Thursday 20 October 2016

Film Review: Keeping Up with the Joneses

Forget trying to keep up with the Joneses - just avoid them like the damn plague.

Karen (Isla Fisher) and Jeff Gaffney (Zach Galifianakis) are two white bread middle-class suburbanites who find themselves at an emotional and sexual impasse when they ship their two kids off to summer camp. Bored with their mundane existence in the burbs, something suspicious starts to go down in their cul-de-sac when Natalie (Gal Gadot) and Tim Jones (Jon Hamm) move in across the street.

Successful, suave and stupendously sexy, the new arrivals begin to make waves in the neighbourhood - but Karen and Jeff suspect that there is more to the ravishing duo than first meets the eye. As it turns out, Natalie and Tim are spies lurking undercover - and now Karen and Jeff are caught up in their latest conspiracy.

At first glance, Keeping Up with the Joneses looks like a fun time at the movies. You've got a cool premise, a decent cast and the director of riotous and risqué comedies like Superbad. The ingredients are all there ready to get mixed together into a goofy screwball spy comedy akin to Mr and Mrs Smith.

Alas, that isn't the case. Like, not even a little bit. Keeping Up with the Joneses is essentially a really longwinded SNL parody that isn't just hideously unfunny - it's achingly boring too. My eyelids were drooping about an hour into this film - and it was a matinee session.

The script can be broken into two action set pieces (a car chase and a shootout) with all manner of boring crap filling the void in between. There are no twists or surprises. The conclusion just arrives, practically without incident or excitement. The pacing is awful, the dialogue is uninspired and the direction is lazy.

And the cast? Wasted. Poor Jon Hamm! Going from Mad Men to this is like leaving your dream job and being forced to wait tables. Fisher showcases some amusing physical comedy (the one positive I can wring from the film) whilst Galifianakis doesn't illicit a single chuckle. Gadot is oversexualised, wearing nothing but lingerie in one lengthy scene just so something of relative interest can be sprinkled into the marketing material.

The Verdict: 2/10

Honestly, what the fuck is going on with this film. It's not like the director and the cast don't have talent. The verdict boils down to this - just don't. Seriously, don't even entertain the possibility of seeing this film. It's just bad on every conceivable level. It's just a really bad film. I can't make it simpler than that.

Keeping Up with the Joneses is in cinemas across Australia now


  1. GAWD - thank you for taking one for the team here and confirming my suspicions. This has been marketed like crazy in the UK, and every time I have to endure that trailer I feel more hopeless. I'll be skipping this one!
    - Allie

  2. I have such a thing for Fisher, I'm doing all I can to avoid seeing this one in cinemas.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...