Hot Rod (2007)

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Self-proclaimed stuntman Rod Kimble is preparing for the jump of his life – to clear fifteen buses to raise money for his abusive stepfather Frank’s life-saving heart operation. (IMDb)
Yeah, I get it, comedy can be subjective, but with the way this film in particular is so endlessly creative and colourful and full of child-like wonder and fun in its quest for the laugh (which maybe could’ve been put on brief pause in Rod’s rock bottoms), I feel particularly called to shield it from from any big ol’ meanies who don’t like it. You do you, Hot Rod. Keep ringin’ those bells, jumpin’ those ramps, coolin’ those beans, singin’ those songs, and kickin’ that ass. You’re funny AF.
8/10 (Great)

 

Monsters vs. Aliens (2009)

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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”).
7/10 (Good)

Blades of Glory (2007)

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In 2002, two rival Olympic ice skaters were stripped of their gold medals and permanently banned from men’s single competition. Presently, however, they’ve found a loophole that will allow them to qualify as a pairs team. (IMDb)
Ferrell’s outlandish Chazz is the highlight here, with exaggerated rougeish charm (“Personal philosophy? Clothing optional”) and outrageous quirks (“I could not love a human baby more than I love this brush”), and his development from “lone wolf” to true friend is just as believable (even touching–see his night of temptation, final speech) as it is marked by humour. The supporting cast doesn’t add much, unfortunately, and neither does the rushed sports-plot (magnificent final performance aside).
6.5/10 (Alright)

The Lego Movie (2014)

An ordinary Lego construction worker, thought to be the prophesied ‘Special’, is recruited to join a quest to stop an evil tyrant from gluing the Lego universe into eternal stasis. (IMDb)
A quick-witted script loaded with hilarious dialogue and one-liners is executed perfectly by a stacked and perfectly cast voice line-up playing a diverse set of wacky characters. Self-aware Lego-humour and wild animated action round out this awesome aesthetic for a story that’s simple but strong in its message about creativity, social conformity, and self-worth, particularly in its unique and startlingly beautiful conclusion that shifts the movie from good fun to a great film.
8/10 (Great)

Wristcutters: A Love Story (2006)

A film set in a strange afterlife way station that has been reserved for people who have committed suicide. (IMDb)
The unique suicide afterlife premise here creates a fresh and fascinating atmosphere for the seen-before road trip dramedy format; bleak desert landscapes and dark city streets host a blend of moods ranging from melancholy (every character is a tragedy) to darkly comic (there’s humour but no one can smile) to bizarre (the black hole in the car). Needless to say, Waits’ presence on screen and in the soundtrack is a match made in heaven (or some kind of afterlife, at least). A great indie flick.
7.5/10 (Really Good)