Tag Archives: Comedy

Your Highness unfortunately unfunny

Your Highness in a nutshell: It’s like a 13 year-old boy wrote a script because he thought: “Wouldn’t it be funny if there was a Medieval-themed fantasy film with swearing and jokes about blowjobs?!”  You’ll chuckle the first few times they do this, but the novelty wears thin quickly. Continue reading

Robert Rodriguez directs short film The Black Mamba

Director of Sin City Robert Rodriguez just made a short film for Nike featuring Kobe Bryant, along with cameos from previous Rodriguez collaborators – and it’s awesome. Continue reading

“Shaun of the Dead” alumni bring hilarity to sci-fi comedy “Paul”

The last time you saw Nick Frost and Simon Pegg together they were in Hot Fuzz, diving through the air firing two guns at the same time screaming “Ahhh!”  Four years later, Frost and Pegg have written and starred in a hilarious ode to all things sci-fi in Paul.

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TV Worth Watching: Community’s Battlestar Galactica is Breaking Bad at Sealab 2021

I suppose one of the defining features of a film snob is abhorrence for television.  All those commercial breaks, laugh tracks, overwrought dramatics.  But in both film and television there’s a lot of crap – you just have to know where to find the good stuff.  So as a film fan who does not have cable or those digital boxes to even watch basic channels, here are the shows (past and present) that make me wish I did. Continue reading

Dreamworks’ “Megamind” still can’t compete with Pixar

Since late spring there has been continuous buzz about the latest from Dreamworks, Megamind.  Starring Will Ferrell, Tina Fey, Brad Pitt, and Jonah Hill, this animated superhero film about a supervillain switching sides sounds pretty enticing – which it is and is not.

There are some enjoyable aspects to Megamind, but it fails to reach the dramatic heights of a Pixar film. Instead it’s more of an “eh” movie experience.  A Donkey Kong reference, allusions to Superman (comic book origins and the original film), and  other general comedy bits had me laughing more than the kids in the audience; and when the usual setup between superhero and supervillain is subverted, I was actually impressed.  However, this surprising moment occurs early and there aren’t any other intriguing plot elements to sustain the film for the rest of the run time.

Overall it’s an okay film, but nothing sublime.  You probably don’t want to pay to see this in cinemas, but would be a decent rental.

*In the film, supervillain Megamind has posters made of himself much like the Barack Obama posters of 2008, except they say “No you can’t.” which provides an amusing, albeit, sad sting after the 2010 elections this week.

Due Date

Robert Downey Jr. has been riding high since being cast as Tony Stark in the Iron Man films, in which he showcases a wit and charm that seemingly no one (male or female) can resist.  Zach Galifianakis, playing the tubby, bumbling buffoon Alan in The Hangover, has  likewise become famous enough to merit Halloween costumes after his character.  So it seems like a perfect storm architectured by studio heads to make another Hangover type hit by combining these actors for a comedy romp road trip.  Unfortunately, there’s no lightning or thunder, just a few static shocks and a light rain. Continue reading

“Jackass 3D” recalls early cinema, but more mean-spirited

The first films ever made were single reels of a recorded event.  A boat rocking in the ocean as the sun set; a baby eating between smiling parents. These were soon followed by the fantastic special effects of the Méliès films and the daring do’s of Buster Keaton.  The work of the Jackass team is working within parameters strangely reminiscent of early cinema- but with much more mean spiritedness and fecal matter. Continue reading

“It’s Kind of a Funny Story” better at bringing the drama

Right before It’s Kind of a Funny started, there was a trailer for Meet the Fockers.  It struck me that many comedies emulate the same advertising strategy as Fockers and even It’s Kind of a Funny Story.  There’s almost a predictable tempo that has evolved, with jokes delivered, pause, reply, cue laughter.  Almost as if some of these moments were written for the trailer.  The result is like seeing a haggard prostitute begging for clients long after the sex appeal has worn off.  Thankfully this labored funniness doesn’t stifle Funny Story. Continue reading

Arvin Chen discusses filmmaking, writing, and New Wave influences for Au Revoir Taipei

After seeing the delightful Au Revoir Taipei at the Edinburgh Film Fest, I had a chance to sit down and talk to the director about romantic comedies, French New Wave influences, and challenges as a writer. Continue reading

“Au Revoir Taipei” is light hearted goodness

Every now and again, it’s really nice to just see a simple, fun movie.  Enter Au Revoir Taipei. Continue reading