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Gavin Grades The Movies

Year One

There once was a time when would consider myself a huge Jack Black fan, but sadly that ship has not only sailed but it also sunk.  It's not that Black isn't funny, but it's that his specific style of humor is the same for every single movie he's in.  Michael Cera is also just like that.  Luckily I'm not over Michael Cera yet and he's funny enough in this movie to compensate for the moments where Black isn't.  The moments where neither are funny, (which are few) they're compensated by the amazing supporting cast that includes Hank Azaria, Oliver Platt and David Cross.  To call this movie another dumb summer comedy is an injustice.  If anything, this may be one of the smartest comedies I've seen in a while.  Sure there are dumb, gross-out jokes in it, but the overall concept is genius.  It's written and directed by comedy legend Harold Ramis (who also has a role in the film).  It has the feel of a comedy skit drawn out into a 90 minute movie that never once gets old.  The fact that it's also a historical comedy reminds me of and stands up to the likes of Mel Brooks' "History of the World Part I" and Monty Python's "Life of Brian."  Oh, and when I say "historical" don't think for a second that it's anywhere close to historically accurate.  But it's mostly a send up to biblical stories from the Old Testament, but never once really mocks them.   I personally thought that Oliver Platt steals the movie by playing a transgender priest who has the hots for Cera's character.  There is one scene in particular between them that had me laughing so hard that my eyes were tearing up.  This movie proves once again that Harold Ramis has the comedic know-how to allow his actors to improvise lines on a hilarious story he creates and executes it so well that it appealed to the theological and historical intellect and the fratboy jackass that lies in me.  He played two styles of comedy like that in "Caddyshack," in "Analyze This" (and "That") and in "Groundhog Day," and now he did it again with "Year One." Year One (Rated PG-13) Gavin Grade: A-


06/17/2009 1:49PM
Year One
Please Enter Your Comments Below
06/28/2009 12:34PM
Chris Temple
You gave this piece of crap an A?!?! Your taste in movies baffles me. This movie would be better suited as a 5 minute skit on SNL. Jack Black has yet to put out a funny movie in the past 6 years and Michael Cera got dragged down with him. This movie had its moments but not enough to get an A review... it should get a C- at best.
06/04/2011 10:27AM
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