Starring: Amy Schumer, Bill Hader, LeBron James, Colin Quinn, Tilda Swinton, John Cena
Directed by: Judd Apatow (The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Knocked Up, Funny People)
Synopsis: Romantic comedy about a promiscuous, foul-mouthed, alcoholic, happy-go-lucky, ne’er-do-well young woman journalist who falls for her subject, a surgeon for famous sports athletes.
What doesn’t work:
- Call me crazy, call me out of touch, you can even call me a curmudgeon but I did NOT like this movie. I wanted to state that right out in front. If you follow my reviews then you know that my opinion of modern-day comedies is not the best. It’s hard to put into words that don’t make me look like a crotchety old man who longs for the early days but I like my movies with jokes—funny ones. Not bad and awkward ones that take 5 minutes to get through and basically go nowhere and not even a grimace on my face. Seriously, if you enjoyed this movie and laughed at it enough to recommend it to someone, I would love to hear what your favorite scenes were. I have like 2 maybe 3 decent scenes that I actually laughed at and didn’t end up rolling my eyes and asking to no-one in particular, “Why? What was that?! That made no sense.”
- Judd Apatow has got to be stopped. I loved The 40-Year-Old Virgin a decade ago. I haven’t really seen it since. I even liked most of Knocked Up but after that, Judd decided that he wanted to be the next James L. Brooks (director of Terms of Endearment, As Good As It Gets, Spanglish) and copy that style of comedy. Basically, romantic-dramedy. And why does every Apatow flick need to be over 2 fucking hours?! No comedy should be over 90 minutes. But when you use 3 or 4 takes of a joke and actually use all those takes as one long joke—the running time is going to add up. Judd needs a better editor on these dramedys. Fucking dramedies. At least Apatow didn’t write this bore. But Amy Schumer did and that’s not a good sign for me liking her career from here on out.
- The chemistry between Bill Hader and Amy Schumer is weak. Amy’s character has always been a party girl who never wants to settle down and be in serious relationship. But along comes Hader’s doctor who is nebbish and awkward and she falls for him. Because reasons. I’m not entirely sure why he falls for her. There’s maybe 4 minutes of a romantic montage of various dates with them and boom they’re an item. Until they have like one fight and they break up. It all adds up yo cheesy and dull writing and with zero interest to the viewer who wants more than a clichéd romantic comedy. Then at the end [SPOILER, not really] she does something wacky and they get back together. HA…HA…HA. Fuck it.
- The chemistry between Brie Larson and Amy Schumer, who play sisters is extremely dull and poorly written as well. I like Larson and look forward to seeing more of her performances but in this (like Bill Hader) she’s wasting time and talent. It’s implied and somewhat shown that Larson has a lot of negativity toward their mean-spirited and cynical father (played nicely by Colin Quinn) because she blames him for their parents’ divorce and he doesn’t accept her step-son as his grandson. Yet she pays for his assisted-living situation and visits him. So OK, she has some qualms toward him, fine. But there was hardly any good scenes with her arguing with Amy or him about this. Then when he dies, at the funeral, Amy (I guess in a state of grief) lashes out toward her sister and starts a fight with her, all out of nowhere really. There just needed to be more evidence and proof of their rocky sisterhood for them to fight like that. Later on, they make up of course and this is all for naught anyway. Just really shows how much of a jerk Amy is in this film actually.
- Why in the hell is Matthew Broderick in this playing himself helping out Bill Hader with cajoling him to give Amy a second chance?! There’s a scene where LeBron James, tennis star Chris Evert, Matthew Broderick and Marv Albert have an “intervention” with Hader about getting back with Amy. It’s OK if you have to go back and read that twice, I don’t mind, because it makes absolutely no sense. As far as the film shows, Hader isn’t that heartbroken or distraught or even melancholy about his break-up. Its that weakly written in this film. Then LeBron (his “friend” and doctor) to feign an injury to get Hader to the intervention so Marv Albert could do his play-by-play schtick for the sake of comedy is bonkers. But I can understand having sports personalities to be there even though it makes little to no sense really since Hader is a sports doctor but why the hell is Broderick there? They don’t even explain that, which in turn, if they tried hard enough could’ve found a joke in the explanation somehow. I just don’t get it. I’m sorry.
- John Cena. I think the only times I found this movie worth laughing at was when Cena was on screen. He plays one of Amy’s boyfriends and he’s hysterical. In one scene while they’re playing hide the salami, she requests that he talk dirty to her. Cena then attempts this with various awkward ways. I wish there was a clip of it on YouTube but this is the best I could find, which I think is a deleted scene from the version I watched:
He’s also incredibly unaware of how gay he sounds, especially when he’s threatening someone. While seeing a movie and Amy is high and drunk and being distracting, people start complaining to Cena. Some sample dialogue:
- Colin Quinn had a lot of decent jokes and funny quips. As did Dave Attell, who plays a homeless man outside Amy’s apartment. I’d also give some nods to Tilda Swinton, who looks unrecognizable with long hair and color in her skin, who plays Amy’s domineering and no-nonsense boss.
- LeBron James played LeBron James great. His best role to date. No seriously, he was kinda funny acting awkward and trying to be funny.
Overall: I really don’t know where my sense of humor went. It can’t be true that every comedy since I graduated college that are big hits I find incredibly underwhelming and hardly funny. Old School, The Hangover, Bridesmaids, Harold and Kumar and Ted to name a just a few of the comedies in the last 10-15 years that I didn’t like really at all. But there has been a lot that I did enjoy like Anchorman, Super Troopers, Black Dynamite, Bad Santa, Shaun of the Dead and Step Brothers so maybe I’m being too hard on myself. But if you ask me if the ones I liked that I just mentioned are as good as the ones I love when I was younger, I’d say hell no, not all of them. Same goes for horror movies as well—both genre’s are in dire need of fresh, intelligent talent.
I can’t even comment on Amy Schumer because I really don’t know much about her stand-up or her TV show. So I have no idea if she’s breaking new ground or expanding her comedy with this film. All I can say is she could do better in my opinion. This film was awkward at best and the jokes were terrible. I’ll give you an example; while drinking with her co-workers Amy seduces and tries to bang a young intern. It’s a typical slurry-speeched performance of clumsy sex moves when his mom interrupts them (before actual intercourse) and it’s reveled that he is only 16 years old. Amy then screams, “FUCK!” That’s it. That’s the clever joke she wrote for someone who finds out that the kid that’s drunk and half naked that she tried to hump is Fuck! It’s just not clever to me at all.
Score: 4 Socks Covering John Cena’s Massive Boner (out of 10)