Redbox Haul 2: Minions, Trainwreck and Spy
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So my previous weekend consisted largely of lazing about in my basement, watching DVDs from Redbox with friends. Therefore, I thought I would review a few of the flicks I watched during those beautiful, slothful days. And maybe you’ll feel compelled to check out some of these new DVD releases.
A truly despicable prequel, “Minions” is more of a cash-grab than a genuine film. Although loveable in the first two films of the “Despicable Me” franchise, the once-beloved minions that now star in their own movie quickly turn into unbearable, noisy, yellow tic-tacs (partially because of the ridiculous merchandising – minion twinkies, minion band-aids, sexy minion Halloween costumes). Merely a diversion for the kids, “Minions” may, on the other hand, encourage older audience members to launch a mass genocide upon the yellow noisemakers.
“Minions” employs a tiresome stream of gag humor and mindless mischief – exhausting for even the children I was watching with and consequently insulting the intelligence of even the youngest of viewers. Additionally, the one-dimensional characters that make up the film amount to nothing more than walking, blathering punchlines, thereby making viewers sick with longing for the depth of Gru and his bubbling threesome of kiddies.
At its best, “Minions” is a glorified commercial for “Minions” merch. At its worst, it’s a plague that has infected stores and the minds of children across our nation. Rather than a respectable movie, “Minions” is an absurd, cutesy, brightly-colored sugar rush of deafening madness with an obnoxious band of yellow nuisances that waddle about, jabbering nonsense.
In this pleasantly-surprising rom com, comedian Amy Schumer stars as a magazine writer enjoying a life free from monotonous romantic commitment until she begins falling in love with a source for her latest story – the charismatic sports doctor, Aaron Conners (Bill Hader).
For someone who is not even a fan of Schumer’s stand-up or of romantic comedies in general, “Trainwreck” was very surprisingly, uproariously funny. The film, continuously touting tastefully offensive and awkward humor supported by two strong lead actors, offers a crudeness that is oftentimes riveting, yet occasionally uncomfortable.
On the surface, “Trainwreck” is merely a laugh-out-loud comedy, packed with potty-mouth humor, but it gradually delves into modern-day sexual conventions and diplomacy as it reaches a more serious note near the end. The movie even seems to poke fun at the very genre that it is a part of. With its interesting central character, crude comedy, and complex undertones, “Trainwreck” proves itself a success, despite its predictable storyline and abidance to the conventional rom com formula.
Spy (2015): 5.5/10
In this effective comedic action film, Melissa McCarthy stars as a CIA analyst who leaves her desk job to become an undercover agent focused on infiltrating the world of arms dealings in order to protect against a national disaster.
McCarthy, another prominent female comedian that I cannot claim to be a fan of, offered yet another surprisingly strong comedy movie. Although prone to slight overacting, McCarthy expertly delivers punchlines and is backed up by a solid supporting cast. After her 2014 film disaster “Tammy,” “Spy” is McCarthy’s redemption and claim to respectable comedy.
Additionally, the film’s crude outrageousness and gags that are not unlike the style of “Trainwreck” overlays the script’s interesting commentary on the gender roles cemented in the spy movie genre. However, “Spy” is stretched out to an almost unnecessary duration of time that may cause viewers to lose interest as the film nears its climax.
“Spy,” while somewhat forgettable and conventional, settles as a solid comedy-action synthesis, chock-full of amusing gag humor.