Thursday, April 9, 2009

Observe and Report

Seth Rogen is back. For some that is not the best news ever, but I happen to have a soft spot in my heart for the lovable stoner. This time out he is a mall security guard in Observe and Report.
The first time seeing the preview, all that came to mind was the recent Kevin James debacle and I immediately cringed to see Rogen going down that road.
This one is definitely not a family friendly romp like Paul Blart was. Extremely not family friendly.
Eastbound and Down creator Jody Hill was at the helm of Observe and Report, which shows through in the awkward cockiness of the main character in each project.
Observe and Report serves to creep out the audience as much as it amuses. The bizarre lead character is surrounded by equally bizarre family and co-workers. Possibly it feels so creepy because it's disturbingly accurate how out of touch with reality Rogen's Ronnie Bernhardt is. Having worked in malls, I know how some (definitely not all, to be fair) security guards really have that over-inflated sense of self-importance. Many want to be cops but fell short for a variety of reasons and now see their "wet floor" cones and their walkie-talkies as substitutes for a badge and gun.
This movie is not as amusing as the usual Seth Rogen fare, but has it's own shining moments. The dynamic of Ronnie and his perpetually drunk mother is kind of charming and serves up more than a few laughs.
Overall, the creepy side of the movie outweighs the fun and leaves you feeling a little uncomfortable when leaving the theater.
Let's hope Rogen's upcoming Funny People will be better (and it really seems to have more going for it) and allow him to put Ronnie behind him.
Observe and Report gets a C.
--John Berry, Online Editor--

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