As we await the arrival of Man of Steel next weekend, there are some new movies in theaters to help us pass the time. Which movie is worth seeing this weekend, The Wedding Crashers crashing the world’s biggest company or a dystopian society where all crime is legal for half a day? Read to your heart’s content to see whether either movie is worth your time and money.
After Wedding Crashers, Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn were the new comedy power couple. Then Vince Vaughn oversaturated the movie market with his fast-talking shtick and Owen Wilson hid from everyone. Now, 8 years later, these guys reunite in the Google product placement movie known as The Internship.
Vince and Owen play two slick salesmen whose skills and industry become obsolete with the digital age. (Did a new digital age just begin? I’m pretty sure we’ve been in it for over a decade.) Not wanting to be stuck in low-level jobs for the rest of their careers, they apply for an internship opening at Google. It’s clear from the second they enter the Googleplex, they’re too old and not tech-wise enough to compete with the very young college whiz kids who form their competition. But they join with a group of hopeful interns and compete in fun challenges to win careers at Google.
You can see where this is going. It’s a fish out of water story where these gadget-inept adults are able to teach techies that people skills are just as valuable as learning code and knowing how to use the internet. For some reason, one of the challenges involves a Quidditch competition. Now, I’m not sure if they actually do this during training on the Google campus, but it didn’t seem very relevant. The Onion recently made a video about how outdated The Internship feels and they nail it. Sure, it’s fun to see giant Vince Vaughn throw a kickball at 20 year olds, but it’s not all that funny.
I hate to say this, but Vaughn works best when he’s dealing with R-rated material. He’s on his game when he’s able to talk dirty. In the Internship, which is PG-13, he can’t resort to using shocking language and seems to just keep talking until he finds a joke. The comedy is never quite able to find its mark. Owen Wilson plays the straight man once again. Though, he actually gets the best (albeit too short) scene in the movie when he’s purposely trying to be the typical jerk on a date.
This movie plays like a lesser Revenge of the Nerds meets the corporate world. There is the stereotypical bully who is so cartoonish, he may as well be twirling his evil mustache. This movie references a few 80’s movies, specifically Flashdance, and it feels like it wants to be an 80’s movie where the underdogs win it all. They even have the restrained Asian stereotype who throws his inhibitions to the wind after one drink. This movie is everything we’ve seen before and will continue to see.
This movie is not un-funny. It just doesn’t have any guffaw-worthy laughs. I found myself smiling more than 4 times, but smiling isn’t enough when a movie is 2 hours long.
I don’t think that comedy was the movie’s main goal. This movie wants you to believe that working at Google is every person’s dream. Even though I wouldn’t mind working there (maybe the propaganda worked), it still beats you over the head with how “cool” they are. I was just a little put off when the credits rolled and I saw “Directed by Google, produced by google, based on a screenplay by Google, and starring Google.” Okay that didn’t really happen, but it feels like it.
I’m being kind and giving this a rental because there were people (who don’t watch trailers) laughing at my screening.
The year is 2022. American society is at its highest point. Unemployment is 1%, crime is at an all time low and the economy is thriving. The cause of this societal success is credited to the purge, a yearly occurrence where ALL crime is legal for 12 hours.
Defenders of the Purge claim that anyone is able to get out their aggression one day a year and live their lives like the contributing citizens they are. Detractors of this violent governmental policy claim that the economy is only thriving because the Purge allows people to eliminate the poor, in the most brutal way possible.
First off, I love this concept. Sure, the filmmakers are asking us to suspend disbelief with this dystopian society, but they make it clear that people got desperate when the economy was bad (which is right now) and the “New Founding Fathers” enacted the Purge and “everything got better.” Okay, I think I’m analyzing this movie far more than it was meant to be.
Ethan Hawke and his family are very wealthy and have a top-of-the-line security system that seals up their house so they can wait out the dreadful night in peace. That all changes when Hawke’s son sees a bloodied man calling for help and he lets him in. It turns out that this man is being hunted by a pack of prep-school murderers and they want to finish what they started. They give Hawke and his family a deadline to release the wounded man or they’ll come in and kill the entire family.
It’s a terrifying idea that is made worse by the face that they’re wearing sinister masks. Their designated leader, played by Rhys Wakefield, is so menacing even without a mask. He was very reminiscent of Christian Bale’s Patrick Bateman character from American Psycho. (That’s a very good thing) I’m sure this guy will be in several more movies and follow a Cillian Murphy type career. (You know the type, creepy guy, yet great acting.)
The problem with this movie is not its violence, it’s actually that it doesn’t go dark enough. Once the masked crew breaks in the house, the movie loses suspense and fear. It becomes a mix of Straw Dogs and The Strangers.
If you’re a fan of grindhouse type cinema, this will be right up your alley. It’s a breeze at a short 86 minutes. The short run-time is perfect because it’s tight and if it were to run any longer, every scene would feel delayed and stretched out.
The Purge is rental quality, but really should be seen during its opening weekend, because it becomes a crowd participation film. You will cheer as several masked/unmasked villains get their due.