movie film review | chris tookey

Movie 43

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  Movie 43 Review
Tookey's Rating
1 /10
Average Rating
2.15 /10
Hugh Jackman , Anna Faris , Dennis Quaid
Full Cast >

Directed by: Brett Ratner , Elizabeth Banks , Steven Brill , Steve Carr , Rusty Cundieff , James Duffy , Griffin Dunne , Peter Farrelly , Patrik Forsberg , James Gunn , Bob Odenkirk , Jonathan van Tulleken
Written by: Steve Baker , Will Carlough , Jacob Fleisher , Patrik Forsberg , Matt Portenoy (as Matthew Alec Portenoy) , Greg Pritikin , Rocky Russo , Jeremy Sosenko , Elizabeth Wright Shapiro

Released: 2013
Origin: US
Colour: C
Length: 97

Kentucky fried turkey.
Reviewed by Chris Tookey

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You want juvenile, gross-out humour? Smutty language? Moronic profanity? I have just the movie for you, made over four years – and here are just a few of the stars: Hugh Jackman, Kate Winslet, Emma Stone, Halle Berry, Uma Thurman, Liev Schreiber, Naomi Watts.

Admittedly, Gerard Butler, Johnny Knoxville and Josh Duhamel are in it too; but with a cast this strong, how bad could it be?

The answer is: this could be the saddest, most pathetic film of 2013, and possibly any year, though I would need to re-see Freddy Got Fingered, Sex Lives of the Potato Men and the entire oeuvre of Adam Sandler before I could be completely certain. One American critic has hailed Movie 43 as “the Citizen Kane of awful”. That is no exaggeration.

It’s a clumsily assembled collection of the world’s least funny sketches, based on the most tasteless ideas anyone could dream up. The genius who put this together is Peter Farrelly, though eleven other directors are involved, all old enough to know better.

Their track record alone should be enough to warn you off. Steve Carr directed Daddy Day Care and Paul Blart: Mall Cop. Steven Brill made Little Nicky and Mr Deeds. Farrelly’s own recent pictures have included the execrable Hall Pass. All those pictures have attracted one of my coveted turkeys, but it’s fair to say that Movie 43 contains their very worst work.

The American framing device had an insane screenwriter (Dennis Quaid) pitching comedy ideas to an understandably frightened movie executive (Greg Kinnear).

The UK version begins with three teenage boys on the internet, trying to track down “the most dangerous film in the world”, a video nasty called Movie 43. It’s even less funny.

In both versions, the sketches start off with Hugh Jackman (who until this fiasco was in with a chance of Best Actor at the Oscars) attempting to chat up Kate Winslet with testicles dangling from his neck. The sketch is so boring and overlong that I found myself looking at my watch within five minutes of the film starting.

Miraculously, the picture manages to go downhill from there. Racist, homophobic, misogynistic, child-molesting, incest, sexually transmitted disease and poo jokes abound, not one of them amusing. You come out, feeling unclean and shocked – not so much at the content, as the fact that one Hollywood star agreed to be in this, let alone dozens.

Halle Berry famously blamed her agent for making her play Catwoman. She has only herself to blame for being in something infinitely more humiliating. I had to look away during the scene where she uses the turkey baster.

In a movie that’s all low points, possibly the most embarrassing scene is one where two idiots (Seann William Scott and Johnny Knoxville, typecast) kidnap a foul-mouthed leprechaun (Gerard Butler) for his crock of gold. The sketch is a crock of a quite different material, since there are no jokes, only profanities, and Butler makes just as bad a job of an Irish accent as he normally does of an American one.

After Playing For Keeps, many people were wondering if Mr Butler could sink any lower. It’s official. He has now crashed through the bottom of the barrel and is burrowing through the slime beneath.
But maybe the worst bit is the sight of Elizabeth Banks being urinated on by a cat. Or Anna Faris asking her boyfriend to defecate on her. Or a young girl (Chloe Grace Moretz, pictured) being cruelly ridiculed for her first period. It’s a tough call.

On both sides of the Atlantic, the film has been dumped on an unsuspecting public without advance screenings for critics. Now you know why.

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