Fighting With My Family

Fighting With My Family is a topic that combines a few things: real life story, wrestling, and British people doing silly things. We haven’t had a title like this in awhile.

Directed by Stephen Merchant, who I had the pleasure of interviewing after the movie and you can read the interview here, it is the story of wrestler Paige. How she grew up in bumfuck England and somehow made it to the WWE, despite not being their typical female wrestler.

I can’t imagine if we had any actual bio films actually based on wrestlers. Documentaries, sure, but like a young Hulk Hogan movie? A young Rock? A young Macho Man Randy Savage? It is relatively interesting that the first one to get one is a woman wrestler named Paige, who is probably only big in the wrestling circuits.

Dreams
This is what dreams are made of.

Saraya Knight (Florence Pugh) did not have dreams of growing up to be a wrestling super star, she was indifferent to it. Sure she trained for it like every regular kid. Wait, what?

Oh, her parents are “professional” wrestlers. Her dad (Nick Frost) and mom (Lena Headey) run a very small wrestling company in their small community. Helps them stay clean off of drugs and violence. They train people, they put on shows, they have a good time. Saraya’s older brother, Zak (Jack Lowden), did have the dream his whole life. And thanks to a video, they both are going to have a chance to audition for the WWE!

And then they are going to have to deal with the fact that Saraya, who is going by Paige, made it to the next round of training, and Zak is still stuck at home. She took his dream. And the dream and training in America is going to be tough, lonely and destroy their whole dynamic.

But can she make it? (she can, we know that). And if she can make it, can she be a star? (also yes.) But what does she have to accomplish first? (okay good question).

Also starring Dwayne Johnson and Vince Vaughn.

ring
“First we kick each others ass, then we kick all of the other asses.”

Fighting With The Family is an enjoyable film but very much by the numbers. A long shot trains, gets betters, and does the unthinkable, and people love her. Along the way were hardships, that made her want to change, quit, and more, but she conquered them. Hooray!

So you aren’t getting anything new from the plot, just the setting. Wrestlers, British trailer trash, and Vince Vaughn playing himself as a talent coordinator.

However, it is clear the actors are really going all in for it. No one is trying to half ass this movie, there is high energy, especially from Headey/Frost. It is great to see The Rock be the Rock again and go all Rocky with it.

Pugh carries a lot of the film as well, and does a really good job for a young actress.

I think this film suffers a bit from trying to put too much story into a short amount of time. Things are rushed, and her struggles don’t seem super apparent. A lot of problems are more obvious communication issues so the audience just has to struggle until she gets her shit together.

But overall, not the worst movie about a WWE star that I have never heard about before.

2 out of 4.

Brawl in Cell Block 99

Brawl in Cell Block 99 is a great title. It is descriptive, while also leaving enough mystery to make you wonder. It highlights a single fight, which means it is a fight that should stand out in a movie that probably has a lot of fights. And it just has good letters. Those B’s are powerful, not a lot of B’S in movies lately, let alone multiple Bs.

This is brought to us by S. Craig Zahler, who gave us Bone Tomahawk recently. It was well known and received for being a slow, well acted western, with also one really gross death scene that really rattled people.

And this one is about prison! I am sure it will be perfectly quaint, although, not your average action film. Its run time is over two hours, so it better have a lot of story to tell in between punches.

Not99
This is not the titular brawl, just the Brawl in the Prison Yard.

Bradley Thomas (Vince Vaughn) is an honest working man, a bit of a tall muscular freak, but hard working. He is a tow driver, which makes below average pay. But he has been fired from that. And at home, he found out his wife, Lauren (Jennifer Carpenter), was cheating on him. He deals with his anger the only way he knows, and not on her. They agree to work through it, to go for a baby, and Bradley will go back to being a drug dealer (not a user), where his size and strength can come in handy.

And now, a year and a half later, everything is fine! They have a bigger house, a baby girl on the way, life is looking up!

