My good friends at Netflix delivered two movies which had received great notices so I looked forward to just sitting back and being mightily entertained. And even though neither movie was as consistently knee-slapping hilarious as had often been reported both provided some cathartic laughter.
Superbad is both crudely raunchy and sincerely sweet…the young actors (Michael Cera and Jonah Hill) at the center of the story are consistently amusing with an easy rapport (that they are too profane by half is a personal quibble…I’m not adverse to swearing but the sheer amount of profanity in the movie is more tiresome than funny after awhile.) Scenes are consistently stolen by Christopher Mintz-Plasse, who makes his film debut as the nerd-tastic “McLovin”, and Bill Hader and Seth Rogen as the world’s most irresponsible cops.
Superbad, for all of its seeming preoccupation with sex and drinking and partying, is at its heart a story of the bond between two friends on the brink of adulthood and that reveals a tender heart underneath the crass shenanigans of the movie.
Hot Fuzz, on the other hand, has no such tender heart but it is briskly funny in an acerbic way…presenting the story of straight-laced, ultra-effective supercop (Simon Pegg) who was “promoted” from the London police department to a seemingly bucolic village…at least until the final reel when the spoof of American action movies (with pointed, affectionate references to Bad Boys 2 and Point Break and sly winks to other films such as Chinatown) becomes what it was spoofing, an over-the-top, violent action cartoon shoot-‘em-up (if this was supposed to be ironic, the irony was lost on me…it just got louder and sillier as the climax rolled on…and on...and on…)
Neither of these movies would be on my list of all-time favorite comedies but both had just enough laughs to make me smile and when it came to curing some Christmas blues that was just what the doctor ordered :-)