Barry Josephson

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The Tick Unveils New Trailer


Peter Serafinowicz Ben Edlund Barry Josephson Valorie Curry Michael Cerveris

The Tick may not sound like the most obvious name for a superhero, but that's exactly the name we can expect to see hit our screens in Amazon's newest production in their superhero spoof, and now we have an official trailer to introduce the "epic tale".

Peter Serafinowicz at the Empire Awards

Peter Serafinowicz attends the Empire Awards

Continue reading: The Tick Unveils New Trailer

Dirty Grandpa Review

Good

There's nothing clever about this deliberately rude and vulgar comedy, but certain audiences will find it absolutely hilarious. Never afraid to head straight into the cheapest, nastiest gag, director Dan Mazar and writer John Phillips throw their odd-couple stars into a series of riotously awkward situations, usually involving nudity. And even if it's not as funny as it ought to be, at least there's some meaning to the chaos.

Zac Efron plays Jason, a bright young Atlanta lawyer who takes after his workaholic father (Dermot Mulroney). But Jason's grandfather Dick (Robert De Niro) remembers a more interesting Jason, before ruthless ambition took over his life. So after Grandma's funeral, Dick asks Jason to drive him down to Florida a week before Jason is due to marry the high-maintenance Meredith (Julianne Hough). Jason quickly discovers that Grandpa is intent on sowing some very wild oats, detouring their journey through Daytona at spring break, where they meet a couple of girls (Aubrey Plaza and Zoey Deutch) who are up for pretty much anything. What Jason doesn't know is that Grandpa is doing all of this to remind Jason who he really is, and to show him how to enjoy life instead of control it.

The script sometimes lays on this message rather thickly in between a series of deliberately jaw-dropping gross-out sequences. Predictably, drugs and sex abound, and most of the jokes are so corny and ludicrous that they're not remotely believable. Everything that happens strains to shock the audience, which means that nothing is actually very shocking. But while the story has no tension at all, it also manages to grab hold of the audience simply because the characters are so vividly played by the fearless Efron and De Niro. Neither role is much of a stretch, but they dive into even the yucky and/or naked moments with gusto, developing some chemistry in the process.

Continue reading: Dirty Grandpa Review

Enchanted Review


Very Good
In a fairly surprising move, Disney has come forward and shown it has an actual sense of humor about its patented brand of cheesy, clichéd, and relentless peppiness. Previously, self-reference has been limited to cross marketing between one Disney film and the next; but in Enchanted the message seems to be: Yeah, we know we've got our share of hokey archetypes, but it works for us. It's a refreshing attitude.

Giselle lives in the conflation of every single Disney trope ever, in an animated, magical fairy-tale kingdom full of songs of her one true love. The evil queen (who is also a wicked stepmother) can't have some upstart marry the prince and move in on her territory, so she banishes Giselle from animation to reality: New York, to be precise.

Continue reading: Enchanted Review

Big Trouble Review


Terrible
Much has been said about Big Trouble, another film meant for a near-September 11th release that was postponed because its contents would be too upsetting amidst the tragedy. Now, seven months and countless airport security measures later, Touchtone Pictures has determined that it is a better time for the film's release.

But forget about September 11th for a moment and consider this: Is there ever a good time to release a film that endorses bribing airline personal for tickets to carry a suitcase containing a ticking nuclear bomb onto a plane? The answer is easy. Pre- or post-September 11th, there is no appropriate time for a comedy this poorly conceived. Big Trouble is irresponsible filmmaking; it doesn't even justify the space for an explanation. But since reviews are my business, let me try to sort out this movie's mess.

Continue reading: Big Trouble Review

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Barry Josephson Movies

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

There's nothing clever about this deliberately rude and vulgar comedy, but certain audiences will find...

Enchanted Movie Review

Enchanted Movie Review

In a fairly surprising move, Disney has come forward and shown it has an actual...

Big Trouble Movie Review

Big Trouble Movie Review

Much has been said about Big Trouble, another film meant for a near-September 11th release...

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