Film And Movies

What Went Wrong With… Superbad (2007)?

70s style font reading "Super? Nope. Bad? Yep."

Starring three of the most deformed and misshapen actors in Hollywood, Superbad is a film that’s not much to look at when it comes to star-quality. That doesn’t matter of course, because this is apparently 2007’s greatest achievement in film comedy, or at least that’s what we were told by cock-sucking critics. I didn’t watch this movie when it was originally released because I was busy retching over the poster outside my local multiplex, but once this film was broadcast on satellite I had to see what the fuss was all about. As usual, the hype was just that: unjust and undeserved praise for marketing purposes. Despite what all the critics said, Superbad isn’t that good.

Written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg and produced by Judd Apatow, the opening credits reads like a list of overrated noughties’ hacks. With these comedic geniuses at the helm, surprise, surprise, the dialogue isn’t funny, in fact it’s a little odd. We have a pair of straight teenagers preoccupied by sex but they have the gayest conversation about subscribing to porn which leads to their admitted ambivalence to vaginas and later a dislike of menstruation, not to mention an obsession with penises in artistic form.

With incessant talk about pussies and dicks, the real fannies and pricks are the two leads. Mr. Fat-N-Ugly (Jonah Hill) and Little-Miss Skinny-N-Unsightly (Michael Cera) are already an off-putting duo to watch but here they play characters that seem more suited to a drama profiling a pair of of serial rapists, flashers, and pedophiles than an effing comedy (what’s with that comment about nipples looking like baby’s toes?). Supposedly chronicling a teenager’s high-school shenanigans, none of this shit felt familiar to me. This wasn’t Shermer High. I don’t know about you but I was praying for a school shooter to show up and gun these dweeby cum-stains off the pissing screen.

The plot, if there is one, is that a couple of nerdy, sex-obsessed high-school seniors buy booze, run around town, and go to random parties like every 1980’s comedy that ever existed, although in this case, it’s not funny in the slightest. The main issue is that a nerd who has aspirations of getting some superficially out-of-his-league quim has to at least be be likeable – Pretty In Pink, Back To The Future, even Napoleon Dynamite – but here, all we have is irritating facial, vocal, and personality traits (actually, most of the girls are also irritating types too). With the main characters called “Seth” and “Evan”, this is an autobiographical plot I guess, which means these bland, virginal, wannabe cool, rapey fuckers is what Rogen and Goldberg were both like as teens. Explains a lot.

Greg Mottola’s bland, non-direction doesn’t help matters either. The plot is trite, middle-class, white teenage, semi-angst but the aesthetic for some unfathomable reason is throwback pointlessness. From the film grain, analogue opening credits to the old-school funk music, someone please elucidate as to why this shite references the 1970’s when it’s set in the present day. Some ironic yet racist idea of what’s “cool” I suppose, but this doesn’t contribute to the laughs either.

And if anyone can explain how Michael Cera and Christopher Mintz-Plasse became famous, let me know. Talent and looks aren’t reasons as to their (short-lived) stardom and since neither have a likeable personality, fuck knows how these wankers got famous. Jonah Hill’s career of being fat, not fat, fat again, “look, I’m a serious director not a comedian”, cue mid-life crisis beard and haircut, and “look, I’m a comedian again”, is a little less perplexing by comparison. Looking like Seth Rogan’s midget cousin, I assume being one iota better at delivering his lines than Cera meant Hill was destined for frigging stardom. 🙄 And I might as well mention that the younger counterpart to Jonah’s character (the dick artiste played by Casey Margolis) looks like John Wayne Gacy: The Primary School Years. Shouldn’t kid actors be cute, not look like a casting call for a true crime adaptation? Very much a precursor to Home Sweet Home Alone.

So if your idea of entertainment is a fat white man with Richard Simmons’ hairdo playing a boy who pervs over various bland women pretending to be high school girls, you’ll love this shit. This isn’t my idea of fun. The screenplay might be aiming for Revenge Of The Nerds meets Porkies but Superbad is shittier and pervier… and shittier than both combined. I didn’t laugh at all and I was not entertained. There’s only so much you can stand by way of sex convo (followed by more sex convo) especially when the lines are spoken by these downright unattractive and unpleasant characters. I personally couldn’t root for, couldn’t relate to, and couldn’t laugh with (or laugh at) any of them.

I can’t count the amount of times someone either mentioned or played a clip of “McLovin’” back in the late-noughties, followed by an endorsement about how funny this crap was and how iconic this scene is. This may be the funniest scene in this film, but that ain’t saying much. Since this film wants to borrow from the past let me say this; even if I was being tickled on the soles of my feet with feathers plucked from Rod Hull’s emu, if Superbad was on the cathode-ray telly in the background, I’d fail to laugh even once.

Giving the cast of Licorice Pizza and Adam Driver‘s headshot a run for their money in the hideous-faced-actor stakes, Superbad contains the doggiest dogs Hollywood once had to offer. Tinseltown producers please come get what looks like your best friend’s, cousin’s, accountant’s kids off the silver screen and hire someone with some bloody charisma. Quit going through your black book of nepotism or your big book of ugly fucks.

Super Bad.

From The Vaults Of

This review was supposed to be posted after the article about Seth Rogen but I never got around to finishing it, until now.

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