Billy Appleton here, again, as we head into our fifth weekend of summer. It's officially June, which means we should start seeing some worthwhile endevors...Right? This is the first weekend where we're not getting a sequel, a retread, or a reboot. Though we are getting a strange spin-off produced by Judd Apatow and starring Forgetting Sarah Marshall's Russell Brand as that film's infamous Aldous Snow. Get Him to the Greek sounds pleasant enough. It finds innocent youth Jonah Hill in charge of getting Snow's drug-fueled rock star persona to the Greek Theater in Los Angeles for a comeback showcase. Ah, how refreshing! A road trip comedy full of booze, bukaki, and bacchanalia. Wait, what's this? A strong emasculating emotional message about love, understanding of oneself, and putting your balls into your old lady's purse rests within the core of this mish-mash of penis and vomit jokes, tarnishing its good will?
It's nothing more than one of those "The More You Know" PSA type things? Oh. I see. I see.
Yes, you may be tricked into thinking that Get Him to the Greek is a no-holds-barred laughter without any redeeming qualities. That it harkens back to an era of 80s sex comedies. And you'd be given a pass for assuming that due to the trailers and TV spots bombarding us these past few days. If you've seen Judd Apatow's other films as both a director and a producer, you simply haven't been paying attention. The guy likes his melodrama mixed in heavily with his shtick. He's more Kramer vs. Kramer than he is Bachelor Party. Which is fine, if that's what you are seeking on this sun soaked, head-swell of a weekend.
Me, personally? I was going in for pure laughs. I didn't know I was going to be preached to ala Knocked Up and Funny People. I don't need a another dissertation on the woe-laden inner Id of the often misunderstood celebrity. I wanted a "fun" summer movie. Something, it seems, we're just not going to get. Once again, I turned to our community of Internet critics to get their word on Get Him to the Greek. As I have not seen the film yet. Apparently it doesn't quite suck, but it damn near does. Especially if you're looking to have a bit of guilty fun.
After reading some of these reviews, I think I will turn to this weekend's other offering Splice, which horror fans are loving to death. It might be dumb, but it sounds entertaining. Something that just doesn't seem to be a part of Get Him to the Greek's message-laden agenda.
Here is what the "community" is saying about Get Him to the Greek (and remember, you can read all of these reviews in full by clicking on the provided link):
"Maintaining narrative logic was not a primary goal. (The) plot is nonsensical. The mission (is) just a limp hanger for a series of stony, ostensibly unhinged set pieces. Greek's gags are too familiar to be funny. The songs play like 'Weird Al' Yankovic compositions. Its tired sexual politics suggest that masculinity is a sham. Traffics in a general fear of sex. (It) feels slopped together according to the Apatow Productions schematic, but its late-inning morality lacks organic purpose and rings false."
"Aldous gets a movie all his own and the result is, as you might expect, too much of a good thing. The character wears thin. The film has the choppy, quick-cut feel of a sitcom. Another in a list of comedies that are simply too long. I know the songs are supposed to be bad, but there's good bad (see This is Spinal Tap) and bad bad. Get Him to the Greek is not likely to have the word "favorite" associated with it any time soon."
"(Director Nicholas Stoller) quickly runs out of ideas in this repetitive road movie. He's basically got one idea and doesn't know what to do with it once he gets it off the ground. (Get Him to the Greek) quickly runs out of laughs because it has no third act - and barely has a second. Most of the funniest moments in this movie are in the commercials - and some of the funnier things in the commercials aren't even in the movie. What's up with that? (There is) no attempt to lend any kind of plausibility to the action. Neither (actor) is well-served by Stoller's slack script. It disappoints in the same way that last year's Funny People did: by being bloated and tepid."
"Ruins an entertaining character. It is disappointing to see an actor go so quickly from pleasant surprise to unwelcome annoyance simply because filmmakers don't know when to say when. Get Him to the Greek has Aldous Snow running his rather one-note personality into the ground remarkably quickly. (Jonah Hill) has boring relationship troubles with his med-student girlfriend. The efforts to create a Judd Apatow -esque combination of raunch and heart completely fail. False and contrived...The movie mostly runs in circles. After Get Him to the Greek, audiences will be happy never to see (Aldous Snow) again."
"Being part of the Judd Apatow (Producer) universe, it has a serious side. It is up to this Aldous to teach our boy Aaron a lesson about life, and vice versa. I didn't feel fully invested in Aaron. I didn't even like him very much. The crazy parts can get a little tedious at times, it is one joke that occasionally runs out of steam. It feels a bit like déjà vu. The second act dragged a bit too much."
"Segues from a satirical mash-up of This is Spinal Tap and The Hangover into a sentimental duet between Almost Famous and Funny People. Not quite infectious. It's sporadically amusing. This stuff is simply too gross. The movie goes mushy. Aim(ing) for warm and fuzzy, it ends up empty and offensive."
"Lacks Forgetting Sarah Marshalls' good-hearted charm. A little of (Aldous Snow) goes a long way. Get Him to the Greek is defiantly unpleasant, aggressive and gross. A ramshackle collection of increasingly outré wastrel set pieces, revolving around booze, vomit, narcotics and ladies of questionable moral standards. Get Him to the Greek reverts to third-act sentimentality, complete with pat speeches extolling the values of sobriety and monogamy. The women in the film are all dim-bulb, slatternly receptacles."
"This wildly uneven comedy doesn't travel very far. The stop-start R-rated excursion never achieves the propulsive traction and outrageous/endearing balance that made The Hangover such a smash this time last year. Despite the occasional onscreen appearance of a digital countdown clock, writer-director Stoller never seems to be in any hurry to move the characters and plot along. The larger laughs are provided by the supporting players. . Get Him to the Greek never really finds its comic bearings."