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Overall Rating
1.71

Awesome: 7.06%
Worth A Look: 3.53%
Average: 7.06%
Pretty Bad: 17.65%
Total Crap64.71%

6 reviews, 49 user ratings


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Date Movie
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by David Cornelius

"No matter how bad you think it might be, it's actually worse."
1 stars

In “Date Movie,” the filmmakers parody the Will Smith romantic comedy “Hitch” by giving us a character named, well, Hitch. You’re kidding, right? This is a new level of stupid for spoof movies; it can’t even bother itself with coming up with a dumb-funny Mad Magazine-style parody name.

This sums up “Date Movie” better than anything else the film has to offer: it’s not smart enough to do anything at all, and more importantly, it doesn’t care.

Taking its cue from the insufferable “Scary Movie” franchise (the success of which still boggles my mind), we don’t get deft parody or clever lampooning, but instead the depressing notion that all you have to do to make one of these films is to slap a bunch of references together and call it a day. Writers Aaron Seltzer (who also directed) and Jason Friedberg previously penned both “Spy Hard” and the first “Scary Movie” (which is worse?), and they bring their complete inability to form new material to this, a film that intends to send up popular romcoms (as well as any other recent movie, like “King Kong,” whenever they run out of date movies to reference) but merely apes their most memorable scenes, adding in a few poop jokes and calling it parody.

The problem, of course, is that you can’t really parody comedy. You can’t poke fun at something that was trying to be fun in the first place; parody comes from mocking the serious. You could, I suppose, do a take off on all the ways some comedies go wrong - the overplayed physical humor, the poorly delivered punchlines - but that would require wit, intelligence, and a deep-rooted understanding of the mechanics of humor. You could also, I again suppose, send up the clichés of the romantic comedy genre. Ah, but that, too, would require effort, and heaven forbid Seltzer and Friedberg actually try something.

Consider the scene that attempts to spoof “Meet the Parents.” In it, our hapless male lead (newcomer Adam Campbell) walks in on a cat using the toilet. Only, see, this cat has diarrhea.

Get it? It’s just like that one scene you saw in that one movie, but with poop! Repeat that idea for a painful seventy-plus minutes, and voilà! “Date Movie.”

At least in that scene, somebody actually bothered to add something. What can we possibly make of the one dream sequence in which a guy dressed up like Ben Stiller from “Dodgeball” runs into a room and throws a rubber ball? Moments like this abound, leaving this not a spoof movie but a mix tape. Throw in an analogy of bad cover songs to that idea and “Date Movie” becomes one of those compilation albums where all your favorite songs are clumsily performed by the Countdown Singers.

I’m not even sure what to make of other bits, like a pseudo-parody of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding;” in that film, the father sprayed Windex on everything, and in this film, the Greek dad (Eddie Griffin, who is contractually obligated to appear in any movie this awful) sprays hummus on everything. Is this a joke? Is this the filmmakers’ idea of what a punchline is supposed to be? “Oh, like, OK, the dad sprayed stuff, and he’s Greek, so let’s give Griffin a bottle of hummus! And then, like, hey, let’s repeat this joke every time we see Griffin! Ha!”

When not attempting to copy gags from other movies, the filmmakers rely on the worst assortment of fart jokes and pratfalls available. There’s a whole opening bit - following a Napoleon Dynamite dream sequence that goes nowhere - in which Alyson Hannigan (who really deserves so much better than to be stuck here) dances seductively while in a fat suit. Because dancing around in a fat suit was what was chosen by Seltzer and Friedberg as the funniest of all possible scenarios. Ouch.

The most depressing aspect of all of this is that one can envision Seltzer and Friedberg laughing hysterically at the notion of, say, dolling Jennifer Coolidge up to look like Barbra Streisand for a “Meet the Fockers” rip-off. (There are no jokes to this. Coolidge merely looks like Babs, repeats a few of her jokes from that film, and that’s it.) The movie plows ahead cheerfully, unaware that it’s completely absent of the slightest laugh. It’s as if the whole thing was written and directed by fifth-graders. (And edited by them, too, if the complete lack of comic timing is any indication.)

The only explanation I can offer in regards to this movie’s mere existence is that somebody felt deeply that they could make a movie worse than all the “Scary Movie” entries combined. “Date Movie” is an empty hole of a film, ceaseless in its tired yuks, merciless in its terribleness. It’s not enough that nobody involved had the understanding of how to craft an effective parody; Seltzer and Friedberg seem to lack the basic know-how required to tell a single joke. This is one of the most incompetently produced studio movies I’ve ever seen - and yes, that includes the other movies these idiots wrote. For a comedy to be worse than “Spy Hard,” well, that’s just a whole new category of dreadful right there.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=14011&reviewer=392
originally posted: 08/10/06 09:40:32
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User Comments

