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Overall Rating
2.42

Awesome: 0%
Worth A Look: 20%
Average: 22.5%
Pretty Bad37.5%
Total Crap: 20%

5 reviews, 10 user ratings


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Crew, The (2000)
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by Scott Weinberg

"'Crew' and unusual punishment."
1 stars

This is not a funny movie. While many films would consider that a form of praise, it's safe to assume that a comedy movie is shooting for a stronger endorsement. While the awful script makes it pretty obvious when you're supposed to be laughing, it simply isn't engaging or entertaining at all. This crew of actors deserves a lot better than such tired and forced jokes like 'old man farting', 'old man peeing', and 'old man farting again'.

This bargain-basement comedy tells the story of four old mobster buddies, who decide to jump start their long-dormant wise guy careers. This movie tries desperately to be a high-energy slapstick affair, but almost every gag in the script makes an audible thud when it hits the screen.

In an attempt to scare off the young tenants, the four codgers stage a 'mob hit' in the lobby of their hotel. Unfortunately, the corpse they grab is that of a local drug dealer's father, and he's not happy about it. It's these kinds of ridiculous and contrived coincidences that will have you rolling your eyes in sheer annoyance. As if the proceedings weren't banal enough, our geriatric stereotypes are then blackmailed by a local stripper, and the plot swiftly goes from simple stupidity to mind-crushing boredom.

None of these reliable actors offers anything resembling a good time here. Richard Dreyfuss (Jaws) offers perhaps his worst performance to date (Krippendorf's Tribe, anyone?), and you'll cringe every time he tries to squeeze out an Italian-sounding "Fuggetaboutit!" Burt Reynolds (The Cannonball Run) is almost as bad, and it seems like he's trying to squash any potential charm or humor his character may offer. Burt better be careful; these are the kinds of movie roles that put him on 'Hollywood Hiatus' for a few years. Dan Hedaya (Clueless) and Seymour Cassel (Rushmore) acquit themselves only slightly better, mainly because they simply have smaller roles and therefore less screen time. As the local stripper, Jennifer Tilly (Liar Liar) shows up and offers her only two cinematic assets: breasts. For some strange reason, Carrie Anne Moss (The Matrix) decided to take a role as a cop who also conveniently happens to be the long-lost daughter of someone. Give me a small break.

Director Michael Dinner continues his string of cookie-cutter comedies, and as always he relies on his patented 'turn the camera on and film people talking' style of moviemaking. Considering the low quality of Barry Fanaro's script, it certainly seems right that the producers wanted the director of movies like Hot to Trot, Heaven Help Us and the Judge Reinhold epic, Off Beat. This guy should be ashamed for committing one act in particular: He does the seemingly impossible, by making character actor Jeremy Piven (Very Bad Things) completely boring. The Crew goes from ugly to horrifying by the time Lainie Kazan (Lust in the Dust) shows up, playing perhaps the most one-dimensional Jewish caricature ever captured on celluloid.

One huge mistake that lazy screenwriters often make: They often confuse 'funny dialogue' with 'ripping off scenes whole from other (monumentally better) movies'. Halfway through this seemingly 4-hour movie, there's a ponderously obvious reference to the brilliant 'restaurant entrance' sequence in Goodfellas. Watching the scene, I was struck by how often this happens, and for the sake of clarity I will restate "A simple reference to an earlier movie is not funny." It's lazy, it's annoying, and all it really does is remind an audience of how cool that other movie was in relation to how shit-covered and dumb this current one is.

While the unending string of immature and brutally unfunny gags is pretty horrible to behold, the ham-handed attempts at melodrama are even worse. It's astonishing to see something resembling an apparently earnest tone pop up, since the film is essentially a collection of jokes that even Mad Magazine would reject as 'too infantile'.

Since it's obvious that this movie is aimed at a decidedly older audience, it would seem that a film geared for senior citizens would perhaps treat their intended audience with a small degree of respect. In the world of this movie, the elderly are all defined as cheap, garish, loud, unattractive, violent, vulgar or near death. This seems an odd way for a movie to ingratiate itself with an older crowd, especially a movie that's so weak to begin with.

To those who may feel I'm being perhaps a bit too hard on what is essentially a throwaway situation comedy, I submit that a few solid laughs are not to much to ask for. Watching The Crew, you'll get the sense that nobody involved with the movie really cared that much, so it's pretty tough for an audience to care either.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=4428&reviewer=128
originally posted: 09/14/00 11:23:38
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User Comments

3/21/10 art AVOID IT LIKE THE PLAGUE! 1 stars
3/26/03 Jack Sommersby Some cute moments, but film runs out of material after 20 minutes. 2 stars
8/17/02 Andrew Patrick This Movie Is Outrageously Funny,This Is The Best I Ever Seen 3 stars
8/15/02 Andrew Patrick I Think The Crew Is One Of The Funniest Movies I Ever Seen 3 stars
7/12/02 drkdahlia Falls flat in a couple of places, but generally funny 3 stars
11/28/01 C.B aside from the part at the end, this sucked big time. 2 stars
4/09/01 Girl 9 Pathetic attempts at humor only cheapen this already crappy flick! 2 stars
1/13/01 Steph Hammer It sucked 1 stars
9/17/00 JB This movie is fun for anyone who likes these older actors. Its funny but no great. 4 stars
8/28/00 Captain Highcrime This movie contains the funniest looking corpse shot I've ever seen. 4 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  25-Aug-2000 (PG-13)

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