Until Bradley gets a job he does not want to do. The thugs involved with the deal look like users. They look like no good people who will try and kill and steal and put him in the line of fire. He agrees reluctantly only because if he does that he will get three months off paid once his baby is born. See, even if the drug business has better parental leave than the USA!

Bradley takes the deal, things go south, and sure, Bradley is in prison. He is blamed for the deal going south of course, so he is told that unless he kills another prisoner, they will get someone to perform a very late term abortion on his wife, and his not yet born baby girl will, well, stay that way. The only issue is, this guy is in a much more extreme prison, so he has to “earn” his way there by going against his own morals and code and hurting people to save the ones he loves.

Also starring Dan Amboyer, Don Johnson, Geno Segers, Marc Blucas, Tom Guiry, and Udo Keir.

Prison
This is not the titular brawl, this isn’t a brawl at all!

While watching Brawl in Cell Block 99, I had two main thoughts: One, when are we getting to this brawl that they needed to emphasize in the title? and two, Vaughn is really carrying this power and weight in this role. I was intimidated by him and awed by him. They made his character smart, strong, and oddly moral. When you expected domestic violence, you got instead a calm rational human, who didn’t even yell. It was odd and satisfying.

Anyways, there are a handful of action scenes pre-brawl to entertain those who ned punching. Of course some of that is just people straight up beating up one person, some of it is Vaughn seeming like a super hero.

Okay okay, at this point I am stalling. Once the brawl started to happen, it got really tense as it first had to involve a breakout attempt. Watching our moral character beat up guards at a level of realizing he is doing wrong, trying not to hurt them too bad, while also doing it for his wife and unborn girl. And then the actual part that matters, well I HAD TO STOP WATCHING ONCE IT STARTED. IT GOT REALLY INTENSE, REALLY QUICKLY AND I COULD ONLY GAG AND COUGH AND SHRIEK TO MYSELF. After that, it wasn’t that bad BUT IT STILL GOT REALLY INTENSE.

I had to type in caps there to properly show just how freaked out this movie got very quickly. It ramped up several notches, and frankly I wasn’t ready for it. The high rating isn’t just for those scenes, but for the whole build up, for seemingly telling a unique story in a familiar location, and just how strong Vaughn was in it.

I should have known what I was getting into with the director, and next time I won’t be caught unawares. After all, the next film is called Dragged Across Concrete, which is extremely descriptive and I am already gagging in anticipation.

4 out of 4.

Hacksaw Ridge

Hacksaw Ridge, like most movies I saw in the month of October, I went in without knowing the actual plot and without seeing a trailer. I love it.

Here is what I did know, though. I knew it was about World War II. I knew it was directed by Mel Gibson, who hasn’t directed a war film in a long time. You know, Braveheart. And I naturally assumed it was at least 2.5 hours long and it would be unexpectedly graphic.

Oh and hey, it of course has Andrew Garfield. A generally solid actor, who has been solid post Spider-Man. 99 Homes was a surprising treat and I expect great things from him here.

Punchy
Like I expect him to be able to take a hit from Private muscles over there.

Desmond Doss (Andrew Garfield) is a weird guy. His dad (Hugo Weaving) served in WW1 and has never been the same, making him an alcoholic abuser of both his kids and his wife (Rachel Griffiths). After an incident where he almost killed his brother (Nathaniel Buzolic) in a fight, Desmond vowed to never hurt a soul again, going full Christian.

Years later, World War II is starting and his brother had left for the war. In fact, all of Desmond’s friends left for the war. It is his duty as an American Patriot to join his friends to help stop an evil threat right? But can he do that and NOT kill? Well, he has always been interested in being a doctor but didn’t even graduate high school. After he meets and falls in love with a nurse, Dorothy Schutte (Teresa Palmer), he is able to gain some knowledge.

So he decides to sign up as a conscientious objector, refusing to even touch a gun, wanting to serve as an unarmed medic. And yeah, a lot of problems happen, in boot camp mostly, but he is able to metaphorically fight his way through and get sent to Japan to face horrifying conditions, with one goal: Save a few lives. Also featuring Vince Vaughn as the Drill Sergeant, Sam Worthington as their Captain, and Luke Bracey as fellow private and asshole.

