Friday, November 7, 2014

"Sex Tape," A Raunchy Comedy Without Much Raunch or Comedy

Is Jason Segel playing older of Cameron Diaz playing younger? 
It’s getting harder and harder for me to watch blandly mediocre movies. If a film is  mediocre but has something interesting going on (acting, action, dialouge, editing, cinematography, anything) – cool. Hell, even if a film totally doesn’t work but really goes for it or has some worthwhile element – cool.

But movies like Sex Tape? Not cool.

Sex Tape is a would-be raunchy comedy from director Jake Kasdan that stars Cameron Diaz and Jason Segel as a married couple that looks to rekindle their sex life by making a sex tape, only to send it out to a number of friends and family due to a convoluted plot built around i-syncing. This is a return to formula of sorts – Kasdan last directed this duo in the successful Bad Teacher, a middling raunchy comedy that at least had to good conscience to be intermittently funny and charming.

This film has no such conscience. There’s nothing all that awful about Sex Tape, but the characterizations are surface level, the resolution is hooey and the comedy aspects just don’t hit at all. Although the particulars are different, the whole thing plays like a poor-man's version of Date Night, which was sort of a poor man's version of True Lies (or any number of movies built around a marriage vastly improving after a night of hijinks).

It’s a frustrating film, because the script has been partially credited to Segel and Nicholas Stoller, two funny and emotionally resonant collaborators who, even at their worst (The Five-Year Engagement), have been far more hit than miss.

A strong correlation can be made here between Sex Tape and a real sex tape. It probably seemed like a better idea during the planning stages, and it was likely a lot more fun to make the thing than it is to watch it. D