As I’m sure you can guess from the title because there was no irony employed here (unlike the genius improv group, The Harvard Sailing Team) this is a movie about New Year’s Eve. Normally this is where I would list who was in the movie, but in this case that would take way too much time and energy. Just imagine every actor you’ve ever seen in a movie. They are in this movie. The prince from Princess Bride? Yeah, he’s in it. Halle Berry? Yeah. Alyssa Milano? Yup. Melanie Griffith? Seth Myers? Jessica Biel? Hilary Swank? Robert DiNero? All yes. Sarah Jessica Parker? Abigail Breslin? Yes and yes (with a potential nosejob?? c’mon you’re like twelve. Get it together). McCauly Kulkin? I’m sure he’s in a crowd shot somewhere.
Thankfully I saw this movie after New Year’s Eve, so it didn’t color any expectations I had for the night. (I can get drunk and disappoint myself on my own, thank you very much). I saw it on a Friday night (no judgement) well into 2012 and was still not ready. Just imagine Love Actually minus all the character development, accents and heartwarming parts, then add about eight more storylines. Move it forward one month, and here you go. That’s this movie. Like, I honestly can’t even explain the plot to you because there is no plot. There are just incidents between people. The camera keeps cutting back and forth and the only thing grounding the scenes is the celebrity. You’re like, oh, right Ashton Kutcher is a disgruntled comic book artist stuck in an elevator. FOR THE WHOLE MOVIE. HE LITERALLY SPENDS EIGHT HOURS IN AN ELEVATOR. That’s not plot. That’s laziness. I saw Panic Room. I saw 127 Hours. I’m not saying you have to be jetting off to different locations to be interesting, or even move from one spot at all. But if you have a character you trap somewhere for the entire duration of a movie we sure as shit better learn something about them. Sadly, that does not happen.
This movie did have some funny parts. Seth Myers (who just looked like he was drowning the whole time) freaks out when his wife, Jessica Biel, who I don’t even think had a name in this movie- NO TIME FOR NAMES! NEXT SCENE! WE NEED MICHELE PFIFFER TO REACH AN EMOTIONAL CLIMAX IN SEVEN MINUTES. anyway, no-name preggers Jessica Biel’s water breaks in their apartment and Seth Myers starts calling for a cab and she goes, “I don’t think you’re gonna get one up here” to which he responds, “Right. We need to go down to where the cars live.” And Josh Duhmael, who is late for a party and getting a ride from a family in their RV (which houses a predictingly inappropriate Grandpa) is wearing a tuxedo. There’s one shot that just cuts to this little boy sitting next to him, “Just one trick please?” and Josh snapping, “I told you I’m not a magician!” That’s magical. But these moments are few and far between. And what they are far between is drivel. Pure as the driven snow.
I’m not a movie snob. I don’t need genius dialogue and swift but subtle intricacies in plot. I’m not trying to see Memento or the Machinist every time I walk into a theatre. But there is a basic level of understanding between filmmaker and viewer that was just not being met here. And I like ConAir. So I know my standards aren’t too high.
The best part of this movie was at the end (harhar) when they did outtakes of all the actors goofing around and messing up. Everyone was having so much fun, there was this compulsion to watch what was happening onscreen that you didn’t feel during the whole rest of the movie. The humor in these clips was carefree and self-deprecating which, ask any Jewish comedian, is key.
Overall, glad I saw it- there were some cute parts, some funny parts, it didn’t SUCK (like Valentine’s Day cough cough) but, would I ever see it again? Even if I lost all memory and I could only watched Holiday centered romantic group comedies for the rest of my life? Probably not.
Also, just: Ashton Kutcher, Lea Michele, that guy from Mad T.V, Josh Duhmael, Katherine Heigel, Jon Bon Jovi, Sofia Varga, Ludacris (who always tries to use his real name in movies- Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges didn’t fool anybody during Crash and it sure won’t fool anybody now) Michele Pfiffer and Zac Efron. And many more. I just don’t want to even try, I’m sure loading that IMDB page would crash my server.