I’m not really a fan of many of the people in this movie, except for Richard Ayoade and perhaps Jonah Hill, but Ben Stiller lost his way a long time ago, Vince Vaughn has never really been the same since his whatever-that-was with Jennifer Aniston, so going in to watch it was interesting.
Having said that, I still held out that this film would be good, I held out that it would be funny, that it wouldn’t just be another movie in which Stiller pulls some faces and tries to steal the show.
Bollocks! I hate being wrong! What happens in this film? Well, Stiller pulls some faces that remind you of Zoolander, Vaughn shouts a bit, Hill is the quiet weird one and Ayoade is criminally underused and then, well there’s a surprise, the Brit turns out to be the bad guy. Except he’s not. But is. Kind of.
Ayoade has about ten lines in the entire movie, there are parts of the movie where it’s just him and Stiller and yet he just stands there and doesn’t speak. I mean…what the? I can only think that the studio execs didn’t get him? Or his accent? Humour? I’ve no idea but, despite Stiller giving Ayoade his directing break with Submarine, I hope he stays clear of these movies going forwards.
This is, as you’d expect, part written by Seth Rogan and directed by Akiva Schaffer who’s better known as the director of Saturday Night Live. The directing is actual quite good, the opening scene in particular with the security guard is nicely done in my opinion. The rest of the movie is just ok.
The problem with the film is it just becomes another Stiller vehicle which is a shame as it has a lot of potential. Why is it that Seth Rogan, for example, can step back? He’s far better than Stiller in my opinion and yet he often writes and doesn’t include himself in the movies, somehow I just can’t see Stiller doing that, at least not as much.
And to put Ayoade in a movie and then use him as little as they do is just criminal, they would have been better putting him behind the camera, he might have made the film a bit special.
As it is it’s just another movie that has it’s moments but is ultimately lacking any kind of special moment that might push it that bit further.