Where does one start with this film? If you’ve caught even the smallest fragment of critic talk on this picture, you know it’s been labeled as everything from star-studded to vulgar. The cast contains some of Hollywood’s most prominent names like Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Richard Gere, Naomi Watts and Kate Winslet just to name a few…and that’s literally just a few of the actors in the prominent cast. I made it a point not to look up the reasoning behind the film’s rather bland title, just to see if the film itself would unveil the mystery. It never did give that up, but where it kept quite on a title, it went all out everywhere else.
Movie 43 is essentially comprised of multiple stories that make up the film as a whole. These stories come from the mind of one man’s pitch (Dennis Quaid) for a new movie idea as he’s hoping to create his work with several shorts. Some of the skits are hilarious, some reach the other end of the spectrum and are just flat out lame and anything but entertaining. In the middle are those that show the promise of a laugh but drag on too long for the viewer to care, ultimately killing the vibe, diluting a laugh to a sigh and causing you to hope the next short approaches sooner rather than later.
This movie not only pushes the envelope of political correctness, it lights it on fire and has an open flame waiting for the next one. For instance, in the trailer we see Halle Berry’s date dare her to blow out the candles of a blind kid’s birthday cake before the kid gets the chance to. Then there’s iBabe, the music device, ala iPod, that is a full size replica of a very attractive, very nude female. That’s just the tip of the iceberg. We can talk about the language, but if you’re shocked by that, I’d stay far away from this film because there’s a whole lot more offensive content here taking place other than just what’s being said.
Some of the skits, like I said, are rather lame. The one that closes out the film, featuring Josh Duhamel and Elizabeth Banks and a perverted cartoon cat, is so mind-numbingly awful that it was a poor choice to close out the film. Shortly before it, however, is the short featuring Terrence Howard as a 1950′s high school basketball coach. This was by far and away the best sequence Movie 43 offered up. IndieWire.com described the scene; ”It’s the first all-black basketball team to host a championship, in the ’50s… They’re playing an all-white team, and they’re terrified. Terrence Howard has to convince these 6’8” black guys that they’re better than these 5’9” white guys.”
Coach: You guys are twenty-five-and-oh!
Player: Yeah coach, but that was against all black teams.
Coach: That’s the point! Y’all gonna kill those caucasians!
The rest of the dialogue in that scene was priceless and stole the show in my opinion. The ”Super Hero Speed Dating” segment with Jason Sudeikis as Batman and Justin Long as Robin runs a close second. I’d give the basketball scene alone a score of 4.5 out of 5, but when taking the whole movie into account, well that score starts to slide south a little. If you’re looking for a good family-oriented bit of programming, I don’t know how the hell you ended up here. If you want an obnoxious and raunchy hour-and-a-half film to tap into those forbidden recesses of your brain, then Movie 43 is the flick for you.