R.I.P Comedy Movies (Op-Ed)


For many of us sitting down to a good comedy is a great way to unwind and have some fun. Sadly it seems like the days of catching a truly funny comedic movie are over. Over the past 30 years there have been some really talented comedic actors. Everyone ranging from Steve Martin, to Chevy Chase, legends of the 1980’s ranging from the legendary physical comedy of Chris Farley, to the more serious Phil Hartman, brought a real talent and craft to the art of comedy movies. Unfortunately as of this weekend i have finally decided that the genre of Comedy films is totally dead. How did I come to this realization. It was by the process of watching horrible comedy after horrible comedy that has been released in 2014. And trust me I am using the turn ‘Comedy’ loosely when describing these films.

The year started out with the sequel to Anchorman. If you saw Anchorman 1 you thought that was a nice movie, not iconic, but pretty funny. But unfortunately Anchorman 2 jumped the shark literally, when by the end we were watching Will Ferrell sexually harass a shark. That movie was followed up by such other films as, ‘A Million Ways To Die In the West‘, ‘Tammy‘, ‘Bad Words‘, and ‘Neighbors‘ . It seems like like Hollywood has developed a new formula for all comedy movies, and this is how it goes. First, all of these movies have about 4-5 good jokes, all of which you will have seen at least 50 times before you see the actual movie, because they will be revealed in the trailer. Second, you need to have a scruffy guy, who drops ‘F’ Bombs every third word, leading to a movie filled with less than intelligent dialogue. Examples would be actors like Seth Rogan, Seth MacFarlane, and sadly even Jason Bateman. The third ingredient in the new comedy movie formula is excessive drug use. The lead character needs to use Pot as many times as possible in the movie, and when not using it reference it in supposedly funny ways. The fourth ingredient is gratuitous sex, nudity, gross sexual situations that are far more more disgusting than funny, and graphic nudity. We are not talking about a random butt anymore but multiple scenes of topless women. At one point during the film, ‘Neighbors’ Seth Rogan is ‘Milking’ his breast feeding wife with his bare hands and the scene goes on for probably 3-4 minutes. Not only was it disgusting, it wasn’t funny. So to summarize, to make a comedy in 2014 you need 5 good jokes for the trailer to get people out to see the movie, you need a ton of pot smoking, gross overboard sexual content, and tons of ‘F’ bombs as a substitute for intelligent dialogue. As you can see Comedic movies are dead. At least as long as Hollywood continues down this path.

In the past Comedic movies were based around, real physical comedy. Actors had a real talent for delivering funny situations not contriving them. A lead role was about being able to deliver multiple funny lines, and take lines that were not originally intended to funny and make them funny. There was a plot, real dialogue, real life situations that drew on peoples real emotions. It took a level of intelligence to create a film, and for the viewer to get what the movie was doing.

I guess Hollywood thinks that we are all mindless idiots who will keep shelling out money to see moronic nonsense, that in the end is not remotely funny.

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