You want your group of soldiers and commanders that also appear in this film? Well, hold on to your helmets. We got Michael Sheasby, Firass Dirani, Luke Pegler, Ben Mingay, Nico Cortez, Goran D. Kleut, Harry Greenwood, Damien Thomlinson, Ben O’Toole, Richard Pyros, Jacob Warner, Milo Gibson, and of course, Richard Roxburgh.

Save!
And countless more names play rag doll dying soldiers on both sides.

Gibson is a sunnova gun if there ever was one. Because Hacksaw Ridge is a movie that just seems to hit every note perfectly. It is cheesy and gory. It is loving and unforgiving. It is a few types of movies all rolled up in one.

The time just flew by as well. I was worried that the film would end right after he finished boot camp. Boot camp had so many issues and struggles for him to get through, after what felt like a very detailed introduction,
and also a courtroom scare. It had so much going on, and we didn’t even get him over to Japan yet! That is the main crux of the film!

Because he has to do something in order for his story to be told. They advertise he is the only person to win a medal of honor without ever firing a weapon, so he must have saved his entire division somehow in very difficult conditions. As to how difficult and what he did, well, that is what the movie is going to show. But the things he went through are basically awe inspiring to anyone who would watch, even knowing there must be some level of fib being told.

And yes, the main character is Christian. That is an extremely vital part of the film: his faith and his beliefs. We are told them again and again, but it never gets hokey, it never gets annoying. It feels real and earnest without rubbing it in our faces. This is what a Christian film should like. Something where someone’s actions speak louder than words without hearing Jesus every minute. It has been straight up probably decades since we have had an actual great movie with a strong Christian focus, and that is the most incredible fact about this film.

Desmond Doss is an amazing American hero, and Mel Gibson gave him an amazing movie for us to remember him with.

4 out of 4.

Unfinished Business

When Unfinished Business hit theaters, it committed Seppuku on itself almost immediately? Why? Well, it is a comedy, and it has some famous people in it, AND it was released in theaters, it just didn’t do any screenings for anyone.

I can understand why a movie like Step Up: All In might not do screeners. It is for a very specific group or audience, who will see it, critics be damned. And if you aren’t into dancing, you won’t like it.

I can see why a low budget indie movie with no famous people would also hold no screeners. They are art house films and want awards, not money. (This is a lie, everyone wants money).

But what is supposed to be an A-Level comedy? They are saying they have literally no confidence in this movie at all and are just releasing it while hoping no one will really notice. It is not a good thing to know going into a film and really makes you wonder how bad it could be before you even see anything.

BEER
I mean, it has Vince Vaughn and beer, how could this not appeal to the majority of Americans at this point?

Dan Trunkman (Vince Vaughn), before having an unfortunate name, is also about to leave his work. He is in sales, selling things, but the what is not important. He feels like he is getting screwed out of his pay check, because his boss, Chuck Portnoy (Sienna Miller) (what the fuck is that name?) wants to renegotiate how much he is getting for a new sale. So he decides to walk out. And much like Jerry Maguire, he was left basically alone and sad.

Wait, there are two people with him! Timothy McWinters (Tom Wilkinson), who has a mandatory age of retirement or something, but doesn’t really want to stop working, and Mike Pancake (Dave Franco), someone who was applying for a job but is willing to work for Dan! Yeah! They will start their own business selling…things!

A year later, life sucks. They aren’t doing great, they don’t have an office. Dan has troubles at home. His son (Britton Sear) is getting bullied, his girl (Ella Anderson) is needing him to work on a project about his unsuccessful life, and his wife (June Diane Raphael) wants to put the boy in private school, but Dan can’t talk about their financial woes.

