TATM Classics #146: This Is The End & The Three Stooges

tatmclassics

THIS IS THE END **** (2013)

This Is The End, the apocalyptic comedy starring Seth Rogen, James Franco, Jay Baruchel, Jonah Hill, Danny McBride, Craig Robinson, and a whole lot of celebrities.

The sextet play themselves as the world comes to an end as a party at James Franco’s house is taking place killing other celebrities including Rihanna, Michael Cera, Jason Segel, Kevin Hart, Aziz Ansari and many others in the process.

Now, the main six have to face off against demons and other mystical creatures that are out to kill them as the apocalypse happens.

In a summer when a lot of the big blockbusters start off great but then just fall apart in the third act, I am happy to report that all is not lost and this and another movie we’ll get to here not only not do that but they also are the most fun I’ve had all summer.

This Is The End is fucking spectacular and is one of the funniest most original comedies that I’ve seen since Ted.

Rogen and his crew all work off each other so well, and they should since they’ve been friends in real life for awhile, it makes you wonder why Adam Sandler and his crew can’t bring that to the Grown Ups movies. By the way, Grown Ups 2 looks like shit.

You also have to wonder if this is how these guys would react if the apocalypse actually did happen. Which they probably would.

The comedy is pretty good, there’s a lot of great self-referential jokes at the actors themselves and it doesn’t feel forced or thrown in just for the hell of it, it feels very genuine.

Not only does the comedy works but the creature designs and the makeup on this is impressive. When you see the creatures in this movie, they look so realistic, except for the big demon at the end which looks like it was made with a computer but at the same time, it didn’t take me out of the film.

Not to mention, for a movie that only cost $30 million to make, I really couldn’t tell, it felt like they spent more on it.

This Is The End does everything that last year’s The Watch failed to do, make a high concept comedy with impressive visuals and good solid laughs. Not only does This Is The End succeed in that but it’s also one of the best-written and laugh-out-loud comedies in a while.

Not to mention, it’s the best movie I’ve seen all summer so far because it doesn’t cop out in the third act and take me out of the film. Iron Man 3 did that, Star Trek Into Darkness did that, Man Of Steel did that, This Is The End doesn’t do that.

THE THREE STOOGES **** (2012)

Left on the doorstep of an orphanage run by nuns, newborns Moe, Larry and Curly grow up finger-poking, nyuk-nyuk-nyuking and woo-woo-wooing their way to uncharted levels of knuckleheaded misadventure. Now their childhood home may have to close due to financial difficulties. But Larry, Curly and Moe, employed as the foster home’s inept maintenance men, are determined to come to the rescue. Only The Three Stooges could become embroiled in an oddball murder plot – while stumbling into starring roles in a phenomenally successful TV reality show.

I’m not that huge of a fan of The Three Stooges, I do like them but I don’t watch them on a consistent basis like most stooge fans are.

That being said, I’ve been very interested in this project ever since I heard the Farrely Brothers have been trying their damndest to get it made. It took them almost 20 years to get this made and they’ve had some strange names attached for roles, the strangest being Jim Carrey as Curley.

I was looking forward to this…until I saw the first trailer and I thought, “Oh, no.” I hated that first trailer and was loathing the film at that point. It wasn’t until just a few weeks ago that I suddenly came around again, the second trailer they put out was actually really funny and the commercials were very funny, so after I hated that first trailer, I was back to being really excited for this.

So does the film live up to my expectations? Not only that but it was much better than I thought it would be.

The thing that really does sell the film are the Stooges, they look like and act like the original three actors and they all do a very good job at it. Chris Diamantopoulous is Moe, Sean Hayes is Larry, and Will Sasso is Curly and they all do incredible jobs in the roles and easily sell the film and make it funny.

I really did like the approach that the Farrely Brothers took. Instead of a full feature length story, they do three half-hour segments that all connect with the main plot, it felt like I was watching three Three Stooges episodes back-to-back.

Another great thing about the movie is that they did probably one of the best modernizations of classic characters I’ve seen. They’ve put the Stooges in our world but they don’t move away from what we know the Stooges for. They don’t pull the shit that they pulled with The Smurfs, Alvin & The Chipmunks, or Transformers. They do kind of the same thing they did with The Muppets, the characters are the same way they were back in the day but they are in a modern world.

The one scene in the first trailer that made me hate the trailer, the scene where Moe is hanging out with the Jersey Shore, is actually funny when it’s done in the movie and the way that whole subplot plays out is so cleverly done and I never would’ve seen it coming at all.

There are two controversies going on with the film and that’s with the Catholic League. They don’t like Larry David’s portrayal of Sister Mary Mengele or Kate Upton’s nunkini that’s in the first trailer.

Personally, I don’t see a problem with either one of these. Larry David was very funny in the movie and the league’s biggest problem is that his character’s name is a nod to the nazi, Josef Mengele. Ok, so what?

The other thing, which I kind of agreed with them on at first, was that in the first trailer, there’s a scene where Sports Illustrated model Kate Upton is wearing a nunkini. When I first saw that, I was offended too. But in the movie, the scene in the trailer is not in there. She’s wearing the suit in the film but it’s in the background, there’s even about a 2 second shot where they show it in full but at the same time, the suit is not filling up the whole shot.

So, on the latter argument, I can kind of see their point but at the same time, the suit’s only on screen for about 4 seconds so you would have to look really close to see it. I didn’t see a big problem with that nor did I see a big problem with Larry David’s character’s name.

The biggest flaw I had with the movie itself is that the first 10 minutes weren’t all that great. I really didn’t like the kid actors playing the three stooges, I felt that they were trying way too hard playing those characters.

Other than that, I really laughed a lot during The Three Stooges. I think it’s the best movie the Farrely Brothers have done since Fever Pitch. The film’s not a perfect movie but it was so much better than what I was expecting.

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