Friday, May 1, 2009

Pineapple Express

"Pineapple Express" is a pot comedy that's pretty hilarious, produced by Judd Apatow and directed by David Gordon Green. Written by Seth Rogen and his writing partner Evan Goldberg, the movie is so stupid it provides for nonstop laughter while maintaining the requirements of the "marijgenre." Although its structure is pretty thin, it's easily one of the funniest films of 2008. Seth Rogen is Dale, a high man with a job as a process server. He goes to Saul (James Franco, nominated for a Golden Globe), who supplies him with a rare kind of weed called Pineapple Express. He gets it passed down from Ted Jones (Gary Cole), who's in cahoots with a cop (Rosie Perez) and at war with "Asians." Dale sees Ted and Carol the cop kill an enemy and they see him see them kill the enemy, so they believe he is working with the Asians. They identify him by the pot he's smoked and left on Ted's property. Thus begins an outrageous diversion that kept my laughing for its entire length. The main supplier of the idiocy is Red, played by North Carolinian Danny McBride, who plays a fair-weathered, moderately earnest friend of Saul who also deals joints. The fight scene between Rogen, Franco, and McBride is perhaps the best scene in the film. Rogen overdoes most scenes, and they turn out amazingly. This is all great, but what about the actual movie itself? It's pretty mediocre, the plot structure. Nothing makes any sense, but I guess that's the point. The performances embellish this. Rogen and Franco strike it up nicely, as does McBride. The villains are extremely one-dimensional, and they are not, until the final minutes, in a scene longer than 30 seconds. It's all in good fun, though. With any more depth, the silliness of the movie might wear off, just like the effects of toking up. When you try to go deep, the plot's as fuzzy as smoke. B

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