Wednesday, July 24, 2013

If I Only Had A Brain (Movie Review: Identity Thief/21 And Over)

Over the weekend, I saw two movies, via Netflix that I normally wouldn't have, and I should really just trust m instincts. You know how, in the middle of watching a movie, you ask yourself, "why am I wasting my time on this," well, that's how I felt watching both these movies.  First was "Identity Thief," which was a hit over the Spring. It stars Melissa McCarthy, and cemented her as a box-office draw. I have an irrational dislike of Ms. McCarthy. I am sure she is a fine woman, but there's just something in her humour that just doesn't sit well with me. I cringe whenever people say she is this generation's Roseanne. The only thing they have in common is that they are both female comediennes who are heavier. Roseanne had more intelligence in her comedy, and come to think of it, never used her weight for slapstick, as McCarthy does. I know she had an attention calling role in "Bridesmaids," and she tries to replicate that in her other roles, which she does here. And it doesn't help that she has such an unsympathetic role in here. I kind of feel bad for Jason Bateman, his disdain for this movie shows in his face. Does he really need money that badly to have accepted this role?

In "21 and Over," the one I feel bad for is Skylar Astin, an actor I admired when I first saw him on Broadway in "Spring Awakening."  He also starred in last year's "Pitch Perfect" and was quite good in that movie, even showing his vocal chops there. I understand why he thought it would be a good move to follow up that movie with this, as this was written by the writers of the "Hangover" series. "21 & Over" tries to imitate that, this time lowering the age demographic. I tried hard to keep up with this, and it wasn't as unbearable as "Identity Thief," to be honest. It's kind of stupid, but not in a winking, ironic way as, say the Harold & Kumar series.  I also don't see the appeal of Miles Teller, who people say is the next best thing. Between the two movies, I grudgingly prefer this, but that is not meant as a recommendation. 

Isn't it funny how, on Netflix, you would go see movies you normally would not spend a cent on in the cinemas. More baffling, there are other choices but I still go with these two. 

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