A spin-off from 2014's awesome The Lego Movie, this raucously paced action-comedy is proof that nonstop hilarity isn't enough. Genre fans will adore the relentless barrage of silliness, as wordplay, sight-gags, film references and elaborate jokes pile on top of each other. But it's all rather exhausting, because the story is simply too slippery for the audience to hold onto.
When we catch up with Batman (again voiced by Will Arnett), he's revelling in his lonely life surrounded by his huge collection of gadgets in the cave under Wayne Manor, where his only companion is his sardonic butler Alfred (Ralph Fiennes). But an encounter with the Joker (Zach Galifianakis) gets him thinking about his solitude, and new commissioner Barbara Gordon (Rosario Dawson) wants to work with him rather than let him do everything on his own. Then he inadvertently adopts the orphan Dick (Michael Cera), just as the Joker puts into motion a nefarious plan to unleash an army of bad guys on Gotham City.
The film pings from one crazed action set-piece to the next, packing comical touches into every image and each line of dialogue. The audience has little choice but to hold on for the ride, and since it's impossible to see every gag that flies at us, this is clearly a movie that requires multiple viewings. The problem is that the story and characters aren't very inviting. Arnett's gruff whisper is genuinely hilarious, especially in his postmodern flights of fancy, but Batman is a preening idiot, really. Dawson, Cera, Fiennes and Galifianakis are more likeable, but are sidelined in the story. And the sprawling, mega-starry supporting cast offers a continual stream of solid laughs. But it's all so frantic that the sentimental themes in the story never get a chance to resonate before the script makes fun of them.
Continue reading: The Lego Batman Movie Review
Writer-director John Hamburg continues to recycle the formula that made his first hit Meet the Parents so wildly popular, as this comedy pits two very different men against each other. And while it's never terribly clever, at least James Franco and Bryan Cranston are imaginatively cast as opposite forces. So audiences in search of escapism will find plenty to chuckle at as things spiral ludicrously out of control.
Cranston plays Ned, who travels with his wife Barb (the fabulous Megan Mullally) and teen son Scotty (Griffin Gluck) to Silicon Valley to spend the holidays with older daughter Steph (Zooey Deutch) and meet her boyfriend Laird (Franco). What they don't know is that Laird is an internet millionaire with absolutely no filter in how he interacts with people. Almost everything he says is inappropriate, and yet it's so honest that it's disarming. Still, Ned and Barb aren't too happy that their daughter is so serious about dating this guy. And with the help of his sidekick Gustav (Keegan-Michael Key), Laird goes completely over-the-top to impress them.
Much of the humour is of the gross-out variety, with the main running gag centring on an actual toilet. But at least the jokes aren't about embarrassment this time; they're about the clash between people who prefer to keep their true feelings bottled up inside and someone who can't help but be real, despite the fact that he shocks everyone he meets. This makes each person a little more complex than expected, and gives the actors some texture to work with, even though the script never bothers to even crack the surface. And while Cranston and Franco have more obvious comedy set-pieces to contend with, the film is stolen by Mullally and Key in roles that are more subtly hilarious and broadly amusing, respectively.
Continue reading: Why Him? Review
Adam DeVine seen at the Lakers game. The New York Knicks defeated the Los Angeles Lakers by the final score of 118-112 at the Staples Center, Los Angeles, California, United States - Sunday December 11, 2016
Watching this gross-out comedy, it's clear that the gifted cast and crew had a great time making it. Scenes are packed with wildly ridiculous improvisation, as the script throws characters into some genuinely outrageous situations. And yet it's never actually funny. The longer the film goes on, the more the audience will wonder why they don't feel in on the joke.
