And so it goes throughout the evening. Volume up so I can hear it until music or sound effects kick in and the walls shake then I get the dirty look from the wife so I fumble for the remote control to turn down the volume until the talking begins again and I can't hear so I grab the DVD remote to rewind the movie to make sure I haven't missed anything then I find the TV remote to turn up the volume and then proceed all over again. It's a vicious circle really and I'm pretty exhausted when it's all said and done. Needless to say the movie better be pretty damn good because, you know, I've put in the effort. It's like an expensive meal on a date. I better get a little something at the end to make it all worth while. Unfortunately Death At A Funeral was not worth while. I had a couple of friends tell me it was hilarious. That it was their new favorite movie. That it shouldn't be missed. And there I sat with remote controls in both hands and I waited for jokes to happen that never did. The best way I can describe Death At A Funeral is that it's like a very unfunny Seinfeld episode and honestly, that might be giving it too much credit. One of the main characters takes a pill that he thinks is a Valium but it's really Extacy, and so he acts like an idiot the rest of the movie. And not a funny idiot. More like an annoying idiot who makes you role your eyes every time he comes on screen. He says how green everything looks, grabs at some things that aren't there, and then he gets naked. And that's supposed to be funny, which it might be if it were playing Friday night at the Shady Grove Retirement Village. It's sad really because the character I'm mentioning is played by Alan Tudyk who I like very much and thought he was really good in the TV show Firefly. The movie is one series of misunderstanding after another with a couple of snafus mixed in for fun, or un-fun as it turns out.
I was told by my friend that her husband laughed really hard at one part which is strange because he's a pretty dry guy who rarely laughs out loud much. So I spent the entire movie waiting for that scene or string of scenes that were going to make me laugh, hoping that my incessant remote controlling would not be all for not. Did I mention there's a midget in the movie? He's played by Peter Dinklage. Yep, non-stop hilarity.
I guess I'm not surprised by all this. The movie was directed by Frank Oz who has been missing rather largely lately with The Stepford Wives and In & Out which was a complete disaster. Some will say so was Bowfinger and I might join them in saying that. I will say that with a couple of solid jokes and some more charming Michael Caine-like talent, Death At A Funeral could have been Dirty Rotten Scoundrels good which is to say that it wasn't a terribly funny movie, but at least it was a pleasant experience. But instead, I just got hand cramps with all the remote control action and I probably advanced my unavoidable carpal tunnel surgery by a couple of years. Damn.