With references from the classic action TV series MacGyver, MacGruber is a popular Saturday Night Live (SNL) sketch gone really MacAwful in its movie version.
MacGruber is a victim of its own low level spoofs about cliché-laden action blockbusters. The script is bad, the mounting of the shots are terrible, the lines are horrible, the main man’s movie acting is annoying. It’s 90 minutes of painful, stressful viewing. You can only hope to find something to laugh about, that is, if you can take mindless growls and brainless comedy.
Will Forte’s live acts and crazy sketches may work, but as a film actor in this flick, he is totally out of it. It’s like he chews every wordy, tiresome line he has on the script and never grinds it outside the lip service. I’m not sure if other people like this type of acting… personally, it’s almost incomprehensible how this movie even got released (yes, it’s that bad for me). It is exasperatingly bad that I almost didn’t finish the movie. The only thing that required me to stay: having to make a credible review for it means I should sit down and endure it, and at the very least, compensate on the feeling of wasted time by writing something honest and reasonable out of the awful viewing experience.
It just doesn’t work. Some brainless flicks tend to induce some laughs amidst all the scene clichés and formulaic performances. But with MacGruber, every aspect of the production doesn’t provide anything impressive. (Well, the effects are considerably descent for its package).
MacGruber neglects to incorporate the kind of fun a sketch can provide in movie language. It doesn’t have the essential elements to bring in something competent enough on screen. Everything looks so amateur. All the dim-witted schemes fall flat in such a predictable fashion.
A more creative and imaginative storytelling from its director could have elevated this movie as a watchable popcorn fare. Even for its mere farcical intentions to be crudely vulgar, obscenely foul-mouthed and downright dumb, its improper mix still renders it so poorly. Its lowbrow comedy and bearing as a “retro pastiche” don’t really bring anything credibly fun and nostalgic. While it seems meant to exude a spirit of Eighties action, it is short of good characters, imagination, story and comedic ammo. Its long dry stretches in movie form totally malfunction.
Screenwriters Will Forte and John Solomon and director Jorma Taccone only bring strings of scatological jokes with all the incompetently childish brand of mindless humor. The performances merely say and do dumb things on screen without the “movie flick x-factor” needed to make moviegoers appreciate them.
Kristen Wiig as Vick St. Elmo and Ryan Phillippe as Lt. Dixon Piper struggle to make their descent performances as the movie’s saving grace. But with Will Forte not keeping up with the necessary appeal and acting, not even the good enough stereotypical Val Kilmer character Dieter Von Cunth can put enough fuel and spark of fun to this MacGruber offer… not even its WWE wrestler cast members including Dalip Singh (“The Great Khali”), Glen Jacobs (“Kane”), Paul Wight (“The Big Show”), Mark Henry, Chris Jericho and Antonio Banks (“MVP”) can help it get outside the disposable action-comedy category.
MacGruber is a naughty throwaway, a throwaway of time and money. Skipping it means a better opportunity to make good use of your time.