April 10, 2009 Observe And Report
Studio: Warner Bros. Rating: R for pervasive language, graphic nudity, drug use, sexual content and violence.
Seth Rogen abandons his warm and fuzzy screen persona to get into the skin of an iron-fisted head of mall security, who also happen to suffer from Bipolar Disorder.
In "Observe and Report" Ronnie Barnhardt (Rogen) dreams of the day when he can carry a gun as a real police officer. However for now, Ronnie's whole world is the Forest Ridge Mall. He roams the property dispensing a harsh brand of justice.
But when a flasher appears on the scene, exposing himself to female shopper, Ronnie vows to catch the pervert. He ramps up his efforts after his dream girl Brandi (Anna Faris) is victimized.
Competing with Ray Liotta's local detective to solve the mystery, Ronnie soon has much bigger problems. The mall falls victim to a thief who strikes at night, and it happens a number of times.
Threatened on two fronts, Ronnie starts to concentrate on his police cadet training. But that doesn't work out very well.
This is a very hard movie for me to get a handle on. I watched it with a group of friends and just about everybody had a different reaction.
There are plenty of laughs in this movie. It is absurd and extreme. But as a whole it doesn't hold up very well. It seems like its parts are much better playing out separately than they are as a finished product.
Although Ronnie's the hero he's not a very sympathetic character. He's angry and violent and he's a racist. His tough guy has a very narrow view of the world and it's usually wrong. His fellow security guards are worthless. His mom is a boozy alcoholic and the object of his affections won't give him the time of day.
But through a series of adventures Ronnie put his philosophy to the test. It might not be right but he definitely does things his way. As the female lead, Faris is beautiful playing the dumb blonde role to the hilt. Her makeup counter hottie isn't very interested in Ronnie, but when the two get together for a dinner date it ends in a way you won't believe. I don't want to ruin the surprise but trust me, it is by far the most squirm-inducing part of the movie.
This is not your average buddy comedy. It's a dark, twisted movie that is rude and raunchy. There is also a large amount of nudity, most of it being male.
Some will love it but I'm on the fence. I need my heroes to have at least some redeeming qualities. I'm not sure Ronnie fits the bill.
On my rating scale, "Observe and Report" hits a SINGLE.
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