It's loosely based on the true story of chucklehead brothers Mike and Dave (Adam Devine and Zac Efron), whose parents (Stephen Root and Stephanie Faracy) tell them they can't go stag to the wedding of their sister (Sugar Lyn Beard) in Hawaii. They have to find dates to calm down the antics that have ruined family events for years. So Mike and Dave put an ad on Craigslist, and it goes viral, drawing the attention of slacker flatmates Tatiana and Alice (Aubrey Plaza and Anna Kendrick). Pretending to be nice girls, they win over Mike and Dave and head to Hawaii for the big event. But the girls are even more anarchic than the boys. So it's no surprise that a wave of disruptive mayhem follows.
Basically this is a simple coming-of-age story, structured like a standard romantic-comedy that plays out in a series of messy set-pieces. Every beat of the plot is predictable, and the big surprise is that the filmmakers seem terrified of genuine sexuality. Despite using sex and nudity as the (ahem!) butt of most jokes, the film is childish and even prudish. And it doesn't help that virtually all of the gags are obvious and cheap.
Continue reading: Mike And Dave Need Wedding Dates Review
Mike and Dave are two brothers who can't help but compete with one another. They're best friends and do everything together, but when it comes to playing a lifelong game of one-upmanship they're both in it to win it. When their sister announces that she's marrying her partner in Hawaii, Mike & Dave's mum and dad are instantly horrified by the possible antics their sons could get up to.
In a bid to calm their potential actions, it's suggested to the boys that they both bring a respectable date to the wedding. Someone they can present to their families and show a completely different - and more mature - side to their personality.
Alice and Tatiana are two girls who could actually rival the brothers and any of their past behaviour, who see Mike & Dave on TV talking about their search for a partner and decide that they're just the girls to accompany the boys to the island wedding. Their plan is successful but Mike and Dave soon figure out that there's more to the girls than they first thought.
This is one of those warm, unchallenging comedies that's entertaining to watch even though something about it feels vaguely inane. Basically, nothing about it is even remotely realistic; people never actually do or say these kinds of things. But we kind of wish they did. And as writer-director Nancy Meyers makes a series of pointed observations about the value of age and experience, we can't help but wistfully smile and nod along.
It's set in a picturesque mix of old and new Brooklyn, where pensioner Ben (Robert De Niro) has run out of ways to make his life interesting after his wife of more than 40 years died. He's done the travelling, spent time with his grandson on the opposite side of the country, and now he's applying to be a senior intern at a wildly successful fashion website. He's assigned to work with founder and CEO Jules (Anne Hathaway), an overachiever who prefers to do everything herself while her equally astute husband (Anders Holm) stays home with their adorable daughter (JoJo Kushner). Jules is so busy that she barely notices that both her company and her marriage are slipping out of her grasp, but Ben is sharp as a tack, and gently helps her reset her priorities. Meanwhile, he also finds romance himself with the company's hot masseuse (Rene Russo).
Virtually everything in this movie feels comfortable and easy, with conflicts that aren't actually that difficult to manage and side characters who never steal the spotlight from the stars. The only dark shadow in the film appears when Ben discovers that Jules' husband is having an affair, and her reaction nicely sidesteps the usual way movies approach the issue. Otherwise, the film plays along nicely, never ruffling feathers while constantly pointing out how wise old people are, really. Thankfully, De Niro is so relaxed in the role that he avoids sentimentality, effortlessly mixing the comedy and drama. He sparks some engaging father-daughter-style chemistry with Hathaway, who nicely mixes Jules' tough drive with an underlying yearning to get her life back in balance.
Continue reading: The Intern Review
'When attending anniversary screening of 'Camp Bloodbath', an infamous 80s horror flick starring her later mother, Max and her friends get mysteriously sucked into the silver screen. Finding themselves actually trapped inside the cult classic movie the gang soon realise that they must team up with the characters in order to battle the film's machete-wielding killer. But among the blood and gore Max must also face her emotions regarding her late mother who is ever present as the movie's heroine. As the body count starts to rise as each iconic scene take place the gang need to work out who to align with in order to make it all the way to the end credits.
