Many critics have called Movie 43 the worst film of all time.
That’s a bit of a stretch. Since you’re reading Pop Culture Lunch Box, you probably don’t have an allergy to wacky tastelessness, and I would recommend you waste 94 minutes of your time on this start-studded hot mess.
Actually, let me amend that. The five best sketches (there are 16 in all) are front-loaded at the start. Once Justin Long, Jason Sudeikis, and John Hodgeman’s “Superhero Speed Dating” kicks in, it is all severely downhill and this laughfest quickly becomes a seriously amateur stinker:
- The Catch – Kate Winslet plays a businesswoman who is convinced to go out with Hugh Jackman after her friend shows her a magazine with him on the cover. But once they arrive at a restaurant on their date, Jackman removes his scarf to expose an unfortunate problem with his neck. Nobody else seems to be bothered by it, which increasingly flummoxes Winslet.
- Homeschooled – Real-life couple Live Schreiber and Naomi Watts tell their new neighbors about all the wonders of their homeschooling program for their little Kevin. They try to replicate the high-school environment of hazing, dating, and parties to a thoroughly ridiculous degree.
- iBabe – Richard Gere is the Steve Jobs-like boss at his company, which is figuring out how to market its music player shaped like a life-size woman. Gere and his workers are also trying to deal with the fallout from an internal fan in the machine that is chopping off the penises of the men and boys trying to have sex with the iBabe.
- The Proposition – Chris Pratt of Parks and Recreation proposes to Anna Faris, who then opens up to him that she wants to be defecated upon. J.B. Smoove is perfect as the friend who convinces Pratt to get with Faris’ program by taking lots of laxatives and eating tons of Mexican food. Needless to say, there hasn’t been such an explosive ending in a movie since the “thin wafer mint” scene in Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life.
- Veronica – The least funny of these five, but still amusing. Kieran Culkin and his ex-girlfriend Emma Stone still clearly have a thing for each other that they discuss at the grocery store where Culkin is working in the check-out line, with the store microphone on. The customers become engaged with the lewd conversation.
Although these five segments would get a higher rating, the movie as a whole (which, I should mention, is loosely held together by the fact that these are all skits proposed as part of a movie pitch from a washed-up Dennis Quaid holding movie executive Greg Kinnear at gunpoint) only gets:
** out of ***** stars