Sunday, October 19, 2008

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist

I love Michael Cera. Everything from Arrested Development to Superbad and his various online shorts. I thought that might be enough to make this movie somewhat entertaining. Nope.

Nick and Norah is a dull, dull movie. Almost none of the humor hits. Michael Cera is given nothing to work with, as if the screenwriters were solely relying on his trademark awkwardness to get by. The female lead (Kat Dennings from 40-Year-Old Virgin), while good, is also given nothing to do except awkwardly try to connect with Cera's character. There is never any believable connection.

When they finally do wind up together, it seems it's more because their other options are so terrible rather than any true attraction the two of them share. There just isn't any chemistry. The only reason we're ever given for her attraction to him is that she really likes the mix CD's he made for his ex-girlfriend.

Every character in the movie is so two-dimensional that every moment is like watching boring people talk about how bored they are. There are three gay characters (friends and band mates of Cera's) that only exist to provide the diminishing recurring joke of coming up with a new name for their gaycore band. In what was probably an effort by the screenwriters to avoid gay character cliches, the characters are so stripped of personality that they are practically invisible. And they're still cliches. Go figure.

This also has to be the most uncomfortable I've ever been in a PG-13 movie. Part of this is because I watched it with my parents, true. But what other PG-13 movie contains a scene in which a creepy homeless man asks the lead character if he's ever done it with a dog? Also contained in the movie: a character that spends the entire movie drunk and puking, never-ending frank sexual discussions among teenagers, and a subplot about the lead girl having her first orgasm as Cera fingers her on a couch (discretely off screen, but entirely audible). Come on! It just makes me feel old that it bothered me at all.

I can't really think of anyone I could recommend this movie to. But the 15-year-old girls sitting behind us seemed to like it. Idiots.

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