Three buddies wake up from a bachelor party in Las Vegas, with no memory of the previous night and the bachelor missing. They make their way around the city in order to find their friend before his wedding.
John Beckwith and Jeremy Grey, a pair of committed womanizers who sneak into weddings to take advantage of the romantic tinge in the air, find themselves at odds with one another when John meets and falls for Claire Cleary.
Lazy court-process clerk and stoner Dale Denton has only one reason to visit his equally lazy dealer Saul Silver: to purchase weed, specifically, a rare new strain called Pineapple Express. But when Dale becomes the only witness to a murder by a crooked cop and the city's most dangerous drug lord, he panics and dumps his roach of Pineapple Express at the scene. Dale now has another reason to visit Saul: to find out if the weed is so rare that it can be traced back to him--and it is. As Dale and Saul run for their lives, they quickly discover that they're not suffering from weed-fueled paranoia: incredibly, the bad guys really are hot on their trail and trying to figure out the fastest way to kill them both. All aboard the Pineapple Express. Written by
Pineapple Express is good for many things, but the thing that it does best is in making you laugh.
There's no doubt about it, Pineapple Express is a relentlessly funny
stoner movie, start to finish with little in the way of compromise;
telling the story of two stoners, who end up entangled within a drug
conspiracy plot that threatens their lives while smoking plenty of pot
along the way, this year's latest instalment to the genre is the finest
example of dumb -but well delivered- comedy yet. One discrepancy
against it's classification as a stoner comedy however lies in that
even if you're not high yourself; even if you've never even been high
in your life, there's still lots of fun to be had here as the jokes are
broad enough in their design to apply to any ridiculous situation. So
while the plant obviously makes a starring role here, the focus is not
primarily on it, and the movie is better off as a result.
So far this year we have been treated to an unusually high dosage of
stoner comedies, with Pineapple Express being a late third behind the
too-dumb-for-it's-own-good Strange Wilderness and the dumb-but-fun
Harold & Kumar. However, despite coming in late to the game, the old
expression of "saving the best 'till last" seems applicable here. Where
previous instalments from this year combined the dumb with surreal
through incoherent situations obviously dreamt up from people who were
under the influence at the time, Pineapple Express feels silly, but not
the extent where the entire feature boils down to caricature comedy.
Here the writers take two characters, start them off one place and take
them on an adventure not just through crime, car-chases, comical fight
scenes and little personal squabbles, but through themselves. It's a
combination which could have had a disastrously polarising effect, but
the writers get it spot on here.
Main characters Dale Denton (Seth Rogan) and Saul Silver (James Franco)
may have alliterative names akin to comic book heroes, but they're
certainly not of that kind. Instead, they deal with drugs; Saul is
Dale's supplier, and as much as Saul would like to think of Dale as a
buddy, Dale wants nothing else to do with him outside of the service he
provides. However, after Dale witnesses a murder involving some
drug-dealer crimelords, the two are forced to embark on a journey that
will have them at odds with each other whether they like it or not.
What results of this is a story of friendship, and while the unlikely
premise of these guys not exactly getting along does seem a bit shifty,
the chemistry between Rogan and Franco is superb enough to allow their
characters plenty of growing. To be sure, this isn't a hallmark drama,
there are no grandeur statements and no tears are provoked from
director David Gordon Green but that's what makes it lovable; it's a
story about two regular guys, who get into crazy shenanigans, smoke
weed and crack some jokes. It's not enlightening per se, but it's
entertaining, and down to earth.
This is where Pineapple Express begins to take the lead in front of its
predecessors, as it actually attempts to tell a compelling story with
an undoubtedly overblown amount of action, but with grounded drama to
bear the weight of its fabrications. Through this fusion of solid
characterisation with a ridiculous but conceivable action-packed plot,
the film succeeds in creating an engagingly entertaining experience
that doesn't just provide excitement and memorable characters, but also
manages to tickle the funny bone just as frequently.
Coming from the three guys who last year blessed the screen with the
hilarious Superbad, Pineapple Express is a riot start to finish,
combining lots of blunt dialogue with slapstick and farce to great
effect in ways which made the aforementioned creation as funny as it
was. It has to be said that this time around, the pacing isn't quite as
tight, and the script's insistence on some scenes' ability to sustain
laughter is a little off, and this in turn leads to the movie's only
real technical fault. In such moments, jokes will be drawn out for long
stretches of time, losing momentum, yet thankfully such scenes are far
and few between, and with the pace heightening the more film reaches
the conclusion; the frequency sharply decreases with time.
Nevertheless, if you don't mind profane dialogue, blunt jokes and
plenty of passive violence used mainly for comic effect, then Pineapple
Express should please any desire for laughter that you may have.
And that's all it basically comes down to, but what else were you
expecting? As a movie, Pineaple Express is an entertaining and at times
sweet take on friendship based around two very down to earth characters
that most people should be able to relate to in some way or another. As
a duo, Rogan and Franco are extremely well matched, with the interplay
between the two coming off as naturally comical and aptly delivered to
the point of satisfying the movie's biggest pulling point and focus.
With some great action scenes tinged with plenty of comedy, all
revolving around some memorable characters portrayed by enthusiastic,
suitably cast performers who end up within a plot which is admittedly
hammy, but fun all the same; Pineapple Express is good for many things,
but the thing that it does best is in making you laugh, and it does so
with enough frequency to make this one of this year's greater comedies.
Written by Jamie Robert Ward (http://www.invocus.net)
27 of 44 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?