This one's worth skipping.

This one’s worth skipping.

Our heroes.

Our heroes.

Dull; feels nedlessly padded

Dull; feels nedlessly padded

Because Man of Steel has still not been released here, I went to see Shawn Levy‘s recent comedy The Internship with some mates the other day, hoping it would ease my hunger for a while. The drawback being that I can’t say that the film in question stirred a whole lot within me personally.

This could very well have been a fascinating picture, perhaps in a vein similar to The Social Network, but is instead a fairly bleak comedy starring two watered down actors and pulling jokes that rarely work or even make that much sense. While I may have enjoyed parts of it, I feel like I did not enjoy enough of it.

Billy McMahon (Vince Vaugh) and Nick Campbell (Owen Wilson) lose their jobs as skilled watch salesmen after their company goes out of business, prompting them to yearn for a new place to make money at. Billy, being the “smart one” of the duo, eventually signs both of them up for an internship at Google Inc. (you may have heard of it) of all places. They get through the interview without much problem, but getting to work at Google is going to be a bit harder than that.

Before being accepted, the interns need to perform a series of challenges that test their skills and they must do so in different groups. Billy and Nick are joined by an intensely irritating dork-meister named Lyle (Josh Brener), a snarky know-it-all named Stuart (Dylan O’Brien), a cheerful but awkward Indian girl named Neha (Tiya Sircar) and an Asian stereotype named Yo-Yo (Tobit Raphael). Their primary foe becomes Graham (Max Minghella) who is essentially the “jerky jock” stereotype of the flick, except that the only sport that gets played in this movie is a game of Muggle Quidditch. You know, it’s Quidditch but without brooms that can actually fly. It makes for a scene that’s just as exciting as it sounds. But this, my friends, is but one of many trials which our heroes must face before at last ascending to glorious Google-hood.

From left to right: Yo-Yo, Stuart, Lyle, Neha, Billy and Nick.

The group we’re supposed to root for, from left to right: Yo-Yo, Stuart, Lyle, Neha, Billy and Nick.

The protagonist group goes through the typical formula where they don’t get along at first and the kids don’t understand the adults and vice verca, eventually resulting in uncertainty that they’ll ever beat Graham and the “cool kids”. But we all know how it’s gonna go down, aren’t we? They’re gonna bond, they’re gonna learn from each other, they’re gonna see things from each other’s points of view, they’re gonna come together and save the day at the last minute; it’s not very surprising a story arc, is what I’m saying.

In addition to the team members and the various other side characters, watch out for cameos by John Goodman, Will Ferrell and even B.J. Novak of The Office fame. There’s also Aasif Mandvi as the no-nonsense judge of the competing interns. Oh, and Sergey Brin. Who is he? Oh no one. Just one of the co-founders of Google. That’s pretty cool, for what it’s worth.

The humour in The Internship seems to  have the sole settings of “mildly amusing”, “eye-rolling” and finally, “outright confusing”. There were some moments when I was not even sure if I was supposed to laugh or just sit there and bask in the all-around awkwardness. The biggest laughs in the movie involve a scene were Owen Wilson and Vince Vaugh are pranked into locating a man named Professor Charles Xavier and when Owen Wilson goes through some “jerk” stereotypes on his date with a Google emplyee played by Rose Byrne, on the latter’s request. There were probably more genuinely funny scenes than that, but at the moment I do not remember them.

Because of all the padded scenes that appear bereft of even an attempt at comedy (such as majority of the flashy strip club scene), characters that are either immemorable or annoying and all the gross-out jokes that fall flat, I am afraid that the good stuff in the movie is undermined by the bad. If you don’t go see this film, you won’t miss out on a cinematic gem. If you do go see it, you might end up in the same situation as me and my friends, where the projectionist accidentally ran the first 20 seconds of After Earth before realizing it was the wrong film. But I doubt it.

Down below is a trailer and my rating. More reviews will be posted “on the line” shortly.

2/5 whatever