Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Sex Tape

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. These reviews are not meant to be statements of facts or endorsements, I am just sharing my opinions and my perspective when watching the film and is not meant to reflect how these films should be viewed. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 0-5. 0, of course, being unwatchable. 1, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being great and 5, being epic! And if you enjoy these reviews feel free to share them and follow the blog or follow me on Twitter (@RevRonster) for links to my reviews and the occasional live-Tweet session of the movie I'm watching! The comedy that Apple fanboys won't admit isn't funny.





Sex Tape – 2 out of 5

Boy, sex tapes have become such a staple of society that we are now having hack comedies made about them!  Kids nowadays have no idea what it was like to steal your father’s porn collection in order to see videographic evidence of two people (or three or more) getting their fuck on.  Why would they?  Now they can just look them up online or just film their own, for crying out loud…and if you’re famous, you can have it leaked in order to be more famous (in the case of Paris Hilton, I use the word “famous” very liberally).
The face you make when you find out that Fred Durst and Screech both released sex tapes.
 

When going to college, Annie (Cameron Diaz) and Jay (Jason Segel) were all about carnal knowledge.  They had sex all the time.  However, as they got older and marriage and children arrived in the picture, sexy time became less and less frequent.  One day, when Annie got the good news that a company is looking to purchase her blog (that happens?!?), she decides to celebrate sexually with Jay.  The kids are with the grandparents and they have the house to themselves.  Sadly, the spark appears to be gone…until Annie suggests they make a sex tape.  With vigor and raging hormones, the two get down to the nasty.  When the love explosion is done and reached its climax, Annie makes a simple request to have the tape deleted…the only problem is that Jay accidentally synched it to the cloud and is now on the iPads of numerous friends, family, and the potential buyer of Annie’s blog (seriously, companies buy blogs?!?).  Now, it’s up to them and a shenanigans-filled adventure to collect the iPads back and erase all existence of their wild sexcapades.
Do people really have sex under the covers?
 

The trailer for this film didn’t do a very good job at hiding the fact this film was a by-the-numbers slapstick-esque wannabe vulgar comedy.  There’s really nothing original going on with Sex Tape.  Whether it be the truly awful jokes about modern technology or the recycled “man dealing with guard dog” bit that was seemingly lifted from another Cameron Diaz film or the fact that with all the bad tech gags, the film really is just a giant add for Apple products—all of this just adds up to an hour and a half act that felt like it was daring me to turn off the DVD.
A child's birthday party...an almost required locale in any adult comedy.
 
Remember when Rob Lowe had a sex tape in the 80s?
Comedy is subjective—I get that.  In fact, all forms of entertainment are.  I’m not trying to say that Sex Tape isn’t funny as a fact, I’m just saying I didn’t find it funny in the least.  Actually, that is somewhat inaccurate.  While I spent most of the film in utter silence as I watch gag after gag fall flat for me, I did find myself chuckling at the antics of a coke-fueled scene involving Rob Lowe.  It was a viciously short sequence but it was one that I found genuinely hilarious and was floating in a sea of mediocre and overly familiar jokes and gags.

Okay...Jack Black's cameo was funny, too.


One of the things that didn’t make this comedy work—even on an average level—was the fact that Jason Segel and Cameron Diaz had no chemistry as a couple and, when alone, looked out of place.  I like Jason Segel but he looked like he was only giving a small percentage of effort with his character—and he helped write the damn screenplay, so what does that say?  While some moments he appears to be giving his all to the film, there were way too many sequences that looked like he just didn’t give a shit and it ends up fouling up a lot of jokes and makes his character look very disinterested in most of the activities going on around him.  Kinda hard to invest in a comedy when one of your leads looks bored with the product.
This was the most interested I could find from Segel in this one.
 

On the flip side, I’ve never been a fan of Cameron Diaz.  That was already a hurdle I was going to have to jump over with this film.  Aside from the fact that her eyes scare me and make her look dead, soulless, and demon-like (seriously, those are some hollow eyes she has), I’ve never found her to be that convincing of an actress or someone with great comedic timing—which is strange since she is in so many comedies.  As usual, I didn’t see her really successfully executing any of the humor in the film and the failures are only compounded by the fact that the production is trying really hard to make her character look vulgar by having her curse like a sailor but Diaz just doesn’t look convincing doing it.  Every time she dropped a fuck-bomb, it looks uncomfortably unconvincing.  She looked like she wasn’t being the character I thought her character was suppose to be and written as but ended up looking more like Diaz was inserting something into the character that she thought would make the character look cooler—but, in turn, just made the character look fake.
She looks dead inside while posting on her blog...so, in that case, she really
nailed that defining element of her character.

Just like how the production really wants Cameron Diaz’s character to be a somewhat vulgar individual (they really overdo pushing this as they have her say the word “erection” at least a dozen times in the opening sequence), the entire story in general wants you to believe that the film is a vulgar affair…too bad it won’t actually have the guts to go through with it.  Sure, it throws in a few swears here and there and we have to some nudity but, in the end, it’s not masking that the film is a mock-vulgar comedy.  It's like Diet Vulgar.  It's pretending to be vulgar but lacks all the calories and taste of actual vulgarity.  In reality, the film is just a slapstick affair that looks like it took all its jokes and sequences from other, better films.
I love Rob Corddry but he attaches himself to some really generic comedies a lot.
 
Even the premise itself doesn’t feel like it belongs and is pretty unconvincing.  In fact, the premise feels very forced.  The entire idea of making a sex tape sorta comes out of nowhere—sure, Annie and Jay are talking about how they used to watch porn together and there’s a really half-assed bit about how porn’s stories aren't as good as they used to be but the idea for making the sex tape comes literally out of nowhere when Annie walks into the kitchen holding an iPad and just says, “Hey, let’s film ourselves.”  She should've just said, “Well, let’s get this obvious bit of conflict and whole point to this film underway.”
Nat Faxon shows up in the movie for a short and completely pointless scene...
I kid you not, the only reason his scene existed was for some dick pic jokes.

However, all of this is moot because the film ends up feeling more like a hour and a half long commercial for Apple products hidden within a shitty, wannabe vulgar comedy.  Seriously, drink every time they say the word “iPad” and fill yourself with anger and self-loathing as you pretend that Apple received dump truck loads of money every time it is said.
"Boy, honey, I tell you these iPads sure take great video.  Those guys at Apple
really know how to create a quality product with these iPads.  iPads, iPads, iPads..."
 

Sex Tape, in the end, is just a creative black hole of emptiness and cliché comedy bits.  It gets even worse when they try to tack on a sappy moral to the film and all this really does is point a flashing neon sign towards the fact I wasted my time with this one.

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