When one thinks of Seth Rogen/James Franco-headlined comedies, one normally doesn’t think of international controversy. The new comedy The Interview has been under the microscope in recent months, not because it is clever and ridiculously funny but because it’s premise is one that has offended and caused some much heated debate. The film focuses on North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and two American journalists sent to the Supreme Leader’s home country to assassinate him. It is a simple film with lots of laughs but the subject matter isn’t for all tastes especially with Sony Pictures Entertainment (the studio responsible for releasing the film) falling victim to a recent internet hack. North Korea denied involvement with the hack and the film was released to smaller art house theaters to avoid further problems such as a potential terrorist attack.
In recent years, the comedic entity known as the Frat Pack has suffered something of a decline. Will Ferrell and his band of misfits enjoyed a good decade or so of sophomoric antics and juvenile adventures. Things for this group of clowns basically came to a halt when the hugely successful The Hangover started cloning itself with its sequels. With those films, the world was exposed to a new member of the pack, Mr. Zack Galifianakis, a hairy hobbit-like gentleman with a unique and highly unpredictable brand of humor. His latest comedy Are You Here pairs him up with veteran Frat Packer Owen Wilson. Throw in an awkward performance from funny girl Amy Poehler and you’d think you’d have all the ingredients necessary for a winning chuckle-fest. Sadly, the results here are lackluster at best.