Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Pineapple Express

Although Pineapple Express may not be better than some comedies made by Woody Allen, it stands out from most Hollywoodian comedies. Of course, we can forgive the script for being a little bit childish at times. Besides, if it wasn't for the cast's terrific performance, I'm not sure I'd have enjoyed watching it.

While he was smoking a rare drug named "pineapple express" in his car, Dale Denton (Seth Rogen), a stoner, saw an Asian criminal getting killed by both Ted Jones (Gary Cole), a drug trafficker, and a corrupted female police officer (Rosie Perez) who works hand in hand with Jones. Afterwards, Dale gets as quickly as possible to the appartment of Saul Silver (James Franco), his dealer and the only person in town who sells "pineapple express".

However, since Dale remembered that he dropped a roach of "pineapple express" in his lousy getaway, Saul and Dale have no other choice but to run for their life. Besides, Dale also has to protect his girlfriend Angie (Amber Heard), who is too mature for him, before he decides to take on Ted Jones and his gang with the help of Saul and Red (Danny McBride), Saul's friend.

Obviously, Pineapple Express is a mixture of genres, which are comedy and crime films à la Quentin Tarantino. This can be seen through the heavy presence of drugs, the violence or even the criminals (i.e. the characters). However, let's not give too much honour to Appatow and his gang by comparing this film to Pulp Fiction or other films from Tarantino.

After all, given the scriptwriters' preoccupation with piling up one vulgar joke after another and the action, don't expect the characters to be solidly built as much as those you see in comedies that are much better than this one. In other words, Pineapple Express is not a film that can juggle quite well with the characters' personal problems and the humour like Le dîner des cons. In other words, this is the structure of the script: the leading characters are pursued by the bad guys and then, they do everything they can to teach a lesson to the bad guys even if it means making an idiot of themselves.

Finally, if we can to forgive this film for being a little bit immature (but funny if you positively respond to that kind of humour) on the edges, it's because of the amazing performance from the duo made of Seth Rogen and James Franco who manage to play the perfect losers. Besides, the other reason why we can forgive this film, it's also because it's less formulaic and predictable than Growing Op, another drug comedy.

Rating: 3.5/5

Origin:USA (2008)
Length:112 minutes
Screenplay:Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg
Director:David Gordon Green
Seth Rogen, James Franco, Danny McBride, Gary Cole, Rosie Perez and Amber Heard

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