Starring Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn, Jonah Hill
Directed by Akiva Schaffer
With most movies, things like believable characters, a well structured plot, consistent story development, matter to the entertainment of that film. Comedies can benefit from these things, but if they can make people laugh, they can get away with a lot of things that other movies can't. But that's the catch; if people aren't laughing, everything else wrong with a film becomes blatantly obvious and continues to drag down an already weak production. Even impressive comedic talent can't help if the humor is lacking.
And as you can probably tell from my 2/5 Abiding Dudes rating, The Watch is just not that funny.
The Watch finds Evan (Ben Stiller), a general manager of Costco in the suburbs, who is just way too much in love with his town. He starts various clubs around the town to keep involved and busy, as he and his wife Abby (Rosemarie DeWitt) struggle to have a child. Things change when his night security guard is brutally murdered at Costco,which inspires him to start the Neighborhood Watch, to which Bob (Vince Vaughn), Franklin (Jonah Hill) and Jamarcus (Richard Ayoade) reply. And while they each have their own agenda for joining, they soon unite in one purpose; to find aliens that are living among us and plotting against us.
There are some decent scenes that will make you laugh, but it's basically a 100-minute long dick and semen joke. And once I saw that Seth Rogen was one of the writers, it all made sense. The story literally derails itself several times for drawn out jokes that overstayed their welcome three scenes ago. Since you're not laughing, you then find yourself wondering about the glaring plot holes and holes in these supposed intelligent aliens' logic.
I was even more disappointed in the fact that I'm usually a pretty big fan of Ben Stiller and Jonah Hill. I can take or leave Vince Vaughn, but I was disappointed in all three (though they all have their moments). Even Will Forte's performance is way over the top and unnecessary, and I typically like him too.
But the real star that does a great job in delivering even the worst of plot turns is Richard Ayoade. If you like him in shows like The IT Crowd, you'll enjoy him here; he proves he's more than ready for
the transition to film. But since he's not as well known as most of the cast, he's terribly under-used.
Perhaps the biggest letdown of this film was the fact it had so much potential. There was a lot of room for story-based humor and action-based humor, but it clinged so close to the male anatomy that it seems like no one really cared that there was a pending alien invasion. The same effect could have been achieved without trying to have any sort of plot.
Oh well. Watch it at your own risk.