Tuesday, 28 October 2014

One Page on Comedy

I'm pissed.

I just came out of the cinema after watching "The Inbetweeners 2". Two weeks ago, I watched "Think like a man too". Both of these movies claim to be comedies. They do have all the stuff that makes a comedy too, I suppose. The Inbetweeners features four pathetic losers looking for sex. Sounds a bit harsh, but I can't put it any other way. It's American Pie with Brits in Australia. It's also complete and utter shit. "Think like a man too" is somehow even worse, a Vegas comedy that features Kevin Hart, a token white couple and no jokes.

Comedy these days has become the laziest genre in Hollywood. Even worse than Horror, which is already terrible. These days, filming a comedy means either having someone like Kevin Hart do a stand-up routine in front of a rolling camera or lightly editing a bunch of people improvising. There is actually going to be a rerelease for "Anchorman 2", same movie, completely different jokes.

That doesn't necessaryly have to be bad. "Anchorman" has a cast full of funny people, there is no denying that. If it works, it works. But sadly, most of the time it doesn't, and even then, it's still lazy. Yes, Kevin Hart may be a funny guy, but seeing him in a movie reminds me of Chris Rock. He's rather funny in the movies he's in, but in the end, it's just an extrapolation of his on-stage persona, which is a million times funnier. To make a really funny movie, you need more than a funny actor.

You need a funny director, a funny screenwriter, a funny soundguy, a funny props department. In every other genre it seems to be understood that a movie is more than just the person on-screen. Most comedies these days forget that.

Now I don't expect every director to be Edgar Wright, who is the best comedy director these days, by far. But you don't need to be an expert in framing, the use of music or witty match-cuts. Just show a little bit more creativity.

There are still some people out there that make good comedies, and luckily they have great success doing it, so I'm not giving up on the genre. Phil Lord and Chris Miller, the Coen brothers, recently Martin Scorsese and arguably Quentin Tarantino all know how to amuse an audience with more than just a string of bad jokes.

At this point I could list some of those ways, but someone else, who knows much more about movies than I do, has already done it better, so here's a link: Every Frame A Painting

Remember when we had movies like "Airplane!", "The Naked Gun" or "Top Secret!"? You might think these movies are pretty funny, but dated and kind of stupid... I know I used to do that. But then again, have you seen Scary Movie? You could go for the movies that actually tries to be inventive,
Compare this to this and tell me which is funnier.

So yeah, I'm done with boring comedies. The whole idea of the genre is to entertain, and if your movie can't manage that, then you should consider a different line of work Tim Story. And I know that tastes are different, but quality stays the same.

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