Review: Seeking a Friend for the End of the World (Scafaria, 2012)
Who doesn’t like a good apocalypse movie? There’s always something fun about why the world is falling apart and how society deals with the chaos. Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, however, stays away from all the dark stuff and generally colors within the lines. It’s one in a long line of recent films that capitalizes on a trendy topic (e.g., vampires, zombies, apocalypse, superheroes, time travel) but isn’t actually about that topic.
Perhaps as a consequence, it was shatteringly vapid. It was so bad that I had a distaste for movie-watching for a few days afterwards; it reminded me how bad it can feel when you spend hours watching something that ends up being a horrible waste of time, a feeling usually reserved for reality television. I’m not sure why I stuck with it. Inertia? I kept thinking it was going to get better, but it only got worse.
Steve Carell, Keira Knightley, Adam Brody, Martin Sheen, Connie Britton–I like all of them, so why wouldn’t I like a movie where they all appear? Steve Carell: resoundingly unfunny, the most serious character in the movie. Keira Knightley: twitchy and blinky and the most annoying and insipid dream girl ever (stereotype of the record-loving, free-spirited bohemian romantic, down to the charmingly shapeless dresses and slouchy sweaters). Adam Brody: dreamboat rockstar boyfriend turned whiny coward. Martin Sheen: I guess I won’t go there because I don’t want to spoil the ending, even if I hope against all hope you won’t waste your time on this movie. Connie Britton: she was all right, actually.
If it had only been funny I wouldn’t have minded the rest of it so much, but, aside from a few moments (I can think of two), I don’t think I cracked a smile, not even inside. And I’m known to be fairly generous with the laughs. Instead Scafaria alternated weak attempts at humor with pretty much every cliched romantic expectation a writer could possibly think of, creating a movie so blah I couldn’t wait for the apocalypse to come.
Cute title, though.