Either way, they finally are going to close on a deal. Just need to shake hands with a Jim (James Marsden) and they will have money to fix all the things! Well, then there is fucking Chuck, suddenly in the races and they have a lot more work to do. And also Nick Frost is hanging out.

They just have to do the things to maybe get the deal! The things! The things!

tard
Pancake is probably one of the greatest last names in movie history.

You know, this is probably 2013’s fault. In that year we had The Internship (which I actually liked) and Delivery Man (a scene for scene remake of a French Canadian film), both of which basically bombed and were groaned at by critics. All with Vince at the helm! Since then he had nothing in 2014, a cameo in Anchorman 2, and that is it. Literally, a string of bad movies might have killed his career. After all, this movie began its shoots in October 2013, and a year later had to do reshoots. I guess the studio really did have no faith at all. Nor did the public, giving this the lowest grossing film opening of his career.

And it is sad to say that all of it is entirely warranted. This is a comedy in the sense that occasionally an amusing scene may happen. In no way does it ever give the minute after minute of laughter that you are hoping for with this movie. No, and it doesn’t help that this film has entirely too many serious moments in it, serious moments that don’t end up affecting the viewer on an emotional level. The movie isn’t just stale, but the entire time you are watching you are waiting to figure out just what the point of the whole film is.

The drama, the plot, the comedy, the acting for the most part is all terrible in this film. The pacing is all over the place and it honestly feels like everyone is super passive. Vaughn’s character is passive, the bad guys are passive. 90 minutes of people standing around and talking about doing great things, and of course, not.

The only reason I am giving it the 1 and not a 0 is, surprisingly, Dave Franco. He basically plays someone who is literally retarded. It was very strange and yet, it was very different for little Franco. His character was able to bring a smile to my face through his simplicity and his discoveries through this film journey. If we could have a spin-off movie of him traveling the world, that would be ideal.

The good news for Vince is that he is about to star in True Detective season 2. He is hoping to have some sort of Vaughn-Respawn for his career, just like the recent McConaissance.

1 out of 4.

Delivery Man

I have failed the movie going public tonight.

Tonight I have seen Delivery Man, but I did not watch Starbuck, the foreign movie that this one is based on. It isn’t super foreign, because it is set in Canada, but it is the French part of Canada. Plus, the director and writer of Starbuck made this version too! Really, it is just some strange re-imaging with a star in the US that people might want to go see.

Vaughn
Well, they might have wanted to see five years ago.
David (Vince Vaughn) is a piece of shit. It sounds harsh, but he really is. The movie makes sure you know that early on, by showing him rack up parking tickets, fail at his job delivering meat, disappoint his family, disappoint his girlfriend, and get turned down for loan applications. He owes some thugs about 80,000, and no way to pay it back.

And there was a screw up a fertility clinic about 20ish years ago. David donated sperm over 600 times in a few years, under the name of Starbuck, and because of its high quality, it was given to and successfully birthed 533 children. Over 100 of them are suing the company and David to determine his identity, believing their right to know their biological father is far more important to his right to privacy. Huh.

Who wants to be known as the guy with 500 kids? Especially when his girlfriend (Cobie Smulders) is pregnant and can’t imagine him ever being a father.

Basically his life is falling apart and he has no idea how to fix it. Maybe he can fix the lives of others? Despite his best interests, and the wishes of his lawyer (Chris Pratt), he decides to check out the profiles of a child, just one at a time, and see if he can help out their life in any way while remaining anonymous.

Clearly a plan that won’t backfire.

His immediate family includes his father (Andrzej Blumenfeld), and two brothers (Simon DelaneyBobby Moynihan) and some of his children are played by Jack ReynorDave Patten, and Britt Robertson.

Robes
Really, if all you want is Chris Pratt in bath robes, then this is the movie for you.
From what the internet tells me, this is actually a scene for scene remake of Starbuck, so I don’t feel too bad not getting to watch the original before this one. The last time I attempted to do something like that was when I watched both Death At A Funerals back to back, and that was just awkward.

