Comedy really is subjective.
When The Interview was about to come out, I was slightly interested because I loved This is the End and like that style of humor, and this movie looked a bit like that one – a bizarre film that takes place in a hyper realized version of real life. Then something happened and the movie got blown way out of proportion.
Of course, everyone knows the story of the North Korean hackers who broke into Sony emails and outed many in the company of some pretty inflammatory statements. Then, they threatened more if the “act of terrorism” that is known as The Interview was not shelved and destroyed. After what looked like an instance where Sony bowed down to the terrorist threats, Sony released it on the Internet on demand and now it is on Netflix.
So, is it worth all the press that it received?
No, it really wasn’t. Nor was it worth the troubles that North Korea went through to bury it. Honestly, it never deserved any more publicity than that of another comedy from Seth Rogen, James Franco and director Evan Goldberg. It was a low brow comedy that was at times very, very funny.
Warning – you have to love lowbrow humor to enjoy this movie. As I said, comedy is subjective and it just so happens that I love lowbrow humor. For me, this movie wasn’t as good as This is the End, but it was a very funny movie that made me laugh a lot. That is all comedies are meant to do.
Sorry North Korea.
Dan Sterling, the screenwriter, worked on both South Park and The Daily Show, so that right there should tell you all you need to know about the real-world humor surrounding The Interview’s politics. Hell, Team America: World Police, attacked Kim Jong Un’s dad a decade ago and no one seemed to care about anything but the puppet sex. The son and his government just seem a lot more sensitive about it. This movie is not worth the protests that were taken against it.
Dave Skylark (James Franco) is a talk show host who deals with celebrities and scandals. Examples of his work includes breaking the fact that Eminem is actually gay, Rob Lowe is actually bald and Matthew McCaughey might or might not have had sex with a goat. However, his best friend and producer Aaron (Seth Rogen) wants more from his journalistic career and Dave agrees to more serious interviews.
That is when Dave learns that Kim Jong Un is a huge fan of his show. Believing this could be the interview that gets people to take them seriously, Aaron is able to convince the North Korean government to allow the interview, as long as Un only answers questions that he creates. When Aaron and Dave arrive in North Korea, they are shown happy children and grocery stores and begin to wonder if the U.S. has been lying the entire time about the state of North Korea.
This is a tough situation for them because they have been contracted by the CIA to assassinate Kim Jung Un while they are there for the interview. When Kim Jung Un and Dave strike up a friendship and realize that both men have daddy issues, Dave starts to reconsider the mission to kill his new friend.
The protests for The Interview called it an act of terrorism, because it showed the US heading over to North Korea to assassinate a foreign ruler. Now, it wasn’t as bad as when South Park: Bigger, Longer, Uncut showed the assassination of his dad or Saddam Hussein going to Hell and becoming Satan’s lover, and that movie received on Oscar nomination. What is most interesting is that, while Kim Jong Un was shown to be an evil man in the movie, he was also shown to be human and was actually pretty cool for most of the movie. However, showing him as human was a problem for people who worship him as a God.
That caused protests for what is nothing more than a low brow comedy. There is nothing in it that is offensive in the grand scheme of things and anger at Sony for making it is misplaced. At the end of the day, this is a comedy about two guys sent on a mission and getting drunk, stoned and having sex before having to run for their lives out of a war zone. If you find Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg’s movies funny, you will like The Interview.
It’s just not as controversial and inflammatory as the news would make you believe.