THE INTERVIEW || 2014, USA || Comedy || Directed by – Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg / Produced by – Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, James Weaver / Screenplay by – Dan Sterling, Evan Goldberg, Seth Rogen / Music by – Henry Jackman / Editing by – Zene Baker, Evan Henke / Starring – Seth Rogen, James Franco, Randall Park / Running time: 112 mins.
Whether it was a publicity stunt or not, The Interview became one of the most controversial films ever. Even before its release, it angered the North Korean government and inspired a terrorist group named “Guardians of Peace” threatened to attack any cinema that would screen it. The reason came from its killer motives: an imagined planned assassination to the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (Randall Park).
Dave Skylark (James Franco), the host of a celebrity talk show, is to carry out the assassination during his interview with the dictator, which will mark the 1000th episode of his show. He is also, possibly, the worst man for the job: a childlike, irresponsible, inappropriate, loudmouthed party animal with a shallow sense of morality. His producer (Seth Rogen) goes with him for the trip.
Nevertheless, the controversy died down pretty soon. This was not only because of the film’s blockade – The Interview became one of the most successful releases on VOD of all time. It is because Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s film is simply neither that funny, nor particularly edgy, despite its provocative premise. Had it been made in a shameless, Borat type of way, perhaps the controversy might have been justified. But the film is rather silly, and the only moments of enjoyment result in the interactions between Hollywood buddies Rogen and Franco, perhaps because it genuinely seems that at least the two of them are having fun, even if no one else is.
The ironic twist, however, is that Kim Jong-un in the film comes out looking pretty good – certainly better, on a human and moral level, than most other characters of the film. – 3/5
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