R-rated comedies in the summer cinema months have become quite the way to counter-program against big-budget tentpole flicks, but even these comedies have been hit or miss over the years, case in point being ‘The Hangover’ and ‘The Hangover Part III’. One of those is laugh out loud hilarious, while the other was beat the dead horse retread.
But every summer, we will get a handful of these risque comedies, and the first of 2014 is ‘Neighbors’ featuring r-rated comedy staple Seth Rogen, Zac Efron and Rose Byrne. Featuring a premise of a married couple who still think they are in their prime going toe-to-toe with a fraternity that moves in beside them, ‘Neighbors’ was bound to have some laughs.
And while there were indeed a fair amount of laughs during the film, ‘Neighbors’ fell prey to a desire to have an actual plot to itself, and one that was really never needed. In those moments where the film fell to its desire to tell a story, ‘Neighbors’ seemed to drag and kill momentum. It it was done to be a pallet cleanser to setup the next round of jokes and sight gags, it wasn’t really needed.
When ‘Neighbors’ embraces itself, it manages to follow on the heels of recent r-rated comedy smashes like ‘The Hangover’, ’21 Jump Street’ and last year’s ‘This Is The End’. However, it doesn’t push all the way through like those examples and will sit in a second tier of hits.
Still, it does enough to break up the early part of the summer that has been dominated by the likes of ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ and ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2’ to be a good couples choice film.
As always, for all this and more, feel free to follow me on Twitter at @kymayer. Cheers.