Friday, June 26, 2009

Year One

Jack Black is in another hilarious movie. He plays Zed who is a lazy and incompetent hunter. The movie begins in what appears to be about 40,000 years ago in North Africa. But after Zed escapes with Michael Cera who plays Oh, they meet some farmers so the time frame leaps forward to about 2500 years ago. Cera is from Superbad and he continues the same monotone voice but he is funny. I think the directors have a lot of credit with that though, since it is more of the situations he is in, rather than his own doing. Unlike Jim Carry who is funny in an empty room and no props.

Zed and Oh are not really friends but they communicate since they are both losers. I am surprised they are allowed to eat since they are totally unproductive. No way Zed would he that physically pathetic but it is a movie and that is part of the hilarity of the movie. June Raphael is Maya and is coveted by Zed. But Zed can not provide anything to her and is just innocently flattered of his overtures toward her. Oh is interested in Eema played by Juno Temple. She is cute and Cera plays the same role now he has in many movies. Hey, it is paying his bills and probably pretty lucrative for him. As long as someone is paying him to play the identical character, he should be smiling all the way to the bank. Oh does not have the guts to ask the girl out and he just screws it up with his dance routine. Zed and Oh take off for a long walk and come across the forbidden tree. No one is supposed to eat fruit from this tree. This plot is borrowed from Adam and Eve. Zed is feeling pretty rebellious and he eats one of the apples from the tree. One of the clan members witnessed this supreme violation. Oh and Zed are expelled from the clan.

This does not bother Zed that much since he wants to find out if the world gives way on the other side of the mountain. It does not. Oh and Zed meet up with Cain and Able. Cain murders Able in funny scene. It is made to be funny, it is not brutal at all if one can ignore the fact that someone was murdered. Oh and Zed leave this town and continue on their adventure. Cable leads them away and explains to them that they could be held accountable since they were right near him during the despicable act.

Zed has a chance to persuade a gorgeous lesbian to have some fun with him but he can not even manage this. If Zed was a company his stock would be a perpetual penny stock.

Oh and Zed become separated from Cain when they come to a trading post. This is when they recognized their former clan members have been taken against their well and are now slaves. Maya and Eema are linked by chains and ofcourse these two wandering baffoons aim to free them. They are not in a seemingly Roman controlled area so the time frame jumps forward by a couple of centuries.

Zed and Oh argue their way to a town called Sodom and Gomorrah. This is after they walk away from a town where the priest has vowed to circumcize them. This is after they stop Isaac from being sacrificed by his father. Christopher Mintz-Plasse is Isaac and he looks as ridiculous as his old acting ally Cera. Jack Black has taken Superbad to the distant past. This movie is hilarious. There are a few slow scenes but many others are creative and wildly entertaining. The movie is just rolling through many of the stories we know, or the ones you should know, but is not criticizing any of them nor trying to make any point. The movie is a comedy and not controversial at all.

Maya and Eema are both slaves and Oh and Zed continue to inform them and plead with them to hang in their. They will free them from their flight. Oh is so pathetic though, he is smart but only book smart. This type of strength is pathetic in most situations and he lacks the resolve to actually come through. Eema is a fool for even considering the notion that this soft boy will save her. This aspect is exhausting but the movie is funny so the viewer can roll along with it. Both these fragile souls would have died along time ago in this period of time.

Zed and Oh become part of the security force in this Roman controlled town and this is just hilarious. They have no military bearing and their about as disciplined as I am around a sitting pumpkin pie. They meet Oliver Platt who is the High Priest and he is a sick human being with strange indulgences. This town is paganistic with little moral fiber.

The gorgeous Olivia Wilde is Princess Inanna in this town. She has her sights on Zed because she believes he has courage. It is not courage it is stupidity that flows through him, he does not even recognize when he should bow. Zed talks and acts like he wants to meet a gorgeous woman and here he has the princess who is stunning and just ruins his chances. The only thing he is good at is consistently finding new ways to get him and Oh in massive trouble. Their lack of sense is funny and when they are in mortal danger, we can just laugh at these morons.

Zed and Oh are both outwitted and enter the town's sanctuary. An area that no one enters, it is supposedly holy. After they are captured, they are propped up to be stoned to death the following day. Zed actually displays some wit here and outsmarts the cheif law enforcement official by requesting only one person can hurl stones their way rather than the entire force of the town. Zed continues this prudence and the town rallies around him. Zed and Oh are then ordered into a lifelong occupation of servitude. Oh questions how this is better when Zed cheers with the crowd like a baffoon. But they are spared.

The following day the town is summoned for another sacrifice. There is an ongoing drought and the town's leaders believe sacrificing a female virgin is the answer to bring forth rain. Twisted fools. The King orders his daughter to be sacrificed. The gorgeous princess is appalled. He also orders Maya to be sacrificed as well I believe. Either way, Zed is motivated to put a stop to this madness. He causes a ruckus and a distraction which sparks a rebellion by knocking down the massive scaffolding that has been erected for a town beautification project. Zed ends up killing or defeating the town's enforcement officer Sargon played by Gone In 60 Second's Vinnie Jones. Zed saves the princess a fiery death and good riddance to the high priest. With the help of Oh, he ends up falling into the furnace of flames. The town cheers. Zed and Oh gain their freedom and perhaps this immoral town can raise their standards.

Zed and Maya embark to Egypt. Oh sticks around with Eema to begin a family and becomes the mayor of the town it seems. A happy ending devoid of the humor that led us up to this point.

This movie is short and the ending is terrible. Nacho Libre is superior. I am not sure what happened. It just fell off a cliff. I was hoping for them escaping this town and God reigning down fire and brimstone as this town is vanquished. Either way, the ending was totally hokey, completely unrealistic. The last 20 minutes seemed like it was edited and directed, written too, by a high school drama club. The first half had some parts that are worth talking about. But this movie does not approach the comedy and satisfaction that Hangover brought us.

If you see this movie instead of Transformers II you should be sacrificed.

I allocate this movie two stars.**

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