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Firstly, let me mention that this is my first IMDb post ever and I feel compelled to make this post based on many different things. I went into this movie with no prior knowledge other than a trailer of the movie where michael cera gets berries knocked out of his hands etc. The scene made me laugh and I thought that Jack Black and Cera could be a good pairing for a comedy. I did not know that the movie was directed by Harold Ramis nor that the script was written by Ramis as well as the guys from The Office (all three of whom are comedy geniuses), nor did I know that the movie had been panned by Roger Ebert: the only movie critic whom i actually respect in that we have very similar taste in movies. If I had read the Ebert review (1 star), I probably wouldn't have gone to see the movie but nonetheless I did. There are two kinds of comedy: comedy with a moral to the story and mindless comedy for the sole purpose of making people laugh. This is the latter but it is done to perfection. I'm not going to talk about the movie itself other than to say that the scenes with Oliver Platt and Cera had me laughing as hard as the first half hour of Borat (i.e. I could barely breathe). I'm not claiming that this movie is a classic, in fact I'll admit that there was no real point to the movie and the philosophical bits fell pretty flat but all in all there were many scenes in this movie where Ramis' genius is apparent. I went to the movie to get some laughs and I definitely got my moneys worth. For a quick example of some other comedies which had me leaving a large amount of pee for theatre personnel to mop up later: A Fish Called Wanda,...The Holy Grail, Office Space, Borat, Austin Powers, Happy Gilmore. OK I didn't see most of these in the theatre but you get the point. I can't really say why so many people are panning Year One. My only thought is that they really just don't get the humor. Obviously there is a plentiful supply of people on IMDb that will not like this notion since they couldn't possibly be wrong about anything but in my opinion they are mistaken when it comes to this movie. I have a feeling that people's opinions of this movie will change in time. Is it possible that a pointless cave man comedy could be before its time? I hope this post will get a few more people to watch this movie with an open mind.
When I first saw the in theater preview for this movie, I was extremely
excited. I went home and got onto Facebook and became a fan of the
movie, which provided me with updates containing every video pertaining
to Year One that was out there. I saw all of these videos and laughed
hysterically, but I began to get a feeling that the movie would consist
of what was in the previews and be nothing more than around 15 minutes
of funny dragged out over a 90 minute period of time.
I was wrong.
When the movie started, I began to become even more worried I would hate it because within the first 20 minutes of the movie, at least 3/4 of the things seen in the previews were already said. I figured it was going to drag on from there. To my great relief, it did not at all. The entire hour and a half of the movie was constant laughing. The way Black and Cera got themselves into so much trouble and managed to get out of it every time was perfect. The ridiculous yet hilarious references to The Bible and how things that exist today were created were perfect. The movie was exactly what it was supposed to be: a laugh out loud comedy that was only meant to entertain.
I am still baffled as to why people keep bashing this movie. Comments like "Worst Movie of the Decade" anger me... What were people expecting with this movie? A heart warming story with a compelling plot and serious action? It is like everybody is sizing this movie up to expectations that it doesn't need to be sized up to. This movie was a great movie if all you want to do is go in and laugh. If you are looking for some deeper moral and other things that don't belong in a movie like Year One, you should go and see something else.
The trailer was funnier than the movie. I was somewhat looking forward
to seeing this film, and was greatly disappointed when it turned out to
be completely awful. There were some funny moments, but they were
swallowed up by the sheer stupidity of the rest. I seriously doubt that
fans of Black or Cera will be pleased with this film.
I was lucky enough to see this movie at a free pre-screening. That makes me pretty happy, because I would have been distraught if I had to pay $7.50 to sit through this mess. The plot was very contrived, and the historical humour fizzled out after the first twenty minutes. The rest of the movie relied on a myriad of sexual innuendos that were overused and abused. Overall, the movie became very unenjoyable and although there were a few laughs hidden in there, they could not make up for the rest.
This is nowhere as bad as some are making out - it has touches of
Python and a lot of Mel Brooks - it is pretty lazy in places with too
much adlibbing - at least I hope it was adlibbing...
But this is pretty good entertainment - and it's not really about cavemen - it's about the Old Testament set mainly in Sodom - and it is kind of like Life of Brian - though clearly not in the same class.
One can understand why marketers don't want problems with an upset congregation, but at the end of the day this works pretty well as both broad comedy and a gentle satire.
Considering that I was expecting a total donkey with a side order of turkey this was pretty much a fun film - and no where near as bad as I'd heard. Can be watched without loss of brain cells...
Saw this at a matinée yesterday, with very lowered expectations. Don't quite get all the hate on here for it. If you like Jack Black and Michael Cera, they perform as expected here, loudmouthed braggart and wimpy foil, respectively. Amazing cast...David Cross as Cain and Paul Rudd as Abel? Inspired. Oliver Platt as a hairy-chested high priest? The "McLovin" Kid? There's even a member of Upright Citizens Brigade who puts in a very brief cameo. The story is dumb, and there's a few jokes that fall flat...but the sets are impressive and everyone involved seems to be having fun. A good rental, at least. But you people that are rating it a 1? Save your venom for movies that deserve that, like "Meet The Spartans" (unwatchable) or the latest Michael Bay atrocity.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
If you hated Life of Brian, then you won't like Year One either. In
fact, we see a lot of such creatures rating this movie with one star as
a political/religious statement. However, if you like your comedy
layered upon multiple levels of meaning, and embedded within a
historical and philosophical context, and you're knowledgeable enough
to get jokes based upon middle eastern mythology and the slow ascent of
enlightenment, you will love this movie.
