Reel Quick: Neighbors


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Neighbors (2014)

neighbors-poster-seth-rogen-zac-efron

Starring: Seth Rogen, Rose Byrne, Zac Efron, Dave Franco

Directed by: Nicholas Stoller (Forgetting Sarah Marshall; Get Him to the Greek; The Five-Year Engagement)

Synopsis: Young parents run afoul of hard-partying college fraternity next door, who have turned their house into a house fit for animals, a “Beast Home,” if you will.

 

What works: 

  • Some scenes that are quite rib-tickling. The frat hall of fame flashback was probably my favorite scene in the picture.
  • Good cast. I actually don’t mind Seth Rogen, which is high praise these days. Rose Byrne is surprisingly well-suited for a comedy like this, plus she’s not hard to look at, and her breasts look wonderful even if they’re prosthetic and ready to explode with milk. Zac Efron was better than I thought he would be. And I think I actually like Dave Franco more than his brother.
  • The baby is probably the second- or third-cutest baby I’ve ever seen, and her cutaway shots are some of the funniest moments in the movie.

What doesn’t work: 

  • Ok. Weed. We get it, Rogen. 
  • Zac Efron’s character Teddy, the head of the frat, seems to devolve over the course of the movie from cool, semi-witty guy to a violent meathead, so he actually gets less interesting as the movie goes along. There’s actually a scene 3/4ths of the way through the movie set at a job fair that’s really weird and pointless that all of a sudden establishes that he’s stupid and thinks having a job is lame. At no point until then did he really seem like an idiot. It’s just bad scriptwriting. 
  • So basically, Rogen and Byrne are the worst parents in the world. I actually identified with them in the beginning as new parents, but they’re pretty much dickholes as a mom and dad. Who even attempts to have sex in front of their kid? I actually disliked them more and more until at the end there basically weren’t any protagonists left and I was just hoping the movie would end without a cameo by Snoop Dogg.

Overall: This movie has its funny moments but really it’s just the same stuff over and over again and none of the characters are all that likable. You’re supposed to be on the side of Rogen and Byrne but they’re just douchebags. There’s really not a ton to say about it, if you’ve seen a Seth Rogen comedy you’ve pretty much seen all of the jokes in this. It doesn’t break any sort of new ground, and college movies like Animal House and Revenge of the Nerds are infinitely better. I’ll recommend it if you’re under the influence of something and in the right mood, but there’s nothing special about it. Like using a condom.

Score: 6 half-eaten condoms (out of 10)

8 thoughts on “Reel Quick: Neighbors

  1. The baby in this movie was super adorable. Especially when she was laying there in her crib just kicking her legs out and giggling up at her dumb parents.

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  2. Laughed a bunch of times throughout this, but I also liked how well the message actually connected with the story and didn’t feel phony or tacked-on in any way. Good review.

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  3. I loved the relationship between the couple. They seemed really real and I liked that Byrne wasn’t this clichéd movie whining, submissive wife.

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  4. Aww – I liked it more than you but do agree with the things you’ve pointed out. Agree that baby was SO damn adorable!!! But I was worried about her welfare too often. Maybe parents of young children shouldn’t watch this – it was hard to turn that part of the brain off. ; ) Like… I wondered a few times if they’d gotten a babysitter. And I was also very concerned when they were at that party with the baby monitor & the baby was alone. And the air bags! What if they’d sat down on one while holding the baby? But I suppose we weren’t meant to think about it that much. ; )

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