Wednesday, 3 December 2014

60 Second Film Reviews (Adults Only Edition)

Quick movie reviews, without the waffle. 60 Second Film Reviews is a regular feature where I compile together brief reviews of recent films I've watched at home or at the movies - and generally couldn't be arsed didn't find time to write a proper review for. 

This month, we have a special 'adults only' edition - reviews for Sex Tape, Horrible Bosses and Spring Breakers

Sex Tape (2014)

Sex Tape is a comedy film starring Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel - it sees a couple struggling to keep a lid on the fact they made a sex tape of them trying to rekindle their marriage after the video gets uploaded to the cloud for all to see.

Beyond that however, Sex Tape also works as a really elongated Apple advert, with the main premise of the plot revolving around retrieving the numerous iPad's they've given out - "man, the construction on these things is incredible!" is a legit line Segel spews at one point. The bemusing part is, the film is made by Sony - so, why aren't they all using Xperia's?

Anyway, moving on. Unfortunately for Sex Tape the film is simply not as funny, or as naughty as it seems to think it is. A lot of the jokes fall flat, and the adultness is reigned in.

Let me give you an example of why this film isn't really that funny. There is literally a scene where Jason Segel yells "wake up, you fuckin' cocksucker!" at an unconscious dog. He then asks Siri how to revive the dog, and it wakes up, bites him on the face and Segel runs away shouting "what the fuck is happening?!"

I couldn't have put it better myself Jason. I couldn't have put it better myself.

That being said, I don't feel as though I completely wasted my time with this movie. The lead duo are likeable enough (especially Cameron), and the supporting cast (Lowe, Corddry) are also good. If only the risque premise had been more wholeheartedly committed to, rather than trying to pass things off as a more straight-laced rom-com in the final half hour.

I give Sex Tape: 4/10

Horrible Bosses (2011)

Horrible Bosses is an R-rated comedy from a few years back - it stars Jason Bateman, Charlie Day and Jason Sudekis as three guys who feel victimised and bullied by their evil bosses - and plan to have them killed.

Things inevitably spiral out of control as these three losers find themselves out of their depths and struggling to keep a lid on their limp murderous ambitions.

The real joy of Horrible Bosses is watching a trio of great actors - Kevin Spacey, Jennifer Aniston and Colin Farrell - have a lot of fun with the hilariously adult script. Aniston in particular shines as Julia, a borderline nymphomaniac who'll stop at nothing to have sex with her already engaged employee, Dale (Charlie Day). One scene where Aniston shows off a series of staged photos of her 'making out' with Dale whilst he's unconscious is brilliant stuff.

The star-studded cast is a big selling point of this riotous comedy - alongside the sextet already mentioned are guys like Jamie Foxx, Ioan Gruffudd, Donald Sutherland and Julie Bowen. Foxx's character - a contract-killer by the name of Motherfucker Jones - is particularly good, and it's good to see his role has been expanded for the recent sequel.

At 90 minutes, it's your usually brisk comedy that doesn't dawdle when getting down to business - and thankfully, there isn't a lot of excess fat near the end of the film either, and the whole film feels well-paced and concise. It's not great (and doesn't warrant a sequel), but I liked it for what it was.

I give Horrible Bosses: 7.5/10

Spring Breakers (2013)

Spring Breakers. Was there a more divisive film from 2013? Just one glimpse at Rotten Tomatoes tells you what you need to know - 65% from critics, 39% of audiences liked it. IMDB tells a similar story - 5.3/10 from users.

After viewing the film (I wasn't going to, but hey - 99c Movie of the Week iTunes rental, so why not?), it's not hard to see why. The film aims to be provocative and illicit a strong reaction from its audience from the very first scene - a topless beach party set to Skrillex's 'Bangarang' that contains more boobs than four whole seasons of Game of Thrones. Talk about starting as you mean to go on.

The film - which stars Vanessa Hudgens, Selena Gomez, Ashley Benson and Rachel Korine as four college girls who are determined to make the most of 'spring break' - didn't really do anything for me. Sure, it's brash and colourful, packing a visual punch that makes you sit up and take notice, but that aside Spring Breakers is just vulgar and kinda boring.

After the frenetic first 45-minutes, there is a good 20 minutes where the plot slows right down to a crawl, switching focus to James Franco's rapper character Allen and his lifestyle. He's an interesting character, one that Franco immerses himself in, but this whole segment just screams 'tangent!' and I don't think the film really handled the transition well.

Plus, it comes off the back of Selena Gomez's character departing the film (that's kinda a spoiler, but whatever) and she's the best thing about this film.

So, my final verdict is annoyingly middle-of-the-road for anyone hoping this film would illicit an extreme response one way or the other. It's a good film, there's no doubt about that - but is it a misunderstood classic? A Zeitgeist-capturing, definitive text that has a lot to say about youth, money, fame and infamy? Nah, don't make me laugh. In my opinion, The Bling Ring does that job a lot better than Spring Breakers.

I give Spring Breakers: 4.5/10


  1. I did not like Spring Breakers like most of our fellow bloggers did. I wanted to, really I did. But I just couldn't find anything other than the neon lights to like about it.

    That's even with my massive girl crush on Ashley Benson!

    1. Fair point Brittani! I'm not sure what all the fuss was about either!

  2. Yeah, Horrible Bosses was okay, but definitely don't understand why it got a sequel (and don't exactly intend to go out of my way to see it, either :P). Spring Breakers was one I was able to appreciate more in hindsight than while actually viewing it, though. It really annoyed the hell out of me while watching it with its slow pace and constantly repeating editing style, but it's a movie that works far better in reflection. Don't exactly plan to actually revisit that one either, mind you! XD Nice stuff, Rhys. :)

    1. Thanks Chris :) It takes a really special kind of comedy to warrant a sequel - Horrible Bosses just isn't the special, and the title is also really generic and bleh. Maybe I'll watch it when it hits DVD, but the trailers just make it look like a big retread of the first film.



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