InAPPropriate Comedy: Film Review
Adrien Brody, Lindsay Lohan, Rob Schneider, Michelle Rodriguez, Ari Shaffir
Adrien Brody, Lindsay Lohan, Michelle Rodriguez and Rob Schneider are among the stars of this sketch comedy film.
Just when the recent misbegotten sketch comedy film Movie 43 had blessedly receded from memory, along comes InAPPropriate Comedy, another piece of cinematic sludge. While its predecessor at least provided the dubious pleasure of watching many of Hollywood’s biggest stars utterly humiliate themselves, this low-rent production features but one Oscar winner, Adrien Brody, here thoroughly slumming it along with Rob Schneider, Michelle Rodriguez and Lindsay Lohan.
Its nonsensical title referring to its segments being lazily introduced as smartphone apps, the film directed by Vince Offer features one nonsensical, laborious sketch after another. Although each lasts only a few minutes, their one-joke nature makes it feel like hours. What’s worse, the unfunny concepts are repeated ad infinitum.
Thus we have Brody, affecting a Clint Eastwood-style rasp, playing “Flirty Harry,” whose pink trousers and catchphrase of “Go ahead, make me gay” pretty much sums up the purported humor, which otherwise consists of him uttering one gay-themed double entendre after another. Schneider and Rodriguez play a pair of enthusiastic porn film critics to similarly tawdry effect, while the former doubles as a sleazy shrink encouraging a female patient to provide graphic details about her nymphomania.
Other segments depict the misadventures of the “Blackass” crew, although their spoofing of the MTV franchise is quickly abandoned in favor of scenes of black people making whites highly uncomfortable, such as when one member offers a coat hanger-style abortion to a pregnant couple in a doctor’s waiting room.
But the lion’s share of screen time goes to co-writer Ari Shaffir as “The Amazing Racist,” who lives up to his name in endless hidden camera-style skits in which he taunts various ethnic groups with savage insults that provoke angry reactions. Whether attempting to persuade Jews to sign a petition apologizing for their part in killing Jesus or offering random black passersby free boat trips to Africa, his shtick is so painfully obvious and unfunny that it doesn’t even manage its goal of being offensive.
Apparently making time between court appearances, Lohan shows up for very brief bookending segments in which she poses over a subway grate, a la Marilyn Monroe, with similarly revealing results. The reason for her participation can be readily explained by the fact that she’s given the opportunity to gun down a pack of paparazzi.
Offering nary a single funny moment in its seemingly endless 84 minutes, the film — it’s too laborious to retype the inane title — provides evidence that cinematic sketch comedy is clearly a lost art. The inevitable outtakes seen during the end credits seem to indicate that the actors, at least, were having fun. Too bad none of it managed to find its way onto the screen.
Opens March 22 (Freestyle Releasing)
Production: Square One Entertainment
Cast: Ari Shaffir, Rob Schneider, Michelle Rodriguez, Adrien Brody, Lindsay Lohan
Director/executive producer: Vince Offer
Screenwriters: Ken Pringle, Ari Shaffir, Vince Offer
Producers: Robert B. Shapiro, Ken Pringle
Directors of photography: Anastas N. Michos, Ken Barrows
Editor: Sandy S. Solowitz
Production designer: Justin Dragonas
Costume designers: Dalhia Forutan, Hank Ford
Rated R, 84 min.