Friday, January 02, 2015

The Interview

         James Franco and Seth Rogan have great chemistry in this sophomoric comedy that doesn't warrant all the attention it has been getting. The premise of the CIA involving a TV journalist and his producer in an assassination plot to kill Kim Jong-un is a clever one but also an easy target to set off the North Korean government.

          Kim Jong-un is portrayed as such a buffoon that it's easy to see why North Korea  would become incensed by the movie.  We can only guess what kind of man he really is but Mr. Rogan's script, written with partner Evan Goldberg, really goes over the top. I give credit for the actor Randall Park to have the courage to play the part. Lizzy Kaplan also shows a bit of courage, slumming from her fine work in Showtimes's "Masters of Sex" to co-star as the CIA handler overseeing the assassination attempt.

           And speaking of over the top, Mr. Franco's character Dave  Skylark sets a new standard. He is actually very funny until his shtick gets old. His repartee, however, with Mr. Rogan as his straight man, is hilarious. The first half of the film had me laughing out loud much of the time.  The second half drags however, until an obligatory action finale.  

             Much of the dialog and visual gags are very low brow and raunchy. There are some very funny sequences, however, buried in what amounts to one long joke. If you were a fan of "Pineapple Express", or "This is the End", this film is for you. If you plan on seeing it just to express your freedom to do so, good for you... just don't expect too much.

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