Dir. Akiva Schaffer
Not perfect, but if you like the Lonely Island vids, then you could certainly do worse than this Adam Sandberg comedy, in which he plays a wannabe stuntman who plans to jump 15 school buses to raise money for his step-father’s heart transplant…so he can kick the old man’s ass. That’s the kicker in this film that’s half surreal and half an affectionate riff on late-80s teen flicks like Karate Kid. For goodness’ sake, 90% of the songs in this film are by Europe! And the rest are by John Farnham!
To be honest I wanted to laugh at this more than I did, what with Will Arnett in it and lots of slapstick goodness. I was reminded of the anything-goes attitude of early Stephen Chow (compare this to Chow’s Love on Delivery and tell me I’m wrong), and there’s one line by a newscaster that had me howling in the theater along with the three other people who had paid to see it.
A lot of the humor is undone by either: bad directing (Schaffer not knowing where to point the camera), bad editing (cutting too soon and not letting things hang just a little bit longer), or bad producing (leaning on both director and editor to cut the time down). Who knows? Check the riot scene and see what I mean.
Worth owning on DVD–lots of quotables. Hopefully they’ll be able to let rip next time, because this still feels very restrained.
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