The set up is fine, but then halfway through dinner the engaging conflict with outsider mom Kate promptly disappears in a whiff of marijauna smoke and we’re left with a mostly chemistry-less foursome doing some generic letting loose with no real purpose or character arcs to fulfill. There’s a good skit or two (see the weed shop stop; Melanie interrogating Alfred) but there’s also way too much Adam Levine (his whole subplot is excruciating), and the dad storyline doesn’t really work either.
Clever lil’ goobers Phoebe and Podcast are incredibly endearing, and so is Paul Rudd’s lil’ Grooberson, and Wolfhard’s got his goofy teen thing going, and there’s gooey and hilariously homicidal marshmallows too, and ghosts and gunner seats, and it’s all just gobs of fun, though the character and setting-setting up first half works better than the second, where it feels like the all the good character work gets possessed and discarded by nostalgia and cameos and a big end-of-the-world plot.
“You look out of breath!” Tell me about it. “Well, it looks like you just watched a comedy where the jokes came with the frequency and intensity of a taut thriller.” You can say that again. “You look like you just watched a comedy where the jokes came with the frequency and intensity of a taut thriller.” Tell me about it. Poehler and Paul head up a pitch-perfect parody parade with endless energy, bite (“Whatthefuckareyousaying?”), and genuine chemistry on display. “Hey Joel?” Yeah? “Thanks.”
When he finds out that his work superiors host a dinner celebrating the idiocy of their guests, a rising executive questions it when he’s invited, just as he befriends a man who would be the perfect guest. (IMDb)
Carell’s schuperb schmuck schtick (“I guess you could say I’m an eternal optometrist”) centers this film, contributing to its great odd couple comedy, driving its excruciating Murphy’s law plot (the brunch scene was a marvel of awkward horror), and providing hints of heart too. The potential inspirational message is botched in the messy pivotal dinner scene (Barry’s beautiful dream presentation was overshadowed by the dumb hi-jinx afterwards) but the reunion at Tim’s place was a nice recovery.
From the devastating opening scene to the goosebump-inducing climactic action sequence, the scope and spectacle here will blow you away. Rich with humour (Thor and Ant-Man are highlights but even stoic Cap hass his moments), emotion, and inside references, it brings the MCU to a remarkable climax and resolve. After the blockbuster-high wears off some issues emerge (the main plot concept is severely underexplained; some characters are–understandably–neglected), but it remains a monumental film.
A woman transformed into a giant after she is struck by a meteorite on her wedding day becomes part of a team of monsters sent in by the U.S. government to defeat an alien mastermind trying to take over Earth. (IMDb)
You can see it coming from a mile away thanks to the douchey Derek, but the character arc for Susan is a nice one (“I’m not going to shortchange myself ever again!”), adding substance to the bare-bones plot, while appreciably not feeling the need to pair her off with someone else at the end. A great gaggle of quirky secondary characters, meanwhile, keep the chuckles coming quite consistently (Rogen’s dimwitted blob monster is a standout: “I think that jello gave me a fake phone number”).
As Scott Lang balances being both a Super Hero and a father, Hope van Dyne and Dr. Hank Pym present an urgent new mission that finds the Ant-Man fighting alongside The Wasp to uncover secrets from their past. (IMDb)
The plot leaves a few things to be desired (namely, less of the increasingly convenient and far-fetched tech and its accompanying untethered babble; also, resolving things with the Ghost could’ve been done a lot earlier), but everything around it is quite satisfying: the characters are likeable, the jokes are frequent and funny (see the truth serum bit), and the size-changing action is lots of fun (the visual effects here are excellent and quite clever-see the final reveal at the drive-in).
With the ’70s behind him, San Diego’s top-rated newsman, Ron Burgundy, returns to take New York’s first 24-hour news channel by storm. (IMDb)
The bad: A recycled rise-fall-redemption plot, flimsy satire, and a painful new-love-interest side plot (Good’s bad turn doesn’t help). The good: All the ridiculous comedy of the first film is pushed to eleven. The news team still offers loads of great humour (see Ferrell’s blind bit), with the unpredictability of the nonsensical Brick in particular coming fast and furious, just like the outrageous plot-gags (see the shark adoption; bat-shit crazy cameo-loaded everything-loaded final brawl).
A rich high school student tries to boost a new pupil’s popularity, but reckons without affairs of the heart getting in the way. (IMDb)
The title is apt for all the wrong reasons; this is teen comedy at its most childish and uninspired. The high school stereotypes are a staple for most films of this ilk (especially for this supposed satire), but the story they are placed in is so bland and surface-y that more complex (or at least extreme) characters are needed (only Murphy’s Tai is ever really funny). The “satire” here needs to be much more gregarious and biting for it to make up for the lazy story and uninteresting characters.