Reporting Julie Fisk
“The Watch” stars Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughn and Jonah Hill as small town men who start a neighborhood watch to find a murderer. It was directed by Akiva Schaffer, a former Saturday Night Live writer & member of Andy Sandberg’s Lonely Island group. You’ve seen Akiva in all of those SNL music videos, like “I’m on a Boat“ and other titles I can’t write here without getting in trouble.
The movie was slated for release earlier this year, but it was pushed back when Trayvon Martin was shot by George Zimmerman. 20th Century Fox decided that putting out a movie about a trigger-happy Neighborhood Watch might be in bad taste. The delay however doesn’t keep “The Watch” from being a bad movie. Ben Stiller starts his neighborhood watch to find the killer of his friend & Costco co-worker. They end up on the trail of space aliens though and that’s when the shooting starts.
Honestly, I’m starting to think that people make movies just so they can hang out with Vince Vaughn for a few months. I get it, he seems like a fun guy, but “The Watch” doesn’t seem at all concerned with making a good or even very funny movie. Many of the comedy scenes appeared to be improvised so they ended up being weird instead of funny. That might be enough for some people, like the guy sitting behind me who laughed so hard he almost fell out of his seat & into my row, but I expect more from such high power comedy actors. In fact, I’d like to challenge Vince Vaughn to try actually ACTING again. He’s played the same character for the past 6 movies now and it’s starting to look lazy.
All bashing aside, I did have a handful of belly-laughs and they’re reason I’m giving “The Watch” a C-. But if you’re anything like Sir Laughs A Lot sitting behind me, you’ll love it.
Julie Fisk – Member of the DFW Film Critics Association