Next Door editor Keith Uhlich, Max von Sydow’s voluntarily mute character has become the basis of one of the funniest memes in recent memory. Using three frame grabs from the trailer, His Royal Swedishness has been transformed into a kind of online Magic Eight-ball that answers whatever question one submits. I was naturally just tickled pink to see my own question being answered by ol’ Maxie, although my favorite ones involve an infamous line from Shark Attack 3 and Von Sydow’s response to a request from Garry Marshall. What do you think, Max von Sydow?