Speaking of awkward, that is this movie in a nutshell. It touches on a lot of personal and serious topics, but generally in a strange way given the circumstances of this film. I find it hard to categorize it as a comedy, because although the idea is silly, the jokes are really few and far in between and it gets really dramatic. If you go in expecting a laugh a minute, you will be disappointed.

Vince Vaughn plays a screw up who has his heart in the right place. The reason that sounds familiar is that he always plays those roles, because he is somewhat believable at them. I am not sure how to describe the emotions I felt during this movie, but I can tell you they were there.

I think the movie did far too much disservice early on by making me hate the main character. It was vague on a few important details, like just who was after him for money and why they were surprisingly passive over 7-9 months. The passage of time was very hard to follow, when months would pass for his character without letting the viewer know. Certain problems ended up getting solved too easily and David had a surprising amount of money to give to use for his kids, and gas, and shopping when he owed so much cash in the first place.

I can’t say for certain if this film will stick with me in the long run, but for now it is a decent attempt at trying something new (well, a remake of something new), and I can applaud it for that. It also does a good job of teaching about the potential horrors of sperm bank.

2 out of 4.

The Internship

When you first heard about The Internship, you thought one of three things:

“Oh great, a movie where the jokes are only at the expense of nerds and old people trying to be hip!”

“Oh great, a giant advertisement movie for Google!”

“Oh great, an Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn movie trying to recapture the magic that happened with Wedding Crashers in 2005!”

Well, to be fair, I think all of these ended up being true.

HP
Because why the fuck not, they also play some quidditch.

Billy (Vaughn) and Nick (Wilson) are a great team and have been for decades. They sell watches and they have personality. Sales have been down this year, and they find out in the middle of a potential big sale that their company has folded. Great, what are two unskilled salesmen to do with the economy like it is?

Well, get a job at Google, of course! Or at least an interview, for an internship, that could lead to a job. While not being extremely qualified candidates, they are able to smooth talk their way into the intern process, because not every applicant should be a perfect nerd 20-something with no actual life experience.

Needless to say, they are not popular amongst the other applicants. Only one team of interns will be guaranteed to receive jobs by the end of the summer and when it comes time to pick teams, they are stuck with the other nerds who weren’t picked (Tiya SicarTobit RaphaelDylan O’Brien) and the newest and most nervous group manager (Josh Brener, who you may remember last summer in this Samsung Galaxy S3 commercial before movies).

As expected, this turns into a group of ragtag individuals, trying to work together to overcome the odds and become the top team by summers end. Along the way, Nick has to try and woo a higher up Google employee (Rose Byrne), Billy has to overcome his inability succeed, and they all have to figure out ways to beat the supergroup made by Graham Hawtrey (Max Minghella), and also convince the head of the interns (Aasif Mandvi) that they aren’t complete losers.

A comedy like this of course has a lot of cameos, including Will FerrellRob Riggle, and Josh Gad.

Noogle
Heh…heh…heh…Noogle.
I know the entire idea of this movie probably is a turn off to a lot of you. It looks formulaic, almost like a 1990s comedy (Another aspect of the film that I cannot defend). But it also has something else that is hard to value that really turns it into a decent movie. It has heart.

Wilson and Vaughn have amazing chemistry together, which is a fact we already knew. But it is amplified so well into this film! The dialogue is just so great, the two are able to make the entire thing still feel real and natural.

The Internship is not the funniest film of the year, no where close, but reports say that I giggled pretty consistently throughout it. The film accurately also showed the pressures that college graduates face today, where they can be perfect their entire life and still have trouble/stress once they hit the real world.

I did hate a few of the “speeches” by the end of the film, when they were announcing the winners. I think they cheapened the results by going about them that way, and could have easily been more clever about it. I’d say The Internship is worth checking out, but only if you are want a feel good story and if it is a matinee.

3 out of 4.

Into The Wild

Recently I asked my two labs what their favorite movies were. I asked everyone, about 37 students in all, and I was happy to say I had seen every single one of them already.

Except for one.

