Last week, a British gossip author went viral with a tweet evaluating Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s allegedly schlubby boyfriend Riley Roberts to a “bin raccoon.” In an unimaginable stroke of serendipity, it sped world wide inspiring parody memes the identical day as Long Shot was launched, a comedy starring Charlize Theron as a presidential candidate and Seth Rogen as her unlikely, Seth Rogen-esque boyfriend.
You’d suppose it might’ve made for good viral advertising. Instead Long Shot underperformed, and looking back, you marvel if the pile-on helped promote the movie or uncovered its deadly flaw. We could marvel on the Rogen-esque man getting the lady, however ought to we root for it?
Long Shot is directed by Jonathan Levine, whose work I’ve loved up to now (50/50 and The Night Of particularly didn’t get almost sufficient credit score), humorous with out feeling pressured, and heartfelt with out feeling saccharine. In Long Shot you may nonetheless sense his aptitude for tonal stability, however this story lacks the highs and lows: it retains threatening to be humorous or poignant however by no means fairly achieves both. The dominant impression is of a gaggle of gifted individuals, and particularly a standout Charlize Theron, working their asses off in service of an idea that, in some elementary means, doesn’t actually work.
Rogen performs Fred Flarskey (a kind of overly-quirky character names that’s typically a pink flag in the identical means that comedians who appear like they’ve labored laborious on a unusual look hardly ever have humorous materials) a author at an alt-weekly who speaks reality to energy in his personal idiosyncratic means, in items like “The Two Party System Can Suck A Dick (Two Dicks, Actually)” and “FUCK EXXON.” The first scene sees Flarskey infiltrating a gathering of neo-Nazis, who uncover that he’s a spy simply as they’re about to complete his swastika tattoo. He jumps out a two-story window to flee, crashing down on high of a automotive — cue that sped-up CGI slapstick that audiences from Neighbors to Daddy’s Home have been supposed to search out so hilarious. I’d like to see each that and the inevitable “character gets too high” sequence that’s in each Rogen film (together with this one) take their place within the comedy graveyard, alongside anchovies on pizza jokes and celebration animals sporting lampshades on their heads.
The movie additionally appears to have transposed snarky blogger and gonzo reporter, contributing to Flarskey’s convoluted character growth. People constantly deal with him as if he’s some slacker schlub, as if he didn’t simply threat his life to take some Nazis down a peg then bounce out a window like Jason Statham.
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