Hamlet 2 (2008)
Writer: Pam Brady, Andrew Flemming
Director: Andrew Flemming
Starring: Steve Coogan
An out-of-work, shitty actor has just one more show to prove that the high school drama program he runs must be saved.
i went into this with expectation. i've been waiting for this one for awhile. and i told myself as it began you are dumb. don't have expectations. i ruined it for myself a little, i think. damn expectations. i wanted more of the play. although the stuff with steve coogan's character was really funny and the drama kids in their drama kid way was captured perfectly, because those drama kids are ridiculous in real life, i wanted more hamlet 2. instead of the mostly referenced plot and situations. i would have enjoyed just a little set up and the play in its entirety.
i did appreciate what they were trying to do with the whole outrageous and "offensive" play overshadowed by the hoopla its rumor created. that it didn't matter whether it was a piece of crap or not because it should have been allowed to be made because we live in a "free speech" country and all that. and it was protested and shut down even before it had been performed because of the (funny) nonsense it supposedly contained. actually i think that's more idealistic than the movie intended. i think it's more about how if you create shock value and bad crazy publicity, people will go see it in droves. even if it is a piece of crap.
this makes me want to watch gentlemen broncos again. i think that was a funnier movie about awesome ridiculousness.
p.s. elizabeth shue was the bomb in this movie.
I love me some Steve Coogan. I don't love me a TON of Steve Coogan; but I love me some Steve Coogan. This film actually expands his range, specifically into the realm of physical comedy, and that's great. The supporting cast is also quite good; and these guys pulled from quite the pool to get the second string. Elizabeth Shue OWNED her scenes. It's my opinion that all her reaction shots during the actual production were genuine.
The story, however, shares a trait with many of Coogan's other projects. It's much funnier in an outline than in a script. Some of the stuff either went too far or just fell flat. The relationship with the wife (Catherine Keener, in another excellent performance) should have been more overtly ridiculous, with (e.g.)her fucking the roommate on the couch in front of Coogan's oblivious stare. Most of the things with which he interacted weren't quite enough. His level of self-awareness was off compared to the Alan Partridge stuff.
That's a bit of a shame. A lot of the kid-supporters were quite good; and the actual production of the play was really good. If they were to make that into a musical it would be worth paying a high school to watch. The satire (inherent the play - the satire of the ACLU was so rote and weak that I'd practically forgotten about it until I read above) was far funnier and hit much harder than the actual character stuff.
Finally, I totally disagree with my woman about Gentlemen Broncos, but that's not news.