Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Movie Review: "The To Do List" (2013)

Movie: "The To Do List"
Director: Maggie Carey
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 44 minutes
Brandy Klark (Aubrey Plaza), valedictorian of her high school class and all-around wholesome gal, wants to become sexually experienced before going off to college. She makes a to-do list of all of the sexual things she wants to try leading up to her freshman year.

Where to begin with this train wreck...

It's no secret that we disliked "The Heat," in fact, we hated it. It was overly crass for no good reason other than crassness itself.
This movie tops "The Heat" as one of the worst movies we've seen this summer.
Sure, you'd expect a movie about having all different types of sexual encounters to be somewhat graphic and crass...but the way this movie was made just isn't funny on top of the fact that it's overtly stupid, sexist, and excruciatingly long.

The only way this film differs from "Grown Ups 2" is the fact that it's not marketed to kids and young adults.

This movie takes the notion of sex and being a "player," which has generally been (unfortunately) reserved for a man's role in film, and puts a woman in center stage. Some call doing this "female empowerment," but nothing could be farther from the truth. Rather than creating an honest film that shows a true female perspective of women having sex and losing their virginity, it simply does the opposite: it creates a female "American Pie," but that's being too nice. There have been films in the past that have dealt with young women having sex in a frank manner but have done so in a more gracefully, see "Fast Times at Ridgemont High."

Aubrey Plaza's her character is downright awful. Instead of rising to the occasion, her "deadpan" style of humor is lost in this movie (not that it's even funny in the first place) and makes her sound mechanical and robotic. Her sister, portrayed by Rachel Bilson, is even worse: just because a woman is fine opening the door and having sex with some guy she barely knew and went to high school with years ago doesn't mean this is an example of women's empowerment. There are plenty of women who engage in casual sex but wouldn't act the way her character does in this film.

Speaking of this film's characters, this movie was supposed to be uproariously hilarious because of all of the "funny" people involved in it (Andy Samberg, Bill Hader, Donald Glover, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Alia Shawkat, Adam Pally, to name a few), yet almost every character falls flat and/or is completely grating, sexist, annoying, rude, or useless.

Plaza's character Brandy works at a pool during the summer. The employees flirt with everyone the see, drink beer and smoke weed on duty, and horse around all the time, which is behavior that wouldn't fly in the real world. Brandy is immediately called a bitch because she's assertive and knows what she wants. Once she begins to open up and let loose towards the end of the movie, she is immediately blamed for things going wrong, while the male employees are not even given a slap on the wrist, yet did things far worse than she had done. The instances of sexism in this movie are rampant and frequent.

This movie is supposed to take place in the early 90's, which would tell us the target audience is supposed to be in their mid-to-late thirties, possibly even people in their forties, since they lived through this time period...otherwise, why even have a movie that's a throwback to this time? We can't imagine this movie appealing to this age demographic anyways. The only benefit of setting this movie in the 90's is that the characters can't Google all of the sexual innuendo/sexual names in context, but then again, it begs the question: how the hell did she find out about all this stuff, besides a dictionary, which is shown to be of no assistance?

We could go on for days about how bad this movie was. In fact, I almost fell asleep three times, AND left the theater 5-10 minutes before the movie ended. It was that bad.

We thought better of you, Aubrey Plaza.

My Rating: 2/10
BigJ's Rating: 1.5/10
IMDB's Rating: 6.1/10 (how the hell....)
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 53%
Do we recommend this movie: AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE!!!

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