2/17/10 JM Synth Painfully unfunny, but not as abysmally cheap/lazy as future Friedberg/Seltzer efforts 2 stars
2/16/09 Samantha Pruitt pretty stupid, but still some what funny! 3 stars
1/15/09 FrankNFurter As funny as watching puppies drown.Total waste of film!!! 1 stars
1/08/09 Shaun Wallner Hilarious Movie! 5 stars
8/30/08 David The movie's funny if your brain-dead. 1 stars
6/08/08 PAUL SHORTT AS TERRIBLE AND SLIPSHOD A FILM AS ONE COULD IMAGINE 1 stars
6/06/08 Randy War Hall This Movie made my ears sad. 1 stars
4/05/08 art IT"S FUNNY IF YOU KEEP AN OPEN MIND 4 stars
3/25/08 Isaac M. Baranoff One of the most awful films I've ever attempted to sit through. 1 stars
3/08/08 ftard These directors make tailor made amusement for trailer/white trash films. 1 stars
3/02/08 John Millheim pretty funny 4 stars
7/09/07 fools♫gold Wow, this and Final Destination 3 came out in the same month. Now wasn't that a funny line? 1 stars
5/23/07 Abs Dumbest movie ever. Nothing to enjoy at all here. 1 stars
5/15/07 David Pollastrini PRETTY DUMB 2 stars
4/03/07 brent gerald mejia sr. Eddie Griffin stars;ENOUGH said! 1 stars
2/22/07 Beau i love the openeing song and dance 'Hannigan' does, its worth watching it 4 her 3 stars
1/18/07 del Quite possibly one of the worst movies ever made. 1 stars
12/22/06 ES note the writers and avoid everything they do in the future 1 stars
11/07/06 wesley sniper Dude, Lakehurst is one word. We still love ya! The movie sucked ass. 1 stars
10/31/06 Jacko wacko Poorly classified but okay 3 stars
10/31/06 Chris I worked at Taco Bell so Taco was was just funny 5 stars
10/25/06 Drew G I almost made it 15 minutes into this movie 1 stars
10/24/06 Phil LOL @ Jon (below) 1 stars
10/03/06 Jon Bad, bad, bad, bad, bad. Horrible movie. Why can't I give it zero stars? 1 stars
8/26/06 Stanley Thai An underrated film that is taken so seriously. People, just relax and enjoy the film! 3 stars
8/25/06 BENNY I LOVED WATCHING THE LOVELY VOLUPTIOUS YOUN CARMEN ELECTRA BEING SACRIFICED TO KING KONG. I 2 stars
8/18/06 Nix So funny I shit myself 5 stars
8/17/06 Harold I am completely without words...I really am. STAGGERINGLY bad...staggeringly... 1 stars
8/11/06 michael has a couple moments but not woth paying for 3 stars
8/06/06 Indrid Cold The upside is that aside from the ending credits, it's only a little over an hour long. 2 stars
8/02/06 dan quite funny,worth a look 3 stars
7/21/06 Joe Smaltz Sucks SucksSucksSucksSucksSucksSucksSucksSucksSucksSucksSucksSucksSucks 1 stars
6/12/06 Jeff Anderson Unfunny junk & DOA. Hannigan & ONLY Hannigan is the lone great thing in this! 1 stars
6/11/06 Ryan_A I laughed. A lot. But I felt bad about it afterwards. Not as funny as it thinks it is. 2 stars
6/10/06 The Thomas Family My family thought this movie was awesome! It kept us laughing. 5 stars
4/19/06 FRED THE ONLY THING THAT I LIKED ABOUT THIS MOVIE IS WATCHING CARMEN ELECTRA BEING SACRIFICED 2 stars
4/18/06 Erika Clarkson Way too lame - no real nudity, scatlolgical humor restricted to cat, no farting girls. Darn 4 stars
4/14/06 Duffyboy666 How can these bastards live with themselves? 1 stars
4/08/06 Astrocreep Sooo damn funny. Great Napolean impression 5 stars
3/30/06 Rhiannon This film rocks!! 5 stars
3/13/06 date movie sucks crap movie 1 stars
3/11/06 Dillon None of the scenes have real endings. I laughed a little, but not enough. 2 stars
3/05/06 jeff s. openning dance was good, thats about it.sad how they let it b released 1 stars
3/05/06 chris f this film is a let down they take the piss out of michael jackson -tats just wrong 2 stars
3/04/06 Green Gremlin How dare they insult "Napoleon Dynamite" with this hideous crap !!! 1 stars
3/03/06 Mungface Someone told me this was "freaking hilarious"...I killed them. 1 stars
2/22/06 djacosta Utterly disgusting 1 stars
2/20/06 M The cat is the only thing that remotely made me laugh. 1 stars
2/18/06 Eevil Wolfie Opening dance sequence is good. Everything else is crap. 2 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  17-Feb-2006 (PG-13)
  DVD: 30-May-2006

UK
  24-Feb-2006

Australia
  16-Feb-2006




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