Monday, 26 September 2016

Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising (2016)

OK seriously what is it with these American sorority/fraternity things? entire movie genre is based on these 'societies'. Certain actors have become famous for their roles and links to the frat house genre. Certain years in the past have been dominated with movies based on these outrageous 'clubs', and quite frankly, to a Brit such as myself it all makes no sense. Yeah we have similar things in the UK, I guess, does the students room count? halls of residence? having a nice chat with tea and biscuits once a week?? Yeah sure UK students get rowdy and wild with their boozed up parties, pub crawls, house parties, clubbing etc...But this entire notion of a large house actually being owned by a group of students, who then abuse it however they want, with no regard for the surrounding residents, does this actually happen in the US?? is this a real thing??? What the fuck is all this Delta, Kappa, Sigma, Alpha, Zulu, Foxtrot bollocks?! OK, OK...I know its all Greek terminology and I have read up on why its used...but it still makes no bloody sense. Forgive me but the whole damn thing just sounds like Scouts for drunken, doped up teens wanting to fornicate with each other, well at least that's the impression you get from movies like this.

Moving on, the plot...its exactly the bloody same as the first friggin' movie, the end. No joke, the Radner's (Rogen and Byrne) are back and now trying to sell their house, but guess what! Go on have a guess...did you guess? yes you're right, a bunch of teenage girls have set up a sorority in the house next door, oh the hilarity! Oh and the real stinger, its the same house they had trouble with last time with the guys in the fraternity...oh the sweet irony! So quite simply the Radner's need to keep everything cool for the next 30 days (escrow) before their house gets sold. In other words the Radner's are praying that the new sorority will keep things low-key in the meantime until those 30 days run out. Guess what...go on take a guess...

So as I mentioned in my review of the first movie, the problem for me personally here (apart from the sheer lack of imagination) is the fact that most of what you see is uncomfortable. In other words, its not really very amusing to watch people trying to look after their property, sell it, expand it...whatever, when youths are vandalising it with jokes that often go too far. I'm not saying there are no funny elements to this film and I'm not saying I'm a prude with no sense of humour (gulp!). What I'm saying is, seeing a group of youngsters breaking into a nice house, steal items, ransack, vandalise, destroy things and basically try to ruin a families life out of spite, isn't really an enjoyable thing to watch. I kept thinking how horrible it would actually be if I were in the same situation, if I was trying to sell my house but mobs of youths next door were preventing me from doing so and I was unable to stop it. The thing is I'm sure shit like this happens in reality and I'll bet its very distressing. So as I pointed out in my review of the first flick, this movie comes under the same umbrella as the movie 'Identity Thief' for me, the subject just isn't particularly funny to watch because it could really happen and it would be bloody awful. Admittedly you could say that about anything but things like this are probably more likely within reality.

As for what you see, well its all the same shit in a nutshell, accept its girl related. So instead of lots of visual gags surrounding cocks, dildos...just general male related toilet humour, you have similar things but with a female twist. So at one point the girls all throw their blood stained tampons at the windows of the Radner's house, leaving big splodgy blood splatters. The perfect example of a visual gag that is just a step too far and genuinely disgusting. Another, as I already hinted at, was breaking into the Radner's house, clearing it, then selling all their stuff in a garage sale for peanuts. Again, just not funny, in fact I found that really uncomfortable and it made me kinda mad because I kept thinkin' what I'd do in that situation. The epitome of unfunny attacks by the teenage girls was again breaking into the Radner's house, stealing the duos mobile phones, changing some numbers around, and then trying to get them to break up by sending fake texts. Dunno who wrote this script but Jesus! these are nasty pranks! The fact that this prank actually leads to Rogen's character travelling to Australia, without even attempting to find his other half first, just shows the utter stupidity of both the movie and the writers. Because of course you'd travel across the globe on a whim without confirming anything first, being a dumb comedy isn't really an excuse here sorry.

Seriously the whole idea of this movie is just so utterly pointless, this is made even more clear with the finale where basically everyone quits. All the girls run out of money (buckets of money is a genuine currency rate here it seems, yes I literally mean a bucket full of money), fall out and decide to leave the house. But to stop this the Radner's decide (after all the shit they've been put through) to help the girls out so they can stay in their sorority house. OK sure the deal helps the Radner's out of a bind too, but surely anyone in the same position would let the girls get kicked out simply out of sweet revenge, I would. I've also not seen a movie so utterly engrossed with weed for some time, this movie is stuffed with it, hell the plots almost all about flippin' weed! I remember frat house flicks back in the 80's were generally all about booze and smut but these days its all about smoking weed apparently.

The first movie had the saving grace of being somewhat original, to a degree, literally a slither of originality, and utilising a fresh-faced cast in Rogen, Franco and Efron. Sure the whole idea wasn't brilliant but the cast just about kept it afloat with the odd highlight, but overall it was still poor. Well this film has no saving grace, its got no originality, no fresh-faced cast and virtually no highlights unless you wanna count Rogen looking and chuckling like Fozzi the bear as he basically pratfalls his way through a weed obsessed frat flick he's too old to star in (I can see how some might like this). And no not even Efron's oiled up nipples and biceps can save this, although his dumb jock persona still does work at times, OK so one minor highlight. In short, they've basically taken the first movie and done all the same shit but replaced the wild male teens with wild female teens, sorority instead of fraternity, its that simple. If you liked the first I guess you'll like this, anyone else, pass.