Sunday, 25 January 2015

The Interview

Dave Skylark (James Franco) hosts Skylark Tonight, a chat show that focuses on the wired side of the news. The producer, Arron Rapoport (Seth Rogan), wishes to produce a serious report to boost the credibility of the chat show. The ideal opportunity seems to present itself when it is discovered that the Supreme leader of North Korea, Kim Jong un (Randall Park), is a big fan of Skylark Tonight. Using Skylark Tonight's popularity with the Supreme Leader, Arron manages to get an interview with the leader of the secretive nation. The CIA use this opportunity to instruct the journalists to assassinate the dangerous Kim Jong un.

The hacking of Sony Pictures and threats issued surrounding release of the Seth Rogan and James Franco comedy vehicle turned what was expected to be a moderate success into a film that made the headlines right across the world  and thus had the effect of giving it endless publicity. It turns out that hacking Sony Pictures gave the film the publicity it doesn't deserve simply because The Interview is such a forgettable film that audience members who have had it wiped from their memory within forty minutes of seeing the film if it wasn't for the threats made if the film were to be released. The furore, hacking and terrorist threats surrounding the film merely bought about the Streisand Effect by effectively boosting publicity to unprecedented levels of which the film's quality was never going to match.

The film itself is a complete non entity because of the poor script which doesn't give Seth Rogan and James Franco (who do share a good chemistry) much to work with. Dan Sterling's belief that the sight of Kim Jong un smoking weed is hysterically funny means that The Interview descends to the type of humour that is found in the Harold and Kumar movies which, truth be told, are not the height of American satirical comedy. Lacking in effective satirical bite the film's overreliance on crass jokes is problematic because the majority of them are not particularly funny. Fault also lies with Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogan as the film is slow to get going and only improves once Dave Skylark and Aaron Rapoport arrive in North Korea and meet the supreme leader.

If it wasn't for all the major events surrounding the release of the film, The Interview would have had a moderate financial success during the holiday season and despite the success it would have been completely forgotten about. Instead the hacking of Sony Pictures and demands to censor the picture only increased the movie's publicity and hyped it up beyond anything anyone could anticipate. So, when it turned out to be as poor as it did, you are left wondering what all the fuss was about.


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