Zack and Miri Make a Porno

Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
INSTAGRAM
RSS

Elizabeth and Seth Make a Bad Movie

Starring: Seth Rogan, Elizabeth Banks

By Robert Patrick

Before he passed away in June of ‘07, Joel Siegel found himself offended beyond his wildest dreams. While attending an advance screening of Kevin Smith’s Clerks II, the mustachioed Good Morning America critic shouted at the screen in outrage. “First movie I’ve ever walked out on in 30 [expletive] years,” he belted out, making sure everyone acknowledged how boiled over he was at the lack of philanthropy in Smith’s raunchy opus. The scene in question – a donkey show during the latter half of the movie – turned the typically congenial critic into a limb flailing, rebel rouser. Taking Siegel’s previous outburst into account, I’m sure he would’ve been even less impressed if he had gotten the opportunity to review Smith’s newest film, Zack and Miri Make a Porno. A movie where, for reasons too taboo to mention here, a grown woman defecates on a man’s face.

Smith, known for his sometimes verbose wit, dunks our heads into the more perverse side of his humor. Zack and Miri Make a Porno attempts to assimilate a love story into a movie about masturbation jokes and elongated sequences of nudity. If Smith’s traditionally unrefined anatomy gags don’t sit well with you, I offer you an official warning in advance.

Zack (Seth Rogan) and Miri (Elizabeth Banks) are two twenty-somethings who, without enough economic provisions to buy them the barest of essentials, end up without electricity in their home. Because they work at a local coffee shop, the two best pals are scraping by on their inequitable wages. When the duo’s water is cut off, they both decide that the most advantageous thing to do would be to film a porno. I probably would’ve cracked open the job section in the newspaper myself, but that’s beside the point.

Zack and Miri, both deciding that the first step in making their adult film should be to recruit actors and actresses, hire a motley crew of strippers and malnourished panhandlers. But, as one would have it, when Zack and Miri film their sex scene, they inadvertently fall in love with each other. Subplot achieved.

The jokes in this movie range from unfunny to excessively unfunny. There is a time, early in the film, where Zack listens to a conversation about oral sex. There is nothing necessarily funny being said, yet the exchange lasts for what seems like twenty-five minutes. The story – neither amusing or clever – leads me to believe Smith is in it for the shock value. But unless you are seven years-old, you wont be hearing anything that you haven’t heard before – and if you are, in fact, seven years-old, the MPAA probably wont grant you admission into the theatre anyway. I apologize to both parties in this situation; neither one of you benefited from this comedy.

The biggest problem in Zack and Miri, aside from the lack of humor, is the running time. I would’ve liked to see, I think, a documentary where Kevin Smith defends his decision to make this film 102 minutes long.

When watching Smith’s movie, you sense that the usual cavalcade of serendipitous dialogue isn’t really there. Smith’s typical offerings of malaise and vulgarity is spattered in each frame, but the effective sincerity, so becoming of director’s earliest works, is lost beneath the careless muck-slinging of Rogan and Banks.

Overall, Zack and Miri probably isn’t the best picture in Kevin Smith’s catalog, but it is less iniquitous than Jersey Girl. And, if you use that kind of thinking, you really haven’t been assailed that badly.

2/5

Follow by Email
Facebook
Facebook
INSTAGRAM
RSS

Author: Tom Bevis

Tom Bevis is a ne'er-do-well residing in Southern California where he frequently neglects the variable San Diego climate to spend hours pondering over his PS4 collection struggling to decide what to play. He has recently taken over as lead writer of the indie comic Feral Boy and Gilgamesh, the back catalog of which you can read at feralboyandgilgamesh.com. He also hates writing about himself in the third person.

Share This Post On

Leave a Reply

Like Cinema Spartan? Help spread the word by sharing with your friends!