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The Cinematic Katzenjammer: Oct 9: The Five-Year Engagement


Oct 9: The Five-Year Engagement

"One year after meeting, Tom proposes to his girlfriend, Violet, but unexpected events keep tripping them up as they look to walk down the aisle together."
Directed by: Nicholas Stoller, Rated: R, 124 minutes

Jason Segel is a man everyone loves. He's a big, lovable lug and turns out great comedies after great comedies. He's also everyone's favorite man-child as Marshall on How I Met Your Mother and also resurrected the Muppets. With a hot-streak like that (with the exception of Gulliver's Travels), you have to know his luck would run out. Sadly, The Five-Year Engagement is that result. Even with its stellar cast with so many awesome people popping up in the smallest of roles, Five-Year falls flat after about thirty minutes. 

Even part time actress, part time goddess, Alison Brie can't save the film. 

In this seemingly never ending comedy, Segel plays Tom, an on-the-rise sous chef of a very nice restaurant in San Francisco. His girlfriend, Violet (Emily Blunt), is a psych graduate looking to break into the teaching game, waiting for the chance to be a professor at The University of Michigan. Tom proposes to Violet after a year of dating, and the two are eager to get married. However, Violet gets into the program in Michigan, and the couple leave San Fran, putting their wedding on hold a couple of years. What continues is event after event that postpones their wedding even longer, and the two's relationship is tested. Throw in a bunch of unnecessary conflict, way-too idiotic behavior, and gross out moments that don't fit in with the rest of the film, and The Five-Year Engagement is more puzzling than it is entertaining. 

Apparently living in Michigan for two years not only ages you ten times, but makes you grow very unfunny facial hair...He also becomes really obsessed with hunting deer..

This is a film you really want to love but end up almost hating. Jason Segel and Emily Blunt are both decent in their roles, both bringing their own kinds of charm and even working really well together. The movie really does start off well, and seeing the two work off of each other shows promise, leaving you hopeful of what's to come. Unfortunately, after about thirty minutes, the script implodes. Everything and everyone tries too hard and the bulk of the humor (attempts) results in people getting hurt, blood being shed, or Jason Segel prancing around naked. It really sucks because the script is actually written by Segel and Nicholas Stoller (who both wrote Forgetting Sarah Marshall together). It's as though they just gave up after the start. However, the few scenes shared between Segel and Chris Pratt (who plays his best friend) are amazing, and you can tell the scenes are improvised. I only wish that more of the film was like this, as it's become a trademark of Segel and friends. 

Pratt Pratt Pratt steals every scene he's in.

Skip The Five-Year Engagement with everything you have. It's easily one of the biggest disappointments of the year and a black eye on Segel's career as both a writer and actor. I can't say the movie was dead on arrival, because the talented cast and talent involved would tell you otherwise, but it really fails to deliver. The script is laughably bad, to the point of making you want to turn it off, and the entire movie drags on for a staggering 124 minutes, a run-time you should never see on a comedy. Oh, and there's a continued reference to donuts throughout the film that's neither funny nor smart and by the time it's all over, you want to never eat a sugared fried dough ring again. Yes, just watching this movie has made me less creative. Dammit. 

The Good:
the very few improvised scenes between people that are clearly friends in real life
The Bad:
a script that completely gives up after half an hour and then drags on for eternity with horrible jokes, stale gross out humor, and stupid situations
The Ugly:
actually sitting through the entire 124 minutes even though you know how bad it is, but chugging along because you have a false hope it'll all get better...which it never does

Overall: 5.1/10


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At October 9, 2012 at 9:19 PM , Blogger alienxphile said...

Agreed. 124 minutes of BLAH! 4.0/10.0

At October 9, 2012 at 9:21 PM , Blogger Nick said...

Glad to see that someone agrees with me lol. It was a struggle to get through.

At October 10, 2012 at 6:46 AM , Blogger Ben Hayward said...

Yes yes yes, I love you for writing about how average this is.

I wrote up a review ( a while back and my friends completely disagreed with me.

What I absolutely hated was the way they handled the Blunt/Ifans affair. Not only did she treat Jason Segel pretty badly, dragging him across the country and seeing he was unhappy - she went and cheated on him! Then, she shacks up with the guy she cheated on him with. It made me mad.

It's a film where you're supposed to root for the couple to get back together but I lost complete interest once Emily Blunt was revealed to be a bit of a bitch.

Sorry for the rant. The film affected me as you can see!

At October 10, 2012 at 9:23 AM , Blogger Nick said...

I agree with you completely. After the incident with her character, you completely abandon ship with any love for her. The whole thing was just so poorly written it deserves a slap across the face.

At October 10, 2012 at 12:50 PM , Blogger Mavi@filmscope said...

Didnt hate it, thought its was fairly funny in parts except you are right 124 is ridiculous could lose 40 mins in middle np...

At October 10, 2012 at 1:35 PM , Blogger Nick said...

Certainly. Just too much eh for too much blah.

At October 10, 2012 at 2:59 PM , Blogger Sati. said...

I completely agree, the film was very bad and it was way too long. I rated it even lover than you did and gave it 3/10 only because of Brie and Pratt - they were really funny and it's a shame the movie didn't revolve around their characters.

At October 10, 2012 at 3:10 PM , Blogger Nick said...

I was thinking that as well, even wondering if a spin-off would work. But then I thought that the film would turn out like this turd so I took back any ideas lol.

At October 15, 2012 at 4:30 PM , Anonymous Eric said...

Yeah, you nailed this one, Nick. I think I gave it a 5/10 as well. Painfully mediocre, given the strong cast involved.

At October 15, 2012 at 4:31 PM , Blogger Nick said...

Yeah... painful is a good word.


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