R, 1 hr. 38 min. Directed By: Seth Gordon. Release Date: Jul 8, 2011 Wide. DVD Release Date: Oct 11, 2011.
I knew it. When I wrote about The Change-Up in July, I said that I’d chosen to see the wrong Jason Bateman movie that summer. I friggin’ knew it. If you have any further questions about Jason Bateman comedies, THIS is the one to see. There’s no question about it. Every once in a while, I get a real gift in my mailbox as part of my weekly Netflix shipment, and this was one of the best gifts I’d gotten in a long time. Add to it that this was part of the same shipment that brought me Super 8, and I had a pretty good couple of days.
This was a ridiculously funny movie, particularly once you consider how ludicrous it was. They took Strangers on a Train, which I personally think is a fantastic Hitchcock movie, and gave it a twist to the silly, and somehow it worked. In many ways, I found this to be more effective in its efforts than its inspiration.
There isn’t much I didn’t find completely effective. The cast is spot on, and some of them (notably Jennifer Aniston and Kevin Spacey) play parts that are well outside the norm. I can't remember the last time I saw a comedy with this caliber cast done this well. I really dug Aniston as kind of a comedic antagonist, and I certainly dug Spacey as a crazed antagonist. The rest of the cast had some decent timing and the chemistry was really good. The cast was probably what took this from being a stupidly done mashing of the Master’s work and made it worth watching.
So… basically, this is a great way to kill 90 minutes. The movie’s funny, without being over the top. The cast is good and they put forward enjoyable, if not amazing performances. I dig some of the plot devices, like the OnStar representative, since he not only plays a major role in driving the movie, he’s crazy funny (if stereotypical). The time flew, and I actually missed an appointment because I lost track of time. I’d actually like to have one of these horrible bosses… particularly Jennifer Aniston, but hey, that’s just me.