I’ve decided to make this review public in its entirety.
Not as some conceited or boastful gesture, thinking my writing will benefit those in the Lafayette Theater Shooting, although the thoughts, prayers, positive vibes from all of us at Write to Reel go out to the 11 victims and their families.
Nor is this the proper place to have a discussion on the positives and negatives of bearing arms, however the horizon of that serious debate looms ever closer.
My intentions are simpler.
During difficult times such as this, we should focus on what brings us together and how we are all alike. Art, and all the mediums comprised therein, is one avenue to do so, and storytelling arguably more so.
So what are we to do when Terrorism lashes out at us, causing fear to strike at our hearts?
Do we stop flying?
Do we stop going to the movies?
Do we bar our doors and windows, hoping, praying that evil stays away?
We simply go on living our lives.
Keep laughing. Keep loving. Keep living.
1.) Marketability of the Idea
Are female comedians funny?
This argument never really made sense to me, especially when you consider all comedy is subjective.
Jokes and comedy are fun, but personally sitting and listening to a single person making jokes for twenty minutes, or more seems, like torture. (However, I must also admit I have very little interest in going to see bands live.)
There are two exceptions to my own rule. The first is Daniel Tosh, and the second is Amy Schumer.
Their brand of humor practically breaks my funny bone, and if the prices to their live events weren’t out of my humble price range, I’d gladly fork over the money to see them.
Amy Schumer’s hot right now, and romantic comedies are always in demand.
Pair that with Mr. Apatow, and who WOULDN’T want a piece of this project?
(Don’t Judd Apatow napkin ideas sell for millions on eBay yet?)
2.) Plot Stability
Romantic comedies have been done before, sure, but this story turns our preconceived notions upside down.
And not in a gimmicky way, either.
Stereotypes are switched in that our lead character is both female AND perfectly happy with one night stands.
Male characters on the other hand, are presented as individuals who actually want to get to know, and even marry, Amy.
This struck a chord with me since, before the boss locked me down, I was that “fall head over heels” on the first date kind of guy.
Compared to my friends in early adulthood that had no problem loving and leaving girls, which made me question whether I needed a change of perspective.
But, life goes on, and I learned we’re all individuals who live and love differently and it was nice to see this script flip the genre.
Okay…Enough deep shit. This is a raunchy comedy we’re here to discuss.
Amy, the character, has ZERO problem with one night stands.
Fakes falling asleep after orgasms to avoid reciprocating.
Even freaks out when a guy wants to go out with her again.
The script delivers most of the hilarity that should ensue, and the movie takes the script those last few steps to complete it.
Miss Schumer nails funny stories in the short term, but it’s clear she was a bit confused on how to elaborate those into a 120+ page script.
From her character showing up at a nursing home only to deliver a few lines and leave to forcing us to watch characters watch The Wire, there are multiple situations that are either never capitalized on or should be cut altogether.
And not that most of the scenes/situations aren’t funny, but with a movie, it’s a constant struggle to only include what’s driving the story onwards and upwards.
The seeds of drama and character building are in there.
Amy leans more towards her dad’s “lone wolf” mentality, and questions whether she can love and/or deserves to be loved in return.
The movie does a better job of demonstrating this struggle, but again, Amy’s frustration over committing to Aaron didn’t come out of left field in the script, and worked.
And then the funny shit.
Boyfriends who can’t talk dirty (another brilliant scene in the movie, thanks John Cena’s ripped buttocks!) to under age coworkers into some pretty kinky shit, this script made me chuckle out loud as I read.
3.) Quality of Characters
Whether based on her real life or not, the dysfunctional relationship between Amy, Kim, and Gordon (their father) works.
In the script, Amy is the baby (that’s switched in the film for some reason) and is closer to Gordon, leaving Kim to resent him for abandoning their mom for his “father of our nation” ways.
Gordon’s influence also leads to problems with Aaron, who genuinely loves Amy and wants to be with her.
All good and written in, which is key.
*SIDENOTE* Probably the most fantastic part of the film was our introduction to Colin Quinn’s Gordon, as he explains to his girls why he and their mother are getting divorced via a discussion on dolls.
*SIDENOTE’S SIDENOTE* Second to that scene is Lebron James’s performance. The second age old argument of “Lebron vs. Jordan” is settled when you watch his delivery in this film compared to Jordan’s in Space Jam. I have zero clue why Mr. James was in New York so much in this story, but didn’t care since he was fantastic in it. (And I don’t even like professional sports.)
4.) Dialogue and Description
The dialogue was hit or miss.
At times the subtext was there and witty, but at other times I had zero clue what characters were talking about. (Mainly the S’Nuff coworker banter.)
The script broke that “restaurant/bar chat” rule, but again these types of instances were trimmed or cut for the final product.
(Remember though, setting a scene in a restaurant, bar, coffee shop, etc. and just having YOUR characters sit around and talk is a serious issue. Can you show us that info in an insightful manner?)
The description on the other hand was a serious issue.
From page one, we’re assaulted with a wall of over explanation on who is there, what’s going on, and what’s in the background.
Remember here to only include the basics.
How do you know what’s important?
Simple. If it relates to the plot, include it.
(This is something the San Andreas script did surprisingly well.)
From the extensive page length, to over description, and even labeling scenes as “may not be needed” I almost felt like someone locked Amy Schumer in a room forcing her to write this story.
The kernel of hope in this is that she knows comedy, and included the basic story that allowed someone who specializes in directing films to focus on what was right, making formatting issues irrelevant.
The problem here is that you and I are not successful entertainers like Amy Schumer, so we have to play by the rules and adhere to basic formatting principles.
(We’re not Quentin Tarantino either, so just stop right there.)
6.) What I liked…
That the story made me laugh and demonstrated women can be philanderers too. (And that’s okay.)
7.) What needs work…
Setting aside the jokes/scenes that don’t directly relate to the plot’s escalation.
Rating: Read this to see that even professionals in the entertainment industry don’t get it right the first time. Then go see the movie as it’s essentially your civic duty.
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