Into The Wild. I had heard of it mentioned before, but never seen it. Well, I couldn’t let my record stay at only one away, so I set off to see it immediately. Didn’t hurt that it fell in my 2007+ range of reviewable movies!

Geo
Hey uhh, that’s some nice geology you, uhh, got going on there.

Chris McCandless (Emile Hirsch) is not like normal boys. No, he is a free spirit, a guy who just hates the grind towards success in life, and he only just graduated college. Well, after he is finally living alone, he says fuck it. I don’t want to do this shit. I want to go out and live on the land, enjoy life for what it is and become one with nature. Damn it.

And that begins his two year journey, with the goal of moving up to the Alaskan wilderness to live on his own. But that isn’t his only goal. He also kayaks down the Colorado River all the way to Mexico, works a few odd jobs, and gets in trouble with the law. His parents (Marcia Gay Harden and William Hurt) are distraught, as their boy seemingly fell off the face of the earth. He has no intention of being found either. His sister (Jena Malone) seems to understand why he did it all, but doesn’t mean she is fine with it either.

Oh, but he isn’t alone on this journey. He meets many people along the way, with different stories, theories and stations in life, and many free spirits. (These people include Brian H. Dierker, Catherine Keener, Vince Vaughn, Hal Holbrook, Kristen Stewart, and Zach Galifianakis).

Birds
No. You will ONLY get artsy looking pictures in this review, damn it.

Oh here is another fun fact. This movie was directed by Sean Penn. That fact wasn’t fun for you? My bad. But maybe mildly interesting.

This is the only movie I have seen directed by Mr. Penn, and let me a tell ya. It was pretty intense. I am kind of disappointed no one told me to watch this movie earlier, because it is such a great (and true-ish) story!

I am not the kind of guy who will ever give up things to go and discover myself. I like things, I like that they are a part of myself. Hooray capitalism and what not. If I didn’t like things, I wouldn’t have so many movies. But even I felt attached to Chris during his story. Full of ups and downs he discovered the truth about his life and did what he loved most in the world.

The movie is over 2 hours long and I didn’t notice it at all. I don’t think I have seen Emile Hirsch in any other movies, but I think his acting was just so tremendous in this movie, I am going to have to see more. The next will probably be Speed Racer, where he is the titular role, that way I can have a lesser opinion of him. Or something.

Into the Wild is definitely an overlooked movie from about 5-6 years ago, and should be a must watch for some time to come.

4 out of 4.

The Watch

The Watch had a lot of negative press surrounding it. Unfortunately its first previews started to appear right before the Trayvon Martin shooting down in Florida. Which was done of course by someone on a Neighborhood Watch patrol. Bad timing indeed!

But really this has very little to do with the plot of the movie. Because this movie is dick jokes and aliens.

Mouth face
Lets count how many dicks and aliens you see in this scene.

Evan (Ben Stiller) is a normal middle aged man living in Suburbia in Ohio. He founds a lot of clubs and cares for his community. But bad things happen. Very bad things. Like the security guard at Cotsco, HIS STORE, was brutally murdered and had his skin shaved off. Pretty damn gross. He realizes the cops in the town are pretty incompetent. There are only eight, and the main two hate him (Will Forte and Mel Rodriguez). Plus they think he is a suspect, since he had the ability to get into the store!

Well damn. So Evan founds the Neighborhood Watch while his wife (Rosemarie DeWitt) is away for a weekend, but interest is limited. He gets Bob (Vince Vaughn) a rich man who loves capitalism, but has to raise his daughter (Erin Moriarty) mostly alone because his wife travels for business, and really just wants some nice man friends. There is also Franklin (Jonah Hill) who now lives with his mom, wanted to be a cop, but failed all the tests, including the mental one. And Jamarcus (Richard Ayoade) who also really wants to just hang out/fit in after a divorce, and has an Asian fetish.