The film starts with our Main Men, Oh and Zed (Cera and Black) embedded in a basic hunter-gatherer culture. Only problem is, Oh and Zed are modern humans, with our self-awareness and ironic detachment, surrounded by wild-state humans. The natural humans are powerful and fit, but a little lacking in philosophy.
After a close encounter with the Tree of Knowledge, Zed and Oh are exiled by their close-minded band and strike out for the Big City and Modern Times. They soon encounter the Hebrews, and this is where our own closed-minded theatre-goers get their panties in a bunch. We meet Abraham preparing to sacrifice Isaac, Cain slaying Abel, and the ridiculous absurdity of Old Testament "morality". Modern day fundies have a sense of humor chiseled in stone like the Ten Commandments, and this movie breaks them all.
Unfortunately the innocence of the hunter-gatherers has also been lost by this time. They have been captured by civilization and sold into slavery, and now Zed and Oh have a mission: rescue their damsels in distress (Maya and Eema) from slavery in Sodom.
Fortunately Isaac (in a hilarious portrayal of the Jewish Badboy by Chris Mintz-Plasse - that's McLovin to you)guides them to Sin City, where our heroes are quickly introduced into the complexities of modern politics. The power structure of the city is tyrannical and corrupt, ruled by a rotten king, his hilariously corrupt High Priest, and the scheming Prime Minister.
By the end of the film Oh and Zed and Maya and Eema (who are also very funny in supporting roles) have traversed the philosophical arc from instinctive animals through corrupt theocracy and finally end up peering through the keyhole of enlightenment. The humor is a little too smart and sacrilegious for some viewers, but for most it is an excellent comedy. I laughed my ass off and never missed it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
If you like juvenile humor, and find Jack Black funny, then this movie
works. Most people won't like it, but if you liked a movie like The
Love Guru last year, this will appeal to you. Nothing too clever, but
Basically, Jack Black and Michael Cera play their usual characters, just in loincloths. Jack can't hunt or gather, but he eats from the tree of knowledge, and both are banished into the world. David Cross plays Cain, who is the first person they meet, and actually plays someone closer to his stand up act than Tobias (David and Michael would have worked together on Arrested Development, but David shows that he can actually play another character).
They go from one biblical setting to another, making fun (mainly) of the old testament, and eventually wind up in Sodom, with Cain, and the requisite love interests....
I think where this movie falls down is it seems a bit like a long skit. The chemistry between Jack Black and Michael Cera I thought wasn't great, but the plot/character development was really just secondary to getting in some jokes. Obviously, the jokes won't be to everyones taste (hence the rankings of 0), and will be to others (thus the rankings of 10).
Again, although this may very well win a Razzie this year, I liked it, and if you like stupid humor, this movie has lots of it.
A great number of talented people were involved with this film: writer/director Harold Ramis (Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day), co-writers Gene Stupnitsky and Lee Eisenberg (The Office), lead actors Jack Black and Michael Cera, supporting actors David Cross and Oliver Platt, and cameo actors Paul Rudd, Bill Hader, and Kyle Gass, just to name a few. And it was produced by Judd Apatow. And yet it goes so terribly wrong. How? You have to go to the source: the script, which is aimless, disjointed, and sadly puerile. If you enjoy unfunny penis jokes and find the digestion of human excrement absolutely hilarious, you might enjoy this movie. I found very few laughs here, and I can't believe the amount of talent squandered on this trainwreck.
The film keeps itself from being too thoughtful by focusing on the pop culture knowledge of history and blending it with modern societal norms to create comedic situations. There are plenty of scenes that will give you laughs that pass as abruptly as they come and a few that are longer lasting. From crude sexual humor to semi-intelligent humor this film targets younger audiences that can look at religion in a comedic light. Most of the jokes for this film are at the expense of the Jewish and Christian religion. By no means is this a proper history lesson for anyone and shouldn't be viewed by ages 15 and under without parental permission. That said it is a funny film throughout. If you enjoy buddy films this one will deliver; especially if you are out with friends who enjoy seeing Jack Black's high energy humor and Micheal Cera's awkward teenager humor as they are pretty much in every scene.
I found this movie on the bottom rack of the corner shelf at
blockbuster, which didn't bode well, but I'm glad I took a chance. If
you like Arrested Development or Mr Show, you'll like this movie.
The movie is a satire of the old testament. It presents the biblical creation story in the context of a tribe of stone age humans with contemporary mindsets. The results are hilarious, it's not as good as Monty Python's Life of Brian, but it's in the same ballpark.
The only area where the movie suffers is in what seems like an attempt to cater to a younger audience with toilet humor. However, as you cringe watching the toilet humor scenes, you get sideswiped by a few clever jokes that are timed just right.
There are a few jokes in the movie that are delivered so perfectly, with such great nuance and skill, that just thinking about them still makes me laugh. My favorite is the scene where the priest is reading the omens from the sheep entrails he's just poured onto the table, "to me, I see a smiley face, and that makes me happy". ;) This movie is one of the few that I'm willing to buy.
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