Continue: The Final Girls - Trailer Trailer
Retired and, frankly, bored, 70-year-old Ben Whittaker decides the quiet life is not one he needs right now and instead opts for a career move. He applies as a senior intern for a fashion website following the death of his wife, and despite his age he is taken on by the young company CEO Jules Ostin. It isn't long before Ostin beccomes increasingly reliant on Whittaker as he becomes something of a grandfather figure to her; his old-fashioned charm, positive energy and kind wisdown beguiling her as she struggles under the pressure of managing an ever-growing business. Even the board are suggesting she take on a new manager to take off some of the pressure, so Whittaker is exactly what she needs to boost her self esteem and help her stay on track. She's not the only one with a soft spot for Whittaker; the youth of the rest of the office are being taught a thing or two about relationships of all kinds, as he himself learns about the beauty of the modern world.
Continue: The Intern - Extended Trailer
Jimmy Price knows his days as a doubles tennis player are nearly over, and since he's made a few enemies on the pro circuit, things start to look bleak when his latest partner drops him. With no other option, Jimmy tries to revive his career by convincing his estranged brother (and former tennis partner) Darren to give their partnership another shot. With the help of an 11-year-old named Barry, the duo enter a grand slam tournament, but are they out of their depth?
Continue: Break Point Trailer
In 2012, Pitch Perfect came out of nowhere to become one of the most-loved comedies in recent memory, and the good news is that this sequel matches it with both spiky humour and buoyant music. It would be impossible recreate the surprise of watching the original, but the cast and crew make up for that by kicking everything off with an outrageously rude prologue (complete with the biggest cameo imaginable), and the comedy that follows is relentlessly hilarious.
It's been three years, and the Bellas are now in their final year at university, having won three more a cappella National Championships along the way. Then they're disgraced by a wardrobe malfunction at a triumphant performance for the US President's birthday. Suspended by officials, their only chance to redeem themselves is to win the World Championships in Copenhagen. So Beca (Anna Kendrick) and her sidekicks Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson) and Chloe (Brittany Snow) rally the troops to prepare to take on the fearsome reigning champions Das Sound Machine. And there's a new Bella on the team as well: freshman Emily (Hailee Steinfeld), who is dabbling in songwriting.
Along with this central plot, Kay Cannon's script also weaves in a series of side-stories for each of the central cast members involving decisions about the future and romantic entanglements. All of these are a bit feeble, but they add layers of comedy, drama and even some meaning, although there isn't a single surprise along the way. Still, it's consistently amusing, as every line of dialogue has a witty joke in it, and the performances crackle with improvisational silliness that's genuinely infectious. Once again, the seriously gifted Kendrick is effortlessly charismatic as the natural leader of the gang, while the class-clown Wilson steals every scene with her random gags. Steinfeld offers a fresh blast of energy and talent in her role, although the perky Snow is somewhat sidelined this time.
Continue reading: Pitch Perfect 2 Review
Ben Whittaker is a 70-year-old retiree who has little left in his life to keep him occupied, now that his wife has passed away. He's keen to re-start and take on new job and discovers a vacant position for a senior intern at a fashion website. He gets the job to much surprise from the rest of the company. The site is run by Jules Ostin; a young entrepreneur who's visibly struggling in her role as CEO and feels like she's on the verge of a crisis. Ben becomes an unlikely confidante, boosting her self-esteem with words of wisdom and worldly advice, as she in turn shows him the wonders of modern life and technology. The other young employees are starting to feel that they could take a leaf out of his book too, as the smart and sophisticated Ben proves firmly that there's life in the old dog yet.
Continue: The Intern Trailer
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This is one of those warm, unchallenging comedies that's entertaining to watch even though something...
'When attending anniversary screening of 'Camp Bloodbath', an infamous 80s horror flick starring her later...
Retired and, frankly, bored, 70-year-old Ben Whittaker decides the quiet life is not one he...
Jimmy Price knows his days as a doubles tennis player are nearly over, and since...
In 2012, Pitch Perfect came out of nowhere to become one of the most-loved comedies...
Ben Whittaker is a 70-year-old retiree who has little left in his life to keep...