Review: ‘Date Movie’

Looting the key scenes and plot points of hit movies is the bread and butter of spoof comedies, but the script for Date Movie is about as funny as dry white toast.

Julia Jones (Alyson Hannigan) is your “typical” storybook overweight single girl who dreams of meeting her Prince Charming while working in her family’s Greek/Indian/Jewish diner. Enlisting the help of a modern-day matchmaker named Hitch (Tony Cox), Julia gets pimped out in ways you’ll never see on “Extreme Makeover” and is unleashed onto the world new and improved. After she meets her soul mate, a man named Grant Fockyerdoder (Adam Campbell), Julia will have to endure meeting his family, her family getting along with his family, and a rival ex-lover named Andy.

The first question that comes to mind is, what twisted sinister individuals thought that more than ten percent of this film was funny? Amusing? Made you smile in any way? Like Scary Movie 3, Date Movie feels like what would have been a fun idea if it wasn’t so obvious where all the jokes were going. Worse yet, when all the jokes fall flat, the filmmakers chose to insert the most vile thing they could thing of, as if they want their audience to yell, “Okay, fine! Bring back the bad jokes! We can’t take anymore flatulence!”

One of the few people in this production who seems aware of the horrid material is funnyman Eddie Griffin, but his relaxed approach to the script (well, every script he does) seems counterproductive to the rest of the cast screaming what some writer though would be funny if it was louder and faster. Watching the film is like driving through the suburbs: boring plot point, unload a cliche sight gag, follow that up with a gross-out gag, and repeat as necessary. You can almost hear George Lucas screaming, “Faster! More energy! It’ll be funny if if it’s faster and has more energy!”

If you watched the trailer for this film, you’ve already seen all the funny stuff that sucked you into the theater, but you’ll still have to wait through all the dreck to see it again in context. Feel sorry for all the actors and actresses sucked into this production and the black marks tarnishing their film reputations as a result. It’s one thing to make a comedy which turns out to be terrible, but it’s entirely another when the studio invests more money than the production budget to promote such a turkey.

(a half skull recommendation out of four)

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