Mac and Me is one of those movies you just watch in awe and bewilderment. Not because of a visual spectacle being presented or unique storytelling techniques, no. It's because of how wildly insane and senseless it can be, while also being incredibly entertaining.If you have ever watched Steven Spielberg's 1982 classic film E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, you've basically already watched Mac and Me. It's a cheap and blatant rip off of the E.T., except with product placement cranked up to 100. Seriously, it's almost as if you are watching a 90-minute commercial for Coca-Cola and McDonald's.
The plot follows a young boy named Eric who moves to a new city with his family. Eventually, he ends up befriending Mac (Mysterious Alien Creature) through a series of events that are too much to even begin to describe. As it turns out, Mac has been separated from his family, and it's up to Eric and company to reunite everyone. All of this is happening with the government hot on their trail, trying to retrieve Mac for research purposes. Sounds familiar, right?
It's not even the similarities between it and E.T. that bother me the most, no. It's the excessive product placement and reliance on it that really gets to me. Coca-Cola is a vital ingredient to the plot of this movie. Without it, you wouldn't have Mac and Me. I don't want to spoil the movie at all because trust me, it deserves your 100% undivided attention.
I could write an entire article on the design of the alien creatures in this movie alone. You would think that the crew would try to make a cute and cuddly creature that would appeal to kids and marketers alike. Nope. They look downright scary. Not to mention the way that Mac and his family communicate over distance throughout the movie. It's something out of a horror movie, I swear to god.
The worst part of this movie is how professionally made it is. It has decent cinematography, passable acting, and a dreamy sci-fi soundtrack to go along with it. The film had a decent budget and crew to go along with it. You could tell that there were talented people that worked on this film, they were just being bogged down by, well, the film itself.
It's also insane to me how they even got funding for this. They approached McDonald's and pitched the idea of an E.T. rip-off, and it worked. They even got Coca-Cola and Skittles in as well. I would love to have been a fly on the wall in that room just to see how exactly everything went down.
Mac and Me also has nearly every 80's film trope in it: a montage to a cheesy pop song, love interest between two teenagers, kids outsmarting adults, unnecessarily large explosions, the list could go on and on. In some aspects, this is a quintessential look into how some movies were produced back then.
Despite all of its flaws, it's not a bad movie to watch at all. In fact, I'd go as far as to say it's the best worst movie ever made. Like, I don't see something of this caliber ever being made again. It's hard to imagine anything as ridiculous as this to be funded and produced again, right?
Anyways, I've got good news for you. Some gracious soul has uploaded the entire film onto YouTube, completely free and available to watch anytime. So please, gather friends and loved ones, grab a Coke, and enjoy one of the best worst movies of all time, Mac and Me.