Archives for posts with tag: Melissa McCarthy

An unlikable person committing unlawful acts unrepentantly doesn’t sound like a winning premise for a movie. Especially not if it’s a drama starring Melissa McCarthy in bad hair and worse makeup. And yet “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” works. And I mean it works on multiple levels. Forging letters by famous people? Instead of not caring, the obscurity became fascinating. McCarthy playing the aseptic Lee Israel? Instead of rolling my eyes, I couldn’t remove them from her car wreck of a life. Added bonuses: a couple of solid supporting characters, just a touch of Manhattan scenery and subtle, jazzy soundtrack.

If someone had made a sequel to “Team America World Police,” it would have sucked. How about waiting 14 years and then doing a police procedural with pervy puppets and some human actors? That might not suck. And thus we have “The Happytime Murders” (2018). It’s terrible, awful, raunchy, funny, satirical – and oddly topical, if you catch the absurdist racial subtext – but it definitely doesn’t suck. If the premise doesn’t appeal to you, don’t watch it. If the hilarious shock of parody hardcore puppet sex hasn’t worn off in the years since “Team America,” come enjoy it all over again.

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Kevin Hart made a movie called “Central Intelligence” (2016). I can imagine some critics enjoyed playing with the word “intelligence,” as in the movie’s lack thereof. But the story itself has depth: high school loser and homecoming king find roles reversed 20 years later as they team up in a sort-of buddy-cop flick with a complex, and cartoonishly violent, international espionage subplot. Johnson gives a great effort, but Hart’s high-pitched schtick makes me tired after about 10 minutes. It’s similar to my feelings toward Melissa McCarthy, who, ironically, has a funny (and blessedly brief) cameo.