Wednesday, September 29, 2010
For those unaware, MacGruber was a film based on the long-running SNL skit where Will Forte plays a character based on MacGyver, only McGruber is mostly incompetent and a total asshole. It was a funny skit, that usually lasted about thirty seconds or go, and almost always (or just always?) ended with MacGruber blowing himself up somehow. Funny and often very clever. When adapting that concept to the big screen, they made the decision to expand it beyond just a McGyver parody and making it a lampoon of all big, 80s action movies. Just about every cliche is in here, from having the reluctant hero living out his life in a monastery to an absolutely brilliant montage sequence where MacGruber goes around the country, assembling his old of mercenaries. This was funny stuff.
Even more funny were the scenes where Will Forte was just allowed to talk and go off on tangents that served zero purpose. Forte is a gifted comedian who brought a lot to such a stupid, one-note character. And his chemistry with Ryan Phillipe and Kristen Wiig was great, although this was definitely Will Forte's movie which gave Wiig very little to do. This was unfortunate because Wiig is a hilarious performer, so she should've been given a bit more screen time, or at least been casting as something other than just another straight man to the crazy MacGruber. This movie was basically just Will Forte acting crazy while everybody else just looked confused and said he was crazy. A few more funny characters would've added a bit more comic interest.
But, at the end of the day, I laughed a lot. Maybe not as often or as hard as I wanted to, but laugh I did. MacGruber is a funny character, Val Kilmer gave a pretty good performance as the villain, and the jokes were really strange and raunchy and outrageous. Here's a sample piece of dialogue from the IMDB memorable quotes page:
MacGruber: Looks like you're keeping your bod pretty tight.
Frank Korver: You're looking pretty good yourself.
MacGruber: Well, everday's a workout when you gotta carry around a 20 pound python in your jeans.
Frank Korver: You and your dick comments.
MacGruber: It's fun to say them.
Frank Korver: It's fun to hear them.
MacGruber: That's why I say them.
Frank Korver: And that's why I listen.
If you thought that was funny, you'll think this movie was funny. I don't judge, because I thought it was funny. I also learned from the audio commentary that the above dialogue was all improvised. I'm not sure what that says about the people involved, but it probably says something.