Saturday, 13 December 2014

Are You Here

Winter time seems always be a good time for a romantic comedy. When you put together such cinematic "ingredients" as a well known comedic cast like Owen Wilson (The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Internship), Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover Trilogy, Due Date) and Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation) and a script written by talented Matthew Weiner (creator of Mad Men) that sounds like a winning combination, right? What could possibly go wrong? I was very enthusiastic to watch the latest comedy Are You Here (Lionsgate), especially that my husband mentioned a comedy with Owen Wilson he saw at the last film festival in Venice, which he said was very funny.
I made myself a big cup of tea and sat comfortably on a sofa to enjoy the film which was hailed as a fantastic comedy.

Image credit: Lionsgate UK

There are two main protagonists - an immature Ben Baker, whose purpose in life seems to be to get high, and Steve Dallas, a womanizer and a semi-successful weatherman. When Ben receives the news that his estranged father dies, both men travel to the funeral. At his old home, Ben meets his mother-in-law Angela. With Angela, I had a feeling the script writer wasn't quite sure whether to portray her as a positive role-model or a wanton man-eater. She works with disabled children (this was mentioned once, but never actually shown), weds an elderly man and is quite free with her favours. She is like an unbaked baguette, i.e. there is a promise there which is not quite fulfilled. Apart from obvious bodily assets, there is not much substance in her.
Then there is a money-driven sister Terry who hates Angela (for all the right reasons, if you ask me).
After discovering just how much he inherits from his father's will, Ben dreams of a commune of free people and wants to change the world.

After the first ten minutes, I was left more puzzled than amused. I wasn't sure why it was supposed to be a romantic comedy. Would it get funny further along? I carried on, and when the film ended, I asked myself, Is that all?

The actors try their best to do a good performance of rather flat role parts.
And then there was a horrible scene of a chicken being butchered. I'm glad I wasn't eating anything at that point, as it was truly sickening. This is not even remotedly comic or romantic.

This comedy didn't appeal to my sense of humour, but other people might find it amusing. That is, if a naked bum and a sight of an Amish pinny covering one's family jewels makes you chuckle.

Lionsgate UK presents Are You Here starring Owen Wilson, Zach Galifiakis, Amy Poehler and Laura Ramsey to watch on demand and download to own from 25th December 2014 and in cinemas January 2nd 2015.

Image credit: Lionsgate UK


  1. My sister brought this round for a girlie night in and I must admit I struggled to find it funny too. My friend enjoyed it so I guess it takes all sorts :)

    1. Thank you! Glad, I'm not the only one. I found the chicken scene quite disturbing. Wish I didn't see it.