A brilliant premise, a talented cast all playing themselves, or a twisted version, the opportunity for many belly laughs are there, so why doesn’t it work?
If you have a great idea but decide to pad it out with three music videos, it states clearly that you don’t have enough material to fill a film.
Having the Apatow set playing themselves during the end of the world is a cool concept but be wary, it could easily turn out cheap and tacky. Fortunately for them the majority of the scenes work, it just needed more polishing to lift it above a home movie that they could show to their mates.
Directed by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg and featuring a some very funny actors, Craig Robinson, Danny McBride, Michael Cera, and a bunch of cool cameos: Paul Rudd, Martin Starr, Kevin Hart, Aziz Ansari and David Krumholtz who gets by far the funniest scene (”you can hold onto my full weight?”).
There are plenty of very funny moments in this film; it just doesn’t gel as a whole; it’s half-baked. Rogen and Goldberg made a lot of money with this film and some would say that is success, in a way, yes, but artistically?
Ever since Freaks and Geeks the Apatow alumni have been making some very funny films and so the bar is high. Pineapple Express, Superbad, hell even Knocked Up, all better films than This is the End. But for every Superbad there are several Observe and Reports/Bad Neighbours.
The rapture ending didn’t work, far too Christian and shoe-horned in an otherwise unrelated world.
Finally, The Backstreet Boys. Oh dear. So unnecessary. It smacks of rich kids getting to live out their fantasies in a public arena and shouldn’t be allowed. If this was some Z-lister film that no-one but the teens would see, then fair play, but more should be expected from talent such as these.
3/5 (For the laughs, when they happened)