Running Length: 85 minutes
MPAA Classification: PG-13 for crude and sexual humor, language, and some comic violence.
Cast: Kal Penn, Jayma Mays, Adam Campbell, Faune Chambers, Jennifer Coolidge, Darrell Hammond, Fred Willard, Crispin Glover
Directors: Jason Friedberg, Aaron Seltzer
Producer: Paul Schiff
Screenplay: Jason Friedberg, Aaron Seltzer
Watching Epic Movie is a lot like having someone repeatedly hit you over the head with a frying pan whilst telling the same unfunny joke over and over and over again. Calling it a ‘movie’ would be a gross exaggeration; it’s more or less a series of crude, overlong skits strung together by a repertoire of gags that work less than zero percent of the time. Seriously, you’d find more entertainment value in a colonoscopy.
For the most part, parodies stopped being funny after the release of Scary Movie in 2000, which wasn’t a great movie, but there were enough laughs in it to satisfy the average movie-goer, and in the end, it got the job done. Since then, there have been nothing but misfires, and a majority of them – if not all of them – have come from the trashy film making duo of Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer. Epic Movie may just be their worst outing to date.
The plot is comprised of events from a multitude of films, but the two most notable are Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Our heroes (if they can be called that) are Lucy (Jayma Mays), Edward (Kal Penn), Susan (Faune Chambers), and Peter (Adam Campbell), who all happen across “golden tickets” inviting them to Willy’s Chocolate Factory. Upon their arrival, they realize that not a whole lot is right about the mysterious factory – (it deals with a certain ‘special ingredient’, if that’s of any help) – and the four end up escaping by means of a wardrobe, which leads them to Gnarnia. (Oh my God, do you get it? It’s a silent ‘G’! Haha!) There, the White Bitch (Haha!) is threatening to take over all of the land, and it’s up to the four of them to help the innocent fight back.
To be as blunt as possible, Epic Movie is a malefic, contemptible piece of garbage that’s an attack on all five of the senses and a kick in the balls. If there’s anything worse than an unfunny comedy, it’s an unfunny comedy that thinks it’s hilarious, and this is a perfect example. It’s absolutely shocking how consistently unfunny this thing is. Joke after joke misses, and though a large part of it may be due to the fact that the actors are horrendous, the majority of it stems from Friedberg and Seltzer’s lack of talent.
Besides the fact that it’s disgusting, despicable, and overtly laugh-free, my biggest problem with Epic Movie is the reason for its conception. The sole reason that it exists is to inflict upon its audience as much crudeness and raunchiness that its PG-13 rating will allow. That’s it. The goal here is not to provide a worthwhile movie-going experience, but rather an experience that will leave you sprinting towards the nearest shower and/or confessional after it’s over. There is not an inch of talent in front or behind the camera, and that’s still not even the most horrific part. How a studio saw anything in this is absolutely beyond me, so, for those of you that would like to know, Epic Movie was financed and distributed by Regency Enterprises. I’ll repeat that name again. Regency Enterprises.
There is such thing as a ‘watchable’ dumb movie, but Epic Movie threatens to cause brain damage. Friedberg and Seltzer, I hope the measly amount of money you make from these ventures is worth having the rest of the world despise you.
|Final rating: no stars (out of ★★★★)|
© 2011 Stephen Earnest