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Overall Rating

Awesome: 14.06%
Worth A Look: 18.75%
Pretty Bad: 15.63%
Total Crap: 14.06%

5 reviews, 34 user ratings

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by Brian McKay

"'Re-Made' is more like it. Did you see Swingers? same shit, different film"
3 stars

Which is not to say that I didn't like Swingers. Jon Favreau can't act worth a fuck but with Swingers he proved that he can pull together a halfway snappy little picture from the writer/director's chair. But after this tepid follow-up, he's gonna have to work a little harder to re-prove himself on his next undertaking.

Before I launch into the review, can I just add a little side note? I go to the theater in downtown SF to see this film, pay my nine bucks, go down the hall, step into the theater and. . . The screen is the size of a big-screen TV, and there's like 20 seats in the motherfucker. I looked around at the tiny room, slack-jawed, wondering when the stewardess was going to come out to announce the in-flight movie. I vaguely remember the "Micro-theater" concept popping up in the eighties, but I thought it had stayed there. When I pay nine bucks for a movie, I fucking expect the entire screen to be there. Oh, and would it hurt to have some sound that is slightly better or louder than what comes out of my PC speakers? Jesus.

But, as it turns out, showing this movie in the closet theater may have been the smart move. Better to have only 15 seats empty than 150. Made isn't an awful film. It's quite funny in places - before the charm starts to wear thin. Favreau plays Bobby, the same kind of dopey nice guy mixed up in the awkward situations that he was in Swingers. Vince Vaughn, as his childhood friend Ricky, is also playing the same ultra-annoying doofus hipster he did in Swingers. In fact, I almost thought they were the same characters at first. But while Vaughn's character was just subdued enough to be consistently funny in that film, he is so non-stop and over the top this time around that you want to bitchslap him back into Norman Bates mode. He provides some of the funniest moments of the film, for sure, but he also makes it seem an hour longer than it really is.

Bobby and Ricky work a variety of small odd jobs for the Mob which, for Bobby, includes driving his stripper junkie whore girlfriend Jessica (Famke Jannsen) from bachelor party to bachelor party and trying to keep her from turning tricks. Mob boss Max (Peter Falk, who is the true comic gem of this piece, and criminally underused) decides to give Bobby a chance at a more important gig, and allows him to take his idiot friend along if he agrees to "vouch for him"

So, they go off to New York with specific instructions to not get drunk or otherwise incapacitated, not talk about who they work with or what they are doing there, keep a low profile, and a host of other ground rules, all of which loudmouth idiot Ricky promptly violates. For the most part, Bobby just puts up with it, while the audience wonders why he hasn't roped the stupid fuck and left him in the trunk so that his big mouth doesn't get them both killed.

Why they are sent to New York in the first place is never entirely clear. All I remember is that they meet a lot of shady people in a lot of bars and go to a lot of trouble for what seems like a minor transaction. P. Diddy shows up as a Harlem gangster who is forced to tolerate these two idiots because he owes Max a favor. While his acting isn't laughably bad, he doesn't do much to distinguish himself from every rapper wannabe movie star out there. In fact, I thought he was DMX from "Exit Wounds" at first.

The connect-the-dots plot seems to be nothing more than a translucent bridge to the next scene where Vaughn can run his mouth and Favreau can play off him as the longsuffering friend who comes a little closer to reaching his breaking point each time. Scuffles break out often, but they, like Vaughn's trash talk, get less amusing as the minutes tick by.

It's very possible that Favreau may have shot his wad with "Swingers". If every film is going to be him playing the dopey nice guy and Vaughn playing the hyper-ego motor mouth, the shit is going to get old fast. Maybe Woody Allen has made a career out of essentially making the same movie over and over again, but I don't think that Favreau has the wit or the skills to keep pulling off that same one trick.

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originally posted: 09/25/01 18:54:00
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User Comments

1/07/11 Josie Cotton is a goddess Eh, it's alright 3 stars
8/27/05 ES Vince Vaughn unbelievably does this movie in as a guy so stupid its impossible to fathom 2 stars
1/20/05 Jeff Anderson A WORTHY & BRILLIANT FOLLOWUP TO SWINGERS! Vaughn and Favreau are pure gold together again! 5 stars
8/12/04 psycho dwarf Favreau gives too much latitude in his direction and script. This is a lazy mess. 2 stars
9/25/03 G$ Almost as good as Swingers. Definitely grows on you. Vaughan is hilarious 5 stars
7/12/03 Alice Thought it was very funny 4 stars
5/10/03 rue the whirl watch it. wait 6 months. watch it again. you'll love it. 5 stars
4/05/03 Jack Sommersby Very grating, but it JUST manages to get by. Combs is sensational. 3 stars
12/28/02 spacecowboy-00x nice cinematography and photography, and very entertaining 4 stars
10/27/02 MarktheShark6 Having Vince/Favreau reunite is great, but the cameo by Screetch takes the cake...awesome! 5 stars
8/26/02 WestcoastPunk Hard to fallow up after Swingers. But a solid movie still 3 stars
7/28/02 Adam Voorhees Cool flick but suffers in the glory of Swingers. Enjoy it for what it is, a good time. 5 stars
4/08/02 stoolie-bird as good as Swingers 4 stars
2/17/02 Clarance Fun,Entertaining, and Favreau + Vaughn = lots of laughs 4 stars
1/27/02 Adam Voorhees It ain't Swingers but its 20 times better than that toilet humour we have everywhere now. 4 stars
1/05/02 specialK shit 1 stars
12/29/01 Josh Leiber A MESS! Really Really awful movie for too many reasons to list here. 1 stars
12/04/01 Andrew Carden Vince Is The Greatest Actor Alive!!!! 5 stars
12/02/01 The Bomb 69 all over the place, some funny some annoying 3 stars
11/28/01 seldom scene this is no swingers this is stinkers!!!!!! 1 stars
10/11/01 Garrett Cain Annoyed me so much that I had to laugh. 4 stars
10/11/01 Catherine Schneider Better Than Swingers 4 stars
10/11/01 Katie witty and hilarious 4 stars
10/08/01 Mark Davidson A complete mess and total disappointment -- especially after the greatness of Swingers! 2 stars
10/08/01 Jonathan Peters the character acting was to die for 5 stars
9/03/01 KCobain I can't wait to see it again. It sort of grows on you. 5 stars
9/03/01 Butterbean Vaughn's big mouth and big forehead made the movie. 4 stars
8/20/01 Michael A. Not a home run, but a solid double. V V dominated,I enjoyed the milieu and support players. 4 stars
8/20/01 Rob Never saw Swingers, but thought this was hilarious! 4 stars
8/19/01 Boomshanka Favreau is a one trick pony. And a bad actor. 2 stars
8/15/01 FrayLo i loved swingers. I wanted to hit vince vaughn with a crowbar. Still a decent movie. 4 stars
8/15/01 Jake Loved it. Vaughn was hilarious. 5 stars
8/10/01 malcolm i wanted to whack Vaugh myself after about 20 mins. Puffy was OK, surprisingly 3 stars
7/28/01 Suzz Easily one half of this film is completely boring and uninvolving. I began looking at my 3 stars
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  13-Jul-2001 (R)


  28-Feb-2002 (M)

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