This Film is NOT a Future Release.
The Following Preview has been Archived.
April 30th, 2007:
Self-proclaimed stuntman Rod Kimble (Andy Samberg
) is preparing for the jump of his life. After a few failed attempts at becoming a movie star, Rod plans to clear fifteen buses in an attempt to raise money for his abusive stepfather Frank's (Ian McShane
) life-saving heart operation. With the support of his friends, step-brother and the girl of his dreams, he might just be able to do it.What to Expect:
This is a story that has become commonplace in Hollywood. Several childhood friends grow up to write, direct and star in their very own movie. Akiva Schaffer
, Jorma Taccone
, and Andy Samberg met in junior high school knowing that their future is in entertainment. After graduating from different schools, majoring in film and theater, the trio formed a group called The Lonely Island and have since been putting together comedic films, shorts, parody songs and music videos. After three failed attempts at a TV sitcom, the group ended up on the popular Saturday Night Live (SNL) TV show, on which Andy acts, Jorma writes, and Akiva writes and directs. Article continues below
Their first taste of fame came when the trio collaborated on a short called Lazy Sunday, which was a rap song by Andy and his SNL co-star Chris Parnell
. When the short was placed on YouTube it received a whopping 5 million views, before NBC took it down. Later, the group repeated their success with a short called D*ck in a Box, which featured Andy with pop star Justin Timberlake
. The short became the number one most viewed video on YouTube and even became a part of Timberlake's performance at Madison Square Garden, which Andy participated in as well. Since then, Andy has become a celebrity. During his appearance on Late Night with Conan O'Brian, he mentioned that people are yelling out "D*ck in a Box," when they see him on the street, which could get a bit uncomfortable, but it is also a sign that his dream of succeeding in showbiz was coming true.
Now that The Lonely Island group has garnered such attention and popularity, it is only right that the creator of SNL, Lorne Michaels, gives them a shot at the big time. That shot is a film called Hot Rod, which has Andy in the lead role as Rod Kimble, Akiva is the director, and Jorma plays Andy's half-brother Kevin. Joining the trio, are two more SNL cast members, Bill Hader
as the friend and Chris Parnell as the host of an AM radio station looking to sponsor Rod's jump.
In terms of humor, the film is said to be an extension of The Lonely Island's popular shorts, which comes as no surprise since that's all the trio knows how to do. Similar to D*ck in a Box, Hot Rod uses an 80s theme, which means thick moustaches, 80s music, ugly outfits and really anything else that was regrettable from that era.
Having never helmed a full feature film before might be a big problem for Akiva, since character development never came into the picture until now. So the main attraction will obviously be the jokes, which come fast and keep coming until the end, sometimes with zero setup. But will that be enough to fill up 90 minutes of entertainment? Just in case it isn't, he also threw in several Jackass-like stunts, a hot chick (Isla Fisher
) and Will Arnett
, who has perfected his jerk routine to perfection.
Early reviews have mentioned that the film is a bit choppy and jumps from one scene to another, mostly as an excuse to get to the jokes in order to keep the laughs coming. In fact, some scenes ended up surprisingly clever but have been put in without any kind of relevance to the actual story. But to be fair, the film does try to be more than gags, as The Lonely Island member Jorma is in the story to provide some emotion, in addition to some funny singing and dancing scenes. His role is of Rod's step-brother, who looks up to the accident-prone Rod and enjoys filming his stunts, even though they almost always end up disastrous. Similarly, Fisher's character is also part of Rod's support system, as the girl of his dreams, who cares for Rod, even though she has a boyfriend (Arnett). That's about all the depth you'll get out of this film.
Similar to most other SNL members, Lorne (creator of SNL and producer of the movie) is looking to be grooming Andy to become a big star, and possibly even be the next Adam Sandler
. Not only do their names sound almost exactly the same, but both started out with goofy sketches and music numbers and share a similar style of playing a lovable loser. Sandler actually had his first big movie, Billy Madison, at the age of 28, which is exactly the same age Samberg is now and releasing his own first film. Since Sandler is busy trying to win an Oscar and leaning toward more dramatic roles, someone has to take over the limitless comedies that he could be making, and that someone is Samberg. (For anyone that watches South Park, knows how many different films Sandler could be involved in).
Hot Rod might not be everything it should be, but it is a good start for promising careers of The Lonely Island group. At the same time, the studio is not taking too many chances by casting some recognizable faces; There is the Oscar winner Sissy Spacek
(In the Bedroom) and the Golden Globe winner Ian McShane ("Deadwood"), both playing Rod's step-parents.In Conclusion:
This film is a great start for the young Samberg, but unfortunately he is still relatively unknown, and placing him in the lead could hurt the box office results. On the bright side, this is exactly how most comedians got their start, so we're likely to see Samberg and the other Lonely Island members on the big screen again. So get used to it.Similar Titles: Happy Gilmore
, Napoleon Dynamite
, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy