Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Take Me Home Tonight

Our delivery of handwash, granola bars and shampoo from America arrived today at the office and I lugged 5 kilograms of stuff back home. This feat of strength was on top of a hard 10k this morning, and after that my heart was racing, I was giddy and lightheaded, and needed some rest from it all. For some insane reason my wife suggested watching Evil Dead 2, but the last thing I wanted was to watch a tree raping a co-ed, so we downloaded Take Me Home Tonight instead.

It's tonally quite odd. The advertising made it out to be another retro-teen comedy, set in the 80s with cocaine-powered hilarious results(tm) but it all felt a bit darker, like Bret Easton Ellis had been trying his hand at making an Alicia Silverstone vehicle.

There are constant speeches about being lost in life without any goals (at 21), there's a unhappy marriage, a pervy (coke fuelled) swinging couple in a bathroom that's not really played for laughs, and an arrest scene that's not particularly funny. Or very badly staged.

In fact, there's a slight air of either incompetence or Situationism to the whole affair, including a scene at a party where the leading man and lady can't make eye contact. I thought it was meant to be an amusing gimmick, until I realised that during a heartfelt confession of true love, neither person seemed to feel like looking the other in the eye. Like the actors themselves were distracted by watching their lives pass by.

There's a man with an (unexplained) plastercast on his arm. There's an unexpected twist to do with an application for Cambridge University. There's the (admittedly pretty good) reference to something that's "not exactly rocket surgery" and there are lots of bankers, until you get confused and doubt the existence of Goldman Sachs.

There's also a trampoline, a standard issue sexy Goth lady, a terrifying Lucy Punch (one of those actresses you know you've seen before but can never say where - I'm pretty sure she's not working in the Starbucks over the road from my office, but who can be sure?), a heroine who gets cross when she finds she's been deceived - crikey, if it wasn't for the consequence free cloud of cocaine / groin kicking / giant metal ball rolling out of control down a hill, it would almost feel realistic.

So I didn't laugh as much as I should, or as much as I had expected. Not every film can be a Sex Drive (Stifler, a man dressed as a Mexican doughnut, Amish mindwreckers) but then perhaps not every film should be.

My heart is still pounding now. I don't think that was Anna Faris' doing. Maybe I really do need a lie-down.


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