Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Where in the world is ... oh, nevermind


Where in the World is Osama Bin Laden? is the second docu feature from Morgan Spurlock. His first film Super Size Me was a film with a place and time. But WITWIOBL feels like a dollar short and a day late with its whimsical light tone and brief snippets of actual humor, especially after such hard hitting Iraqi related docus as No End in Sight, Taxi From the Dark Side and upcoming Standard Operating Procedure.
WITWIOBL takes the viewer with Spurlock as he travels to the Middle East. The plot wavers on whether he will find Bin Laden before his wife has a baby. The one thing that makes sense in the film is when Spurlock asks a relative of one of the 9/11 hijackers about the video of the hijacker in question saying, yes, he did it. The relative merely states that in America we have the technology to digitally make an image have words coming out of its mouth that weren't originally there. His example is the talking pig in Babe. At least that barnyard tale traveled well.
88 Minutes is the kind of potboiler that gets bad reviews in principal, believe me when I say that there were news reports of how bad this film was from reporters who hadn't seen it. It's the kind of film that if Clint Eastwood had done it, and he has (think Blood Work), it would get a pass. But with Al Pacino the wolves bare their teeth. 88 Minutes came out in Europe a year ago and is already on DVD in many countries.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall would stand own its own two legs if it wasn't associated with Judd Apatow. But there's no way this film compares to Superbad. Save the "A film from the producer/director of ..." for classics and sell this film for what it is. A pretty competent mix of genitalia humor and bedroom tomfoolery. Apatow (the film's producer) has a strong ensemble of talent that follow him on project after project. In other words, Paul Rudd, Jonah Hill and Bill Hader pop up often enough to help Forgetting Sarah Marshall surf over the rough spots.

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