August 23, 2013, - 7:23 pm
Well, it’s still August, Hollywood’s pet cemetery for garbage movies, sending them to this month to die a quick death. But this weekend’s offerings, while not great, were better than that of the previous weeks. But I wouldn’t pay ten bucks plus for any of these.
* “In a World . . .“: I had mixed feelings about this movie. On the one hand, it was funny, entertaining, and light. On the other hand, it was a feminist fantasy in which all of the men are either complete creeps or entirely weak and wimpy, and the women are the strong and righteous ones. And the movie’s writer, director, producer, and star, Lake Siegel–who goes by the name Lake Bell–clearly has a thing for defaming Jewish fathers.
Bell, whose real-life father is a Jew, Harvey Siegel, makes sure that we know that the father character in this movie–a horrible, horrible man–is Jewish. Played by Fred Melamed, a stereotypically-looking Jewish actor who appears to have walked off the pages of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion picture book, the father, Sam Solomon, drove her mother to death by his horrible behavior. The movie doesn’t just show you he’s Jewish, it tells you, as it’s mentioned in dialogue. He’s a cheater and a lech, who kicks his daughter out of the house so his much younger blonde bimbo girlfriend can move in. He’s also a misogynist who plots with another misogynist to keep women out of the movie trailer voice-over business. When he learns his competition is his daughter and that she got the voice-over contract for a major movie quadrilogy, he steps up the competition and tries to take it away from her and get the job for himself. When he fails, he storms out of an awards ceremony and goes into a cry-filled tirade. Um, my Jewish father was nothing like that. Not even close. He was loving and encouraged and helped me in my ambitions and pursuits. But that’s not the kind of Jewish father Lake Bell wants the world to know.
The story: Bell plays a voice-over coach who has long wanted to do voice-over work on commercials and suddenly starts getting that kind of work. Meanwhile, she’s living with her sister and her brother-in-law in their small Los Angeles apartment, because her oafish fat pig of a father has kicked her out to live out his middle-aged fantasy (see above) with his far younger blonde bim girlfriend. A wimpy voice-over studio owner who is helping Bell get the movie voice-over work has a thing for Bell but is too wimpy to tell her. Also, Bell’s sister, who is a hotel concierge, has a thing for an Irish (or is it Scottish?) hotel guest and cheats with him on her wimpy husband, who finds out.
The only redeeming thing about this movie is that, in the end when Bell gets the coveted quadrilogy movie trailer voice-over contract, the female producer tells her it’s not because she was the best voice-over voice, but because she’s a woman and it’s part of a deliberate feminist thing to help young girls. And that, unfortunately, is the reason behind a lot of things these days. Still, this honest moment in a sea of propaganda wasn’t good enough to justify the rest of this movie.
One other thing: it’s not sexist (contrary to this movie’s claims) to say that voice-overs performed by men sound better and are more effective, which is why men get the bulk of that work. I’ve made that point on this site before.
Watch the trailer . . .
* “You’re Next“: This incredibly bloody, violent movie is part comedy, part parody of ’70s and ’80s slasher films, and part thriller. That the heroine of the movie is a tiny woman who is probably not more than 90 pounds soaking wet, and fights off much bigger men, isn’t believable. That feminist plot point never is. Still it is entertaining and funny in a “I have 1.5 hours to waste and nothing to do with my time or money” kind of way. I also didn’t like that the movie goes out of its way to tell you that the killers “served together,” another dumb Hollywood attempt to defame American soldiers. No thanks.
The story: parents with several grown children bought a giant mansion as a “fixer-upper” project, after the father retires from his job at a “Blackwater-style” company and gets a large retirement package. The kids all come to the house with their significant others for a family get-together. The mother keeps hearing noises in the house, and soon the kids and their guests start getting murdered, mostly by mysterious men in bunny masks who have bows and arrows. I have to say that I didn’t mind that an “underground documentary maker” named Tarek was the first murder victim. Nor did I mind that the movie shows these kids to be spoiled rotten and completely stupid.
Like I said, this is entertaining and funny if you can deal with extremely gruesome murders and a lot of blood and are extremely bored. It’s a campy kind of slasher flick and better than others I’ve seen, though I don’t generally condone violent movies like this, and I think I’ve become desensitized to this stuff that used to cause me cover my eyes.
HALF A REAGAN
Watch the trailer . . .
* “The World’s End“: This movie was all over the place, way too long and tedious, and kind of a mess. Simon Pegg plays a loser from a small town in England who was once popular in high school and did a pub crawl of all the bars in town with his high school friends all those years ago. But, now, 20 years later, they’ve grown up and moved on with careers and families, and he’s some loser drug addict type with no apparent job or source of income. He gathers up all four of his old friends, who reluctantly join him to go back to the town to do the pub crawl. Soon, however, they learn that the town has been taken over by alien invaders impersonating the townsfolk and seeking to take over their bodies.
While some of this movie was funny, it mostly grated on me as it went on too long and each bar scene seemed like the same thing over and over again. It just got very silly and boring, very quickly, and what was just and hour and 45 minutes seemed like three hours. Also Simon Pegg and his friends just weren’t all that likable or interesting to pull this off. After sitting through this, I felt like a time bandit had robbed me and I didn’t even get a t-shirt to show for it.
Watch the trailer . . .
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