This rag tag group of people are forced to do mundane things, until…Evan hits something with his car. And it has green slime! And there is a weird ball that explodes whatever they point it at, assuming they actually finger all the holes. Turns out it is Alien technology, and they might be dealing with a giant alien invasion in their small town Ohio!

I’m sure the creepy skin talking neighbor (Doug Jones) has nothing to do with it. Also Nicholas Braun is in this movie, as guy trying to get with Bob’s daughter. So you know he is going to get fucked up as well. And why does Evan not want to have sex with his own wife? Damn it, Evan.

Steam
Oh, so he lets out his steam another way? Do go on.

DICK JOKES. Dick jokes on dick jokes on dick jokes.

Honestly, I’d say that 85% of the humor in this movie was about the male genetalia. It just kept coming up, and came quite frequently. The other 15% would be spread out between some racial/ethnic humor, bromance, and then miscellaneous. But wow.

I didn’t think the plot was that bad. But a movie needs to penalized if it strikes the same funny chord as its go to mechanic. Thankfully the dick jokes were actually, mostly, well connected. But at the same time, it got quite annoying.

Vaughn played a character he always does, and Stiller basically the same. I would say Ayoade and Hill brought something different, since at least with Ayoade he hasn’t really been in an American film yet, and Hill got to play a pretty psychotic military character.

So sure, a bit disappointing, but thankfully it wasn’t complete trash.

2 out of 4.

The Dilemma

I have been told that a Dilemma is having to make a choice between two equally bad scenarios. A dilemma is not just having to make a bad choice or ignore it. My friend wanted me to make that clear for all the readers, but I will leave it up to you to decide if there is any real dilemma then.

But in other news, I have been avoiding this movie because it features prominently the Chicago Blackhawks, as they are in Chicago and fans of the team.

blackhawks
Statistically, they were not fans of them six years ago though.

Vince Vaughn and Kevin James are best friends, have been since college. James is very smart, knows all he can about numbers and statistics, and cars. Vaughn is a great talker, speech maker, and can make any sale. Together the have at dream. To make electric cars less lame, and more reminiscent of the muscle cars of the 50s and 60s. Feel that vroom in your acceleration, while also not damaging the environment. They are in the middle of making a real prototype, and if they succeed, they get a long term contract, with long term benefits. Needless to say, this is a very stressful time.

James is also married to Winona Ryder, together for almost 20 years, while Vaughn is just dating Jennifer Connelly. He wants to propose, but he has a hard time getting to that point. He also used to be addicted to gambling, which has damaged his relationships in the past, including this one a few years prior.

But when Vaughn catches Ryder having an affair with a very tattoo’d Channing Tatum? He initially wants to tell his friend right away, but he is already at a highly stressed point and if anything else happens he thinks he might explode. So instead he confronts Ryder to tell him, but apparently he also once slept with her in college (pre the dating, but still) and never told James. So she is prepared to tell James that the affair was actually with Vaughn, and he has been stalking her for 20 years, trying to get more.

Well thats weird. So Vaughn needs proof first of her affair, and then he can tell his friend! But with his sneaking around, everyone thinks he is gambling again, both men having lots of trouble working for the contract, and even James and Connelly have their own secrets! (No, not another affair). Oh, and Queen Latifah is in this movie too, if only to say things to make everyone feel uncomfortable, like “lady wood”.

Tatum
Shit gets real.

Remember when I said shit gets real? That is because this movie changes its idea of comedy throughout. It is marketed as a buddy slapstick comedy, and involving cheating women. This certainly happens in the beginning, but a large portion of the movie is much closer on the darker comedy level. Then some more slapstick stuff. I think it would have been much better if it stuck to one (preferably the darker route) than back and forth. My mood kept changing, and it felt weird.

But also a lot of the sillier stuff I didn’t find to be that funny. There is a long scene at a club where Vaughn refuses to dance with his woman, because he doesn’t dance. But then does a large silly dance with James instead. Talk about bad dating material.

I thought it was severely lacking in the humor department overall, but a weirder thing happened while watching. I cared about the characters. What?

2 out of 4.