Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Sitter Belongs in The Shitter

     A few months ago, I made the mistake of receiving director David Gordon Green's first comedy of this year, Your Highness, in the mail. I ran to the mailbox in a state of joy, invited some friends over, and popped the Blu Ray into my PS3, hoping to experience hilarity ensuing in a similar fashion to Green's perfect comedy, Pineapple Express. James Franco and Kenny Powers himself couldn't let me down, right? Wrong. Your Highness was total dog shit. The type of dog shit that gets into the treads of your shoe and then gets transferred and smeared into your carpet and no matter how hard you try, you can't get the stench out of the room. Then you accidentally get up in the middle of the night to use the restroom and remnants get squished beneath your foot and get lodged underneath your big-toe nail. Terrible, to say the least. Now comes along Green's second comedy of the year, The Sitter, starring pube-head Jonah Hill (still morbidly obese at this time) as a babysitter who goes on an adventure involving drugs, sex and racial stereotypes. Fortunately, The Sitter doesn't reach the depths of a toilet bowl after a Chipotle cornitas-and-corn-burrito-fueled dinner, but it still reeks of any average turd.
     The plot is simple and super predictable: Hill, feeling bad that his single mom has to miss a date because she can't find a babysitter, decides to look after three kids for a night to be nice and maybe earn some Brownie Points at home. He's a sit on the couch "do what I say or I'll kill you" kind of babysitter, if you haven't seen the trailer (which contains the best parts of the movie). The kids and Hill end up leaving the house and going on an adventure, since the girl Hill has been seeing in a cunnilingus-only relationship calls and realizes she wants to take their relationship to next level: sex. She also wants an 8-ball of Coke, a perfect plot device to get Hill and the children into some hairy situations. I said hairy not hilarity, and hilarity most definitely does not ensue.
    The children in the film are not really at fault, but they don't add much to the picture either; they're rarely very funny. Blithe, the young one, is a girl who dresses up in slutty clothing and recites vulgar rap lyrics. You can picture her singing Katy Perry songs, even if she's not mature enough to realize that the song is about binge drinking and fucking strangers. Slater has anxiety problems and is on a myriad of medications, which I assume is the films not-so-subtle stab at parents over-medicating their children. He's the one that eventually comes to a realization about his young life, with the help of Hill's babysitter (like he would be extremely insightful about life lessons). Rodrigo is the token adopted Hispanic, the trouble maker, the one who puts cherry bombs into toilets and watches them explode. So we follow Hill and the kids on the search for sex, drugs and rock & roll. Not much really happens--surely nothing that can be considered laughable--but luckily the film's 82 minute run time is short enough to not have to suffer too terribly.
     These types of movies are growing tiresome; no, I'm not talking about raunchy comedies that throw every vulgarity in the book at you faster than Deadwood. I'm talking about boring comedies that are not funny and are, above everything else, lazy. Nothing here is original, and situations get thrown at the characters that don't make much sense. The scenes that do follow a logical plot line are too predictable to enjoy. Recently, Jonah Hill shed a huge percentage of his body weight to get healthier, live longer, and--I can only assume--try and land a beautiful girl. Here's hoping the shedding of the fat will help him regain some laughs.     (D+)

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