Movie ReviewsRough Night – A Derivative, Unfunny Comedy

Keith NoakesJune 16, 2017

There aren’t enough female films out there so a comedy with a great cast of females from the writers of Broad City, a comedy that I haven’t seen but have heard is good, can be good.

Synopsis: Five best friends from college reunite 10 years later for a wild bachelorette weekend in Miami. Their hard partying takes a hilariously dark turn when they accidentally kill a male stripper. Amidst the craziness of trying to cover it up, they’re ultimately brought closer together when it matters most. (Sony Pictures)

Starring: Scarlett Johansson, Kate McKinnon, and Jillian Bell

Writers: Lucia Aniello and Paul W. Downs

Director: Lucia Aniello

Rating: R

Running Time: 101mins


This may not come as a surprise to most of you but just like most comedies this century, you’ve pretty much seen everything in the trailer. From the trailer, it is easy to see parallels to such films as Bridesmaids (a film I haven’t seen) and the Hangover series. This was because this film itself is not new or original whatsoever as it borrows heavily from those previously mentioned films. This fact could be fine in most cases, however, this story was just so unoriginal that there was little to no enjoyment to be had.

The story was promising, revolving around a bachelorette party featuring a great cast but the main problem with the film was that it wasn’t fun to watch at all and was more of a chore. The derivative story was predictable, the comedy rarely landed (you can count it on one hand), and it was hard to care about the majority of the characters, focusing on the story rather than developing the characters. The only characters who ever stood out were Jess (Johansson), the bride to be and Pippa (McKinnon), Jess’ Australian friend.

The story was driven by the main characters going from contrived situation to contrived situation who were either dumb and/or high on drugs most of the time but it was just hard to care since very little of it was funny and the dialogue was cringe-worthy. The only interesting thing going on was the concurrent bachelor party going on with Jess’ fiancee Peter (Paul W. Downs) and his significantly less rowdy friends that ultimately didn’t last very long as he went on an outrageous adventure to try and save her.

The film tried so hard to be edgy and it all came off as forced. It definitely earns its R-rating though with its use of language and dirty jokes but were mostly gratuitous and didn’t work so those expecting some uber-feminist film may be disappointed although that’s not the reason you were watching this in the first place. The film is also slightly too long and could have cut out some of the story and would have still worked just fine.

The best part of the film was the chemistry between the cast, however, that did not necessarily translate to the performances. They tried to do their best with the mediocre script but could not overcome it. The worst of them was surprisingly Johansson as Jess. She did not look comfortable at all here for whatever reason. Maybe it was because she didn’t fit in this sort of film. McKinnon stole a lot of scenes as Pippa with her Australian accent. Bell as Alice spewed most of the forced humor. Ilana Glazer and Zoe Kravitz were okay but there wasn’t much to their characters.

Overall, this was a derivative, unfunny comedy that was mostly a chore to watch thanks to a mediocre script that was gratuitously outrageous, and didn’t take advantage of its great cast.

Score: 4/10

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