Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Movie Review: "21 and Over"

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Watched "21 and Over" last night at Mlimani Theatre so sharing a review for those wondering about it.

If you should use other films/media to describe "21 and Over", it is like a combination of "Hang Over", "American Pie", and "Jackass". If describing in one sentence, "21 and Over" is stupid drunkenness or drunk galore? It is an enjoyable film and I would recommend it for those who enjoy dirty slapstick humor and just college craziness. I wouldn't feel the need to watch this film again and it isn't an Oscar nominee type of film, but If you like watching drunk people, this film is for you.

I admit, I like watching this type of films from time to time, but a big reason I was interested in this film was because I liked the writers' Jon Lucas and Scott Moore's other pieces, the popular "Hang Over" film series and "Change Up". I did assume that "21 and Over" would be structured and directed just like "Hang Over but "21 and Over" does not have the story-telling abilities that "Hang Over" has nor are the story, plot, resolution, and characters anywhere as interesting. One's own experiences and perspectives change with age, and Lucas and Moore are out of touch with the current 20s generation as the dialogue, story development, and characters in "21 and Over" are old, clich├ęd, and stereotypical.

The movie took a while to pick up the pace. Surprisingly and thankfully Jeff Chang is not the main focus in this film, nothing against the actors (these newcomers did a great job), but the supposed main character burned through his drinking and bar scenes early on in a series of montages.

Some of the likable aspects of this movie are the timing of the stunts and how outrageous the stunts are. When it seemed like the film would end soon or run out of tricks, the characters' rolling ball of chaos just got bigger and bigger. The stunts pulled now a day for slapstick humor are getting more outrageous and openly, visually sexual. If nothing, Lucas and Moore get kudos for fresh stunts. Perhaps they spent the time they were supposed to use for brainstorming dialogue and story development, watching "Jackass" instead.

In the end this film is still enjoyable because it's not like this film's audience watches these kinds of films for the dialogue nor accurate representation of cultural identities. All that matters is that the slapstick stunts and moderate dirtiness of the film is enough to not leave a silent house. For sure, the high school kids during the advanced screening got a kick out of it, hoping their college life can be that fun? Crazy at least.

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