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Gavin Grades The Movies

Dinner for Schmucks

Some time in Hollywood there must have been a gathering of  talented comedic actors like Steve Carell (The Office, 40-Year-Old Virgin), Paul Rudd (Anchorman, I Love You, Man) and Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover, Youth in Revolt) who came together to do a script reading for Dinner for Schmucks.  But what's puzzling to me is that not even one of these guys got up and walked away from the table with any doubts that the script needed work or that it wasn't funny at all.  They should have.  Dinner for Schmucks is a remake of a French movie that achieved a level of cult status among fans of foreign cinema.  The French version, I've been told, is very funny and a "must have" among great comedies.  It must be a lot funnier in French because this American version is downright awful.  Even gifted director Jay Roach, who brought us the Austin Powers and Meet the Parents series, didn't do anything to make this project funny.  The premise of the movie is pretty good.  An ambitious corporate executive is invited to a dinner that his career aspirations hinge on.  The catch is he has to bring someone that is a complete moron so they can all laugh at that person and then compete to see who brought the most moronic.  I personally think the idea of that sounds like a good time, but you're not suppose too.  As an audience member, they're hoping that you have more moral fiber than most of us actually do and consider that premise disgusting and cruel.  Biggest problem of the film is that Carell's "schmuck" character is SUCH an insufferable, clueless a**hole, you can't WAIT for him to eviscerated at the dinner.  I didn't care that they were going to make fun of him since I watched him ruin Rudd's life in a series of very unfunny scenes for 90 minutes.  If you think I'm giving anything away about the ending, I'm not.  The movie is as predictable as a traffic light's progression from the opening scene to the end credits roll.  The only funny scene in the whole movie is the actual dinner but by then you're so detached from the movie you just want to run from the theater.  To explain where this movie goes wrong is almost an act of futility.  It was just a lousy idea that was executed with total mediocrity, which is really sad since I was looking forward to seeing Steve Carell and Paul Rudd together in a movie again since their other two were some of the funniest films I've ever seen.  (40-Year-Old Virgin and Anchorman if you're trying to figure out what those two are.)  Carell is too unlikeable and unbelievable to be funny and Rudd is too serious and bland to be funny.  Galifianakis isn't even funny playing a character that should steal the show.  It's like the entire film, minus a few seconds of funny lines, is lost in a translation from French to English and ends up being a movie for schmucks instead.  I'm still a fan of the cast and wish them better luck next time **cough cough Anchorman 2** Dinner for Schmucks (Rated PG-13) Gavin Grade: D+

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07/29/2010 6:50PM
Dinner for Schmucks
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07/29/2010 9:39PM
World Wide News Flash
End Online » Dinner for Schmucks... I found your entry interesting do I've added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)...
08/01/2010 1:54PM
I thought this movie would be bad. The previews gave me the feeling that they were trying to overdo everything.
08/10/2010 11:54AM
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